Team Fortress 2’s botting problem becomes so severe that players can’t play at all, facing constant kills and being booted from servers.
Dealing with cheaters, hackers, and bots in any online competitive game is a difficult task. The constant fight against the hacking situation in Call of Duty: Warzone is one such example, but one community that has seen next to no relief of its botting problem is Team Fortress 2.
Team Fortress 2 is rapidly approaching its fifteenth birthday, but that doesn’t mean that it’s an unloved game. TF2 still manages to see pretty consistently high user counts on the Steam platform, but many of the players aren’t having a good time and are at the end of their rope.
Team Fortress 2 has been seeing a major botting problem since at least 2020, and it has arguably gotten worse instead of better. Valve initially addressed the problem in 2020 and made some changes to help limit who could access certain aspects of the game, like voice chat, but the TF2 patches were insufficient at the time and the botting problem continues. Players report that they can’t play the game at all on Valve’s casual match servers due to an overwhelming number of bots that automatically snipe opponents the moment they appear outside of their team’s base.
However, the matter gets worse than that. Botters are now using tactics in order to purposefully troll legitimate players outside of simply getting kills. Botting players have begun impersonating legitimate users to get them booted from the server in order to bring more bots in. Add to that a constant onslaught of SPAM and hateful comments in the voice and text chat, and players are more than fed up.
The problem has gotten so bad that well-known Team Fortress 2 YouTuber SquimJim has taken to the platform to try and bring attention to the problem. Viewers have reached out to media outlets and Valve itself to try and raise awareness of the problem, and with any luck, to see some kind of official acknowledgment from Valve that the problem exists and that the company is looking into it. Unfortunately, at the time of this writing, Valve hasn’t made any official statements.
Team Fortress 2 has been a beloved FPS since its release, and after going free-to-play, it became many players’ first experience with the gaming genre. The amusing characters, unique and creative loadouts, and distinct style have set it apart and kept fans interested even as official updates for the game have become fewer, and new content has dwindled. However, if players can’t actually play without constant harassment and being booted from matches, Team Fortress 2 could meet a tragic end. With any luck, Valve will step up to the challenge and give the classic FPS the attention it and its fanbase deserve.
Team Fortress 2 is available now for PC.
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