TF2’s Mann vs Machine Gets Off to a Rocky Start

mann vs machine

Valve’s crazy new addition to Team Fortress 2, the co-op mode Mann vs. Machine, launched last night, and if you had a similar experience to me, you spent most of the evening waiting in a queue for a community server because you’re too cheap to buy a Tour of Duty ticket.

If this is the first you’re hearing of Mann vs. Machine, here’s a quick rundown: you team up with five friends and fight robots. Even if you haven’t played Team Fortress proper in years, the prospect of co-op in that game is probably enough to entice you to come back (I know it worked for me). The problem last night was that, given that the mode just launched, the demand for community run servers far outpaced the supply.

To play in the official Mann Up mode and get access to the Valve servers, you need to buy a Tour of Duty ticket. When Mann vs. Machine launched last night, there were a whole bunch of Valve servers waiting for paying customers. The co-op is still free-to-play, but it has to be on community run servers, of which there were a ridiculously low number; somewhere in the neighborhood of hundreds as compared to the thousands of official servers. If you’re still confused about how Mann Up works in conjunction with Mann vs. Machine, Icrontic has a great flowchart explaining how the whole thing works.

I would have loved to play MvM last night, but the fact that you can’t even host a private server to get a game going (at least not yet, without console commands) kind of killed my enthusiasm. Well, that and the waiting an hour in queue for a community server without success. Once more unofficial servers start popping online, this hiccup will go away, but unless you’re willing to spend money to play on the Valve servers, expect Mann vs. Machine to be a less than stable experience for the first few days.

Did anyone actually manage to play this last night? If you did, what are you thoughts?

Written by

mitch@gamersushi.com Twitter: @mi7ch Gamertag: Lubeius PSN ID: Lubeius SteamID: Lube182 Origin/EA:Lube182 Currently Playing: Stardew Valley, Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam, Knights of the Old Republic 2: The Sith Lords, Battlefield 4, Tom Clancy Double Feature: Rainbow Six Siege and The Division

4 thoughts on “TF2’s Mann vs Machine Gets Off to a Rocky Start”

  1. I bought this game the second day it was released with the Orange Box so I shouldn’t be too worried then? I hope I would not have to buy something else just to play a new feature to TF2. Oh wait, Mann Co. Store… I’m sad now

  2. Dont use the queue its worthless. I have gotten to play several games by joining as spectator and quickly joining in the second someone left. (even then i was still really lucky!) The new mode is fun but also kind of lacking. It didn’t feel nearly as team oriented as regular tf2 but it was fun in its own way. With the weapon upgrade system everyone is basically running around with a God cannon by the end of the match, yet the enemies were strong enough it didn’t feel OP. It was very fun all in all and ill play it more once the servers calm down a bit. However, in several of the games I played, lag was a SERIOUS problem and i had a lot of trouble with the item server. This may just be a fixable bug or it could be that this mode is very demanding of the host’s CPU. At any rate, This will be a fun new mode once they work out the kinks… Whew…
    I wasn’t planning on writing an article on this subject

  3. Same thing happened with CS:GO when everyone who pre-purchased the game suddenly got injected into the beta. I spent the better part of 2 hours trying to get 2 friends who pre-ordered the game into a Comp game with me using the Find A Game or in a lobby together. The best we could connect to was EU servers with a ping of 150 – 200 which obviously sucked. Eventually I just had to find a random “casual” server, which was fine, but it was more difficult than it should have been.

    I know it’s just beta, but it’s a bad first impression to almost everyone I’ve talked to. I’m surprised the TF2 one went so sour as well.

  4. Well, I feel it’s a rip off that I didn’t get my Mann Up ticket, since I bought the game twice, once just a single copy of itself and then with orange box. And I bought orange box twice, once on PS3 and then on the PC 😀
    Anyways, the mode feels good if you have sensible teammates, as the difficulty curve is a bit steep after the first few rounds and you have to collect all of the dropped money so you don’t get left out of the necessary upgrades. It’s meant to be played with friends. It’s a shame 2 people can’t connect to a server from the same IP, which means I can’t play it together with my brother.

    You should never be too afraid to use console commands when playing valve games, just, for the ease of learning them, set your source game to launch with these parameters “-windowed -noborder”, so you can alt+tab with ease and no crashing.
    These commands have made it possible for me and my friends to play l4d2 4 player co-op on 2 pc’s, each with a dual monitor setup. The same goes for portal 2. I truly believe that portal 2’s co-op was meant to be played splitscreen as it is much more fun to actually point out where to place a portal and what to do with a LIVE person sitting besides you.

Comments are closed.