Operation Payback has been a Valve-enabled effort to return the debt of gratitude the Counter-Strike community owes to its finest mapmakers. At the end of last month it transpired that, at current exchange rate, that gratitude has been worth $150,000 to the community creators featured in the pack – more than $20k each.
To celebrate, Valve have offered players an extension on their loan. And they’re already looking about the Workshop for more maps to highlight.
We’re a tad late with this – the Payback servers were originally due to pack in on July 31. But since then, the CS dev team have decided to elongate the event for an extra month. They’ll allow paying players low-ping access to the pack’s seven maps on official servers until August 31.
“Meanwhile, we’re looking at a great list of maps that we hope to include in the next operation,” write the developers. “If you’ve been working on a map, now is the time to make sure it’s in the workshop and getting votes!”
For the next three weeks, you’ll be able to hand over $5.99 to play the current Classic Casual map group – featuring Museum, Downtown, Seaside, Thunder, Favela, Motel and Library.
The initiative has clearly been a great success. And it’s not isolated. Last month, a similar move saw Valve relinquish a percentage of their TF2 Workshop cut to community mentors.
Which other neglected communities could benefit from a splash of Valve’s thinking, do you think?