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Upcoming Left 4 Dead Update (6-25-09)
Zoid Kirsch Wrote:As mentioned on the Left 4 Dead blog recently, we're are going to release an update that adds support for third party custom campaigns. For server operators, there are a few significant things to be aware of for this release.

First off, we're giving authors of new campaigns the ability to put all their campaign data into a single .VPK file for easy distribution. On the server, you just install these in the left4dead/addons folder just like clients do. You can install one and activate it on the server without restarting by entering "update_addon_paths;mission_reload" into the server console after placing the .VPK file in the addons folder.

Also, we have fixed the fact Left4Dead tends to hog the 63 character server tags. We've extended the master servers and the steam API to allow servers to send up a list of keys separate from tags for matchmaking, up to 1200 bytes in size. We're moving the sv_search_key, sv_gametypes and sv_steamgroup tags out of the regular server tags and into this extended set. The extended set will also be used by servers to send up a list of the names of the third party custom campaigns they have installed so players can find them. The "sv_showtags" command will now list the normal tags as public and the extended matchmaking-only tags as private. The private matchmaking tags are only communicated between your server and the master server. We also extended sv_steamgroup to allow a server to be in multiple groups by specifying the group IDs separated by commas.

When players now select a custom third party campaign add-on and search for a dedicated server, it will look at these extended tags for the name and version of the campaign installed. Server operators will certainly want to keep an eye on the various Left 4 Dead add-on websites for popular third party campaigns and install them for people to play on their server.
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fqdn Wrote:if you've seen the any of the matrix movies, a game server is not all that different. it runs a version of the game that handles the entire world for each client connected. that's the 2 sentence explanation.

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