Talk:Item drop system

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Daily Item Cap

Hi guys. I was discussing things with ShunyValdez, and there seems to be a daily cap on the number of items you can get aside from the weekly cap of hours in which you can get items. Essentially, if you idle for a single day and use up all your "alloted weekly cap of hours", you might not be able to get any more items for the rest of the week.

There seems to be some truth to this as when I played for over 12 hrs, I only got 6 items for the entire week, but then when I played for about 2-3hrs/day in the span of 3 days, I was able to get 12 items (and it wasn't carry-over from the previous week - I had just received 6 items the week before).

Can anyone else confirm this? There's also been some talk that idling will get you less items than actively playing, possibly due to the daily item cap + weekly hours cap combination? Essentially if idlers use up all their alloted weekly hours in the span of a single day, that's it for them, just 6 items? -Object404 02:09, 6 December 2010 (UTC)

As far as my observation has been, it really doesn't affect it, as I've heard this "rumor" before. I've idled weeks in straight up training mode for 24 hours straight, and other times in playtime bunches of 2-4 hours, like you've stated. The amount of drops I received wasn't that significantly different - they seemed to be still in the same ballpark of 6-10 items + 1-3 crates, regardless of method, server type (local or an idle server), or play time. Everything is complete speculation until commented on by devs, in my opinion. I can probably go more in depth, but that can be reserved for a PM/friend request/IRC chat if you wish to converse further on this matter with my observations/results. ventus|talk    02:16, 6 December 2010 (UTC)
Was your idling continous over a span of days, or was it just for 1-2 days out of a week? How long were your idling sessions per day? Thanks! -Object404 03:55, 6 December 2010 (UTC)
I heard it was 11 hours, with the last week's unused hours stacking on top. Wakkydude 20:08, 18 December 2010 (UTC)

Multiple drop mechanics

I've added an explanation on how a player can "receive" multiple items/drops (shown on the hud as multiple "has found"). I would be thinking of a way to make the explanation a lot clearer (I'm unsatisfied at the current state). -- ShunyValdez 15:55, 8 October 2010 (UTC)

I also noticed that "stuck in the void" items appeared in the backpack (without a full-screen notification offering to open backpack or use it) when I sorted it. --Zhur 19:52, 27 May 2011 (UTC)

Under what conditions will you not receive item drops?

The information I have been able to find is old, and sometimes contradictory. I was hoping to find the answers here, on the wiki, but no mention is made in this article. Do you still have to be signed into the friends system to receive item drops? If you do not, when did this change take place? Lastly, can you receive drops in training mode, offline practice, or by creating a private LAN or internet server?

If somebody can find this information, I feel it would be a great addition to the article, for people like myself who haven't followed the system very closely. --Shackanaw 08:32, 10 July 2010 (UTC)

I'll answer what I do know: You can receive drops in a private LAN server (I get items all the time while tr_walkway'ing), and I assume offline practice/training mode is exactly the same as that (only a different map). As for your other question, I don't know D: — WindPower 08:35, 10 July 2010 (UTC)
I received an item drop in offline practice while I was not signed into my friends list, so those two are answered. However, I still do not know when they made it so you do not have to be signed into the Steam Community. --Shackanaw 01:08, 16 July 2010 (UTC)


What's that "cite error" BS at the bottom of the page? -Shine () 13:40, 23 August 2010 (UTC)

There were <ref> tags in use without <references /> appearing anywhere on the page. I've fixed it now. seb26 [talk] 21:22, 23 August 2010 (UTC)

Why is there a Milestone section to this article?

It seems to be unnecessarily long, and doesn't add more to the generalized discussion than just indicating that items drop from earning achievements in addition to randomly.

Absoluteparanoia 12:59, 14 October 2010 (UTC)


"Despite the new systems Idling still exists, however it is now possible using the offline mode (use of the -textmode game launch parameter combined with -novid and -nosound to disable video and audio processing respectively) leaving server providers free to provide a gaming experience."

-novid just disables the intro video, it would seem to be -textmode that actually disables video. I don't use -textmode though so I'll let someone else who knows more fix it...

--The MAZZTer 19:52, 14 October 2010 (UTC)

I noticed this too. - LingoSalad(talk) 14:03, 23 November 2010 (UTC)

New way of idling

I have been playing in the offline practice mode with the bots and got no less then 2 weapons and a crate. This will allow a lot of players to idle without connecting to the internet or using a lot of CPU. We need to test further what can and can't be used to see how to idle in this mode. Daminshi

This seems odd, I'm pretty sure the drop system is managed outside of the TF2 client. Perhaps it could've been things in your TF2 drop queue that you didn't receive when you last signed off. Either way, if anybody supports your claim then I'll certainly be interested in looking into this. -RJ 02:04, 15 October 2010 (UTC)

This was a significant amount of time between drops and I didn't get those several items before. I even used no clip and Sv_cheats randomly and still got the crate. It's weird. Also got a new Huntsman.  :3 I love this. Daminshi

The idling article is marked for deletion, but giving instructions and/or discussing the various methods for connecting to TF2 servers and the likelihood of recieving items from the item drop system is ok?Nooch 02:22, 15 October 2010 (UTC)
This isn't a new way, you've always been able to idle in offline practice --Firestorm 02:22, 15 October 2010 (UTC)
This is news to me because I've tried it before and it didn't work. It was before the April patch that changed the random time drop to the fixed time drop, must have been very unlucky with my PC running for 36 hours. Daminshi
Oh you meant offline practise? I misinterpreted you and thought you meant Steam was in Offline mode. -RJ 09:56, 15 October 2010 (UTC)
Now I know for certain that items can be dropped in that mode. I got a error saying my "server", my TF2 client running offline practice, "lost connection to Steam." So the Steam item and drop servers are connected to my "offline" practice mode. Daminshi

Items drop outside of game

I've been getting a few weapons when I start up my game and look in the Mann Store. Who else has noticed? Daminshi

-Sometimes you can be due to recieve items, but due to certain circumstances these may not 'drop' until the next time you play. Matimoo 09:36, 14 March 2011 (UTC)

56 items per week?

"The maximum amount of items you can get is not known, however it can't exceed 56 because the day drop limit is 8. On average a player gets ~6 items a week. [2] The system resets each player's item drop count around each Wednesday, Pacific standard time where Valve is located."

Seems somebody messed up here. Secret Agent Clank 01:51, 24 October 2010 (UTC)

Er. I thought it was, like, 11 items a week?
Idling page says 8-12 items a week, which seems right, so I'm going to change that.
Regardless, from what I hear, if you don't get your drops for a week they carry over, can anyone confirm?
One of my sources :
Secret Agent Clank 03:40, 27 October 2010 (UTC)
I've heard a LOT of contradictory information regarding the drop limits. Some places say 8-12 items per DAY, others (like here) say per WEEK. I know I can get 11-13 items per day, which is already more than this page and other sources I've seen have claimed. Lately for some reason I get NO drops anymore during normal gameplay, but if I leave the game idling for even 30 minutes - even AFTER a day of no drops whatsoever, and regardless of how long ago the drop system was reset - I start getting items again. What on earth is going on here?!
I'm still experimenting with the system to determine how many items can be acquired per week/why I don't get drops anymore except when idling. About to test if I can get more items after having gotten 12 or so earlier in the week, perhaps I'll report back if I get any interesting results. Will-T 06:48, 31 October 2010 (UTC)
There are not caps on the quantity of items one can receive per week, but instead caps on the amount of playtime in which drops can be obtained - and this playtime has been determined based upon the average time spent in TF2 to make it fairer for those who don't have the time to play. This means that light-players will get more than they would've with the older system, and heavy-players would get a similar amount (instead of a lot more - with the old sytstem. Check out the tf2 blog about the newer system here: -RJ 09:36, 31 October 2010 (UTC)
It seems like the item is artificially capped at 12 items, however if you did not reach the cap a week prior, you can earn up to two more items. I've achieved 14 items in a single night only once from many months of idling on several accounts. This needs a lot more testing. Sanitysama 03:20, 25 August 2011 (PDT)

No items when playing with bots?

My computer isn't powerful enough to handle online matches very well, but I can play with bots just fine, so that's what I've done for a long time now. For several weeks I haven't gotten any item drops in normal gameplay with bots. I do, however, seem to get drops if I'm playing tr_walkway or just mucking around solo on any map, even the same ones that don't give drops with bots. Does anyone else have this experience? Has Valve changed something so that using bots stops the drop system from working? Will-T 21:36, 11 November 2010 (UTC)

I was still able to get items when playing with bots... Maybe you just hit your cap. Meter1060 19:20, 23 November 2010 (UTC)
I got a drop while playing with bots today, so I think things might be back to normal, though I don't know what was different before, if anything. I don't think it was me hitting my cap, because I wouldn't get drops even if I'd found nothing at all yet in that week. For now it looks like things are good again ... I hope they stay that way! Will-T 20:07, 25 November 2010 (UTC)

Separate drop timers?

In the Mann Co. Supply Crate discussion we noticed that drops are on separate timers. At the very least, there is separation between droppable tools and droppable weapons/hats as its pretty common to see a double drop (i.e. a crate and a weapon drop on the same death). I don't think there is enough verifiable data out there to add onto the wiki page but how do we start determining what is separate and what isn't? Is it possible since hats drop so infrequently? Iloverice 23:59, 11 November 2010 (UTC)

I believe Robin has responded in an email that they are indeed on separate timers because it wouldn't be fair to have one of your item drops used up by an item that you need to pay to open. Moussekateer 00:01, 12 November 2010 (UTC)
Then it might be useful information to put in. Meter1060 19:21, 23 November 2010 (UTC)
I thought the article used to say this. Was it removed, or maybe I'm misremembering? (Digging through the edit history is tedious.) The separate drop timer would be useful information to include, maybe just cite "personal correspondence." --Itsatrap 19:21, 24 November 2010 (UTC)
Aha, I found it. It was mentioned in the Mann Co. Supply Crate article in early October, but was removed on October 12, 2010 as an unsourced statement. A quick web search turns up comments that "crates use a separate drop system," but those all point back to the wiki, so nothing solid. --Itsatrap 19:42, 24 November 2010 (UTC)
Maybe a good ol' fashioned email to Robin is in order so we can source it? Meter1060 19:59, 24 November 2010 (UTC)

Double Drop-Rate week: December 23rd-30th, 2010

Item drops are doubled from tomorrow through the day before New Year's Eve.

ALSO: there'll be a special "stocking stuffer" sometime, possibly Christmas. Satorifan 04:41, 23 December 2010 (UTC)

*Quick update: That's what's dropping, and it IS confirmed that it'll drop on Christmas. Satorifan 04:53, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
We know all this. Also you can get the key now. User Moussekateer signature sprite.pngMoussekateer·talk 04:54, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
The hours per week are the same to can get items? Jag Gentleman 23:58, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
Yes, seems like it. User Moussekateer signature sprite.pngMoussekateer·talk 00:00, 24 December 2010 (UTC)

There is a little bit of confusion about what the «double drop rate» means. Do items drop two regular amounts or just twice faster? Ee9 09:40, 24 December 2010 (UTC)

Error in "Advantages and disadvantages"

"- alleviating the need for dedicated idling servers.", in textmode you still need to connect to a server to be eligible for drops. Bobic 07:24, 23 December 2010 (UTC)

I think what it's saying is that you don't need to connect to an external server anymore. You do have to connect to one but it can be your own (training map or bot map). User Moussekateer signature sprite.pngMoussekateer·talk 07:27, 23 December 2010 (UTC)

Non-dropping item list?

Could be useful? Just like the non-purchasable item list in the Mann Co. store.

Is there any reliable source on what drops and what not? Aside from promotional stuff, I do believe both the jumpers don't drop (but I could be wrong though).--Kid Of The Century 11:30, 20 January 2011 (UTC)

The jumpers and crit-a-cola doesn't drop, I never see that. Jag Gentleman 11:55, 20 January 2011 (UTC)
Crit-a-cola does drop now. Impoxdragon 15:24, 21 August 2011 (PDT)

am, pm, 24.00 time?

The wiki page says that the drop cap "resets every Thursday at approximately 0:00AM Greenwich Mean Time (GMT)." As a non-american I have big problems with the am/pm system since it goes from 11:59pm to 12.00am, it doesn't make any sense to me. Anyway, i didn't think that 0:00AM existed, and on wikipedia, it isn't listed, so what exactly is 0:00AM? Is it 00:00 in the 24h system? This should be made clearer. Traxus 10:03, 18 February 2011 (UTC)

To me "0:00 AM" doesn't make any sense. I'm not used to the AM/PM notation, but also I don't know how it is seen in the rest of the world.--Kid Of The Century 11:50, 18 February 2011 (UTC)
00:00AM is 0000h, 12-midnight in the morning. Basically, when it turns Thursday in Greenwich, drops reset. ==Fax Celestis talkcontribhome 09:27, 16 September 2012 (PDT)

336 hours worth of playtime?

When the article says how it will carry over for a maximum of 2 weeks playtime, does that mean 336 hours (hours in 2 weeks) instead of 11?? Somebody who knows, please respond. The preceding unsigned comment was added by UBERxL33T (talk) • (contribs)

I think it means if you have 0 hours playtime in week 1 and 22 hours playtime in week 2, you can get upto 12 drops in week 2 and none in week 1. If you have 11+ hours of playtime in week 1 and 11+ hours in week 2 then you get up to 6 drops each week within the first 11 hours of each week. JakeSanchard 18:35, 9 April 2011 (UTC)
It means two weeks of playtime that would be counted towards drops. Let's assume that 6 hours a week will give you items drops. If this is the case, and you do not play for one week, then the next week, 12 hours will give you item drops. This does not carry over into the third week as 18 hours if you do not play that second week. --User Firestorm Flame.png Firestorm 19:51, 9 April 2011 (UTC)
I don't even think this works because I was gone for nearly a month and came back to only 8 drops for that week. Fowah 04:15, 1 July 2011 (PDT)

Reset time

Where does the time for the playtime cap reset come from? Because to me, it seems erroneous. I live in the Netherlands, so I am GMT +1/+2, depending on summer time, and for me it always seems to reset on Thursdays around 4 or 5 pm. I know this is merely anecdotal evidence and thus probably weighs naught in the grand scheme of things, but I do feel I should mention this because I might not be the only one that has experienced this. For clarification, by the way, I have tested several times by starting to idle in the morning on Thursdays, never lost connection and my first drop would only drop around 4/5 pm. This also includes the Double Drop Week, where I saw no drops for several hours and then stuff suddenly started dropping every 15 minutes, around 5 pm. -- Killicon train.png Hefaistus - talk 15:58, 22 June 2011 (UTC)

Tested it out two more times in the past two weeks, every time the drops don't happen till 5 pm. So can someone finally respond to this? Because at the moment I am half tempted to just remove the claim that the drop resets at midnight GMT, as I have yet to see any kind of proof of the supposed reset time. -- Killicon train.png Hefaistus - talk 03:56, 1 August 2011 (PDT)

Should this be mentioned?

I'm not sure if it's a bug, or if drop rates have actually been lowered, but it's definitely an issue:

BTYM 20:01, 29 June 2011 (PDT)

Yes there does appear to be some sort of glitch with the drop system (weird things happen to the items in my backpack), but this isn't noteworthy enough to go on the article as we can't say for sure there is something wrong. User Moussekateer signature sprite.pngMoussekateer·talk 20:03, 29 June 2011 (PDT)

Double Drop Rate Event Item Cap?

Does Double Drop Rate event increase the "cap"(well total quantity rather than playtime cap) of items dropped? I'd assumed it does since it's based on play time (10 hours) and not the amount of actual items obtained right? So instead of 30-70 minute would it be 15-35 minutes per item with a playtime cap of 10 hours? Goldfish 19:04, 7 July 2011 (PDT)

Drops no longer appearing in text chat

As of the July 18, 2011 Patch it appears that drops are no longer announced in the text chat. The same is true for crafting and trading. Should this be mentioned here? Jh9594 01:57, 28 July 2011 (PDT)

  • Never mind, this was a bug, fixed as of the August 2nd patch Jh9594 14:51, 2 August 2011 (PDT)
Still seems broken to me, if it was! Evang7 20:51, 12 August 2011 (PDT)
Yeah, its still broken, adding to "bugs" on the page. Jh9594 02:31, 15 August 2011 (PDT)

Planeswalker items--do they drop or not?

The pages for both the Planeswalker Goggles and the Planeswalker Helm list them as items that can drop. This page's dropdown list says that neither of them will drop. So, which is it? Evang7 20:51, 12 August 2011 (PDT)

All of the other genuine items that have gone "common" have been added to the drop system so I assume that they do drop. Boregano 21:06, 12 August 2011 (PDT)

Then we should remove them from the list of undroppable items. The Heros Hachimaki from Homefront is also marked in its page as droppable.Portugueseotaku 10:33, 17 August 2011 (PDT)

Items capped by unique ID or unique IP?

After a few months of experimenting with multiple idle accounts running at the same time on a network I've run into a few problems. First, there seems to be an arbitrary number of items each account can receive overnight. For example, I will idle several accounts and by complete random one will receive six items, one gets 8, and one maybe gets 10. If I continue to idle them throughout the entire day I will get absolutely nothing extra. Sometimes textmode idling simply no longer works after this point and I must revert to playing in 3d mode in a private server.

I've been recording the amount of items I received in a single session on each account for several weeks. I will idle three accounts on three separate computers every Wednesday night. The amount of items I would receive this way would range between 6-10 items per account. Recently I idled only two computers at night instead of three and I got a surprising difference. The pairs of accounts I idled per night received no less than 10-14 items in a single idling session.

This led me to the theory that items are not capped on an account-by-account basis but rather by IP address. Valve servers may see my IP getting more items than possible and are arbitrarily capping each account. However, that cap is usually somehow lifted in a short amount of time by evidence of the fact that I can simply change the method of idling and start receiving items again. I can only assume the action that relieves the cap is signing out of Steam. Can anyone confirm any of this to be true? Additionally, can anyone positively confirm that idling in a server alone increases the amount of time between item drops? I've only heard rumors of this being true and have yet to see anyone provide evidence. Sanitysama 03:40, 25 August 2011 (PDT)

I think you are right that it is by IP address, as me and my brother have separate accounts, but share the same computer, and we see a wide variation in the number of drops we each get per week Jh9594 16:44, 25 August 2011 (PDT)
The cap is a time based one not item count. You will not get the same amount of items from week to week or account to account, there's a variance. The article explains this, there is nothing surprising about your observations. User Moussekateer signature sprite.pngMoussekateer·talk 16:49, 25 August 2011 (PDT)
That's well and good but still doesn't answer the question the original question posed concerning items being dropped per account or per IP address. In a given drop period, regardless of the items dropped to time played ratio, are two or more people playing on separate accounts but on the same IP going to see a dramatically lower, on average, number of items dropped per account than a single account would in the same drop period being the only account on the IP? Grammar don't fail me now. From experience I believe the item drop system to be on a per IP address basis. My friend and I play, on separate accounts, but under the same IP. I play often and reach the point of slow/no item dropping sooner than they do while also acquiring consistently more items than they do. Anyway, neither of us idle, nor do we have any data yet to present as somewhat more solid evidence, however, I feel that the topic should be opened up to questioning again and perhaps more testing, myself included, be conducted. - Slimbob 01:56, 10 October 2011 (PDT)
There's no way the IPs from which you are connecting affect the drops that that account gets. Last week, my 10 accounts, all idled on the same IP address got; 7, 7, 6, 10, 10, 8, 5, 5, 6, and 8 items. This week; 12, 10, 9, 9, 13, 8, 8, 6, 5, and 6. I generally idle 5 accounts at a time, or do a 4/4/2 split over a period of 3 days. Each account is unique, and all my numbers from this calendar year show nothing to support such a theory. As much as I hate to say it, I will; random is random. SS2R 02:09, 11 October 2011 (PDT)

Unused time

How long does the unused time carry over? For example, if I don't play during week 1 and I play a week's worth of time in week 2, will week 3 still grant 2 weeks of item drops? (So in other words, still receiving 3 weeks worth of drops in 3 weeks.) BASEBALLFURIES 13:20, 25 August 2011 (PDT)

Isnt it, you have 10 or so hours per week of eligibility to receive drops, and any time that was not used during that week does not carry over. You just simply have a new week with 10 or so more hours to receive your drops for the week. I think it goes on a week by week basis with no carry over time, just every week has its own clock and if you don't use it, you have next weeks clock to work with. At least thats how I've always interpreted the system. User BC sigimage.png****BCtalk 15:05, 25 August 2011 (PDT)
No some time does carry over, but we have no idea how much. 'Some of your unused time will rollover to the following week, so if you're an intermittent player you'll also be fine' from this blog post. User Moussekateer signature sprite.pngMoussekateer·talk 15:12, 25 August 2011 (PDT)
If it helps answer the question, I've never seen an account that missed a drop period net more than 14 items outside of double drop periods. If the maximum cap is 12 then it's probably that only 2 to 4 items will carry over into the next week. Sanitysama 13:08, 6 February 2012 (PST)

Items in text chat

It has been almost 2 months since the drop notices were removed from the text chat. i seem to remember an unpdate where this was fixed (it wasn't), but the fix was removed from the changelog a short time later by valve. Can we assume that the drop nitifications missing thing is not a bug, but an intentional thing done by valve to allieviate trade spam? Jh9594 16:46, 25 August 2011 (PDT)

Item Drop List

Shouldn't the maul and three-rune blade be in the undroppable list? If not, then the September 20th 2011 patch needs to be changed to reflect that. Kodiak 7 19:03, 22 September 2011 (PDT)

Why, are they still undroppable? » Cooper Kid (blether·contreebs) 03:57, 23 September 2011 (PDT)
Regardless of whether they are or not, something is wrong. The undroppable list says they do drop, and the patch notes say they still don't. Kodiak 7 04:13, 23 September 2011 (PDT)
I've added them back to the list, they do not drop. User Moussekateer signature sprite.pngMoussekateer·talk 04:21, 23 September 2011 (PDT)


Item drops have been kind of slow since Manniversary update. I'm suspecting server problems since a lot of things were broken after the update, but at this moment I also suspect there could also be a change in drop conditions. Anyone have any input? Similar experiences? Sanitysama 23:08, 14 October 2011 (PDT)

Been watching Steam Stats and noticed volume has corresponded with TF2 performance. And, considering the volume i'm still getting 90% of expected items during my last idle session (actual 205, expected 225). So, nothing indicates any change to the drop system from my perspective.Nooch 11:07, 15 October 2011 (PDT)
I made an account to seek help in this field. Ever since the update, my idling has brought in almost nothing. What will usually happen is that I will get one item after about 2-3 hours of idling, then nothing. I can't offer much in the way of additional information other than the fact that I've idled enough to hit the idling caps of 4 accounts and got nothing out of it. Meanwhile, on another account, I idled without hindrance, getting about 10 or 11 out of it. However, that one was during regular play. Any ideas on what could be messing up my idling? Screamineagles 12:38, 18 October 2011 (PDT)
No item drop problems here, seems like you've been just unlucky because the servers crashed when you idled. They were quite unstable over the weekend. --Picard talk 12:47, 18 October 2011 (PDT)
Yep, figured it out, came back to delete my post but I figure anyone having the same problem could get useful information from it. Turns out I was just losing connection to the steam servers / item servers crashed. Thanks for the reassurance. Screamineagles 19:34, 18 October 2011 (PDT)

Check remaining drop time?

I'm just curious, is there any way (within TF2 or otherwise) to check the remaining weekly drop time for an account?

I don't believe so at the moment. NihonTiger 16:04, 15 October 2011 (PDT)

Likelihood of receiving non weapon items (e.g. hats, paint)

Is there any information regarding the drop rates of specific items or item types? Like, if there's 0.5% chance of getting paint and a 3% chance of getting a hat, or something? Monkeyfetus 13:40, 16 October 2011 (PDT)

Item Chances?

If there isn't a section already on it, I think this would be a great place for there to be a chart or some statistics on how likely it is you will find: an item, a specific item, a hat, a specific hat, any/specific paint and the individual other drop-able tools. (and by specific I don't mean a different number for each hat, just the chance per drop of getting the hat that you want) Massive Mountain of Hat 16:25, 16 October 2011 (PDT)

I agree. When i read that when valve changed the drop system to a weekly cap it says that they increased the chances of getting a hat. But what were the chances before? And what are they now? Are newer items more likely to drop? Is there a limit to the number of hats that you can get per week/month/whatever? Bakkerthehacker 16:49, 30 October 2011 (PDT)
Would certainly be interesting. I've always thought that there's a slightly higher chance of finding an item if you already have it - my brother found 5 Bazaar Bargains in a row after the Uber Update. Though unfortunately we don't really have any way of knowing how the item drop system works. The only way to figure this kind of thing out is to collect statistics, which would be a long process and not necessarily very accurate. » Cooper Kid (blether) • (contreebs) 01:46, 31 October 2011 (PDT)
There is loads of data from opening crates. I dont see how it would be any harder to gather some data about item drops. It would seem to be easier as you dont have to buy keys or anything. Just idle accounts and record the items recieved. Bakkerthehacker 13:52, 31 October 2011 (PDT)
For what it's worth, in my experience achievement-unlockable items seem to have a much higher drop chance if you have none left in your inventory (for example you had one Equalizer left and crafted it away.) Anyone else noticed this? Dreamdayer 14:18, 26 June 2012 (PDT)
I second this motion. I would especially like to know what my chances are of getting a hat or miscellaneous item as opposed to a weapon, as so far I can only recall having one hat dropped and no miscellaneous items. I also seem to mostly get achievement or other duplicate weapons from the drop system, forcing me to trade with others for the weapons I want. Gosh Josh (talk) 19:05, 6 October 2013 (PDT)


I know crates don't count for the item drop cap, but is there anyway to figure out how often they drop? For example, I try to average around the same playtime everyweek and I would guess I get about 2-3 crates per week. But with the halloween update, I've been playing an overwhelmingly increased amount (even if most of that was gift waiting) and haven't received a crate since before my item drop cap was seemingly reached. I would guess in all my extra playing, I would have received a few more crates. BASEBALLFURIES 19:03, 2 November 2011 (PDT)

Halloween 2011 items

Seeing as how the Ghastly Gibus and the Ghastlier Gibus are a part of the "Items that cannot be found via a random drop" list, shouldn't the Ghastlierest Gibus be added to the list too? And shouldn't the various Halloween 2011 hats/miscellaneous items also be added to the list? Tahtorak09:00, 9 November 2011 (PDT)

Playtime over 11 hours

I play TF2 *All* the time, so my average playtime is way more than 11 hours, but does that cap my pickups, as in I get less items than under 11 hours or what? Thank you if you answer. Lukeme99 10:28, 13 January 2012 (PST)

Crates no longer drop in textmode

It seems as if crates are no longer dropping for those that exclusively use the -textmode switch to idle. I've got sufficient amounts of data to back this as the accounts I use have not received a single crate since before the Jan. 4th drop period nor during the current Jan. 11th drop period. It may or may not be something worth mentioning here in the item drop system page or as a small snippet on the Idling page.

It's my personal theory that Valve is working on making crates more valuable to test the players' incentive towards buying keys to open them. It's the sort of psychological experiment that Valve is known to perform. One of their methods must involve disabling the distribution of crates to accounts that only exist for the creation of extra items. Logically this would create an overwhelming amount of extra crates entered into the system; specifically given to those who aren't interested in them, therefore lowering the perceived value of a single crate. Sanitysama 13:33, 18 January 2012 (PST)

Crates still drop in textmode - I got one last night, however the drop rate seems to have significantly decreased since xmas. -RJ 13:54, 18 January 2012 (PST)
I found the odds of receiving no crates across ten accounts for two weeks exceptionally strange. However it seems you're right, crates will still drop but it's a very low chance. I'll get 0-1 on any account as opposed to the guaranteed 2 per week that used to drop. It also seems like the odds of receiving a low item cap have also increased as none of my accounts have managed to net very many items like they used to. Sanitysama 13:02, 6 February 2012 (PST)

Has the drop timespan decreased? Corrections needed?

Although the article says 11hrs, in my case it's been ~7hrs for two consecutive weeks, on two accounts. After that nothing and it resulted in 6-7 items received. Has anyone else experienced something like this? Tazer 17:29, 19 January 2012 (PST)

I've had two accounts where one has idled for almost 48 hours and gotten 3 items, the other for 7 hours gotten 20 items. So I'm a bit confused right now.Nibelhim 16:04, 31 January 2012 (PST)
The drop frequency is another question, because according to the article the maximum time you should wait between new items is ~70 min. Coming back to drop timespan, in my another week the items dropped for 7-8hrs again. So it's again few good hours short from what the article says and on Steam Forums one person said that 7hrs is his average as well. Also, as pointed out above it seems that reset time is Thursday 15.00 GMT, not midnight. Recently my first items started to drop ~15:30 and ~15:50 and I'm based in the UK, GMT+0, so no error possible. I'm new to TF2, but I guess there should be some new research and verification of information given as many refer to the wiki, perhaps incorectly. Tazer 11:41, 1 February 2012 (PST)
UPDATE: It's Thursday midnight and... drops occured on my main account. Interesting thing is that it's been a month since I started playing. The account itself is much older, though it's been a month since I got my first items from drops, earned first achievements etc. Could it be related to this? Will my drop timespan be 11hrs now? Since I proposed some research, it seems like I'll have to do some research on my own, from fresh-mature account perspective. Tazer 17:19, 1 February 2012 (PST)

I'd also like a bit of info on this topic, as I've not heard about the account's age or how long TF2 has been on the account affecting the period of time in which you receive your weekly drops. My Steam account itself was registered in April 2006 and TF2 was added to the account late November or early December if I recall correctly, but my playing of TF2 was very sporadic and I only have 139.1 Hours played total, and am just getting back into a TF2 phase. What affect does that have on the timespan in which my items are received if I've tended to play for roughly 6-8 hours daily for the past few days? Dvsilverwing 18:21, 7 February 2012 (PST)

I hope to have more observations tomorrow. I have few theses, but I need to try them out and see if they are consistent this week. As both of my previously mentioned accounts are "in play" more than a month now (because my main accont was created in 2010 along with Orange Box, I just didn't play TF2 back then) my first thing to test will be if drops occur after midnight on two accouts this time. Last week it was Thursday midnight and in fact ~10hrs on my "mature" account, and Thursday 15.00 GMT and only ~5hrs on my "fresh" account. In the mean time, I just happen to got yet another "fresh" account and I'll check there as well if I can. Anyway Dvsilverwing, as you seem to fit my "mature" account theory, can you check what time, even roughtly, you start getting your items? Of course, anybody is free to add their bit, the only division I'm looking for is wheter the account is less or more than a month since the actual start of playing TF2, i.e. first drops, achievements etc. Like I said, I have to wait and test if my theories are rather valid, or just plain nonsense. Tazer 08:47, 8 February 2012 (PST)
Okay, here's what I got: My theory was that after 1 month of playing items start dropping at Thursday midnight and drop for ~10 hrs, as stated in the article. My main account started dropping items at 00.00 GMT and dropped them for ~9hrs, second account, now over month in play dropped for ~10hrs but started at ~15.00 GMT as always, and my newest account under 2 weeks in play started way before 15.00 GMT (I assume it would start at midnight, just couldn't test it) and dropped items for ~7hrs. Conclusions? Well, my "midnight-big drops-if above month" theory failed, as items seemed to drop for longer timespan for accounts over 1 month in play, but the time was different. For my fresh account the time it starts dropping items is (and maybe always was) probably midnight, so fresh-mature theory is irrelevant and the time seems to be random, or at least sets to midnight at random moment. As for now, I can probably only further test if accounts over 1 month in play get the item timespan fixed at ~9-10 hrs or maybe they will continue to get ~6-7hrs as well as when they were fresh (so basically, whether the timespan is random or not for older accounts). I can also test if accounts that once started to drop items after midnight can get "reverted" to 15.00 (so basically if the time is random as well). And once again, all obvservations from other people are welcomed. Tazer 12:44, 10 February 2012 (PST)

I've only gotten 1 item the past 2 months... User:Sweddy409

Extremely Outdated Information, I Want to Edit The Main Page

I have been testing the item drop system for months now and removing all the variables i can. I have the perfect guide for the perfect method of farming. The problem is that all the info on this wiki page is extremely outdated. There is also another wiki for tf2 that causes confusion and is lacking far too much information. Im asking what you guys think of my proposal. Heres my idea... I will edit the original page in a manner that leaves all the original information citations and everything as is. But i would like to add a new section to the top because the item drop system has changed since the most recent mention on the main page of the item drop system changing. I have enough info to break down the drops and their drop rate down to a science, the only thing i cant keep track of and post is the drop rate/percentages for the likely hood that a specific item or type of item will drop. I will continue to do research in the following months and posting and updating my findings. Im a very dedicated fan, player and trader, so i would love to keep this page up to speed since i come across far too many people that dont understand how the drop system works due to the amount of rumors and outdated information floating around the net, and the lack of knowledge that a lot of people have preventing them from finding this important info. I currently test my farming on a weekly or biweekly basis with my 8 accounts so i have plenty of room to further test the drop system.

I can give more example of my findings and post it all here before i update the main page with my findings, if anyone thinks i should. What do you guys think the best way of approaching this would be? Should i go ahead and edit the main page as i mentioned, or should i just keep my findings here buried under the mountains of text? The Mad Hatta 5:31am PST, 02-29-2012

→Do it. This page is crucial to people who need information on the item drop system, and the more the info is outdated, the worse of a job this page is doing in it's purpose to give out information. Spoobiff 07:19, 24 April 2012 (PDT)

Not having the required drop?

I've been idling on Wednesday, and i got 1 weapon and 1 crate. I idled longer and then i didn't receive anything. Are crates like worth the weapon by more? Or is it that there's an error? Because I have been trading with other people, and i'm starting to think that trading affects drops now. Help please. Yukkurirumia 4:09 PST

I've been having the same problem, 1 weapon and one crate and then cutting off. Besides, I haven't traded in over a week now. It's probably a bug that Gaben doesn't want to fix.

In fact none of the players on the servers I go to are getting items. EMD SD90ACe 05:31, 25 March 2012 (PDT)

Cozy Camper seems to drop

I think we can remove it from the Items that cannot be found via a random drop table.
I scan lot of drops for my project and I already saw some of them dropping : 1, 2, 3 (no Craft No. or Uncraftable tag). Nemesis BLU.png DaTa 12:21, 26 March 2012 (PDT)

Need to add some items to the Do Not Drop List

Items that Do not drop:

Quality: Stranges Tools: Strange Parts

I would add them myself, but unfortunately it is outside of my ability.Reverend 02:27, 28 March 2012 (PDT)

Also add the Last Breath and the Apparition's Aspect.Reverend 02:36, 28 March 2012 (PDT)

A Does drop list

Seems a bit redundant with having a does not drop list but I think adding one would still be beneficial... there are just so many items now and players who hate crafting numbers (such as myself) may also find it useful. BASEBALLFURIES 01:41, 9 April 2012 (PDT)

So Stranges can drop?

According to the Does not drop list, Stranges can drop. Is this correct? Because I've never gotten one yet (although, I just recently got a premium account, and it may be a premium account only thing). —BobMathrotus (talk) 11:59, 4 July 2012 (PDT)

Only obtain via uncrate. User Hinaomi Hinaomi-sig.png Hinaomi (talk) - (contributions) 12:42, 4 July 2012 (PDT)
Pictogram tick.png Fixed the list to reflect this. rZ 13:13, 4 July 2012 (PDT)
Well, in that case, that means the only quality that can drop is Unique, right? Rather than making a "Quality" row in the table, shouldn't we just state that all drops are of Unique quality, then? —BobMathrotus (talk)
Hmm, never thought of that. I'll implement this rZ 06:58, 11 July 2012 (PDT)

Increased drop rates (Pyromania Update)

i think the drop cap is removed, in the last twelve hours i received 35 items and 1 hat. has anyone else got many drops lately? --Lordcat33 07:04, 8 July 2012 (PDT)

Please avoid to use capital letters. It make most people don't want to read. User Hinaomi Hinaomi-sig.png Hinaomi (talk) - (contributions) 07:13, 8 July 2012 (PDT)
uhm, what the firetruck? --Lordcat33 08:24, 8 July 2012 (PDT)
It makes most people think you're not friendly user =_=" User Hinaomi Hinaomi-sig.png Hinaomi (talk) - (contributions) 08:26, 8 July 2012 (PDT)
The drop cap has not been removed. rZ 08:28, 8 July 2012 (PDT)

Tine zone correction

I went ahead and made a change to the TIme zone info.

Eastern STANDARD time is 5 hours behind GMT - so 0:00 Thursday is 7pm Wednesday EST Eastern DAYLIGHT time is 4 hours behind GMT - so 0:00 Thursday is 8pm Wednesday EST

Goonybird 18:26, 25 July 2012 (PDT)

Mann up mode(no drop cap?)

So I have ben having fun playing mann up mode but in the past week I have racked up a good 30ish weapons and a hat. I was just wondering if there was a cap on item drops in the mann up mode? If there is a cap I think it is much higher than the cap in the normal tf2 multiplayer. Greyson194 08:08, 1 September 2012 (PDT)

- I've been playing team fortress for about 2 hours and haven't gotten any drops. i know I haven't hit my cap because the item drop reset today.. Can someone tell me what's wrong?

In answer to the first question, i'm pretty sure that the TF2 drop is system is the same across everything. (Bloody hell, nice drops!) In answer to the second question; Don't worry, this has happened to me before and a friend just recently. The item drop system is incredibly random, so it's hard to predict what you'll get and when you'll get it. Silverleaf81 16:18, 27 December 2012 (PST)

Free to play users

I'm not so sure about this part of the page: "Under the Free-To-Play system introduced in the Über Update, free players receive only limited item drops (with no rare or cosmetic items) until they upgrade to Premium status, upon which they gain access to the full item drop system". As my free to play friend recently had a Medic taunt drop.Or is that not considered 'rare'? Softs 09:46, 26 September 2012 (PDT)

F2P will drop only weapons and tools, Taunt counts as tools. User Hinaomi Hinaomi-sig.png Hinaomi (talk) • (contributions) 11:16, 26 September 2012 (PDT)

6 Items 555 hours gamplay what is going on

Okay I played today and ive been playing for a long time and know how many items i should get round 7 up to 10 but today i got only 6 items and i never got any other alerts except once and that alert was messed up. what im wondering is what was going on cause even while i was playing my item server went down... alot i was wondering if steam was updateing or what just please respond and tell me Spideyboy36c 21:57, 27 September 2012 (PDT)

See the graph, nothing told that you can get 7-10 items in 1 week drop. It's the possible of the how many items you'll got from drop, not absolutely. (I played 2874 hr and I still got around 6-10 items drop per week) User Hinaomi Hinaomi-sig.png Hinaomi (talk) • (contributions) 22:08, 27 September 2012 (PDT)

Pile of curses is a non-dropping item

Can someone please add this at the non-dropping list ?Loloweb 05:33, 21 November 2012 (PST)Loloweb

GMT, are you sure?

I noticed that the article reads "The system resets each player's playtime cap every Thursday at approximately 00:00 Greenwich Mean Time (GMT)". I was questioning where this fact came from. My best guess is that the time zone is actually UTC. The main difference is that GMT has daylight savings where as UTC doesn't. The only time I have seen UTC used is by people who live in england.

I haven't checked this as I would have to wait until the next daylight savings time and even then I wouldn't know how.

I am fairly certain though that it is UTC though and would like to propose this line instead.

"The system resets each player's playtime cap every Thursday at approximately 00:00 {{W|Coordinated Universal Time}} (UTC)"

Kevincox 16:40, 30 November 2012 (PST) GMT is the same as UTC, only different in its derivation which is not relevant here. GMT is still GMT even when the British use BST during the summer.User:UltimateTerabyte 09:49, 29 December 2012 (PST)

Is there a limit to crates dropping?

Well, is there, or can you endlessly idle for multiple crates (useful for event crates)? Timmy Minecraft 15:57, 17 December 2012 (PST)

There is a limit. Crate drops have their own counter. So similar to regular drops they will eventually stop dropping. Ashes 18:02, 17 December 2012 (PST)
Then I think people should do tests to find out just how many you can get, like how there's a section devoted to the cap of weapons (and Hats?). Example, "It has been estimated that a maximum of 5 to 12 items can be found each week." Then later it says " Mann Co. Supply Crates and other usable items drop on a separate timer, meaning that these items do not affect the interval between regular drops." Hopefully if people do tests, they'd get results, and be able to put, "It has been estimated that a maximum of 5 to 12 items can be found a week, while crates, tools (and Hats?) have a minimum and maximum drop result/setting/whatever of ??? and ??? respectively." Would a member of the community kindly do these tests? Timmy Minecraft 18:16, 17 December 2012 (PST)
That sort of test would be difficult as getting info would have to be months worth of data. Also hats fall under normal drops. So they drop with weapons. Tool and action items I'm not sure if they fall under normal as well. Crates I believe drop like 3-5 weekly but it could be inaccurate. Ashes 00:56, 18 December 2012 (PST)

I got above the 13 items I assumed was the max

So, I idle every week, with idle accounts. When I used TF2B to check the drops on one of the accounts, it said I got 23 new items. When I took away the number of crates I received, I realized I'd gotten 16 weapons. I assume people have gotten more than 13 before, but can we get some info on this? I can provide a screenshot of my drops if necessary. Timmy Minecraft 09:40, 29 December 2012 (PST)

This may have been overlapping items in your backpack being redropped, or a miscount. Missing a week causes drops to roll over. Feel free to provide links to screenshots, you will also need to demonstrate you idled the week before and you had no pending incoming completed trades. User:UltimateTerabyte 09:44, 29 December 2012 (PST)

Well, I don't fully understand the overlapping items but I assume it means that it shows 1 item dropped twice, but all the weapon drops are unique (Different items, not unique quality) and two #54's, 53's and 52's dropped twice, so those might overlap (If that's what it means). I usually try to idle all I can on all the accounts with use of SandBoxie, so I might have missed a week on that account. I also don't trade items to my idles, just from. Link: Timmy Minecraft 20:55, 29 December 2012 (PST)

Erroneous information

I removed erroneous information regarding the drop system. There is also no proof that you are guaranteed to get 5 - 12 items per week, the only reason why I'm not taking down the images is because I don't want to screw up the format of the page by accident if I do so. Odin(Reborn) 16:58, 11 January 2013 (PST)

This post on explains the current drop system, whereby players are guaranteed a certain number of items within a certain period of time. Granted there's no exact figure given, but those graphs on the article were made using real data, so at least give reasonably probable drop rates. » Cooper Kid (blether) • (contreebs) 18:55, 11 January 2013 (PST)

Will EVER any weapons disappear from the drop system?

So, just like what happened with those retired hats. Right now, I craft any duplicate I have to Metal, but if e.g. Shortstop is going to retire, then those 2 Shortstops worth 1 Scrap would cost a shitload and it would have been such a waste. Does anyone know if this has any chance of happening and has it ever happened before? I started Playing TF2 2 years ago so I don't know anything. Thanks! Xbenas 05:39, 13 February 2013 (PST)

There's no way we can know. Anyway, I doubt they'd do something like this; afterall, weapons are mostly gameplay-focused and hats are purely cosmetic.  –  Epic Eric (T | C) 05:46, 13 February 2013 (PST)

Cosmetic items?

I'm wondering what you mean with cosmetic items. Do you mean that tags and painting cans are cosmetic items? I'm wondering because i am a f2p and i got a description tag recently. Kalle198 05:23, 17 March 2013 (PDT)

Cosmetic items are items which do not have a purpose or effect on gameplay. Items such as hats and miscs and cosmetic items. Tags and Paint cans are tools, which change items in your backpack. Ophyzarr 05:30, 17 March 2013 (PDT)

drop system changes or something maybe possibly???

the drop system was changed in the July 10, 2013 patch

(source: (read the next pages too ))

apparently you have to confirm each drop before you get new ones? Osku958 (talk) 14:25, 12 July 2013 (PDT)

Yes, it appears that the drop system now requires you to accept the item so that it is no longer in the unplaced inventory before you can receive any more drops. User Moussekateer signature sprite.pngMoussekateer·talk 17:17, 12 July 2013 (PDT)

Item Cap

The drop is 10 hours every week right and you can get one from 30-70 minutes. Doesn't that mean you can get 8-20 items per week. Wetro (talk) 13:47, 3 September 2013 (PDT)

In theory yes, in practice no. It's extremely unlikely that someone will go on a run of an item every 30mins or 70mins. They might also lose connection to the server and other such factors.

The preceding unsigned comment was added by Moussekateer (talk) • (contribs) 21:59, 3 September 2013

Items being announced in chat after already been delivered to inventory

This is a bug I find myself running into more often than not. I'm certain that others have noticed that some items will be delivered to their inventory but will not be announced until a later time. (Such as MvM rewards). Is there any specific cause for this? Archeodemon (talk) 20:49, 29 December 2013 (PST)

Drop system is broken again.

Ok, they sad they fixed the problem, but no. I have only gotten 1 item the last two months, the gunslinger. I meet all of the criteria, but i still don't seen to get any items. If anybody knows what the problem is, tell me. The preceding unsigned comment was added by Sweddy409 (talk) • (contribs)

This page isn't really a great place to ask this. You'll probably get more of a better response on the steam forums. Ashes (talk) 15:51, 28 February 2014 (PST)

Yeah, i did that after this. The preceding unsigned comment was added by Sweddy409 (talk) • (contribs)

Is it possible to do this?

Is there any way to 'balance' the drop system so it tends to give you more items for one class than the others?

Lewleworange (talk) 11:33, 16 March 2014 (PDT)

Not possible. Drop system is completely random on drops. Modifying the drop system is only done by valve. Ashes (talk) 11:35, 16 March 2014 (PDT)


Is there a percentage for an item type to drop? Like a percent of cosmetics to drop? Or weapons? Or something like that? If there is, can you PLEASE add a table? M15513c0mm4nd (talk) 14:57, 21 September 2014 (PDT)

There is no confirmed percentage. Its pretty much pure random. Even if we made a table, it would be all speculation and false information. Ashes (talk) 14:58, 21 September 2014 (PDT)

The Numbers of Drops is Constant not Variable

Always 9 items. Either 9 items or 8 items + 1 crate/box. IDS (item drop system) won't give more than 9 drops. I've tested this by a p2p account and a f2p account. Also, I asked other players, and they said 8–9 is max. Also interval does not affect the numbers of drops. For example, If you have 7 items and you reach 10 hours limit, IDS will give 2 items immediatley to reach its 9-item cap. And if you get all 9 items by 30-minute intervals (4.5 hours), there is no more item in the remaining 5.5 hours. Note1: I think gamers should play different multiplayer modes and MVM maps to get more than 9 items. Note2: it looks like that Achievement items count as drop too (bug). --Zyma (talk) 18:56, 28 March 2015 (PDT)

The only bit of this that seems true is mentioning that if you hit your drop limit you won't get any more items. I've had some weeks where I've got 5 drops, and some weeks where I've got 10 drops (like this week, I got 8 weapon drops on my main account, and no crates at all). After Valve most recently changed the drop system, the game hasn't given me more than 1 drop in one go, and I only get drops in quick succession if I missed getting one of them. Different gamemodes don't have any impact on item drops (the closest to it is MVM giving you items for completing a mission/tour, but that's separate to drops). Achievement items have no impact on it either, as I got a bunch of the items on an alt account a while ago and I still got a full set of item drops. --Omolong (talk) 19:11, 28 March 2015 (PDT)
Just to complement that I only got 6 weapons on this week's drop, and I didn't got any crate either (they don't count as the cap limit, though, just to let you know). It seems to be variable, but one thing I'm certain of, is that the time between one drop to another has increased after the Idle Threat solution, you dropped pretty quickly before, now it may takes to half an hour to one hour, but I guess this is also variable. User Gabrielwoj Signature 1.pngUser Gabrielwoj Signature 2.png - User Gabrielwoj Signature 3.png 19:51, 28 March 2015 (PDT)
So you say "cap limit is variable" and "the limit is random for players every week"? For example, one player may receive only 5 items, and another player may receive 12 items? But even by 70-minute intervals, 8 drops is minimum. Is minimum variable too? --Zyma (talk) 09:14, 29 March 2015 (PDT)