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How can I setup TF2 so that two players (myself and someone inexperienced with FPS) can both play in a map against bots, but not people.

I guess I need to hunt through the internet list trying to find servers that are populated and checking namelists to see if they look like bots.

The offline practice probably won't work as that looks like single player.

Any advice on how best to do this, or just tips to make finding a server on the internet list like this a bit easier would be greatly appreciated.

We're on the same LAN, so maybe there's a way of hosting a LAN game that both me & the other person can join?

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I'm guessing hosting your own server is not an option. –  Ronan Forman Jul 24 '11 at 12:54
not sure - I'll have to look into what the requirements are for hosting (specs etc.) –  Durathor Jul 24 '11 at 13:21
its not much, ill message a mate of mine who has down it and get him to reply here –  TrewTzu Jul 24 '11 at 14:05

3 Answers 3

up vote 29 down vote accepted

Here is an instruction on how to create a server and put bots on it:

  1. Make sure you have the port 27015 accessible for connections.
    How? Look here.
  2. Open the game console.
    How? Options⇨Keyboard⇨Advanced...⇨Enable developer console. Press ~ / ` to open the console at any time.
  3. Optional Type sv_lan 0 if you want the game to be public, or sv_lan 1 for LAN only.
    Public server is recommended
  4. Type map <mapname>, replacing <mapname> with the name of the map you want to play.
    Or press the [+] to the right of BROWSE SERVERS in main menu instead.
  5. Optional If the server is public and you don't want anyone to intrude, you can set a password:
    Type sv_password <pass>, replacing <pass> with some simple password.
    (e.g. sv_password 1234)
  6. Set the bot difficulty: tf_bot_difficulty <x>, where <x> is from 0 (the easiest) to 3.
    (e.g. tf_bot_difficulty 0)
  7. Add bots: tf_bot_add <team> <class>
    <team>: red | blue
    <class>: scout | soldier | pyro | demoman | heavyweapons | engineer | medic | sniper | spy
    (e.g. tf_bot_add blue heavyweapons)
    To remove all bots: tf_bot_kick all

Here are some ways for your friend to connect. If one fails, try the next one.

  • Join the game via Steam.
    In Steam Friends list press ▼ and Join Game.
  • In console: connect <ip>:27015, where <ip> is your (server's) IP address.
    (e.g. connect
  • Try the same thing with your (server's) local IP address (find it in Windows/Linux)

If nothing works, see the step 1 of server creation instruction.

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Why is a public server (sv_lan 0) recommended for just playing over a LAN? –  Nick T Jul 25 '11 at 14:00
@NickT: There can be more problems with local connection than with internet one. You can try what suits best, but I don't know if your network is good, so I'm listing all options. Also, see 5. –  BlaXpirit Jul 25 '11 at 14:05
@BlaXpirit - Thanks - this looks like a great guide, including all the daft questions I was struggling with (how to open the console, etc). It'll be the weekend till I can try again with my friend, so I'll post back after that, with how it goes :) –  Durathor Jul 25 '11 at 19:38
@Durathor: What about accepting the answer? –  BlaXpirit Jul 31 '11 at 14:52
I've been able to test most of the answer, but haven't been able to test it with my friend yet, so can't say that it is fully tested and therefore accepted. I've upvoted already and will accept this as soon as I've been able to confirm it –  Durathor Aug 3 '11 at 10:45

The TF2 wiki has a page that lists the commands, AI and supported maps that bots can be used on. You do not need cheats to be on to use this type of bot. But puppet bots do.

So you start the server, join a team, say RED. Then type into the console:

tf_bot_add blue

Your friend joins and selects team RED too. Then type:

tf_bot_add 13

You will then have 8 people on both teams.

If you wish to change the difficulty of the bots, before adding the first bot type:


Followed by the difficulty as a number. 0=easy 3=expert (default 1=normal)

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The offline practice probably won't work as that looks like single player.

It actually runs an actual server on your machine that appears to be joinable to everyone in the world with the proper forwarding setup.

enter image description here

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So if I start an offline game, they should be able to connect as we're on the same LAN? –  Durathor Jul 24 '11 at 15:07
@Durathor Yes, if the "IPv4 unspecified" kool aid Windows is serving me translates to "" then the server will accept connections no matter what address they come from. –  badp Jul 24 '11 at 15:35
Hmm didn't immediately work - couldn't see it in the LAN tab on the 2nd player, and sending a game invite led to 'unable to connect to server <my public IP>. I may need to do various port forwarding / translation for that. As an alternative I tried doing 'create server'. Which started a game my friend could join. But I couldn't, just left looking at the 2fort bridge from on high. And couldn't figure out how to add bots either. I've been googling a fair bit about this and can't find a single good tutorial.... –  Durathor Jul 24 '11 at 19:32
@dhblah What IP are you using? It should start with eiter 192 or 10; for example, –  badp May 18 '13 at 16:30
well, i tried connect to local IP ( and it worked! thanks –  dhblah May 19 '13 at 14:26

protected by fredley Mar 6 '14 at 18:12

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