Unofficial & Official Servers
Q: Do I need to buy anything to play Mann vs. Machine?
No. You can play the game as much as you like on any unofficial server. All Missions are available for free, and all play time in Mann vs. Machine will count toward your standard timed loot drops.
Q: What's the difference between unofficial and official servers?
When you play Mann vs. Machine on an official server, you will be able to earn special item rewards and track your progress through various Missions. Playing on an official server is called Mann Up Mode. To enter Mann Up Mode, you must possess a Tour of Duty Ticket.
Missions & Tours of Duty
Q: What is a Mission?
A Mission is a set of robot attack waves staged on a single map. A Mission is “completed” when your team survives the entire set of waves in a single session.
Q: What is a Tour of Duty?
A Tour of Duty is a collection of Missions that may span multiple maps. Tours of Duty only exist on official servers.
Tickets & Badges
Q: What is a Tour of Duty Ticket?
A Tour of Duty Ticket gives you access to any Tour of Duty in Mann Up Mode, and can be purchased from the Mann Co. Store for $0.99. You do not need a Tour of Duty Ticket to play Mann vs. Machine on unofficial servers (i.e.: not in Mann Up Mode).
Q: What is a Tour of Duty Badge?
Tour of Duty Badges are like MvM-specific save files: They track and store your progress through Tours of Duty. Every Tour of Duty has its own specific Badge. Badges are automatically granted to you the first time you successfully complete a Mission in a Tour of Duty while in Mann Up Mode. Each successful Mission will be marked as completed on your Tour of Duty Badge.
Q: How do I get loot?
When you complete an entire Tour of Duty, you'll receive a random rare item reward and an upgraded Tour of Duty of a higher rank, allowing you to complete each Mission again to earn more items.
Q: Do the new items earned in Mann Up Mode affect gameplay?
No. All items unique to Mann Up Mode are cosmetic. They are equippable throughout all of TF2, and are tradable.
Q: How do I earn these items?
There are three ways to earn Mann Up Mode items:
  1. Each time you complete an unfinished Mission on your Tour of Duty in Mann Up Mode, you'll earn an item. This will consume the Tour of Duty Ticket you presented to enter Mann Up Mode.
  2. When you complete all of the Missions on a Tour of Duty, you’ll earn a random rare item. These rare items can only be obtained by completing ALL Missions in a Tour of Duty.
  3. You can also obtain items using Squad Surplus Vouchers (see below).
Q: What is a Squad Surplus Voucher?
If you present a Squad Surplus Voucher prior to starting a Mission in Mann Up Mode and then beat the Mission, you and every person on your team will receive an item, even if they did not present a Voucher themselves. Squad Surplus Vouchers are available in the Mann Co. Store for $1.99.
Q: Can a Squad Surplus Voucher be redeemed when not in Mann Up Mode?
No. Vouchers can only be redeemed in Mann Up Mode.
Q: What if more than one person on my team uses a Squad Surplus Voucher?
Everyone on your team will receive an ADDITIONAL item for each Voucher used. For example, if all six players in a Mission use a Voucher, everyone will receive six extra items upon completing the Mission. If only one person uses a Voucher, then everyone will receive one extra item upon completing the Mission. If the Mission is NOT completed, no Vouchers will be consumed, and no items will be granted.
Q: Are my Tickets or Vouchers consumed even if we lose the game or are disconnected?
No. Tour of Duty Tickets and Squad Surplus Vouchers are ONLY consumed upon successful completion of a Mission. If you do not beat the Mission for any reason, then your Tickets and Vouchers will not be consumed and can be used again later.
Q: What if I complete a Mission that I have already completed on my Tour of Duty Badge?
In this case, your Tour of Duty Ticket will not be consumed, and your Tour of Duty progress will not be updated. Squad Surplus Vouchers, however, will always be redeemed for items when a Mission is completed successfully.
Abandoning Games
Q: What is "abandoning" a game?
There is a difference between leaving a game and "abandoning" it. It is considered "abandoning" a game if all of the following circumstances are met:
  • You leave a game while playing a Mann Up game on an official server; and
  • You have not played through a single wave to completion or failure; and
  • There are 5 or more players currently connected to the server (including you).
Otherwise, it is safe to disconnect a game without being considered an "abandoner."
Q: What happens if I "abandon" a game?
At first, nothing. (Sometimes you lose your Internet connection and cannot get back online to rejoin. And sometimes, you just have to go.) Penalties will be imposed on players who repeatedly abandon games. These players will be temporarily placed in a low-priority pool and will experience longer matchmaking times.
Q: If I'm thinking about leaving a game, how can I tell if I'd be "abandoning" it?
When you press the Disconnect button on the Main Menu, a prompt will confirm one of three things: that you are not abandoning the game and that it is safe to leave; that you are abandoning the game but will not incur a penalty; or that you are abandoning the game and will incur matchmaking penalties by disconnecting.

Note that leaving a game by pressing the Disconnect button ensures that you will never incur a penalty without prior warning. However, if you disconnect through any other means, such as typing "disconnect" or "quit" on the console, or by accepting a Steam invite, no prompt will be displayed, and you may incur penalties without being notified.
Q: What if I crash or lose my connection?
If you crash or lose your Internet connection, your spot on the game server will be reserved for you to rejoin within three minutes. If you do not rejoin within three minutes, you will be treated as if you had quit the game intentionally.

After a crash or loss of Internet connection, restarting TF2 will give you a prompt to reclaim your spot. This prompt will also tell you what (if any) penalties you will incur by declining.

If you meet the abandonment criteria outlined above ("What is "abandoning" a game?"), AND if you fail to rejoin either because you let three minutes go by or you declined the prompt, then you are considered to have abandoned the game.
Q: What if I get kicked for idling?
If you are automatically kicked due to inactivity, you are considered to have quit intentionally. You may be considered to have abandoned the game if the other abandonment criteria ("What is "abandoning" a game?") are satisfied.
Q: What if I'm vote-kicked?
If you are vote-kicked by other players, you are not considered to have quit intentionally and will not be considered to have abandoned the game.