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Guide to Giving Stuff Away with ModBot.

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listen to the mad man
What is ModBot?
ModBot is a GAF posting bot that you can use to give away games or anything else to your fellow users. You are not obligated to use ModBot, feel free to use other giveaway services or none at all. But it can save you time and keep your keys safe. If you post game keys in a thread, they will be immediately and anonymously claimed, most likely by people who do not have GAF accounts. The thread will become a derail as users with accounts try to claim the keys and find they are already taken. Then, you will have to edit out your post to reflect this fact. ModBot saves you the trouble.

With a ModBot giveaway, after one quick private message to ModBot, you have a secure, encrypted way to give away your games, see who claimed them, and apply rules to restrict winners to certain categories of user. ModBot will automatically edit out games as they are claimed. It is public, fair, accountable, and easy to use.

Haven't I seen ModBot lock threads before? What's the secret?
ModBot also has moderation functions. Moderators and Administrators can use ModBot to do a variety of administrative functions faster, especially when moderating from mobile devices. One of the functions ModBot has is to allow a moderator to lock a thread and leave a message describing why without identifying the moderator who locked the thread. Behind the scenes, the moderator who locked the thread is still recorded. Every moderator has access to ModBot. ModBot is not an actively maintained account, so sending complaint PMs to ModBot will not get you a response. PM a moderator if you have moderation questions. This thread is not about ModBot's use for moderation purposes.

Table of Contents
ModBot Basics: Giving away things using ModBot -- Post #2
Giving Away Things Outside the Steam Thread -- Post #3
Advanced ModBot: Rules, Restrictions, Game Comments, and Trivia Giveaways -- Post #4
FAQ: How to Get Games To Give Away With ModBot -- Post #5
FAQ: Permanently Blocking Users, Removing Accidentally Claimed Keys, and Other ModBot functions you can do -- Post #5

FAQ: Frequent Freakouts -- Post #6
Trivia -- Post #6

Some images used by ModBot were made by community members, including alr1ght, jshackles, and KenOD.


listen to the mad man
How do I give away something using ModBot?
Send a PM to ModBot, in the following format:

ModBot will send you a PM within a minute or two. Open the PM. This PM echoes back the games you sent, but includes secret encrypted keys for them, hiding the actual game keys from prying eyes. Only the winner will get to see the real key. Follow the instructions by QUOTING ModBot, and then copying and pasting the resulting text in the thread you want the giveaway to take place in.

When you post the text inside the thread, it will appear formatted.

As you can see, the posts include instructions for how users can claim your games. When they successfully claim a game, the game will be edited out of your post and you will receive a receipt. You don't need to do anything more, ModBot takes care of sending the real game keys to the user who wins them.

If you are confused about these steps, try this animated GIF tutorial.

If you are giving away something outside the Steam thread, please review this post. There are some things you need to know. It will only take a few seconds.

Please see the next post for more advanced information about using rules with your giveaway.

What can I give away with ModBot?
Literally anything. If you obey the format listed above, ModBot will accept any code. We've had people give away PSN and Xbox Live codes, and even a smartphone.

If you would like to mark that a particular giveaway is NOT a Steam key, you can do so by including the name of the service the key is for in brackets next to the game name. For example:
Flower (PSN) ->
Flower (PSN)
Dead Space 3 (Origin) ->
Dead Space 3 (Origin)
ModBot also supports marking icons for
Xbox (Xbox and XBL);
eShop (Wii U, 3DS, eShop);
iOS (iOS, iPad, iPhone, iTunes);
Telltale Games DRM; and


listen to the mad man
Special Considerations for Giving Things Away Outside the Steam Thread
Thank you very much for being willing to give away whatever you're considering giving away. I am sure the recipient appreciates it greatly.

If you are planning on giving away a game outside the Steam thread, you should include a rule to indicate which thread you will post the giveaway in. Imagine, for example, you are giving away Divinity: Original Sin in the Official Thread for the game. Adding a rule for this is as simple as putting the word THREAD and then a link to the thread you want to post the game in. It has to be a link to the thread, not a link to the POST. So it has to have the ?t= part in the URL. If you just posted a new thread, the URL you are redirected to does NOT have the thread URL, so be sure you get this right. Here's a visual example:

Why should I bother with this?
- If you do not include this rule, ModBot might have a harder time automatically editing the game out when it has been claimed
- If you do not include this rule, some other rules, like the NOLURKERS rule (which requires that claimants have 5 posts in the thread to be able to claim the game) will by default read posting statistics from the Steam thread, instead of the thread you intend to give the game away in.​


listen to the mad man
Advanced ModBot: Applying rules to your giveaway
As you can see in the above tutorial, ModBot supports different kinds of rules. You add them one per line after your keys in your giveaway PM. Here are a list of the rules:

Different Giveaway Types
This will make your giveaway a raffle. A random eligible entry will be chosen after 3 hours. If no one has entered at this point, it'll become first come first serve.​
This will make your giveaway a raffle. A random eligible entry will be chosen after 24 hours. If no one has entered at this point, it'll become first come first serve.​
This will make your giveaway a lightning raffle. A random eligible entry will be chosen after 15 minutes. If no one has entered at this point, it'll become first come first serve.​
If you are giving away multiple keys and want the same person to be able to enter for and win more than one (this may be especially useful with a RAFFLE; combine with NOWINNERSDAILY so that people can enter for multiple games in a RAFFLE but only win one), use this rule.​
If you use the RAFFLE or RAFFLE24 rules above, and you are posting in the Steam thread, you can add the AUTOREPOST rule to have ModBot automatically bump your raffle. 3 hour raffles get a single bump, 1 hour before their deadline. 24 hour raffles get two bumps, one after 12 hours, and one 1 hour before their deadline. This is optional, but might save you some work.
NOTE: If you select this rule, ModBot will automatically repost your giveaway regardless of whether you post the giveaway to begin with or not. So there's no changing your mind once you've chosen this.​

Restricting Winners
This makes it so that a user has to have posted in the Steam thread* 5 or more times before they become eligible
* There is a grace period: users who posted 5 or more posts in the LAST Steam thread also count.
NOTE: For giveaways done outside the Steam thread, this rule requires 5 or more posts in the thread the game was given away in.​

This makes it so that people who have won within the last day are not eligible.​
This makes it so that people who have won within a month are not eligible.​
This makes it so that people who have won within a week are not eligible.​

This prohibits junior members from entering. I highly recommend you do not use this and instead use other rules. Junior members can be good contributors and we want to encourage new people to take part in the community.​
This makes it so that only juniors can win the game. Might be useful to do some giveaways like this to attract new members to the community.​

This will restrict the giveaway to previous givers only. Anyone who has given a game within the last 93 days counts.​
This will restrict the giveaway to previous givers who have given at least 25 games*! Great if you want to give away a big deal game and really want to make sure it goes somewhere worthy.
* All claimed giveaways in the last 90 days count for this calculation. You can see if you qualify using the my loot command described below.​
This will restrict the giveaway to people who have given away a game since the last time they have won a game (minimum one giveaway). You can combine this with MEGAGIVERSONLY if you'd like.​

BLOCK username
This will block that username from participating in specific.
For example, applying these rules in order would block these three users:
BLOCK Stumpokapow
BLOCK Nirolak​
This will apply the COMMUNITY block list to your giveaway. ModBot calculates users that have been frequently blocked by other users, and blocks those users from your giveaway. Want to avoid scammers but don't know who the scammers are? Use this rule.​

Minor Formatting Rules
By default, ModBot contains text asking recipients to PM you with their thanks if they win. If you use the NOTHANKS rule, recipients will be told NOT to thank you at all.​
If you do not want ModBot to attempt to auto-generate little icons to represent the games you're giving away, just use this rule or manually remove them when you post.​
By default the bot sends you a receipt after a giveaway. If you give away multiple games it will attempt to combine receipts so you don't get spammed very much. Receipts take a few minutes by default. If you do not want any kind of receipt, opt out by using this rule.​

Special Ways To Post Giveaways
This has the bot post the giveaway in the thread itself, so your charity is anonymous and no one will ever know it was you. You can still get receipts if you want PM updates on who took your stuff.​
THREAD threadurl
If you are posting in a thread that is NOT the current Steam thread, but you want the NOLURKERS functionality to work or want to guarantee that the auto-edit works, please include this rule along with the thread URL for the thread you're posting in. For more information, click here
For example:
THREAD http://www.neogaf.com/forum/showthread.php?t=858592

Getting Rid Of Stuff You Really Don't Care About
This rule can be used to give away total trash you don't care about. Anyone can enter (even people you have blocked); anyone can win as much as they want; there is absolutely no throttle applied, so someone who has won 50 times in the last week is still going to be able to claim everything they want here; the database will not record the winner so it will not count as a win for the winner for any future giveaways. I don't advise using this rule at all, as the potential for abuse is high. This rule overrides any NOLURKERS NOWINNERS GIVERSONLY JUNIORSONLY NOJUNIORS BLOCK BLACKLIST PERMABLOCK PAYITFORWARD MEGAGIVERSONLY rules you have a applied, in addition to disabling the global throttle. Again, don't use this, and if you do, expect that one person is going to claim every key and give them to his or her friends or make a profit reselling the keys. Again, you don't want to use this. A note for winners: Although you'll get the initial winning PM, you will not be able to retrieve keys won under this rule with MY LOOT mails, because as far as the system is concerned, you didn't win them.​

Advanced ModBot: Game Comments
Sometimes, to add a personal touch to your giveaway, you'll want to add comments to each game to show your opinion on the game or encourage people to give your giveaway a shot. You can do this, but you need to be VERY precise about how you do it. The format is:

Game Name # Title - Key

A visual example:

- Comment must be on a single line, multi-line comments will break the giveaway
- Comment can include BBCode but again must be on a single line
- Game Name and comment must be separated by " # ". Space pound space. Comment and game key must be separated by " - ". Space - space.
This must be exactly right. Examples:
Dead Space#lol EA games - KEY1-GOES-HERE
You need a space between game name and #
The Sims 3 (Origin) #now with more stuff - KEY1-GOES-HERE
You need a space between # and comment
Mutant League Football 2014 # Wow, EA is such a great publisher, this game is on Steam and everything-KEY1-GOES-HERE
You need a space between comment and separator for the key
Star Wars: TIE Fighter HD # One of my favourite PC games ever, remade, and only $9.99 with bonus campaigns. - KEY1-GOES-HERE
- You can leave a comment for each game in your giveaway, or just some, or none at all.
- Comments work on anonymous giveaways, but remember that since you can't preview the giveaway, you want to be 100% sure you got the comments right.​

Advanced ModBot: Trivia giveaways
Some people like attaching trivia questions to their giveaways to add more of a game element to it. This can now be done. This feature is in BETA and is not necessarily supported, use with caution. There is a very precise way of doing this, you have to be very careful with your formatting. You must include the TRIVIA rule in your overall giveaway. The format is:

Game Name ?? Question ?? Answer - Key

- You cannot combine comments and trivia giveaways.
- Each game in your giveaway can have a different trivia question. You can also have some games have trivia questions and other games just be free and clear giveaways. You must include the TRIVIA rule even if only some of your games have trivia questions. You should only include the TRIVIA rule once.
- Trivia questions can have multi-word answers. Capitalization does not matter. Punctuation does not matter. Some effort is made to standardize numeric entries, but it's not perfect--I would not advise doing trivia questions with numeric answers. Articles like "the" do not matter, but I may have missed some, so try to avoid answers which contain articles. Spelling does matter and variant spellings are not accepted, so be especially clear if the answer has multiple spellings or variant spellings. Answers must fit on one line.
- Trivia works on anonymous giveaways, but remember that you cannot preview the layout so make sure you got everything right.
- Trivia works with other rules; the entrant will have to get the trivia question right AND satisfy the other rules.
- Entrants do not get a PM saying they got the question wrong
- Entering counts as an entry,. so if you get the question wrong, you cannot enter again.
- It is optional whether your question ends in a question mark.
- Game name and Question must be separated by a space, two question marks, and a space. Question and answer must be separated by a space, two question marks, and a space. Answer and key must be separated by a space, a dash, and a space.
This must be exactly right. Examples:
Super Mario Bros. 3 (eShop) ?? What is Mario's last name ?? Miyamoto - NOTA-REAL-KEY1

Flappy Bird (iOS) Who created flappy bird? Dong ?? NOTA-REAL-KEY2
You did not put a " ?? " delimiter between the game name and the question. You chose an answer with variant spellings.
F1 2014 # This is the best annual installment yet of this franchise ?? Who won the Grand Prix in 1900 ?? Michael Schumacher Sr. Sr. Sr. - NOTA-REAL-KEY3
You attempted to combine comments and trivia. Your answer is unnecessarily precise and will almost certainly not be correctly guessed.


listen to the mad man
How do I get games to give away with ModBot?

There are three basic ways to give away games: keys, redemption links, and gifts purchased on Steam.

Keys you can get by buying games on sites like Amazon, GetGamesGo, GamersGate, GreenManGaming, ShinyLoot, GameFly, and others, as well as Indie Bundle services like IndieRoyale, Groupees, Bundlestars, and other services. Once you get them, simply give them away, no problem.

Redemption links are a little more complicated. You get these when you want to share games bought on Humble Bundle or IndieGala. Mostly the sites that use redemption links have instructions on how to get links--you want to follow the steps required for gifting games to friends, and use the link you would share with friends as the key for ModBot. An example of this is found in the tutorial above. You can see instructions for how to share games bought on Humble Bundle by clicking here.

Finally, you can of course give away games you bought on Steam for the express purpose of giving to people. This is a pretty simple process, but requires a little extra work compared to the other types of game gifts. GRIEF.EXE made a helpful tutorial which you can access here, but the short version involves buying the game as a gift on Steam, emailing the gift to yourself, and getting the redemption link from your email. In the future, I hope to expand ModBot to directly take gifts on Steam.

Troubleshooting ModBot: Common Tasks You Can Do

ModBot supports a variety of support-related PMs that can handle common support tasks for you.

I made a giveaway but realized I want to change the rules after the fact. Can I do this?
If you haven't posted the giveaway yet, yes, just submit a new giveaway registration PM with the same games and keys and ModBot will send you an updated giveaway code.​

How do I see what I have won in the past? How do I see what I have given away in the past? How do I know what I have unclaimed right now in ModBot?
I won a game and didn't receive the PM or lost the PM with the key. How do I fix this?
Send a PM to ModBot with the subject line my loot and any body text. You will get a response with a full accounting of everything you've sent to or received from ModBot.​

What happens if I want to repost a game that's already been posted?
Scenario 1: I posted a game and no one claimed it. I want to repost it with less restrictive rules.
No problem, just create a new giveaway with the same game. ModBot will update the rules no problem.​

Scenario 2: I claimed a game and found out I already have it or don't want it. / I posted a game and someone claimed it and found out they didn't want it or already have it.
First, please don't enter for games you don't want. If you think it's likely you'll buy the game, just don't enter. Don't enter every giveaway just because it's there. Enter the giveaways you want most. Be fair to other people.
Second, now that the mistake has been made, you can fix it. Send a PM to ModBot with the subject line nuke. In the body, place the keys or URLs you wish to nuke one per line. The keys you should use are the actual, original serial keys, NOT the ModBot MB- codes. You will not receive a response. After a few minutes, you can submit a new giveaway with the key or URL and it will work fine.​

Scenario 3: I just did scenario 2, but ModBot still won't accept the key.
This sometimes happens, especially with redemption URLs. In this case, if you are 100% sure that the key/URL is not claimed, add an ampersand at the end of the URL when you submit it in your new giveaway.
For example, if ModBot is marking http://www.humblebundle.com/?key=NOTAREALKEY as taken, submit http://www.humblebundle.com/?key=NOTAREALKEY&.​

What happens if I enter for a raffle and discover I don't want it BEFORE the raffle is drawn for? How do I disqualify myself?
Again, I really must suggest that you take a few seconds to consider if you really want something before entering the raffle. But now that you've done it, you can disqualify yourself by sending a PM to ModBot with the subject line disqualify me and any body text. This will disqualify you from ALL outstanding raffles you have entered, and you will not be able to re-enter those raffles later.​

People won't claim this random game I'm trying to give away, but it's really driving me nuts to see it in my list of games. Can you take it off my hands?
This is really a waste of my time and a waste of your time. Please don't do this. But since some people really can't let it go, you can do this. Send a PM to ModBot with the subject line scrap me and any body text. Any games you have that are currently outstanding with ModBot will be removed from your account. The keys will be recycled and given away by ModBot later and you will not get credit for them. Please do not do this if you have any raffles that are not yet drawn for--it could negatively impact drawing for these raffles​

Someone is being a mega jerk and I want to block them permanently from ever entering my raffles again. / Someone won a game off me and sold it for a profit or otherwise did something totally unacceptable.
You can permanently block any user by sending a PM to ModBot with the subject permablock. The body should be a list of usernames, one per line, that you wish to block. There is no undoing this. Do not give people the benefit of the doubt--if someone scams the system, permanently block them. It makes the community blacklist more valuable. If you stay silent, other people will be impacted too. If someone's scamming rises beyond the level of being an abusive ModBot user and to the level that you need a GAF moderator's help, please PM a moderator.​

I posted a 3-hour or 24-hour raffle and it's totally buried in the thread can I repost it?
As mention above, you can use the AUTOREPOST rule to have ModBot automatically repost your giveaway. You can manually repost the giveaway if you'd like, but please try to be courteous to others and don't spam your giveaway. Maybe to help avoid spam you might consider linking to your giveaway instead of reposting all the text. It's up to you, but please be reasonable, especially if you're just giving away a bundle extra.​


listen to the mad man
Frequent Freakouts People Have About ModBot

My giveaway ended five seconds ago and it hasn't yet been edited out. Is ModBot down? Shouldn't you be fired for doing such a bad job running this service? Invest some of the millions you make off ModBot to improve functionality.
ModBot checks every 45-60 seconds for work to be done. During high usage periods, he can slow down to 75-90 seconds between checks. He can draw for three giveaways at a time. If someone just gave away 150 keys, it's going to take a while to clear that backlog. First-come first-serve giveaways are prioritized over raffles, and eligible raffles are drawn for at random, not in order they were submitted. Do not freak out if it takes ModBot a little while to draw for your giveaway. The whole point of this system is for there to be less work for you. If you are sitting around F5ing every two seconds, you might as well just handle everything manually yourself.​

My giveaway ended a long time ago and still no one has taken it. I can't possibly believe no one wanted this game I paid eleven cents for in a bundle and have never played. Is ModBot broken?
It's more likely that no one wants your game. Or the people who do don't qualify based on the rules you used. This doesn't mean you're a bad person or whatever, but reposting your game to get attention is like bumping your own thread to get attention. If people were interested, they'd enter. :/​

I entered for a giveaway and didn't win it. No one else won either. Then, later, someone else came along and won. Why didn't I win?
Well, first, just because a giveaway isn't edited immediately doesn't mean it's drawn for. See above. Second, there are a variety of reasons why you might not have won. One is that you didn't follow the instructions for PMing ModBot. One is that you didn't meet the rules the giveaway maker set out. Finally, ModBot has a "throttle" that prevents you from winning games back to back to back to back. You need to wait a little while between wins. The throttle starts around 15 minutes between wins, and ramps up based on the number of wins you've had in the last week. This means that if you just won something, you will need to wait a minimum of 15 minutes to win again. If you reply in-thread a ModBot administrator can check the logs and follow up to see if you were throttled, but a better policy would be for you to not be a jerk and recognize that if you've already won a half-dozen games this week, maybe it's okay to let someone else have a shot. Please do not send requests to inquire whether you are throttled; police yourself by choosing not to win dozens of games a week. Be a nice person.​

I was just throttled for a big cash value giveaway because I won a dozen small crap games this week. Why should I even bother entering for the smaller games if it's going to turn around and bite me?
I don't care what you enter for or don't enter for and I'm not your therapist. How the system works is clearly laid out in these posts. If you want lots of small throwaway games, go for it. If you want to enter for big games, go for it. If you keep winning, you'll eventually get throttled for a little bit. If you are being throttled, you're well into the top 10% or so of takers and I really feel like you're wasting my time and being selfish if you are asking for support at this point. Please, try to share with other people.​

I used to win games all the time, I've won hundreds of games, but now I can't seem to win any anymore. What gives?
The top five all-time winners (each well over 175 games won at this point) have a special restriction placed on their accounts which requires them to give away a game between each win. The way I see it, top winners are one of two people: hardcore leeches who are basically abusing the system OR people who are really involved and active with using the system. The former don't really deserve to keep winning, the latter won't be impacted because they'll be giving stuff back.​

Is ModBot rigged?

No really, why do I never win?
First, I find that people who ask this are actually people who have won quite a lot, and this is pretty rude. Second, I think the answer to that is pretty obvious: Statistics. If you enter, say, 100 popular giveaways, each of which have 200 entrants, you have a 39% chance to win once or more. If you enter 100 popular giveaways, each of which have 100 entrants, you have a 65% chance to win once or more. How many wins were you expecting? Try entering some giveaways that are less competitive. Over 130 people have won 50 games or more each. Over 600 people have won 10 games or more each. People are winning.​

Am I blocked? Can you tell me if I'm blocked? Am I on the permanent block list? Did someone block me from their giveaway? Is the reason why I'm not winning because I'm blocked?
So, first off--blocking is a private action and no one is going to reveal the block list of a particular giveaway or the community blocklist. But second, most of the people who ask this are like junior members with 35 posts who have entered for 4 games and won one. There is not an elaborate conspiracy of hateful jerks gifting hundreds of games out of the goodness of their heart but blocking anyone who has ever entered or won any of them. No one is keeping notes on you. This is a community thing. If you didn't go out of your way to do stuff to get blocked, you're not going to be blocked. The people who get blocked are by and large people who have won hundreds of games, people who have resold games they won, people who give away fake games, people who brag about exploiting the system, people who whine in-thread constantly about how they don't win enough. Blocking is rare, block lists are small. Also, the car that just drove by your house is not someone stalking you, it's just someone driving. If you see them a lot, it's probably because they live in your neighborhood or they're visiting. Gang stalking isn't real.

Legal Mumbo Jumbo, please?
Only give stuff to ModBot if you want to get rid of it; once something is in the system, we are not responsible for the key being claimed. Unused keys in the system may be recycled after a few months, even if you did not publicly share the key. If you win something on ModBot and the key does not work, you are not entitled to a replacement key although the giver may choose to give you one if they wish. Redeem keys that you win immediately, there is no guarantee that they will continue to be valid. ModBot carries no uptime guarantee. ModBot cannot check if a key is real before giving it away. You are not entitled to technical support, although people are generally happy to help. There is no continued service guarantee--ModBot can be shut down at any time for any reason or no reason. ModBot is not affiliated with the owner of NeoGAF.com. ModBot is not responsible for the events of the Terminator movie franchise. Management reserves the right to block anyone from using ModBot in any capacity at any time for any reason but has never done so in the past.​


What do the
icons mean?

A select list of games that are widely considered to be irredeemably bad. Most are sub-50 Metacritic. No, you can't have the full list, but nothing on it is my opinion or pushing an agenda, it's all based on near-universal agreement that the games are terrible.
ModBot detects that the game costs $30 or more on Steam right now, irrespective of quality.​

How do I do a Mystery Gift giveaway?
ModBot doesn't know what you give away. He relies on the game names you provide to be able to detect and display art for the games. If you do not provide a game name, it will be a Mystery Gift. In addition, if you put the Mystery Game, Mystery Gift, or Mystery Giveaway in your title, it will count. Here's an image example of some of the ways ModBot can pick up on Mystery Gifts.​

Can I edit the formatting for ModBot stuff once I've posted the giveaway?
ModBot doesn't care what the formatting is, but the rules are there to make it easier for new people, so please don't be a jerk and post "u no wat to do dead space mb-10EFBA17280188EE". That's confusing to people. It doesn't save you time. But if you want to change up the images or play around the format, by all means feel free to do so. As long as the MB- code is still in the post, ModBot will detect and edit it out.​

How do I tell what length to make the giveaway?
A good rule of thumb: If you're giving away a game that you really don't want, make it a first-come first-serve giveaway. If you're giving away a game that you didn't directly buy (IE a bundle extra) but that you want to give to a good home, try a fifteen minute raffles. Use a three hour raffle for valuable or high end bundle extras or smaller games that you've purchased to give away. Twenty-four hour raffles are really quite excessive and it makes sense to reserve them for pretty near full price purchases, big gifts, or especially special giveaways. You can totally ignore these suggestions, nothing is preventing you from using a 24 hour raffle for Bad Rats, but this represents a sort of best practice approach.​
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