(AUTHORS NOTE: this is one of my first creepypastas. If you have any recommendations on making this better, then feel free to comment on this page with improvements.)
Team fortress 2 is a free-to-play game on Steam. It's a funny and interesting first person shooter type of game which has cool features like special events on Halloween and such. I began playing the game early in March 2013 and have gotten pretty good at it, watching as new and interesting things were added to the game.
The main killjoy, I have in the game is finding crates all the time. I find them and see the cool content that could be inside them before realizing that I have to spend real money on a key for it. The worst part is the fact that I actually will spend money on buying keys for the crates, even though I can just buy that strange or kill-streak on the Steam market. However, there's one crate that I'm glad I gave up on the temptation to open.
Back in October 2013, I was playing on 2fort. Our engies had made the usual sentry nest in the pipes and the snipers were in the usual place. I was going to try and be more tactical this round, so I chose Demoman and decided to set up some stickybomb traps. I was then distracted by the pop up you get when you get new items. I clicked it, hoping for it to be an actual item. It was another useless crate. I wasn't going to bother checking the name at the time as I had realized that during the time I was checking the crate I was killed by a spy. I cursed to myself and decided to check the crate later.
After I had left the server I decided to check my inventory. There was the crate. It looked relatively normal like the other crates I had, but the name was different.
"Limited Birthday Crate:
This crate can only be opened on your birthday. Better not get rid of it- there's a surprise there for you!"
"Birthday crate?" I thought "It's October, my birthday's in six months!" Even though I knew it would probably be a useless item in there, I kept the crate.
Over the next few days, I for some reason got a lucky streak in finding new, cool items. I found hats and name tags, all stuff that was really rare to find normally. My friends were awfully confused and suspected I was wasting money on them, but I simply just told them I was lucky. It wasn't until after Christmas my luck began to disappear.
Four months until Birthday:
I was beginning to get random pop-ups on Team Fortress 2. They were not about new items, but it was something to do with that crate. It said stuff like "scratching is heard from inside the crate" and "occasional thumps are heard from inside the crate". I figured that whatever it was, it was going to be a new animal cosmetic or something.
Three months until Birthday:
I didn't get any new items for a while. I only ever got achievement ones, but all the other pop-ups and such were things to do with the crate. The movements inside it were more violent now, saying how screaming was coming from inside it. The description of the crate changed too.
"This crate can only be opened on your birthday. I advise you open it as soon as possible- you're going to have fun with what's inside!"
I wasn't scared to be honest. If anything, I was fascinated by this cool secret I found.
Two months until Birthday:
I wasn't even getting achievement items anymore now. The only pop-ups I got were to do with the crate. I would hear chains rattling randomly when I was playing. A new pop-up appeared too.
"It wants to get out"
I was actually really excited. I could picture this creature like a small little monoculus following my player around or something. I couldn't wait for my birthday, but very soon I was going to wish I did.
One month until Birthday:
I was having great difficulty playing Team Fortress 2 now. I would get constant pop-ups all the time about the crate. For some reason I couldn't control my characters. Whenever I was on a server, my character would just walk into the nearest corner and do the animation for when you loose a round and you crouch. I had no option but to wait for my birthday.
5 days until Birthday:
I didn't play Team Fortress 2 up until then. Why? It wouldn't let me play it. Whenever I tried loading it up Steam would crash and log out. I was only able to play it until 5 days before my birthday. The main screen was different, a black background with the pictures of the mercenaries you see when its Halloween. I still couldn't play multiplayer properly. All I could do was offline training. I still got the annoying pop-ups and now it was even counting down to my birthday. I was suspicious of what was going on now. Was this normal?
30 minutes until Birthday:
My parents let me stay up on the night before my birthday so I could count down to it. I mainly watched Youtube videos all night until I was a minute off 12:00 AM. when it was 11:59 I opened Team Fortress 2 to see what would happen.
"new item acquired"
I almost squealed with glee. Well, I would have if it wasn't for the feeling of dread I was going to feel.
"you found: Birthday Crate Key:
The key to open the Birthday Crate. Get ready."
I slowly selected the option to open the crate. I sat nervously as the crate was slowly opened. I gagged at what I saw.
"You have found: Dead Child
I immediately discarded the item. "What sick fucking joke was that?" I exclaimed. I had to look this up. I checked forums and Youtube, but I found nothing to do with the Birthday Crate.
A week later, I got a reply to a post on a forum I had posted about the week prior. The person who had sent the reply referred to be known as Xavier. Xavier said that he had done research into this event as well, as he experienced the same thing two years ago. He said that he had figured out that the development of Team Fortress 2 was delayed so much because of Valve trying to cover up an event that happened with one of the developers. They found out that a developer was taking a week off work due to "family issues". They later found out that these family issues were him arguing with his wife. He was told by his wife that she would take the kids with her when she was going to move out and never let them come back. He got so annoyed by this that he yelled that he would never let them leave, then killed his wife and then his two kids when they slept. He then went insane and attempted to rape the dead bodies but was stopped when the police came in after a neighbor reported scary sounds from the other house.
Valve wanted to cover up the case, so they had to spend two years discussing deals with the police on what to do. The police eventually decided to not let anyone know about the case and cover it up. The crate was apparently added to the game as a sick joke by some developers without letting the others know. They called it the "birthday crate" because you get the key on your birthday and the crate on the day of when the developer killed his family.
I asked Xavier how he knew this and he replied with that he was a police officer who was looking into the case at first. He quit before Team Fortress 2 was released and decided to buy the game to see if anything was strange about it ("apart from some of the weapons," he said as a joke). He found the crate and immediately reported the case to Valve. They shrugged it off as a mod and ignored him. Xavier then said that now he has proof that it happened to me, he could finally go to Valve and tell them about it.
I haven't heard back from Xavier for a long time. He might have forgotten about the whole thing, or maybe Valve desperately don't want people to know about this. Very desperately.