Alien Swarm Multiplayer Bots Guide – How to Add Bots via Console

Step by step process to add mutliplayer bots in Alien Swarm.

Alien Swarm originally intended to have bots support by default but ended up having none. You will be surprised that you can still add bots to Alien Swarm multiplayer with a minimum of issues.

Bots seem to handle every level well, holding fire formation and providing support on the go. Follow this guide below to add and remove Alien Swarm bots to your server. Go through the config if you want to automate things.

Add Bots to Alien Swarm Multiplayer

cl_selectm (marinenum) (slot)

Put the 0-7 number for Sarge, Wildcat, etc in (marinenum) being numbers. (slot) being the 0-3 number, for players 1-4, respectively. You can also use slot number -1 to add to the first available slot.

How to Remove Bots

cl_dselectm (marinenum)

Again, the same rules apply. Alternatively, you can use “removebot_” and “removebots” commands to make this easier.

Note: These command-line functions should be used directly from the lobby menu, using them anywhere else would result in an invalid command error from the console.

Below is the config by FoxUnit01 of Black Cat Games Forum, who originally discovered this workaround. It also included useful tips and keybindings so you can edit it to your liking.

  • foxBot.cfg – Sets up bot-adding/removing commands and also binds functions to keypad keys
    Type addbot_ to add the bots you’d like. removebot_ will remove a bot, removebots will remove all bots
  • Keypad 1-8 adds bots (in order of Sarge, Wildcat, etc. through Vegas) and also selects your marine if none is selected
  • Keypad . (DEL) removes all bots

To use, simply place this in your swarm\cfg folder and do “exec foxBot.cfg”

Useful Tips

  • Should you switch to another marine, the bot will hold position and cover the angle you left them facing when you switched. Thus, to have a marine cover, say, a doorway, simply move him to a good position facing the door and switch to another marine. This is classic AS2k4 behavior.
  • Bots must be ordered manually to use equipment like medical satchels, turrets, etc. Get familiar with giving equipment orders and switching marines on-the-fly if you are going to use them effectively. The Offline Practice level is, actually, great practice for this.
  • It should be noted that bots DO use the Medical Gun automatically, but giving manual equipment orders is more reliable. I prefer the med satchel when commanding a bot medic.
  • Also, make sure bots have ammo for their weapons. If they run out of ammo, they will run around punching aliens, which gets them killed damned quick on Hard or Insane.
  • Bots seem to handle all the levels just fine, even including parts like the Deima bridge crossing (they hold fire formations well).
  • When a player leaves (or is kicked from) a lobby, his/her bots will leave as well.
    Bots can be added by game joiners. However, new players can still join, and once the lobby fills up, all bots will be automatically kicked and none will be able to be added.
  • You do not gain any EXP from bot kills and bots simply share your level.

Known MP Bot Bugs

  • Bots sometimes do not leave correctly when new players join until the lobby fills up to 4 players, as mentioned above – if you don’t have a full lobby joining, use Keypad . (DEL) to remove them and make room (this is being looked into)
  • Anyone giving a “hold” or “go” order will order all bots, regardless of rather he/she “owns” them or not – however, equipment orders and marine switching work as intended
  • Attempting to change marines ends up changing one of your bots instead – just remove all bots and then add the marine bots you want via the keypad

Keypad Shortcuts

  • bind “KP_END” “addbot_Sarge”
  • bind “KP_DOWNARROW” “addbot_Wildcat”
  • bind “KP_PGDN” “addbot_Faith”
  • bind “KP_LEFTARROW” “addbot_Crash”
  • bind “KP_5” “addbot_Jaeger”
  • bind “KP_RIGHTARROW” “addbot_Wolfe”
  • bind “KP_HOME” “addbot_Bastille”
  • bind “KP_UPARROW” “addbot_Vegas”
  • bind “KP_DEL” “removebots”

Console Commands

  • alias “addbot” “echo Invalid bot! Usage: addbot_; echo For example, addbot_Sarge will select Sarge.”
  • alias “addbot_Sarge” “cl_selectm 0 -1”
  • alias “addbot_Wildcat” “cl_selectm 1 -1”
  • alias “addbot_Faith” “cl_selectm 2 -1”
  • alias “addbot_Crash” “cl_selectm 3 -1”
  • alias “addbot_Jaeger” “cl_selectm 4 -1”
  • alias “addbot_Wolfe” “cl_selectm 5 -1”
  • alias “addbot_Bastille” “cl_selectm 6 -1”
  • alias “addbot_Vegas” “cl_selectm 7 -1”
  • alias “removebot” “echo Invalid bot! Usage: removebot_; echo For example, removebot_Sarge will remove Sarge.; echo Alternatively, use removebots to remove all bots.”
  • alias “removebot_Sarge” “cl_dselectm 0”
  • alias “removebot_Wildcat” “cl_dselectm 1”
  • alias “removebot_Faith” “cl_dselectm 2”
  • alias “removebot_Crash” “cl_dselectm 3”
  • alias “removebot_Jaeger” “cl_dselectm 4”
  • alias “removebot_Wolfe” “cl_dselectm 5”
  • alias “removebot_Bastille” “cl_dselectm 6”
  • alias “removebot_Vegas” “cl_dselectm 7”
  • alias “removebots” “cl_dselectm 0; cl_dselectm 1; cl_dselectm 2; cl_dselectm 3; cl_dselectm 4; cl_dselectm 5; cl_dselectm 6; cl_dselectm 7”

Console Readout

  • echo “Bot Config v1.1 Loaded”
  • echo “Please be courteous about adding bots into public games!”
  • echo “To add bots, type ‘addbot_’ into console”
  • echo “To remove bots, type ‘removebot_’ into console”
  • echo “To remove all bots, type ‘removebots’ into console”
  • echo “These commands will ONLY work from the lobby screen!”
  • echo “Keypad shortcuts:”
  • echo “Keypad 1 – Sarge”
  • echo “Keypad 2 – Wildcat”
  • echo “Keypad 3 – Faith”
  • echo “Keypad 4 – Crash”
  • echo “Keypad 5 – Jaeger”
  • echo “Keypad 6 – Wolfe”
  • echo “Keypad 7 – Bastille”
  • echo “Keypad 8 – Vegas”
  • echo “Keypad . – Remove all bots”
  • echo “Please see foxBot.cfg for more info or to re-bind key shortcuts.”
  • echo “Thanks and have fun! ~fox”


When you have decided that you will add bots to the multiplayer you will have to set in mind these limitations. Firstly the bots which you want to add can only be added in the lobby, so is the case if you want to remove the bots.

Bots cannot switch the weapon they are holding, the only case in which they can switch is when their ammo on the weapon they are holding runs out.

The Medic bots in the game are a bit weird sometimes, these bots cannot decide whether to shoot enemies or heal teammates so they just switch weapons constantly.

Bots can’t use the alt-fire and some of the off-hand items. Bots will belong to the person who created them. The creator can give any commands to the bots he wants.

The other players are restricted to giving only the stop and go commands to the bots.


  • Will bots give you XP boast?
  • What’s the level of the bots?
    They share whatever MP level you are on.
  • Bots can join public games?
    Yes, they can. However new players can still join and bots will be automatically kicked when lobby fills up. When a player leaves, his/her bots will also leave the server.

General Issues

Anyone giving hold or go order will position all the bots to that. It doesn’t matter whether you own the bots.

Bots sometimes don’t leave when new players join. When that happens you can use the cl_dselectm command to remove bots if you don’t have full lobby joining.

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Ali is a passionate RPG gamer. He believes that western RPGs still have a lot to learn from JRPGs. He is editor-in-chief at but that doesn't stop him from writing about his favorite video ...