Originally Posted by Amsterdam Hilton Hotel
Yep, mod teams haven't gone away, they're just called "indie teams" now. 10 years ago you would be talking hundreds of thousands of dollars to license a game engine and bring a product to market, so it just wasn't feasible for small groups to make commercial projects, hence the large "mod" scene where people did projects for fun.
With UDK, Unity etc with cheap/royalty based licensing the feasibility of actually releasing a game with a small team/budget is much more realistic. Back in the days most mod teams had delusions of going pro eventually, its just that today most people skip the modding part and jump straight into pretending to be professional developers.
Its the same end result though, 95% of indie/mod teams will never actually release a product/mod.