The word “steam” is no longer associated with the rising mist of vapor produced by boiling or evaporated water. Or, at least, that’s what Google’s search engine would have you believe. Inputting “steam” on the search bar will get you multiple results about a popular video game digital storefront rather than what is defined in the dictionary.
Gamers will not be surprised by this tidbit as Steam is almost synonymous with personal computer (PC) gaming. The platform offers more than 30,000 games to over one billion registered accounts and 90 million monthly active users. Numbers that have no doubt increased in the past months, given how the majority of the world’s population are forced to remain at home due to the pandemic.
Other gaming platforms like GOG Galaxy and Electronic Arts’ Origin have tried and failed to unseat Steam’s position of being the preferred choice of PC gamers. Its success is due to the platform’s dual role of being a store and a service. People can buy games, manage and flaunt their massive gaming libraries, find like-minded individuals to play with, and even upload their own tweaks and adjustments to existing titles. This one-stop-shop model guarantees the support of gamers akin to how a car maintenance provider offering all-in-one services is preferred by Subaru and Ford owners.
Steam goes beyond being a store that sells games—promoting accessibility, community, and creativity with the added features they offer. Here are more reasons gamers can’t get enough of Steam.
Get insane discounts on holiday sales
Steam means business when it comes to their holiday sales, with prices dropping for almost 80 to 90% of a game’s retail price tag. It’s not just the barely heard fringe games, either. It also includes popular award-winning franchises like fantasy role-playing game Witcher and turn-based strategy game Civilization. You can get most games for lower prices, no matter the genre. The biggest sales usually occur during the Summer Sale or Winter Sale, which lasts around two weeks. But big discounts can happen year-round, especially during a game’s anniversary or other special occasions.
Hijack a friend’s keyboard with Remote Play
There’s nothing like an afternoon with friends playing Mario Kart or Jackbox Party Games. But due to calls of social distancing, it might be difficult to gather everyone in one room for a gaming session. With Steam, it’s possible to recreate this bonding experience through the Remote Play Together. The feature allows your friends to play the local multiplayer games that you own over the internet. They don’t even have to have a copy of the game since it’s your computer hosting the game. Your friends drop in with their keyboard or controller, acting as if they’re plugged directly to your computer.
Modify games with Steam Workshop
Fans have shown their love and support to shows, bands, and K-pop idols by creating content like illustrations, fanfictions, and even marketing collateral. Gamers, though, through the Steam Workshop, can take their expression to another level by adding modifications (mods) to their favorite titles. Mods can range from new maps and game modes to another set of weapons and quests, increasing the replay value and entertainment of the game. The Steam Workshop builds a stronger community of gamers, united in finding novel ways to share experiences and creative ideas.
Steam enjoys enormous success in the PC gaming world. Its commitment to releasing community-friendly features and making games more accessible and inclusive has gamers swear their loyalty (and money) to the platform.