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Are you on team Steam, or are you a local copy kind of person?

I'm on both sides of the fence, but I find myself leaning towards the latter lately.

No matter how much money Valve makes, I still feel like they'll go the way of AOL and Myspace one day.

Or perhaps not.. Steam has been around in some form for over 10 years, an eternity in the software world. Users still enjoy frequent sales, access to the latest titles, and the vibrant social networking. Steam makes it easier for people to organize multiplayer games, and lets friends with like minded tastes stay in touch.

And you can't understate the growing popularity of esports, where Counter Strike and DOTA hold prestigious positions, both requiring Steam in order to play.

There are many other features I could go into with VR, automatic updates, good support for GNU/Linux(Gabe Newell uses Debian iirc), ect..

The bottom line: Steam is convenient, easy, and rules the market.

So I'm wondering, what makes it so desirable to leave the Steam client behind? My first argument was that your local games will always be yours so long as you maintain the data. Meaning you just need to avoid having the games deleted, and if your storage drive fails, have backups of your games.

Valve has stated that in the event of Steam going under they would remove the DRM for their games, such as Half Life and Left 4 Dead, but the fate of the rest of your library is really at the hands of the individual publishers. Most employ DRM as of now, but one kept secret about Steam is that there are many DRM-free titles available on the service, they just aren't advertised as such, the same way GOG boasts about their DRM free library. If you have any games that require DOS Box for instance, you can pretty much drag the files out of your Steam folders and use them just as well.

Aside from DRM, and I'm going on a personal tangent here, but sometimes when I play video games, I want to feel completely alone. I don't want my friends trying to chat with me whilst trying to immerse myself in a round of The Long Dark, or reading books in Morrowind(both games available DRM free I might add).

Steam has work a around for this. You can completely disable notifications if you please, change your status to offline(although it's so painfully obvious when you do this, as Steam misstates your log out time + will still update the recently play games on your profile). Lastly, and not to be confused with a status change, there's a complete offline mode available for Steam.

Now there are many bogus rumors about this offline mode, and I'm not going to make any claims as to which are true, and which are false. The two most common ones are that you can't use offline with first signing in, and that you can't play games over the internet while in offline mode. The latter is obvious with games that use your Steam profile in game, but I think if the games uses it's own profile and connection system, it's possible to do so. Again, I'm not entirely sure. The former supposedly has a work around according to my 5 seconds of googling.

Besides the availability of titles, since not every game is cracked or available from an alternative store front, I find going through the trouble of using Steam's offline mode not worth it anymore over just using local copies.

On an extended side note, I've saved a ton of money not dumping into the temptation of sales. But that's a problem with me, not Steam lol.


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I'm going to be hitting the decade mark with Steam next month, and many of my friends hit the decade mark two years ago. I've always thought people who got absolutely insane about Steam being DRM are loons just looking for something to complain about. Steam has provided a pretty damn good service for me despite a few "hiccups" that I'm still not willing to overlook.

>I'm on both sides of the fence, but I find myself leaning towards the latter lately.

Similarly. Mainly, in my opinion, because Steam is no longer a pure video game service. I really miss the old, OLD Steam client: you know, pic related. It had everything someone who honestly gave a fuck about enjoying video games needed: a clean and simple library, settings and features clearly at the bottom, relevant tabs up top, relatively lightweight for what it was. Tools for hosting were first and foremost in the user's view.

Now it's bloated, isn't purely about video games, turned the community aspect into vidyaBook, had a gigantic issue with eating RAM during updates that took literal YEARS to fix, has profile levels and placebo trading cards, has a service-wide link and content filter because of trader kiddies, and now supports a gambling platform that illegally engages hundreds of thousands of underage participants.

There's no longer a true alternative to Steam, which I think is bad and dangerous. Xfire died completely, Origin is a joke and a UI AND security nightmare all in one, same with Uplay. GoG Galaxy has little user-to-user interaction and is essentially JUST a web browser with some scripting. I'd love to make my own super-lightweight client

>No matter how much money Valve makes, I still feel like they'll go the way of AOL and Myspace one day.

Contingency plans are key: it's why I've got GoG purchases/pirate copies of games on an internal drive. No one lasts forever; even if it's 30 years from now, Valve could easily fold.

>but the fate of the rest of your library is really at the hands of the individual publishers.

Piracy. Piracy keeps (single player, mostly) games alive for decades merely because I can just hop on a private tracker and find what I want instantly. Unfortunately for the masses, it's not as easy since public trackers can be fishy.


SteamOS is built on Debian. The HDD requirements are a big weird (1tb mininmum) but it makes sense considering WD Blue 1tb drives just hit the $54 price range like 500gb drives did a few years ago. It's interesting but it needs a drastically smaller footprint not just in requirements but actual distro size for it to be effective.


They used to be really good: FTL with OST for $3.75? Just Cause 1 for 27 cents? People will never experience getting actual free games ever again on Steam. The secret I find is to spend as little as possible during every other sale: the closer to $0 spent, the better. Makes it worth it to get a bunch of games you were thinking about every other sale/every 2 sales or so.

I'm not gonna go nuts and say the service is the devil, but it's been better in the past. For every piece of good Valve does these days, it's at least 1 and a 1/2 pieces of evil alongside it.


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Everything wants to be it's own little ecosystem now.
It's really exhausting.


>>65 >>64
Yes, the Vidyabook bloat is bad. Maybe if someone did a library that connected to steam API but didn't feature all that stuff, people would use it, but Valve would probably get angry at that.

Yeah, Steam has been going on for a long while, but what if people suddenly started regarding valve as the devil, and developers decided that giving the X% of sales wasn't that good and decided to join the consumers in hating valve? That's basically a "bye bye valve"

I'm personally a fan of local storage, but considering I don't really do "new games", it's no real problem.


No Man's Sky is getting a GOG release.

This is a huge step in these regard.


Steam requires an internet connection.
Not everyone has that or wants that for their single player offline games.


For downloading games, but I've never had any problems playing my games offline.


>Not everyone has that
1) If you don't have an internet connection/don't have one for long periods of time, why are you pursuing the service? At that point it would sound like you have bigger problems than not being able to play video games.

>or wants that

2) Offline mode has always been dicey; works fine for some, doesn't work at all for others. That's something else they should have worked on instead of vidyaBook. If you don't want anyone bugging you on Steam while playing a single player game, you can always just go offline. The option is there.

3) The .exes for a lot of Steam-based games launch normally without Steam being open. There's a comprehensive list of them somewhere, I know that for sure.

Honestly, this raises another point: why haven't physical PC games transitioned to BD-ROMs or at least USB sticks? 32gb sticks are insanely cheap these days (approaching DVD disk costs) and 3.0 is becoming the new standard at a reasonable pace. What's stopping developers/publishers from making proprietary installation sticks for PC games? While their proprietary SD cards were the dumbest thing ever, Sony's flashcarts for the Vita are pretty smart (obviously this praise applies to the (3)DS flashcart as well).


Actually, I can talk about internet!
To be frank, I do have internet connection, but it is really spotty (using a 3g modem, but network infrastructure in my country isn't real good).
I'd have gotten cable internet but they don't reach my home. I live in a sparsely-populated neighbohrhood, so it's anti-economical. Getting satellite internet isn't cheap at all so it's out of the question.
Getting games with this little modem has been proven real hard (at least two weeks to download E.Y.E., I think they're also throttling me, which considering the infrastructure I don't blame them for it). Also, it has a data cap of a few GBs (not sure), and when you replenish it (by paying) you get 1 more GB. It's not that we're too poor for internet (we're okay), but it's an accessibility problem (they don't reach here).
So yeah, here I am pushing for more physical media. It'd be neat, and you'd get neat manuals and physical stuff to brag about. First worlders win, and I get to win as a side-effect.
Also, by making games a mostly-online stuff, I think we're kinda losing single player campaigns. Nowadays they're mostly an afterthought. Like the latest Quake Champions, Quake didn't use to be 100% multiplayer, yet the marketing seems to have forgotten that. So no vore fighting this time, I suppose.


After a certain time steam will refuse to even start without an internet connection. This has happened to me a few times and the duration seems to be months.

Steam has single player games. Say you buy and download one then go and live in a remote location. After some time steam will refuse to let you play that game without a connection via refusing to start up.
In addition to that some games will not install off a CD without first being activated on steam. You also cannot install steam without an internet connection. Steam is in effect the games DRM scheme.
When I encountered that form of DRM I dropped the steam spyware like a hot sack of potatoes.
Yes steam is also spyware. Why does it need to spin up my other hard drives (thankfully encrypted) when it starts up? It and windows should have nothing to do with the drives which is why windows has them spun down.

Learn about remote connections. SSH into a server within reachable physical distance and have that server download all your stuff. Then walk, run, hitch, or drive to the server and copy the data onto a drive that you take with you back home.
That could even be faster data transfer than fiber.


I have this one really cool game on a CD from way back and when I put it in my computer even today it still works just like years ago. I own a copy of the game and I can play it without hassle when and how I want.


I would have called that a fringe case years ago but it's incredibly valid considering how we have that in "more developed" nations as well; lots of people in recent years in that situation where cable doesn't go as far as it should from what I've read from multiple posts a few years ago on 4chan /v/. I don't disagree that physical media for PCs needs to make a comeback, same for more single-player focused games that aren't indie games or AAA game-movies.

I miss cool stuff like the World in Conflict Special Edition that wasn't entirely more expensive but had an actual chunk of the Berlin Wall included. I don't like how cool things like that are a Kickstarter afterthought: "give us this many shekels and you can BUY a SPECIAL edition!" Physical editions of games need to make a comeback in more than one way for more than one reason.

>After some time steam will refuse to let you play that game without a connection via refusing to start up.
Where are the proofs?
>In addition to that some games will not install off a CD without first being activated on steam
Proofs? I can only imagine modern games doing this in conjunction with the untimely phasing out of physical copies of games.
>You also cannot install steam without an internet connection.
Account-based service requires an initial internet connection? Color me surprised.
>Why does it need to spin up my other hard drives (thankfully encrypted) when it starts up?
However, I would like to know this myself. Why does it need to do this? Searching around says that the most likely answer is that the reason for this is Steam Guard verifying that you are "you" by checking that your hardware profile matches the last known configuration, but with the push for mobile authentication I doubt this is the case.


The proofs are that these things have happened to me. You can believe or not, I do not care. Why you are taking such a stance like that is beyond me.

This is very simple.
Get a hard drive and install windows on it. Then try various tests like leaving steam sitting for months and trying to start without a connection.

Try to install skyrim off a cd without connection. It will not work.
You cannot install the steam software without a connection. It needs to connect before it allows you to install. Try it yourself, very easy.
I have not touched my net facing windows drive in almost a year now, if I boot it without a connection I cannot use steam as has happened many times in the past.

I only bothered responding to help out some sushis that might be reading your post and to help stamp out the seeds of doubt ("Where are the proofs?") so that others might have a chance. I think I might be done with this thread.


>ask for proof since users have made claims similar to these they have not been able to back in the past in other places


I can't verify the other bits, but the Skyrim thing is a well known issue (launching install from the disc installs Steam if you don't have it already installed and then sets Steam to attempt to download Skyrim on launch, even if you just installed steam from a disc that contains Skyrim's data as well). You can install it off of the disc, but you still have to do it through Steam and you have to be online to authenticate the copy. So if you want to play Skyrim off of the disc without Steam you're gonna have to use a crack.


To be fair, you constantly asking for HEY PROOF PROOF WHERE'S YOUR PROOF HUH I NEED PROOF MAN DON'T TALK TO ME WITHOUT PROOF is also quite obnoxious.
I mean, just Google it, or try it out yourself. It's not like everything has to be rigorously cited.

Not him, by the way.


Steam is a particularly contested topic where people make things up to one-up "steamdrones" who equally participate in making things up about things steam actually DOES do. It's definitely something that requires evidence (at least saying "it has been reported on [website]") instead of the dubious credibility of someone who calls an account-based service "spyware" because it needs to check that the user is who they say they are considering the rampant account thievery attempts that go on among other things.

Acting holier-than-thou is also quite obnoxious.


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I reject online storage of games as good as I can. If the game is not an explicit online game, I try to get my hands on a hard copy or at least a DRM-free version to download.

Back in the days blowing out your cartridges or polishing you CD was a special moment full of anticipation in itself. I already miss these small rituals with my download-only games.


Don't know if I reject online storage or clients like Steam, but I do prefer to have a local copy that I can install whenever and wherever I want without having to go online during the install or when I want to play the game. Due to that, I do prefer older consoles and older PC games since those did not force you online to such a big degree that steam, uplay, and origin currently does.

Seen a few too many games where I got kicked out of the singleplayer component just because my ISP decided to do some work on the network that day.

I do have a lot of games on steam, but these days, I tend to get more through GOG when they have their sales. Having a local copy that I can keep stored on my server is pretty nice. It is a shame that publishers sometimes neglect games hosted outside of steam.


Oh boy. I should've proof read that.


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There's an unofficial DVD coverlet thread on the GOG forums. The quality varies; some of them are really nice, but others look like Chinese bootlegs.

But yeah, theoretically you can burn installers from your GOG files and store them on a disk like the old days. I do miss going to Circuit City and browsing the PC game aisle. Even Wal-Mart had a really cool PC games section back in the day, which funny enough introduced a lot of people to Valve retail releases, which forced them to install Steam(or WON in the early days).

And something I neglected to mention in the OP is why publishers don't use DRM free services.. well it's obviously fear of piracy. And they would be correct I'm afraid, piratebay is full of GOG installers. Nothin' wrong with that if you're in the 3rd world or you just wanna try a game before buying it, but it does effect the supply and demand. There's a lot of indie devs on GOG nowadays for instance, since maybe they feel like they've got nothing to lose and just want their game in front of as many people as possible. But I don't really want to get in a piracy debate, since those tend to be most uncomfy.


The steam community is kind of awful, I dont know about the more niche groups but the majority seems pretty terrible


CDs/DVDs with art have always been really cool, if I have to opportunity to buy an album or game in physical form, I normally will instead of pirating it or buying online.


I haven't bought a boxed game in years, though that's more because I don't play on consoles anymore. Last game I bought was Smash Bros. almost 3 years ago, and even then I haven't spent that much time playing the games I've got, preferring to emulate old arcade games or just older PC games on my toaster. I used to be sceptical about downloading games but now I just don't care. Hell, I've even bought a couple of games on Steam already (admitedly only because they weren't on GOG). I've been thinking of collecting older consoles, but then I see a good deal of the games are getting ported to Steam anyway and if they aren't I can emulate a good deal of them already, so I really don't know if it's the box or actually playing the games that I want. And most of the current gen games I'd want to play are getting Steam releases anyways, so I feel less incentive to get back to consoles and physical copies.


I already have over a thousand dollars worth of games on Steam, so I'm inclined to stay with it. But I don't like that I don't really own my games, Steam could potentially ban me for whatever reason and remove access to my games at any point. Or maybe they suddenly go down and I can't download the games I paid for.


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Just remember to back-up your games occasionally.


It's honestly less about any sort of moral values I might have about Steam and more about the fact that buying physical copies of things is not actually practical or even possible most of the time these days.

I don't know about you, but I don't actually have any gamestops near me. Plenty of indie games, or games from smaller companies just clean up do not release their games on disc.

Obviously I can pirate games and then keep a local copy, and I do do that, but on some level I feel like that's missing the point.


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I prefer disc but a lot are shifting to digital copies. Saying that, the last thing I bought was a digital version of Torchlight pack; going backup that so I always have a copy.


Honestly, even though I bought many a game from steam, I'm a local storage kind of guy. Further, I confess that I either used steamless or cracked the drm myself for the games I paid for. Paying for a license to a game is right up there with compound interest for "most usurious crap ever".

There may be some games I want on origin or whatever, I'm not sure. If I get those, I'm not sure how I'll crack them, but I'll probably find a way as long as its a single person game that I don't need a constant connection with a server in order to play.

In any case, it looks like either GOG, or FOSS gaming. And the later isn't always bad believe it or not. I'll always like Quake III, but OpenArena is like a kroger generic version of it, it's fun as hell, and I can meet up with people involved in the broader foss/linux/bsd/etc community.

I still have my steam account, but I rarely use it anymore.


I haven't bought games in a while, but when I do I prefer local/hard copies. I don't think steam will go unless the who net dies. Still though, I'd rather my access to what I paid for not be determined by a third party.

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