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Old 9th May 2014, 09:04   #1
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Should we be concerned about the state of Steam?

Rick looks at the recent troubles on Steam - is the issue endemic?

http://www.bit-tech.net/blog/gaming/...tate-of-steam/
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Old 9th May 2014, 09:18   #2
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Valve need to step up, accept responsibility for the quality of the offerings on their platform and take the job they've created for themselves seriously. If they don't, Steam will strongly resemble the iOS App Store within weeks.
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Old 9th May 2014, 09:20   #3
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I know i'm concerned with the state of steam. I have to contact tech support just to be able to buy a game and I can't add funds to my steam wallet at all. This is all caused by the fact that I split my time living in France and the UK.

More on subject, the store is a mess and it's difficult to find the gems among all the turds (new or otherwise) being released. And despite EU laws we still are not able to even give a game away let alone sell them on.

Oh I forgot to mention that the metacritic scores handily disappear for certain titles, normally the titles with low scores.

I really wish Steam had a suggestion box, as I have a few little complaints and suggestions for them.
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Old 9th May 2014, 09:31   #4
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Poor after-sales policies
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Old 9th May 2014, 09:45   #5
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lol at "barely functional lumps of code"

In all seriousness though, Valve do really need to take some responsibility for this - personally I think they should take the blame if they publish substandard games as, effectively, they've given them their recommendation by having them on their site in the first place. If Tesco was to stock something that was clearly not fit for purpose or substandard they'd have to refund you, not the manufacturer
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Old 9th May 2014, 10:38   #6
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IMHO Valve should have a bit more integrity on the products they wish to sell on their store, but there's also an argument for allowing an open doors policy and letting almost anyone in.

Take Amazon. They will sell you just about anything that's legal but they have an amazing customer service policy to go with it. Someone tries to sell worthless tat and Amazon are going to be stinging them for a lot of DPP returns.

Valve should improve its customer service, allow real easy refunds and bring reviews more to the fore. With these in place it'll be more self regulating.
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Old 9th May 2014, 10:51   #7
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Was going to post something very similar to Guinevere.

Steam is a marketplace, and there may well be some real rubbish on there. As a consumer, you shouldn't be relying on someone else to decide what you can and can't purchase. I might want to play Big Rigs: Over the Road Racing for the amusement value, and why shouldn't I be able to purchase it on Steam?

The big problem with Valve is that they seek to shirk their legal obligations, i.e. to provide goods that are fit for purpose, and more debatably DSR/Section 75.

However, that doesn't completely excuse the buyer. If you're buying games without reading reviews and looking at the community responses, then you've got to accept that you're taking a gamble. With early access games, for instance, I think you've got to accept everything that improves as a bonus.
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Old 9th May 2014, 10:54   #8
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Personally I hate Steam, I only use it because everything's on it (not too dissimilar to Windows in that regard really). I've actually had more success with Origin actually, but that lacks a lot of the features and has the massive issue of dealing with purely EA content (so I don't use it much at all in reality).

My issues stem from how it never bloody works for me, and when it does, it's sluggish and annoying. Every time I log in, Steam decides to go and check for updates (despite trying to set it to not do that), which causes things to freeze for a bit. If I wish to use it, half of the time I need to sign back into it, upon which is says I need to use a confirmation code sent to my email.

Heck my original Steam account was completely deleted, no idea why nor how. I didn't have much on it (Portal and a few other titles), but it was still annoying finding that out.

Combine those little issues with the awful customer service and I'm not a particularly happy camper. I'd be happy to jump ship if a viable alternative came about.
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Old 9th May 2014, 10:57   #9
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I use Steam all of the time, to talk to most of my friends, as well as play games, I'm now at the stage where if a game is on Steam I see it as an advantage as it keeps things together.

However it's far from perfect, as others have said its customer service is just dreadful, and not being able to return games without kicking up a real fuss is also pretty rubbish.
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Old 9th May 2014, 11:07   #10
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OMG they've pulled 3 games....its a sign HL3 is on the way.
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Old 9th May 2014, 11:19   #11
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Never had major issues if people want to buy early access that's the chance they take. Look at all the cash people have paid for star citizen it's not even playable yet. Among other things on kickstarter in truth.

What I don't want to see is a apple style store where they and only they say what goes on it.

Steam is better than the alternative ( there is none) EA store works fine for EA games but nothing else and it's not what I'd call cheap even in the sales.

Brought a lot of stuff from steam in sales the amount of brand new titles I've brought must be below 10.

The ability to sell games is not really relevant, as till they allow the usage of the serial most of the games are worthless. EU law is so iffy on the facts from the way it reads you can sell your game but nothing tied to the game. ( so no online access no extras Ect)

There's places where you can pick up a 3 month old thief for 7 euro. The only things I'd sell are games I did not like but I paid small cash for.

Max Payne 3 for example but I only paid £2.50 for it. That's less than a pint.
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Old 9th May 2014, 11:23   #12
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I'm going to defend Towns here a bit. To me Towns feels like a completed game. I feel like more to do in it than A Game of Dwarves, and I've found it enjoyable. Could the devs have added more? More than likely. The last time I played, which was a while back, there wasn't anything to do with fishing in it, something everyone wanted and the devs said they were going to add it. Whether they actually added it or not I don't know, but did they really need to add it? Not really. There were ways of getting food and making items without it. It wasn't a case of there's an item in the game that we can't get because fishing hasn't been implemented. I believe you could actually buy fish but I'm not 100% on that.

I feel the problem is that people expect the game to be done to their standard, and since the game is still in development, they expect it even more. It seems to me that a lot of people expect the game to be developed forever (ala Minecraft) which isn't entirely realistic and even with MC they'll eventually stop adding stuff. I do think however, that these games are too expensive. I got Towns on sale, and while I think £10 is a bit of a stretch in terms of worth, it is worth £5. Especially considering it's 'wasn't finished'.

Any, that's my opinion. I doubt it's relevant to the other games mentioned, and I haven't played any of them.
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Old 9th May 2014, 12:52   #13
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However, that doesn't completely excuse the buyer. If you're buying games without reading reviews and looking at the community responses, then you've got to accept that you're taking a gamble. With early access games, for instance, I think you've got to accept everything that improves as a bonus.
I agree, but what should be done when the developer changes what is posted in the community discussions, or uses pseudonyms to post glowing reviews. Maybe Valve needs to setup the equivalent of the trading standards and fine developers for misleading advertising and the like.
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Old 9th May 2014, 13:15   #14
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I agree, but what should be done when the developer changes what is posted in the community discussions, or uses pseudonyms to post glowing reviews. Maybe Valve needs to setup the equivalent of the trading standards and fine developers for misleading advertising and the like.
I don't know about misleading advertising, because it's very hard to say what is and isn't misleading, but certainly editing people's posts in the community discussions is unacceptable.

To be honest, I would be surprised if there isn't already a Steam policy about that - I can't believe that they would give developers the ability to moderate comments without stating what that ability should be used for.
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Old 9th May 2014, 13:29   #15
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Just logged into steam and Earth Year 2066 is sitting in the recently updated section. I thought steam had pulled it and refunded everyone.
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Old 9th May 2014, 14:06   #16
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I've not been able to buy one single game off of Steam due to technical errors. The games also cost more than physical copies do ordered over the internet (not taking into account sales). For these two reasons I wouldn't care if Steam went under.
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Old 9th May 2014, 14:24   #17
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Certainly don't agree with steam publishing unplayable crap on their website but its 2014 and I refuse to buy before I research now - I was too close to buying aliens colonial marines on release day then after a 1 minute check found a review! And wow what a saving that turned out to be. It fascinates me that this can happen do they not even test a title before publishing it?
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Old 9th May 2014, 14:33   #18
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The problem here seems less to be steam publishing crap than allowing publishers to modify comments. One man's trash remains another's treasure, but people need to be able to write and read honest reviews. Sure, some people will abuse the ability to write reviews, but letting the game's creator be the editor strikes me as the real problem here.

I'm all for letting people publish whatever they want (within reason), but let the marketplace honestly decide what is worth buying.
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Old 9th May 2014, 15:00   #19
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Selling access to unfinished games is the real problem and it ain't just happening on Steam.

It's simply the next big scam after DLC.
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Old 9th May 2014, 15:32   #20
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Just logged into steam and Earth Year 2066 is sitting in the recently updated section. I thought steam had pulled it and refunded everyone.
AFAIK you can request a refund. I don't think everyone has been given one automatically.
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