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Post by Dan @ 11:01am 20/06/13 | 14 Comments
The ever-resourceful crowd over on the NeoGAF forums (thanks Kotaku) have discovered hints in the data files of the latest beta version of the Steam client that indicate Valve might be developing a system to allow users to share games in their Steam library.

Specifically, these three lines contained in the file Steam/Public/steamui_english.txt, a text data file that contains the Steam client's dialogue box content for English language:
"SteamUI_JoinDialog_SharedLicense_Title" "Shared game library"
"SteamUI_JoinDialog_SharedLicenseLocked_OwnerText" "Just so you know, your games are currently in use by %borrower%. Playing now will send %borrower% a notice that it's time to quit."
"SteamUI_JoinDialog_SharedLicenseLocked_BorrowerText" "This shared game is currently unavailable. Please try again later or buy this game for your own library."
The wording of the messages strongly suggests a digital sharing system not dissimilar to the one Microsoft had been touting for the Xbox One before their recent sweeping change in used-game strategy, whereby a user could share games from their library with a limited number of other online users, but a given game license can only be in use by one person at a time.

Features that never materialised have been hinted at in the bowels of Steam before, so we'll have to wait and see if it's for real, but if true, it would undoubtedly be a welcome addition.



steamdrmvalve softwarerumour





Latest Comments
D3FCON
Posted 11:16am 20/6/13
Me Likey :) Me Likey alot. My brother and I between us have over 140 Steam Games and it would be nice to share them easily, We do have each others login info so that helps and allows us to do so but a more easier and nicer way will be muchly appreciated. GO STEAM FOR THE WIN. I can see Origin never doing this hah hah so it may be a chance for steam to reclaim 100% of the market and allow us to get cheaper EA games again
groganus
Posted 11:31am 20/6/13
Now my son is getting a bit older id love to share selected titles between us and let him have his own steam account.
bepatient
Posted 01:48pm 20/6/13
Really good news although I can't see publishers allowing the sharing of existing licenses (apart from Valve games) as I'm guessing it would significantly drop their sales on older games... but hopefully I'm wrong.
TiT
Posted 01:54pm 20/6/13
Yeah this would be awesome, i just give my dad my login when he wants to play games randomly, but will be awesome, i have over 200 games :)
Khel
Posted 02:04pm 20/6/13
F*****g Steam wanting me to be online to authorise my game library. F*****g bulls*** DRM, if I buy the game I should be able to do whatever I want with it and sell it to whoever I want and give it to whoever I want without any restrictions.

Oh wait, sorry, I forgot this is Valve and not Microsoft, I forgot when I'm supposed to like this stuff and when I'm supposed to hate it. All good, carry on.
groganus
Posted 02:15pm 20/6/13
Oh wait, sorry, I forgot this is Valve and not Microsoft, I forgot when I'm supposed to like this stuff and when I'm supposed to hate it. All good, carry on.


It's a little different when you buy something aware of the terms and conditions. I have no problems with the steam purchase method for the most part, With steam games I still own them, when they downloaded on my computer I can do what i like with them, from modding, to hacking to cracking (within what's acceptable of the games specific EULA).

Whilst i'm sure your jab was partially sarcastic I still thought id point it out.

But this is one reason why this particular DRM model works so well on PC and not on consoles, you give up complete ownership when the system these files are on are as locked down and controlled as the servers storing the content.

Microsoft went about digital distribution the wrong way. They did it the typical Microsoft way and pissed off the most overly sensitive group of people on the internet.
Khel
Posted 02:24pm 20/6/13
Heh, yeah, it was mostly sarcastic. But I still think theres a little bit of truth to it
groganus
Posted 03:01pm 20/6/13
There is a bit of truth to it,

I remember the nerd rage like it was yesterday, CounterSrike, Steam and HL2, People cried but gamers were a smaller group back then. When valved announced that HL2 would require online activation people were so s*****, and eventually people came around.. And now PC gaming is all about online activation... Valve were in the bad books well be before then *cought* www.qgl.org/blamegen *cough*


I can't remember the last time that the internet wasn't required in some way for a game to work.. F*** I bought Farcry 3 retail, came home and tethered my computer to my phone to activate it cause i had just moved house and had nothing to do and no land line internet... But I was able to disconnect once activated and play for a week with out the hassle of logging back in.

I was also able to download the patch from another source at work and install it when I got home to fix game breaking bugs...

Microsofts DRM plans were not well thought out, I'm confident they weren't trying to be d**** but I do feel like the 24hour check in and Family Sharing business was tacked on last minute as a knee jerk reaction to the possibilities of people crying.

I am very surprised that steam are looking in to game sharing at the same time I welcome it, DRM is part of gamings future, particularly online distribution. To find a way for a house hold to share this content between devices with out breaking the EULA is great for consumers and hopefully in some way it pays off well for publishers and developers.

Valve appear to have learned a lot over the years, the games they make they ensure are affordable and fairly priced in every region, they have continued to improve the steam client and it's not only a gaming distribution platform but also a social hub for gamers, every time i use steam i find some new feature that wasn't there before that makes the service better.. And this is why gamers now have confidence in Valve..
BoDGie
Posted 03:33pm 20/6/13
skythra
Posted 04:33pm 20/6/13
F*****g Steam wanting me to be online to authorise my game library. F*****g bulls*** DRM, if I buy the game I should be able to do whatever I want with it and sell it to whoever I want and give it to whoever I want without any restrictions.Oh wait, sorry, I forgot this is Valve and not Microsoft, I forgot when I'm supposed to like this stuff and when I'm supposed to hate it. All good, carry on.

F*****g life making me physically call a courier, pay them, and have them deliver to an address to give my friend a game. Else I'd have to meet up with him at some organised time and place so we are able to meet in person just because a game is physical and must therefore be in the same place in space and time to be able to be given to a friend physically. What a waste of my and their valueable life.

This kind of bulls*** pisses me off.
trog
Posted 04:42pm 20/6/13
Pretty awesome. There are certainly games that I'd probably like to borrow from people to have a crack that I couldn't be bothered buying myself - although when Steam do so many awesome deals it's often hard to justify not just buying them on a whim.
Hogfather
Posted 05:05pm 20/6/13
What gets me going is the way that account-locked digital download versions of games are usually so similar (or worse!) in price to the discs. F*** me Nintendo, I WANT to download games so I don't have to trust my kids with discs, but its cheaper to get them from JB and I can on trade them if they are boring later?

F*****s
kos
Posted 06:32pm 20/6/13
I still hate Steam like I did the day it came out. It's still a buggy, poorly designed POS with an ugly, unnecessarily customised UI. I'm also sick of the UI becoming completely unresponsive whenever it's trying to do anything at all.

Oh and I'm still waiting for them to let me change my username, god damnit.
Whoop
Posted 06:37pm 20/6/13
F*****g Steam wanting me to be online to authorise my game library. F*****g bulls*** DRM, if I buy the game I should be able to do whatever I want with it and sell it to whoever I want and give it to whoever I want without any restrictions.Oh wait, sorry, I forgot this is Valve and not Microsoft, I forgot when I'm supposed to like this stuff and when I'm supposed to hate it. All good, carry on.

Actually I do feel the same way about steam but at least it has an offline mode where you can still play if you were previously logged in. Though that's never worked for me :(

I do seem to be able to play some steam games without steam running at all too as I found recently.
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