Scent of a Gamer

From the computer to the tabletop, this is all about games. Updated each week-end.

Choking on Steam

steamlogoI’ve been a fan of Steam ever since I began using it a few years ago. I had an initially negative view of it, and avoided games that required a Steam connection to run. DRM has never been my favourite thing, and I like the idea of owning the objects that I buy.

It was Civilization V that broke my resistance. I bought that game, created a Steam account, and never looked back. Since then I’ve avoided buying games that weren’t available over Steam. Talk about a complete turnaround.

A couple of things since then have changed my views once more.

Firstly, a couple of months ago, I took a computer up to my mother’s, and Steam refused to run. Locked me out of my games, said I’d not used Steam on that computer. Which was nonsense  since I’d used it the night before. I shrugged and logged in using my mother’s wireless, which I hadn’t expected to be using at all. At the time I figured maybe I’d run a Windows update that had changed the computer settings somehow, confusing Steam. Least said, soonest mended.

Or so I thought.

Yesterday it happened again, and this time there was no solution – other than choose to do something other than play my Steam games. My home internet went down due to a poor quality wireless router. A brand new wireless modem was en route, but in the meantime I’d have a couple of days of internet cold turkey. No problem I figured, so reason why I can’t give a random civilisation a whirl.

Steam refused to run. No login details for this computer, or some such. Again, nonsense  the machine was being used the day the net went down, including for Steam. Steam wouldn’t budge though, locking me out of all my games until my home internet was back up and running today.

I have very little patience for this kind of thing. These games are mine, bought and paid for. I expect to be able to use them online or off. I don’t expect Steam to be locking me out of games it knows are mine since I bought them on Steam and downloaded them to that computer. Online or off those games are mine and mine to play.

Steam’s systems have succeeded only in preventing me from playing games I have paid for. Better than that Steam has succeeded in putting off buying a game on Steam for the foreseeable future. Nice one Steam. Take that, customer!

April 2013 Update: The problem seems to be fixed now, hopefully for good.

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This entry was posted on February 16, 2013 by in Computer Games and tagged , , .
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