What Would You Like To See Valve Change About Steam?

What Would You Like To See Valve Change About Steam?

Steam is great, but nothing's perfect. Valve's beast of a service is colossal, multifaceted, with a million different limbs being pulled in a million different directions. Inevitably, it sometimes falls flat. What features do you wish Valve would add to Steam? Or take away?

Personally, I can think of a bunch, but for simplicity's sake I'll focus on one area of Steam for now: Steam Groups. I think they need to be massively improved. Group page functionality is barebones verging on barren, with only basic chat, discussion, and event features keeping people from drifting apart. Meanwhile, finding interesting groups that weren't started by people you already know is damn near impossible, given that you can only search for groups based on their names and not, say, whether they focus on new players, casual players, high-level play, or even more outside-the-box goals like role-playing or playing violent games totally non-violently, etc.

It's no wonder many game communities either a) converge on their game of choice's Steam hub page, turning it into an overcrowded, disorganised madhouse or b) build their own treehouses via Facebook or forums or Reddit or what have you. As is, Steam Groups are frustratingly limited outside a very narrow range of uses. I can't remember the last time one I was a part of stuck together for long, let alone one that did anything particularly interesting.

So that's my bit. How about you, though? What would you like to see Valve improve or change about Steam? What specific features would you like to see added or tweaked? Answer as specifically as possible, because I'm planning to round-up answers and turn this into a consistently updated post — a list of suggestions that might ultimately lead to Steam becoming a better, more intuitive service for everybody. So yes, with all that said, fire away.

(Oh, and if you're planning to reply "Steam Greenlight" or "customer service," know that I'm already very much in agreement with you.)


Comments

    The ability to search your library based on tags

    Kinda sad really but a way of grouping or having multiple wishlists. There are so many games out now that sometimes I just want to flag something as interesting that I might look at down the track.

      You can use the follow option next to the wishlist to keep track of updates and announcements for games without them having to clog your wishlist, but like you, I feel that what is there could do with some refinement!

        Yeah but then I still can't get a list of the games I follow that I don't have
        It is more of a 'that is interesting' I want to keep that on my radar and check it out more when I have some time. Or even just to check back in a month or 2 and see if friends have picked it up.

    Prices in AUD. That is all.

      If those numbers get any higher my head will explode...

      I was thinking about that the other day, there must be a browser extension for it.

    I would love to say local pricing but that will force the price of new games up.

      The pricing is already local and it does force the price of new games up. New AAA games on Steam AU are almost double (or sometimes worse) what they go for in the US, even though the price is still in USD.

      https://www.steamprices.com/au/topripoffs

    A big sign on the front every time you log on:

    WE REGION LOCK JUST LIKE - OR IN SOME CASES WORSE THAN - EVERYBODY ELSE. DEAL WITH IT.

    Remake the Steam client from scratch. It's slow and clunky and very much a victim of "hey, new feature, add it to the rest".

    Origin may be a PITA, but the client is clean looking and more importantly, responsive.

      I do agree it can be sluggish (Especially if you don't have an SSD, but that's not the clients fault) and could use a bit of a facelift.

      The visual style has changed subtly over the years but I still feel like I've been staring at the same shades of dull blue and black for years now (I play with skins, but the official skin looks more authentic).

      That's because the Steam client is half web browser, and the built in browser sucks! For browsing I highly recommend using the real Steam website, and then only use the client for actual gaming.

      I really don't know where the 'responsive' bit comes in for Origin...

      I've used them on both a standard HDD and SSD and they're perfectly fine if you're just browsing your own game library information and the likes. The moment you want to access anything involving information that isn't stored locally on your system, such as the stores, then the response time is just as bad for both... And I'd wager more than anything it has to do with the authentication steps they are required to put forth when accessing said information, otherwise you'd have to log in as if you were visiting the pages in a typical web browser.

      The single difference is that Steam offers a LOT more information overall that is retrieved in that manner. Update news per game, profiles, forums, etc. So of course based on pure volume it is going to have more instances of this sluggish web-browser nature than Origin.

      But sure, fault it for offering things that Origin simply doesn't. That makes perfect sense.

    I want them to stop allowing games with 3rd party bullshit launchers like Uplay.

      Yes! Valve needs to stand up to Ubisoft and EA. I know that means there will probably be less games, but as it is now I plan to pirate Far Cry 3 for example because I got burned with Drive San Fransisco and Far Cry 2. I'm just not going to give ubisoft any more money until they get rid of uplay.

      Then prepare to have to actually buy those games through things like Uplay itself.

    I would like a synopsis of the game on the library page, along with tags and so on so you at least know what the game is about or what kind of game it is. I've got over 500 games in there, a lot of which came from things like Humble Bundle and it's tedious to check the store page of the unknown games to find out which category to put it in.

    Also the ability to ctrl+click the games and assign them to multiple categories at the same time. If programs like depressurizer can do it, then Steam should be able to do it.

    Also the grid view could look nicer, without having to load each image every time you scroll down the page.

    To be fair, a lot of Steam really needs a total design overhaul but I can't see that happening anytime soon.

      Also the ability to ctrl+click the games and assign them to multiple categories at the same time. If programs like depressurizer can do it, then Steam should be able to do it.

      You can already to that one

        Funnily enough I never tried, I just assumed it couldn't.

          I'm pretty sure this was added later. Games can be in multiple categories and ctrl+click does work

      +1 for synopsis and tags on library page. For precisely the same reasons you mention

    The ability to hide games that arent installed

      It has that already. Top of the list is a drop down tag and select installed only.
      it is how mine is set.

    I'd love to remove all of the crap they have added in the last 12 months to make it more like a social media platform.

    Some sort of highly visible 'alert' or 'current status' update feed on the home screen for when their 'transaction processing' is down. Instead of going through the entire purchase process and being told there is a problem with my credit card.

    The screenshot options could be better. Right now it's compressed jpg, and uncompressed saved in a separate folder. Which is great, however it would be nice to have some sort of control over your images before you chuck them into photoshop or similar editing software. My screenshots always come out darker, and it is because on some graphics cards you have to manually adjust the settings to match a certain games in-game brightness and contrast.
    Sometimes you just want to quickly post an awesome screenie of your achievements without having to much about with it first for 30 mins.

    Also the ability to import screenshots made from your steam games but without the steam capturer. (like regular old PrntScrn or capture card). This might lead to more trolling too I get that but it would be nice for once.

    Segregation of Early Access games from the main marketplace!

    Is there a way to filter a list to NOT show games you have already purchased? e.g. when looking at all the games that are on sale each week, removing ones you have already bought from the list. I know that the game is tagged with a blue or white marker (Library / Wishlist) but yeah, I guess I'm a bit lazy sometimes

    Remove Early Access and Greenlight. Yes there has been some good games on their but holy shit there is so much crap that comes from there ripping people off. I want it gone.

    Prices in AUD.

    And lastly what Tigerion said about searching your library based on Tags.

    With the Early Access and Greenlight. I think it's great we can have the ability to support devs and provide feedback as a game is being built. But, ugh. It just needs to go.

    1. Ability to increase font sizes (critical!)
    2. More sorting options on game list, including by tag and genre. Ability to set search preferences as default.
    3. A more sophisticated suggestion algorithm. (ie. just because I played a game with anime art once doesn't mean I need to now see every anime game on steam in my recommendations list!)
    4. Ban achievement hacking.
    5. Make my friends recently played game list more easily accessible again. I used to be able to find the list of what my all my friends collectively had been playing, now it's buried so far that if it exists I can't find it at all.
    6. The ability to compare my achievements on a game with my entire friend's list (eg 10 friends have this achievement).
    7. The ability to do something interesting with badges, or at the very least, the ability to choose the few badges which are displayed on your profile, instead of the most recent ones only.
    8. Give the curators a higher profile on the main page.

      1. Not important to me but can see the need
      2. Absolutely, this is my number 1 change
      3. Would be good. The first thing I would like is to remove because you looked at this game suggestions when the game you looked at was in the recommended list and you said not interested
      4. Already done and will get you a VAC ban.
      5. Yes
      6. Interesting thought, not sure how helpful interesting it is. A filter to compare to friends would be good, rather than needing to view each persons profile separately
      7. Can already be done, edit profile, change the showcase style to "selected badges" and pick which ones you want
      8. I like how curators are done at the moment

        7. Not the showcase, the section on the right after "Currently Online".

    The ability to activate multiple products on steam at once.

    Proper Explorer style folder and file management of the library. Using tags is so clunky and frustrating to manage. The tags are good as metadata when searching and filtering but managing the library itself is a pain at the moment.

    Tabbed browsing is another thing. The "Back" button is a lot better now it doesn't lose your search place but you can still only look at one thing at a time.

    Number one on my list though is to fix the wishlist and stop it randomly re-ordering my list all the time and sometimes not removing things properly. It would be fantastic to be able to purchase items directly from the wishlist too.

      On your second point, are you talking about the in-game browser? It's had tabbed browsing for a while, at least in normal desktop mode. I don't know about Big Picture mode.

    A better library search with in game pictures etc. I have too many games and forget what a lot are without being reminded

    I want a button above the buy button that basically runs a test on your system, compares it to the game, and then tells you that you can/cannot run the game... or that it'll require X driver, or that it'll run at max/medium/low on your system.

    Clunky interface, region locking, social media "features," achievements, collectors cards, drm inside my drm (uPlay, Rockstar, etc), Australia tax on downloads, it being compulsory for hard copy, single player games. Urgh, Steam.

    A better search function whilst searching to purchase new games.
    They could easily implement common advanced search engine result restrictions such as; 'games published between year range', 'games with metacritic rating between', 'games with price of min-max', 'games not from certain publishers'.
    At the moment it seems you can only search by terms and user defined game tags and I find myself being forced to go by what games are deemed popular.

    Universal pricing - no more price discrimination or geo-blocking. Everyone pays the same price regardless of where they are.

    DRM Free - DRM doesn't stop piracy, it only inconveniences legitimate paying customers and restricts fair use (see examples below)

    Second Hand Market/Transfer of games - I should be able to sell my games or given them away to someone else when I don't want them anymore.

    Family Sharing - The moment I start using my library the other person I've shared with can't use it. If we're playing two different games then it shouldn't matter. Quite often I'll be playing one game and my son will want to play another through his account.

    Option to remove the curators entirely. Some people like them, but having the option gets rid of them for those that don't. No interest to follow what strays on the internet think is good or not.

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