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[steam] Winter is Here

StericaSterica YesRegistered User, Moderator mod
edited December 2013 in Games and Technology

Welcome to the Steam thread!

We raised $11,903 dollars for charity this month. Wowzers!

This is a pretty neat community of people who like to talk about video games, sales, digital distribution, hat economies, classiness and classholery. We enjoy long walks on the beach, digital hoarding, gifting, the suffering of longtime members, and raising money for charity.



This is a big, busy thread. There are some guidelines to keep things nice and orderly:
  • Be civil.
  • This thread is for Steam-related discussion. Try to look for other, more appropriate threads before discussing games or other topics in here. Let's not drain other threads of precious content!
  • If you feel someone's acting inappropriately, then quietly report the responsible parties to forum mods.
  • Don't post links to active kickstarters without prior mod permission. Forum-wide rule.
  • Linking your Steam profile in your sig will help community members find you, see what kinds of games you like, invite you to MP games, etc.
  • Do not beg for games.

We have two core Steam groups: Both of these groups have chat, and both are used sometimes to try to limit giveaways to community members. If you've just arrived, hang out here in the thread for a while and talk games with us before you ask for membership.

Penny Arcade is a general Steam group for folks from the PA forums.

PA G&T Adventure Team is a group that was created in response to a profusion of game-specific Steam groups to get MP games going for smaller or older titles. Membership is locked during major sales.
HiT BiT wrote: »
Occasionally we also go on quests to slay a dragon and win the heart of a princess
The Newell needs those hearts (apparently they are used as power supply for the Steam servers).


Sometimes people gift games.
  • Don't feel that you have to gift games to be a part of this community. It's just one of many things that go on. Some people can give lots of games. Some people can give a game or two a year. Some people make amazing images. Some people find hidden indie gems and report about them. Some people relay amazing gaming moments. Some people report sales. Some people are hysterical. Etc. There are many ways to participate in this community. Gifting is just one of them and is not required.
  • If you run a contest, have entries PMed to you. The thread gets too cluttered otherwise. You can, however, post the winning entries.
  • If you receive a gift, then take a moment to thank gifter. Use the notification system so they can see your thank you post! ( @NAME. Use quotes around names with spaces. )
  • If you win a Steamgifts giveaway, in addition to thanking the gifter, be sure to mark the gift as received on Steamgifts. You tie up a gift 'slot' for the gifter until you do.
  • In addition to contests, wishlist gifting, ninja gifting, revenge gifting, pile-on gifting and giveaways, we have the new [ codes ][ /codes ] tags which can fire off one or more Steam codes (or activation links). More info about [ codes ] here.

Rare footage of a gift fight in action...


Steam sales are legendary. From small to honking massive:

Daily Deals: One game a day goes on sale at 10am PT for 24 hours.

Midweek Madness: Starts 10am PT Tuesday and ends Thursday afternoon.

Weekend Sale: Starts midday Thursday and ends with the sale rollover Monday. Sometimes accompanies free play weekends for MP titles.

Publisher Sale: Many of the publishers games will get a modest discount with a single title or franchise getting a featured day with a deeper discount. Follow the big sale guidelines.

Seasonal Sales: Mardi Gras time here in the thread. Huge swaths of games go on discount, with daily specials, flash sales, community vote sales, and whatever else the evil geniuses at Valve cook up to separate us from our money. There are often metagames such as sale achievements or collectibles or other madness that rewards buying, playing and gifting games and participating in Steam's community. The summer sale usually starts in the last week of June and runs for two weeks, and the Winter sale usually runs for two weeks across Christmas and New Year's.

Other retailers like Amazon and Green Man Gaming get into the act now too, so there are often great values to be had during sales for Steam-activatable games from other sites.

Seasonal Sales are basically a big deal around this thread.



How do I join the Steam groups?
Membership to the two Steam groups is for reasonably active community members. If you have been on the PA forums for a while and have participated, post a link to your Steam profile here in the thread and a Steam group mod will take care of you.

If you've been on the forums for three days during a major sale and your only posts have been to casually express your strong desire for certain games, your request is unlikely to find a positive reception. Ditto if your very first post on the forum is to ask for group membership. Sadly this does happen sometimes.

The best parts of this community are available to you now just by showing up. Read some posts, make some posts, ask to be invited as a guest to chat, buy some games, play some games, etc. Group membership is modest icing on delicious cake.

Where are you guys getting those nifty Steam Signatures?
Check out Alabaster Slim for his lovely signature generator. Also, don't click the Calculator link in the top bar unless you want to discover how much money you've put into your Steam account. Because there'd be absolutely no reason you'd want to know that.

How do the new [codes ][ /codes] tags even work?

Put a series of Steam activation codes (or activation links, or movie quotes, or winning lottery numbers...) inside the tags, each on its own line like this (without the spaces inside the brackets, of course):
[codes ]code 1
code 2
code 3
code n[/codes]

That will create a little box with a clickable link and a number. Each forumer who clicks the link will get a popup and a PM with the next line. Each line can only be sent out once and each forumer can only click once. It was originally designed to allow developers to hand out lots of codes for a game without some goose grabbing the lot.

Just one code thingy per post!

Note: [ code ][ /code ] is a different tag. Be sure to get that "s" up in there!

Trading cards? Badges? Steam profile levels? Boosters? FOILS?! What the hell?
Some games (more every week) now have trading cards. You can earn some of these cards by playing/idling the game. Some of them you'll need to get by trading or buying them from the Steam community market. Completing a set lets you craft a badge, which gives you an emoticon, a profile wallpaper, a coupon (usually) and profile experience. Leveling up your profile increase your friend cap, earns you customization options for your Steam profile and, allegedly, increases your chances of getting a booster. Boosters are packs of three cards that show up in your inventory sometimes. You can open them or sell them on the market. Sometimes cards are foil. Each game has a regular badge with five levels and a single-level foil badge.

But that's pure, diabolical evil!
Yes, that's right.

Can we trade cards in the thread?
You can but it's inefficient. Use the Steam feature that shows you which of your friends has the cards you are looking for. Oh, and join the Steam group we created for trading cards: PA Card Sharks


Is Steam down?!
Is it Tuesday? It's probably scheduled maintenance.

What are you people talking about? Why hats and what is an "Isy?"
Check out the handy Steam Thread Primer, written by @Smokestacks!
Steam Thread Primer:

Gaben/The Newell - Gabe Newell, Director of Valve Software. Called "Gaben" because in the commentary for older Source Engine games he would tell players to email him at "Gabe N. at" with user feedback. Used to be the subject of a lot of weight-related jokes, but those have sort of fallen out of fashion.

Serve the Newell - To buy games on Steam, to give Gaben your money. From this comic edit.

Bad Rats - An incredibly awful 'physics' based puzzle game, available on Steam, notorious for being as awkward as it is broken. Will haunt your dreams. Popular gift to give to people.

Gifting - Buying a game on Steam and giving it to another person.

Class - An attribute demonstrated by people who will generously purchase games and then give them to internet strangers.

Class War - When two or more forumers buy each other games back and forth until one of them gives up. I know this sounds really crazy, but it happens.

Bundle - Originally the Humble Indie Bundle, which was a "pay what you want" system for a group of games, now usually means any website selling a group of games (usually able to be registered on Steam) for a low price.

The Group/The Steam Group - The Penny Arcade Steam Group. Although this usually refers to the main PA Steam groups, there are many PA groups on Steam for various games (for example, PA Crime Time for Payday: The Heist).

Giveaway/A Giveaway - Usually refers to a giveaway on, a website where you list a game you want to give away, people enter, and then a winner is randomly decided among all entrants after a set time period.

Tuftoo - A corruption of "TF2" (Team Fortress 2)

Hats/The Hatconomy - The purchase and sale of in-game hats or sometimes other items in TF2. Some hats are very valuable, which is funny because they are just hats for videogame characters. People who have valuable hats or other items in their inventories sometimes get messages from random people on Steam begging for those items.

Boner Toots - Bientôt l'été, a game on Steam. Super artsy-fartsy pretentious "art" game. Also sometimes gifted as a joke.

Backlog - The list of games you have purchased, but have not gotten around to playing yet. Tends to grow over time, often to immense proportions. If you do not have a backlog yet, between the thread and the sales you will get one.

Spies/Russian Spies - People who lurk the thread or try to get into the various PA Steam groups not to participate in the community, but instead in order to try and get free games from the classy people here.

Steamsigs - Custom forum signatures that display a link to your Steam profile, as well as an image of a game you are currently playing, have played the most in the last two weeks, or have played the most over all time (if you haven't played any games on Steam in the last two weeks). Available here courtesy of forumer Suds. Having a Steam sig (or some sort of clickable link to your Steam profile in your signature) makes it considerably easier for people to add you to their friends list.

Child's Play - A charity started by the writer and artist behind PA that raises money for videogames/toys that go to children's hospitals, originally started in '03, has grown every year. Helps sick kids feel better about their time in the hospital while simultaneously refuting the idea that gamers are antisocial jerks.

Isy - Big Classy, a forumer. Formerly known as "Big Isy", he was granted the new name after donating a hefty amount of money to Child's Play during a fundraiser. Sometimes referred to as Isy, which might cause confusion to people who haven't been around very long.

The Sale/Summer Sale/Winter Sale/etc - Seasonal Steam sales. Home to absolutely ridiculously good deals. We are edging closer to the Summer Sale right now. I recommend saving up a few bucks because there will be deals galore. Seasonal sales have their own general guidelines to follow to maximize your purchasing power, they are posted in the thread often before and during the sales.

Summer Dale - A phone's auto-correction of "Summer Sale", which through some sort of internet voodoo produced an actual entity, a smooth voiced funk loving man who lives in a world where the 80s reign eternal and supreme. Also sometimes used to describe the upcoming Summer Sale itself.

Rainbow and/or Slash - Two forumers by the name of Rainbowdespair and slash000 who are notable for developing the third and fourth installments of the Penny Arcade: On the Railslick Precipice of Darkness series. Also developed Breath of Death VII and Cthulu Saves the World, two RPGs that, alone with the Rainslick games, are available on Steam.

Why are you people obsessed with Bad Rats and Amnesia?
A moment of ill-advised swagger from anoffday turned into a horrifying LP of Bad Rats which, because reasons, turned into over $6000 raised for Child's Play.

CorriganX raised over $1100 for Child's Play via Amnesia.

What is this Steamgifts site? I wish to create a giveaway! I cannot enter a giveaway!
Steamgifts is a neat site that lets people create giveaways for games on Steam. Points for entering giveaways are accumulated over time, so just wait a bit if you need points. Entry to giveaways can be limited by Steam group membership to prevent mooches from getting games.

How do I make one of those cool Steam Gifts signature giveaway banners?

I have too many games! Which do I play?
Steam Roulette randomly picks a game for you to play.

I have too many games! How do I move them to my new hard drive?
Steam Mover makes transporting your massive library much easier.

But wait! I have ALL OF THE GAMES installed! I need more space on my hard drive! wat i do?
You download Tikione Steam Cleaner and clean up that shit

The sale prices aren't right! What's going on?! Oh God, the darkness is closing in...
During the seasonal sales, you are one of a million monkeys hammering F5 at 10am PT to see the new sales. The system is always borked for 5-20 minutes. Take a deep breath. The Newell will deliver, and the new dailies will be available for 48 hours.

Why are some games not available in my region?
Publishers determine what countries get what games. Someone in a suit decided that it wasn't worth the money to make the game available to your region, so it isn't available on Steam. This also applies to cases of games having edited/censored versions showing up on Steam in certain countries. The good news is that you can generally get around this by having someone from another region gift or trade you the game.

Steam is downloading slowly. What gives?
You can head to Steam -> Settings -> Downloads + Cloud and change your download region until things improve. Since other regions are typically less populated, you will probably get somewhat better results even if the new server is in another country.

The Steam thread has a proud tradition of marrying our love of Steam and Penny Arcade in comic edits:



























Go forth, and SERVE THE NEWELL.

Sterica on


  • MalakaiusMalakaius KalamazooRegistered User regular
    The thread moved, I was confused :(

    PSN: Malakaius- | Steam: Malakaius Switch: SW-4569-5525-1983
  • IoloIolo iolo Registered User regular
    Crafting snowglobes gets you items in certain F2P games. Foil gets you five. Specifically:

    Path of Exile
    Ragnarok II
    Realm of the Mad God
    Spiral Knights
    Star Conflict
    Stronghold Kingdoms
    War Thunder

    Also, the snowglobe badge has no limit on levels. Craft new ones forever. That's some serious rat-at-a-feeder-bar shit right there.

    Snowglobe games revealed (so each of these will likely get a dedicated sale day)...


    Lt. Iolo's First Day
    Steam profile.
    Getting started with BATTLETECH: Part 1 / Part 2
    HiT BiTJragghenOneAngryPossumLostNinjaBeryllineDrakeRiokennElvenshaeStollsMudzgutKoopahTroopah
  • JragghenJragghen Registered User regular
    I love early adopters.

    Just sold Holiday Sale 2013 - Assassins Creed IV for 25 cents. There's going to be so goddamn many of those things on the market soon enough.

  • TychoCelchuuuTychoCelchuuu PIGEON Registered User regular
    Since we almost hit my second milestone I'll do it anyways, especially since I can't post threads for a while. COMIC EDITS FOR EVERYONE


    As for the sale, looks like nothing for me on day 1. The Stanley Parable is only 40% of so I'll keep holding out - no way I'm making it through my backlog before it's lower. I feel a little bad though because I want to give that guy lots of money.

    IoloBeryllineDrakeFleur de AlysElvenshaeStollsMudzgut
  • urahonkyurahonky Registered User regular
    Ah shit. AH SHIT.

    This is the kind of things i like about Steam... Also hate.

  • BigDesBigDes Registered User regular
    @jclast I thought Max Payne 3 was an absolute wretch of a game and not worth the £5 I paid for it. The only thing it had going for it was the shooting but even then you get thrown into a cutscene every two steps


  • IoloIolo iolo Registered User regular
    Also, @HiT BiT's CP drive badges are the best. <3

    Lt. Iolo's First Day
    Steam profile.
    Getting started with BATTLETECH: Part 1 / Part 2
    TychoCelchuuuIdx86Pixelated PixieLostNinjaHyphyKezzyTalus9952ElvenshaeStabbity StyleArithon32StollsRoyceSraphimMudzgutDyasAlure
  • urahonkyurahonky Registered User regular
    I shouldn't have sold all of my Steam cards...

  • mere_immortalmere_immortal So tasty!Registered User regular
    REVENGEANCE isn't out yet but you should all still buy it.

    Steam: mere_immortal - PSN: mere_immortal - XBL: lego pencil - Wii U: mimmortal - 3DS: 1521-7234-1642 - Bordgamegeek: mere_immortal
    DrovekDyvim TvarBurnage
  • tuxkamentuxkamen Registered User regular
    urahonky wrote: »
    I shouldn't have sold all of my Steam cards...

    Are the card prices spiking? O_O If so it's time to clear the shelves...

    Games: Ad Astra Per Phalla | Choose Your Own Phalla
    Thus, the others all die before tuxkamen dies to the vote. Hence, tuxkamen survives, village victory.
    3DS: 2406-5451-5770
  • JragghenJragghen Registered User regular
    Iolo wrote: »
    Also, the snowglobe badge has no limit on levels. Craft new ones forever. That's some serious rat-at-a-feeder-bar shit right there.

    Hmm? I crafted one already. It's level 1. So they definitely have levels.

    Or do you mean the number just keeps going up?

  • JragghenJragghen Registered User regular
    urahonky wrote: »
    I shouldn't have sold all of my Steam cards...

    Yes, you should have given them all to me :D

  • mere_immortalmere_immortal So tasty!Registered User regular
    Bioshock Infinite Season Pass is 75% off as well at the main game for those interested.

    Steam: mere_immortal - PSN: mere_immortal - XBL: lego pencil - Wii U: mimmortal - 3DS: 1521-7234-1642 - Bordgamegeek: mere_immortal
  • PeewiPeewi Registered User regular
    Bought Revengeance. I've been waiting for that to hit PC and now it's almost here.

  • StragintStragint Do Not Gift Always DeclinesRegistered User regular
    Is Space Hulk good? I've been wanting it but I heard some stuff about it being kind of ass.

    PSN: Reaper_Stragint, Steam: DoublePitstoChesty
    What is the point of being alive if you don't at least try to do something remarkable? ~ Mario Novak

    I never fear death or dyin', I only fear never trying.
  • GaslightGaslight Registered User regular
    Ah fuck. Ah fuck. Assetto Corsa and Dishonored on day one? I'm still not totally sure I've procured all the presents I need to for real-life family and friends yet.

  • Zen VulgarityZen Vulgarity What a lovely day for tea Secret British ThreadRegistered User regular
    Gonna just

    Buy everyone else stuff

    And forget to buy myself stuff

    Just like last year

    Already dropped a Dishonored GoTY on someone

    Now to stalk this thread

    And wait

  • slappybagslappybag Registered User regular
    edited December 2013


    all are steamgifts, all end this sunday.

    slappybag on
    IoloBrutal JBeryllinean_altHyphyKezzyRoyceSraphimTreadLife
  • mere_immortalmere_immortal So tasty!Registered User regular
    Runner 2 is super cheap, 83% off.

    Steam: mere_immortal - PSN: mere_immortal - XBL: lego pencil - Wii U: mimmortal - 3DS: 1521-7234-1642 - Bordgamegeek: mere_immortal
  • StericaSterica Yes Registered User, Moderator mod
    We nearly raised double what we did last year. Truly stellar work, people.

    I also want to thank Corrigan and iolo for their assistance in tracking donations, along with the small group I grabbed back in November to develop the initial incentives. And of course, a big thanks to everyone that donated, offered their own incentives, and generally helped make this thing a success. After last year's little impromptu torture of anoffday, I though it would be neat to turn that into an annual event to give the thread something to do while waiting on the winter sale.

    Badges will not be coming right away, but I will let you all know when I've started handing them out. In the event that you did NOT get a badge, please PM me (and me specifically) and just show me where I missed you. Our total is still preliminary because there might be donations I missed and the badge distribution will help sort that out.

    So again, thanks to everyone for making this happen, enjoy the deluge of games you're about to buy on the cheap, have a happy holiday, and we'll see you next year.

    Idx86hatedinamericaHiT BiTIcemopperOneAngryPossumBig DookieIolomere_immortalBeryllinebloodatonementHeirTransparentDrakePixelated PixieDyvim TvarToyDUreshiiAkumaHyphyKezzytuxkamenbobwocoElvenshaeStabbity StylerikdalyCroakerBCBroncbusterStollsBlendtecAtaxrxesKarozRoyceSraphimDaringDirkSoundsPlushMudzgutOatsKoopahTroopahBanzai5150vegeta_666emutheelfDoctorArchübergeekPemulisTeeManTreadLifeDyasAlureSorce
  • DrakeDrake Edgelord Trash Below the ecliptic plane.Registered User regular
    PinballFX2 Balance of the Force pack is 75% off, 2.50 US. That's probably an error, it's their newest pack and most of their stuff is at 50%.


  • iRevertiRevert Tactical Martha Stewart Registered User regular
    The holiday sale started?

    My wallet, she weeps.

    bloodatonementDyvim TvarRoyceSraphimKoopahTroopahMrVyngaardDyasAlure
  • slappybagslappybag Registered User regular
    bioshock infinite season pass 75% off @ $5

  • Idx86Idx86 Long days and pleasant nights.Registered User regular
    Drake wrote: »
    PinballFX2 Balance of the Force pack is 75% off, 2.50 US. That's probably an error, it's their newest pack and most of their stuff is at 50%.


    Good spot, I picked those up. Love those tables.


    2008, 2012, 2014 D&D "Rare With No Sauce" League Fantasy Football Champion!
  • an_altan_alt Registered User regular
    Ten minutes into the sale and @SlappyBag goes nuclear by gifting me Defcon, which is the oldest game on my wishlist.


    Pony wrote:
    I think that the internet has been for years on the path to creating what is essentially an electronic Necronomicon: A collection of blasphemous unrealities so perverse that to even glimpse at its contents, if but for a moment, is to irrevocably forfeit a portion of your sanity.
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    If you ever need to talk to someone, feel free to message me. Yes, that includes you.
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  • slappybagslappybag Registered User regular
    slappybag wrote: »
    bioshock infinite season pass 75% off @ $5

    annnd its fixed

  • Idx86Idx86 Long days and pleasant nights.Registered User regular
    edited December 2013
    slappybag wrote: »
    bioshock infinite season pass 75% off @ $5

    That included the Buried at Sea DLC, correct?

    Edit: too late, they fixed the glitch.

    Idx86 on

    2008, 2012, 2014 D&D "Rare With No Sauce" League Fantasy Football Champion!
  • jclastjclast Registered User regular
    God I'm so bad at this. I've already bought the Balance of the Force pack. In my defense, just an hour ago I said that I was hoping for cheap pinball tables.

  • kimekime Queen of Blades Registered User regular
    @Houn, noticing I didn't have the Penny Arcade games #3 and 4, went up and decided to gift them to me

    <3<3<3 you are awesome! ID: kime#1822
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  • JragghenJragghen Registered User regular
    Anyone want in on a Monaco 4-pack?

  • The Dude With HerpesThe Dude With Herpes Registered User regular
    slappybag wrote: »
    slappybag wrote: »
    bioshock infinite season pass 75% off @ $5

    annnd its fixed

    Yay, I actually got in on that. I was going to hold off on Infinite till I had played through the first two games (I know they're unrelated) but I saw the season pass for $5, knew something was wrong, and just bought it. :lol:

    Steam: Galedrid - XBL: Galedrid - PSN: Galedrid
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  • HeirTransparentHeirTransparent ... Registered User regular
    Unlike the Summer cards, the Winter cards all say "Valid until Friday, January 03, 2014 1:00:00 PM" on them. Could that mean they will just be removed from our inventories?

  • jclastjclast Registered User regular
    BigDes wrote: »
    @jclast I thought Max Payne 3 was an absolute wretch of a game and not worth the £5 I paid for it. The only thing it had going for it was the shooting but even then you get thrown into a cutscene every two steps


    Sounds like a plan. I don't need a giant download I'll be disappointed in. Besides, I'm busy shooting guys as a Big Daddy lately anyhow. Thanks!

  • AnarchyAnarchy Registered User regular
    edited December 2013
    Managed to get the Bioshock season pass for super cheap before they fixed the price. If I get nothing else, I will still be pleased.

    Anarchy on
    "Oh, well, this would be one of those circumstances that people unfamiliar with the law of large numbers would call a coincidence."
  • StericaSterica Yes Registered User, Moderator mod
    Shit, I have to reinforce my wishlist.

  • The Dude With HerpesThe Dude With Herpes Registered User regular
    I see they're going to be jerks about the flash sales this time around and make all of the excellent games everyone should own. :(

    Fortunately I own all 3 of these votes, but everyone else probably doesn't.

    Steam: Galedrid - XBL: Galedrid - PSN: Galedrid
    Origin: Galedrid - Nintendo: Galedrid/3222-6858-1045
    Blizzard: Galedrid#1367 - FFXIV: Galedrid Kingshand

    Dyvim Tvar
  • Big DookieBig Dookie Smells great! Houston, TXRegistered User regular
    edited December 2013
    slappybag wrote: »
    bioshock infinite season pass 75% off @ $5

    Where do you see that? It's still showing as 19.99 to me.

    EDIT - Oh, I see, it was a mistake and I missed it. Drats.

    Big Dookie on
    Steam | Twitch
    Oculus: TheBigDookie | XBL: Dook | NNID: BigDookie
  • TaramoorTaramoor Storyteller Registered User regular
    Given the amount of crafting going on right now I am surprised I'm not seeing any booster packs.

    Also will be interesting to see how the prices on the snow globes behave since there's no limit on the number of times you can craft the badge.

  • JragghenJragghen Registered User regular
    Aaaaaand kinda kicking myself for selling my foil for 2.50, seeing how high they've spiked.

  • Big DookieBig Dookie Smells great! Houston, TXRegistered User regular
    Well I guess hording those Summer Trading cards got me absolutely nothing. Time to finally sell.

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This discussion has been closed.