Another rant about PC games and Steam!

Steam and me were destined to never co-exist in peace and harmony. To be honest, I hate it with an absolute passion, for reasons directly related to my experience with it and retail PC games. It is a complete and utter pain.

I got myself a cheap copy of Empire: Total War yesterday, just $15 Au. Great I thought. I love me some RTS on the PC - a lot. So, this morning I pop the disc in the machine and oh wait - you need to get Steam working. This is 10am Sunday (today). It has to update Steam. NowI don't have a great internet - it is running on dial-up soeed as my broadband has dried up until next week and I only get 3Gb of it a month. 3 hours later, it finally completes the update.

Now to login. Oh wait, I can't remember my username - my fault, I must write that down, I just don't use Steam enough to cement it. Get an email with my username and lucky for me, I remember my password. Enter the details and now it wants to authorise this computer for Steam and apparently I have some code I should know that has to be entered. Where the hell did that come from? I have never seen this before. Now I try to contact Steam and remember another problem - stupid Windows. I run an iMac with Windows for RTS gaming. It won't connect to the internet to contact them - yet will talk to Steam to update it. I hate Windows. Why can't things be simple - put the disc in, load it up and play it. Why do they deliberately put obstacles all over the place just to piss of the consumer?

Fast forward 3.5 hours and it is 1.30pm and I still can't even get close to playing the game. I am now back on Mac and trying to login to Steam so I can get this fixed. This means I have to load Steam up on the Mac as it won't let me sign in. So, I download Mac Steam. Done. Now it is updating Steam. Fast forward another 2 hours, it is about half way through and it crashes. Hoping it would pick up from where it left, I start again and it it starts at the beginning. Trying to sign in to Steam completely fails. It just won't do anything.

Rage has taken over. I give up. So it will be a week before I can TRY to play the game I bought at a store.

Retail PC gaming isn't dying, they are deliberately killing it.

It is easy for you people with super access to high speed broadband to say how great Steam and digital is. But spare a thought for those who don't. I don't begrudge people choosing digital, but I want an easy way to play legitimately purchased PC games. If I put as many obstacles in the way of my clients to access my product, I would go out of business. It doesn't stop piracy. In fact, it fuels it. Sure as hell makes me want to get a pirated copy.

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Posted by Contrarian

Steam and me were destined to never co-exist in peace and harmony. To be honest, I hate it with an absolute passion, for reasons directly related to my experience with it and retail PC games. It is a complete and utter pain.

I got myself a cheap copy of Empire: Total War yesterday, just $15 Au. Great I thought. I love me some RTS on the PC - a lot. So, this morning I pop the disc in the machine and oh wait - you need to get Steam working. This is 10am Sunday (today). It has to update Steam. NowI don't have a great internet - it is running on dial-up soeed as my broadband has dried up until next week and I only get 3Gb of it a month. 3 hours later, it finally completes the update.

Now to login. Oh wait, I can't remember my username - my fault, I must write that down, I just don't use Steam enough to cement it. Get an email with my username and lucky for me, I remember my password. Enter the details and now it wants to authorise this computer for Steam and apparently I have some code I should know that has to be entered. Where the hell did that come from? I have never seen this before. Now I try to contact Steam and remember another problem - stupid Windows. I run an iMac with Windows for RTS gaming. It won't connect to the internet to contact them - yet will talk to Steam to update it. I hate Windows. Why can't things be simple - put the disc in, load it up and play it. Why do they deliberately put obstacles all over the place just to piss of the consumer?

Fast forward 3.5 hours and it is 1.30pm and I still can't even get close to playing the game. I am now back on Mac and trying to login to Steam so I can get this fixed. This means I have to load Steam up on the Mac as it won't let me sign in. So, I download Mac Steam. Done. Now it is updating Steam. Fast forward another 2 hours, it is about half way through and it crashes. Hoping it would pick up from where it left, I start again and it it starts at the beginning. Trying to sign in to Steam completely fails. It just won't do anything.

Rage has taken over. I give up. So it will be a week before I can TRY to play the game I bought at a store.

Retail PC gaming isn't dying, they are deliberately killing it.

It is easy for you people with super access to high speed broadband to say how great Steam and digital is. But spare a thought for those who don't. I don't begrudge people choosing digital, but I want an easy way to play legitimately purchased PC games. If I put as many obstacles in the way of my clients to access my product, I would go out of business. It doesn't stop piracy. In fact, it fuels it. Sure as hell makes me want to get a pirated copy.

Posted by Video_Game_King

@Contrarian said:

Enter the details and now it wants to authorise this computer for Steam and apparently I have some code I should know that has to be entered.

You should know it because the email it to you. In fact, I think there are words you can press that send you the code in your email. It does this every time it detects Steam on a new computer.

Posted by august

@Contrarian said:

Now I try to contact Steam and remember another problem - stupid Windows. I run an iMac with Windows for RTS gaming. It won't connect to the internet to contact them - yet will talk to Steam to update it. I hate Windows.

What?

Posted by twigger89

No offense man, but it says on the box that steam is required. If you hate steam so much (it is your opinion you are entitled to it) then you should take the 10 seconds required to make sure that you don't need steam to play the game. It is unfortunate that this whole situation happened to you, but it was directly caused by your inability to pay attention. It makes it very hard to sympathize with you.

Posted by mordukai

@Contrarian said:

...it is running on dial-up speed...

I am just gonna let that one sink in.

Posted by tourgen

yeah, I understand where you're coming from. It's a whole different gaming world on the PC if you don't have good internet access. Just make sure to check the back of the box.

Posted by august

Why is he logging into Steam on both Windows and Mac? Is it a game that works on Mac? What is he trying to "fix?"

My brain!

Posted by Tim_the_Corsair

You're an outlier. It sucks for you, but this is the same thing as complaining that you can't play a game at ultra detail on your Pentium III.

Time marches on.

Posted by iam3green

well it's pretty good when it works good.

Posted by Ares42

@Contrarian said:

Oh wait, I can't remember my username - my fault, I must write that down, I just don't use Steam enough to cement it.

I'm sorry to say it, but this is basically your problem. At this point if you plan on gaming on PC you might aswell just always have Steam running and have it auto-login etc. Just be glad Steam is still as universal as it is, in a few years things are probably gonna be way worse (hi Origin, UPlay etc).

Posted by spartanlolz92

@twigger89 said:

No offense man, but it says on the box that steam is required. If you hate steam so much (it is your opinion you are entitled to it) then you should take the 10 seconds required to make sure that you don't need steam to play the game. It is unfortunate that this whole situation happened to you, but it was directly caused by your inability to pay attention. It makes it very hard to sympathize with you.

well the fact that their requiring a good internet connection is kinda bad

but i guess stuff does have to evolve over time

Posted by ds8k

I read these stories and I just don't get it. I use Steam every day and it is an absolute dream. I used to be one of those guys that NEEDED a physical box for every game. Now that I have Steam I don't even care about it. Sorry friend, but this reeks of PEBKAC. Also, have fun downloading a pirated copy with those dial-up speeds you were complaining about.

Posted by QuistisTrepe

@Contrarian said:

NowI don't have a great internet - it is running on dial-up soeed as my broadband has dried up until next week and I only get 3Gb of it a month. 3 hours later, it finally completes the update.

Sure as hell makes me want to get a pirated copy.

Steam isn't working for you so well with a slow connection but piracy on the same connection will somehow be a better alternative?

Posted by AhmadMetallic

I'm sorry duder, you need real internet speed and a real computer. 

Posted by scarace360

you need to up your game. Go out and get a new computer and new internet.

Posted by Contrarian

@twigger89 said:

No offense man, but it says on the box that steam is required. If you hate steam so much (it is your opinion you are entitled to it) then you should take the 10 seconds required to make sure that you don't need steam to play the game. It is unfortunate that this whole situation happened to you, but it was directly caused by your inability to pay attention. It makes it very hard to sympathize with you.

What on earth are you on about? I know it need Steam, and I have an account. I assumed it would just connect to Steam, authorise it and then allow me to load it up. The box says: INTERNET CONNECTION AND STEAM ACCOUNT REQUIRED TO ACTIVATE. I have that. If only it were that simple.

@august said:

Why is he logging into Steam on both Windows and Mac? Is it a game that works on Mac? What is he trying to "fix?" My brain!

Windows to play the game ......... Mac is where I do everything else. I downloaded Steam for Mac, so I could access the site. Stupid Windows won't allow me to connect to the internet, even though Windows shows that I am connected to the internet. I have no idea why it won't connect, yet it talks to Steam - or at least it did.

Now the game just comes to a grinding halt and won't connect to Steam. This is why I hate Windows. A game should just play and it doesn't and it won't. I wasted 7 hours with no reult trying to get it to work.

@rebgav said:

@Contrarian said:

It is easy for you people with super access to high speed broadband to say how great Steam and digital is. But spare a thought for those who don't. I don't begrudge people choosing digital, but I want an easy way to play legitimately purchased PC games. If I put as many obstacles in the way of my clients to access my product, I would go out of business. It doesn't stop piracy. In fact, it fuels it. Sure as hell makes me want to get a pirated copy.

Why not install the game from the disc and then download a cracked exe? Seems like a simple solution.

Also; You sure as hell aren't going to be doing much pirating over a 56k connection.

Who says I have to use my computer to get it?

I actually expected not a single bit of sympathy from you lot over this. What you don't get it that not everyone is like you. There is a whole world of people out there who rightfully expect games to just work. My computer can run it and I have internet. I shouldn't have to go through hoops and waste 7 hours to unsuccessfully get a game to run. I am not illiterate on computers. In fact the opposite is true. Some things are beyond me though and this is one of them. It is easy for you because it is likely you are using just digital games. When I buy a retail game it should work. PC games should be just like console ones - they have security and can't be played without the disc in the PC. How hard would that be?

Posted by Rolyatkcinmai

Hey guys, I don't have a PC or the internet.

So why doesn't my gaming PC experience matchup?

Posted by Butano

Living out in the boonies, my connection usually averages under 256kb/s, but I absolutely love Steam. Sure, it takes around a day or 2 to download a larger game, but afterwards you can play in offline mode. And the deals. Those glorious deals :D

Posted by Contrarian

@AhmadMetallic said:

I'm sorry duder, you need real internet speed and a real computer.

@Rolyatkcinmai said:

Hey guys, I don't have a PC or the internet. So why doesn't my gaming PC experience matchup?

Wow, bitchy or what? I have a real computer, a superior one, that does EVERYTHING I need it to do. Also, I have internet. Sure, it is limited to 3Gb for the month, but I also get 20Gb overnight, which I really only use on the weekend when I am inclined to stay up to use it.

What do you not get? It says I need an internet connection and Steam to make the game work and it hasn't? Oh well, I am being spoken to by the PC brigade ...... nuff said.

Edited by Sinkjaer

You can turn the game updates off if you don't have the bandwidth to download it.

You are only required to use the latest version if you are playing online. But that would also be the case with are pure boxed version of the game, not just a steam version.

I also hate DRM with a passion. It's inconvenient for customers and does nothing against piracy. 99% of games are cracked on the day of release or sooner.

But there are a lot of worse DRM methods than Steam, even without all the great extra features Steam can provide if you have a more permanent internet connection.

Edit: Also if I buy a Windows game that requires internet to activate, then I would assume that it means working internet in Windows. If your internet only works in MacOS or on your Mobile Phone, then blame youself and your superior computer instead of Steam.

Edited by mortal_sb

most of your problems aren't steams fault. a slow internet connection is a killer for every web based service, doesn't matter if its steam or youtube. it said on the box that it requires steam: you should have noticed that. complaining about steam because it has a higher /deeper security system then every other platform out there is kinda crazy too. (steam guard) and "i run an IMac for RTS Gaming" is not a "real gaming computer", i'm sorry to say so. mac machines aren't high def gaming machines. RTS games aren't the most power hungry games also. (starcraft may look nice, but it doesn't need a fast computer or graphic card to run it smoothly). i can bet you that a 400$ PC with a geforce 560 or anything else in that region would run all of your games better then your 2000$ IMac. why? because the imac hardware is not optimized for windows and the games aren't optimized for mac hardware.

and yeah, i'm a steam user since day one (sept. 2003). it's almost perfect now. it was pretty shitty 5-6 years ago.

Posted by BlatantNinja23

I'm never in a position where I want to play a pc game and also don't have internet access.... But I guess I can understand how some have an issue with how steam works and how offline mode isn't always the most friendly thing out there.

Posted by 2HeadedNinja

While I understand it can be frustrating to use a service that doesn't work right for you (ask me about origin) I have to agree with most users here. Everything you said sounds like a problem on your side rather then on steams side. The 3GB limit alone kills steam as a platform.

Posted by SeriouslyNow
@Contrarian said:

@AhmadMetallic said:

I'm sorry duder, you need real internet speed and a real computer.

@Rolyatkcinmai said:

Hey guys, I don't have a PC or the internet. So why doesn't my gaming PC experience matchup?

Wow, bitchy or what? I have a real computer, a superior one, that does EVERYTHING I need it to do. Also, I have internet. Sure, it is limited to 3Gb for the month, but I also get 20Gb overnight, which I really only use on the weekend when I am inclined to stay up to use it.

What do you not get? It says I need an internet connection and Steam to make the game work and it hasn't? Oh well, I am being spoken to by the PC brigade ...... nuff said.

Your superior computer is getting in the way of your inferior experience.  I sympathise with your plight and can't possibly understand why others here would dismiss a person who clearly is well researched and educated on the subject they are discussing.  Steam is shit and you're much better than Steam.  
 
  
Posted by Deusx

I think in this case it's mostly your fault and not the software you're using. I use steam and I love it. I have lots of friends there and we play lots of games together... Maybe PC gaming isn't your thing. Sorry.

Posted by Jaqen_HGhar

@Contrarian said:

Enter the details and now it wants to authorise this computer for Steam and apparently I have some code I should know that has to be entered. Where the hell did that come from?

I am not the first to point this out, but this is where the problem went from being a problem with Steam to being a problem with you not "reading the manual". The code you are told to input is said quite specifically to be sent to your e-mail address. It is, as far as I know, a one-use code generated each time you try to access your Steam account on a new system. This is to protect you in case someone manages to guess your password, or otherwise hack into your account, and is called Steam Guard. It can only be enabled once the e-mail you use on Steam has been authorized as well, so unless you have stopped using that e-mail you should get that message.

So all of those hours of trying to get it to work on Mac and whatnot could be skipped had you just read that, checked your mail and then copy-pasted the code they mailed you into the box.

Sorry, but this is in fact a "you" problem, not a Steam problem.

I can understand how some people don't like Steam, certainly, as I have had some issues with it myself from time to time. But those issues have always been either easy to fix, or user-errors. All in all Steam is a wonderful thing, and I have all but stopped buying PC-games on disc.

Posted by supamon

I run an iMac with Windows for RTS gaming. It won't connect to the internet to contact them - yet will talk to Steam to update it. I hate Windows.

I have a real computer, a superior one, that does EVERYTHING I need it to do. Also, I have internet. Sure, it is limited to 3Gb for the month, but I also get 20Gb overnight, which I really only use on the weekend when I am inclined to stay up to use it.

What do you not get? It says I need an internet connection and Steam to make the game work and it hasn't? Oh well, I am being spoken to by the PC brigade ...... nuff said.

Hahahahahha, Mac, superior, hahahahhahaha.

Retail PC gaming isn't dying, they are deliberately killing it.

No, steam saved PC gaming from dying out by bringing a new way to reach customers globally and selling products cheaply and quickly. I strongly believe there wouldn't be a resurgence in PC gaming if it weren't for steam. Heck, steam sets such a good example that XBLA and PSN's system look archaic when compared.

Posted by ajamafalous

All of these problems are your fault, not Steam's.

Posted by Galiant
@Contrarian Steam is incredibly convenient. Most of the things you complain about are your own shortcomings or that of your computer/connection. Stating that "Steam is killing retail PC gaming" is beyond silly.

You can't remember a password, you can't read on-screen instructions, you can't get Windows to work properly on your Mac, you don't have a proper internet connection.

...and you blame it on Steam.
Edited by Questionable

@Contrarian said:

PC games should be just like console ones - they have security and can't be played without the disc in the PC. How hard would that be

What security?

http://download.cnet.com/DAEMON-Tools-Lite/3000-2646_4-10778842.html

No offense but it sounds like computers a just too complicated for you, if you cant even handle downloading steam for the right platform and retrieving a access code from your own mail box (It tell s you to right there on the screen!) just grab a console. It does not sound like you are the type that would make any use of mods and player created patches anyway so its not like you will be missing anything,

Every fallacy you mentioned seems to originate from your own shortcomings, seriously.

Posted by DjCmeP

If you don't use Steam a lot couldn't you've just made another account?

Posted by Questionable

@DjCmeP said:

If you don't use Steam a lot couldn't you've just made another account?

That would imply making sepperate accounts for all his future steam games, a logistical nightmare.

Just keep everything nice and tidy on one account and you wont ever have trouble with single usage serial codes again.

Posted by ShiftyMagician

I am only guessing you are Australian as you use AU in front of your purchase price. Ignore this paragraph if not true. If you are paying around $30 or more for that abysmal plan, cancel it. Go get a new deal with TPG or an ISP that isn't Telstra or Optus if you need it cheap. The minimum deal at TPG ($30 for 25GB on and off-peak) is significantly better than your paltry 3GB on-peak per month and it's a decent speed as far as dated Australia internet is concerned. Pay more for way more for your caps but have a look at them first.

Also all the issues you are having are problems you need to solve with tinkering settings. I'm sure your computer is fine and like most tech-savvy people who boot Windows within a Mac computer, it's just some settings you need to fix up, so go figure it out instead of complaining on the internet. Finally learn what Steam Guard is and know you can disable it, but honestly it's nothing big and you shouldn't over-react about it. Good luck solving your situation so that you can spend more time enjoying your games.

Posted by andriv

valve is run by probably the only people in retail that understand piracy. They are the reason pc games today sell.

Posted by hmmisee

It sounds like you're an idiot and blaming steam for your own misunderstandings and stupidity. Well done!

Posted by Stonyman65

@Contrarian said:

@AhmadMetallic said:

I'm sorry duder, you need real internet speed and a real computer.

@Rolyatkcinmai said:

Hey guys, I don't have a PC or the internet. So why doesn't my gaming PC experience matchup?

Wow, bitchy or what? I have a real computer, a superior one, that does EVERYTHING I need it to do. Also, I have internet. Sure, it is limited to 3Gb for the month, but I also get 20Gb overnight, which I really only use on the weekend when I am inclined to stay up to use it.

What do you not get? It says I need an internet connection and Steam to make the game work and it hasn't? Oh well, I am being spoken to by the PC brigade ...... nuff said.

If it does EVERYTHING you want it to do, then why are you bitching about it. Having bad internet is a big problem, but trying to Steam games on a Mac (even when dual booting to Windows) is dumb. If you want to play games on a PC, get a gaming PC. Period.

Posted by JoeyRavn

@Contrarian said:

Oh well, I am being spoken to by the PC brigade ...... nuff said.

Sorry, but it's you who doesn't know how to use Steam. It's neither the game's nor Steam's fault. I would have tried to help you, but you're coming off as a total douche.

Posted by Lazyaza

Seems to me like spending that 10 seconds checking the box really would have saved you a lot of hassle. Also even attempting to download a game on dial-up is retardedly pointless. Believe me I've tried doing the same and it isn't worth it. I sympathize with your miniscule download cap as we once had the same (aussie as well btw) but you are kind of complaining about a situation that is entirely your fault. Luckily the world is going through a slow but sure process of everyone getting easily accessable widely available cable internet for lower cost but its going to take time and especially in our country where things like this seem to take years longer than in other developed nations yeah its a pain. Don't even get me started on the R18 rating we should have had years ago and still don't urgh.

Posted by Questionable

@Stonyman65 said:

, but trying to Steam games on a Mac (even when dual booting to Windows) is dumb. If you want to play games on a PC, get a gaming PC. Period.

Your understanding of Mac gaming is so 2004.

Posted by Stonyman65

@Questionable said:

@Stonyman65 said:

, but trying to Steam games on a Mac (even when dual booting to Windows) is dumb. If you want to play games on a PC, get a gaming PC. Period.

Your understanding of Mac gaming is so 2004.

It's not as bad as it used to be, but still pretty janky with some games, Sometimes the hardware just doesn't want to work right.

Posted by whyareyoucrouchingspock

If you played a game like Battlefield 2 you would have to download all those patches, in a specific order, with weird names. With steam you are automatically downloading it without having to do a thing. This is especially useful for multiple (hundreds of games) saving tens of hours of faffing about. The muliplayer aspect of Total War is now vastly superior thanks to steam. With Shogun 2 I can join clan groups and freinds at the click of a button. My progress is saved online so even when I reinstall, the data still remains. With Shogun 2 a game that works with unlocking veterain units and skill trees that can take over a hundred hours, this is invaluable. Likewise DLC can be bought and automatically installed at the touch of a button, it take less than a minute. It seems to me you are having minor quibbles and just inflating them.

Posted by connerthekewlkid

@SeriouslyNow: because pc gamers, PC GAMERS

Posted by emergency

Steam fanboy here, Steam is the best thing since sliced bread. I can take my games anywhere I have an internet connection, and not have to have shelf space for 250 game cases. I'm ok with this.

Posted by Azteck

I'm going to have to agree with the rest of these guys, it seems like it's more a problem on your end rather than a steam issue. I get that it sucks but honestly, the instructions are clear, and research on the subject isn't hard to find.

Posted by AhmadMetallic

No need to be so angry and hostile, OP. None of us is forced to help you, we can ignore your thread like *snap* that. 
 
@Rolyatkcinmai said:

Hey guys, I don't have a PC or the internet.

So why doesn't my gaming PC experience matchup?

lol
Posted by Baal_Sagoth

I hear you man, I have had way too much trouble with a platform that supposedly just easily manages digital distribution and DRM of games over the years. You're experiencing Steam's "fuck you for buying it retail" approach. I do begrudgingly use the service for cheap-as-fuck deals, indie games like Bastion I can't get any more conveniently and the rare exception like Skyrim and Space Marine which are games I NEED to play no matter what and it honestly works fine for that. When I buy retail with a Steam requirement I just do it because of better pricing for a key I punch into Steam. I guess you'll have to let the fact sink in that Steam is a complete and utter piece of shit as a solution for online activation of games. I doesn't do that part well at all because it forces you to use a broad service that tries to do a billion different things at the same time. Don't buy games under the delusion that Steamworks is simple "one-click" activation! It isn't pretty, but that's the way it is.

Then again, if you use Steam as the all access bargain bin that it really is, rarely invest more than 5 to 15 bucks and have access to even low-end but constantly connected internet (like my pitiful circa 400kb/s line) it is quite nice and is hopefully another pillar of succesful PC gaming. People who make Steam out to be the best thing since crack are probably focussed on that side of the service with an enormous amount of tunnel vision going on. You know, the same ignorant people that "go with the times, are all pragmatic and shit" and start fucking whining the second Origin comes around or a game is NOT on Steam...

Posted by JoeyRavn

@Baal_Sagoth: You have a problem with Steam, and then suddenly everyone who likes it is ignorant? You're a cool guy.

Posted by Omnomnivore

@Tim_the_Corsair said:

You're an outlier. It sucks for you, but this is the same thing as complaining that you can't play a game at ultra detail on your Pentium III. Time marches on.

Pretty much this.

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