Didimatic: Easy Way To Follow Steam Sales

By John Walker on June 28th, 2010 at 11:00 am.

I've always wanted my own field

You may have noticed that Steam is having one of its crazy-ass sales, this time under the name of “Perils of Summer”, pointing out the dangers of leaving the house during the Summer months. (I’m at the beach right now! Woo!) As you might have grown to expect there are some ludicrous daily offers, and you can go find those – we’re not their advertisers you know. However, we do want you to play great games without paying lots, so it’s worth pointing you in the direction of Didimatic, a site that lists all the current sale prices on the various digital download sites. (Didimatic is short for “the digital-distribution-o-matic 2000″, of course.)

Which contains the mind-boggling list of sale prices on Steam that will be that way until the 4th July. (Why does Valve think the Summer ends on Independence Day? What do they know? Are they planning to blow up the Sun?)

If you check Didimatic it lists sales for Direct2Drive, GamersGate, GOG, Impulse and Steam, with the latter currently boasting a ridiculously long list. GamersGate’s isn’t exactly a short list, and well worth exploring. However, Steam’s is still five times longer, making them the winners of a competition no one was having.

Don’t say we never do anything for you.

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47 Comments »

  1. Tei says:

    Nice.. but a bit hard to use (not sorting options).
    You can add sorting options using a “sort table bookmarklet”
    Copy the link “sort table” from this page.
    https://www.squarefree.com/bookmarklets/pagedata.html
    Go there:
    http://didimatic.com/dd/en/onsale/steam
    Then remove the url, and paste the bookmarklet there, press enter. On the headers of the colums a text “a/d” is added, for easy sorting.

    • Tei says:

      Example:
      that way is easy to find that Ghost Master is 0.95€
      http://store.steampowered.com/app/6200/
      note: since the order is alfabetical, is a bit weird ( alfabetical order is somewhat like this: 10, 12, 13, 15,2, 21,22 )

    • lhzr says:

      thanks tei, works great

    • lhzr says:

      except that if you sort it by price, you’ll get $20 before $2. still better than no sort at all, though!

    • Rich says:

      I just decided I wouldn’t buy anything for more than £2, so searched the page for “£0.” and “£1.”.

    • bansama says:

      I do apologize for the complete lack of sorting functions. They are planned but unfortunately, I simply haven’t had the time to code them. I’m sure it must sound like a very simple 10 minute job to do, but it’s far more time consuming than that and what little time I have had lately for coding, has gone in squashing bugs and providing support for other sites.

      While I can’t promise that options for sorting will be in place before this current huge Steam sale ends, I’ll certainly do what I can to ensure they are in place before the next large sale.

    • groovychainsaw says:

      Thanks Tei – genius bodged solution!

    • oceanclub says:

      Any idea how to copy the “sort order” bookmarklet to another page in IE8? When he says “drag them to your Bookmarks Toolbar”, (a) I can’t see such a toolbar in IE8, and (b) what do I drag – the [Sort Order] button? The IE8 logo?

    • lhzr says:

      @oceanclub: right click the sort order button and choose copy shortcut. then go to didimatic and paste what you copied in the address bar and press enter

    • Tacroy says:

      Bansama: You could use JQuery and DataTables. It’s incredibly slick, and gives you pagination, sorting and searching for free. Judging by the page source, it would mostly Just Work ™ with your current layout. The only things I can see are that you’d have to modify your header row to use the [thead] html element, and I don’t know how well DataTables will work with your current styling.

  2. c-Row says:

    Their Steam list seems incomplete and in strange order. They list Civ both as “Civilization” and “Sid Meier’s Civilization” while completely omitting the complete Civ 4 pack for a tenner. (EUR)

  3. Carra says:

    Some deals that don’t make sense as usual. The complete Introversion package for €5? Yes please. But why are Darwinia, defcon & multiwinia all priced at €5 too?

    This offer does seem to eliminate all competition for the moment. THQ complete pack on impulse “sale”: €95, on steam: €45 ( £26.49). £26 for dawn of war 2, titan quest, stalker, red faction, metro 2033, company of heroes,… Hard to pass if you do not already own most of these games.

    In any case, it’s a good way to see if Steam screws us with their pricing like they seem to do with the THQ sale.

  4. TotalBiscuit says:

    Shameless self-promotion ahoy!

    I went through the sales list with a fine toothcomb a couple of days ago and came up with a list of stuff that probably won’t get discounted any further, that’s worth picking up for the price – http://www.cynicalbrit.com/news/how-to-survive-the-summer-steam-sale/

    And I’m doing short daily podcasts with information on each game in the daily sales, because thinking for yourself is hard – http://www.cynicalbrit.com/gaming-express/1603/

    • standardman says:

      Um that was to TotalBiscuit, didimatic’s great too though. The guy running it is bansama on twitter

    • TotalBiscuit says:

      Isn’t that what I said? O_o

    • bansama says:

      Unless you’re REALLY desperate to get playing a title straight away, why not just wait until the last day of the sale

      The downside to that is possibly missing some really cheap prices. For example, The Witcher was 66% off for the first day or two of the sale, but has now been set to only 33% off. Ultimately, if you’re happy with the price displayed, buy the game. Else, take the gamble =)

      I do agree with TotalBiscuit’s advice regarding games at 75% off or more though. They really are very unlikely to get a higher discount and even if they did, it’s not going to be a very noticeable saving compared to the 75% off price, so you may as well pick those up right away.

    • Arthur Barnhouse says:

      Also, if the game is $3 or under just buy it. It hard to justify some weirdo-beardo games for $10 or $20, but for $3? Just buy it, it might be good and if not you’ll have at least tried it.

  5. Skurmedel says:

    About the Steam Sale, where has Guerilla gone too? It used to be available on Steam no?

  6. Saul says:

    Not a very Southern Hemisphere-friendly justification for a sale, but groovy nonetheless. Of course I just bought The Witcher a couple of weeks ago. Not much else I really want at the moment.

  7. Cooper says:

    If someone extended this database to amazon and Play.com… It would probably end up becoming snetient and enslaving the human race via the cheapest prices on games.

    I still buy most of my stuff retail because that’s where the cheapest prices for many games still are…

  8. Jimbo says:

    Perfect. I was hoping somebody would do this.

  9. standardman says:

    Very useful guide, thank you!

  10. malkav11 says:

    As much as I do like Steam’s store interface most of the time, it is woeful failure at handling sales of this magnitude.

  11. Mancubus says:

    Waaaay better by all means. Only thing it lacks is GOG prices.

  12. yutt says:

    I have a similar site that isn’t really ready for public, but is useful to my friends and I: http://gamesavr.com

    I currently track most of the digital portals sales along with GoGamer. Not sure how useful it would be to UK folks. Someday (provided time and motivation) I’ll track UK sales too.

  13. Talorc says:

    Here is another one:

    http://www.steamprices.com/

    My favourite because it handles all the different steam regions (US, UK, Aus, Euro x2) and has a very nice interface. I can see if I am getting ripped on regional pricing easily :-)

    Bansama – which region are your Steam prices coming from?

    • Talorc says:

      Obviously I should note steamprices.com is Steam only :-). Here is another one if you like your html raw:

      http://steamunpowered.eu/price-guide/
      http://bo-it.org/SU/list.html

      Does Steam, Gog and Impulse

    • bansama says:

      My favourite because it handles all the different steam regions (US, UK, Aus, Euro x2)

      That’s not all the regions =) Steam covers way too many regions to realistically be able to grab them all. While prices may be generally the same in most of the others, availability isn’t. Japan for example gets some pricing that’s even worse than Australia and restrictions worse than Germany.

      Bansama – which region are your Steam prices coming from?

      At the moment, Didimatic covers US, UK and France* pricing for Steam, US, UK and Sweden** pricing for GamersGate, US, UK and France pricing for Impulse, US, UK and EU pricing for D2D, and US pricing for GOG. I have been considering fetching restriction/pricing information for Australia, Germany and Japan as well, but probably won’t do so until after adding the sorting functions people are asking for. I also need to take into consideration the huge amount of data I already fetch from each of these services due to fetching multiple regions for all services (except GOG who only charge in USD).

      * France is in the highest pricing tier for Euro pricing which is why it’s used.
      ** Sweden is used as that’s where GamersGate is based.

  14. Navagon says:

    Been using Didimatic for quite some time. Good to see them getting some recognition as the best place to check out DD sales.

  15. Vinraith says:

    This is a nice tool, though I wish it included some retail outlet prices as well. One of the easiest traps to fall into with digital distribution is failing to notice when a real copy is actually cheaper than any of the digital distribution prices, sale or not, on a given game.

    • Tei says:

      A page like this one, can do really fun things, like calculate a imaginary “Fun for Bucks” score, based on metacritic score. Even filter out the games you already own on Steam (if your list of games is public). Anyway I can imagine all these things take a lot of time to code, and a page like this one is usefull if is updated often, but this can be a lot of work, even if is mostly updated automatically (I don’t think Steam and these people is as cool as provide the prices in a xml file, so I suppose some webscrapping is needed, and these things tend to break ).
      What I mean, is that you don’t have to stop at the actual price. You could go crazy with these numbers.

  16. myros says:

    Nice, well spent £30 for a whole bunch of games (and expansions) I skipped the first time around. More than enough to keep me busy till Civ V or something :)

  17. Urthman says:

    What I really want is a service that will watch all the sales and e-mail me when a particular game falls below a given price.

    Select Game

    (etc.)
    Notify me when price falls below $[ ] enter your desired price.

    • Tei says:

      Sounds like something you can do with regular expressions, a RSS generator that support webscrapped, duct tape and alien technology.

    • Vinraith says:

      For some reason, Gamersgate is the only one of the digital download vendors that has that function. They’ll email you whenever the price drops on games you select for you alert list.

    • bill says:

      Gamestracker does that, at least for a lot of online disc-based stores like cd-wow and The Hut. I don’t know if it copes with digital download services. Also, it only works in major regions.

      Bansama’s didimatic is cool, and he’s been really helpful on the GOG forums, but until it has sorting options i’ve been mostly using another steam price comparison site, that was mentioned above. Best of luck with it though! Get sorting options and you’ll be the best!

  18. KEMARI says:

    Got GTA Episodes with both Lost & Damned and Ballad of Gay Tony for £9.99 at the weekend. Bargain! :-D

  19. LionsPhil says:

    AvP2000 for 75p.

    Oh god. Lifts. Arrrgh. They terrify me.

    THERE ARE NOT ENOUGH FLARES IN THE WORLD.

  20. Tom Lillis says:

    Ooh, nifty.

    Lewie’s going to be right pissed when he gets back from Glastonbury and discovers he’s been usurped, though. If the code for this thing improves to the point where it provides both sale prices AND pithy commentary on said sale prices, he might have a problem!

  21. Torgen says:

    Chris D says:

    Dammit Steam! If I save any more money I’ll be completely broke. And also out of time and hard drive space.

    I think CompUSA ratted me out and told Steam I just bought a new 1.5TB hard drive, since my games partition was full. :P

    I’m picking up LOTS of stuff I was curious about, but didn’t want to drop $20 or more on, being poor as I am, and that;s exercising a good deal of restraint!

    Also, the last three days, Steam’s install servers have been overloaded, taking several times to get some of the stuff installed.

  22. Hotels on Korcula says:

    Very well done! Congrats.

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