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  1. #1
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus SirKicksalot's Avatar
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    Steam Family Sharing announced

    http://store.steampowered.com/sharing

    tl;dr:
    - authorize up to 10 PCs to share your game library
    - the owners of those PCs can play your games and earn achievements, cards etc. for their own accounts
    - only one person can use this feature at a time and the lender always has access to his library; the other player will be given a few minutes to save when the lender starts a game
    - games which require 3rd party accounts/whatever can't be shared and borrowers can't buy DLC
    - if a borrower cheats or commits fraud using your library, you won't be banned but you lose sharing privileges

    Beta starts next week.

  2. #2
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    Super-cool thing.

    This is familiar to me.. (no pun intended), was not this the thing Microsoft teased about?. It made sense for the consoles, make dawn sense for the PC, if the publishers allow it.

    My familiy is going to grown a lot. I will adopt random daughter and childrens.

  3. #3
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Fumarole's Avatar
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    Well this certainly looks interesting. It seems like there's huge room for abuse, though.
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  4. #4
    Lesser Hivemind Node Velko's Avatar
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    Cool! My gf will be happy.

  5. #5
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    Oh god, that's more or less what I said Steam should do in an analysis work for university in august 2011. I should definitively convince myself that I actually have good ideas...

  6. #6
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    Now hopefully the next step is allow up to 3 authorized devices active per account. At least Sony allows 3 downloads per purchase, but to any device you sign in to. Downside is download limit, upside is I can have a game played at the same time from more than one console. Seeing how we have 2 PCs and not two PS3, where we play prefer and can only play couch co-op, I Hate having to buy two copies of a game so we can play easily through Steam (not going to deal with offline mode, plus we both like to be on our own Steam). At least this is offset somewhat by Steam sales.

    Let us play Lego games couch co-op with two Steam profiles active. We have to own two copies for use to play on our own computers (with ease) and have our own achievement tracking and playtime. Xbox has this for couch co-op.

    The Android 4.2 update was nice to add profiles. Now we can have our own separate saves and scores on the tablet.

  7. #7
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus The JG Man's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Moraven View Post
    Let us play Lego games couch co-op with two Steam profiles active. We have to own two copies for use to play on our own computers (with ease) and have our own achievement tracking and playtime. Xbox has this for couch co-op.
    I can see that coming fairly soon after/as a part of this test (or call it an extension). What I anticipate we'll see at a similar time will be game sharing/lending and trading soon. Hints of it have come through and it'd be a fantastic move if all of these things came together. The other digital marketplaces would have a lot to catch up to that they couldn't ignore too. All round, this is fantastic.
    Powered by Steam. And biscuits. I'm also a twit and dabble in creative writing.

  8. #8
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Boris's Avatar
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    It should be mutually exclusive per title, not per library.

    As I read it, when the master account plays, nothing is available to people who lend from that. It should give you access to all the other games that are not being played, IMO.

  9. #9
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus c-Row's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Boris View Post
    As I read it, when the master account plays, nothing is available to people who lend from that. It should give you access to all the other games that are not being played, IMO.
    The CVG article states that this only applies to the same title, but the description on the Steam page says otherwise. Still, interesting enough for me - my friend works as a bartender, so he won't be logged in to his library in the evening anyway. :)
    - If the sound of Samuel Barber's "Adagio For Strings" makes you think of Kharak burning instead of the Vietnamese jungle, most of your youth happened during the 90s. -

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Silgidorn View Post
    Oh god, that's more or less what I said Steam should do in an analysis work for university in august 2011. I should definitively convince myself that I actually have good ideas...
    Ideas are worthless - it's implementing ideas which matters and it's how WELL you implement them which really matters.

    EVERYONE has ideas - it amazes me that people don't realise this - there isn't a single person reading this who doesn't have a 'world changing idea' for something - a game idea - a book idea - a way of making society better and if there is - what the fuck are you doing with yourself!? :)
    Last edited by trjp; 11-09-2013 at 08:10 PM.

  11. #11
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    It must be said that his pretty much removes the only actual 'limitation' of Steam as a DRM platform

    Well - I'm sure there are still people who think buying 1 copy of a game entitles their entire family to play it at the same time (it almost never does and if a developer wants that I'm sure Steam will enable it) - but you can't please everyone!!

  12. #12
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    3DS/DS Download play is great. I miss Spawning like Starcraft have (SC2 has a similiar spawning feature, restricted by having to be in the same party online for full access to the latest expansion content in multiplayer).

    We used to have the ability to install on more than one PC with one copy. Once technology caught up to track accounts and licenses it became a missed feature that was only a feature due to the limits of technology.

  13. #13
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus somini's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Boris View Post
    It should be mutually exclusive per title, not per library.

    As I read it, when the master account plays, nothing is available to people who lend from that. It should give you access to all the other games that are not being played, IMO.
    This is pretty much the only unclear piece of information. Hopefully RPS will clarify this situation.
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  14. #14
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Kelron's Avatar
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    From the official FAQ:

    Borrowed games will be unavailable on even an authorized device when the lender’s library is currently in use on another computer.
    It also sounds like it might require the game to have been installed on the computer from an account that owns it, before it can be shared. It's not clear, but potentially that stops or makes it harder for people to share with "family members" they met online.

  15. #15
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus SirKicksalot's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Boris View Post
    It should be mutually exclusive per title, not per library.

    As I read it, when the master account plays, nothing is available to people who lend from that. It should give you access to all the other games that are not being played, IMO.
    That's too drastic. Nobody would buy games anymore.

  16. #16
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Sketch's Avatar
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    Another question that's confusing some people. When the owner of the account accesses a game, it doesn't matter what game the borrower is using, even if it's completely different to what the account owner starts to play, they're kicked off, correct?
    That's right. Only one user may play an account's games at a given time. There's a grace period if you're playing when the lender kicks you.
    From a Steam Dev
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  17. #17
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus LTK's Avatar
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    This is kinda cool but it's virtually identical to giving someone your Steam login details, the only change being... what exactly? The ability prevent the other person from changing your e-mail address or password, but not much else. Being able to lend out individual games would be spectacular, akin to borrowing a disc from a friend, but yeah, there's no way doing that won't be immediately and completely exploited. For now, this is a good first step.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Boris View Post
    It should be mutually exclusive per title, not per library.

    As I read it, when the master account plays, nothing is available to people who lend from that. It should give you access to all the other games that are not being played, IMO.
    Which Microsoft originally was offering with the Xbone. I think up to 5 devices. If you friend across the country wanted to play your copy of Halo, they could while you still could play something else.

    That is what would make this more compelling. The people who want to play the latest Dragon Age right away will buy it. Most of your buddies will be in a similar time zone and potentially on a similar work schedule. Maybe abused by Steam buddies who are across the world. But that is only one person who can actively be playing that copy. If anything it might create more fans for your game for future DLC and games. People would still buy lots of games. Maybe even more.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by LTK View Post
    This is kinda cool but it's virtually identical to giving someone your Steam login details, the only change being... what exactly? The ability prevent the other person from changing your e-mail address or password, but not much else. Being able to lend out individual games would be spectacular, akin to borrowing a disc from a friend, but yeah, there's no way doing that won't be immediately and completely exploited. For now, this is a good first step.
    How could it be exploited? Microsoft felt ok with offering this. Its a great feature that hopefully comes in the future. Its not like 1 account can share the 1 game to 50 other Steam users. Limit up to 5 devices, and limit how often authorized devices can be changed.

    So a pool of 5 friends share a pool of games...like you could in the past with PC games and can already with console/handhelds.

  20. #20
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    Yup, it seems to be the most restrictive implementation possible. That is, nothing that couldn't currently be done by giving someone your Steam login details. It just makes it more convenient (and stops you using offline mode to play indefinitely. Though I guess the master can still play offline while the borrower plays online? Or will you need to be logged in to have your library available for sharing?)

    Some interesting bits though:
    Once authorized, the lender's library of Steam games become available for others on the machine to access, download and play.
    So it's not restricting downloads.

    Steam Family Sharing allows close friends and family members to play one another's games
    It specifically allows close friends, so there won't be any of this Blizzard 'surnames must match' nonsense.

    If you decide to start playing when a friend is already playing one of your games, he/she will be given a few minutes to either purchase the game or quit playing.
    And there is the inevitable monetization angle, ie. the reason they're doing this. Really enjoying a game you're borrowing? Card details stored in Steam? Friend logs on but you can choose to continue playing with one click.

    Not criticizing that, I think it's amazing marketing, but it answers the 'why are they doing this?' question quite well.

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