150 New Games Added To Our Steam Curator Page

It belongs in a museum. Or better yet, a omnipresent download serivce

Don’t know what to play next? Well, the answer’s Peggle. If you’ve already played that and are now staring at the infinite and overwhelming shelves of Steam, begging for the gods to grant you inspiration, it’s OK, we can help. After a bit of a quiet patch, we’ve just done a major update to our Steam Curator page, adding something like 150 new recommendations – including the games we liked bestest from the past few months, and everything with a Steam release from our ongoing Best [Insert Genre Here] Ever Made series.

There are 232 recommendations in total now, covering games both old and new, and that’s a figure which will keep on rising. You can be damned sure that everything recommended is a game that at least one person on the RPS staff genuinely feels warm and fuzzy about.

Currently, FPSes, strategy games, puzzle games, simulations and adventure games are particularly well-represented, but we’ve got a best RPGs feature on its way soon, with more to follow.

Yeah, we have mixed feelings about the whole Curator system and its effects on where and how games appear on Steam, but the very least we can do is use our 142 years of knowledge to help increase the chances of properly good stuff appearing. So please do give us a follow. There’ll be even more games going up soon: this is very much an ongoing curation, not a completed one.

30 Comments

  1. Shadow says:

    Excellent article image choice. Very fitting.

    • Wowbagger says:

      It looks vaguely familiar, but my old brain has forgotten.

      • Shadow says:

        It’s from the very final scene of Raiders of the Lost Ark.

        “In Washington, D.C., the Army Intelligence agents inform Jones and Brody that the Ark is someplace safe and will be studied by “top men”. The Ark is shown being permanently stored in a giant government warehouse among countless similar crates.”

    • grimdanfango says:

      They chose…
      ………wisely.

    • welverin says:

      Top men.

    • rodan32 says:

      Argh, now that theme is in my head for the rest of the night. Doo doo doo doooo! Doo doo dooooo!

  2. davidgilbert says:

    I had a feeling top men were working on this.
    And women, of course :)

  3. drakmaniso says:

    I’m not sure such a massive update was a good idea, especially if you were looking for new followers: this will probably be perceived as spam by those using the activity feed of steam.

    Also, you say you are dubious about the curator system, but you are not really playing along: in all your last updates the text is absolutely useless.

    I find that the curators that work for me are those that take the time to write one-liners that summarize how they feel about the game. It’s not so much for the games I’m interested in, but for those I wouldn’t have considered: it’s sometimes enough to get me interested.

    • AngoraFish says:

      So much update spam… And 100% agree.

      • BooleanBob says:

        So if RPS was complaining Steam’s release schedule was flooded, and demanded curators..

        Now readers are complaining that RPS’ Steam curation is flooded..

        Who curates the curators?!

      • Shadow says:

        This is actually less of a curators’ problem and more related to the fact the activity feed has absolutely minimal information filters.

        That kind of customization is long overdue: just like I don’t want to be spammed by a million curator entries, I’m not interested in being notified about every last damn screenshot any friend uploads, nor status update nor favourited mod. The feed not only needs category filters, but also volume filters (i.e. Facebook’s “see less from X”). Some friends are inevitably very spammy and there’s nothing I can do but block them or forsake the activity feed entirely, which is obviously far from acceptable.

        • Stirbelwurm says:

          Well, category filters are already present. You can specify, if you don’t want to see any screenshots, reviews or achievements, etc. This applies to all friends in your list though, but I guess this should help filter out the most annoying stuff.

          To do this, you just have to open the options at the top of the activity page.

        • Shadow says:

          Hmm. I suppose that’s a relatively new change. It’s unfortunately not too useful for me, as I’m normally interested in all those updates, but have a particularly annoying friend who keeps posting uninteresting screenshots and frequently hoards my activity feed space.

    • KillahMate says:

      Yeah, writing “RPS’s 18th best strategy game ever” is well and good, but it doesn’t really tell me anything about whether I’d like it. Though I can see from the links to reviews that you’re basically using the curation service as advertising for the RPS website, which I have mixed feelings about – on the one hand I love this website, but on the other hand I don’t like to see Steam systems abused in this way. A curation entry is supposed to be able to stand on its own, external links are merely an extra.

      • kwyjibo says:

        “RPS’s 45th best strategy game ever” reads as if you’re damning it with faint praise.

        And it also does not tempt me to click on the full review, because it comes across as listicle bullshit.

      • padger says:

        Hmm, well you obviously use the internet differently to me. When I want some new games I do tend to browse a bunch of lists, identify possibles, then read detailed cover on whatever site I trust. The curator lists are great for this, and RPS’ one is particularly rich vein. There’s at least… two… games I am going pick up from that update nudge.

    • Alec Meer says:

      Well, to my mind – honestly – our saying a game is one of the best ever made is an entirely meaningful statement. I thought it was a stronger and more definitive recommendation than a florid quote from the article, but OK, agree to disagree. However I do worry that what’s also going on is people object to the idea of leaving Steam to read something elsewhere. That they think the click to find out more is offensive even though they want this curator’s advice?

      Clearly, as much as we absolutely want to help people buy the best games, we probably wouldn’t use the system if there wasn’t at least the chance of a fringe benefit to us – i.e. people reading our stuff – otherwise we’re effectively doing free work for Valve, and even actively sabotaging our own business.

      • drakmaniso says:

        However I do worry that what’s also going on is people object to the idea of leaving Steam to read something elsewhere.

        I don’t think the curator system could contribute to that: the text is way too short to replace a review (the comment section, on the other hand, could be more threatening, as some comments are surprisingly helpful). The only thing it can do, IMO, is to spark curiosity. But for that to work, the text has to convey something specific about the game (like many of your older curations did).

        Also, it’s understandable (and probably part of the intent of the system) to want to bring traffic to RPS; but I think goes beyond that. The fact is, such short texts are much more helpful when they come from someone familiar than from complete strangers. Rather than using them as some kind of publicity, maybe you could see them as another service you provide to your readers (and steam has shown that providing useful additional services can forge loyalty).

    • Alec Meer says:

      Personally I think of Steam Curation as a repository for recommendations – a place to go when you want to find something new to play – but I guess to some it’s more like a social network, bulletins rather than a library, so I can see why it might have been an unintended nuisance for some people.

      The many, many hours I just put into it were primarily about catching up after a fallow period, but point taken and we’ll avoid quite so much bulk at once in future.

      • padger says:

        Yeah, this.

        Also good work on getting back to curation. It’s needed, and RPS’ presence in places like Steam is important.

  4. jezcentral says:

    RPS’ list is good’n’all, but a bit too generic. All the biggest lists seem to cover (quite a few of) the same games.

    I prefer to take a subject (like Sneaky Bastards) and run with a curator based on genre.

    Although I already follow RPS’s list, I’d be more interested if they straight-out had an Indie list, and left, say, the RTS games to a more specialist curator.

    You are still allowed to have XCOM on the list, though. :)

    • Alec Meer says:

      In an ideal world we’d have different genre/theme lists, but the realist in me says it’s a hell of a lot more work for something very few people would end up using. There are the genre filters on the page itself, at least.

  5. jrodman says:

    I really appreciate the idea of curation, and I find the voice of RPS very informative in my navigating the gaming waters, but the curation system doesn’t really work for me.

    I mean Peggle. This is my personal UnGame. I mean I don’t mean that’s not a valid game or “not really a game” or whatever, but it just doesn’t work for me. I feel like I have no influence on anything and that therefore it’s a big waste of time.

    But there it is, as the first RPS recommendation!

    I need a better recommendation system. Amazon used to have a decent one if I fed it scads of data about how i rated verious games, but somehow they’ve tweaked it a bunch and made it work more poorly. I know about the algorithmic difficulties of associative algorithms, but with a huge number of datapoints it’s possible to do a half-assed job. Better than all the current systems Steam has, for sure.

    • Hedgeclipper says:

      I find Steam’s recommendations generally awful which is absurd when you think of all the data they have about games you like, follow, buy, and how long you play them and the relationships they could build between those points and other people.

      • jrodman says:

        That data doesn’t work for me anyway. The main game I ‘play” on steam is DOTA2, which involves watching pro game replays and never playing it myself. I tend to just leave it running in the background because my ineternet connection is on the slower side.

        Thus all I get as recommendations are other mobas and similar games.

        Meanwhile, the games I actually play are typically for computers that shipped in the 1980s.

        • Hedgeclipper says:

          It doesn’t get better if they’ve got more data to work with – glancing down the page its recommending for me “Indie Games due to your recent playtime in other Indie games: Kerbal Space Program and Binding of Issac” I’m not sure which Indie game triggered the recommendation but anything that thinks there’s a big overlap between Binding of Issac and Kerbal needs some work….

          • jrodman says:

            Yeah, fair enough, it’s not just mobas I get recommended, but anything that’s Free to Play.

  6. bill says:

    I actually checked the RPS curator’s page during the steam sale when I was looking for ideas, but at that point the list was quite small and pretty much all stuff I already had / knew about.

    So i think this is a good thing. I do think that a pull quote from the article would be more useful than just “RPS’s xxth best game ever”, and more intriguing.

    I also hope you’ll keep it updated by adding games as you review/post about them, rather than just in big batches.

  7. melnificent says:

    Like the Skiary it was merely sleeping before pouncing on an unsuspecting population. I suddenly have hope for other incomplete diaries.

    Did you have to kill the dog Alec?
    What happened with Spiders, spells and string?
    How did it go wrong when Adam Smith broke history?

    But mostly, I hope that one day the smurf of terraria will be allowed to live free once more. Hunting for Smurfberries in a hostile world.