Weather warning: Steam’s winter sale comes storming in

Batten down the wallet hatches, stow the pounds below deck, eat the fivers – barely a month after the closing of the Autumn sale and its awards, the Winter sale has descended on Steam like a terrible maelstrom, demanding tithes and sacrifices, disappearing all who stand in its way and eating their hearts. I don’t know where this metaphor is going. The sale is either a storm or an Aztec god. Make up your own mind.

It’s running from today until January 2. We kind of already knew this was coming, thanks to a sneaky peeky tweety from PayPal earlier in the week but our forecasts could predict no more. Some eye-catching picks include Deus Ex: Mankind Divided for £13.19, Just Cause 3 for £9.99, Invisible Inc for £4.49, Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons for £1.64, and Stellaris for £16.79. I’d slap out some more suggestions but the service is currently overwhelmed, slow and unresponsive, making it hard to see or buy anything. It is probably wise to wait until that calms down before buying.

I was also going to mention that Humble Store have their own DRM free holiday sale but they’ve stopped their cheapo offers today. It looks like the internet can only handle one Aztec moneystorm at a time, and even then it barely manages that.


  1. Ghostwise says:

    The sale can’t be an Aztec god. Aztec gods come as a pre-order DLC that will only unlock in several weeks.

    Sorry, Aztecs. Sucks to be y’all.

  2. Creeping Death says:

    With a wishlist of over 70 items I’d say maybe a quarter of it is actually discounted. And of those, none more than 30%.

    I know people liked to complain about the timed flash deals, but they seemed to be where all the deep discounts actually were. I actually don’t think I’ve picked up anything from a steam sale since their removal :/

    • Banks says:

      The discounts are less aggressive in every store now and for good reason. Years before games got devaluated so quickly that It benefited no one.

      • Rince says:

        Well, It would benefit me. Sorry for being selfish.

        • eeguest says:

          Same here. And what is totally outrageous is that ols games don’t get cheaper: Like Bioshock Infinite + DLC keeps it’s price for the third year in a row.

    • Kaeoschassis says:

      Funny, mine is like 130-some games and very nearly all of them are at least slightly discounted. I should point out that in past sales I’ve found my wishlist didn’t always read accurately for the first few hours of the sale, probably due to overtaxed server shenanigans, so that might be contributing to your problem, y’never know.

      Honestly I haven’t found recent sales to be particularly disappointing, I usually get SOMETHING I’ve been really wanting at a good discount. Still, everyone’s mileage is gonna vary, I’m not gonna say you’re just outright wrong.

    • Sarfrin says:

      By way of contrast, I have a wishlist of 23, but most of them have at least a 50% discount. Good times.

      • Darth Gangrel says:

        My wishlist has 24 games and pretty much all of them have nice discounts. I also have some leftover steam wallet funds from selling trading cards to overeager fools, so I might buy 1 or 2 games that are below 2 euros.

        My wishlist acts more like a checklist of games I’d otherwise forget about, the “hmm, might be interesting and worth playing, but I’m not sure”-kind.

        I used to enjoy checking back every 8 hours to see the new flash deals, but I later realized that I enjoyed the deal hunting more than the actual games. Now I only have to check my wishlist once and can wait until the last day before buying something without missing out.

    • Chaoslord AJ says:

      Mine are 100+ most of which are early access which I don’t buy but merely track for lack of a better system. Well there’s follow but that’s not exactly useful either.

      • Sarfrin says:

        What does follow even do? I’ve never heard a thing about any game since I’ve followed it.

        • Chaoslord AJ says:

          I follow ATS and Descend:Underground and then I get messages like “event started” or “merry christmas”. It’s quiet distracting.

    • SuicideKing says:

      I dunno I’m seeing a lot of good discounts this time.

    • jonfitt says:

      I used to enjoy checking back every 12 hours to see the new flash sales over Christmas. The excitement when something you wanted went on deep discount.

      I appreciate that many felt like games were becoming devalued, but the reality is for me that I spend less in the sales and buy fewer games. Is it better that instead of $5 for a non physical product a seller gets $0? If they think that they can get more money overall from fewer purchasers then ok. But I wonder if the data backs that up?

    • geldonyetich says:

      That’s a shame, because my general rule of thumb is it’s not on sale until it’s at least 50% off.

      Even then, it seems unlikely I’m going to get it unless I feel it is good enough that I can actually find time to play it. Too many cheap games have been bought without being able to realize this.

      The flash sales were an effective hard sales tactic to break that stalemate, but I guess it is just as well they’re gone.

  3. Beernut says:

    Pff, apparently they didn’t find my “The journey is its own”-Award-suggestion for American Truck Simulator punny enough to be considered for the “We didn’t think of everything”-category.

  4. jezcentral says:

    Those awards were a right load of old cobblers weren’t they? I didn’t discover the link to the page that explained what they actually meant until a lot later. That said, cheap games, yay!

    However, I think I will be spending more money at the Origin sale, this time.

  5. Diziet Sma says:

    Just under 60 items here and I’ve got an 80% and a fair few 60%-75% discounts so I’ll definitely be picking a few things up, old and new.

    • Nauallis says:

      Sounds like you’ll be working within special circumstances, then.

      • teije says:

        Make sure you first just read the instructions and avoid any unacceptable behaviour, or you may end up with a frank exchange of views.

        • MacTheGeek says:

          It’s a bit of a grey area, but if you have a reasonable excuse you might end up with a full refund.

  6. SaintAn says:

    I bought all the Crusader Kings 2 DLC. I immediately regretted that decision. Hope the refunds go though. ; ;

  7. dangermouse76 says:

    Invisible Inc purchased….
    Invisible Inc downloaded….
    Invisible Inc started…….nice.

  8. kud13 says:

    GOG now has TRON 2.0!

    I’m kinda tempted by DXMD, but I feel I should wait for the inevitable BundleStars super-offer that’ll include the season pass.

    Besides, just last week I bought the new Age of Empires II HD DLC, so my holiday gaming is spoken for…

    • Chaoslord AJ says:

      Wait for the Director’s Cut with all the DLC, it’s not urgent to play this.

  9. Chaoslord AJ says:

    It’s good they no longer have flash sales and dailies. This way I can just look once and forget about it until after the sale.
    Also “steam awards” villains, no Sephiroth or Shodan but Farcry, lol. Kids these days.

    • dahools says:

      Sephiroth? Na, he was just misguided. You mean Professor Hojo, now he was an evil f*cking villain.

    • Jalan says:

      That two Far Cry titles made it to that category is disappointing – there really needed to be a limit on franchise entries being finalists.

  10. fish99 says:

    Picked up Human Fall Flat and ABZU, but from GMG where they were cheaper than Steam, and also grabbed Undertale from Steam.

  11. Dynamique says:

    Looking at Steam, GOG and Humble over the last weeks, it feels like there were more sale-days than regular ones…

  12. jimjim19681968 says:

    I’ve started Starbound again, seeing as there was a groovy update. the relaxing exploring is very stimulating. also I just picked up 8-bit invaders plus armies and hordes which i have heard fun things about.

  13. Rince says:

    Dammit Koei! Will kill you to make a 75% sale on the older titles!?
    In fact none of the titles that I REALLY want have a sale higher than 50%. Bad sales! Bad sales! Why you are not good!?

    • Ghostwise says:

      A lot of Japanese titles that mostly had a console career do not seem to ever dip under 50%, in my experience.