Steam Announces Family Sharing Plan

Valve does what Microsoft won't. Share your Steam games with up to 10 friends!

In a big middle finger to Microsoft, Steam has recently announced the new feature added to its digital gaming service - the family sharing plan. You can "share" games on the cloud to 10 designated friends. They can play the games whenever you want, as long as you aren't already playing them. The downside, of course, is that you will not be able to share DLC, which belongs to the original owner of the game.

However, the good outweighs the bad. Sharing your games with friends is a great way to try out games you are unsure about before you spend money on them. Also, it's a good way for indie games to get good exposure and to boost sales.

Microsoft seems to be the originator of the idea. When the XBox One was announced this May, the only decent feature of the console was the family sharing plan. Because of wide public dissent of the majority of XBox One features, however, some good and bad features were nixed from the console. Perhaps this sparked Valve's interest so the plan could be implemented on Steam.

The sharing plan is currently in closed beta, but will be available to all Steam members soon.

Published Sep. 16th 2013
View Comments
  • Andrew Wynans
    Featured Contributor
    I wonder whether this feature will be available for all games, or if there is a select group included. Steam has a lot of clout, but it seems odd to me that a major publisher with highly anticipated titles would give gamers a way to buy one copy per ten people... But then again, maybe those publishers anticipate that the titles will sell well anyway because everyone will want to play the game as soon as it is released...

    All that to say, I'm curious to see the family plans in action...
  • Amy White
    Former Editor in Chief
    Welcome to GameSkinny! Love your first two articles, add some header images and we can promote them out of the Lobby for all of GameSkinny to enjoy.

    You've got a crisp but laid back writing style, looking forward to seeing more from you, r2d2cupcake.

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