Why Steam Family Sharing sucks

Steam Announces Family Sharing

Steam Family Sharing allows close friends and family members to play one another’s games while earning their own Steam achievements and saving their own game progress to the Steam cloud. It’s all enabled by authorizing a shared computer.

This is why it sucks:

Can a friend and I share a library and both play at the same time?

No, a shared library may only be accessed by one user at a time.

If I buy Software from Steam that my wife or kids need to use then if they do I can’t play my games. Given that we are all up in the day and asleep at night I see no advantage to this ‘sharing’ in the family at all. I do however see a huge advantage in sharing my library with some guys in IRC who I chat to every day – they live across the Atlantic.

What should they have done?
Let me share the library AND let 2 computers access it at the same time but ONLY let a game be played once. I’ve bought Burnout Paradise just once as I have FEZ. Let me play one and the wife play another at the same time. That would be Family Sharing.

What this is better called is Timezone Sharing.

For games that I think more than just me will play I will continue to purchase them on GOG.

A 100 day journey


I completed this last week and meant to write about how great I found the experience and why. But I couldn’t get the words right. And then I thought that trying would mean I’d spoil things for you. So I’m not writing anything. Except to say that as I loaded it day by day I questioned my choices, I learned something about me by playing it.

And today I am starting again and this time I expect to play it for a year. One move a day.


The Cat Lady


Bought this a few days ago from the above site (you get a Desura key). Really loving every aspect from the art, the sounds, the voice acting, the story – the whole package. It is running flawlessly on this mac using Crossover too.
It’s not a game for everyone but it has a demo and if you want an engaging story it’s worth considering.

No Elite kickstarter

I’d been looking for more turn-based games and Predestination on Kickstarter was linked from somewhere. Looked good so I backed it. Progress went on, it all looked very good and to help close the goal I increased my backing to $40 in the last 2 days. It’s been successful and it’s all looking very good.

I’d vaguely played Elite some time in my youth and there it is on Kickstarter – Elite: Dangerous. At about the same time as Predestination I backed this for £25 (note that this is in real money and the other was in US$). I was fairly okay with the project but for £25 it was a punt I’d take. But then Braben changed his backing levels – and in the email that went out if you backed £90 (it is now £80) you got all future DLC included.

So backing for £80 gets you the game and more for less than others will pay. I’d be backing for £25 and yet still have to pay full price for this DLC and that means the base cost of the game and this projected DLC would be more expensive than any other game I can think of. If the DLC will be so much – and I’d not know final figures – then how crippled will the base launch game be? Would I be paying for something so basic that it was not really a game without the rest? No idea. So I cancelled my backing.

I’ll pay full price for games on console and I’ll pay full price for niche titles on PC (Commander at War, Panzer Corps are the most recent) but I’m not prepared to pay full price only for unknown prices on DLC on what is still an unplayed and unreviewed game. Elite has 11 days and some £330,000 still to go. If he doesn’t make it I wonder what he’ll blame it on – and if he does…… I’ll watch the reviews and see if I need to kick myself.

EDGE – from good to garbage

I could rarely justify the price of the magazine given it’s multi-format nature and the information I didn’t care for about industry types. But I was always interested in their scores. Games had to work hard to please this mag and pre-metacritic I used it as one of the more trusted sources when I wasn’t sure about a purchase.

This is a paid review. Ridge Racer Unbounded review – Edge Magazine. Whoever wrote that has not played the game. Whoever wrote that has never played Ridge Racer. Whoever wrote that was too busy counting the backhander while copy-pasting the text they were sent.

I recall lots of EDGE reviews where they would call a game crap when others would call it okay. They would call warm when others said Hot. But I cannot recall a review where they said Excellent and everyone else scored it less. 14 reviews and they lead the pack with that score of 9. My memory serves me correctly (for once) – their stats pages show that in 84% of their 2,033 reviews they score harsher than the average critic. In fact “On average, this publication grades 9.5 points lower than other critics.”.

Metacritic has Ridge Racer Unbounded at 75 which is where I’d expect an arcade racer to be these days. They are less about racing and more about gimmicks now. But if ever there was a signal that the company behind this game needs a high metacritic score and are willing to pay this this is that signal. If you don’t play games and don’t realise the impact Metacritic has – check this post at ars technica on what a single point cost.

As for EDGE? No point reading that site any more and their reviews are now worthless.