Get Ready to Share Games on Steam

Remember that really great feature the Xbox One was supposed to have? I’m not talking about that always-online nonsense, silly. The family sharing plan. You know, the one that let you share your games with a select group of people (of your choosing) for free. You don’t remember? No worries, Steam was paying close attention to those Microsoft announcements.

According to a recent press release by Valve, the Steam Family Sharing plan will allow authorized “buddies” to borrow any games from one another’s Steam library, just like in the days of the disc. Not just one game, either. The entire game library will be made available to them, and they’ll be free to download and play the games with their own achievements and save files. According to Anna Sweet of Valve, the “Family Sharing was created in direct response to these user requests.”

The limits on the sharing plan are quite similar to the Xbox One’s cancelled feature as well; only ten friends’ devices can be authorized to share with and simultaneous usage of an account’s library is not allowed. If two people attempt to play the same game, the borrower will receive a message warning him/her to either purchase the game or quit. Valve warns that some games will not work with this system, such as games with outside subscriptions or keys. Those interested in additional information are encouraged to check out the official Steam Family Sharing website. Beta signups are also open.