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Valve has finally done it! They've overhauled Steam Family Sharing with the new Steam Families set of features now available in Beta and it fixes the most annoying issue with it.

Currently, with Steam Family Sharing, if one person is playing a game your whole library is locked. You can either boot them off, or wait. Now, that's changed. As long as you're playing different games - it's all good. Obviously if other members in your Family Group have a copy, multiple people can play the same game at the same time.

This new Steam Families replaces both Steam Family Sharing and Steam Family View, putting everything under one banner and this introduces new features too. These new additions include new parental controls so you can set proper limits now including:

  • Allow access to appropriate games.
  • Restrict access to the Steam Store, Community or Friends Chat.
  • Set playtime limits (hourly/daily).
  • View playtime reports.
  • Approve or deny requests from child accounts for additional playtime or feature access (temporary or permanent).
  • Recover a child's account if they lost their password.

Children can also request purchases for you to approve or deny!

Valve also clarified that if someone in your group got banned using your copy, you will also be banned.

See the full announcement on Steam.

It took a long time for Valve to do this, many features here people have been requesting for a long time. Glad to see it land, at least in Beta for now. It's quite likely the Steam Deck gave Valve a little extra push to do it, as it has been a source of complaints there too. But as we've seen time and time again, Valve do react to feedback and constantly improve.

Article taken from GamingOnLinux.com.
Tags: Beta, Misc, Steam, Valve
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38 comments
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pb Mar 18
Quoting: ElectricPrismI can't play a free to play game while a family member is playing some other game I bought

This was fixed some time ago.
I guess the "one person is banned, you're all banned" rule is meant to safeguard against a dozen people all sharing the same game library, but I can't imagine developers and publishers are going to be too thrilled about the possibility of this feature cutting into their sales.
scaine Mar 18
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They should just put a Spotify-like limit on family size - like (pluck a number out the air) 6. Sure, there are families bigger than 6 out there, but the kind of family that can afford 6 household members the hardware and internet connection to take advantage of this feature are a) few and far between (I suspect) and b) probably quite rich and not the target audience of this kind of sharing.

EDIT: And... I should have googled before commenting. They've already done so, and it is indeed max 6 members in a Family Group.

https://help.steampowered.com/en/faqs/view/054C-3167-DD7F-49D4


Last edited by scaine on 18 March 2024 at 11:12 pm UTC
Termy 7 years Mar 18
Wow, that sounds quite nice. Now Valve only needs to finally introduce age verification for Germany ^^
Nateman1000 Mar 18
Thank god there’s gonna be a time where I need to pass down my steam library to be little brother
Quoting: Pikolo
Quoting: ElectricPrismI really don't like companies beholden to Wallstreet Stock Investors. The companies have 2 masters and they always pick their stock holders over their customers -- infact it's legally codified that they are required to otherwise they could be sued for not squeezing every dollar and cent.

That's not really true. Officers of the company have a duty to act for the benefit of the company, and can be sued if they don't - that much is true. But that doesn't mean they're required to maximizes short term profit at the detriment of long term value - that would just be dumb.
It being dumb would not make it untrue. The reality as far as I can tell is somewhat fuzzy--no, the law probably does not specify that the benefit of the company == short term profit to the detriment of long term value. And quite a bit of the shift towards that kind of thinking is actually related to executive compensation schemes involving stock options and such, which motivate executives to juice the stock price now. But US economic thinking has for some time had a culture emphasizing short term shareholder returns, based on ideas put forward by some very influential (if wrong) economic thinkers (these thinkers, in turn, were influential because they suited the profit motives of some very rich short-term profiteers who did not want to be regulated). As a result, if a US court had to decide what the benefit of a company was, it might well operate as if these influential economic thinkers were correct.
cypherpunk Mar 19
Quoting: Mountain ManI guess the "one person is banned, you're all banned" rule is meant to safeguard against a dozen people all sharing the same game library, but I can't imagine developers and publishers are going to be too thrilled about the possibility of this feature cutting into their sales.

I think it is more of a technical reason where the licensed copy of that game is banned, not the individual user. If your family member gets that copy of the game banned, no one can use it anymore.
CatKiller Mar 19
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Quoting: Mountain ManI guess the "one person is banned, you're all banned" rule is meant to safeguard against a dozen people all sharing the same game library, but I can't imagine developers and publishers are going to be too thrilled about the possibility of this feature cutting into their sales.

That's not how it works.

The person who got themselves banned is banned. The person who owned the copy of the game (if there are multiple copies in the pool you need to say whose you are playing) also gets banned. Everyone else in the pool can keep playing.
based Mar 19
This is AWESOME

Quoting: Nateman1000Thank god there’s gonna be a time where I need to pass down my steam library to be little brother

You don't need to pass down your Steam library to be a little brother :p


Last edited by based on 19 March 2024 at 5:47 am UTC
Quoting: Mountain Manbut I can't imagine developers and publishers are going to be too thrilled about the possibility of this feature cutting into their sales.

The primal human -- using the lower brain functions is definately going to be afraid of "loosing sales".

But kick in higher brain functions & logic and get the opposite result. The more people that play your game the more The Network Effect happens and the more sales.

What's worse than people playing your game and talking about it among family? Nobody playing your game and nobody talking about it.

Lower & Higher brain functions can be a funny thing.
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