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Valve makes paid 'Advanced Access' a clear feature on Steam now

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With more and more AAA publishers putting up special editions of games you can pay extra for, to play a few days before the main release, Valve has formally made "Advanced Access" a thing on Steam.

You know the drill, you've seen it right? "Buy the Deluxe Edition or the Special Edition, and you get to play 3 days before everyone else!" something to that effect anyway. Publishers have been using all sorts of naming and wording for it — until now. On top of Valve adjusting the refund rules recently, this whole Advanced Access thing is now, well — an actual thing on Steam.

Noticed by SteamDB creator Pavel Djundik on TopSpin 2K25 you'll see this for example:

Seems like Valve did a bit of a woops there though. The Learn more link actually goes to the Early Access info page instead of the new Advanced Access page. I'm sure they'll fix that soon though.

At least according to the Advanced Access page, it seems the feature is open to any developer to do this. As Valve say "Games by default will not include an Advanced Access pre-purchase option. This will be setup at the discretion of the developer/publisher creating and selling their products.". So it's not reserved for AAA.

With this getting promoted to be a proper official Steam feature, it's no surprise then to see them going over some of their rules like refunds to ensure people aren't gaming it by playing as much as possible before "release" (what does release even really mean now?) to refund it.

How do you feel about Advanced Access?

Article taken from GamingOnLinux.com.
Tags: Misc, Steam, Valve
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About the author -
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I am the owner of GamingOnLinux. After discovering Linux back in the days of Mandrake in 2003, I constantly came back to check on the progress of Linux until Ubuntu appeared on the scene and it helped me to really love it. You can reach me easily by emailing GamingOnLinux directly. Find me on Mastodon.
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35 comments
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Quoting: JarmerKind of reminds me a lot about all the app-based sports gambling right now which is a pandemic in my mind.
At least app-based sports gambling makes more sense than app-based actual gambling, which there is plenty of as well. I mean, with sports gambling at least you know for sure whether your bet should be paying off. With online gambling-gambling, you win . . . when the people who made the app tell you you win? Um, sure, sounds legit. I cannot fathom why anyone anywhere is enough of a sucker to do this.
kokoko3k Apr 24
"How do you feel about Advanced Access?"
Can't care less, but if someone wants to pay for it... why not?
Ehvis Apr 24
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The one thing I like about this is that people that got FOMOed into spending money on "advanced access" can leave a review immediately. So now lots more people can see that the game is crap even before release!
Quoting: finaldestI am done with this crap.

I am fed up of this complete utter greed. First we lost physical releases along with publishers destroying games preservation. Now they want even more money by charging £100+ for a broken PC game and now I am required to give yet more money to play the game on release day (AKA On time)

I am done. After 20 years I am now going back to the high seas.
Visual novels are still very much physical. Tens of thousands of them are only available physically.

Big pain to ship them internationally and sometimes they're encumbered by DRM, but they are physical...I wonder if these Japanese games will ever make the shift to digital-only.
A lot of talk about the high seas . . . It occurs to me that if you were actually on the high seas, in international waters, with a satellite internet connection . . . piracy would be legal.
Jarmer Apr 24
Quoting: OktorasPatient gamer is a thing...

More and more so all the time. Currently I'm patiently waiting on a bunch of stuff:

- Warhammer Rogue Trader to fix insane balance issues / late game acts
- Starfield to make the bigger changes they announce a while back
- Dragons Dogma 2 to not try to shit itself to death constantly performance wise
- there are others, these are just my top 3
kerossin Apr 24
Doesn't really change anything, publishers have already been doing this for a long time.

I just don't get why would anyone pay to beta test a game. It's like going to work but instead of getting paid you pay to work.
I really don't mind if people want to play unfinished games ahead of others. What I really don't like (and will never support) is pre-ordering games which come with exclusive content only available before the release, but that's a story for another topic.
Kirby Apr 24
the only thing i like about that is seeing that colour scheme back
Phlebiac Apr 25
Quoting: MasterSleortI say let free market forces dictate whether it is a feature that will stay or not. If people are getting burnt or don't feel the value is there, publishers will be hesitant to use the feature. After all it's also a way to get advanced negative reviews.

This is true - "advanced access" could result in negative reviews that destroy "release day" sales. Hopefully that's enough incentive for greedy publishers to be cautious about milking this too heavily.
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