Steam Stuff - What Has the Digital Distribution Giant Done Lately?


Yep. Apparently it has something to do with Steam adding some cards to games, and then retroactively awarding them to people based upon time played.

Would be nice to get some sort of notice about it though. I’ve got 2-factor authentication enabled and whatnot, but it’s still an initial reaction of “Who the hell logged into my account and played Terraria?!?”


In my case it was Saints Row 4. Yeah, there should have been some kind of notification.


I’ve seen people with excess steam bucks (heavy traders in the virtual goods market) buy games for others in trade for real cash (at a 10-15% discount off listed price).

Don’t think this scales to big money laundering though, this is on the order of low thousands at the high end I think.


I believe that, and I do wonder if it’s happening on a larger scale too. @KallDrexx suggested that people are creating fake games to give out keys and then farm for cards to sell for profit. I don’t understand who would be buying the cards for the fake games to allow them to make a profit, though… Unless it’s money laundering.

Put money into Steam, filter it through random cards to break up the trail, eventually buy keys you resell to pull the money out. Given the sheer volume of cards apparently trading on Steam, maybe that’s not too far-fetched.

Just in case anyone is interested, the average trading volume for the first 36 games for which I have cards in my inventory is 80 cards in the last 24 hours. They’re all pretty cheap, so that’s $4/card/day. Searching through the Steam marketplace shows roughly 30,000 cards with more than 100 active listings. If my 80 sales per card @ $0.05 average holds true (and it’s probably way too high), that’s $120,000/day. That’s only $43 million a year, though, so probably not actually the result of serious money laundering.


While it’s easy to set up as a dev in Steam, it’s quite harder than what you imply. Or at least it used to.


You don’t need to sell cards for the fake games. They can be broken down into gems, which can be used to craft booster packs for real games. These can be sold to real people either opened or unopened.


Don’t know if this is the right thread or not, but I was playing Xenonauts yesterday. Ended my Steam session and shut down my laptop.

Early today I opened Steam and tried to load the game but it was no longer installed.

Has anyone experienced this with a game on Steam or with this game in particular?


I just peeked, and it has happened to someone else. You might make noise on this thread (if that is not you already):


I am one and the same 😉


Happened to me with Path of Exile and Warframe. It’s a known steam issue where a library gets corrupted. A small fix in a text editor to the header of some file fixes it, but I don’t know which one from the top of my head.


I reinstalled and my save game was still there.


Yeah I’ve had that a few times before. Very annoying with large games.


Apparently they revamped their chat, now has group chats, voice chat, etc.


Yeah and it’s terrible, like pretty much every other UI revamp on sites I frequently use (youtube etc). To unfuck this abomination append -nofriendsui to the shortcut command.


The internet’s push for lower information density is awful.


The latest addition to the fake game/asset flip strategy is item trade scams. A fake game/asset flip creates marketable/tradable items. At first, they make these rather innocuous to slip through, but at some point, they edit the item details to be a near exact replica (icon, description, etc) of a valuable item from another game (TF2, DOTA, CSGO, PUBG, etc) with the only noticeable difference the one line game name in the item description.

Then it’s off to scam some people via the trade mechanism (giving slightly favorable trade offers for other valuable items)


Not sure why they don’t have a separate review process for marketable things like they do for trading cards.


They’ve added some warnings notifying that the trade contains items for an unplayed/unowned game now, so that’s resolved now.

Apparently they’re also returning scammed items in these cases.


Remember when steam sales were exciting, and fresh, and new? Remember that feeling of antici… … … … … … … pation?