Steam Beta Rolled Out New ‘Steam Families’ Feature For Households To Share Games Up To 6 Users

Posted on April 3, 2024 by Nick Moreno

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When it comes to Valve’s Steam storefront, it is the pinnacle marketplace for PC gaming. And over time has evolved into much more with the updates that came to the platform in time. That includes elements like the Steam smartphone app which enabled QR code scan sign-in as well as remote downloading for your account.

Additionally, this went one step further with Tesla vehicles also opening to Steam. Yes, you can launch the platform in the electric vehicle and play your games anywhere you go. The most recent revolution has to be enabling Meta Quest 2, Meta Quest 3, and Meta Quest Pro to stream select SteamVR titles wirelessly to the virtual reality headsets.

In a recent announcement, Steam Beta rolled out a new feature enabling paired users to share games. Classified as ‘Steam Families’, up to six players can be assigned to a household and share a library of titles on Steam.

When you join a Steam Family, you automatically gain access to the shareable games that your family members own and they will also be able to access the shareable titles in your library. The next time you log in to Steam, this new ‘family library’ will appear in the left column as a subsection of your games list. You maintain ownership of your current titles and when you purchase a new game it will still show up in your collection.

Best of all, when you are playing a game from your family library, you will create your own saved games, earn your own Steam achievements, have access to workshop files and more. Family Sharing enables you to play games from other family members’ libraries, even if they are online playing another game. If your family library has multiple copies of a game, multiple members of the family can play that game at the same time.

“Let’s say that you are in a family with 4 members and that you own a copy of Portal 2 and a copy of Half-Life,” Valve offered as an example for how Steam Families works. “At any time, any one member can play Portal 2 and another can play Half-Life. If two of you would like to play Portal 2 at the same time, someone else in the family will need to purchase a copy of the game. After that purchase, there are two owned copies of Portal 2 across the family and any two members can play at the same time.”

The FAQ also presses on elements like offline play, cheating, and sharing. “You can play games from the Family library offline as long as that game supports Family Sharing. […] If a family member gets banned for cheating while playing your copy of a game, you (the game owner) will also be banned in that game. Other family members are not impacted. […] By joining a family, all games are automatically shared with the other members in your family. Adult accounts can use parental controls to limit which games each child in the Family can access.”

What are you most interested about the Steam Families feature?

Source: Steam

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