Buying options for adventure games

Posted by: Reenie

Buying options for adventure games - 06/19/17 07:07 PM

Please excuse me if this topic has been talked to death already, and I've missed the conversations. I prefer to purchase/download my games to my computer and play them DRM-free. I see lots of games available that way at GOG, but mostly nostalgia games and last year's best sellers, not too many of the newly-issued games. Has it come to pass that DRM play is the norm now for new games? I missing a site where new games can be purchased outright, or even on a disk (gasp!) rather than by download?
Posted by: Jenny100

Re: Buying options for adventure games - 06/19/17 10:10 PM

Originally Posted By: Reenie
I prefer to purchase/download my games to my computer and play them DRM-free. I see lots of games available that way at GOG, but mostly nostalgia games and last year's best sellers, not too many of the newly-issued games. Has it come to pass that DRM play is the norm now for new games? I missing a site where new games can be purchased outright, or even on a disk (gasp!) rather than by download?

I don't know of one, unless you include sites that distribute free games.

Besides GOG, fireflowergames.com is another DRM-free website.
Though not as large as GOG, FireflowerGames has a few games that GOG does not (Perils of Man, Tales of Cosmos, etc).
Not that GOG is anywhere near as large as Steam.

Steam practically has a monopoly, and it's not a good thing.
See the Polygon article ***Valve is not your friend...***

As for new games on disc, if you see a new game that claims to be on DVD, you still have to check before purchase that the disc actually contains the game and not just a Steam installer.
Posted by: Reenie

Re: Buying options for adventure games - 06/19/17 10:23 PM

Yeah, I tried Steam, but I really don't want to use it anymore. I will check out the others. Thanks.
Posted by: flotsam

Re: Buying options for adventure games - 06/20/17 03:14 AM

What an amazing read Jenny
Off to read the legal decisions.
Posted by: Mad

Re: Buying options for adventure games - 06/20/17 04:43 AM

Yes. Thank you so much for that, Jenny100. Very informative !! thumbsup

"Steam’s near monopoly has always been happily supported by players and even the press."

That sweeping statement is one bit I would highlight though because I am a player and it has certainly never applied to me !!!! devil
Posted by: Reenie

Re: Buying options for adventure games - 06/20/17 12:42 PM

So true, Mad. I wonder who wrote the article?
Posted by: BrownEyedTigre

Re: Buying options for adventure games - 06/20/17 01:29 PM

There is something significant missing from that Steam article. The view of the developers who have literally been kept alive by the income that Steam offers them. It is the one place they can release that they get paid well, fairly and on time. I have a significant number of developer friends from all over the world and we chat daily, and Steam is the #1 choice for them to be guaranteed a chance to make a living. There are many sides to this story, and it is obviously written by a steam hater gathering data to attack them. Bottom line is, you can be thankful that Steam exists because without, there would be a lot less games available.
Posted by: Reenie

Re: Buying options for adventure games - 06/20/17 01:40 PM

Another good comment. It always helps to have multiple points of view expressed!
Posted by: Draclvr

Re: Buying options for adventure games - 06/20/17 02:21 PM

I don't want to stray too far off track here, but I want to support Anna's post. I've been beta testing several games over the last year or so and this is exactly what the game developers are saying to me. Each one of these games - four of them, if I remember correctly - was released on Steam because Steam is a reliable venue for the developers.

Love or hate Steam, I will quote Anna,
Quote:
Bottom line is, you can be thankful that Steam exists because without, there would be a lot less games available.
Posted by: Ewil02

Re: Buying options for adventure games - 06/20/17 05:15 PM


I'd also like to support what Anna has stated. I'm only a player but I remember not too long ago that people were reporting that PC gaming was dead. Developers were complaining of piracy and poor revenue. Now there are a lot of independent developers who are fighting to get their games "greenlit". I feel that Steam has helped gaming in this way, but yes, they are occasionally annoying. Lately the client seems to be always updating. Game updates can also be a pain, but it's great that the developers can take care of bugs and other game issues quickly.
Posted by: BrownEyedTigre

Re: Buying options for adventure games - 06/20/17 05:27 PM

THey eliminated Greenlight program as well as of late. YOu can now publish on demand for 100 dollars which is refunded after $1000 in sales. Sounds dang reasonable to me, in fact all but one developer I know thought the fee was too low and were hoping to pay more to weed out garbage.
Posted by: Mad

Re: Buying options for adventure games - 06/21/17 02:45 AM

Well re. this thread .. "Buying options for adventure games" .. My recommendation would be "GOG".

I am pleased for those who like and are satisfied with using Steam but my personal experience of Steam is BAD.

I have been a GOG customer since the site was created and in all the years following have regularly bought games from them with confidence and ease.

Using GOG I don't have to download anything other than the game I wish to buy.

I can download a game just by using my browser.

The game will be DRM Free from the outset. I won't have to mess about transferring files to external drives or other computers or anything else of that ilk to make it so.

And if I have even the slightest problem, I know GOG will respond very quickly and get it sorted.

And that just about sums up what I look for when buying and downloading a game thumbsup thumbsup thumbsup
Posted by: Draclvr

Re: Buying options for adventure games - 06/21/17 10:01 AM

I agree with Mad - I much prefer GOG. Well, with the exception of the comment about them responding quickly... They take a minimum of 4 days and even tell you it will be several days now. The only complaint I have about Steam is the same - they take forever to respond. I have dozens of games from both places and don't have any complaints - other than slow response times - about either of them.

They are different in that GOG sells existing games which they have acquired the rights to and then remove any DRM from them and tweak them to play on modern computers. They are not an outlet for game developers to release their games like Steam is. They release a few new titles, but they are few and far between.

I think we gamers are very lucky to have both of them with so many gaming choices.
Posted by: oldmariner

Re: Buying options for adventure games - 06/21/17 03:29 PM

Considering these two quotes

"The item re-sales are in full swing today, but that promised share of the profits for creators is still undelivered and Valve refuses to answer questions about where their money is. We emailed Valve for a comment on this issue before publishing the story, and have yet to hear back. After all, if you don't say anything, you can't tell a lie to the internet, right?"

"A company which will spend what has to be millions on legal fees to avoid having to pay you $15 in refunds, but which isn't “evil.” A company which exploits, underpays, deceives, obfuscates and refuses to cooperate at nearly every turn, but would never be caught dead doing “evil.”

It appears Steam is not only the same as the publishers that failed to pay developers they managed to refine the producer's fraud to an art form.

But that is how it works when total control of new games is in the hands of a single entity.
Posted by: BrownEyedTigre

Re: Buying options for adventure games - 06/21/17 05:44 PM

Originally Posted By: oldmariner


It appears Steam is not only the same as the publishers that failed to pay developers they managed to refine the producer's fraud to an art form.


They pay the developers very well. They are not remotely like the publishers that never paid for the games and caused developers to close doors. If you don't know first hand, don't accuse. This is a biased story. There are many many more success stories about Steam than there are failures.

We have so many anti-steam threads it's like listening to politics all over again. Can we just agree that everyone can make their own decision and if you don't want to download from there, it is your choice. Really. This is getting weary.
Posted by: Draclvr

Re: Buying options for adventure games - 06/21/17 07:03 PM

Going to pop in here again and then hopefully, the subject will fade away - again. As Anna says, this is a very biased article and presents only ONE side and is very biased. You can find articles that read like Steam is akin to the second coming. I read a lot of technical articles and follow and participate in several technical forums. My practice is to throw out the information that is completely biased on BOTH sides of the spectrum and try to read more balanced views. I then reconcile them with my own experiences and my experiences with game developers themselves. I know a good handful, but nothing like the contacts Anna has. They all have nothing but good things to say about Steam.

Why can't we just be grateful that we have more choices for games and use the methods and places that work for each of us? The rest is all just noise...
Posted by: oldbroad

Re: Buying options for adventure games - 06/21/17 08:13 PM

Amen.
Posted by: CaptainD

Re: Buying options for adventure games - 06/22/17 04:43 AM

Don't forget Itch.io, GameJolt (which has now started selling games as well as hosting free ones) and Humble Store have plenty of adventure games on them.
Posted by: Mad

Re: Buying options for adventure games - 06/22/17 05:56 AM

Originally Posted By: Draclvr

I think we gamers are very lucky to have both of them with so many gaming choices.


I agree with having choices yes
Posted by: chrissie

Re: Buying options for adventure games - 06/23/17 10:23 AM

Unfortunately as much as I'd like to buy DRM free games from sites like GOG newer games only seem to be available on Steam. Touchwood, I haven't had a bad experience so far & have quite a collection of games from them (not as many as from GOG) but it does annoy me that I have to be connected to the 'Steam Client' to play them. mad
Posted by: Draclvr

Re: Buying options for adventure games - 06/23/17 11:14 AM

But you DON'T have to be connected to the Steam client to play many of their games. Most games have an option to choose the "off-line" mode. Once you set it in the Steam client, you no longer need it to play. Of course, if there are any updates to the game, you won't get them.
Posted by: chrissie

Re: Buying options for adventure games - 06/23/17 11:57 AM

Thanks Draclvr - I'm glad I thought to post as I never realised that! smile
Posted by: Jenny100

Re: Buying options for adventure games - 06/23/17 03:48 PM

Claiming the author of the article is "biased" doesn't address his concerns. Of course he's biased, but so is everyone else who has an opinion. He talked about problems I hadn't heard of before (since I'm not a content creator). He's also not the only one who's raised the question about Steam's virtual monopoly on games being bad for gaming in general. You can find more articles on the subject with a web search. Monopolies are never a good thing, and everyone should be paid as contracted, not just some.

Here's an article by John Walker that outlines some of the problems developers face --> ***Link***. This kind of thing is probably more of a problem for first time developers.
Originally Posted By: JohnWalker
A game can be trashed by reviews before it has even been released, leaving a permanent mark on its record.

You'd think Steam could at least prevent something obvious like that. Be sure to read some of the comments to the article to see different points of view.


The original topic of this thread was where to buy new, DRM-free adventure games other than GOG. CaptainD mentioned itch.io and GameJolt, and Fireflower is back up again. But there is still the problem that nearly all "new" games (and many older ones) are never made available anywhere other than Steam.

This isn't choice.

Of course there is always the "choice" of not buying anything.
Is that what people want?
I think it's what's happening.

Has it really gone unnoticed that adventure game discussion forums seem to have almost dried up. Even AdventureGamers, which seems to be the most active English-speaking forum, doesn't get as much discussion as it used to. Gameboomers Discussion is mostly announcement posts and thank-you's.

So why is this? We used to have some good multi-page discussions about games people were playing, and not just complaints like with Syberia 3. Are the games most members want not being made anymore? Is there too much emphasis on dexterity now? Too much "consolitis" with gamepad-centric controls inappropriate for an adventure game? Did the lack of *real* boxed versions put people off the hobby? Is it due to lack of variety in subject matter? (something other than post-apocalyptic, sci-fi, survival horror, or cartoon comedy) Why is it that when we have any kind of "what are you playing" thread at Gameboomers that most people are playing or replaying older games? (I noticed this wasn't true for the Gameboomers' "Darkside" forum, which suggests the problem may have to do with dexterity requirements or poor/inappropriate controls in adventure games).

Whatever the reason or reasons, I think lack of game availability contributes, and eventually people just give up looking for new games and find a new hobby -- and stop posting in adventure game forums.

It seems clear to me that something is wrong, probably more than one thing.
But monopolies don't help.
Posted by: BrownEyedTigre

Re: Buying options for adventure games - 06/23/17 03:59 PM

Originally Posted By: Jenny100


Has it really gone unnoticed that adventure game discussion forums seem to have almost dried up. Even AdventureGamers, which seems to be the most active English-speaking forum, doesn't get as much discussion as it used to. Gameboomers Discussion is mostly announcement posts and thank-you's.



The discussions are alive and well, just not on forums. I am a member of many adventure game groups on FaceBook and there are plenty of lively discussions. Reddit is also full of them. Social Media is the new way of communication. The discussions haven't stopped, they just moved.
Posted by: Jenny100

Re: Buying options for adventure games - 06/23/17 04:42 PM

I expect most of those Facebook members are younger gamers.
Not everyone believes in "social" media.

Do you really think everyone who used to post here went over to social media? Gameboomers had older members, most of whom won't be so quick to jump on what's pushed as the latest fad.

People used to come here because it was the only forum where they felt "safe" to ask things without being ridiculed. Why would they suddenly throw that out and go over to Facebook?

The actual number of gamers may be about the same, but I think the older members just leave gaming behind. They aren't around any more to say "these are the reasons I left." It's a waste of their time.
Posted by: BrownEyedTigre

Re: Buying options for adventure games - 06/23/17 04:59 PM

You'd be surprised at the older members that are now strictly on FB. I still chat with at least 70 or more people that used to post here. They exclusively do FB now. They like it. Most of them still "look" here and get news, but they post on FB. Social Media is huge. THere is a whole world out there. Many groups are closed groups, if you don't behave you can get blocked just like a forum. You also can't see what many of them say unless you join. Just because things are on FB doesn't make it public.

Truth is, times change and you have to change with them if you want to stay informed. I would never be able to do my PR work or stay in touch with many developers if not for social media.
Posted by: Jenny100

Re: Buying options for adventure games - 06/23/17 07:03 PM

I am sorry to hear that.
Clearly there is a problem, though it may not be the one I originally thought.

People are made to think their private information is "safe" on Facebook, but Facebook's record is actually poor.

One of my former classmates was a showoff and claimed to be able to break into any Facebook account within two minutes. With the students who took him up on his boast, his time was less than 20 seconds. This was late last year, and the problem wasn't that the passwords were being used elsewhere or were weak passwords. There was some flaw in the Facebook setup that he knew how to exploit.

I wouldn't trust FaceBook to keep an account safe, and they're also a huge target for identity thieves.
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/money/consume...book-and-other/
Posted by: RichAlexis

Re: Buying options for adventure games - 06/23/17 07:56 PM

Originally Posted By: BrownEyedTigre
You'd be surprised at the older members that are now strictly on FB. I still chat with at least 70 or more people that used to post here. They exclusively do FB now. (...)
Truth is, times change and you have to change with them if you want to stay informed. I would never be able to do my PR work or stay in touch with many developers if not for social media.
Ana, I can see your point and I believe you're right, but I really don't like the situation.

I used to be on a number of dedicated forums, like the Internet Movie Database, a few news sites, and other ones on computers, music, TV etc. There is far less activity now, and actually most of these have closed down, like IMDB, because of decreasing use as I said, the falling level of discussion (far too much abuse and spam), and the reluctance of those sites to spend time and money on moderation.

The reason I liked them and still do, is that they are devoted to one subject, and isn't one humongous database like FB that registers and exploits every single family and other social relationship you have, all your actions, interests, hobbies, jobs, convictions, purchases etc. Even if you're not that active on FB (plus Twitter, Instagram etc.), you can count on your actions, likeness and ideas getting shared 'passively' by others, and I really believe this is a potentially a very dangerous and therefore undesirable situation, whatever precautions you take, and however carefully you create and shield your groups.

Because large groups of people no longer want to pay for services, media or information (I'm generalizing here, but it's definitely a race to the bottom, and with 3D printers you even enter the physical domain), you get a situation where every bit of data needs to be harvested, integrated and exploited to the hilt by the companies that provide them, and this is why I still rely on email, phone calls, dedicated forums, moderated comment sections, feedback forms and the like, even if fewer and fewer people I know do so ....

Of course, i realize the irony of the fact that the dedicated forums I am speaking of, like this one, were/are free too, so I'm guilty of this trend as well, like all of us are I think, up to a point.

Best,

Rich
Posted by: Reenie

Re: Buying options for adventure games - 06/23/17 08:09 PM

Wow, this thread got really interesting while I had my head turned. Jenny, I appreciate your perspective since you are not only a member here but also a Moderator. I hope it is not true that people have drifted away from gamer conversation groups in favor of FB. I use FB to keep in touch with friends in many foreign countries, but I don't play games through that site. Also, I don't use my real name, real birth date, etc., nor do I list the city I was born in or now reside in. Basically, I give them barest information possible to still register, and whatever I do have to give is an alias. I fully expect at some point that my account will be hacked, and I hope by staying anonymous to hamper any attempt to steal my identity.

I am one of the "older 'Boomers," I suppose. I think I joined GameBoomers in 2000, but don't remember exactly. I just turned 70 this year. I have been playing computer games since the first simple ones were issued. Nothing ever turned me away until they began to force the RPG and action elements on us in the last few years. It started with just a few things here and there (Remember when the last KQ games turned RPG?). This trend evolved and increased to where you almost can't find an adventure game now that doesn't have timed sequences or the need to fight or shoot, and at the same time, there is some evil presence tracking you, and to add to this, there has been an increase in gratuitous and graphic gore. There now is more emphasis on this stuff than I look for in an adventure game.

In an RPG game, I expect to be rushed, to have to duel, to be bushwhacked, to be sucker-punched. I've played a few, and they have their appeal as well. But in an adventure game, I don't want this. I want to take my time, explore, help people, solve intricate puzzles, and maybe learn a little about some other place or culture. Early games, like Myst, Zork, KQ and the rest were what I cut my gaming teeth on, and I loved them. Through the decades since, I don't think I've missed many adventure games, until they started to turn so "dark" that it was a grim task to play one. As far as the jumping/fighting/shooting thing being so big in adventure games now, it means that most games don't appeal to me anymore. I still remember how I looked forward to Dreamfall for a year, and bought it, only to find I could not play 15 minutes of it without being overcome with motion-triggered nausea, nor could I get through the tutorial on how to jump and fight and kick.

I get it that there probably are more players who like to be scared, rushed, threatened, and made to run through rivers of blood. I get it that players like me are in the minority, and that most of the money and game designing goes to satisfy the Xbox Boys and others like them. So, yeah, maybe the gaming industry has turned its back on slow-paced old fogies like me. I can't change that. There aren't enough like me. So, like others, I replay old favorites that have been reformatted to run on Win10 (hence looking for other sites than Steam who might sell them). I also play casual games more than I did 10 years ago. And I wait, and wait, and wait for the occasional gem like Lost Crown or Oak Island to come along. I just think it is a shame that there wasn't room enough, or it wasn't profitable enough, in the game industry to keep basic adventure games thriving.
Posted by: Draclvr

Re: Buying options for adventure games - 06/23/17 11:42 PM

Reenie, good post. This post definitely took a turn for the worse, in my opinion anyway. I have always failed to understand why the mere mention of the word "Steam" generates such negativity and insistence that they are ALL bad. There is plenty of negativity that they deserve, but they are also one of the reasons we gamers have more choices than we would have without them. I have no doubt there are as many horror stories from developers as there are positive ones such as the developers I've dealt with.

Bottom line is use them or don't. I fail to see the problem with those of us who have no issues with Steam or GOG. If you are one of the many who loathe Steam for good reasons, fine. If you're one who doesn't like me, fine. Sheesh...

As many of you know I am also an administrator at Mystery Manor. We have been around since 2002 and are a teeny tiny little corner of the gaming universe which has become teenier and tinier with each passing year. Guess where many, many of our members are now posting... Facebook. We are all older - I will be 70 this year and most everyone else is in the 50 - 70 year old range. I'm part of a private FB group of old friends from the good old days of the Dreamcatcher forums. We are not stupid. We know nothing is safe or sacred on Facebook, but that doesn't mean we don't have a rich and interesting presence there. I also follow some great Reddit gaming discussions. And just like using Steam and enjoying their content, if you don't like or believe in social media, don't use it. I do and will continue to do so even though I'm old. Personally, I fail to see that is a problem.
Posted by: BrownEyedTigre

Re: Buying options for adventure games - 06/23/17 11:59 PM

Amen, Draclvr. Just like anywhere you go on the internet, don't put anything out there you would be embarrassed if anyone found out. I happen to love FaceBook, Twitter and GameBoomers. I've met the most incredible people from all corners of the world, just like I did at GameBoomers. Many people just use Smart Phones now also and these social media accounts are an easy app to use on the go. I love GameBoomers, but that doesn't mean you can't talk in other places, especially if that is where the discussions headed off to.
Posted by: Draclvr

Re: Buying options for adventure games - 06/24/17 12:35 AM

That's my favorite part of Gameboomers, Mystery Manor, Facebook etc. I've met people from all over the world and have friends from the northern coast of Scotland to South Africa to the UK to the US and beyond. I value several of these on-line friendships in equal measure as my personal local friendships. I've recently lost a dearly loved fellow gamer of 92 years old. We used Facebook and Mystery Manor and email to develop a relationship that along with another fellow gamer was closer than her own family.

She used Steam, GOG and Big Fish for her games. We all have choices and we all make our own decisions. I still miss her and our gaming discussions where ever they occurred.
Posted by: BrownEyedTigre

Re: Buying options for adventure games - 06/24/17 08:15 AM

Sorry to hear that you lost your friend and fellow gamer, Drac. I have a number of them that I would have a large hole in my life if they were gone.

Ana wave
Posted by: chrissie

Re: Buying options for adventure games - 06/24/17 08:16 AM

Originally Posted By: BrownEyedTigre
Originally Posted By: Jenny100

Has it really gone unnoticed that adventure game discussion forums seem to have almost dried up. Even AdventureGamers, which seems to be the most active English-speaking forum, doesn't get as much discussion as it used to. Gameboomers Discussion is mostly announcement posts and thank-you's.

The discussions are alive and well, just not on forums. I am a member of many adventure game groups on FaceBook and there are plenty of lively discussions. Reddit is also full of them. Social Media is the new way of communication. The discussions haven't stopped, they just moved.

I think that’s a real shame as in my mind discussions about adventure games belong on an adventure game site which is one of the reasons I’ve gradually (but not deliberately) drifted away from the forums here.
I deactivated my FB account for the second time about 2 years ago due to personal issues with it. I tried tapping in a few adventure game titles into Reddit but it seems there’s only any lively discussion there about certain games e.g. The Witness.

Originally Posted By: Jenny100
......
Here's an article by John Walker that outlines some of the problems developers face --> ***Link***. .......
.........But there is still the problem that nearly all "new" games (and many older ones) are never made available anywhere other than Steam.

This isn't choice.

Of course there is always the "choice" of not buying anything.
Is that what people want?
I think it's what's happening.

To get slightly back on topic having only Steam to buy new games from is obviously not presenting a choice of vendors but on the other hand there are more games available & apart from prominent new releases I’m finding games cheaper & cheaper. I am though aware of players that won't entertain buying a game from Steam.
The John Walker article in RPS was interesting but again in my mind highlights the need for sites such as this to sort out the riff from the raff as there’s still a lot of very good games being made but perhaps being lost amongst the ever expanding boundaries of what constitutes an adventure game!
Although I rarely post here I do lurk from time-to–time as I still love GameBoomers & find it to be a great resource for info about new games! + also TEXT walkthroughs!
Posted by: Reenie

Re: Buying options for adventure games - 06/24/17 11:47 AM

I feel the same way that others do about GameBoomers. I've met some great people here over the years, and some of us even arranged to have lunch when we've turned out to be "nearby" each other (San Francisco). But mainly, I come here to get background and reviews on games that are in the works or have been issued, as well as help with a tricky part of a game, and "glitch" advice back in the day when a lot of games came out without adequate beta testing or compatibility with all systems (remember those days? You almost had to write and run a SetUp routine for each game). And I do appreciate the WTs that people post or the links to WTs on the internet. Everyone needs a nudge now and then.

And once I came to GB, I never went back to any other gamer sites because this one is "civilized." The gaming world is dominated by shooter games, and those seem to attract or to bring out the aggressive side in many people, with the result that too many sites are/were tarnished by ranters, snarky remarks and abusive conversations. Not here at GB.

Even now, when games are plug-and-play for the most part, I still don't buy a standard adventure game anymore prior to reading thorough review(s) of it first, usually here. And I periodically check out Mixed Bag, just to see what folks are up to in the world.
Posted by: RichAlexis

Re: Buying options for adventure games - 06/24/17 06:21 PM

Jenny, a somewhat belated thank you for the very interesting and provocative critical article on Steam! Until recently, I was only aware of Steam and others as game download sites, and never realised this so often involves continuous online tracking and modifications, structural problems with refunds, lack of real ownership etc. That is, if I fully get the gist of the article.

If I want to rent something for some time, or start a long-term subscription, that's fine, but if I want to buy something, I really want to own it, use it as I please with as few strings attached as possible, and not be subjected to continuous monitoring and being barred from using it, if the company chooses to discontinue support or pull out of some deal with a creator. It's the same with a lot of streaming or reliance on online content. Users often don't realize you're being kept at the mercy of the suppliers, and the data you think you can avail yourself of can change or vanish in an instant.

It's nice to have options to choose from. The problem is, that if one supplier or method of supply becomes too dominant, even invasive, both creators and users can suffer from the constraints they impose.

Best,

Rich

P.S. This is just an opinion on the general trend away from one-off product supply to continuous supplier dependency and lack of ownership. It's not meant to debunk Steam or those who use it.
Posted by: Jenny100

Re: Buying options for adventure games - 06/25/17 06:39 PM

Originally Posted By: Reenie
But mainly, I come here to get background and reviews on games that are in the works or have been issued, as well as help with a tricky part of a game, and "glitch" advice back in the day when a lot of games came out without adequate beta testing or compatibility with all systems (remember those days? You almost had to write and run a SetUp routine for each game).

Are you talking about Inferno? Inferno used to write Setups for playing older Windows 95/98 games on XP. Her old website is gone, but you can still find much of it on the Web Archive ***here***. She tested and played a lot of older adventure games on her XP computer, with some help from other members, but most of the games she did herself. There are other websites with tips on getting older games running, but it was nice to have one that was mainly devoted to adventure games.

Originally Posted By: RichAlexis
Jenny, a somewhat belated thank you for the very interesting and provocative critical article on Steam!

You're welcome. I'm glad you found it interesting.

Originally Posted By: chrissie
The John Walker article in RPS was interesting but again in my mind highlights the need for sites such as this to sort out the riff from the raff as there’s still a lot of very good games being made but perhaps being lost amongst the ever expanding boundaries of what constitutes an adventure game!

You're absolutely right about the "expanding boundaries" making it harder than ever to find anything. When it comes to adventure games I'd rather read the opinions of people who are primarily adventure gamers.
Posted by: Monokuma

Re: Buying options for adventure games - 06/27/17 06:08 AM

Replying to #1115083.

I would like to present my opinions on some of the issues presented here but keep in mind that although I write the way I write, this is strictly my own personal opinions and I represent only myself which I believe is a very small minority.

First let me start by saying that I don't like the digital only distribution of games and I especially hate the monopoly of Steam. They key words here are the 'only' and the 'monopoly'.

I don't mind having the option to buy digital games but I hate that nowadays is the only way to buy games especially adventure games. Even the boxed editions have an empty disc with a Steam installer and the key printed on the disc. More than 90% of all western video games are Steam exclusives. And the numbers rises up to 99% when we are talking about new adventure games.

Let me be clear on something else too. I like boxed games, the same way I like my music on CDs and my movies on DVDs. I like having a complete product that I own. I started playing games because someone lent me a game, the same I way that I discovered the music that I like when someone lent me a cassette tape. The big Sierra boxes made a huge impression on me back then and that's one the main reasons I started loving adventure games. Buying a boxed game was a big deal and you felt like you bought a treasure when nowadays buying a digital game means nothing to almost everyone. You hear about huge backlogs, you hear that almost 40% of Steam games sold have never even been installed, you hear about about games that sold millions (most of them through bundles) and not a single person played and finished them (they can verify it through achievements and such). Today's games are treated like gossip newspapers, good for a couple of hours of stupid fun and then throw them to the garbage so tomorrow you can buy the new one.

Digital distribution has brought a different mindset to people buying games. That games is something you play the week it is released and then you move on to some other thing, the new thing. That they are not masterpieces, not even simple pieces of art, just some piece of entertainment to spend a few hours today therefore you shouldn't be concerned if and how you will be able to play them tomorrow because for tomorrow we will have new things for you. There is no reason to play an 'old' game. Old games stink so buy our new one which is the same game with a new wrapper. I used to spend months planning which game to buy and now I see people buying games in bulk, games which they don't even intend to play. On the other hand when I buy am adventure game I expect to buy a complete product, a game with a beginning a middle and an end, something that will speak to me and that I will be happy to put back in my shelf after I finish it to look at it and reminisce. And I miss not only the physical stuff but the mindset behind their creation. I feel that digital distributed adventures are made by people who only want some money they don't give it everything they have to make the best game they can. I just don't feel the love. And the constant updates show to me that their creator didn't even take the time to at least provide a hassle free experience. People say that Steam made updating and patching easier but I never used a patch in my old boxed games and I never needed one. Maybe I was lucky but to me the easiness with which companies release patches without apologizing says that they only did the minimum work necessary to release their games and get their money. Games shouldn't need patches to work. What people think is a plus to me it's a huge minus. I allows companies to get away with almost anything. Sometimes I feel they are just trying to see with how much an unfinished product they can get away with.

As for Steam the things are simple, Steam is a service. It may be a good service for some people, but a service nonetheless. You don't own anything. You are buying a license that is valid as long as Steam wants. I have read in forums people saying how you can use the offline mode or make backups of your game but, and it's a big but, those thing offline Steam will ask you to login in order to start your game and when you try to restore your backup it will also ask you to login. Steam is also a very good DRM. I mean if you could set it offline and backup it those poor pirates would have nothing to hack and crack anymore. But the truth is that if you take your laptop to your cabin by the lake to spend the summer where you don't have internet, it doesn't matter how much money you have paid on games, after 10 days nothing will start. And don't forget that Steam as a company has the right to alter the license agreement to whatever it likes and at this point your are trapped. If you don't agree anymore with the agreement you face the dilemma of either forcefully accepting it and keep playing or rejecting it and losing every single game you have ever bought from them. The bigger your game library is the more you are willing to accept whatever the agreement says. By now they can put whatever they like in their licence agreement and people will have to accept it, because they have a monopoly and most of the game can't be bought anywhere else and because by now every pc gamer have invested a huge amount of money on them and they don't want to lose them.

The second most important reason why I don't play many of the newer adventure games and I don't post or even visit forums like this one is because of the quality of said games and about what other people consider an adventure game. What is an adventure game to you? What is your definition? What you expect to find on an adventure game? According to my definition of what an adventure game is and what I enjoy, they don't make adventure games anymore with very few exceptions. I don't want to say that they are dead because that raises hell everywhere and red flags are popping all over me but I certainly feel so. And while people refuse to accept that their forums are drying up and adventure gamers move on to other things or other video game genres. Nowadays they make casual games, walking simulators, choice and consequence games, interactive movies, visual novels, action adventures, puzzle games, puzzle platformers, exploration games, horror games, environmental games etc. And as if that wasn't enough the adventure games got the worst of all the current new fads. Episodic games that take decades to finish, episodic games that are abandoned, Kickstarters that never give results, kickstarters that produce very poor results, kickstarters that blackmail (pay me right now on this specific month if you want to ever buy this game in a box which I will release in a couple of years because after that I won't sell it to you). We have unfinished games, unplayable games, adventure games that end up having zero gameplay and therefore not being adventures.

When I visit forums about adventure games I expect to find information about adventure games (again according to my own interpretation of the term). Nowadays the term adventure game has been stretched so much that even the sites/forums that I liked don't cater to my tastes anymore. Most of the reviews on another similar site end up with the phrase 'even if it very light on gameplay'. Then I'm sorry but it has no right being here, stop wasting my time with reviews about 'adventure' games with no gameplay because to me those aren't even games.

And let's get back on Steam and the quality of games. Steam has made it quite easy for anybody to publish video games with zero quality control. You can publish whatever trash you like even your middle school project and with some good marketing you can put in a bundle with a couple of well known games and make some good money. So everyone is making games nowadays. Nobody cares about the quality. Especially in adventure games almost 95% of them are made by very small companies or two guys in their garage. We have pixelated graphics which are worse than those we had in late 80s, we have almost not existent animation, overly stylized graphics with the lowest possible detail, bad or not existent voice overs, remakes of old classics (yes, half the new games are trying to mimic the graphics in the 90s and the other half are remaking old games from the 90s with HD graphics!), games with very small duration and games with exceptionally easy puzzles. As for the adventure games made by 'real' companies there are almost never real adventure games. We have reached a point where we consider QTEs as puzzles. What was the last good adventure game you played with current production values? The adventures of today they either have very low production values or have nothing to do with real adventures.

Let me also tell something about the quality of the games and how I understand the term. Back in the day besides the story and the puzzles there was also a huge sense of accomplishment in making progress in an adventure game and the game itself rewarded you in various quirky ways. Some had score with many points not easily found and not necessary to complete the game, some had a narrator commenting on every move you made right or wrong, in the parser days they had almost a response for everything you thought to try, picking up a simple item often led to a lengthy and hilarious animation. Yes even picking up a simple item got a unique reward. I recently played the Warcraft Adventures and I was amazed with how much I enjoyed it and I realized most of it was because of the different animations throughout the game. For example, in order to climb a ladder (which was simply a way to get to the map for fast-travel) the game had 4-5 different funny animations! If it was made today it would have none. Click on the ladder and you go to the map screen. I now that nowadays we have trophies and achievements but they don't feel integrated to the game just something that was added afterwards because they had to. I even liked the death scenes on the earlier days and I still consider them a plus. They were almost always funny plus they gave you a hint on what you did wrong. And that's what I consider quality, the incentive to explore the game world for small rewards that don't forward the story but provide entertainment and that is something I rarely find today. We used to say never use a walkthrough because you will miss half the game. That doesn't apply anymore and that's why have those stupid autosave systems. When you go from point A to point B there is no reason to get back to A because you have done absolutely everything possible since you are now in B, therefore a saving routine is useless. There is nothing besides the main actions that progress the story.

Maybe I am a bit harsh but I started Silence today on PS4 and after 1 hour I couldn't understand if I was still on some kind of tutorial or not. The only thing I had to do was press X when I was prompted. The game decided which hotspot I should click next and what action I should perform on that, it even kindly moved the cursor on top of the hotspot. I am sure that if I found some kind of auto-fire to continuously press X the game would play by itself, like it happened to me on an episode of The Walking Dead where the phone rang, I forgot to pause and when I got back the episode had finished by itself and I could't even load I had to restart the episode. That's why I don't consider those games as adventure games and I'm not interested in visiting forums and sites where those kind of 'games' are presented as adventure games. When I visit a site about heavy metal I don't want to read reviews about a jazz band or a rap band simply because they featured in their albums a metal guitarist.

All of the above lead to my final point that digital distribution led to big money with everybody trying to make their product accessible to as many people as possible and in the end destroying labels and genres. Everything is a hybrid. There are no more pure games therefore new gamers don't get attached to a certain type of game. I liked Mass Effect 3 which I bought for an RPG and ended up with a FPS, but I also liked Far Cry 3 which I bought for FPS and ended up with an RPG. So what exactly do I like, FPSs or RPGs? I beliece that's the main reason new people don't become adventure gamers, just gamers. Today they play a classic point and click, tomorrow an FPS and after that an RPG then a racer and so on. It's easy to jump from Dreamfall to Witcher then to Mass Effect then to Assassin's Creed then to Call Of Duty etc. All the lines are blurred and everybody seems to be happy about it since they make a lot more money that way. But that doesn't create fans of a specific type of game so it's not only the adventure game sites that are emptying, all game forums/sites that specialize in a specific genre are emptying.

Some claim that Steam made it easy for a lot of masterpieces to be released but to me for every masterpiece that saw the light of day it allowed 1000 worthless games to be released. And I'm pretty sure that the good games would have seen the light of day either way. The distributors weren't idiots back in the day like we think nowadays. We have reached a point where 5000 new games are released on steam per year and the number almost doubles every year. Almost one quarter of all Steam games were released in 2016. And the average quality of the games gets lower and lower every year. Why shouldn't I release a half hour 'adventure' game about someone walking in a small empty space where everything is still and everyone has disappeared hearing a 2 page narration I wrote while I was on the can? Who knows... maybe on their summer sales I'll hit the jackpot!

As for facebook I never understood its appeal so I never joined, even made a fake account.

And on to the topic of the forums. I personally never write on forums because I strongly disagree with almost everyone nowadays. When I read how some game X which I wouldn't even label as an adventure game is the best thing that ever happened to the scene in the last decade I simply get angry. When I read top 10s, lists and awards about adventure games and I can't find any 'real' adventures in them I get angry. When I read that game deaths, pixel hunting, mazes, red herrings, many open areas at once, many active hotspots per screen and many inventory items are design flaws that stop the flow of the game and thank god they were extinct I get more than angry. But I don't write to the forums to explain my positions anymore. I did it once, I did it twice then I was labelled a troll. I'm a minority and my definition of what an adventure game is simply differs from a new guy's perspective. I won't go into details to explain for example why I love all of those above things but to me they are all integral parts of the adventuring experience.

Take pixel hunting for example. We used to scan to scan the screen with the mouse to try to discover the hotspots and examine everything that seemed interesting. We took our time to appreciate the details in the artwork and by slowly examining every inch of the screen we 'investigated' the area. Now we press the hotspot indicator, we get only a couple of hotspots and ignore everything else that is on the screen as background. We don't care what is happening on the background or about the details in the artwork. We know that we haven't missed anything and we breeze through. We don't investigate our surroundings anymore. In the parser days we used to 'look' and then 'examine' everything to get as much information we could about our environment. Now even when there is a hotspot with look action it's pointless. You see a dog, you examine him and you get a line "It's a dog". The only reason there is a hotspot there is because you know that at some point you will have to use something on him. So by removing pixel hunting I feel that adventure games lost the exploring-your-surroundings feeling that early adventures had and decreased their immersion and difficulty.

Sorry for the length. I got a bit carried away...
Posted by: gamenut

Re: Buying options for adventure games - 06/27/17 07:37 AM

DITTO REENIE!!!! I SO, So, So very much miss GOOD adventure games. Adventure games like the ones you mentioned. I have posted in the past about making some 'adventure' games more user friendly to people with arthritis or reflex or other reflex issues. HOw HARD can it be for a developer to put in a 'hidden' staircase or pathway so those of us who have lost our jumping/running etc., skills can STILL play the game!? How hard would it be for the developers to put in a work-around for timed areas... After all you (the 'developer') just made a game for gosh sakes what's the prob of making it playable for MORE PEOPLE?? and gee, just think of the extra bit of lolly you could make???
SO-I REALLY APPRECIATED YOUR POST SO MUCH!!!
and to the Moderators...sorry about getting off the topic of Steam.
Posted by: RichAlexis

Re: Buying options for adventure games - 06/27/17 08:54 AM

Bravo! I agree wholeheartedly with your passionate plea, Monokuma! thumbsup

No, it wasn't too long, and I don't think you got carried away.

I worked in the publishing business for quite a few years, and witnessed the same trend with a lot of regret and frustration: customers nowadays often crave enormous amounts of up-to-date online content, yet see little to no intrinsic value in purely digital content (information, media, entertainment) other than that it should be there for virtually free. Hardly any consideration is given to the often very laborious, costly and imaginative process of creating, maintaining and upgrading it. Also, people have become very irritable and quick to criticize flaws that may not even be flaws but require a bit of attention, thought or empathy, and then quickly forget about it and discard it for the next trend or thrill. Frequently, this is only because it's just a little bit cheaper, bigger (Even more data! Even more megapixels!), faster, high-def, louder, etc.

Regrettably, the ICT industry reinforces this trend with its endless stream of forced upgrades, patches and modifications that wreak havoc with any sense of stability and end-user control, and make everything obsolete that was bought a year ago. In other words, quantity with its shallow slogans of new=more=better is nearly always valued over quality.

I certainly would still prefer carefully created tangible content as a cornerstone, a unified and stable whole as on a disk, at a reasonable price that does justice to its creators, and with added variable online content for subscribers - that is without the excessive user tracking and privacy invasion of so-called free services.

Best,

Rich

Posted by: Reenie

Re: Buying options for adventure games - 06/27/17 12:53 PM

Yes, Gamenut, it is my fervent wish that some accommodation might be made by game developers for people with limited physical abilities of any kind. I don't play "Action" or RPG games or games with timed aspects because the stress triggers chest pain for me, so if I buy an Adventure game that has decided to impose those elements on the game, possibly in an effort to draw in players from other genres, I have to quit it. I have never understood why they do this in the first place. The adventure gamers I know often avoid "Action" games and would be put off by it, and the "Action" gamers I know would be bored silly with all the searching and problem solving in Adventure games. Is it really worth it to game companies to take the risk that enough crossover players will be attracted that their sales for that game will rise?

Monokuma, I applaud every aspect of your posting, too. You should consider posting it to a blog, as it is so comprehensive, clear and succinct. As I read it, it felt like you read my mind. All important points, well expressed, without rant, just clearly-communicated disappointment. And yet, there will be some who will take away the thought, "Oh, just get over it. Everything changes with time, and games are no different." I have heard and seen this response.

To those of us who grew up WITH the gaming industry, and watched it grow from simple stick figures on a Commodore through the early, pixelated Kings Quest era, to the beautiful expressions of games such as The Longest Journey and Fallout, there was seldom a reason to complain other than the odd glitch. Each time a change in gaming occurred, it was to further the development of the games themselves. It only meant we had to keep upgrading our computers just to stay playable with the fascinating realms that became available (and who was ever disappointed to have a faster computer? ha ha)

There were differences in player styles pretty early, and those who wanted to dash around headlong and shoot anything that moved found a genre developed just for them, while those of us who wanted to take the time to savor the environment, appreciate the artwork and get to know the characters ~ as well as find, create, and fix things ~ had our genre. It worked.

Having the opportunity to walk into a GameSpot or other such gaming store and explore an entire wall of boxes of games was pure heaven! Our son was seven when he began to share our enthusiasm for gaming, and so such visits became a weekend family outing, eagerly awaited. We'd drool over the new games, and put them on our Christmas list. One of the biggest thrills was seeing a wrapped box that was "game sized." It was hard to wait for it. We never dreamed this wouldn't last. We are 70 now and our son is nearly 50. We all still play computer games, it just isn't the way it was. Most of the market now seems directed to those who play games on Xbox or similar devices, not even on a PC or laptop, and these games seem designed to be played in one headlong dash toward being to fastest to complete them. Yes, there are more games being issued now, but for every 100 games that is issued, we find one or two that engage us.

I have no axe to grind about Steam and its monopoly, because playing on line doesn't pose a problem for me. I just don't like the abstract quality of "owning" a Steam-issued game that I have to log on to the Internet to play. I want a hard copy in my hand or a download that is on my HD without need for any further input. Some of their games are like that, and I bought a few of those. However, I can't separate the wheat from the huge piles of chaff on Steam easily, not without spending a lot more time than I prefer to do in reading about games on other gaming sites ~ and even this doesn't always work. I bought more than one game from Steam and found playing them impossible due to the theme and/or playing requirements (horror/torture/gore themes, jumping, timed stuff, etc. not mentioned anywhere). So I don't go there anymore unless it is to look for an old favorite that has been reformatted to run on Win10 so I can replay it. Bottom Line: I don't use Steam to buy new games, so if that is their raison d'etre, they are failing in it for me.

Thanks again for your well-written response to the topic! It was a pleasure to read it.
Posted by: Jenny100

Re: Buying options for adventure games - 06/27/17 05:15 PM

Thank you, Monokuma, for a well thought out post.
Originally Posted By: Monokuma
But the truth is that if you take your laptop to your cabin by the lake to spend the summer where you don't have internet, it doesn't matter how much money you have paid on games, after 10 days nothing will start.

I was not aware that "offline mode" was limited in that way. I suppose the pirates have some way around it, but it stinks that people who paid money for a game would have to depend on pirates to play it when on vacation.

Originally Posted By: Monokuma
I recently played the Warcraft Adventures and I was amazed with how much I enjoyed it and I realized most of it was because of the different animations throughout the game.

I watched a playthrough of Warcraft Adventures on YouTube. I thought it was WAY better than anything recent. Yet they decided not to release it back in 1997, apparently because they thought it wasn't good enough?

Originally Posted By: Monokuma
When I read how some game X which I wouldn't even label as an adventure game is the best thing that ever happened to the scene in the last decade I simply get angry. When I read top 10s, lists and awards about adventure games and I can't find any 'real' adventures in them I get angry.

I feel the same way.
It's like they're determined to kill adventure games by dilution and mislabelling since they weren't able to kill them off by simply stating they were dead.

Originally Posted By: Monokuma
Digital distribution has brought a different mindset to people buying games. That games is something you play the week it is released and then you move on to some other thing, the new thing.

I don't think that mindset is exactly new, but I do think it's the mindset that the industry is fostering.

Originally Posted By: Monokuma
But I don't write to the forums to explain my positions anymore. I did it once, I did it twice then I was labelled a troll. I'm a minority and my definition of what an adventure game is simply differs from a new guy's perspective.

I can only imagine what it was like to have played adventure games from the beginning. I didn't have a computer until the late 1990's, and since my first computer wasn't set up for sound in DOS, my first adventure games were Windows games, mostly 1st person, rather than the "classic" DOS-based Sierra and LucasArts games. But I still found a lot of adventure games to play, even before I learned how to configure the computer for sound in DOS, and I enjoyed nearly all the games I bought. If I were starting to play games now, instead of back in the late 1990's, I don't think I'd be finding much, and would probably give up. There is no longer a name for the type of game I want, and reading reviews of hundreds of games just to find one game of the type I want doesn't appeal to me. The signal-to-noise ratio is just too low.
Posted by: Cari

Re: Buying options for adventure games - 06/29/17 07:20 AM

The reason why I deleted my Steam account is because I’m very wary of downloads as its one of the easiest way to infect your PC with a virus. While very confidential documents are stored on my firm’s laptop, I use my own PC for day to day running and which I backup weekly.

Steam unfortunately is very attractive to hackers. The amount of money stored in games wallets is so big it’s a virtual money tree. While adventure gamer's have small wallets, Shooters store so much more. Hackers who can infiltrate government networks etc are getting more and more of a menace.
I am no IT expert but others can give you advice to at least back up your files regularly.
Steam has been attacked by hackers and gamer's have had their wallets emptied and it will happen again, please take care.
Posted by: BrownEyedTigre

Re: Buying options for adventure games - 06/29/17 09:16 AM

Cari, I'm sorry, but I'm just sitting here shaking my head.

#1. Steam is as safe, if not safer, than any other online store. People have lost their money because they use the same passwords across multiple websites so if the login is the same people can access their Amazon, Steam, BigFish, Gog etc account. The big hack they had, did NOT involve any access to to wallets or to steal anything except partial personal info that could be found online anyways if you are a good sleuth.

#2. Steam has a 2 part authentication system in place. I get a text message on my phone if anyone (including me) tries to access my account and it sends me a unique code each time that I have to enter. My account is quite secure.

#3. Don't put money in your steam wallet. It's an optional feature, that is completely unnecessary to using or purchasing games.

#4. THere are sellers on ebay that sell codes to steam games and when purchases are complete are asking people for their login details to their steam account so they can manually place it in their library. YES, this is true, happened to a member of a group I am in. REviews for the seller insist it's legit and the seller doesn't touch anything and they haven't had any problems. OMG! People are doing this! Then when they get hacked a year later or other accounts they own elsewhere on the web get hacked because they use the same login, people blame Steam or others. Many times the culprit is in the mirror. Educate yourselves on online safety before you venture forth.

#5. Places like STeam have many safeguards in place to not spread viruses. People getting viruses on Steam downloaded games get them from mods they download for darkside games. This has nothing to do with Steam.

#6. You need to take care ANYWHERE on the web. Anyone who thinks anyplace is completely safe, is delusional, but to single out Steam is just plain ridiculous. If you don't want to use it, awesome. I certainly will not try and convince you, it's your decision, but please don't spread propaganda or scare tactics to keep those that would like to use it away from it.

Can we go back to the original question asked, please and thank you? This isn't a "I hate Steam thread", it just requested names of websites to download from.

Ana

Posted by: Draclvr

Re: Buying options for adventure games - 06/29/17 10:27 AM

I have said to all the people whose computers I work on, the first line of defense on your computer is not your anti-virus or anti-spam software... it is YOU. If you do something stupid - such as giving your Steam credentials to a seller on ebay - you are the problem. Steam is no more attractive to hackers than any other game seller such as GOG or Big Fish.

Downloads from Steam or GOG or Amazon or any other secure website are not going to be infected. That's just nuts. However, sites which I previously trusted such as Tucows and Cnet now bundle large amounts of malware, spam and just plain junk in their download wrappers. Good grief! Just be aware and careful!

More and more websites use two step authentication to protect their customers. GOG started doing it several months ago, but Steam did it over a year ago.

An earlier post said places like Steam allow tons of bad games to get released. Ummm... so what? The marketplace will take care of that - but it sure won't stop me from buying and downloading the games I want that are a bit off the beaten track.

I've tried to defuse the turn this thread took several times - the question was NOT, "Is Steam bad?" The question was, "Where can I download games from?" From someone who WANTED to download games. Is there some reason we can't all just use the venues and sellers we prefer without trying to convince everyone else that "My way is the only way?"
Posted by: Cari

Re: Buying options for adventure games - 06/30/17 08:39 AM

Dismissing a member’s opinion as ‘nuts’ is not the kind of language I have come across in my years as a member.
This is a fact from Valve less than two years ago.
Quote:
“Around 77,000 accounts [are] hijacked and pillaged each month". "Enough money now moves around the system that stealing virtual Steam goods has become a real business for skilled hackers," Valve says.
Posted by: BrownEyedTigre

Re: Buying options for adventure games - 06/30/17 10:37 AM

You neglected to say the most important part of the article Cari, which states how they solved the problem with the two-step authenticator that I have. Nothing can be done on my account without my approval via a code sent to my phone. When using data, it is very important to use current data, because technology is updated daily. What may have happened two years ago, is a far cry from what is happening today. Steam article.

Once again, this is not a steam thread. Please stay on topic.
Posted by: Draclvr

Re: Buying options for adventure games - 06/30/17 10:38 AM

I'm sorry, but implying that Steam game downloads are apt to be infected is just not true. Steam deserves a great deal of the criticism it receives, but it is still an option for those of us who download our games. I certainly prefer a disk, especially with my horrid internet connection, but if I want to continue gaming, I will have to accept some compromise on my part. I also download games from GOG and Big Fish. I build and work on computers for other people, so am not a novice to computers and how to use them safely.

As for your quote, you might want to mention that this is dated December 2015 which is when hacking of Steam accounts skyrocketed following the introduction of Steam Trading.
Quote:
Therefore, it's taken steps to improve security and close loopholes. The developer also says it's improved how and when it informs users that their account is at risk and has introduced a self-locking system and two-factor authentication through Steam Guard.


Love Steam or hate them, they are another option for buying adventure games as the original poster asked.
Posted by: Jenny100

Re: Buying options for adventure games - 06/30/17 03:31 PM

Originally Posted By: Cari
Dismissing a member’s opinion as ‘nuts’ is not the kind of language I have come across in my years as a member.

I agree that was harsh.
And you're right that Steam is a target -- moreso than other game download sites because of the trading of virtual goods they've implemented (and money involved) as well as because of their size. Valve/Steam has said so themselves.

Computer and website security is an ongoing process. It is never solved for good, no matter what may be claimed by advertisers. The bad guys are very clever at finding new vulnerabilities, both in website software and in the Internet system itself. The Internet was not developed with security in mind -- security wasn't a concern in the early days of the Internet -- and thoroughly patching it without breaking it is a huge job that may not be possible.

Steam has a grade of F at BBB, mostly due to poor customer service and reneging on promised refunds, and that's from January this year, not two years ago. You can read the "pattern of complaint" at BBB ***here***.

It's not likely the game downloads are infected though -- at least not beyond the usual monitoring that comes with using the Steam client.
Infected downloads usually come from websites that offer "free" games. For example this...
https://www.bleepingcomputer.com/forums/t/303896/infected-with-game-house-games-pop-up-window/

Quote:
Therefore, it's taken steps to improve security and close loopholes. The developer also says it's improved how and when it informs users that their account is at risk and has introduced a self-locking system and two-factor authentication through Steam Guard.

Steam Guard is "two step" authentication, which is not the same as "two-factor"
Two-factor specifically means one each (not two the same) of any two of the following

something you know (passwords)
something you are (fingerprints, retina scans)
something you have (security tokens) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Security_token

Steam Guard is "two step" authentication -- two "something you knows" -- not "two factor"

Security experts have stated that "two factor" authentication is very safe, so advertisers have subverted the definition and conflated it with "two step" by calling it "two factor authentication using SMS." Steam isn't the only online website guilty of this by any means. Just be aware that Steam Guard and similar systems that use SMS or email aren't true "two factor" authentication. SMS has multiple vulnerabilities, and the difference in security between true "two factor" authentication and using SMS is huge. An SMS message on whatever smart phone you receive the message on is no substitute for a real security token.
Posted by: JDE

Re: Buying options for adventure games - 06/30/17 05:49 PM

Please excuse me,but what is DRM?
Posted by: Jenny100

Re: Buying options for adventure games - 06/30/17 05:59 PM


Originally Posted By: JDE
Please excuse me,but what is DRM?

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Digital_rights_management
Posted by: mbday630

Re: Buying options for adventure games - 06/30/17 07:29 PM

I just like the option of buying games online. I agree with Drac - buyer beware. We have to have some smarts about buying games online. In fact, Drac told me about now keeping your Visa card that they have your number. I always pressed that "remember me for next time" button. silly me.
Posted by: JDE

Re: Buying options for adventure games - 06/30/17 11:36 PM

Thank you.
Posted by: Cari

Re: Buying options for adventure games - 07/01/17 08:52 AM

I don’t hate Steam though I admit I don’t like monopolies as they hardly work for the consumers benefit and try to illuminate all choice, but I agree with Ana that its nice to see the developers getting paid for their work at last.
I quit Steam because my PC sometimes carries confidential info, nothing to do with me but related to the nature of my job.
My previous post was to stress the need of backing up your files. A simple way to protect them should the worst happens, nothing more than that.
Posted by: LeBelleRachael

Re: Buying options for adventure games - 07/08/17 11:25 AM

Well I think everyone has made some good points. But I agree with Anna that Steam is good for Developers, which is good 4 Games. happydance If Steam hadn't been doing alot of stuff right, they would not be as big as they are! I like the way they promote new games. thumbsup If developers can't make money...they won't be making Games! hearts And there have been a lot of sleazy distributors in the past!

On the other hand, Steam is a little 2 Big and a little 2 monopolistic, a little 2 "Big Brother" at times. cry We need to patronize more quality competitors to even the playing field!
razz