Let’s lower to the chase: For many individuals, PC gaming is synonymous with Steam. Valve’s ubiquitous gaming shopper is each storefront and repair, delivering a one-stop store for purchasing video games, enjoying and managing these video games, and even constructing out a mates record to speak with when you recreation.
However that’s simply the tip of the iceberg. Steam’s rife with hidden options that may enable you to get extra out of your PC gaming expertise—tips that few individuals ever contact. Listed below are a few of the most helpful, beginning with obscure (but useful) library administration instruments on this web page earlier than diving into extra unique suggestions.
Optimize your Steam library
Add non-Steam video games to your library
From DRM-free indie titles to EA video games bought completely via Origin, not each PC recreation graces Steam’s digital cabinets—which could be a downside for those who recreation and socialize completely via Valve’s service. Happily, Valve allows you to add non-Steam video games to the Steam shopper.
Steam nonetheless gained’t maintain the rogue title updated or save your recreation to Steam Cloud, however including non-Steam video games to your library lets your folks see if you’re enjoying the sport, and unlocks the Steam overlay function (Shift + Tab), together with full screenshot and in-game chat performance.
Received it? Good. Now open the Steam shopper and head to Video games > Add a Non-Steam Sport to My Library. The method is easy from there. If you wish to add a customized picture for the sport in your Library’s grid view, simply right-click it and choose Set Customized Picture, then go from there. The high quality of us in r/steamgrid on Reddit will whip up customized photos for video games for those who’d like. You’ll find a ton of customized grid photos on the Steam Banners website or Deviant Art, as properly.
Handle the place your video games land
Perhaps you wish to shift all of your titles onto a blazing-fast SSD, or perhaps you put in a spacious new conventional arduous drive that’s simply begging to be stuffed with gaming goodness. Both manner, Steam makes it a cinch so as to add new folders by which to retailer your video games.
Open Steam and head to Steam > Settings > Downloads, then click on the Steam Library Folders button. From right here, you may add as many folders for recreation installations as you’d like. When you’ve added folders, you’ll be given a Select location for set up possibility if you’re putting in a brand new recreation.
Even higher, it’s useless easy to maneuver your beforehand put in video games between directories now. Shifting recreation installs (from, say, an SSD to a tough drive) used to require arcane trickery, however now all you must do is right-click on a recreation, choose Properties, then Native Recordsdata, and on the backside you’ll see a Transfer Set up Folder button. Clicking it brings up all of your accessible Steam folder areas. Straightforward-peasy.
Batch set up or uninstall video games
Excellent news for folk migrating to a brand new PC or just trying to filter lots of house in a brief period of time: Steam can install or delete games in bulk.
Open your Steam library in Element or Checklist View and choose the video games you’d like to put in by Crtl + clicking on every. (The video games you select will seem highlighted.) Whenever you’re performed, merely right-click on one of many video games and choose the Set up possibility. Growth! You’ll be greeted by bulk set up choices for the whole mass of video games.
Conversely, you can too choose a number of video games which are already put in in your arduous drive, then right-click and select Delete Native Knowledge to wipe all of them off your PC in a single fell swoop.
Type your put in video games by measurement
Talking of deleting stuff, for those who’re attempting to liberate storage for brand spanking new video games, the flexibility to kind your Steam video games by set up measurement may help you discover the most important space-suckers. It’s hidden in a fiendish spot, nevertheless.
Enter your library and set it to Checklist View utilizing the View choices close to the upper-right nook. As soon as that’s enabled, click on the little + icon on the far proper of the display screen, simply beneath the View choices. You’re going to wish to click on the “Dimension on Disk” possibility on the backside of the record that seems.
That provides a brand new “Dimension on Disk” column to the record view. Click on it as soon as to kind in ascending measurement order, and once more to kind by descending measurement order.
Categorize your Steam library
By default, Steam arranges the video games in your library alphabetically. Straightforward sufficient, proper? Not for those who’ve amassed a catalog of lots of (or hundreds!) of video games, or for those who merely wish to browse video games in a sure style. Happily, the service presents categorization instruments, although it’s all guide work.
Choose a number of video games in your library, then right-click and select Set Classes. A separate window opens, and you’ll create a class title for the chosen video games (or add them to present classes for those who’ve already made some). Go nuts sorting your video games by style, collection, ones you’re presently enjoying, ones you need to play quickly, or anything you provide you with.
Again up your video games
Certain, the Steam Cloud retains your save video games good and safe on Valve’s servers, however it solely backs up your save video games—and solely on titles that help the function. Backing up your video games themselves protects in opposition to life’s “Oh crap!” moments, making certain that you simply don’t threat corruption or angering your Web supplier by re-downloading your complete library in case your arduous drive offers up the ghost.
Guess what? Steam can deal with your recreation backups, too. Head into your library, right-click on any put in recreation, and choose Backup Sport Recordsdata. A dialog field will pop up with a listing of all of your put in video games, permitting you to pick out which titles you’d wish to backup. The method is easy from there.
Restoring these backups is simply as simple. Merely log into your Steam account, then open the backup folder and run the steambackup.exe file (which you’ll grab here for those who’ve misplaced it). Observe the on-screen prompts from there. Be aware that the executable ought to auto-run for those who’ve backed your video games as much as a CD or DVD. In the event you run into bother, try Steam’s backup FAQ.
Steam’s backup isn’t flawless. It gained’t, for instance, again up mods, customized configuration recordsdata, or video games that make the most of third-party installers, similar to MMOs and plenty of different free-to-play video games. Nor will it again up any video games that don’t name Steam house. You’ll should deal with these manually. However most significantly, Steam’s recreation backup function gained’t backup your native save video games. Take a look at PCWorld’s guide to backing up your PC save games to make sure that the princess comes with you to a different fortress.
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