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Steam Now Selling Non-Gaming Software

By - Source: Valve Email | B 33 comments

Steam is now offering eight non-gaming software titles for 10% off their regular price this week.

In what could be taken as a sign of striking back against Amazon and Microsoft, Valve has officially launched its non-gaming software section on Steam. The company's digital distribution platform is now offering ArtRage Studio Pro, CameraBag 2, GameMaker: Studio, 3D-Coat, 3DMark Vantage and 3DMark 11.

To celebrate the launch, all Software titles on Steam will be available for 10 percent off their regular price throughout the week. For instance, GameMaker: Studio Professional originally costs $99 USD, but it's now on sale for $89.10. Both 3DMark Vantage and 3DMark 11 originally sell for $19.99, but this week they're priced at $17.99. Valve's Source Filmmaker is free.

While this may not sound like a big deal, many software titles now offered through Steam take advantage of popular Steamworks features. Like PC games, installations and updates are managed by the Steam client, so users won't have to worry about heading to the appropriate website to download the latest patch. The user's work is also stored in the Steam Cloud space so that files can be accessed anywhere.

GameMaker Studio, for example, features integration with Steam Workshop that allows GameMaker users to share their work via Steam, Valve said. 3D Coat allows users to actually import their 3D models directly into Team Fortress 2.

So far Valve's selection seems to focus on the developer/PC gaming crowd, but that will likely change in the near future. Genre listings include Accounting, Animation & Modeling, Audio Production, Design & Illustration, Education, Photo Editing, Software Training, Utilities, Video Production, and Web Publishing.

"The 40 million gamers frequenting Steam are interested in more than playing games," said Mark Richardson at Valve. "They have told us they would like to have more of their software on Steam, so this expansion is in response to those customer requests."

As previously reported, this launch could be Valve's assault on Amazon. The two companies are seemingly going head-to-head on the PC gaming front, fighting for the consumer dollar with rock-bottom prices in various promotions. Valve may also be attacking Microsoft in fear that Windows 8 will create a walled garden with the new Windows platform.

 

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  • 13 Hide
    Pgooch , October 2, 2012 10:26 PM
    kudos to steam
Other Comments
  • 13 Hide
    Pgooch , October 2, 2012 10:26 PM
    kudos to steam
  • 9 Hide
    Copyrighted , October 2, 2012 10:34 PM
    Not surprised, so many people use Steam, its just more money for Valve.
  • 0 Hide
    Abion47 , October 2, 2012 10:36 PM
    "How many of your friends are using Quickbook Pro?"

    This should have some interesting results.
  • 2 Hide
    master_chen , October 2, 2012 10:38 PM
    It is a start of a new vision on how online stores should be. Steam just makes the first step...
    I think that, in 10 years from now, there would be a lot more high-quality stores like Steam.
    Steam is a definite pioneer in this kind of thing, but the progress won't stop on it.

    "Hymn of Steam". Click, and sing along with it if you truly like Steam.
  • 7 Hide
    memadmax , October 2, 2012 11:13 PM
    There is plenty of equivalent software for free...
  • 0 Hide
    DRosencraft , October 2, 2012 11:33 PM
    I can see how some might be interested/benefit from this, but personally I have little interest. Most programs nowadays have some sort of integrated update checker, so there's hardly ever a reason to go combing the website for updates or patches. Don't like cloud services, so I wouldn't be using that. Really the only real upside is probably the chance to get good deals on software, but how often is that gonna happen? Good luck to anyone who is looking forward to this. I hope it works out well for you.
  • 9 Hide
    kinggraves , October 3, 2012 12:08 AM
    So now instead of buying the software directly from the site and getting the updates sent to me automatically through the software as long as the company exists, I can buy the software through Steam and have Steam update the software.

    So what?

    Is Steam going to give me the license longer than the company? They wouldn't do that, it's still up to the publisher whether the product is updated for free or requires a new purchase. All you do when you buy software online is buy the license number. I mean, sure it's nice having things served through one platform, but the only advantage I see is slight convenience. What happens if your account is compromised or you just have a falling out with Steam? Not only do you lose your games now, but also your software as well. This is expensive software too, professional grade. People have to realize the risks that come along with convenience. If your house only has one door, it's more secure against being entered. But if that door becomes compromised itself, you are trapped.

    I'll manage more than one account for my software, thanks.
  • -3 Hide
    Teeroy32 , October 3, 2012 12:10 AM
    DRosencraft
    Quote:


    I can see how some might be interested/benefit from this, but personally I have little interest. Most programs nowadays have some sort of integrated update checker, so there's hardly ever a reason to go combing the website for updates or patches. Don't like cloud services, so I wouldn't be using that. Really the only real upside is probably the chance to get good deals on software, but how often is that gonna happen? Good luck to anyone who is looking forward to this. I hope it works out well for you.


    But wouldn't having all your software updating in the one place be better then have several updaters running at once chewing resources and bandwidth, you know just like Linux has done for eons, damn it sucks when you turn on your machine and flash is harassing you, same for java, chrome, Firefox adobe reader, package management on Linux has always been one of its shining lights, good to see apple has got on board with that idea a few years ago and now MS is finally doing it with win 8, only problem with Apple and Microsoft they release the patches when they feel like it, Linux a patch is generally available within a day after the problem has been found, I can see Linux becoming a lot stronger in the next few years, it won't beet Windows for ages if ever, but I don't laugh any more when Mark Shuttleworth reckons Ubuntu will have 5% of the desktop market soon, now with Steam coming to Ubuntu I can see quite a few techy gamers will at least give it ago, and when they get used to it and see the benefits several of them will stay, gaming is all I keep windows for, oh, and streaming to my bloody 360, but I have a new rig now, I'll just convert what I want to watch in a couple of minutes and just use a flash drive, The 360 is a bit redundant now, I use my old Pentium 4 Prescott with a HD6670 as a HTPC any way, online movies and shows (ABC Iview is all I can watch on a silver account in Aus) and never have to worry about what bloody format its in
  • 1 Hide
    spasmolytic46 , October 3, 2012 1:02 AM
    After that updated user agreement that told me to accept losing legal rights or accept losing my games I'm pretty leery of buying anything else steam related for quite awhile. After getting the last of my pre-orders I think I'm just gonna keep it offline for a while.

    Steam's never done me wrong, but I'd be a fool not to be cautious now.
  • -2 Hide
    Kami3k , October 3, 2012 3:46 AM
    spasmolytic46After that updated user agreement that told me to accept losing legal rights or accept losing my games I'm pretty leery of buying anything else steam related for quite awhile. After getting the last of my pre-orders I think I'm just gonna keep it offline for a while.Steam's never done me wrong, but I'd be a fool not to be cautious now.



    WAH! WAH! WAH!
  • 3 Hide
    walter87 , October 3, 2012 4:03 AM
    kinggravesSo now instead of buying the software directly from the site and getting the updates sent to me automatically through the software as long as the company exists, I can buy the software through Steam and have Steam update the software.So what?Is Steam going to give me the license longer than the company? They wouldn't do that, it's still up to the publisher whether the product is updated for free or requires a new purchase. All you do when you buy software online is buy the license number. I mean, sure it's nice having things served through one platform, but the only advantage I see is slight convenience. What happens if your account is compromised or you just have a falling out with Steam? Not only do you lose your games now, but also your software as well. This is expensive software too, professional grade. People have to realize the risks that come along with convenience. If your house only has one door, it's more secure against being entered. But if that door becomes compromised itself, you are trapped.I'll manage more than one account for my software, thanks.


    For anyone that has ever encountered a hacked Steam account. Its not too difficult to recover it. It may seem a little difficult to contact Steam, but you literally have to provide proof of ownership of the account (any registered retail cd key typically works.

    The new Steamguard is also another great way to protect your account. When enabled, Steam automatically detects if your logging in using a new computer and sends an email to verify and submit a temp login key to verify your accessing your account from another email. So unless both your steam account and your personal email are compromised, its 1 more step to verify and protect the user (No other digital distribution service provides this kind of protection.

    So far, it doesn't seem like Steam will be offering yearly license programs like AutoCAD or LabView etc that are typically several $1000 for licenses. Certain 'yearly refresh programs like Nero or other Audio/Video editing software don't require yearly renewal services, so my guess thats the current target software.


    Nobody is forcing you to use Steam nor are they forcing you to buy yearly renewed licenses either. Steam is simply offering a one stop place to organize and manage all your games and now software. (Backing up is a breeze, simply copy your steamapp folder or use the backup utility to transfer to an external harddrive and you can skip installing or download everything multiple times)
  • 6 Hide
    Anonymous , October 3, 2012 4:49 AM
    one thing to keep in mind is that when you pay steam money for a program you are actually not buying or licensing the program like you do when you go to other stores or websites.

    its a subscription and valid only to you and while you maintain an account in good standings with steam. steam can at any time close your account or block you from even logging in or accessing the software that you paid money for. so they close or block your account of any reason and you will not be able to access any of the software that you licensed until you resolve it with them on their terms, if any!

    http://store.steampowered.com/subscriber_agreement/

    this was very apparent recently when steam changed its licensed agreement and everyone had to first ok the new license agreement before they could even access any of the software the they subscribed to with the old license agreement. people who did not agree with the new license agreement were not given any other chose but to agree to the new license agreement or to close their account or remain without access to the software that they subscribed to and paid for until they agreed to the new terms. and they can change their license agreement and/or terms at any time!

    also, they do not guarantee that you will even have access to the software or that it will be updated or supported by the developers. at any time steam can and does go down, sometime of a few seconds and sometimes for hours and during that time you do not have access to your software. even when steam is up it sometimes is very busy and again you may not have access to your software. it's very frustrating to want/need to use the software that you've paid for and be blocked and have no clue what is going on. there is no number to call. the only thing you can do is create a ticket and wait for days or weeks until you get the automated response and then try to work it out with them. by then the service is up.

    also, software on steam is updated usually after the main software is updated by the publisher. they have their own update system as some have posted and that sometime because a problem when you wait months, years and even never for an update. and steam has a very strange and dated way of updating software. sometime you end up having to download the whole thing again. i mean 20 gb game and 20 gb update for 1 byte change! now steam publishers have been changing over to a new format that is like differential format, but their is no guarantee when and if that will happen with any specific title. also when a publisher wants to make a release they submit it to steam, and them steam releases in valve time, and if you don't know what that means you better learn what valve time means!

    https://developer.valvesoftware.com/wiki/Valve_Time

    so while steam has some positives it also has some very important negatives that people need to be aware of that steam does not make clear and often obscure by their use of word such as purchase, buy, ect when they dont mean those words they mean subscribe to subscription that steam at any time can change and subscription where you never ever own any of it and only have access while steam does not close or block your account.

    and with regards to steam blocking your account, if you ever, ever do a charge back or have a dispute with your credit card steam will automatically block your account and you will not have any access to any of the software and its not always clear how many days or weeks you will have to wait after you give in to them before they will let you back in

    there is no phone number to call. all you can do is create a ticket and sweat it out, they will tell you what if anything you have to do

    also, on some purchases that steam flags as suspicious, like too many purchases during the same day, they will again automatically block your account and your only option is to create a ticket and wait days, and if's a weekend, an extended weekend, will it can take a week or more before they get around to getting back to you and unblocking your account.

    and also with regards to them blocking your account beware if you you pay with services like paypal or even a credit card that from time to time challenges the purchase or flags the purchase. your account will automatically get blocked until they get paid

    one more point, all sales are final. no refund, exchange, ect. no i didn't play it or i didn't download it, ect. you will lose and if you try a charge back like i said its locked out until they are happy. now they do at times offer a one time refund, but i dont know how they will implement or allow that for things other than games which could be very expensive.

    so you better know that you want it before you subscribe!

    finally, how do i know all these things well sadly they and more have happened to me :(  now i'm stuck with years of buying from them, well not buying subscribing. was not apparent to me until years later that there was a difference. they word it so very well.

    steam faq

    https://support.steampowered.com/kb_cat.php?s=70fb1e46644a88fdeb1f0bf631b4bdf9&id=3
  • -4 Hide
    master_chen , October 3, 2012 4:55 AM
    Quote:
    WAH! WAH! WAH!

    More like "BOO-HO-HOOOO~!", amirite?
  • 0 Hide
    Anonymous , October 3, 2012 5:02 AM
    i agree wah, wah, wah, boo-ho-hoo! ;) 

    but its the truth i buy the very same game at amazon.com and i do not need to be hooked to amazon service it runs great even if i close my amazon account

    even with ea i can get chat support or even phone support. wait till you have to wait days or weeks with steam

    finally, you cant give your game to someone else, you cant transfer, later sell as used, ect. and when you die well its not going to your nephews or grand children

    that account was only yours and no body elses. steam catches that you transfer or let someone else use your account and it blocked for ever!

    and their is no i'm sorry can i still have access to my other games. its blocked and no one will help you.

    so before you make to much fun try a charge back for a game like breach or dino beatdown which clearly did not mean the front page advertisement as acknowledged by even the developers
  • -2 Hide
    cobra5000 , October 3, 2012 6:09 AM
    DRosencraftI can see how some might be interested/benefit from this, but personally I have little interest. Most programs nowadays have some sort of integrated update checker, so there's hardly ever a reason to go combing the website for updates or patches. Don't like cloud services, so I wouldn't be using that. Really the only real upside is probably the chance to get good deals on software, but how often is that gonna happen? Good luck to anyone who is looking forward to this. I hope it works out well for you.

    My, aren't you special.
  • 3 Hide
    cats_Paw , October 3, 2012 7:11 AM
    "The user's work is also stored in the Steam Cloud space so that files can be accessed anywhere."
    I just read yesterday that if you read the terms of agreement of any cloud system, you will find out that anything you post on a cloud system "does not belong to you, it belongs to the company providing the cloud system".

    Kinda not interested at all in it then.
  • 4 Hide
    tomfreak , October 3, 2012 7:20 AM
    Unless they give a -75% discount, I am not going to get myself lock into a DRM. The only reason i got into steam is just for that -75%. Nothing more.
  • 1 Hide
    Anonymous , October 3, 2012 9:16 AM
    cats_paw

    re: cloud

    if you look at the terms and conditions for using the cloud its a little worse this that they can sell the stuff you publish to the cloud and not pay you anything! and if they do decide to pay you then its 30% for you 70% for them!

    ouch!

    re: 75% off sales

    yes i buy quite a bit of old stuff at 75% or more when they have their big sales

    but i tend to my by aaa titles other places because of the list i posted above

    still over the years ive amassed a list of hundreds of games, most of which i would never have bought

    still at those deep discounts a real bargain.

    but just keep in mind those games are not yours! so what exactly are you paying for, well sort of limited unguaranteed access to them while your account is in good standing and they don't decide to close it for any unspecified reason

    so think of it like music subscription service. ouch for people who pay $60-$70 or nowadays more for a new aaa game on steam not knowing what they are getting into.
  • 0 Hide
    Anonymous , October 3, 2012 9:21 AM
    man i just check steam workshop agreement and its even lower than i posted they optionally may pay 25% adjusted gross revenue, i think apple, microsoft, google, blackberry ect store you get a much better deal.

    further more value can create derived works based on your work and is under no obligation to pay you anything for those. only your original work!

    http://steamcommunity.com/workshop/workshoplegalagreement
  • 1 Hide
    back_by_demand , October 3, 2012 9:49 AM
    Well, seeing as Gabe has said he will never sell the company and he is taking remedial steps to have Steam on Linux, Windows will not likely move to walled garden for gamers. If anything Steam will be given a special status even if all other programs do get walled off
    ...
    40 million people that choose to pay for games rather than use cracked versions are also more likely to pay for legitimate versions of Windows
    ...
    Steam users outnumber the worldwide number of desktop Linux users by around 2.5 to 1, Microsoft would do well to keep people who are willing to spend money on legitimate software sweet or they run the risk of almost trebling a free alternative
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