As many of you are likely aware, this year’s Steam Summer Sale is well and upon us. However, if you, like me, are new to Steam and the craziness of their bi-annual sales, it can be pretty overwhelming. How do you know you’re getting the best deal? And how do you find the games that are right for you?
Since Rick and I are both new to this we spent some time polling our friends for their advice, which I’m sharing with you now in this handy-dandy guide to surviving a Steam Summer Sale.
Step 1: Set a Budget
Yes, I realize part of the fun of a Steam sale is watching those impulse purchases rack up. But for those of us who’d like to be able to get out of the house a bit this summer, a budget probably isn’t a terrible idea. Set it for the entirety of the sale, for example, we’ve decided that between the two of us we can get $50 worth of games this year. Considering that many games are available in the $2.49 – $4.99 range, you can still get a tonne of games, but having a budget will also force you to prioritize and hopefully prevent the buying of games you know you will never play just because it is a deal. Now the challenge becomes getting the best deals on what we want, which is where the rest of these tips come in.
Step 2: Make a Wishlist
This might seem like a bit of a noob tip, but I have a feeling there are probably more than a few of you who don’t have a wishlist attached to your Steam account yet. While it might feel like backdoor bragging or fishing for gifts, the real advantage of having a wishlist is that Steam will actually send you an email when something on your list goes on sale. No checking-in every day and hunting through the deals. They will tell you when that game you want is 75% off.
Step 3: Pay Attention to Social Media
Any PC gamer worth their salt is watching the Steam Store with bated breath and many of them will tweet or share particularly good deals. Searching Twitter with the hashtag #steamsale will usually yield good results.
Step 4: Know your deals
The best deals to be had are in the Flash Sales and the Daily Deals. Daily Deals happen, as they say, every day. Flash Sales happen every 8 hours and represent your absolute best values, you’ll probably want to check the Steam Store in the morning, when you get home from work, and then one more time before you hit the sack. There’s also the Community’s Choice deals which are voted on by Steam members, so you have a shot at personally ensuring the game you want is available at the price you want.
Step 5: Be Patient
Sure, 50% off Far Cry 3 Blood Dragon might seem like a good deal. But two days later the price could go down to 75% off. If none of your games appear in either of these discount categories, go ahead and buy it. But wait until the last day of the sale if you can.
Hope this was helpful. What are your favourite tips for surviving a Steam Sale?