Steam Main Window The day I purchased AudioSurf was the first day that I even saw Steam, sure I had heard lots of people talk about it, many people praising its loveliness and many more complaining that it was evil.

I had never had the need to install it, I owned Half Life (never finished it) and had played a bit of Counter Strike 1.6 in my time, but I had never felt the need to take it any further and buy Half Life 2.

While I was downloading AudioSurf, I noticed that there was 9 hours remaining of a free trial of Team Fortress 2 so I set that to download while I messed about else where. Now, I think Team Fortress is great, fun for a quick session blatting away at a couple of foes, that wasn’t what hooked me onto Steam, no it was the ease of it all.

I simply double clicked “Team Fortress” in My Games and it told me about the offer and guided me through downloading it (which was pressing “next” three times), when it was finished downloading I double clicked it again and it launched Team Fortress. I have been dreaming of software like this for years, so simple yet so effective.

Steam has a huge library of games, including some great packs such as The Orange Box, there is also a nifty “gift” system which allows you to pass on games you have two copies of, for example if you bought Half Life 2, then The Orange Box you would have two copies of Half Life 2 one of which you can pass on to a friend.

In summary, I think Valve has done a top job on Steam, without falling into the DRM traps that so many publishers seem to be dropping themselves into. I will post back when I have played the games a bit more, for the time being pleased with my discovery.