from skins to a Half-Life game hidden on your PC

If you play on PC it is practically a certainty that at some point you have used Steam. Valve’s platform is practically a stronghold for the platform and, although there are many more options now than ever before, the main purchase platform on PC. And even with this in mind, there are many users who don’t know many functions at your reach.

Without a doubt, Steam is not a particularly complicated platform to use, or one that hides functions most of the time, but if you have been using Valve’s prodigal son for a while and have asked yourself “I think I can get more out of” At some point, we invite you to browse this text to see if we discover any hidden Steam tricks for you.

Organize your library into collections

Those who have recently started using Steam may not encounter this problem, but for those who spend more time on the platform and they have swelled their library well, surely browsing it is not as comfortable as we would like. Yes, we have tools like “show only…” or the search bar, but Steam offers us much more powerful tools to find our favorite video games.

collections

Some tools organize your collections automatically

Among all of them, the use of “Collections” is one of the most useful. Through them we can label our titles with custom categories, and display them in an orderly manner without more elements in between. To create and assign collections we just have to:

  1. Open the Steam app or web.
  2. Go to the “Games and Software” tab in our Library.
  3. Right click on the video game that we want to add to a collection.
  4. Select “Add to” within the actions menu.
  5. Assign a collection to it, or make a new one.

Additionally, we can create dynamic collections, which use Steam tags to set automatic collections, so that we don’t even have to work with them. We can even use some add on like Depressurizer to organize the collections for us.

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Mentors who help you discover games

With more than 50,000 downloadable games available on the platform, and dozens of new additions every week, taking into account all the titles on the platform is an almost impossible task for a single person. The platform has tools such as user reviews, but, if we are to get rid of others, what better way to do it than to do it from someone who we know their criteria.

Mentors

This is where the figure comes in. Steam “Mentors”: users who make available to everyone their activity within the platform, their reviews, notes, information, and instructions. Mentors’ recommendations will show up in your recommendations, their notes will be highlighted when you browse a game they’ve reviewed, and they’ll generally guide you a bit through all the slew of games. To choose a mentor, you must:

  1. Open the Steam app or web.
  2. Go to the left sidebar of the Steam Store and choose “Mentors”.
  3. Select “Find More Mentors” or browse the menu to see what’s new.
  4. Press “Follow” on the profiles that you like the most, or search for those that interest you.

If you do not know who to choose, we recommend that you observe the “recommendations” tab within the search section for Steam mentors, from there, observe the ones that more people follow and take a look at their activity. An inactive mentor isn’t helpful, and one a bit “fair” with the titles he deals with isn’t either.

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Backups on external hard drives

Unlike other platforms, on PC we enjoy certain degree of freedom when it comes to managing the storage of our device, something that our community also values ​​with a certain zeal, for all that this implies, something that the guys at Valve know very well.

Properties

Because of this, Steam has more tools and utilities than you can imagine to manage our library internally, and many of these options can be found under the “Properties” category of our installed games. To access it we just have to:

  1. Within Steam, go to our Library.
  2. Right click on any video game that we have installed.
  3. Select “Properties…” in the options menu that is displayed.

Once there, we can do all kinds of actions. One of the most useful is create backups of our titles to an external drive, perfect for those who do not have a fast connection, or other management options, such as moving the installation folder of our video games.

External storage to play.  A better option than you imagine

Watch or stream video games on Steam

We all know platforms like Twitch or YouTube for their reach and large number of users, content creators, and communities associated with them. Steam also enjoys one of the larger communities on PC, and also has its own tools to broadcast and watch other players live.

rebroadcasts

Surely from time to time you have found yourself on the store page with this function, which Valve values ​​as a “window” for those players who want to know what a moving title is like without leaving Steam. To do it ourselves we just have to:

  1. Open the Steam app
  2. Start the title that we want to broadcast on the platform.
  3. Press shift + Tabulator to open the Steam game menu.
  4. Select “Parameters” in the bottom bar of the games menu.
  5. Open retransmission, previously configuring the quality or parameters.

Alternatively, we can watch other’s broadcasts from the Community tab, selecting “Broadcasts” in the dropdown that opens when you hover the mouse over it. As we have said, it is an easy way to watch games that interest us on the move.

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Steam also has community skins

A popular option, but still unknown to many players, is Steam’s ability to change skins through the skins developed by the community. Through them, we can make the application drastically change its appearance and even gain some extra functionality or accessibility.

Skin

In order to carry out this process, The first thing is to get one of these aspects for Valve’s platform, there are many around the internet, but one I particularly like is DomDrapper’s Metro “theme”, based on the philosophy of Microsoft’s metro interface. Once the aspect is downloaded, we must:

  1. Download our Skin favorite from your website.
  2. Move to the Steam installation path (usually “C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam”).
  3. If not created, make the “skins” folder in the Steam directory.
  4. Place the download folder (unzipped) in the Skins folder.
  5. Open Steam and select “Parameters” on the toolbar.
  6. Move to “Interface” within Parameters.
  7. Select our skin in the dropdown.
  8. Restart the app.

From desktop to TV or mobile with Remote Play

Many gamers are aware of Steam’s “Families” library sharing feature. A function that allows us take advantage of a single library in several teams, perfect for those relatives who do not share a roof with us. Technically, we can use that same function in our own home to play locally, but that means downloading the same title twice on two different computers, with all that that implies.

To solve this type of situation, especially if we do not have a secondary computer, or said computer is much worse than our main PC, it is best to use the “Remote Play” function of Steam, regardless of the platform in which we play or What team do we do it on? To use it, we just have to:

  1. Enter the Steam application.
  2. Open the “Parameters” dropdown on the toolbar.
  3. Select “Remote Play” and activate it in the checkbox.

From this point, any device connected to our same IP will have at its disposal all the titles installed on the main one, which will run on it to enjoy them remotely. If the devices are not connected to the same network we will have to make use of Steam Link.

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Secret games in your Steam library

To finish this first approach to the most unpublished functions of Steam, we are going to close with a fact that few users knowand it is that Steam has hidden games in addition to those that we can buy in the store.

There is a bit of everything in this section and I urge you to take a look at them on the internet, but, among all of them, the one I like the most is Codename Gordon, a 2D title created by Nuclearvision Entertainment and inspired by some of the most mythical levels of the first two titles in the saga, all with the approval of Valve.

Cz00

Installing Codename Gordon is easy if you know how, you need a specific installation link (“steam://install/92”) and open said link from your browser with the Steam application, when opened, select Steam as the default application for opening. From there, we will have it in our library in a jiffy.