Valve, the owner of the cloud gaming platform Steam, has announced plans for a new Family Sharing program, that’ll allow users to share their entire games library with 10 additional devices.
The feature will allow gamers to lend their digital libraries to any of their friends and family, providing only one person is accessing the library at any one time.
If users see that a family member or friend has installed a game
they also want to play, they can send a request to the lender to
authorise their computer. Once the owner of the game has signed off on
the request, that entire library of steam games will be available to
access, download and play on that machine.
The person borrowing the game will be able to earn their own
achievements and save their own progress in the cloud on their own
device. There are few restrictions with the program, which users can
request Beta access to right now.
If owners of the game wish to play their own game, the
lender will be given a few minutes to save their game and quit, or
purchase the game themselves to continue.
The feature practically mirrors the Family Sharing scheme Microsoft had in mind for the Xbox One before it fell victim to the infamous policy changes relating to DRM restrictions.
Until that time, it seems Steam has simply taken perfectly good Microsoft’s plan and put it into action. It’ll be interesting to see whether Microsoft has a response.