Steam starts dropping Mysterious Cards, likely pointing to incoming Summer Sale
Steam cares not for your E3, mortals. Steam cares only for financial supplication. Like a vengeful, twisted god, it can only be sated by the monetary sacrifice of PC gamers. This fervent display is none more evident than during their sale events—in which we cheer, shriek, and commit terrible acts of economic undoing, all in the name of placating an indifferent grey distribution network. It's a pretty good time.
So when's the next one happening? All signs point to 'soon'. The latest hint comes in the form of set of Mysterious Cards that have appeared on the Steam Marketplace. No, really. In addition to being mysterious cards, they're also called Mysterious Cards. Given Steam's predilection for running strange events during their biggest sales, it's a strong sign that the discounts will soon be flowing.
For the last couple of years, the Summer Sale has started mid-July. This year, I don't think we'll be waiting quite so long. A few weeks ago, Reddit intercepted a developer thread stating the discount deadline as June 13. In a similar leak, last year's Winter Sale deadline was revealed as November 15. Twelve days later, the sale began.
That points to this year's Summer Sale happening late-June. It would make sense, because The International has this year been brought forward to June 18. By bringing the Summer Sale forward, Valve creates some breathing room around two of their biggest community events.
My guess would be that the sale will start sometime during the week of June 23. But then, I've been wrong before.