To borrow a phrase from my teammates on PC Gamer's UK staff, sometimes browsing Steam can be a right ballache. You go to a game's store page and it thinks you want to watch a developer livestream, while the things you actually want to know about are elsewhere. You have to hop over to gg.deals or IsThereAnyDeal to make sure that game's not cheaper in another store, and check the PC Gaming Wiki for any other potential surprises. Heaven forbid you want to see what price a game is in another currency, or snort up all its DLC in one go rather than add it to your cart one at a time.
Back in the day it took a bunch of bookmarks and plug-ins like Enhanced Steam and Steam Inventory Helper to improve Valve's storefront. Now all that functionality is combined in a single browser extension called Augmented Steam, which is so essential I'm surprised more people don't know about it already. Someone installs it every time I mention it. Augmented Steam is the Deus Ex of browser extensions. Here's what it does.
Price comparison: Augmented Steam adds games' historical lowest price and current best price to their store page. Prices are sourced from over 40 shops including itch.io, GOG, Epic, and Fanatical, and you can remove shops from the list if you're not interested in them. If a game was ever in a Humble Bundle, Augmented Steam will let you know. It also shows regional price comparisons for different currencies, which can be customized. All of this info will be on your wishlist when you mouse over it too.
More useful info on store pages: By default, Steam's store pages link to a game's website, Facebook and Twitter, Discord server, and all that official stuff. Augmented Steam adds its rating in OpenCritic and Metacritic, current and peak playercounts from SteamCharts, duration from HowLongToBeat, plus links to its pages on SteamDB, the PC Gaming Wiki, gameplay videos on Twitch and YouTube, and more.
While nowadays Steam warns you about DRM and requirements for third-party launchers like the dreaded Ubisoft Connect, Augmented Steam remains a little more stringent in its warnings, which come in an attention-grabbing red box up top rather than being tucked away down the side. Plus, it still includes notices for Games For Windows Live and will tell you if a game's excluded from family sharing.
All this bonus data is customizable, so you can add links to ProtonDB if you're on Linux, or get rid of the widescreen certifications from WSGF, for instance. Augmented Steam connects user profiles to third-party sites as well, which is useful if you want to make sure someone is legit before trading with them by going directly to their page on SteamRep, SteamTrades, and the like.
Extra search filters and highlighting: Steam has made improvements to its search function over the years, with filters to narrow results by tags, a price slider, Steam Deck compatibility, and so on. Augmented Steam bumps up search's usefulness even more with filters for hiding Early Access games, anything that's already in your cart, and anything with a user review score below a chosen threshold. You can knock games with negative or even mixed ratings off the list entirely, or get more granular with a review score slider and a numerical review count range.
Even more helpfully, it color codes the results of your search. Games you own will be green and games on your wishlist blue, but you can personalize the colors and add highlights for games you have coupons, gift copies or guest passes for, as well as those in your IsThereAnyDeal collection and waitlist should you have them. The same color-coded highlights get used whenever Steam shows you a list of games, in a bundle for instance.
Better DLC browsing: Those highlights make looking through DLC easier because you can tell at a glance what you've already bought and what you haven't. Augmented Steam also offers tempting buttons to add all a game's unowned DLC to your cart at once, or all the DLC you've wishlisted. Next time there's a sale on Total War: Warhammer DLC, I'll be thankful for that.
Faster community market: Augmented Steam puts an instant sell button on anything you own that has a buy order on the marketplace. Great for when you just want to get rid of trading cards or other junk clogging your inventory as quickly as possible. It also shows the current lowest price for items you've made listings for in case you're more interested in playing the market, and adds more sorting options.
This is the one area where Augmented Steam could improve—it can take a while for the lowest prices to load and sometimes I have to refresh the page a couple of times to make it show the bottom of the list. It's better than having to get that information by clicking every worthless Steam emoticon and Team Fortress 2 case I own one at a time, though.
Skip age verification: Augmented Steam can't prevent Valve from forgetting my login details on the regular, but at least I don't need to tell it my birthday every single time I click on a game with Frequent Violence, Blood and Gore, Suggestive Themes, Strong Language, Use of Alcohol, or whatever else gets them flagged as not being appropriate for all ages. Make sure it knows you were born on January 1, 1900, and it'll remember forever.
What's more, go into Augmented Steam's options and you can disable that annoying YOU ARE LEAVING STEAM notice when you follow a link to an external site, and the confirmation when you remove items from your wishlist.
Other extremely minor stuff: Why do Final Fantasy 11 and 13 get a ® in their name when other Final Fantasy games don't? What makes you so special? If the inconsistent use of trademarks and copyright symbols in names bugs you, Augmented Steam has an option to hide them. It also has a Launch Random Game feature, which I'm as likely to use as I am to visit its Discord server, but it's there if you want it.
Just writing this article has made me aware of even more little things Augmented Steam can do, like forcing trailers into MP4 format and pinning profile backgrounds into place when you scroll down. If there's some small thing Steam does that drives you nuts, this extension probably has a way to change it.