Valve has made some changes to gifting on Steam

Giving should be a pleasant, life-affirming experience. It's one of the qualities that separates humankind from beasts. Only, sometimes giving isn't very straightforward. Under circumstances where it's not straightforward, the giver can turn into a beast or, in worst case scenarios, start burning down buildings. That's science for you.

Valve presumably doesn't want its users to turn into beasts or start burning down buildings, so the company has made some changes to how gifting works on Steam. Now, instead of receiving an e-mail from the gifter, which can be redeemed into your inventory, it's a more direct exchange. 

"No more worrying if a Gift to E-mail or Gift to Inventory is going to work for a friend," the update reads, "gifts sent through the new system will always work on the receiver's account. When there is a large difference in pricing between countries, gifting won't be available and you'll know before purchase."

Meanwhile, if someone declines your gift for whatever reason it won't just sit forever in your inventory: you'll be able to get the money back. Gift scheduling is now "even more" straightforward too, and you're able to schedule gifts to send months in advance.

The full blog post is over here, but that's just about the whole of it. It seems Steam is on a bit of a houseworking blitz, following yesterday's release of data regarding its customer service performance.

Shaun Prescott

Shaun Prescott is the Australian editor of PC Gamer. With over ten years experience covering the games industry, his work has appeared on GamesRadar+, TechRadar, The Guardian, PLAY Magazine, the Sydney Morning Herald, and more. Specific interests include indie games, obscure Metroidvanias, speedrunning, experimental games and FPSs. He thinks Lulu by Metallica and Lou Reed is an all-time classic that will receive its due critical reappraisal one day.