You can turn off Steam's annoying achievement notification sound

The Steam logo
(Image credit: Valve)

You've saved Skyrim from Alduin the World-Eater at last. Surrounded by the souls of Sovngarde's mightiest heroes, you watch his bones burn bright as the dawn, then fall away to ash. What sound accompanies this event? "Blink blink blonk!" Steam would like you to know you've just unlocked the Dragonslayer achievement, which it does by loudly playing a cheerily rinky-dink sound effect.

While Steam's Big Picture Mode has had an achievement notification sound for a minute, as Steam Deck owners know full well, Desktop Mode remained classily silent when that little rectangle appeared in the corner of your screen. Now it makes a noise for every achievement, and when a game finishes downloading, and I hate it.

Fortunately, you can turn the noise off. As of an update earlier this month, Valve has "Added a toggle in notification settings to turn on/off sounds for non-critical notifications." All you have to do is go to Steam > Settings > Notifications and then hit that "Play a sound when a notification toast is displayed" toggle. Learning these notifications are called "toasts" has only made me hate them more, by the way. 

Jody Macgregor
Weekend/AU Editor

Jody's first computer was a Commodore 64, so he remembers having to use a code wheel to play Pool of Radiance. A former music journalist who interviewed everyone from Giorgio Moroder to Trent Reznor, Jody also co-hosted Australia's first radio show about videogames, Zed Games. He's written for Rock Paper Shotgun, The Big Issue, GamesRadar, Zam, Glixel, Five Out of Ten Magazine, and, whose cheques with the bunny logo made for fun conversations at the bank. Jody's first article for PC Gamer was about the audio of Alien Isolation, published in 2015, and since then he's written about why Silent Hill belongs on PC, why Recettear: An Item Shop's Tale is the best fantasy shopkeeper tycoon game, and how weird Lost Ark can get. Jody edited PC Gamer Indie from 2017 to 2018, and he eventually lived up to his promise to play every Warhammer videogame.