It's been joked about for years that Steam is a game in and of itself-- much like Pokemon, you gotta catch em all. They had little contests around the major sales that helped support this claim, but now that's being kicked up a notch.

Currently in beta, Steam Trading Cards are virtual cards you earn while playing Steam games. Once you collect a set, you can turn them into a profile badge (like the "Pillar of the Community" badge from one of last year's sales) that will get you virtual items and XP toward your Steam level. Leveling up earns you other virtual items. Also, you can win coupons for other games, which is what's driving my interest.

It looks interesting. Steam is finally implementing something like a gamerscore but with more involvement.

What do you think?

jdodson   Admin wrote on 05/16/2013 at 01:02am

I think this is pretty neat. At some point hopefully you can play a game with these?

vdogmr25 wrote on 05/16/2013 at 01:39am

I'm not too big on the idea of a gamerscore. I generally don't care either way, but the ability to turn that into coupons or in-game items now and then actually makes me willing to work for these a bit.

scrypt   Supporter wrote on 05/16/2013 at 03:28pm

This is something along the lines of what I thought Microsoft was initially going to do with their Gamerscore system. My local friends are very much completionists, though they aren't on Steam much, or at all. In either case, I don't think this would be something that would attract them, or compel them to play more. It seems a definite progression toward their living room experience, and if someone was to play toward 'leveling up' their profile, why not play on the system that gives you something for that, rather than just a number?

I think it's a cool idea, but will have to spend some time with it.
(just updated my Steam with a beta token/invite thingy. Nice that they assign a level based on what you've already accomplished, so you don't have to start from scratch. About to jump into Team Fortress 2 to see if any magic happens...)

scrypt   Supporter wrote on 05/21/2013 at 04:46am

Okay, I've collected a few cards in the games that are available for collecting. Traded, and purchased from the Steam Market, some cards that I needed to complete a set... The whole system seems pretty damn cool. Play the games, and cards "drop" into your inventory while you are playing, up to a certain limit. Trade extras that you have, or sell on the Steam Market. When you have collected enough to have a set, you push a button to craft a badge for that card set. This crafting unlocks other items, such as graphic backdrops for your Steam profile, chat emoticons, even coupons for discounts on Steam games. I don't know if this will show up properly, but I'm linking a copy of my profile here, as a preview (check the "Favorite Group" unlock!):

Very interested to see what else they do with this. If (when) other developers jump on board with cards for their games, it's going to explode. So far, I'm impressed.

jdodson   Admin wrote on 05/21/2013 at 06:37am

Awesome scrypt, what games does it drop cards for to start? Half-Life and Portal 2 only?

scrypt   Supporter wrote on 05/21/2013 at 07:25am

Half Life 2, Portal 2, Counter Strike:GO, Team Fortress 2 and Don't Starve. For now, at least.

jdodson   Admin wrote on 05/21/2013 at 03:02pm

Don't Starve huh? That may accelerate my acquisition of that one...

Travis   Admin   Post Author wrote on 05/21/2013 at 05:32pm

Don't Starve is interesting. It's a roguelike-like survival world-building game.

jdodson   Admin wrote on 05/21/2013 at 06:48pm

Yeah, I played it on a friends computer, it really is fun.

Azurephile   Super Member wrote on 01/25/2014 at 05:16am

It is interesting. I'm probably a bit of a newb when it comes to Steam as I only have two games, Portal and Terraria. Guess how much I paid for both games.....that's right $0. I got Portal when I found out it was free. I spent 3 hours on it, I think, that's it. Terraria on the other hand, well I spent 159 hours on. It was interesting once I started playing Terraria that I noticed I had earn some of these cards based on Terraria. I may have but a few and it doesn't seem like I've earned any since. I'm really not sure what they're for, but it is interesting.

Travis   Admin   Post Author wrote on 01/25/2014 at 02:31pm

How did you manage to only spend 3 hours on Portal?

jdodson   Admin wrote on 01/25/2014 at 04:04pm

I think the game can be completed in three hours. That said, my first play through was much more than that.

Azurephile   Super Member wrote on 01/25/2014 at 10:06pm

Hahaha, Travis, probably because I got so frustrated with it. Sometimes puzzle games make me feel so stupid.

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