Valve put out a blog post today detailing what its digital game store Steam went through in 2018, from all of the new system overhauls that were shipped to how the community has continued to evolve, among other things. However, the blog post also went onto give a sneak peek at some of the new Steam features the company has planned for 2019.
Jumping straight into it, the main Steam client will be getting a rework this year, and it's being built using the same technologies that were used in the Steam Chat overhaul from last year. A new recommendation system to let players discover games more easily is also planned, which will be using machine-learning algorithms to accomplish this task.
A new Steam Chat app was also confirmed for mobile devices. It seems this will be making use of the PC client's modern chat design, but it's unclear why will this be a new app and won't be an update to the current Steam mobile app. The company's desire to expand Steam officially into China in 2019 was also a point, as its partnership with Perfect World continues.
Here are the rest of the features that Valve listed in its plans in addition to those mentioned above:
- New Events System: We're upgrading the events system in the Steam Community, enabling you to highlight interesting activities in your games like tournaments, streams, or weekly challenges.
- Steam TV: We're working on expanding Steam TV beyond just broadcasting specific tournaments and special events, in order to support all games.
- Steam Trust: The technology behind Trusted Matchmaking on CS:GO is getting an upgrade and will become a full Steam feature that will be available to all games. This means you'll have more information that you can use to help determine how likely a player is a cheater or not.
- Steam PC Cafe Program: We are going to officially ship a new PC Cafe Program so that players can have a good experience using Steam in hundreds of thousands of PC Cafes Worldwide.
Those who are interested in reading the full blog post can head over here. With new contenders like the Epic Games Store launching and shaking up the digital store space recently, it certainly looks like Valve will have some tough competition in the gaming arena going forward. We will have to wait and see how all these stores fare in 2019.
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