1. TehSkull

    OP TehSkull Living the life

    Nov 29, 2009
    United States
    (While somewhat full of comedy, this is a legitimate guide.)

    Step 1: Make a Plan.

    Before the Steam sale arrives and mangles your already injured wallet and PayPal account, plan ahead.

    1a. What games do I want?
    Make a wishlist containing all of the games you want to buy.
    As Steam now emails you when a game on your wishlist goes on sale, you can stop yourself from looking at the overloaded front page of sales.
    Don't pick up Farming Simulator 2014 for 75% off. Why would you want that?
    Just keep checking your Inbox.

    1b. Can I run all the games in my wishlist?
    Unless you have 100% concrete plans to buy a better computer or upgrade your current computer within the next 6 months, you should check if your computer meets the specs for EVERY game on your wishlist.
    There's a great website that will automatically check your computer's specs and compare them to any game's required and recommended specs.
    If your computer does not meet the requirements and you don't plan on upgrading soon, do not buy the game.
    Steam Sales happen every 6 months, and prices will surely go down in that time.
    If you buy a game in this Steam Sale that you can't run that was 75% off $50, and next Steam Sale you have a great computer and the game is 75% off $40, you've paid $2.50 more than you needed to.

    1c. How much money do I have?
    Before you find yourself without gas money, food money, and a rainy day fund, set aside all the money that you need to survive real life.
    Separate the monies, but don't be fooled by the advantages of the Steam Wallet.
    If you put your money into your Steam Wallet, you can't get the money back out.
    Put it in your PayPal account's balance. That will keep you from tapping further into your bank account, and let you return any remaining funds to your bank account.

    Step 2: The Plan in Action

    Holy shih tzu, Batman, it's here! The moment you've been waiting for, the Steam Sale!

    Most games will be on sale from the moment the sale starts, while others are scheduled to be on sale later in the week, and you can't forget the Flash Sales.

    2a. I have a job. How can I enjoy the Steam sale?
    The wizards at Valve have done their best to make their store available everywhere.
    On your work computer and can't install Steam? Just load up the main steam website and log in.
    You can still buy your games just like from home.
    Constantly on the go, or have people who may creep your computer at work? There's an app for that.
    Grab the Steam app for your Android or iOS smartphone and enjoy the Steam sale from anywhere that has 3G internet access.

    2b. When should I buy a game?
    One of the biggest issues people have with the Steam Sale is buying their game at the wrong time.
    Knowing exactly how Steam Sales work ahead of time is one of the biggest keys to getting the best deal possible.
    You may receive an email in your inbox saying your favorite game is 33% off. Don't do it!
    You must grow patience and wait. Don't pay up until the game is 66% off or better.
    This will be the hardest task, but I assure you it can be done.

    2c. Hey! That game looks really good, and is super cheap. STOP!!
    You are stepping right into the trap.
    Another inch and you will be forever caught in the claws of the Steam Sale.
    Do your research. Check out some YouTube videos. Check the MetaCritic score.
    Don't lay down money on a game you think looks good and cheap until you know you're going to actually play it.
    You may as well be throwing money right out the window.

    2d. None of my wishlist games are on sale yet. What do I do?
    This is a common situation, for some.
    The trick is to keep voting in the Community Choice polls (even if you don't want any of the three games), and checking back after each flash sale deal ends.
    Do not fall into impulse purchases.
    Even if some or all of your favorite games never go on sale, do not buy things just to use up your whole Steam Sale allotment.
    Just because you can spend does not mean you should.

    Step 3: Enjoy the Games

    Congratulations! You've made it through, you didn't spend a dime more than you needed to.
    the_randomizer likes this.
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