Steam guides are a useless mess of jokes, say PC gaming fans

Steam guides are a handy user-created feature on the PC gaming platform, but users say that Steam Points awards have led to more useless joke guide entries

Steam guides a joke - Team Fortress 2's BLU Spy laughing maniacally

Getting stuck in games is no fun, and Steam guides have long been a handy tool for everything from bug workarounds to collectible hunting. While we’d of course encourage you to come to PCGamesN for everything from Fortnite Kamehameha locations to Minecraft enchantments, the user-created guides integrated into the Steam Community page are a quickly accessible tool that can often prove very helpful in a pinch. However, many users say that the feature is now plagued with joke entries and people attempting to farm awards for Steam Points.

Steam Points can be earned by purchasing games, add-ons, and other related content through the Steam store. You can use them to buy various items in the Steam Points shop – these are mostly cosmetics that can be used to customise your Steam profile page and avatar, as well as chat effects and emoticons that you can use while talking to other users on Steam. Steam Points can be given to other players as ‘awards’ – this is typically done as thanks for a helpful guide or review.

Steam Points are also often handed out for funny content. As such, users say that the Steam guides section is now full to bursting with a plethora of joke guides hoping to nab some Steam Points awards from other players. From Counter-Strike: GO guides mocking Valve’s anti-cheat service entitled ‘How does VAC work’ (the body text reading ‘it doesn’t’) to numerous ‘How to jump/walk/shoot’ entries that simply list the appropriate button to press, often in a slightly over-elaborate manner, the Steam guides section is now a swamp of entries that aren’t actually useful, even when they are amusing.

A thread on the Steam subreddit titled ‘Steam guides then vs now – I want to go back’ highlighted this issue, and quickly garnered traction among the community. Many users lament the flood of spam entries, saying they miss the days where guide content was easy to find. In theory, the best guides for a game should still be upvoted – but some users in the thread say they have been put off posting or browsing guides on Steam because the user experience is so poor nowadays.

Some comments also note a similar problem faced by Steam reviews. One user claims that “Valve encouraged too much starting with the ‘Funny’ button on Steam reviews,” suggesting that the option to reward players for humorous ‘reviews’ has also caused a level of tomfoolery that affects PC gamers’ ability to find accurate reviews on given products.

Hopefully Valve will take steps to help tidy up the section. In the meantime, if you do want some more useful PC game guides, we’ve got plenty for you – whether you’re looking for CS:GO console commands, a guide to the best GTA RP servers and how to join them, everything you need to know about the Tower of Fantasy 1.5 update, or even the best Sims 4 mods to install in 2022. We’ll even point you towards the best free games on PC, so you can check out even more great stuff without dropping any money.