Valve cracks down on bootleg games, removing shovelware from Steam

Valve has just banned another mass of bootleg games on Steam, many of which were shovelware titles with stolen assets or little to no content.

The blue and white Stean logo

Steam has seen more than its fair share of bootleg games and shovelware, as is to be expected with a platform so large. Valve responds to such issues quite promptly, banning and removing any low-effort PC games from Steam that are obviously cash grabs with stolen assets or otherwise scams. The company also subsequently bans many of the games’ developers to ensure that Steam stays clear of more random influxes of shovelware. Just today, Valve shut down almost 100 asset-flipped and bootleg games in one of Steam’s biggest ban waves yet.

No shovelware was safe, with everything from games titled “Eat beans” to “MathGame” removed from the platform. Many of these were simple games with little to no effort applied during development as they contained stolen assets and carried popular search terms within their titles so as to grab attention from players. The massive ban hammer dropped just after the Steam ban on AI assets (not a 100% ban but rather one focused on copyright concerns) as Valve looks to clean its storefront of questionable games.

An archived screenshot of the Degenerate Souls Steam page

This isn’t to say that every game was taken down from Steam due to assets or for the same reasons at all, with a few standing out as obvious copyright issues. From “Flappy Bird” to “3D Pacman,” there is no shortage of games trying to pass as official spin-offs of popular titles. And who could forget “Degenerate Souls,” one of the best games like Dark Souls to be taken off of Steam? You can check out the full details tracked by SteamDB on Discord here if you want a more in-depth look at which games were axed by Valve.

If you love PC games as much as we do, then you should check out some of the Steam Summer Sale deals. Alternatively, browse through a few of our favorite free PC games for fun gameplay experiences that are not riddled with stolen assets.