Team fortress 2 validating steam cache files 100

Once the software is downloaded and installed, the user must then authenticate through Steam to de-encrypt the executable files to play the game.

Steam was an optional component for all other games.80,000–300,000 gamers tested the system when it was in its beta period.The software provides a freely available application programming interface (API) called Steamworks, which developers can use to integrate many of Steam's functions into their products, including networking, matchmaking, in-game achievements, micro-transactions, and support for user-created content through Steam Workshop.Though initially developed for use on Microsoft Windows operating systems, versions for OS X and Linux were later released.Valve decided to create a platform that would update games automatically and implement stronger anti-piracy and anti-cheat measures.

Through user polls at the time of its announcement in 2002, Valve also recognized that at least 75% of their users had access to high-speed Internet connections, which would only grow with planned Internet expansion in the following years, and recognized that they could deliver game content faster to players than through retail channels.Mobile apps with connected functionality with the main software were later released for i OS, Android, and Windows Phone devices in the 2010s.The Steam platform is considered to be the largest digital distribution platform for PC gaming, and was estimated by Screen Digest to have 75% of the market space in October 2013.Valve's Half-Life 2 was the first game to require installation of the Steam client to play, even for retail copies.This decision was met with concerns about software ownership, software requirements, and issues with overloaded servers demonstrated previously by the Counter-Strike rollout.Initially, Valve was required to be the publisher for these titles since they had sole access to the Steam's database and engine, but with the introduction of the Steamworks software development kit (SDK) in May 2008, anyone could potentially become a publisher to Steam, outside of Valve's involvement to curate titles on the service.