I guess as a kind of break of my indefinite hiatus from this website, I should post something informative and relatable to a software marketplace that has grown on me over the years, like some sort of helpful tumor.
I remember Steam in its early days, when updates usually meant waiting an hour or two to finish a 'hefty' 70MB on a dial-up connection. I also distinctly remember seeing the progress bar DECREASE instead of the opposite(which it should have been doing), more than once. It was a troublesome kind of game platform at the time, but it was also your best bet at a fair game of Counterstrike when they installed Punkbuster.
It's many years later, and I'm still using Steam. I doubt many programs from the early oughts are still in circulation today in nearly the same format as they were when they started. Steam has its fair share of problems (Cloud Synching being one of them), but overall I find the whole thing quite cathartic to going to a store to find out that they have only sold out a game. Being said, Steam's best used when you have a good net connection, as all of your content is downloaded, more or less. If you have DSL, expect to wait upwards of 1 full day(24 hours), to download any triple-A game. Personally I have patience, so it doesn't bother me too much(I once downloaded the MST3k archives, a whopping 142gb, on DSL. It took a little over 1 month of constant connection).
I feel I should also mention that the amount of independent games on Steam is almost sickening, but in a good way. I would highly suggest Organ Trail, Cart Life, and Monster Loves You!. The last one is sort of like a dating sim game, so it might not be for everyone. Besides those titles, Super Meat Boy and Limbo are go-to favorites, as is the 'grandfather of indie games', Braid.
Overall, I've had a pretty positive experience with Steam, and I've grown with it over the years. To be honest, the feelings I have towards it are strangely alien- you don't feel the same kind of nostalgia you'd get if it was a console-based idea. It feels more like you're part of an evolving community and database, and less like you just spent 700 dollars on a fancy Blu-Ray player, something you wiggle a controller at, or a media powerhouse. It feels more cohesive than that, I guess, and it's brought PC gaming into the mainstream, for sure.
Personally, I hope it keeps evolving as it is and doesn't make a break for a 'system'- the part I like about Steam is the capability for even low-end users to play most games via adjusting their resolution and whatnot. I also personally enjoy viewing things in what could be considered 'true' resolution, or basically making everything hyper-pretty. If we get a console, there would be a leveling off of what the graphics would be, and as stated, I like to jack everything up to 11 in terms of detail. It may be why I don't play Xbox or PS3 as much.
Anyways, I guess that's my hiatus-breaking rant. Whee!
Reality swirled in a wholly blue manner, revealing absolutely nothing of merit. Things flashed madly in and out of existence like some entirely other sort of phenomena. On a whim, Kurt Vonnegut imploded, taking a sizeable hunk of Massachusetts with him. However, seeing as Massachusetts wasn't entirely sure it existed, the chunk wasn't all that big.