Last year, Valve launched the Steam Game Festival in December alongside The Game Awards, allowing players to play and try out new games before they are released. It featured 14 titles that were mostly indie games and was the first instance of Steam doing their own digital festival. With the recent Coronavirus news, the cancellation of several gaming conventions like GDC and E3 2020, and the announcement of numerous digital conferences from Xbox and Ubisoft, the Steam Game Festival is returning this year for Spring.

Starting today (March 18th) from 10am PDT, or 5pm GMT, the Spring Steam Game Festival will offer Steam users a chance at playing the demos of over 40 new titles that were slated to be shown off at Indie MEGABOOTH, Day of the Devs, and The MIX at this year’s GDC. It will continue to run until March 23rd at 10am PDT / 5pm GMT.

Steam users will have to go onto the official Spring Steam Game Festival page and download the demos in order to start playing them.

This may very well be the start of a new way to experience gaming conventions. Gone are the days waiting for 4 hours in a queue just to play 20 minutes of the new Call of Duty game. No more flying hundreds of miles to conventions in a city that you’ve never been before/speak the native language. Now you can experience them in the comfort of your own home. My question is: is that a good thing? Are we losing something in the social community of gamers? Or does this open up new experiences and new communities for gamers online?

Either way, with the recent coronavirus panic causing most people to self-isolate, internet service providers have seen a massive surge in usage. If hundreds of players worldwide decide to download lots of these demos, this may cause an issue where ISP’s will have to slow down download speeds. Unfortunately, we’ll just have to wait and see.

What do you think of the Spring Steam Game Festival? Is it a good thing? Is this the future of experiencing gaming conventions? Let us know your thoughts!