This must simply not have been my weekend, or maybe my luck just ran out, as right when everything seemed to come together nicely my plans got stopped dead in their tracks. Here’s what happened. I just finished installing my new PC during the weekend and outfitted it with a new motherboard sporting two GeForce 6800 Ultra graphic cards in SLI and AMD’s Athlon 64 FX55 processor. Obviously I couldn’t wait to try it out with some of the games that have piled up on my desk over the past few months. I grabbed that second HalfLife 2 voucher I had especially been saving for this occasion and scratched off the protective layer to reveal the activation key and proceeded to install the Steam client on my new PC. Or at least that was the plan, I got as far as installing the client, logging in or getting any kind of response from their servers was another story though.
Of course that didn’t stop me, as I still have my old PC here, which already has a copy of HalfLife 2 installed which I bought online just prior to the launch of the game. Copying the game off of there and installing it on the new PC would work right? After making a backup of the game to DVD using the built in Steam backup utility and installing that on the new PC I was ready to start playing. Well, apparantly the Steam client didn’t agree with me, as it simply asked me to login to my Steam account. Puzzled I stared at the screen, I double-checked whether the game was setup for offline play on my old PC prior to making the backup, so why does it need to login to my account if I just backup the game content? Aggravated I took it a step further and simply copied the whole Steam program folder from my old PC to the new one, hoping that that would solve the problem. Well it didn’t. So as a last resort I took my old PC apart, and stuck the old harddisk into the new machine and proceeded to reinstall all the drivers and applications so everything would work as intended.
It did, well at least the system did, but the Steam client again wouldn’t budge. Mumbling words and phrases I will not bother to type up here I proceeded to put the old PC back together again as my reasoning was there must’ve been something I missed, maybe a Windows register key that enables the Steam client to work in offline mode? So I powered it back up to take another look at it, only to be greeted by the ‘login to your Steam account to be able to play this game’ message. I’m quite sure the neighbors overheard me loudly expressing foul synonyms that describe Gabe Newell’s fat ass and his company and I’m quite sure I could’ve filled a few pages with ‘m. But anyway I gave up on playing HalfLife 2 this weekend, only to be automatically logged in to the Steam network this Monday morning just when I was about to start work. Great! I had time this weekend, got work to do today, thanks Gabe, thanks Valve, you suck, big time! Maybe next time I'll just use that other content delivery system, called p2p, and rid myself of this problem all together, as I'm surely not getting my money's worth here.