At the start of the 2014 Summer Sale began the Steam Summer Adventure, but the strange outcome of the first five days have forced Steam’s hand into a rule change. The goal of the game is to have your team craft the most badges per day in order to have 30 participants be randomly selected to receive three games off of their Steam wishlist for free. Players were assigned teams at random to be sure that each team had a fair amount of members. But shortly after each new day began, a single team would leap ahead of the other four, which were always contending on an equal level.
Equally as peculiar was that each team seemed to be evenly distributing the daily wins. By the end of Day 5, each team had won exactly once.
Gamers flocked to the Steam Community to proclaim the pre-ordained winners of the game, complain about how the game is rigged, or accuse Valve of just trying to get users more involved with the crafting system and marketplace. However, Kotaku’s TMI points out another, possibly even more bizarre explanation: teamwork among denizens of the internet?
Subreddit upon subreddit has been spawned in order for teams to communicate and organize. As of writing, the top post on /r/SteamTeamBlue is a guide urging participants to work together so that each team would have equal chance of winning free games. While it’s unlikely that any singular holdout on the internet was responsible for the Summer Adventure daily outcome, perhaps a little spark is all that’s needed. Personally, the only badges I’d crafted were on the day that my team was winning. If your team has a lead, it makes more sense to craft your badges to exaggerate the lead than to try and make that ground back. Perhaps a majority of Steam users have the same mentality.
Regardless, Steam has now changed the rules to make the fight a little more interesting.
Players will now have a chance to win free games, even if their team is not in first place. The first place prize remains unchanged, but second and third now will have a lesser pool of users receive fewer free games. Regardless of what was causing the daily spikes in teams’ performance, Steam’s thrown a wrench in it now and it’s the free-for-all it was (seemingly) meant to be.