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Steam Is Now Offering Refunds On Games For Any Reason

by Mike Futter on Jun 02, 2015 at 08:03 AM

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Valve has instituted a major change to Steam's refund policy today, setting new guidelines for when it will reimburse dissatisfied players. Now, if you have owned a game for fewer than 14 days and played less than two hours, you are eligible for a full refund.

It seems like Valve has thought of nearly every possible scenario, detailing a variety of situations on its new refund page. If you've purchased DLC, you have 14 days to get a refund, provided you've played less than two hours since the purchase. In-game purchases for Valve games (like Team Fortress 2) have a 48-hour window and, of course, you can't have consumed, modified, or given it to someone.

If you've pre-purchased a game in advance of its release, you can request a refund at any point. After its release, you are subject to the fourteen-day/two-hour window. 

There are no refunds on movies or gifts that have been redeemed by the recipient. Also, if you've gotten yourself banned from a game by the Valve Anti-Cheat system, you've forfeited your right to a refund.

Don't go overboard, though. Valve reserves the right to revoke this privilege.

"Refunds are designed to remove the risk from purchasing titles on Steam—not as a way to get free games," Valve writes. "If it appears to us that you are abusing refunds, we may stop offering them to you. We do not consider it abuse to request a refund on a title that was purchased just before a sale and then immediately rebuying that title for the sale price."

[Source: Valve]


Our Take
That final point, about using refunds as a safety net before sales is quite generous. You still need to be within the fourteen-day/two-hour window, but it's more protection than we've had in the past. 

Valve has been good about offering refunds for games that have been deemed overwhelmingly broken. This step makes it that much safer to purchase using the platform.