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I made this!

Because I am a monkey! A stupid, stupid monkey!

For those of you who don’t game (which I assume is most of you), Steam is a gaming application that allows you to buy, store and play games. I’ve posted about it before. I didn’t like the idea when I was first forced to join (it was the only way to purchase HalfLife2), but then I had a catastrophic computer failure and…Steam quietly downloaded all my old games onto the new computer.

Okay, I still don’t like the idea of cloud computing, but that there was pretty neat. I admit it.

Then Steam introduced the concept of achievements. I don’t know if they invented the idea, but it means if you do certain non-obvious things in a game — kill a certain number of foes by using your gravity gun to fling toilets at them, for example — you ‘unlock’ an ‘achievement.’ Which is a little icon. Which other people can see if you look at your profile.

Bear with me. It hasn’t gotten as losery as it gets yet.

Then they introduced the idea of virtual trading cards. You get these things mostly by playing games. They just appear in your inventory after a certain amount of gameplay, I think. Which made everybody (well, me’n the other losers) go back and play ancient games just to get the card drops. Because, monkey.

But wait, there’s more. You can’t get the entire set by playing. You get about half. You get the rest by trading in the trading forum, or buying them in the Steam marketplace. Sell any duplicates or unwanted cards, buy the ones you don’t have. They go for about 10p apiece, on average. All of which goes in and out of your Steam wallet, which you can use to buy games. From Steam.

Oh, it gets losery still. Once you get a complete set of any one card, you can ‘craft’ a badge. Which creates a little icon. You can stick on your profile. In case anyone in the whole wide world is losery enough to check your profile and gives a flying fuck at a rolling donut if there’s a badge on your account.

Nope. Still haven’t plumbed the depths. Another way you earn cards is by buying stuff during the semi-annual Steam sales — a card for every $10 worth of games. Also, by voting on what should go on sale next — a card per every three votes. You can vote every eight hours, and the sale was about 10 days long. It’s just finished.

And here’s where we plumb the very depths of my loseriness. When I went to check my account this evening, there was a little announcement that the Steam Sale 2013 Badge could only be crafted for a limited time. I don’t even remember how many hours, I just panicked and ran to the marketplace for those last two cards.

And there it is: my Steam Sale 2013 Stupid Monkeybadge. I hope you’re impressed.


Comment from Uncle Badger
Time: January 3, 2014, 12:54 am

That is truly, achingly, sad.

Comment from Pupster
Time: January 3, 2014, 12:56 am


Comment from Mrs Compton
Time: January 3, 2014, 2:34 am

Hmm, wonder how many of those cards Mr Compton has. He’s been waiting for the game sale for months to get a certain game.

Comment from Uncle Al
Time: January 3, 2014, 2:45 am

Impressed? You mean impressed like a road-kill toad on hot tarmac?

Comment from Feynmangroupie
Time: January 3, 2014, 3:09 am

“What a slave to commercialism” she thought, as she sipped Kombucha and ate gluten-free crackers.

Comment from Stark Dickflüssig
Time: January 3, 2014, 3:24 am

I need a +2 Butt Trumpet of Smiting.

I’ll trade you my Pony Caviar.

Comment from Oceania
Time: January 3, 2014, 3:34 am

There is a Party planned – but none of you are Invited.


Comment from Nina
Time: January 3, 2014, 6:13 am

No worries, we all have our little foibles.


Comment from JuliaM
Time: January 3, 2014, 7:02 am

When did it stop being gaming, and start being work..?

Comment from Mike C.
Time: January 3, 2014, 8:12 am

Sounds analagous to “Karma” points on blog comments. Which is a 100 % certain indicator that a blog is circling the drain, IMHO.

Comment from Oceania
Time: January 3, 2014, 11:56 am

Sweasel knows it is a Real Party!


Actually, this set up is a prefect way of sending hidden messages in websites!

Well done Sweasel! Which programme do you use to specifically restrict data based on IP addresses? I need it for my website.

If you are clever, you can edit this and reply inside your website …

Comment from Cantharkmycry
Time: January 3, 2014, 1:27 pm

I’m not a gamer, but it all makes perfect sense to me. I catch myself buying into those kinds of schemes all the time.

Comment from S. Weasel
Time: January 3, 2014, 1:47 pm

I used to buy Red Rose tea for the Wade figurines. I’m obviously susceptible to little serotonin hits.

Comment from Cantharkmycry
Time: January 3, 2014, 4:18 pm

Hey, crackerjack and the little prize in every box?

Comment from Mojo
Time: January 3, 2014, 5:21 pm

Ook ook…

Comment from surly ermine
Time: January 3, 2014, 6:34 pm

I think I have some cards or badges or some other thingys on Steam. You can have if you want ’em.

Comment from Sigivald
Time: January 3, 2014, 9:03 pm

I’m not sure who invented achievements, but I believe XBox had them before Steam.

(I just checked Wikipedia, and the XBox 360 “gamerscore” system is credited as being the first, so yay me?

I mostly just think it’s a pity they don’t interoperate – this especially means you, UbiSoft.

But then, everything about Ubisoft’s online experiences is abysmal, that I’ve seen.)

Steam is still brilliant, though I completely ignore the “cards” thing.

Comment from Mojo
Time: January 3, 2014, 9:48 pm

“Laugh while-a you can, monkey boy!”
— Dr. Emilio Lizardo

Comment from Some Vegetable
Time: January 3, 2014, 11:22 pm

I can hear my mom now,”Gee, that snowflake is really nice honey- What were some of the BIG prizes?

Comment from David Gillies
Time: January 4, 2014, 2:37 am

Every time I think it might be fun to play a few games I find it looks too much like work. I stopped gaming with Diablo II. Might have to see if I can get it up and running on OS X Mavericks just for old times’ sake.

Comment from BJM
Time: January 4, 2014, 11:04 pm

Oh man, I missed the sale badge by *that* much.

Why do we do this!? Oh, well it beats buying shit we don’t need on QVC. Amirite?

Comment from J.S.Bridges
Time: January 4, 2014, 11:10 pm

“I used to buy Red Rose tea for the Wade figurines…”

Once upon a time, some years ago, I followed a routine involving purchases, in middling-large quantities at a crack, of boxes of Red Rose tea, each of same containing (per a wee illustration on the box-fronts) a small glazed-ceramic aminal. Said purchases where then either shipped via parcel post, or conveyed personally via my regularly-undertaken visits, from whence I then resided (Southeastern Lower-Peninsular MI) to my Mother’s residence (in suburban Cincinnati, OH), and there divided (generally equally) between Mother and Older Sister (who lived – as she still does – in nearby Northern KY).

Object: Augmentation of collection(s) of said small glazed-ceramic aminals.

I’m unsure just what became of most (if not all) of the tea – neither Mother nor Older Sister were given to heavy (if any) consumption of tea, IIRC – though I do recall being proffered generous libations of various iced-tea-based drinks during visits in the hotter months during those years, now that I think upon it…

Rather interesting “sport”, that collection-of-wee-aminals thing – for some…

As for myself – I neither generally collect small ceramic items (I do have a few Hummels, but I mostly inherited them) nor usually play video games. My (generally-adult) son is the video-game-player in the immediate clan, along with a cousin who resides in FL. They sometimes compare notes via the Intartoobs, from what Son tells me. I will perhaps consult him/them regarding the issues of Steam and/or Monkeybadges.

(More fun than politickin’, I think, anyways…)

Comment from Steve Skubinna
Time: January 5, 2014, 4:22 am

Been on Steam a while, against my initial better judgement. Eventually I learned to really appreciate not having to stuff physical media in the luggage when traveling, and especially appreciated Steam downloading all my games when upgrading to a new laptop a year ago.

But the badges and achievements… yeah, I got a bunch and have no idea what to do with them. And even less interest in doing whatever it is I’m supposed to do with them. Just wait, though… at some point we’ll be able to redeem them for actual honest to God pins we can wear on our lapels or ball caps, or maybe those little dangly things girls buy to hang on their phones. I suppose the kinds of people who actually purchase Call Of Duty edition Jeep Wranglers will be all over those. Not that there’s anything wrong with that.

Except that there is. Bet you five bucks Obamacare Pajama Boy has his eye on a COD Jeep Wrangler. Either that or he entered the lottery to win a Ford F-150 Warthog.

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