Valve has just launched its new Steam Chat update for all users. It clearly takes a lot of inspiration from Discord, allowing easy group chat and seamless transition between voice and video functions.
The UI redesign had been in beta since June, allowing select users to try out the new features. Now though, it’s available to everyone with a Steam account, and definitely looks to be a big overhaul.
Thanks to a more robust chat system, users can now post GIFs, videos, social links and pictures easily, something which was an absolute nightmare before the update. Over the last couple of years, Discord has become the default chat platform for gamers, though it looks like Valve is definitely trying to win people back to the Steam platform.
The new features include a more detailed, and intuitive friend system. You can now see what friends are playing, where they are in the game, and also have a group of favorites which appear at the top of your list. Group chats can be created and can be broken up into channels to better organize them. Invite links are now possible, or you can simply drag and drop from the friends list. It’s a far cry from what Steam’s chat functions used to be, though we will have to wait to see if Valve can steal gamers away from Discord.
The new Steam Chat can be run in a browser, or via the Steam Client. For a full breakdown of the new features, head over to Valve’s recent blog post.