All things considered, Steam is a rather generous digital game storefront. Beyond the endless amount of free games constantly released and given away on there, not to mention the huge discounts that roll around time and time again, it also offers a very useful refund system.
Steam’s policy states that – as far as full games are concerned – users can request a refund on any PC game that they’ve owned for less than two weeks and have played for less than two hours. This means that if you buy a new game and immediately find that you absolutely hate it for some reason, or that it doesn’t run as well as you hoped, you can get your money back, which is super helpful.
Now though, as RetroResolve reports, one YouTuber claims to have discovered an exploit to earn “infinite free games” during the Steam Summer Sale. Before we get into this, I can’t emphasise enough how much you shouldn’t try this at home – in its refund policy, Steam states: “Refunds are designed to remove the risk from purchasing titles on Steam – not as a way to get free games. If it appears to us that you are abusing refunds, we may stop offering them to you.” Therefore, please don’t consider the following information to be a repeatable, reliable method, as there’s a very decent chance it’ll end up costing you a lot of money. Okay? Okay.
YouTuber The Spiffing Brit posted a video earlier this week explaining how he managed to earn a decent amount of Steam wallet funds by collecting and selling the trading cards which are currently being given out to users during the Steam Summer Sale. Until 13 July, for every $10 (roughly £7.88) users spend on the Steam Store, they’ll be given one Summer In The City digital trading card. These can then be sold on the Community Market for, admittedly, a very small amount of money (around 3p/4¢). However, this adds up eventually, and in theory, it’s possible to earn enough money to buy however many games you want just from selling them.
I guess you already know where this is going, huh? In the video, The Spiffing Brit exploited this mechanic by buying an enormous amount of games, selling all of the trading cards, and then refunding the games – leaving the funds from the card sales in his Steam wallet, but without the dent in his bank account from buying hundreds of pounds worth of games.
Once again, it’s really not recommended to try this at home – there’s a good chance that Steam will stop any activities like this in their tracks given that refunds aren’t meant to be used as a way to get free games.