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How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games

Chris Hoffman is Editor-in-Chief of How-To Geek. He’s written about technology for over a decade and was a PCWorld columnist for two years. Chris has written for The New York Times, been interviewed as a technology expert on TV stations like Miami’s NBC 6, and had his work covered by news outlets like the BBC. Since 2011, Chris has written over 2,000 articles that have been read nearly one billion times—and that’s just here at How-To Geek. Read more.

Want to see how much money you’ve spent on Steam? Valve keeps a running tally tracking every dollar you’ve ever spent on your account. Here’s how to see how much damage you’ve taken during Steam sales.

Third-party tools like SteamDB will “estimate” the value of your Steam account based on how much the games you own are currently being sold for. We’re not using those tools here. Instead, we’ll show you how to see exactly how much money you’ve spent on Steam—down to the cent—without any third-party tools.

To find this information, open Steam and click Help > Steam Support.

How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games

Click “My Account” on the Steam Support page.

How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games

Click “Data Related to Your Steam Account” at the bottom of the page.

How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games

Click “External Funds Used” in the list here.

How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games

You’ll see three numbers here:

  • “TotalSpend” is the total amount of money you’ve spent on this Steam account. This is the number you’re looking for.
  • “OldSpend” is the amount of money you’ve spent before April 17, 2015. (This was the date “Limited User Account” restrictions for people who haven’t spent at least $5 on Steam went into place.)
  • “PWSpend” is the amount of money you’ve spent on a Perfect World account, according to IGN. Perfect World Entertainment is a Chinese online gaming company that operates Dota 2 and CS:GO in China.

Хотите узнать, сколько денег вы потратили на Steam? Valve постоянно отслеживает каждый доллар, который вы когда-либо потратили на свой счет. Вот как узнать, какой урон вы понесли во время продаж в Steam.

Сторонние инструменты нравиться SteamDB будет «оценивать» стоимость вашей учетной записи Steam на основе того, за сколько сейчас продаются игры, которыми вы владеете. Мы не используем здесь эти инструменты. Вместо этого мы покажем вам, как точно узнать, сколько денег вы потратили на Steam – вплоть до цента – без каких-либо сторонних инструментов.

Чтобы найти эту информацию, откройте Steam и нажмите «Справка»> «Поддержка Steam».

How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games

Нажмите «Моя учетная запись» на странице поддержки Steam.

How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games

Нажмите «Данные, связанные с вашей учетной записью Steam» внизу страницы.

How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games

Щелкните здесь в списке «Использованные внешние средства».

How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games

Здесь вы увидите три числа:

  • «Общие расходы» – это общая сумма денег, которую вы потратили на эту учетную запись Steam. Это тот номер, который вы ищете.
  • «OldSpend» – это сумма денег, которую вы потратили до 17 апреля 2015 г. (Это была дата « Ограниченная учетная запись пользователя (Вступили в силу ограничения для людей, которые не потратили на Steam как минимум 5 долларов).
  • «PWSpend» – это сумма денег, которую вы потратили на аккаунт Perfect World, согласно IGN . Perfect World Entertainment – китайская компания по онлайн-играм, которая управляет Dota 2 и CS: GO в Китае.

How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games

Кстати, вы также можете получить доступ к этой странице напрямую, перейдя в хттпс://хелп.стэмповеред.ком/ен/аццоунтдата/АццоунтСпенд в браузере и войдите в свою учетную запись Steam.

There is now a page on Steam with a simple job: to tell you how much money you’ve spent on Steam since creating your account.

The External Funds page is part of the Steam Support site, so you’ll need to log in to see it. Or, go to Support > My Account > Data Related to Your Steam Account > External Funds Used.

It categories your spending under three main stats: total spend, old spend, and PW spend. Total spend is a tally of all the money you spent on Steam, whether that’s buying games for yourself, gifting them to others, or buying anything off the Steam Market.

This does not take into account games purchased outside of Steam that you redeemed on Steam, only things you actually paid Valve for. The total spend takes into account money taken directly out of your card, as well as Steam Wallet funds which you spent on the platform.

How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games

Old spend only shows the money spent up before April 17, 2015. You may remember that Valve instated a policy around that time that restricts users who have not spent at least $5 from trading, sending friend invites, or using the market.

This was done to cut down on bots, scammers and the like. The total spend stat includes the old spend as well.

As for PW spend, it’ll simply track all the money you spent through a Perfect World account in Dota 2, or Counter-Strike: Global Offensive. For anyone outside of China, this will most likely be $0, since it only tracks the Chinese versions of those games, which are co-published in the country by Perfect World.

Best to check it now before the Steam Summer Sale adds even more to it.

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About the Author

Whether it’s news, reviews, or interviews – Sherif is always eager to tell you about video games. He plays shooters more than a sane person should, and occasionally has the skills to show for it.

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How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games

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If you’ve ever wondered how much money you’ve spent on video games in your life, Valve may have an answer for you. But you’ll probably just regret looking it up.

For example, I’ve spent $858.25 on Steam, according to a new “External Funds Used” tool that Valve has added to its game-distribution platform. That number is simultaneously really big and not as large as it could be.

The thing is that a lot of the games in my Steam library were free. I got codes for work, and it’s been that way for years. It’s definitely been that way since I started primarily playing on PC. And yet, even though I get most games at no cost, I’ve somehow still spent nearly $900. It makes me wonder how much I would’ve spent if I had another job instead of writing about games for a living.

If you’re wondering how much you’ve spent, you can do so easily. Just click this link to the Steam account spend tool, log into your Steam account, and then check the “Total Spend” row.

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We’ve spent an embarrassing amount on Steam games. How about you?

When it comes to parting fools from their money, there are few places on the internet quite as glorious as Steam, particularly during a Steam Sale .

So you can imagine our surprise, delight and quaking horror to learn Steam now lets you see exactly how much you’ve spent on games!

For instance, one CNET editor spent $2,809.31, and is now slightly genuinely afraid that number might somehow reach the missus.

To find your total, just click this handy link and log into Steam’s website. (Or you can navigate a crazy menu tree in the Steam desktop app like so: Help > Steam Support > My Account > Data Related to your Steam Account > External Funds Used.)

Just know it won’t count codes you’re received, so no Humble Bundle purchases or Kickstarters.

Here’s how much some of CNET’s other gamers have spent, high or low — and what they have to say for themselves. Note that some names have been withheld to protect the innocent/guilty.

Anonymous CNET editor

  • Total spent: $3,503.04
  • Most hours on a game: TrackMania United (786 hours)
  • Joined Steam: March 2004

“Throughout my life, video games have been the safe way to do things I never would have otherwise done (race cars, fly fighters, kill demons, etc). I’m never going to jump off a cliff wearing a wing suit in real life, but I can do it from the safety of my couch with a video game. and IT’S FUN.”

Nick Hide, global copy chief

  • Total spent: $699.27
  • Most hours on a game: Civilization VI (572 hours)
  • Joined Steam: January 2010

“I’m shocked I’ve spent so much, I had no idea — I thought all I used it for was a bit of Civ every few years. (Admittedly 572 hours is more than a bit.) Apparently there’s 10 games I’ve put at least 40 hours into. In my defense I would say that I sometimes leave my PC on pause and go out, so that’s not 100 percent play time.”

Anonymous CNET editor

  • Total spent: $1,790.36
  • Most hours on a game: Fallout 4 (147 hours)
  • Joined Steam: May 2006

“I could always justify buying new games to ‘test’ for work on new gaming laptops, so my trigger finger was a little itchy.”

Lexy Savvides, senior editor

  • Total spent: $17.96
  • Most hours on a game: Age of Empires II: HD Edition (47 hours)
  • Joined Steam: December 2010

“I’m glad both numbers are low, because it hides the hundreds of hours I used to spend playing the original Age of Empires II on PC before Steam was even a thing. I was so dedicated I’d even play with an Ethernet crossover cable hooked into to another PC so we could play multiplayer.”

Kelsey Adams, senior copy editor

  • Total spent: $206.84
  • Most hours on a game: Surviving Mars (399 hours)
  • Joined Steam: May 2014

“A STAGGERINGLY low $206.84! Wow! If this doesn’t include outside codes, it should be at least 50 percent higher, but still. Considering the, for example, 135 hours of enjoyment I’ve gotten out of Sunless Sea, I barely feel guilty at all. And as for the 97 hours playing Fallout Shelter, um. I was multitasking!”

Anonymous CNET editor

  • Total spent: $1,602.11
  • Most hours on a game: Grand Theft Auto V (277 hours)
  • Joined Steam: 2004

“That’s only what I’ve actually spent. I get a lot of codes for consideration, feedback and review so if I were to total my actual Steam account value that’d be $10,273.82.”

David Katzmaier, section editor, TVs and Home Theater

  • Total spent: $864.83
  • Most hours on a game: Fallout 4 (487 hours)
  • Joined Steam: July 2013

“I chalk a lot of those Fallout 4 hours up to bases I’ve constructed, but between that game and Skyrim I’ve logged exactly 768 hours (32 days) of Steam play time — what can I say, replaying with different characters and styles is so much damn fun. If Skyrim counted PS3 and Switch, I wonder if I’d be close to 1,000 hours between the two?”

Morgan Little, social media manager

  • Total spent: $698.06
  • Most hours on a game: Team Fortress 2 (183 hours)
  • Joined Steam: March 2010

“BUT the caveat being that I handed off an account to my little brother that had been around since about 2005 that easily had a few hundred additional bucks and an ungodly amount of TF2 time put into it. If they make a TF3, I’ll likely never be seen again.”

GIF created by YouTuber Killomainia

Anonymous CNET editor

  • Total spent: $418.14
  • Most hours on a game: BioShock Infinite (87 hours)
  • Joined Steam: July 3, 2017 (“Now I know how I spent my July 4”)

“It’s such a short time because I only joined when I finally got fed up using a shared account and constantly losing my progress (technically, I’ve spent most of my time ripping demons apart in Doom, just not all under my account). I don’t have a lot of hours on any particular game because I have the attention span and frustration threshold of a 3-year-old, and jump from game to game when I get stuck. I also have the financial skills of a 3-year-old, which is why I limit myself to games under $20.”

Tim Stevens, editor-in-chief of Roadshow

  • Total spent: $146.49
  • Most hours on a game: BioShock Infinite (106 hours)
  • Joined Steam: February 2005

“Oof, I guess I’m cheap. Shows my console preference. Also, a lot of my Steam ‘purchases’ lately have been Kickstarters. Anyhow! I joined in February of 2005 and I’ve spent 106 hours in wedded, co-op bliss wandering around lost in Divinity: Original Sin 2 with my wife. (Battletech is my biggest solo game, at 94 hours.)”

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Something New

Valve’s Steam app will now let users discover how much they’ve spent on games through the app over the years.

Look out, Steam users. The service has got some new functionality, and you’re probably not going to like it. Have you ever wanted to keep tabs on how much you’ve spent on Steam? Of course you haven’t, but now you can.

Now, there are some things that we don’t need to know. Things that we should never know. How are those hotdogs made? How do airplanes fly? How is I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter so buttery, yet not butter? How can children refuse their dinner, only to complain that they’re hungry as soon as you’ve taken the plate away? You just don’t question these things.

Another big one would be, how dang much have I spent in total on Steam? You don’t want to go there, or anywhere near there. Everyone who uses the service will be familiar with those oh-so-tempting Steam sales, which lure us into buying games we’ll probably play at some point or other. We rarely do, but they’re just so cheap.

The trouble with this mentality is that it all adds up. Over a few years, all this pocket change –plus the actual full price titles you’re buying in between, of course—can mean substantial spending. How much, exactly? There’s an option to check on that now.

As Redditors have discovered to their peril, you can now log into Steam and check exactly how much you’ve spent on the service to date in your account options. You can see it by hopping into Help > Support > My Account > Data > External Funds Used. Three totals will appear, IGN reports: OldSpend, TotalSpend and PWSpend. The first refers only to money spent on Steam before April 17 2015, Reddit reports, while the second is your lifetime total.

What’s so special about April 17 2015? Nobody’s entirely sure, but it seems that this was the date that Steam implemented their accounts-restricted-unless-you-spend-a-little policy. PW? That refers to Perfect World Entertainment, a Chinese developer partnered with Steam.

Never mind persnickety details, though. The important thing is, this functionality is here, it’s now, and you do not want to use it. Try and resist the temptation. No good can come of it.

Because who doesn’t want to look like Henry Cavill?

When you’re a Steam user and you’re really passionate about a game, spending money on various items, such as expansion packs or cosmetic DLCs is a must.

The problem is that gamers are very rarely aware of how much money they actually spent on buying games and game-related items. Some gamers prefer to view that as an ‘investment’.

But when they decide to check the numbers, they’re often shocked to see just how big those numbers are.

Below you’ll find all the steps to follow in order to check how much you spent on Steam (with screenshots).

Check How Much Money You Spent on Steam

  • Steps 1 – Launch Steam and click Help
  • Step 2 – Select Steam Support
  • Step 3 – Go to My Account
  • Step 4 – Click on Data Related to Your Steam Account
  • Step 5 – Select External Funds Used
  • Step 6 – Locate TotalSpend, that’s how much you spent on Steam.

Under External Funds Used, there are two more sections:

  • OldSpend — this represents the money spent prior to April 2015.
  • PWSpend — this is specific to gamers from China and it represents the money you spent on a Perfect World account for playing Dota 2 and CS:GO in China.

⇒ Good to Know

Steam uses the amount of money spent as external funds to determine whether an account is limited or not. As a quick reminder, a limited Steam account means that the user has spent less than $5 on Steam.

For more information, see What Does a Limited Steam Account Mean?

An Alternative Method

You can also use your browser to check out how much money went from your pocket to Steam.

Go to https://help.steampowered.com/en/accountdata/AccountSpend, log in and check the numbers.

⇒ Good to Know

How much money does the average gamer spend on Steam? It is estimated that the average gamer spends $200 on Steam. Of course, the numbers for hardcore gamers can go in the five digit range.

How much do I have to spend on Steam to add friends? In order to be able to add friends on Steam, you must spend at least $5 coming from external funds. Steam accounts that have spent less than $5 cannot send friend invites.

How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games

Want to see how much money you’ve spent on Steam? Valve keeps a running tally tracking every dollar you’ve ever spent on your account. Here’s how to see how much damage you’ve taken during Steam sales.

Third-party tools like SteamDB will “estimate” the value of your Steam account based on how much the games you own are currently being sold for. We’re not using those tools here. Instead, we’ll show you how to see exactly how much money you’ve spent on Steam—down to the cent—without any third-party tools.

To find this information, open Steam and click Help > Steam Support.

How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games

Click “My Account” on the Steam Support page.

How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games

Click “Data Related to Your Steam Account” at the bottom of the page.

How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games

Click “External Funds Used” in the list here.

How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games

You’ll see three numbers here:

  • “TotalSpend” is the total amount of money you’ve spent on this Steam account. This is the number you’re looking for.
  • “OldSpend” is the amount of money you’ve spent before April 17, 2015. (This was the date “Limited User Account” restrictions for people who haven’t spent at least $5 on Steam went into place.)
  • “PWSpend” is the amount of money you’ve spent on a Perfect World account, according to IGN. Perfect World Entertainment is a Chinese online gaming company that operates Dota 2 and CS:GO in China.

Your shame laid bare.

on June 29, 2018 at 12:44PM PDT

If you’ve ever wondered exactly how much money you’ve spent on Steam, Valve’s got your back. The company recently launched a new tool to its game-distribution platform that lets players get an exact number on how much cash they’ve dropped.

This new feature should prove especially enlightening for players who primarily spend their time on free-to-play games. Now you’ll be able to see exactly how much money you’ve spent on loot boxes, expansion packs, and DLC characters.

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While on Steam, head to the new External Funds Used tool, log into your account, and then scroll to the “Total Spend” row. There’s your number.

For those who are willing to share, do you think you’ve got the highest number? Is your total amount higher or lower than you were expecting? Leave your answers in the comment section down below.

If you’re looking to up your number, Steam just launched its Summer Sale. There are plenty of excellent deals, including video games about your favorite Crunchyroll anime. The sale doesn’t just cover software either. Both the Steam controller and Steam Link are on sale too.

Be ready to hold your head in your hands as the amount you’ve spent on Steam is revealed.

News by Tom Orry, Audience Development Manager, Gamer Network

Updated on 19 June 2018

Got a news tip?

Is there something you think we should be reporting on? Email [email protected]

If you’re looking for a reason to question your life choices, a tool on Steam that shows you how much money you’ve spent on the store might be exactly what you’re looking for. Simply login with your account info and be prepared for the truth to come at you faster than Valve rakes in the cash.

The tool, which was spotted by Venture Beat, is found on the official Steam site and will give you a total spend for your purchases on steam, in USD. The official steam expenditure tool doesn’t include the amount spent on codes that you’ve redeemed, only including the money spent directly on the Steam store.

How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games This person will remain anonymous.

If you’re now sat at your desk staring into oblivion or looking in abject horror at the number on your phone, you have my sympathy. A colleague sat feet from me logged in to reveal a total spend close to $6.5k, so please let us know if you’ve topped that.

Steam regularly runs sales, often featuring great deals on hundreds of games. With prices dropping to pocket change it’s easy to throw money at Valve without giving it a second thought. Those moments of weakness during Steam sales might just have cost you more than you thought, though.

Elsewhere on the site we’ve got the best Steam games. We’ve also got a look at Valve’s latest Steam policy that got the firm into some hot water with consumers.

Audience Development Manager, Gamer Network

Article updated on Dec. 19, 2021 to reflect navigational changes and EU GDRP regulation updates.

The amount of content on Steam is nearly unlimited, which makes many people spend loads of money on the platform. Luckily, there’s a new way of viewing your entire purchase history. This addition came because of the GDRP (General Data Protection Regulation) in the EU.

Continue reading this article and find out how to view your purchase history on Steam.

How to See Your Purchase History in Steam

Follow the instructions to see your Steam purchase history:

  1. Log into your Steam account. We suggest installing and using the Steam client instead of the website. Click on the link to download or update Steam.
    How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games
  2. Next, click on your profile in the top-right corner of the Steam Home page and select Account details.
    How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games
  3. Your Account details page will now appear.
    How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games
  4. Under Store & Purchase History, click on View purchase history.
    How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games
  5. Steam will show you your entire purchase history in the next window.
    How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games

You can scroll down and see every single purchase and market transaction you made on Steam. Yes, they even added the Steam Community Market purchases and sales to provide maximum transparency.

What You Can Find in Your Steam Purchase History

Thanks to the changes in legislation in the EU, the Steam purchase history now offers a very detailed table of contents. You can easily browse the transactions and see when, where, and how you spent money on Steam or earned money from it.

  1. View the “Date” section, which shows the exact date of the purchase.
    How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games
  2. The Items section shows you what games or programs/apps you got. The Items section is lackluster because it shows all Steam Community Market sales and purchases the same way, without a clear distinction of what you’ve sold or bought. Hopefully, Valve will update it in the future.
    How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games
  3. The Type section shows you how you’ve earned or spent money. Finally, you will see the total amount of money gained or lost and the changes made to your Steam Wallet.
    How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games

Overall, Steam purchase history is a fantastic tool and a great addition, and now it’s even easier to track all your Steam payments. Sure, Steam always sends you an email notification when you make a sale or a purchase on the platform, but who can keep track of all their emails over an extended period?

Use Steam Purchase History as a Proof of Purchase

The Steam purchase history is not only a good overview of all your Steam transactions. It can also be used as proof of purchase in case something goes wrong, such as missing DLC, missing from library, trouble with the key, and more. You can also ask for a refund, ask a question, complain about being overcharged, ask for a receipt, etc. This menu is pretty handy, especially if and when something goes wrong.

Here’s how to select the appropriate item, respond, and screenshot your proof of purchase.

  1. Click on your profile icon or gametag in the top-right section, then select “Account details.”
    How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games
  2. Click on “View Purchase History.”
    How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games
  3. Select the transaction in question.
    How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games
  4. Select the specific game in question if applicable.
    How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games
  5. Your purchase details appear for the game you previously selected.
    How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games
  6. Explore other transaction options by scrolling down.
    How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games
  7. To screenshot a purchase receipt (includes entire purchase—not just one game), click on “I would like to view or print the receipt for this purchase.”
    How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games
  8. Your receipt appears on the screen showing the account name, invoice, purchase date, payment method, and amount for all games in that transaction. It’s the email they sent to you after purchase.
    How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games

You can also select an purchase transaction rather than a specific game to use with the steps above.

Steam Keeps Improving

Viewing your purchase history on Steam can be stressful for some, but it is helpful to all. Valve is continually improving the platform, introducing new features, and increasing transparency.

Buying, gifting, and selling are seamless, and everything is now neatly in one place. Steam’s purchase history section follows suit.

  • You can refund a game purchased on Steam if you request the refund within two weeks of purchase, and have played the game for less than two hours total.
  • When your game is refunded, it will be removed from your Steam library, and you’ll receive the full value of your purchase back.
  • Visit Insider’s Tech Reference library for more stories.

One of the problems with video games is that it’s hard to know if we’ll like a game until we buy it and play it. That’s why it’s a good thing that Steam, the biggest digital game retailer around, offers refunds for purchases you’re not satisfied with.

If you’re unlucky enough to experience buyer’s remorse early in your gameplay experience, Steam will painlessly return your money. All you have to do is submit a request, and the game will be taken out of your library, and your money will be refunded.

However, there are limits to how long you can have a game before returning it. To return a game, you can’t have owned it for more than two weeks, and you can’t play it for more than two hours total. If you try to return a game outside of these limits, there’s a good chance your request will be rejected.

And when it comes to the two hours of playtime, Steam counts every second the game application is open as playtime. The timer runs even when the game is minimized or paused — something to keep in mind if you’re on the fence about trying to fix the game or refund it early in your experience.

How to refund a game on Steam

To demonstrate, I’m going to purchase a copy of the game “Bad Rats” and refund it.

1. Make sure the game has less than two hours of playtime, and you haven’t owned it for more than 14 days, or two weeks. Steam will show you the time you’ve played the game for when you select it in your library.

2. At the top of the Steam app (or the top of your screen on a Mac) there should be a “Help” option. Select it, then select “Steam Support.”

3. Steam Support will list your most recently purchased games. Instead, scroll down to “Purchases” and click it, and then select the product you want to refund from the page that appears.

4. Choose “I would like a refund.” Steam will offer to either add the value of the game to your Steam Wallet, or to refund the transaction from the payment method you used.

5. Steam asks you to list a reason you’re requesting a refund. Select your reason from the drop-down box.

6. Steam will issue you a reference code, and email you with the results of your refund request. In my case, the time between Steam receiving my request and issuing my refund was 59 minutes.

If you fall outside the time frame for a refund, you can still submit a refund request for the Steam Support staff to look over. However, it’s unlikely you’ll be compensated.

Fortnite is one of the biggest free-to-play games on consoles and PC. But that hasn’t stopped players from dropping money into the game. With in-game currency like V-Bucks, Fortnite players are eager to learn how much money they’ve spent on the game.

How to See How Much Money You’ve Spent in Fortnite

Before you check out all the new stuff from the latest update, maybe you should peek at what you’ve spent so far. Buying V-Bucks can leave many players curious (or concerned) about how much they’ve spent in Fortnite overall. Well, there’s no real system in place to check on that in the game. Instead, you have to head to Epic Games’s official site to log into your account.

From there, go to Account Settings and look for your Purchase History. This is where you will see all of your transactions in-game. So, if you want to know how much money you’ve spent in Fortnite, it’s time to whip out the calculator. This can be quite the awakening for some people or a surprise to others.

Now, you can always check on your purchases in a more unique manner. Go to Fortnite.gg and create an account. From there, it has a My Locker section you can check. The only thing is you must manually add your purchases in. This is the only way you can get an estimate of how much money you’ve spent.

Is it quicker? No. But does it look cooler than just reading your purchases? Absolutely.

Related:

Fortnite: Where to Find Guzzle Juice

Fortnite is free-to-play, but with V-Bucks and many cosmetics, players are stuck trying to figure out how much money they’ve spent on it. A quick dip into your Epic Games account should tell you everything you need. Perhaps you haven’t purchased as much as you thought. Or maybe you’ve gone a bit overboard.

No matter, you can always enjoy Fortnite without spending anything.

Fortnite is available on PS5, PS4, Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, Nintendo, and PC.

Add to My Vault:

How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games

Can you believe we’re coming up to 18 years since Valve first introduced Steam? The digital distribution service has gone on to become a household name among us PC enthusiasts, and though plenty of other storefronts have entered the fray, Steam remains one of the most widely used platforms around the world.

Recent lockdowns have served to accelerate that growth. According to Valve’s 2020 yearly review, Steam now boasts 120m active monthly users and nearly 63m daily players. Sales, naturally, have rocketed, with game purchases having climbed by 21.4 per cent compared to 2019.

Makes you wonder, how much have you spent on Steam individually throughout the years? Turns out, there’s a way to check. On the Steam client, click Help > Steam Support > My Account > Data Related to Your Steam Account > External Funds Used. The resulting page will reveal your total spend, though do be aware the figure does not take into account external purchases redeemed on the platform.

Some of you have probably used Steam for the thick end of the two decades, so we’re curious to know, how much have you spent over the years? Share your totals using the comments facility below.

How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games

Character stats are a staple mechanic in video games, so why aren’t they also front and center on your Steam profile? Steam knows how much money you’ve spent (gold) and how much time you’ve played (experience), and so should you.

If learning those numbers strikes fear into you (as it certainly might if you have even a passing video game habit) you may want to skip some of these tools — but the quest is always there, should you choose to accept it.

Also read: Steam Not Opening? Here Are the Fixes

To use most of the tools below, you’ll need your Steam ID, which is a 17-digit number that uniquely identifies your account. It’s not the same as the username you use to log in, so it can take a bit of finding, but we’ve got a guide to help you find your Steam ID here.

Alternatively, you can use a site like SteamIDFinder or SteamID I/O, and it will tell you all possible versions of your Steam ID. Some stat sites will also accept your customURL and tell you your other Steam IDs.

Also read: Steam vs. Epic Games Store: Which PC Gaming Client Is Better For You?

Make your Steam profile public

Another thing you’ll probably have to do is set your Steam profile to “Public” so that these tools are allowed to see your information. Unless you care about people who know your Steam ID seeing this stuff, there’s not much to worry about from a data standpoint, and if you’re concerned, you can always just set your profile back to private after you look up your info. Here’s how to do it:

1. Click on your username in the top-right corner and click “View my profile.”

2. When your profile opens, select “Edit Profile.”

How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games

3. Select “My privacy settings” from the menu on the right.

How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games

4. Set your profile (or just the parts you want) to “Public.”

Augmented Steam

How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games

An extension for Chrome, Edge and Firefox, Augmented Steam looks at your Steam data behind the scenes, so that when you open Steam in your browser, it will give extra details on games such as the best prices you can find for them, their OpenCritic scores, and how long it takes to beat them by using information from HowLongToBeat.com.

While it doesn’t focus on your Steam stats, it greatly increases the information available to you on a given game you’re interested in, trawling for the best deals and giving you extra details that you won’t find on Steam itself.

Steam Gauge

When it comes to quantifying your Steam profile, there’s no competing with Steam Gauge. It’s the king of Steam stats. Pretty much anything you want to see about your time, spending, and game library is laid out in table form. You can sort by any number of different variables, including price per hour played, which is a fun way to see how much value you’re getting out of each game.

How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games

However, Steam Gauge can only see the current value of the games in your library, so it can’t tell you how much you’ve actually spent on a game. If you’re a habitual Steam sale shopper, you’ll probably be impressed by your combined discounts. To see a game-by-game comparison, you can look at your Steam purchase history (located in your Account section).

Completionist.me

How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games

Like Steam Gauge, Completionist gives you a dashboard that shows you your gaming activity, mostly focusing on how many of the achievements you’ve unlocked. You can already see some of this on your Steam profile, but it gives you some fun perks, like seeing your achievement trends over time and how close each of your games is to being “complete,” i.e., having every achievement unlocked.

HowLongToBeat

How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games

Are you addicted to Steam sales? Do those unplayed games in your library stare at you judgmentally every time you check out with a new title? If you ever got the urge to go back and play through the games you already have, though, how much time would it take you? That’s what HowLongToBeat has set out to answer: just plug in your Steam ID, and they’ll look at your library and make their best guess at how long it would take you to finish every game. It’s a rough estimate, but once you start hitting a few months of play-time, you may want to rethink your life.

How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games

SteamLeft does something similar but also looks at how long you’ve actually spent playing the games and tells you how much time you have remaining.

Steamtime

At this point, you probably know how much time you’ve spent, but how do you rank compared to other gamers? Steamtime can give you some insight into that, as it’ll tell you how much time you’ve spent and rank you compared to every other gamer that has looked up their profile.

How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games

To get an idea of what that number actually means, you’ll want to visit their “Statistics” tab so you can see how many people you’re being compared to here. It’s a ballpark estimate at best, since these stats are leaving out anyone who hasn’t used Steamtime (i.e, people who don’t spend enough time on Steam to be curious), but with over 250,000 ranked profiles, you still get a decent idea.

SteamCalculator

How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games

SteamCalculator basically does what Steam Gauge does but with fewer extra statistics. If you’re not interested in the time you’ve spent playing or other information about your library, this tool gives you a simple look at the current value of each game in your library – though, again, you’ll have to visit your external funds used page to see your actual total spending.

Some stats are just fun for their own sake, and so are these, but these numbers also have real-world implications. If you want to do other fun stuff in Steam then see our guide on streaming your Steam and non-Steam games through Steam Link. We can also show you how to run Windows-based Steam games on Linux using the excellent Proton.

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Want to see how much money you’ve spent on Steam? Valve keeps a running tally tracking every dollar you’ve ever spent on your account. Here’s how to see how much damage you’ve taken during Steam sales.

Third-party tools like SteamDB will “estimate” the value of your Steam account based on how much the games you own are currently being sold for. We’re not using those tools here. Instead, we’ll show you how to see exactly how much money you’ve spent on Steam—down to the cent—without any third-party tools.

To find this information, open Steam and click Help > Steam Support.

How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games

Click “My Account” on the Steam Support page.

How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games

Click “Data Related to Your Steam Account” at the bottom of the page.

How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games

Click “External Funds Used” in the list here.

How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games

You’ll see three numbers here:

  • “TotalSpend” is the total amount of money you’ve spent on this Steam account. This is the number you’re looking for.
  • “OldSpend” is the amount of money you’ve spent before April 17, 2015. (This was the date “Limited User Account” restrictions for people who haven’t spent at least $5 on Steam went into place.)
  • “PWSpend” is the amount of money you’ve spent on a Perfect World account, according to IGN. Perfect World Entertainment is a Chinese online gaming company that operates Dota 2 and CS:GO in China.

It’s not a controversial thing to say that gaming is an expensive hobby. Even with the deep discounts we often see in Steam sales, PC games can still cost a lot of money over time. One way to ease the burden of buying new games is by sharing your Steam library with others through a feature called Steam Family Sharing. Here’s how to set up Steam Family Sharing along with some limitations you should be aware of before you start sharing your Steam library.

How to set up Steam Family Sharing

First of all, even though the setting is called Steam Family Sharing, you aren’t limited to only sharing your Steam library with family members. The feature is meant to be used on shared machines, but there’s no verification process to prove that you’re actually related to the people you’re sharing your games with. Perhaps that’s an obvious thing to point out, but we figured it’d be good to get that out of the way first thing.

Getting going with Steam Family Sharing is simple enough, but first, Valve requires that you turn on Steam Guard before you can start sharing your Library. You can do that by opening the Steam client, selecting “Steam” in the upper-left corner, then “Settings,” and finally “Account.” On that panel, you’ll be able to set up Steam Guard, which uses the Steam mobile app to provide verification codes when you attempt to log in from an unrecognized device.

How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games

While Steam Guard is necessary for Steam Family Sharing, everyone with a Steam account should turn it on regardless of whether they’re sharing their libraries or not. If you’ve had your Steam account for a long time, you’ve probably spent a decent amount of money on games, so securing your account with two-factor authentication via Steam Guard is a no-brainer.

Once Steam Guard has been turned on, you can set up Steam Family Sharing on other machines. Log into Steam on the laptop or desktop you want to approve for Steam Family Sharing, then once again head into the Settings panel but this time select “Family” from the sidebar instead of “Account.” Click the box next to “Authorize Library Sharing on this computer” and select the local users you want to share your library with.

How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games

The people you’re sharing your library with need to have Steam accounts of their own and they need to be associated with the machine you’re enabling sharing on. Valve says that you can enable Family Sharing on 10 different devices and share your library with up to 5 different accounts, so you and five friends can share your libraries with one another and expand your PC gaming horizons together.

What are the restrictions of Steam Family Sharing?

” data-medium-file=”https://cdn.slashgear.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/12/steam-1280×720-1.jpg” data-large-file=”https://cdn.slashgear.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/12/steam-1280×720-1.jpg” loading=”lazy” src=”https://cdn.slashgear.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/12/steam-1280×720-1.jpg” alt=”Steam logo by Valve” width=”1280″ height=”720″ srcset=”https://cdn.slashgear.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/12/steam-1280×720-1.jpg 1280w, https://cdn.slashgear.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/12/steam-1280×720-1-768×432.jpg 768w” sizes=”(max-width: 1280px) 100vw, 1280px” />

Of course, you’re not granting friends unlimited access to your library with no strings attached. Valve’s FAQ on Steam Family Sharing tells us some of the limitations of this feature, and they’re obviously weighted on the side of the person who actually owns the library in question.

When you decide to share your Steam library with friends, you’re opting to share your entire library minus any games that don’t participate in the program. There are no picking and choosing specific games here – when you add a machine and its users to your Steam Family Sharing lineup, those users will gain access to all of your games.

While many games on Steam are eligible for Family Sharing, some of them aren’t. Valve says that games which “require an additional third-party key, account, or subscription in order to play cannot be shared between accounts,” so you’ll have to find some other way to convince your friends to give Final Fantasy XIV Online a try.

Users with whom you share your library must be online in order to play your games. Libraries can only be used by one person at a time, and the account holder always has access to their games. This means that if an approved users is playing one of your games via Family Sharing and you begin playing a game, that user will be kicked. According to Valve, they’ll be given a few minutes to purchase the game and continue or save their progress and quit.

Finally – and this is very important – you should only share your library with users who won’t cheat or conduct fraud while playing. If someone cheats in a game protected by Valve Anti-Cheat (VAC) while playing your library, Valve says that your “Family Library Sharing privileges may be revoked and your account may also be VAC banned,” making it clear that you should only share your library with trustworthy individuals.

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Did you know you get points on Steam every time you buy a game? Learn what Steam Points are and how to use them.

If you have not purchased a new game on Steam in a while, you may not know about Steam Points. Or maybe you just ignore the points that you earn when you spend money on Steam.

Either way, Steam points are the backbone of the Steam rewards system. They deserve some introduction and explanation. Here’s what Steam Points are and how you can spend them.

What Are Steam Points?

The online game marketplace and streaming service Steam offers some free games for download and play. However, most of the games on Steam cost money.

When you purchase content on Steam, you get reward points called Steam Points. For every dollar you spend, you get 100 Steam Points added to your account. You can’t convert Steam Points to money but if you want to think in terms of “Steam Points to dollars,” you could think of a single Steam Point as one cent.

So, what can you do with Steam Points? You can’t exchange them for money, but you can “spend” these points on items available in the Steam Points Shop.

How to Get Steam Points

There are a lot of ways to accumulate Steam Points. Buying games for yourself is probably the most obvious. However, you also get Steam Points by buying games for other people.

Keep in mind as well that Steam sells game soundtracks and other downloadable content. These also earn Steam points so, when you purchase a soundtrack or other DLC pack, you’ll earn Steam Points here too.

As you may have pieced together, how you use Steam has a huge impact on how quickly you earn Steam Points and trade them in for on-platform rewards.

If you mainly play free games on Steam, it’s hard to rack up points. Meanwhile, the newest AAA release might cost $60 or more, amounting to thousands of Steam Points in a single purchase.

How Not to Get Steam Points

Unfortunately, not all Steam transactions generate Steam Points. For example, buying a Steam digital gift card doesn’t earn you any Steam Points.

It would be nice to see Steam give away free Steam Points if you have an account problem or complaint like some stores give away in-store credit. However, for now, it seems like just about the only way to earn Steam Points is to buy games and downloadable content on Steam.

How to Get Steam Points for Free

There is one way to get Steam Points for free, and that is to be gifted Steam Points by another user. When you leave reviews and engage with the Steam community in other ways, other Steam users can use their Steam Points to award your interaction. This gives you a special badge, and some free Steam Points.

Where to Use Steam Points

You can only use Steam Points in the Steam Points Shop. You can’t use them on other game platforms. You may also wonder if you can use Steam Points to buy games. Unfortunately, at this time, you cannot.

So what can you use Steam Points for? Before you know what to do with Steam Points, you need to know how to check how many Steam Points you have.

How to Check Steam Points

Maybe you knew about Steam Points, maybe you didn’t. But, you’ve been buying games on steam for a while, you’re intrigued by the Steam Points shop, and you want to know how to see how many Steam Points you have.

It’s easy when you know where to look. Whether you access Steam in your browser or in the app, you access Steam Points from the same easy-to-find location.

From the launch page, click Points Shop from the banner at the top of the screen.

Explore everything unlockable with Steam points through the menu on the left side of the pane. Steam also displays your point balance in the upper right.

What Can You Do With Steam Points?

The screenshot above is the landing page for the Points Shop. Scrolling down reveals Featured Items. These are new or seasonal additions that Steam is promoting at the time but may not be of the greatest interest to you.

The top two items in the menu under Featured Items are more personalized to you. These items are Items From Games and Community Awards. If you’re a long-time fan of Steam unlockables, these sections will feel familiar to you. Most of them are just updated versions of the Steam Trading Card system.

From the Items From Games page, select Filter By Game from near the top of the pane to open a menu of participating titles. Unfortunately, not all games and developers have content available.

All the items under Profile Items in the menu on the left are unlockables that personalize your profile. Backgrounds, avatar frames, and badges introduce you to other Steam Community members and show off your stats.

Everything under Chat Items are emoticons and stickers unlockable for use in Steam’s on-platform chat feature. Seasonal Badges really just show off how much money you spend on Steam, so they may not be for everyone.

Seasonal Profiles are essentially bundles of features. This is a convenient way to jazz up your profile quickly, but you also need to renew them monthly, calling for a near-constant flow of Steam Points. If you don’t regularly spend a lot of money on the platform, saving up for those unlockables that you really want is a better investment.

Profile Showcases help display achievements earned in games rather than in the shop. Gamer stats and achievements are not new to Steam, but Steam limits the space for displaying them on your profile. Purchasing profile showcase upgrades with Steam Points expands that on-screen trophy case.

Awarding Community Engagement

As mentioned above, you can also use your Steam Points to award other Steam Community members for their contributions. To do this, select the Award button on a comment. From there, you can select how many Steam Points you want to spend on the award (from 300 to 4800) depending on how valuable the comment was to you.

How to Redeem Steam Points

When you find an item you want, click it to display a preview of how unlocking that item will affect your profile. If you like it, and you have enough Steam Points, click the box displaying the cost of the item in the lower right corner of the pane.

Are You Stacking Steam Points?

Steam Points represent a step in the evolution of the company’s rewards and achievements system. They add an extra level of customization, which many gamers love (let’s not forget how crazy people went for cosmetic hats in Team Fortress 2) as it allows you to make your player character your own.

Because Steam Points are unlocked by spending money, some rewards that they unlock just brag about how much you spend on video games. However, some unlockable Steam Points content is a genuinely cool way to show off your gaming skill and style.

If you’re not happy with the Steam title you just bought, you need reimbursing. Here’s how to get a Steam refund.

How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games

Jon Jaehnig is a freelance writer/editor interested in exponential technologies. Jon has a BS in Scientific and Technical Communication with a minor in Journalism from Michigan Technological University.

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How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games

How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games

Much is made of the fact Dota 2 is a free game but you’d be surprised to know how much the average player has actually spent on cosmetics, tickets or compendiums and BattlePasses. I recently posted on Twitter asking people to share how much they’d spent in-game as I thought cashing out $471 was already a ridiculous figure but I found the results were mind-boggling.

Thanks to all my followers, feel less guilty now. I thought $400 on Dota2 cosmetics was a lot but it’s a pittance compared to some of you 😀

— Lawrence / Malystryx (@MalystryxGDS) 10 July 2017

How can I check?

How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games

To check how much you’ve spent approximately is simple. Go to your Steam profile page by clicking on your player icon in your friends list and then click on “Badges” on the right-hand side.

Scroll down to Dota and above your badges there is a clickable link entitled “how do I earn card drops”.

Be warned once you click this you will find out approximately how much you’ve spent and you may not like to see the numbers. If you want to work out how much you spent per hour simply divide the amount by the number of hours you’ve played. That may or may not make you feel better. N.B. The amount only includes in-game purchases it does not include items sold or bought on the Steam Marketplace.

How much have you spent?

Divide the number by hours played. Tell us the result in the comments!

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How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games

Connect family members’ devices through Microsoft Family Safety to enable activity reporting and gain insight into their online habits. This feature allows family organizers to view certain web, search, app and game activity of another family member. This information is accessible through a web browser or the Family Safety app. You can also opt into receiving weekly emails that detail family members’ activities on Microsoft Edge, Xbox and Windows devices. Organizers can only view activities from connected devices .

Enable activity reporting

Note: This task can only be completed by a family organizer.

Open the Microsoft Family Safety app.

Tap the family member account you would like to enable activity reporting on.

Tap Settings. Turn on Activity reporting toggle.

Visit family.microsoft.com and sign into your Family account.

Find your family member and click Overview.

Scroll down to Activity Settings > Activity reporting > On.

View activity reporting

Open your Family Safety app.

Find your family member and tap their name. Switch between Today and Last 7 days to view their daily or weekly activities.

Note: To receive weekly activity reporting emails, turn on Email me weekly reports toggle.

Visit family.microsoft.com and sign into your Family account.

Find your family member and click Overview.

Select the category you would like to view reporting of: Screen time, Apps and Games or Web and search.

Note: To receive weekly activity reporting emails, turn on Email me weekly reports toggle.

Activity reporting features

Apps and games

In Apps and games, view which apps and games your family member has been using and for how long. If you use content filters to block age-inappropriate apps and games, those will also be listed.

Tip: On Xbox, remind your family member to sign out if they leave the console. Activity is reported while they are signed in, even if others are using the device.

Web and search

Web and search activity include websites your family member visited and terms they searched for using the Bing search engine. If you have enabled web and search filters, any attempts to visit blocked websites will be shown as well.

Note: Activity reporting only includes web and search activity when a member uses the Microsoft Edge browser while signed into their Microsoft account.

Screen time

Screen time reporting shows daily and weekly details about when and for how long your family member used their devices. Gain insight into the amount of time your family member spends on a particular social media app, game or web browser and decide whether you would like to enable screen time limits for any connected devices.

To view screen time for a family member, tap Today, then Screen time > Devices.

Building your collection of video games has never been easier than it is today with Steam. As one of the most popular digital distribution platforms on PC, there’s a good chance a game you’re looking for is available on Steam.

Gone are the days of waiting in pre-order lines or buying discounted games in their physical form. With the click of a button, you can be playing your new game in just a couple of minutes.

With all that time saved, you might start to wonder how much time you’re actually spending playing these games. For some people, that number might be a little higher than they expect.

Luckily (or not), you can see your total hours in Steam – here’s how.

How to See Total Play Time of a Game on Steam

Steam tracks the number of hours you’ve spent playing each game in your library. Here’s how to find your total hours spent playing any game in your Steam library:

Desktop

  1. Open the Steam client on your PC and sign into your account.
  2. Click Library in all caps at the top of Steam.
    How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games
  3. In the menu at the left, click any game in your library to select it.
    How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games
  4. Now at the right, look for Play Time to the right of the play / install button. This is your total hours spent playing this Steam game.
    How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games

Mobile

  1. Open the Steam mobile app and sign into your account.
  2. Tap the Hamburger menu icon in the upper left corner and select Library .
    How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games
  3. Scroll down to the game you’re looking for. The hours you’ve played will appear to the right of the game, under its name.
    How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games

How to See Total Hours Spent Playing All Games in Your Steam Library

Unfortunately, Steam does not keep track of your total hours across all games, but there are third party websites that can calculate this for you.

You need to make sure your profile is public though, as these tools need to be able to see your Steam profile. They work by looking at your Steam profile and counting the play time of each game. You simply put in your Steam profile ID or URL and it does the counting for you!

We’ll show you how to set your Steam profile to public below. You can always set it back to private when you’re done!

  1. Open the Steam client on your PC and sign into your account.
  2. Click your Account Name , to the right of the Community tab at the top of Steam, to go to your profile.
    How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games
  3. Click the Edit Profile button at the right under your Steam Level.
  4. In the menu at the left, click Privacy Settings .
    How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games
  5. Change both My Profile and Game details to Public .
    How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games

Now that you profile is public, you can use any third party website to calculate your total hours playing Steam games.

SteamTime or SteamDB are both great third party websites that do exactly that. SteamTime focuses more on the hours you’ve “wasted” on Steam while SteamDB will show you more details about your account such as estimated value.

To use either tool, simply input your Steam ID or Profile URL and hit Enter on your keyboard. Here’s how to get your Profile URL and Steam ID:

  1. In Steam, click your Account Name , to the right of Community at the top of Steam, to navigate to your profile.
    How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games
  2. Right click anywhere on your profile and select Copy Page URL .
    How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games

Your Profile URL will be copied to your clipboard. It will look something like the below.

By Matthew Hayes – June 19, 2018 11:01 am EDT

How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games

A new tool let’s you see exactly how much money you’ve spent on Steam games over the years. Not scary at all. You don’t have a spending problem, right? And you’re certainly not addicted to video games. The World Health Organization just classified “Gaming Disorder” as a serious mental health condition, but that has nothing to do with you, or with us, right? Time to prove it!

If you click on this link (thanks PC Gamer), you’ll be taken to a sign-in page. Don’t worry, this is totally safe. Once you log in there, you’ll be taken to a screen that shows you how much you’ve spend on Steam over the years. Key renewals for games you got from sites like CD Keys, or Humble Bundle, will not show up here. This is used strictly for calculating the money you’ve spent through the Steam Store itself, or else by filling your Steam wallet.

How does yours look? Do you have over a decade of expenses towering thousands of dollars high, or are you a console gamer with $62 spent on Steam for that one AAA game that your computer couldn’t actually run? I suspect that many of you fall somewhere in the middle. I myself got a pretty modest return. Here’s what my spending looks like:

How to see the money and time you’ve spent on steam games

Over the past eight years, I’ve spent about $250 on games on Steam. I was pleasantly surprised! If you saw my Steam library you’d swear I had hit at least $1,000, but almost all of my games are purchased during Steam sales, and a huge chunk of my library are new arrivals that came in the form of Humble Bundle keys and review copies. Admittedly, I also do most of my gaming on consoles.

Not all of my peers have been so frugal. A quick perusal through this ResetEra thread will reveal that users spending thousands of dollars are not uncommon. When you consider that many people have been buying games on Steam for over a decade, and many of those people are PC gamers primarily, it makes sense. A few hundred dollars every year on new games will add up, and boy does it add up.

So what does your ledger look like? How much money have you spend on Steam? Join the conversation below and own up to your spending in the comments section! Let’s see if we have any big spenders among us.

By Zoe Kleinman
Technology reporter, BBC News

It generated a big debate about whether parental controls are sufficient, how much responsibility lies with mum and dad – and the ethics of encouraging young players to spend money within games and apps.

Following the BBC’s report, deputy Labour leader Tom Watson tweeted calling for “tighter regulation” in gaming, saying there were “considerable fears that gaming is a gateway to gambling”.

This alarming case of children racking up huge debts on FIFA highlights considerable fears that gaming is a gateway to gambling, with boys and girls hooked in at ridiculously young ages by loot boxes. The case for tighter regulation is overwhelming.https://t.co/vuMl5mNHTZ

Damian Collins, chair of the DCMS select committee, which is currently investigating technology and addiction, told the BBC he believes the issue is “a real problem”.

“I think there should be an obligation for the company to warn people about suspicious activity, like large increases in spending, just as banks warn their customers about unusual transactions,” he said.

Here are some of the stories you shared with us.

My son spent ВЈ3,160 in one game

I have a 22 year-old disabled son, who has cerebral palsy, complex epilepsy, autism, learning difficulties and the approximate cognitive ability of a seven-year-old child.

He is unable to do any bilateral activities so relies heavily on his iPad and PlayStation for entertainment and educational activities.

He has recently been playing a game on his iPad called Hidden Artifacts which involves finding various items and matching them to the description.

He has been charged ВЈ3160.58 between 18 February and 30 May 2019, clearing out his entire savings.

I contacted iTunes, who were extremely helpful but were unable to refund the amount and suggested I contact Blastworks Ltd, the app developer and game provider. [Under European rules, Apple users in the EU can request to cancel an order within 14 days of purchase].

I have phoned and emailed several times but have had no response.

It is extremely distressing that vulnerable people, such as my son, become victims of what is thought to be an educational game.

I have tried tirelessly to recoup his life savings but constantly come up against a brick wall.

W hen Cathy Hackl’s son wanted to throw a party for his 9th birthday, he didn’t ask for favors for his friends or themed decorations. Instead, he asked if they could hold the celebration on Roblox. On the digital platform, which allows users to play and create a multitude of games, Hackl’s son and his friends would attend the party as their virtual avatars.

“They hung out and played and they went to other different games together,” she says. “Just because it happens in a virtual space doesn’t make it less real. It’s very real to my son.”

The futility of throwing an outdoor pandemic-friendly event in January wasn’t the only reason Hackl’s son lobbied for a digital event. Roblox might be unknown to many over the age of, say, 25, but the 13-year-old platform is booming. Available on most desktop and mobile platforms, it is simultaneously a venue for free games, a creation engine that allows users to generate new activities of their own, and a marketplace to sell those experiences, as well as side products like outfits for a personalized avatar.

It’s also part of the “metaverse.” Once a niche concept beloved of tech enthusiasts, the idea of a centralized virtual world, a “place” parallel to the physical world, has careened into the mainstream landscape this year, as epitomized by Facebook’s decision in October to rebrand as Meta. Millions of people are spending hours a day in virtual social spaces like Roblox and Fortnite. Interest in purely digital ownership—and the technology that proponents believe can ensure the security of persistent virtual experiences—has spiked dramatically, with non-fungible tokens (NFTs) and cryptocurrencies making headlines. Virtual productivity platforms are growing too, with Facebook and Microsoft announcing new ways to collaborate online. Nike is even, analysts say, preparing to sell virtual sneakers. Hybrid offices, video-based education and online social communities are just a few of the ways in which more of our lives—for better or worse—is spent in digital spaces.

People like Hackl have already been heading in that direction for years.

After she was introduced to VR in the late 2000s, Hackl says she “pivoted really hard” into it. She reoriented her media career toward cinematic virtual reality work and then moved onto work with headset manufacturers, eventually serving as a “VR evangelist” for the HTC Vive headset. Today she says she’s known as the “godmother of the metaverse.”

For many younger people, like her son, such a pivot isn’t even necessary: they’re growing up with the expectation that a large part of their future will exist in the metaverse. It might be time for the rest of us to get on board—whether we like it or not.

Metawhat?

The word “metaverse” is often traced to Neal Stephenson’s 1992 dystopic, cyberpunk novel Snow Crash, and many see a more recent inspiration in the dazzling warren of experiences at the heart of Earnest Cline’s 2011 novel Ready Player One. However, the metaverse is far from the stuff of sci-fi. It’s not even new.

Online communities have existed since at least the mid-1980s, and grew in the 1990s with chatrooms, AOL instant messenger and the first social media sites. The game World of Warcraft became a persistent social scene for millions in the early 2000s, and communities have continued to sprout up within and around games. Today, logging onto Fortnite, joining a chat with friends over a console platform and launching into a game with them is, especially to younger generations, just as social an experience as most other physical interactions.

Whether in virtual reality (VR), augmented reality (AR) or simply on a screen, the promise of the metaverse is to allow a greater overlap of our digital and physical lives in wealth, socialization, productivity, shopping and entertainment. These two worlds are already interwoven, no headset required: Think about the Uber app telling you via location data how far away the car is. Think about how Netflix gauges what you’ve watched before to make suggestions. Think about how the LiDAR scanner on newer iPhones can take a 3D scan of your surroundings. At its core, the metaverse (also known to many as “web3”) is an evolution of our current Internet.

“You’ve got your goggles on, 10 years from now, but they’re just a pair of sunglasses that happens to have the ability to bring you into the metaverse experience,” says John Riccitiello, CEO of Unity, maker of a video game engine that is increasingly used to develop immersive experiences on other platforms. “You’re walking by a restaurant, you look at it, the menu pops up. What your friends have said about it pops up.”

For Riccitiello, the most exciting part of the metaverse is what it might mean for our relationships.

The idea that we might be able to “feel like we’re together when we’re not,” he argues, could likely lead someone to create a company on par with Facebook and Apple.

Banks and investors are taking note.

“There’s clearly a kind of a desire to move that direction,” says John Egan, CEO of L’Atelier BNP Paribas and an investment analyst focusing on emerging technologies. “This metaverse concept gives us the opportunity to create any universe that we’ve ever imagined.”

More than a social network

Hackl’s son wasn’t alone in having a birthday party on Roblox over the past year; the 16-year-old creator of the Roblox game Math Obby, who goes by the username 0bid0, threw himself a party to which he invited not just friends from school and Twitter, but also fans of the game. “I couldn’t manage to make plans in real life because of the pandemic, so I took the chance of building a cool place to host the virtual event,” he tells TIME.

Kids are not the only ones wading out into the metaverse breakers. Paul Tomlinson, 41, has worked remotely for years, living in rural Maine with his family and managing tax and financial-processing software for a firm that works with municipal and state governments. There’s “nothing sexy” about the job, he says, but it does involve needing to have eyes on a large amount of data at once. A few years ago, this meant his desk had four different computer monitors on it. The cumbersome office setup was already a difficult and messy solution, but add in a disruptive (but adorable) cat and it became untenable.

Tomlinson had always been interested in virtual reality, but it wasn’t until he tried the Oculus Quest headset and was introduced to a productivity app called Immersed that he found the answers to his work conundrum. Immersed pairs with your computer and, in the headset, sets up a workspace that allows for multiple virtual screens that you can arrange or size in whatever way you choose. And, crucially for Tomlinson, it’s very difficult for cats to mess with virtual desktops.

“Within a week, I took the monitors off of my desk,” he says. “It just made my life so much better.”

For more than two years now, he has almost exclusively used virtual reality for his 40- to 50-hour work weeks: “Unless it’s a business-critical meeting, I typically don’t take off the headset.”