Has your Steam client updated recently? If so, welcome to Steam Family Options, Valve’s answer to parental controls.
Those with a use for such features can now breathe a sigh of relief. Family Options, while still in need of improvement, allows users to place restrictions on Steam’s content. Be it the online Store, Community section or individual games themselves, all of it can be locked behind a four-digit PIN.
- Log into the account that will be used.
- Go to View > Settings and select the Family tab.
- Select Manage Family Options.
- Follow instructions provided and enter PIN.
- Family Mode is now enabled, signified by the logo in the top-right.
At this point you might be asking where advanced options are. Well there aren’t any. Suggestions and bug reports are welcome on the discussion board but Valve tends to take their time when implementing things.
Spending limits can easily be substituted by Steam Wallet funds, rather than leaving payment information behind; it’ll help reinforce the idea of managing budgets too. However, remote management is out of the question without a way of creating parent-child connections. You’ll have to mutually agree on time limits and what-not, but please be mindful of things like multiplayer sessions and saving. Oh you might want to talk about online behavior too.
Family Sharing has also been updated for two-factor authorization as a result. While it’s easy to set-up, don’t forget that it’s also severely limiting – only one user may access the library at a time.