Valve now allows games with “adult sexual content” on the Steam store. Steam hides these games by default and they won’t show up in search. But you can enable these “adults only” games in your Steam account preferences if you wish.
Yes, Steam now allows adult sexual content
Steam has always allowed certain types of sexual content. Popular games like The Witcher 3 feature nudity and occasional sex scenes, just like an R-rated movie.
Valve traditionally did not allow “pornographic” games. Valve recently threatened to remove games it considered pornographic. After some discussion, Valve decided it didn’t want to be the judge of what is and isn’t pornography, or what the Steam store should and shouldn’t sell.
Erik Johnson of Valve sketch the new policy in a blog post on June 6, 2018:
Valve shouldn’t be the one deciding this. If you’re a gamer, we shouldn’t choose for you what content you can or can’t buy. If you’re a developer, we shouldn’t choose what content you’re allowed to create. Those choices should be up to you…
With this principle in mind, we have decided that the correct approach is to allow everything on the Steam store except for things we deem illegal or trolling. Taking this approach allows us to focus less on controlling what should be on Steam, and more on creating these tools to give people control over the types of content they see.
In other words, Steam now allows games with adult-only sexual content that would previously be considered pornography. Only illegal games or trolling“Are forbidden.
However, Steam hides these game types by default, and they won’t appear in the Steam store, even if you search for their specific name. Instead, you’ll see a message that some titles “have been excluded based on your preferences.”
You’ll still see these games if you link directly to their product pages from another website, regardless of your Steam preferences. You will first need to click on a content warning.
How to Show (or Hide) Adults Only Games
To find this option, click on your name in the upper right corner of the Steam client, then select “Store Preferences”.
You can also go directly to Steam account preferences page in your web browser.
Under Adult Content, check the “Adult Sexual Content” box to display these types of games. Your change takes effect immediately. Come back here and uncheck the option if you don’t want to see these types of games anymore.
You can click “View Product Samples” to see sample games with adult sexual content on the Steam Store. These games will now appear in your searches and recommendations.
The Store Preferences page also allows you to customize your other Steam store preferences. For example, you can hide games with nudity, blood, or other mature content. You can also hide different types of content that you don’t want to see, including software, movies, VR games, and Early Access products.
Steam also lets you filter out up to ten tags, so you can filter out the “anime” tag and never see another anime-style game again.
Steam still allows you to enable Parental Controls. You can block store access entirely or even allow access only to specific games in your library with Family View.
Image Credit: Casimiro PT/shutterstock.com.