Valve has updated Steam’s Discovery Queue to allow filtering of certain categories as well as specific tags.
The new customization options can be accessed by going to the Discovery Queue and clicking on the “Customize your queue” link directly above the “Next in queue” button. Three checkboxes allow customers to exclude three categories of product: Early Access Products (games that are still in development), Software (non-gaming software such as audio engineering software), and Unreleased Products (pages for upcoming software or games that have a Steam page but are not yet available). All three options are checked by default.
Aside from filtering out these categories, you can now also tailor your queue by excluding products based on their tags. Tags are created and applied to products on the store by users.
The purpose of the Discovery Queue is to help you find new games you may be interested in, so naturally it excludes certain titles under other circumstances. You won’t be shown any games you already own or have on your wishlist. Items that were previously showcased in your queue will not repeat. The queue will also ignore any title that you’ve flagged as “Not Interested.”
The recent update to Steam’s Discovery Queue is the latest addition to the store’s improvements made last year in the Steam Discovery Update. An analysis of the changes made to Steam’s storefront showed a 30% increase of page views for titles on the Steam Store with 75% of that increase directly attributable to the Discovery Queue.
I rarely use the Discovery Queue as I generally have a pretty good idea of what new games I’m looking to buy. The new options are nice, but I question the utility of the tags system. Valve has, in my opinion, undermined its utility by excluding tags that would be useful such as Console Port. Furthermore, the tags are applied by users and are subjective choices so you risk missing out on something by using tags in this way. If anything, that’s a criticism of how Valve has handled the tags system – this update just shows another way where its utility is weaker than it could be.
What do you think of the change made to the Steam Discovery Queue? Do you feel it will make the tool more useful for you or is it still lacking in important features? Do you think the ability to filter by tags will be helpful considering how they are applied by Steam’s users? Let us know in the comments below!