The Steam Lunar New Year sale may not ring a bell to you. That’s because it wasn’t one of the Steam Sales listed in 2017. However, it was one of the smaller sales in 2016. According to Steam Database, a third-party program designed to monitor the statistics in the Steam Client, there will be a Lunar New Year Sale from 15 Feb to 19 Feb.
They posted this tweet recently:
The next @steam_games sale is Lunar New Year Sale and will run from February 15th to 19th.
Thanks to Steam Direct, it now takes less than 5 hours for that information to leak.
— Steam Database (@SteamDB) January 23, 2018
How Do These Sales Keep Leaking?
There are a number of different ways these Steam Sales dates can leak. In 2015, the Winter Sale was leaked by PayPal. In 2016, it was leaked by inside sources. This time, according to this tweet, it’s leaked by Steam Direct. What is Steam Direct? If you remember the Steam Greenlight programme, it’s basically the revamped version of that. In halfway through 2017, Steam decided to completely replace the Steam Greenlight programme.
This was due to the multitude of completely broken and incomplete games slipping through the system. And though there were a few successes: Stardew Valley, for instance, the number of horrible games that were “Greenlit” was too great to go unnoticed.
Valve decided to put their foot down and thus Steam Direct was created. Unlike Steam Greenlight, Steam Direct has a digital paperwork vetting process and a fee of $100 for each game the developer wants to put up. This does well to dissuade people from throwing their games in the pit just for laughs and get money out of it.
Though it’s still unclear how Steam Direct is responsible for the leak. But if I had to guess, the developers involved in the Steam Direct programme are given a heads up about the sales and word travels quickly when people start passing the information around. Eventually, someone with a platform gets a hold of it and the dates become public knowledge. That’s my theory, at least.