The increasingly strict controls surrounding Steam gifts have been further tightened.
A new set of restrictions has been introduced relating to games that feature Valve Anti-Cheat Technology (VAC). Valve has announced that players will no longer be able to add VAC titles to their inventories, preventing stockpiling of such games.
This would sometimes be done so users could dish them out as gifts to chums. However, some players would also hoard games so as to dish out copies to dupe accounts should they be banned for cheating. And therein lies the problem.
As a result of this, Valve has introduced a further restriction – should a user gift a game to another who is subsequently banned, then the initial user will be prevented from ever giving away that particular title again.
Valve's reasoning: When a user is caught cheating, their Steam account is banned from playing multi-player on secured servers. This creates an incentive for people who cheat to stockpile copies of games on one account and to gift them to low value accounts where they can continue cheating.
We've taken these steps to ensure the integrity of the multi-player experience for those participating in online gaming communities. We understand that the restrictions on buying to inventory may be inconvenient for some legitimate users, but we believe that these steps will reduce the number of cheaters you'll play against. And that's important in having an online gaming experience that's fair and enjoyable for everyone.”
Steam introduced a number of gifting restrictions last year in an effort to combat fraud.