Family Sharing Free DLC Restriction
So upon the urging of Steam support (and my ticket being closed), I am now continuing my one man crusade against this bizarre restriction here as well :steamsalty:.

In the interest of full transparency, and because I've already said everything before. I will just be posting pictures of all the pictures/proof that I shared with Steam support. Also yes I'm lazy, and don't want to type all of this again haha.

The general gist for anybody not wanting to see the entire discussion explosion below, is that basically. Even though you can share games with somebody through Family Sharing including paid DLC, you cannot for some very odd reason share free DLC. It just won't download. Which leaves no alternative if you want it, but to buy the game for free DLC. Which is obviously asinine as hell.

Be warned: These pictures contain text, and lots of it. If you or a loved one are squeamish at the sight of a wall of text. Look away now. You have been warned.

https://imgur.com/a/0h48F7B

I made an album with all the images there should you wish to see what I'm fully talking about. And best case scenario, get empassioned and contact Steam as well to get this ridiculous restriction removed.

Thanks again to the support and Obsidian that tried to help me with this. And not to attack the support saying it's not possible, but as you can see. It very much is possible for Steam to remove this restriction. So here's hoping something comes of this.

Thanks for your time everyone, and especially to those that go through all the images. Hopefully the developers really do frequent here, and they are willing to do something about this.

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OTHER THREADS
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This is a spot to list recent threads that are also dealing with this issue. I will update this as I can find any. If anyone finds one that isn't listed here, then please let me know and I'll add it.

Going to try and limit it to about a month or so old threads at the time of posting. Not going to delete threads that become over a month old.

The intent is for people to potentially post on these threads, so that they gain visibility and activity. Because the more people talking about this feature the better.


Total War: Warhammer 2 thread: https://forums.totalwar.com/discussion/237303/free-dlc-in-total-war-warhammer-2-still-does-not-work-with-family-share#latest

Another Total War: Warhammer 2 thread: https://steamcommunity.com/app/594570/discussions/0/1850323802587172453/

Monster Hunter: World thread:https://steamcommunity.com/app/582010/discussions/0/1814296273128472471/

Another Monster Hunter: World thread:https://steamcommunity.com/app/582010/discussions/0/1814296273125457684/

Dead Cells thread:https://steamcommunity.com/app/588650/discussions/2/3726075043723871554/

ARK: Survival Evolved thread: https://steamcommunity.com/app/346110/discussions/0/1675812484336267437/

Another ARK: Survival Evolved thread: https://steamcommunity.com/app/346110/discussions/0/1735463620096552878/

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POTENTIAL FIX
----------------------
So! Good news everyone! I tried @DarkStarSword's idea, and at least for Pillars of Eternity II: Deadfire, it seems to be working. Thankfully PoEII seems to land in the first column of games, and not the second; I hope that others are as lucky.

And it just goes to show that this isn't a deliberate decision on Valve's part, as it doesn't show that I have the DLC. But the game inside does. I even tried quitting Steam and re-launching it, and it still worked.

For anyone wondering how to exactly do it. This is what I did:

1) Logged onto owner's account and downloaded all free DLC, and launched the game (just to make sure entitlements are applied).

2) Copied the whole game folder (e.g. Pillars of Eternity II)

3) Pasted the whole game folder away from Steam's directory (e.g. from "D:\Steam Games\steamapps\common" to "D:\")

4) Logged onto borrower's account (me)

5) Deleted game folder from "D:\Steam Games\steamapps\common" (replacing takes longer than just pasting)

6) Copied the game folder from 2 (D:\)

7) Pasted that game folder into "D:\Steam Games\steamapps\common"

8) Launched Pillars of Eternity II: Deadfire. Success!

So things seem to be working, as I had access to the Drunk stance, Critical Role portraits, and the game itself said they were installed (little icon in bottom left). Hopefully this is actually a way to "fix" what I consider a bug with Steam's Family Sharing. Unfortunately I assume that any future free DLC, will require this whole process again. But at least it's something.

Thanks again to @DarkStarSword for this find. Once the turn-based update fully releases for PoEII, I'll be able to play with all the free DLC available seemingly. Which is nice.

At least there's a partial light at the end of a tunnel that shouldn't have been dug.

Hopefully this helps others who read this.

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GAMES IT WORKS FOR
----------------------------------
  • Pillars of Eternity II: Deadfire

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GAMES IT DOES NOT WORK FOR
------------------------------------------------
  • Monster Hunter: World
  • Resident Evil 2 / Biohazard RE:2
Last edited by Drone456; May 5 @ 1:08pm
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Showing 16-30 of 65 comments
Drone456 Feb 18 @ 6:15pm 
@pxfbird: Yeah it's ridiculous. And this is why "they want you to buy it" isn't a good excuse. Because he can get access to the deluxe DLC, but not the free DLC? How can that be anything other than an error. Or a legacy design decision, before they had Family Sharing. And somebody just hasn't taken the time to fix this.

A developer shouldn't have to patch free DLC into their game, just to circumvent an asinine restriction in Steam. But yes, it would greatly alleviate this headache if they all did it. Unfortunately I don't think this particular blemish is covered much, so most might not be aware of it. And not to threaten Steam, but it's crap like this that makes you want to purchase singleplayer games on GoG instead.

Just curious, did Capcom get back to you at all? Wondering how they handle this, and what their response would be.

@JaCKaL: You might be right. and that would suck. Which is why I'm hoping that the noise I'm making right now, at least gets some attention. Ideally from a charitable developer at Valve. Because it does need to change, as its existence serves no purpose.

I probably wouldn't have made near as big a stink if I wasn't missing out on such (in my opinion) substantial content, from the free DLC for Pillars of Eternity II: Deadfire. So I can understand why most people might not be upset, nor even seeking it out. However, regardless of the amount or substantiation of the free content on offer. It really shouldn't be blocked, when the paid counterpart, and the actual game itself, are not.

Also sorry that this affected you as well at some point. Sucks man.
pxfbird Feb 19 @ 11:28am 
Originally posted by Drone456:
Just curious, did Capcom get back to you at all? Wondering how they handle this, and what their response would be.

I haven't heard from Capcom yet, but I will update after I do. I included a link to this thread in my update on the ticket. If you'd like, I'd be more than happy to send you screenshots of my ticket with them (and response when I have one). Also, with Steam Support.
If Steam developers are unable to solve this bug, could you just make it so every free dlc actually costs 1 cent, so we can circumvent this bug ?

This bug has been going on for years now, many games.
Drone456 Feb 19 @ 6:28pm 
@pxfbird: Thanks for the offer man, but you don't need to provide your screenshots if you don't want. As I don't think I'd be able to do anything with them. However, if you just want to share your experience in this thread as well, so that Valve or others can see. Feel free to do so. Also if you wanted, you could start your own thread on this issue. Because the more voices the better. If not I also understand, because a mega thread can be useful as well.

Yeah please update here when you get Capcom's response. As I am genuinely curious if they fix anything. And if they do, that just further proves that this isn't a design decision. I also just hope you get assistance on this, as I don't care about the costumes myself. But if you wanted them, it would suck to be stopped because they're free. It's like not being able to take a free sample at a grocery store, because they ran out of toothpicks. Just doesn't feel great haha.

Thanks for linking my thread as well. The more official eyes on this, the better. Appreciate it.

@Crash [LV]: The more I keep talking about this bizarre restriction, the more upsetting and just backwards it seems. The fact you can't share something, because you can't pay for it. But you could, if you could pay for it. Makes entirely no sense. The fact, that your suggestion would actually fix this frustrating "feature", just goes to show how absolutely ridiculous it is.

At least there's a light somewhere, in that if enough developers got wind of this. Perhaps they'll just start including those free DLC's into the base game. Quite frankly, I'm not sure why they don't already. Unless it's only for people with data caps, or some arcane certification process, that this circumvents. Otherwise, it's not like anyone is worse off for having them in their game. If you don't want the new costumes for RE:2, or the plethora of Pillars of Eternity 2 free DLC. Then just don't use it. It only serves to expand your game, for free.
Originally posted by DarkS474:
Originally posted by The Living Tribunal:
This isn't apple.

And what that would mean? Really?
Why Valve can't do the same as Apple with its own family sharing?
If Apple managers aren't so afraid to lock family sharing why are Valve ones so obsessed that customers would cheat and not buy ? Was Apple hurt sales wise by its true family sharing that allows full sharing of apps and games in a family group? No, it wasn't. On the contrary the Apple App Store kept increasing revenues year after year and customers satisfaction did the same as well. And still Apple DRM and control over apps and games with its own strict rules is well known and they disallow adult content while Valve allows it. So why are Valve managers not allowing true family sharing features? What are they so afraid of? They gave more freedom than Apple on many things but at the same time they put locks that don't have any meaning to exist anymore in fear of some customers cheating that would -- they think-- lead to lower sales? The Apple App Store case is proof that family sharing doesn't hurt sales. There is no better proof than that. If it works for Apple it can work for Valve too. Period

Because again, this isn't Apple. Valve does what valve does, apple does what apple does.
pxfbird Feb 20 @ 6:14pm 
Originally posted by Drone456:
Yeah please update here when you get Capcom's response. As I am genuinely curious if they fix anything. And if they do, that just further proves that this isn't a design decision. I also just hope you get assistance on this, as I don't care about the costumes myself. But if you wanted them, it would suck to be stopped because they're free. It's like not being able to take a free sample at a grocery store, because they ran out of toothpicks. Just doesn't feel great haha.

I received the following response from Capcom:
"Hello Tisha,

Thanks for contacting Capcom USA Customer Support. We're sorry to hear you've had issues with the '98 costumes for Resident Evil 2. This does look like it may be on Steam's end with the way they let users access free DLC through family sharing. We will gladly forward your information to the appropriate teams at Capcom to see if anything can be done about this, but unfortunately no promises can be made. We apologize for the inconvenience.

Best Regards,
CAPCOM Customer Support
For the latest news and information from CAPCOM, please visit us at Capcom-Unity."

I replied back asking them to also pass on that this issue has been fixed in other games by the developers contacting Steam. I had already mentioned this in a comment on my ticket, but I want to make sure that info gets passed along. We'll see if anything gets done on it, but I may contact Steam Support again with Capcom's response.

I love your analogy of the free sample at the grocery store. lol
Last edited by pxfbird; Feb 20 @ 6:15pm
Drone456 Feb 21 @ 12:55pm 
@pxfbird: Thanks a lot for sharing.

Actually surprised that they identified the problem so quickly, and that you got a real message. Since Capcom is quite a large company. Also nice that they forwarded to their teams, so hopefully you can get your issue resolved. Especially considering they were the same company that tried charging for demos. This is a big step haha.

Glad that something is happening on that end, and hopefully Capcom bugs Valve/Steam. And they end just changing this as a whole. Not holding my breath, but at least it's a popular game, from a big company. At least has some potential.

Thanks a lot for pursuing this as well by the way. It helps to have more people bugging Steam, and these companies to get this issue finally fixed. I'm hoping that other people also are doing this, and start wanting to post in these forums or wherever else. I think Valve/Steam are fine with changing this, but just don't know that people really care about it at all. So the more people that pester them, the more they know it matters. Or at least I would assume anyways.

I love your analogy of the free sample at the grocery store. lol
Haha thanks :steamhappy:
Just log in to their account, download the dlc then switch back.
Drone456 Feb 25 @ 9:57am 
@Chonchy: Thank you for the suggestion, but that's actually one of the first things I tried doing. Which is how we discovered it was somehow a restriction on my account with free DLC. As I originally thought it might have been a bug with my Steam, or my computer.

Tried downloading it on my computer, and even launched it on his account (it worked). But wouldn't on my account. And tried doing this on his computer (still worked for him), but wouldn't for me. Which is why this is so ridiculous. If there was at least a semi-easy workaround, that would be manageable. Still bizarre, and should be fixed, but manageable.

But the way it stands now, I can only play free DLC if I bought the game. Which is all sorts of levels of asinine, and I think I would die a little bit inside if I did this haha.

@Anyone: To anyone reading this that feels strongly about this issue. Could you please make sure to post here with your desires on this to Steam/Valve? That way this thread can maintain a front page status, so Steam/Valve constantly notice it (without me having to bump eventually). Or even start your own threads, that way the front page is taken up by threads similar to this. So Steam/Valve have to notice it, and know that people want this changed.

Also please do anything else you feel comfortable doing to share this issue (or thread, or your thread), so Steam/Valve can notice it. Such as Twitter, Facebook, Petition, Reddit, etc. Or official game threads for the game you're experiencing this on (such as I did for Pillars of Eternity II).


Pillars thread for posterity: https://forums.obsidian.net/topic/102056-free-dlc-restriction/

Thank you very much to anyone that does this. Feel free to post here if you do any of this, so others can engage with your method if they feel comfortable. I'll make sure to link anyone in the OP, so that your method can also gain some visibility. And so if Steam/Valve notices this thread, they can see how many people are trying to get this solved.
Last edited by Drone456; Feb 25 @ 9:58am
pxfbird Feb 27 @ 8:43am 
Originally posted by Chonchy:
Just log in to their account, download the dlc then switch back.

I have the RE:2 Remake Free DLC downloaded and working in my account. That was the first thing I did. My boyfriend (that I Family Share the game to) still can not access it on his account, which is unfortunate because he wanted to play using those costumes. Only the Deluxe DLC works for him.

Steam and Capcom both admitted that this is an issue in Family Sharing.
Last edited by pxfbird; Feb 27 @ 8:44am
Drone456 Mar 9 @ 10:26am 
Updated the main post with a spot for other threads to hopefully add visibility to them, and hopefully create a symbiotic effect. I hope Steam doesn't see this also as spam...

Also stumbled upon this post from @DarkStarSword, giving a possible workaround to this issue (will try it at some point). And understanding as to what's happening. Here's his post (hopefully he doesn't mind).

Originally posted by DarkStarSword:
It looks like their are two types of "free DLC" - one type that contains files, and one type that does not (presumably some cases may be a combination of both).

The type that only contains files can be made to work by downloading the game while logged into the owner's account, making a copy of it, logging back into the borrower's account and if Steam removes the files just restore them from the copy (there are other ways to achieve the same result, but this seemed the simplest to explain).

The type that does not contain any files, but rather where the game just checks if the player owns the DLC via the Steam API is a bigger problem - because there is no way* to get the Steam API to tell the game that the free DLC is owned by the borrower's account.

* I'm a programmer and I'm sure I could get around this if I really wanted, but that doesn't help anyone else - better to have this issue fixed in Steam itself.

This was taken from his thread: https://steamcommunity.com/groups/familysharing/discussions/1/3561682880011995250/

I would have posted there. But apparently necro posting is considered spam (Steam is pretty lenient with this rule seemingly), and I don't know what the cut-off is for "necro-ing". So hopefully he's alright with me taking his words here.
Last edited by Drone456; Mar 9 @ 11:02am
Drone456 Mar 23 @ 4:26pm 
So! Good news everyone! I tried @DarkStarSword's idea, and at least for Pillars of Eternity II: Deadfire, it seems to be working. Thankfully PoEII seems to land in the first column of games, and not the second; I hope that others are as lucky.

And it just goes to show that this isn't a deliberate decision on Valve's part, as it doesn't show that I have the DLC. But the game inside does. I even tried quitting Steam and re-launching it, and it still worked.

For anyone wondering how to exactly do it. This is what I did:

1) Logged onto owner's account and downloaded all free DLC, and launched the game (just to make sure entitlements are applied).

2) Copied the whole game folder (e.g. Pillars of Eternity II)

3) Pasted the whole game folder away from Steam's directory (e.g. from "D:\Steam Games\steamapps\common" to "D:\")

4) Logged onto borrower's account (me)

5) Deleted game folder from "D:\Steam Games\steamapps\common" (replacing takes longer than just pasting)

6) Copied the game folder from 2 (D:\)

7) Pasted that game folder into "D:\Steam Games\steamapps\common"

8) Launched Pillars of Eternity II: Deadfire. Success!

So things seem to be working, as I had access to the Drunk stance, Critical Role portraits, and the game itself said they were installed (little icon in bottom left). Hopefully this is actually a way to "fix" what I consider a bug with Steam's Family Sharing. Unfortunately I assume that any future free DLC, will require this whole process again. But at least it's something.

Thanks again to @DarkStarSword for this find. Once the turn-based update fully releases for PoEII, I'll be able to play with all the free DLC available seemingly. Which is nice.

At least there's a partial light at the end of a tunnel that shouldn't have been dug.

Hopefully this helps others who read this.
Last edited by Drone456; Mar 23 @ 4:43pm
Drone456 Apr 1 @ 11:27am 
Forgot to put that fix that @DarkStarSword provided on the main page. Also added another thread to the other threads location.

@pxfbird: Just wondering if anything else has developed on your end. Specifically did you talk to Steam support with Capcom's reply? Curious what they would say if you did. If you hadn't, and don't want to anymore, no worries. But thought I'd ask.
pxfbird Apr 1 @ 4:13pm 
Originally posted by Drone456:
@pxfbird: Just wondering if anything else has developed on your end. Specifically did you talk to Steam support with Capcom's reply? Curious what they would say if you did. If you hadn't, and don't want to anymore, no worries. But thought I'd ask.

Unfortunately, I don't have any update. I haven't contacted Steam again yet. Was going to, but got busy. lol I will definitely comment here again if anything new happens. Or if I come across a fix.

As a side note, I had tried DarkStarSword's fix before I came across your thread and it didn't work for RE2:Remake. I may try it again, though, because I didn't copy the entire folder. Just the files I was pretty sure were the DLC costumes. Currently, I'm playing Sekiro, but I'll get back in RE2 this week and try that. I'll update this afterwards in the hopes it can help others. ;)
Si-Fi Apr 1 @ 4:29pm 
Have you tried the switcheroo with cloud disabled by any chance?
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