Steam Networking: Friend Invites

One of the things we wanted to get ready before the Steam Early Access release is the system that allows you to invite Steam friends to a game session, rather than having them connect through IP Let's take a look at that!

As most of you probably know, connecting to IP sometimes causes a lot of issues, forcing people to deal with port forwarding, Hamachi or other messy solutions to something which should be very easy. Now that we have implemented steam networking, you'll (hopefully!) be able to invite anyone on your friendlist without all that hassle!

In order for this to work smoothly, we have made a new interface for the multiplayer lobby: 

In the menu to the left, there's now an invite button. Selecting it will open up a list of everyone on your friendlist that is currently online and owns the game. Under their name, there's a status icon and text indicating what they're currently up to: if they're busy, away, online, playing something else, or looking to play Secrets of Grindea. Selecting anyone in this list will send an invite for them to join you in the lobby.

You may also note that there's a new option available in the menu to the left: "Drop in". This lets you control who can join the game once you've started your game session and left the lobby. Selecting no will make it impossible to right click your name and chose join game, while if you choose yes, anyone on your friendlist will be able to join by doing so, including friends of those you have invited already.

Hopefully this will make things easier for your multiplayer adventures! These updates will be patched into the game in the coming days, so stay tuned and help us hunt all the bugs, please~ :)
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  1. Neat! So you can only organize multiplayer this way with people on your friends list, then?

    In some other games on Steam they have it so you can have a server browse to choose available games from. In others, you can go to the profile of a person and - even if they're not on your friends list - you can try to select 'Join Game' to enter their game. It's a lot more secure than adding a bunch of people to your friends list or posting your IP publicly. :)

    I hope Steam automatically adds that profile 'Join Game' functionality, since I see it in Magicka and Awesomenauts.

    Also liking the new loot system there that I see.

    How long will those of us on the Frontlines have to bugtest this new hosting system? I can't wait to bash it about. :)

    1. I actually don't know if the 'join game' thingy will appear for people outside of your friendlist! It's possible it will, and that it's automatic like you said :3

      As for server lists, it's possible we'll add one later, since some people ask for it a lot, but it's not a priority right now.

      The patch with these updates should go live tomorrow if nothing weird happens to delay us! :D