Steamworks Documentation
Themed Sale Events
We occasionally organize themed sale events designed to showcase certain categories of games. These events will have specific criteria for eligibility, and a process of invitation, registration, and discounting. Each of these events will be promoted on the homepage of Steam and organized into event-specific sub-categories. Note that a discount is not required to participate in these events, though the event page will most prominently feature discounted games.

Themed Sale Events Eligibility & Invitation Process

Each themed sale event has different eligibility built around the core theme of the event. The description should give you a pretty good idea of what games will be included in the event, usually determined by the primary mechanic of the game. For each event, we will be selecting and inviting eligible games where the primary theme or mechanic of the game is in alignment with the theme of the sale.

Selection process
  1. Our selection team will start by pulling a list of games with the related tags applied to them. To make sure your game is considered for invitation to a themed sale, please make sure the store tags on your game are both truthful as to the content of your game and match the theme of the sale you are considering. For example, to be considered for the Racing sale, games need to have the racing tag applied to their game store page. To be considered for the JRPG sale, a game must have the JRPG tag.
  2. Some games have a particular mode, or portion of the game that matches a theme. However, in order to be eligible, a game must be primarily about the theme. For example, an adventure game with a racing mini-game in it would not be eligible for the Racing Sale. So, our selection team will be filtering out games that are not built around the primary theme of the event.
  3. From the resulting list of eligible games, we will send email invitations to the developers associated with each game. This will go to users with "Receive Steamworks Communication" permissions set in Steamworks.
  4. Developers will have typically six weeks or more to register for the event and enter any desired discounts.

Event Visibility & Promotion

These themed sale events will be promoted on the homepage of Steam and on a dedicated sale page for the duration of the event. The event may also be promoted through Steam social media channels and in the pop-up marketing message. Event visibility can depend on the current schedule of Steam promotions, but some examples of possible marketing visibility include:

Steam Home Page TakeoverUpdates and Offers
Home Page TakeoverUpdates and Offers
Sale PageTakeunder Banner
Sale PageTakeunder Banner
Marketing MessageSteam Social
Marketing MessageSteam Social

Additionally, a game participating in a themed sale event typically will have an event banner applied to its store page for the duration of the event. If your game is participating in other events simultaneously that also have store page banners for the respective event, which banner is displayed will depend on the hierarchy of events, which is currently set to:

  1. Developer Sale
  2. Publisher Sale
  3. Third Party Sale
  4. Steam Themed Sale Event

Product Page Banner
Product Page Banner

Game Visibility Within Each Event

Each themed sale event will be organized into sub-sections relevant for the theme. Some games may fit neatly into multiple sub-sections, while others may only logically fit into a single subsection. We'll do our best to balance the event and ensure that most games have a few logical sections where players would expect to find the game.

Within each section of the sale page, games may be sorted in ways based on player interest and popularity, while other sections may be more random.

We cannot guarantee specific featuring or positions within each event.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q. Can I participate in a themed sale with my unreleased game?
A. Each themed sale event may function a little differently, but for the most part, unreleased games are welcome to participate.

Q. Will there be a place for players to discover games with playable demos?
A. Each themed sale event may function a little differently, but for the most part, demos are welcome to participate.

Q. I don't see a themed sale that applies to my game. How can I participate?
A. If you haven't yet seen a theme or genre that matches your game, stay tuned. We'll be hosting these events regularly moving forward to continue shining a light on many of the interesting themes and genres available on Steam.

Q. My game would fit neatly into more than one of these sales. How do I choose?
A. You'll need to pick the right event based on your game and the timing that works best for your plans. In some cases your game may be eligible to participate in more than one sale without conflict. In other cases, you'll have to choose between two events that are close together.

Q. My game should be a fit for a themed sale event. How do I make sure I get an invitation?
A. First, check the theme of the sale and make sure your game is tagged with relevant tags. For example, games for the "Racing Sale" will be selected from games tagged with "Racing". Second, make sure your account has 'Receive Steamworks Communication' permission within your Steamworks partner account.

Q. How do I get an invite if my game got missed?
A. If invitations have already gone out and you didn't receive one for a game that should fit in an upcoming sale, please contact us here.

Q. How can I ensure I receive the relevant communications about these themed sale events?

In Steamworks:
  • If you are a member of multiple Steamworks partners, make sure you have the correct partner selected at the top of the Steamworks website.
  • Ensure you have at least one account with "Receive Steamworks communications" enabled. You can edit per user here: Note that accounts with this permission setting must also have completed or must newly complete the additional confirmation request sent via email authentication in order to fully enable permission.

In the Steam Store:

If you prefer to remain opted out of all communications, you may still participate in these themed sale events. However, the only indication of your eligibility for both the event overall and for the media permissions opt-in (if your game has been selected for potential inclusion in our official marketing materials as described above) for each event will be to check for the opt-in(s) on your base game's App Admin page (in the Marketing Tools & Data section). You can do so by inserting your appID at the end of this URL:<appID>