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Steam launches new background gameplay recording and sharing feature into beta

Valve is expanding Steam’s already teetering tower of built-in features with a new background gameplay recording and sharing system that’s available in beta now.

As detailed on Valve’s Game Recording beta page, Steam’s new suite of console-like video features begin with two distinct recording modes. A Background Recording mode continuously saves gameplay to a preferred drive – users can set duration and storage limits – while an On Demand Recording mode enables users to start and stop recording as they choose.

A new timeline feature and player-added event markers are intended to make it easier to find key moments (achievements, screenshots, and in-game events in supported games can also auto-generate markers if desired) and recordings can be clipped using new “lightweight” tools.

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There’s also a redesigned Recordings & Screenshots interface where users can edit and share footage, and a one-click sharing option for posting video into a chat session with a friend or to the world at large. Valve says recordings can easily be transferred to another device – Steam Deck to PC, for instance – and temporary links to MP4s can be sent via the Steam Mobile App or a QR code.

And finally, a new Replay mode is accessible from the Steam Overlay in every game, enabling users to quickly jump back through their recent gameplay. “Useful for things like seeing what went wrong when your hero died,” Valve notes, “or recalling something mentioned by an NPC earlier.”

Steam’s new Game Recording system – detailed more thoroughly here – is currently available in beta for all users, and developers can access a new SDK and API. To explore the new features, Steam users should go into Settings > Interface > Beta Participation then select either Beta option. Background or On Demand recording can then be enabled via Settings > Game Recording. Expect a public release after Valve has ironed out any kinks.

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