Apparently, Steam doesn’t Want my Money (Or Yours Either)

Apparently, Steam doesn’t Want my Money (Or Yours Either)

My confidence is shaken.

My brain and heart are screaming internally, attempting to convince myself I have value. It isn’t working. I’m focusing on the negatives. How did I never notice this much was wrong with me? No wonder I’m alone, sitting here in front of this computer, rejected by someone so dear. I’m not getting any answers, however. Instead, I’m left wondering.

Why won’t Steam take my money?

I’m sorry, did you think this was going to a darker place? Feh, if you want to see me being a sad sack, follow me on Twitter. (Fresh material coming soon! Good seats still available!) No, this is about a recurring issue with Steam that leaves you questioning your own value. In fact, I bet I can repeat five words that will make your entire body shudder. Ready?

“An unexpected error has occurred.”

So few words, yet so ominous. Words an average Steam user can come across many times, as well. You’re making some purchases on the site. Your credit card, which you know is good, or your Steam Wallet, definitely full, is ready. The steps are cycled through. The payment page appears. You agree to the terms and click. That’s when it hits.

“An unexpected error has occurred. Your purchase has not been completed. Please contact Steam Support.”

I’m a gifter. If I see a silly, cheap game on Steam, I’m going to send it to at least ten of my closest friends. This means every Steam sale, I get that message. Twice a year I have to wait a few hours or even a day, sometimes missing the deal completely. The issue typically resolves itself, but it’s frustrating.

Except this time, the problem hasn’t found a magical remedy on its own. Squishy the Suicidal Pig went on sale for $0.14 last week Friday. This delighted me. A ridiculously cheap game with positive reviews! A token gift I can dole out to the people I care about, which will hopefully make them smile. The first ten went out without a hitch. I took care not to send them out in a huge cluster. One every five minutes to people who had been recipients of my digital affection before.

The eleventh copy was the one. Ironically, I almost wasn’t going to send it. My best friend tends to play on consoles more, so I hesitated. I did it anyway, and that was the game that doomed me.

“An unexpected error has occurred. Your purchase has not been completed. Please contact Steam Support.”

I tried the usual tricks. I went on a different browser. I tried using the Steam client to make the purchase when I arrived home. I googled it, as I google the message every time it happens. The fact that so many people also regularly experience the problem every day, every year, was little comfort.

Apparently, Steam doesn’t Want my Money (Or Yours Either)

For the first time, I have to wait for Steam Support. I’m trapped in that limbo. It’s been four days, and I pray the lack of response stems from two of the days being a weekend. It’s better than the alternative – knowing I’m one of the people caught in the Steam Support black hole from which few escape.

In the meantime, I’ve found myself going through the varying stages of grief. There was disbelief, when I tried a second purchase in hopes of a different result. Anger, when I was reminded that this is still a common and unrepaired issue. Most recently, there was acceptance. I had to reopen wounds to take screenshots for this diatribe. Of course, nothing has been done to remedy the situation.

Which, in and of itself, is a tragedy. People shouldn’t have to accept such a thing. This shouldn’t even be an issue. If someone has valid payment methods, Steam shouldn’t be spitting error messages back in their faces. If I want to bombard ten or even twenty people with copies of Squishy the Suicidal Pig , that’s my prerogrative.

I just wish I would stop feeling like I’m in the wrong.

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