How To Find Free Games On Steam

This is a tutorial on how to find and download free games on Steam. If you’re familiar with the Steam client store or website, you might know the layout can be incredibly open-ended. I use it every day, and it is one of my most useful resources. This allows for some exploration of methods to filter new games posted. Steam is considered one of the most essential clients for finding new game releases for digital download on PC. It is home to tens of thousands of retail, but also free, games.

This isn’t a terribly complicated process, however, for the Steam client, or website, the interface can be a little layered. Not bad, just slightly hidden! To find free games on Steam, there are a few shortcuts to know. You can use it not only to find free games but also to sort them. This can be based on release date or even genre (also known as tags on Steam.)

Get Free Games on Steam Through the Steam Client

If you do not already have Steam, start by going over to store.steampowered.com and setting up an account. If you already have Steam, skip to the next part. There is a green button in the upper right of the main store page labeled “Install Steam.” Download and install the client. Set up an account, or use an existing one, then follow the steps to verify your account.

Download the Steam Client
Download and Install the Steam Client

Steam has been around since digital game delivery first existed and is considered a pioneer in this type of service. As such, you may already have a Steam account that you’ve forgotten about! You can either set up a new account or go through the recovery process for your old account. Usually, this involves a process of verifying Captcha, or you might just need to verify an email.

At any rate, you should now be logged into your account with the client before moving on to the next step.

Finding Free Games From the Front Page

Next, if you are not already there by default, go to the Steam store page. This is the first section on the client menu and will be denoted by the main page of the client. Steam has many promotional events occurring throughout the year, so if you’re unfamiliar with Steam content, this is a good place to see what it’s all about.

The Steam Store Page
The Steam Store Page

Once, you are in the Steam Store, look for the search box in the upper right of the page. Click the magnifying glass in the corner. I’m not sure why this is how this page is accessed, but it is the quickest way.

Click the Magnifying Glass (It’s tiny!)

Sorting Free Games on Steam

On the right side of the all products page, you are now at, there is a section called “Narrow by Price.” Drag the price slider in the upper right all the way to the left, so that the price range says Free.

Narrow Price to Find Free Games on Steam
Narrow by Price (Slide Left for Free)

It should look something like this:

Free Games on Steam
Free Games!

Okay, you’re almost there. Actually, you pretty much are, but there are a few more tips I have to offer that will make this task a little more rewarding in finding exactly the type of free games you want.

Initially, you’ll only see the most popular free releases in the list of games available. If this is what you wanted, you are done, but I’ll show you how to take it a step further.

Next to the price slide in the upper right, there is a dropdown menu that’s labeled “Sort by.” Click it and change the selection to “Release Date.”

Sort Free Games on Steam by Release Date
Sort By Release Date for Newest Free Games

You should now see a list of all the most recent free games on Steam.

There are a variety of types of free games in this list, classified as either free, free-to-play, or demo. While demos are a type of free game and plenty of fun, they are not typically the whole game and just a preview copy. If you want to try demos, you can find them with this method, but you can also filter out demos as well.

Select Game Type and Narrow By Tag

Below the price slider, look at the sidebar menu that says “Select Game Type.” Click “Games.”

Select Games Only
Select Games to Filter Out Demos

Now, all of the games on the list will be labeled as “Free” or “Free to Play.” Choose something that looks interesting, download it if you wish, and play–or browse through and look at the other games.

You can even sort the genre of games by selecting from the “Narrow by tag” list. This is a fun system in the Steam store interface that allows you to narrow down exactly what type of game you want within hundreds of unique descriptors that games are listed in.

You Can Even Sort By Genre

A small note: some games are listed as either free or free to play, but there is no overall difference between each type of game. The only difference I have found is sometimes free-to-play is a temporary tag, but not necessarily. Free games are invariably just simply free.

A Note About Links That Lead to Games that Aren’t Available

What the Add To Wishlist Button Looks Like in Steam

If you go to a page that says free but it’s actually a closed Early Access or there’s no game at all, this is just a consequence of the game being listed incorrectly. It can be a little annoying if it happens with a game that looks interesting. If you’d like, you can resolve this by adding the game to your wishlist so that you’ll be notified when it’s released.

Have Fun!

That’s all for this tutorial. Potentially, you’ve found this page by watching one of my YouTube videos. If you found this tutorial useful, please see some of my other articles! If you are actually looking for free games that I’ve reviewed, be my guest and go here for my reviewed free games! Thanks for reading MrDavePizza! Enjoy your games.

JoyToKey and How to Keybind Your Controller

This article is about how to keybind your game controller with JoytoKey to play games that require various keyboard keys to play. I use this with browser games on Itch.IO, if there is no native controller support. A lot of platformers and games on Itch.IO and Steam use a keyboard and mouse, but generally, I prefer controller support. Keybinding is a useful ability that can allow you to play more responsively, or even play an indie with your controller–even wireless controllers!

On YouTube

Getting Started with JoyToKey

There are many programs available on the web for binding keys to a controller, but I’ve found JoyToKey to be the easiest, and it is also free. You can purchase a registration key if you wish, but it is not required. The program is classified as shareware, so you are within your right to either use it for free or support the developers with a purchase.

I visited the JoyToKey website today, and my only suggestion about that is to click the right area. This program is safe and free. If you so desire, you can download the game from sites like Softpedia, but I’ll link directly to the JoyToKey download page here to support the developers.

Setup Steps for JoyToKey

JoyToKey download
Download JoyToKey from one of the first three links
  1. First, download JoyToKey from the JoyToKey website.
  2. Click one of the download links in the area below where it says “Download the Latest Version”
  3. Follow the Setup instructions and then open the program.
JoytoKey Install
Follow the on-screen instructions to install

Tip: Make sure that your controller is connected before setting up a new JoyToKey profile. If you are using a Bluetooth controller like the Xbox One controller, make sure it is connected wirelessly. This will help you let JoytoKey highlight which button you want to bind in yellow and make it A TON easier to know which button you’re binding.

What to Configure

Most keyboard-controlled games will use some variation of the directional keys, left down up, and right, or WASD. This can vary, but not much. Aside from a few variations for action or jumping keys, that usually sums it up. Note, that I do not cover integrating mouse support in this tutorial, but it is also possible using JoyToKey by pressing to highlight and then, configuring the analog stick directions on your controller.

Make sure your controller is connected

As an example, I configured the keys for a game called Ducksoup Dungeon by developer Richard Lems on ItchIO. I’m using this game because I am familiar with the controls from my review of it. Many browser games on Itch.IO say what keys to use right on the front page. Here the controls are directional, plus the keys D, and F for jumping and combat.

To configure a button, find it on the button list and double-click. A window will come up that says “Assignment for:” etc. This is where you choose your key. So for example, I want the up button on my Xbox One controller to trigger the up arrow key on my keyboard. I enter it into the yellow area.

Almost There

It might help to play the game with the keyboard first to decide how you want to lay out the keys on your controller.

Ducksoup Dungeon
Ducksoup Dungeon on Itch.IO

For me, I’m binding the directional keys for the keyboard to the directional keys on my controller. Then the D to my X-button, and F to my A button. This is a natural type of layout for games that already support controllers.

Now Play Your Game With JoyToKey Configured

Playing Ducksoup Dungeon
Playing Ducksoup Dungeon

And look, I’m playing this browser game with my Xbox controller!

If you liked this tutorial please have a look at some of my other gaming tips and tutorials. Thank you for reading MrDavePizza.

Enjoy your games.

Starbound – Completing the First Planet (Quick Guide)

In Starbound, you use Terraria-style mining mechanics to collect materials and progress through the galaxy. This game was released in 2016. It has had some resurgence thanks to a re-release of the game on the invaluable Xbox PC Game Pass platform. I figured since I didn’t find immediate coverage of my own questions, new players may be wondering how to progress in this game. The game takes place in outer space. It has a plotline involving being stranded in space after a cataclysmic invasion destroys the planet. With some basic tools, you’re left to fend for your own. With a damaged spaceship, you escape to the orbit of a wild alien planet. Now that everyone knows the background, let’s get into how to make it past the first planet!

Some Initial Tips on Starbound For Beginners

Your Trusty New–Broken–Ship

You could also compare Starbound to Minecraft, but the storyline is more similar to a combination of Terraria and an RPG. I’ve been wanting to try Starbound from Chucklefish ever since I first learned that it was similar to Stardew Valley.

The initial planet represents the core repeating questline of the game’s open world. Completing it is a good way to set the course for the rest of the game. Thanks to the brief intro of the game at the Protectorate base, you’ll have a useful tool called a Manipulator. It’s kind of like a mix between a mining pick and a phaser. It allows you to mine materials from the inside and collects dirt, ore, objects, and more. This, and your broadsword, will provide what you need to complete the first quest. Collecting core fragments for a special arc temple that will allow you to reconnect with an alien space station.

Currently Orbited World

If you’re already at this stage, you have more or less figured out how to get through the intro. You may want to experiment a bit to figure out the controls before moving on. For starters, the action bar at the top of the page allows you to place items into it. You can then access them quickly with your mouse. By default, your manipulator, magnifying glass, and broadsword will already appear on the bar from the start.

Starbound Action Bar
Action Bar

I recommend grabbing the flashlight out of your ship’s locker as well because it can get quite dark when traversing through the caverns of the planet! Torches also help and are easy to craft using lumber harvested from trees and bits of coal mined from the dirt. Dangling plant matter from the ceiling of caves can also be used to craft ropes, which are helpful when exploring.

Being Careful in Starbound

When you create your character in Starbound, I highly advise you to choose the casual mode for your character. The more difficult settings can be totally brutal. When getting started, survival mode is really not necessary to be challenged by the game.

Additionally, you should act quickly to cook food from ingredients you find along the surface. This will be vital after getting damaged by creatures or accidental falls when exploring. You can also find or craft bandages and health kits, but this might be difficult on the first planet. They are however dropped by several of the creatures around, and inside, the planet.

There are so many strategies and techniques when getting started. It’s kind of excessive to go over all of them, which is why I’m focusing on the basics. The best thing to do when you get started is just explore. See how things work, hoping to find out where the quest is. Do try a few things like harvesting, mining, cooking, and crafting though. This will help you with the overall strategies of the game. It’s also fun.

Finding the First Temple and Mine

The temple is an ancient-looking structure that is easy to find. It’s also where you get your first quest and the first step in teleporting to the next area. Just walk along the surface of the planet until you find it. It might seem like a long distance, but after you pass over the three major hills on the first planet, you should arrive there fairly soon. It’s a big gray stone structure with an open platform. You won’t miss it.

Stabound Arc
The Temple

You will get a quest to obtain 20 core fragments. There are a couple of ways to get them, although overall there is probably only one superior way. Some people suggest mining for core fragments deep below the surface where the rocks are filled with red lava. While this is possible, it can be really frustrating if you spend 20 minutes digging and fall into a pool of lava! Try this method instead. First, ransack the crates through the mining outpost. Next, defeat the big monster in the basement of the mine. I’ll tell you how.

Once again, this is a location you’ll find by walking along the surface. One notable aspect that will help you find the mine quicker is that the entrance is manned by a human. He tells you to check the mine for fragments–well, that was simple, right?

Collecting the Core Fragments

Using your flashlight, torches, manipulator, and sword, make your way through the platforms of the mine. You can move through surfaces underground, by pressing down (S-key) and space bar–a traditional platformer mechanic. Open up the crates with your manipulator and collect as many fragments as you can. Then go after this guy in the lower right corridor. You will have to use the E-key to open the doors.

Starbound Mine Monster
All the boxes behind him are filled with core fragments.

He is a bit tough to destroy in one go. If you are in casual mode, good news: your hit points will still apply even if he forces you to regenerate on your ship. You most likely won’t have enough armor to get away with it in one strike. After you defeat him, collect the fragments and head back up to the surface then to the temple.

Turn in the Core Fragments and Teleport to The Ark

Turn in the Fragments
Turn in the fragments.
Save the teleporter
Teleport to the Ark, and save the teleport location.

And, that’s pretty much it. After being teleported to The Ark, a survival ship with refugees, you have completed the quest. From here, you can save teleporter locations to access your ship and talk to the grand protectorate about the following storyline.

This guide is also summarized on YouTube

Thanks for Reading This Guide, Please Look Around!

This is actually the first guide, or game guide at least, that I’ve written to be totally honest. The pressure to make some has been quite strong for a while, so I decided to make Starbound the game to start with, since it happens to be my current obsession. Check back again for more tutorials, or explore the vast amount of indie game coverage here at MrDavePizza. Thanks!