It's nice to stick to one's principles and all, but it seems pretty silly to complain about the fact that Steam is simply present in the whole equation, rather than complaining about any real fault with the program itself. Until I'm presented with a concrete example of identity theft/baby seal clubbing/etc because of Steam, I don't see how it is a bad thing. It is a small, user friendly program that only intrudes upon your computing experience to tell you about awesome sales or new releases; if that irritates you for some reason, you can always change the settings so it doesn't open when you turn on your computer. All this "you don't own games you buy on Steam" mumbo-jumbo is ridiculous. Of course you own them, you just access them through Steam as opposed to a CD. If you get a new computer, simply download steam and reinstall all of your games. In fact, you own your games so hard you can never give them to someone else. This is a problem for many people, but it's easily solvable. Only buy games on Steam you know you want to keep. I recently broke out my old copies of Icewind Dale 1 and 2; still love playing them, glad I bought them, am not going to sell them. True, they aren't on Steam, but the same holds for all the Total War games I DO have on Steam. If you aren't sure you want to keep a game forever-ever, rent it first. Or, if you really have to own it now but might sell it later, get a physical copy. Maybe it's just me, but I don't buy games now to try to make money later; I buy them to play the poop out of 'em. Besides, used games really don't sell for much these days. Now, if you happen to hate Civ V and wish you could get rid of it, then I suppose Steam did kinda screw you over. Fortunately, I continue to enjoy it, especially with all the new patches, along with the copy of Civ IV that I'm never going to sell. Also, there is no problem with offline mode. You need an internet connection to get Steam in the first place, so it is a very simple matter to make sure that you've allowed Steam to save credentials onto your computer. Heck, I think that's the default setting to begin with.