How to get the biggest discounts on PC games at the Steam summer sale

If you're into PC gaming, now is the best time to buy

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This is the best time of the year for PC gamers, when you can score massive discounts (70% to 90%) on popular PC games. It's Steam's annual summer sale, running today through July 22nd--but not all of the discounts are as equally compelling.

My fellow writer at Lifehacker, Alan Henry, put together this guide for scoring the best deals during the sale. Among my favorite tips are these instructions for when to pull out your credit card and pull the trigger on a game you've been eyeing:

Don't buy a game unless it's a daily deal or a flash sale. You may be tempted by one of the general store discounts, but don't do it. Those titles will likely go further on sale somewhere before the end of the week, and you'll miss out on a deeper discount. If your favorite game doesn't go on a daily deal or a flash sale before the end of the sale, you can pick it up on the last day at the same discount that it got on the first day—you'll just know that's as good as it's going to get.

If you miss your favorite game as a daily deal or flash sale, do not buy it anyway. The last day of the Steam Sale is almost always an Encore Sale, where the most popular daily deals and flash sales come back at the same discounts. That's when you get to buy whatever you missed—or whatever else you may want.

I'm not a big PC gamer (we play console games mostly here), but I already see a few titles friends and family would enjoy or I might want to try while taking much needed productivity breaks. With these steep discounts, I already feeling my willpower wilting...

Read more of Melanie Pinola’s Tech IT Out blog and follow the latest IT news at ITworld. Follow Melanie on Twitter at @melaniepinola. For the latest IT news, analysis and how-tos, follow ITworld on Twitter and Facebook.

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