I've never used Steam.

Several years ago it was necessary to pay for as many copies of the game as many people were expected to join the LAN party - otherwise the games would refuse to connect with each other. Is this still necessary on Steam?

I'm thinking about purchasing the Civilization V for Linux to play with my wife.

I don't intend to play over the Internet.

2 Answers 2


It depends on the game.

In the case of Civilization V, you will only need one account if you want to play over LAN. You will have to login on both computers using your account. However, you might have to run Steam in offline mode on your wife's computer after logging in. To do this, look for the "Steam" menu at the top left, and click on "Go Offline".


Rokk answered your question about Civilization V, but I will expand on the subject because your question was general about all games.

Some games allow you to play in Offline mode over LAN. Some will allow you to play over the internet as well. Other games are more tightly integrated with your Steam account and their multiplayer presence requires Steam authentication (and therefore being online). Some examples of these games include Valve's Source multiplayer titles like CS:GO. Finally, some games offer multiplayer on the same computer such as split-screen or co-op. So it really depends on the game, but a good thing to look for is how well the game is integrated with Steamworks services.

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