Can You Play Steam Games Offline?
Yes, you can play play games on Steam offline, unless you're trying to play online multiplayer games! I've personally tested that while not having an Internet connection, you can freely open and play games from Steam.
The only thing that must be done while being online is to be logged in with your account to play games in the Steam offline mode. If you try to open a game without being logged in beforehand, the client will ask you to log in, and you won't be able to do it as you're offline! So make sure you click on "Remember me" when logging in to Steam to save account credentials to play offline.
Even without an active Internet connection, you can still click on the Library tab in the Steam client to see and access your games. So freely go ahead and play the best Steam games if they don't require an active Internet connection themselves! However, if you're online there's also the Steam offline mode you can turn on to play games offline.
How to Turn On Offline Mode in the Steam Client
The Steam offline mode will make the client think and act as if you don't have an Internet connection when in reality you do. Even if you don't, it's good practice to turn on this offline mode when you try to play games without WiFi. With that in mind, here's how you can turn on the Steam offline mode:
- Launch Steam
- Click on the Steam logo at the top left corner
- Select "Go offline..." to enable offline mode
- At the bottom side, it should say "Offline Mode"
For purely online games, I've tested this offline mode with the "VRChat" game. There, the game required a login identification through Steam, which didn't work because my account was considered offline! Though logging in through a different in-game account will work. With this in mind, if the online game requires a Steam login identification, it can't be played multiplayer.
There's nothing you can do in the Steam offline mode as you're only able to play games. All your games will be shown in your library so you can play offline. You'll even appear offline to your Steam friends! If you try to download a game, you'll be hit with an error.
Can You Launch Steam Games Without Steam?
Unfortunately, you can't play games on Steam without them launching the Steam app. But this doesn't mean you're not able to play games without an Internet connection, as the Steam client does function offline with access to the Library. But if you're in the Steam offline mode, you won't be able to remove games from the Steam library!
And that wraps up everything you need to know on how to play Steam games offline. Unless the games are online, they should easily open without the Internet if you're logged into Steam beforehand. Make sure you also update Steam so playing games without an Internet connection runs more smoothly!