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Following very close on the heels of the Steam “Exploration Sale”, Valve's second big sale of the holiday season is already gearing up to get underway. The Steam Winter Sale will commence on December 18th, next week.

The news came spilling out of a fully loaded thread on /r/Games, where gamers clamored in to find out if the news was legitimate. Supposedly the sale will start on December 18th of this year when an image leaked from Japan indicating the start date. The image can be viewed below.

There's really no confirmation on the legitimacy of the image and there's no source for the image itself, but most people in the thread are concerned with what sort of games they plan on buying and what bundles they're looking forward to the most.

Some talk about Metal Gear titles permeates the thread, along with the usual suspects such as Borderlands.

The Steam Winter Sale opens up a lot of possibilities for grabbing well recognized games as well as some titles you may not have heard of at all. The thread creator mentioned that they're planning on buying Counter-Strike: Global Offensive and Trials Fusion. I've kind of had some waverings on buying Ubisoft games after they started forcing people to use that gosh-awful Uplay. It really is one of the most cumbersome launchers in the history of launchers. That's not to mention that sometimes it doesn't always connect properly and you have to sometimes deal with Uplay specific patches that keeps you from playing your games when you want – it's a mess. Nevertheless, Trials Fusion looks like a really awesome game and it's easy to see why the thread creator would want to get their hands on it.

Previously, Valve had a nice stash of games up for sale just a few weeks ago during the “Exploration Sale”, which was basically the name of the fall sale that Valve usually rolls out for Steam.

For those who don't know, the reason people usually get excited about the Steam sales is because some games have ridiculously low prices. Games can go on sale sometimes up to 90% off. It's a usually glorious time for gamers to grab all their favorite titles with various discounts made available across a wide spectrum of titles. During the last sale Bohemia Interactive pulled a rather unique move of actually upping the price of the standalone of DayZ. I wonder what sort of shenanigans we can expect this time around?

Steam has been around for years and the sales seem to get better with each passing season. That's not to mention that more publishers are deciding to publish their AAA titles on the platform, enabling gamers to get their hands on titles that were previously only available on home consoles.

The sales tradition for Valve and their digital distribution platform will commence this winter starting December 18th. You might want to bookmark that date so you'll know when things get underway and you can start purchasing games that suit your tastes... or just because they're dirt cheap.

You can learn more about Steam by paying a visit to the official website.