How to appear offline on Steam – Guide

Steam possesses a lot of social or online features, one of which is the ability to see whether your friends are online at any given time.

You can only view this from within the Steam platform. Likewise, your friends will also be able to see whether you’re online when they’re on Steam.

Steam will classify you as being online if you have the client open, even if the app is only open in the background.

You don’t have to be playing any Steam games in order for the client to give you the online status. So, it’s a good idea to know how to switch to an offline status instead.

How to appear offline on Steam – Quick Guide

You may wish to hide your presence when using Steam, for whatever reason.

You may not be feeling particularly social, or wish to avoid social distractions whilst on Steam. Fortunately, there are ways to appear offline whilst being on Steam.

There are a few different methods for appearing offline on Steam. We’ll cover a few of these methods in this article.

Go Invisible

The first method for appearing offline on Steam is by enabling invisible mode. First, open the Steam client and click the ‘friends & chat’ option in the bottom right corner.

This should cause the chat window to appear. If you’re not currently logged into chat, it will prompt you to sign in. Click the ‘sign in’ option and you should be automatically logged in.

In the chat window, there should be an arrow next to your profile name. Click on the arrow.


A list of options should now appear. Click the ‘invisible’ option.

You will now appear as offline in Steam. You will still be able to access chat and other online features in Steam.

Go Offline

Another method for appearing offline in Steam is by enabling offline mode. There are two main ways of doing this.

Chat Settings

The first way to enable offline mode is through the chat settings. Access the chat feature by clicking the ‘friends & chat’ option in the bottom right corner.

Beside your profile name should be an arrow. Click the arrow, and then select the ‘offline’ option.


You are will now appear as offline in Steam. Beware that choosing to enable offline mode in Steam will actually cause you to go offline.

You’ll still be able to play games and use other offline features, but you’ll be unable to access any of the online features. This includes friends and chat features.

Steam Settings

The simpler method for enabling offline mode is by using the Steam settings, which you can access from the drop down menu at the top of your display.

Obviously, you won’t be able to play with friends online when you enable this mode, though you can switch it off at any time (unlike the common Steam network friends unreachable error, which stops you from chatting with your friends even when you want to!).

Open your Steam client, and click the ‘Steam’ option in the top left corner. A list of options should appear.


Click the ‘go offline’ option to enable the mode. Once you’ve selected the ‘Go Offline’ option, the Steam app will prompt you to relaunch the client. After relaunching the client, you’ll automatically be in offline mode.

You should now appear as offline in Steam. Remember that enabling this mode means that you no longer have access to any online features. This includes friends list, chat, achievements, Steam cloud, and badges.

However, you will still be able to play Steam games as long as they’ve been updated to their most current version prior to going offline.

Related: How to Refund a Steam Game

Therefore, you should make sure that the games you wish to play have been updated before you enable offline mode.

You can update your Steam games by launching them. Any updates available should automatically be downloaded during the launching process.

If a game has not had its most recent update prior to going offline, it will be unavailable to you. Once you’ve gone offline, the Steam app will stop checking for updates.

This means that you don’t have to worry about needing any further game updates after going offline. The games accessible to you will remain accessible to you whilst offline.


In conclusion, there are two main methods for making yourself appear offline in Steam.

You can either enable invisible mode using the chat settings, or enable offline mode. You won’t be able to chat with friends, both in the Steam client on whilst you’re in overlay mode.

See Also: Steam Overlay not working

Enabling invisible mode allows you to continue accessing online features, whilst offline mode prevents you from using such features. You can enable this using the chat settings, or do so from the Steam settings.

Photo of author

Connect: Twitter



I love reading, writing, drawing, and other creative pursuits. I wish to travel more and do extreme activities, such as bungee-jumping and skydiving. I'm a casual gamer with an affinity for narrative-driven games and unique art styles. I like watching a variety of different media, but I particularly enjoy animations and musicals. My favourite genre, for both books and visual media, is psychological-thriller.

Read more from Jenny

Apps UK
International House
12 Constance Street
London, E16 2DQ