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Cutting Game Install Size Guide



Back in 2013 I wrote a guide covering ways to maximize storage space. Mostly this was some of the general stuff you can delete on your computer, like temporary files and old driver installers, and also ways to move files and folders to other drives such that the programs relying on them would not notice. Now I am back with some tips and tricks that are a bit more targeted at reducing the space video games use. A number of recent game releases are very large (I currently have one game taking up 105 GB, before doing any of this stuff) so finding ways to cut into that could be very useful, and in some case it might be very surprising how much space you can recover.

I cannot stress this one point enough: messing with game files can break the game in part or completely. Do not permanently delete any file until you know the game will function without it. In the case of the other method I have for shrinking game installs (I do not want to reveal it just yet), it can be undone easily enough, but in some cases (I can only name one) you may want to have Steam verify the game cache or otherwise reinstall the files.

We will be visiting the folders games are installed in for this, and I am just going to reference where they are for Steam, since that is the dominant PC game platform. Within Steam's install folder is the "steamapps" folder and within that is the "common" folder. All of your games are installed in this "common" folder, unless you have set up a custom library location. If you have done that, then you probably already know where Steam puts your games, and can find them for other platforms as well.

To just go directly to the folder, you can Right-Click on the entry in your Steam Library and select Properties. This will open a new window and you want to enter the Local Files tab and then click "Browse Local Files" to have an Explorer window open for the install location. The button to "Verify Integrity of Game Files" is also in the Local Files tab.




  1. Cutting Game Install Size Guide - Introduction
  2. Cutting Game Install Size Guide - Safe Files to Remove
  3. Cutting Game Install Size Guide - Compacting Files
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