Maybe Steam's at the point where they don't need a clever or fun hook. They are huge, bigger than ever.
Previously their focus was on sales and competitive pricing. While they haven't ignored those, now they are putting more effort into Big Picture, the Steam Box thing, Linux, etc.
Not making excuses for the sale not being as exciting, but just trying to look at it from other perspectives. I guess I feel that Steam doesn't have as much incentive to come up with amazing sales or holiday achievements anymore.
Maybe for some... Most of us just go, "Gee... A bargain. Guess I will purchase that."
In games, many if not most of us say, "Good deal. I will buy it... and I have so many games to play sometime around the year 2018 I will get to these".
As for deals.
I bought Witcher and Witchy 2 for $10. Thats a pretty fine bargain (I plan on playing them in 2017).
I bought the Galactic Civilizations 2 Ultimate Edition for scant bucks. While I probably wont get around to playing it before Warp drive becomes standard in every Toyota Prius on Amazon a new copy of this game in its box will run me near $100+. Why? Because the cardboard and manual are considered a valuable part of the Abu Dubai Stock Exchange (apparently).
I bought Portal and Portal 2 for like $9 clams. Someday I might get around to playing them. But, I figured I would hedge my bets. That is to say if a huge leap happens in robotics should they determine that my underwear is offensive to them the fact I own these games might save me from Robo-castration. <--- Could happen to you!
I bought the "X" universe bundle, was like $10 bucks. I have no idea why but I am sure I can come up with something creative. aka: In case the Warp Drive Prius does not mature properly perhaps a liquid fueled Hyundai with a 400,000 horsepower rocket engine might pop along. Sure, cant get as far or as fast as a Warp Drive Prius but who the hell knows what the cost of Dilythiam Crystals might be in comparison to Rocket Fuel (or a gallon of gas) might be in 2017 or 2018? Heck... by then I might need a sail on top of a 1979 Pacer to get around.
I almost bought the SimBin bundle and Nexus (Coolio game, only $3 Clams!)
but for some reason I keep thinking sitting in front of my 26" PC monitor with foot pedals, steering wheel and shifter somehow in the scheme of the universe makes me an inconsistent object.
That is to say as if something greater than all of us is looking over my shoulder saying, "Perhaps something should happen so he can get the therapy he needs".
Speaking of bigger and better than ever, I use Extenze, it keeps me in the game