Retailers Versus Steam?

A story on MCV with a quote in the headline (which isn't in the article itself) stating "Valve monopoly is killing PC market," reports they understand "that at least two big-name digital retailers are facing financial difficulties as they struggle to compete" with Steam. "I've fought hard for my customer, and never before have I had to give my customers away. Steam is killing the PC market and it is no wonder digital retailers are failing," says the director of a Steam rival. "Steam is locking down the market." In a separate report they also discuss retailer dissatisfaction with Steam's dominance of the marketplace, which insiders tell them amounts to 80% of PC downloadable games. Since this competes with online sales initiatives by retailers, they say at least two major U.K. merchants will demand that publishers remove Steam integration from their games or they will refuse to sell them. With PC game sales at retail stores in steady decline, it seems an odd moment for these stores to flex their atrophying muscle, but they quote the head of sales at a big-name digital service provider saying: "At the moment the big digital distributors need to stock games with Steam. But the power resides with bricks and mortar retailers, they can refuse to stock these titles. Publishers are hesitant, but retail must put pressure on them."
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145 Replies. 8 pages. Viewing page 2.
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125.
 
Re: Retailers Versus Steam?
Nov 12, 2010, 07:17
Re: Retailers Versus Steam? Nov 12, 2010, 07:17
Nov 12, 2010, 07:17
 
cliffski wrote on Nov 12, 2010, 04:07:
pihx wrote on Nov 11, 2010, 11:17:
I only use Steam and i am proud of it.

what if steam don't stock a game? you just decide they have final say over what you are 'allowed' to buy?

Not all pc games are on steam. And if you want one group of people to decide what games are financially viable on the PC, then that's a pretty scary slippery slope.

That's the beauty of the PC though. Unlike the Xbox360 or PS3 you can simply release your game without the help of Steam. There is nothing preventing you from releasing a title on the PC platform. You might want the financial considerations that come from having your game on Steam but that's a separate matter.
Avatar 51617
124.
 
Re: Retailers Versus Steam?
Nov 12, 2010, 04:07
Re: Retailers Versus Steam? Nov 12, 2010, 04:07
Nov 12, 2010, 04:07
 
pihx wrote on Nov 11, 2010, 11:17:
I only use Steam and i am proud of it.

what if steam don't stock a game? you just decide they have final say over what you are 'allowed' to buy?

Not all pc games are on steam. And if you want one group of people to decide what games are financially viable on the PC, then that's a pretty scary slippery slope.
123.
 
Re: Retailers Versus Steam?
Nov 12, 2010, 02:10
Re: Retailers Versus Steam? Nov 12, 2010, 02:10
Nov 12, 2010, 02:10
 
Pankin wrote on Nov 12, 2010, 01:48:
I've been gaming for 70 years and back then, we had to use punch cards that were mailed between the pages of Life magazine.

thats just because IBM got their start working for the nazis

ive been gaming since before time began, and if you think earth DRM is bad then you should definitely stay out of limbo because it requires your soul to be tattooed with the EULA just to install the motherfucker

dont get me started on the abyss... always staring back at you and shit - makes big brother look like a fuckin hippie
122.
 
Re: Retailers Versus Steam?
Nov 12, 2010, 01:48
Re: Retailers Versus Steam? Nov 12, 2010, 01:48
Nov 12, 2010, 01:48
 
J wrote on Nov 11, 2010, 19:56:
Nxs wrote on Nov 11, 2010, 19:20:
Verno wrote on Nov 11, 2010, 18:35:
It makes no sense to me why everyone seems to be defending steam/steamworks.

Err, why do we have pick sides? Seems kinda childish. I use Steam but I'm well aware of the potential consequences it poses to the industry. Unfortunately there isn't a lot of alternative for consumer choice right now. The PC platform would be in terrible shape without it and it does implement features that consumers want so in the end you take the good with the bad and hope for better in the future.

Please by all means, feel free to design your own Steam clone with published APIs and open systems. Then somehow manage to convince the industry that your central ownership and management of it is in their best interests while they scream and howl about DRM and whatnot. I'll be your first customer even. Until that time though, we work with what we have.

I am not asking anyone to take sides! If you like steam that is fine. I just happen to think it sucks. Maybe you misread or I did not post as plainly as I should have.

I see no need to design some other version of steam or battlenet. Again, all that needs to happen is that publishers realize that there is no reason for this dumbass DRM. It all boils down to that they are scared shitless about piracy. I know, I have said before, however, it still rings true. Once publishers realize there is not one damn thing they can do to stop it, they will stop making the same shit over and over again and actually make the customers that pay for the game happy.

Until then, steam is going to be a closed off monopoly just like live, PSN, Apple, etc.

You may think this is fine and dandy but, I have been playing games for more than 20 years on everything they have been on. Steam and everything like it sucks! Period!

I've been playing games for almost 30 years now. I remember DRM from when I was a wee kiddy with my Sinclair Spectrum. Little colour-coded sheets and requests for words from my manual. All things considered, I find Steam to not be intrusive or frustrating for me at all. Compared to the various DRM that I have experienced over the years, I find Steam to be a breeze; a breath of fresh air.

Period


Color-coded sheets? You were lucky. What I'd have given to use color-coded sheets!! What a dream that would've been!

I've been gaming for 70 years and back then, we had to use punch cards that were mailed between the pages of Life magazine. Sometimes, the cards fell out during mailing and we'd have to ride into the city to get a replacement. Once we got all the 2,560,000 cards, we'd feed them into the reader during our free-time when we weren't working the mines, harvesting the crops, milking the cows, sorting metal for the war effort, or replacing blown vacuum tubes. And that was just to get the game. The real hassle began with their DRM scheme!!

Once the cards were inserted and the game started up, it would flash a few lights on the console that we'd have to interpret. We'd use the cipher that came in the special issue of Life to send our home address into the computer. The computer sent the address thru the 0.0005 baud modem to the game publisher, and two months later, they sent a courier to your house to perform an audit. Once the courier verified us as the owners of the game, he'd ride away on his penny-farthing all the way back to the publisher.

Several weeks later, we'd receive a special code thru the modem and the game would finally start up.

Then it crashed.

And the computer overheated and burned the barn down and all the cows died.
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121.
 
Re: Retailers Versus Steam?
Nov 12, 2010, 01:40
Re: Retailers Versus Steam? Nov 12, 2010, 01:40
Nov 12, 2010, 01:40
 
Nxs wrote on Nov 12, 2010, 00:05:
I really thought someone on here would break free and think for themselves.

Call me a child, troll, or whatever you want to! In the end, people will eventually wake up and realize that they are being screwed over by steam, battlenet, and alike.
Yes, we are all deluded for choosing to use a game platform that simplifies game management and enhances the game playing experience.

I would love to be there to tell you I told you so but, I have no memory!
Be where? In the future when Valve changes their motto to "Do Evil" and doesn't let anyone install a game on their computer outside of Steam? Then they'll stop having sales and take a bigger cut of the purchase price. Maybe they'll make us start paying $30 a month to access our own games! Oh, wait! they aren't our own games! You'll tell us so when Steam goes out of business and we lose all our games!


120.
 
Re: Retailers Versus Steam?
Nov 12, 2010, 00:35
Re: Retailers Versus Steam? Nov 12, 2010, 00:35
Nov 12, 2010, 00:35
 
Steam domination is also causing other problems, they dont even advance their support and technology solutions available to developers who use steam to release their games. Developers have to make patches for their games specifically designed to update files through steam, steam doesnt support ability to install a patch once downloaded for a game, and because of this many developers have to work overtime just to suit steam.
"On 2646.215 I myself attacked & destroyed TCS Tiger's Claw in my Jalthi heavy fighter"
Bakhtosh Redclaw Nar Kiranka
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119.
 
Re: Retailers Versus Steam?
Nov 12, 2010, 00:24
Re: Retailers Versus Steam? Nov 12, 2010, 00:24
Nov 12, 2010, 00:24
 
Nxs wrote on Nov 12, 2010, 00:05:
lol! Judging by your pic, I am guessing you are no more than 20!

The picture is more than 5 years old but great guess

You don't think making a plea for open discussion and then implying that the other side of the debate is brainless is childish though?

"Hey guys, I just wanted to bring up some discussion points about Steam. The first of which is that you are brainless for using it! Don't know why you're getting all bothered by my arguments."
Avatar 17249
118.
 
Re: Retailers Versus Steam?
Nov 12, 2010, 00:12
Nxs
Re: Retailers Versus Steam? Nov 12, 2010, 00:12
Nov 12, 2010, 00:12
Nxs
 
Dev wrote on Nov 12, 2010, 00:00:
Nxs wrote on Nov 11, 2010, 23:19:
I just thought that I would bring up some things that I do not like and there would be some conversation about how steam or an offspring from it could help the PC gaming community.

It is very apparent that that is not the way it is going to go.

For the fourth time, I am OK with this. I just thought that my views would bring forth some thought on how valve/steam works and how to make people like me want to use it or a derivative of it. I am going to have to say that I was wrong!

People that like and use steam have no reason to want a PC game without the use of a third party, from what I can tell, due to stats.

Did you notice that OTHERS agree with you about things they don't like about steam? Such as not being able to sell games? Some of them it stops them from using, some it doesn't. I wouldn't mind the ability to resell my games, but it doesn't stop me from using steam.

Did you know that impulse has mentioned they want to implement the selling of "used" digital titles? I think the publishers will love it when/if it happens, it lets them get another cut out of the used market, they hate gamestop over that. If it succeeds there will be pressure on steam to do the same thing, and they likely will.

The stats don't mean that "people don't want" other features and alternatives to steam. It just means the alternatives out there haven't beat steam. Going by pure stats you could say that no one likes anything but MS, which isn't true, there's a lot of people that like and use apple/mac stuff, millions in fact.

If you really want alternatives to succeed you should put your money where your mouth is and start buying from places like impulse or D2D, or EA store, or amazon, or gamestop, or whatever. If you don't want to do that or help start a company with an alternative, the next best thing to do to achieve your goal is to make your opinion known (just like in politics). Write to the game publishing companies (physical letters and email) and let them know you want alternatives. Write to steam, let them know you want such and such features. Write to impulse and tell them you want such and such features and would they hurry up with reselling games. Post your opinions on the internet (bluesnews is fine, but you should post on wider read places).

If you really want it, don't give up with a few negative replies in bluesnews.

Note: I love steam, it has its issues, but there's a lot to like about it for me. I'm just giving you some objective advice on how to work towards achieving your goal if you desire it enough to work at it. Plus, competition is good for the marketplace.
Sepharo wrote on Nov 11, 2010, 23:38:
Child, troll, or idiot?


I'm voting child!
No, I don't think he's any of the above. I think he's just a non native english speaker. I've learned to recognize it. He still types it pretty well however. His word/phrasing choices sometimes hamper the points he's trying to make. Sadly, I've seen native english speakers worse, our public schools aren't exactly the best in the world.

That was just awesome! Concerning the child thing!
117.
 
Re: Retailers Versus Steam?
Nov 12, 2010, 00:05
Nxs
Re: Retailers Versus Steam? Nov 12, 2010, 00:05
Nov 12, 2010, 00:05
Nxs
 
lol! Judging by your pic, I am guessing you are no more than 20! Not that it matters.

I really thought someone on here would break free and think for themselves.

Call me a child, troll, or whatever you want to! In the end, people will eventually wake up and realize that they are being screwed over by steam, battlenet, and alike.

I would love to be there to tell you I told you so but, I have no memory!
116.
 
Re: Retailers Versus Steam?
Nov 12, 2010, 00:00
Dev
Re: Retailers Versus Steam? Nov 12, 2010, 00:00
Nov 12, 2010, 00:00
Dev
 
Nxs wrote on Nov 11, 2010, 23:19:
I just thought that I would bring up some things that I do not like and there would be some conversation about how steam or an offspring from it could help the PC gaming community.

It is very apparent that that is not the way it is going to go.

For the fourth time, I am OK with this. I just thought that my views would bring forth some thought on how valve/steam works and how to make people like me want to use it or a derivative of it. I am going to have to say that I was wrong!

People that like and use steam have no reason to want a PC game without the use of a third party, from what I can tell, due to stats.

Did you notice that OTHERS agree with you about things they don't like about steam? Such as not being able to sell games? Some of them it stops them from using, some it doesn't. I wouldn't mind the ability to resell my games, but it doesn't stop me from using steam.

Did you know that impulse has mentioned they want to implement the selling of "used" digital titles? I think the publishers will love it when/if it happens, it lets them get another cut out of the used market, they hate gamestop over that. If it succeeds there will be pressure on steam to do the same thing, and they likely will.

The stats don't mean that "people don't want" other features and alternatives to steam. It just means the alternatives out there haven't beat steam. Going by pure stats you could say that no one likes anything but MS, which isn't true, there's a lot of people that like and use apple/mac stuff, millions in fact.

If you really want alternatives to succeed you should put your money where your mouth is and start buying from places like impulse or D2D, or EA store, or amazon, or gamestop, or whatever. If you don't want to do that or help start a company with an alternative, the next best thing to do to achieve your goal is to make your opinion known (just like in politics). Write to the game publishing companies (physical letters and email) and let them know you want alternatives. Write to steam, let them know you want such and such features. Write to impulse and tell them you want such and such features and would they hurry up with reselling games. Post your opinions on the internet (bluesnews is fine, but you should post on wider read places).

If you really want it, don't give up with a few negative replies in bluesnews.

Note: I love steam, it has its issues, but there's a lot to like about it for me. I'm just giving you some objective advice on how to work towards achieving your goal if you desire it enough to work at it. Plus, competition is good for the marketplace.
Sepharo wrote on Nov 11, 2010, 23:38:
Child, troll, or idiot?


I'm voting child!
No, I don't think he's any of the above. I think he's just a non native english speaker. I've learned to recognize it. He still types it pretty well however. His word/phrasing choices sometimes hamper the points he's trying to make. Sadly, I've seen native english speakers worse, our public schools aren't exactly the best in the world.

This comment was edited on Nov 12, 2010, 00:05.
115.
 
Re: Retailers Versus Steam?
Nov 11, 2010, 23:38
Re: Retailers Versus Steam? Nov 11, 2010, 23:38
Nov 11, 2010, 23:38
 
Nxs wrote on Nov 11, 2010, 23:19:
A lot of you love steam. I don't care! I just thought that I would bring up some things that I do not like and there would be some conversation about how steam or an offspring from it could help the PC gaming community.

It is very apparent that that is not the way it is going to go.

For the fourth time, I am OK with this. I just thought that my views would bring forth some thought on how valve/steam works and how to make people like me want to use it or a derivative of it. I am going to have to say that I was wrong!


However, some of us have a brain and like to think!


Child, troll, or idiot?


I'm voting child!
Avatar 17249
114.
 
Re: Retailers Versus Steam?
Nov 11, 2010, 23:20
Re: Retailers Versus Steam? Nov 11, 2010, 23:20
Nov 11, 2010, 23:20
 
You know another aspect of this that no one is touching on that retail hardly ever bothers with releasing Mac software/games. So you could say that Retail had abandoned Mac gamers far earlier than they did with the PC gamers.Recently Valve has pretty much brought a lot of attention to gaming on a Mac system by simply choosing to support the platform. A lot of developers mostly indie but some AAA titles are porting over to Mac mostly after the Mac client for steam was released.

Going back to what I said early in to this thread, that all the digital distribution rivals have to do is offer a compelling reason to want to use the service. I gave an example for Mac users. These services also need to consider developing Major AAA first party games. I have yet to see any other DD service other than Steam and Impulse doing this.

There is nothing forcing publishers in to including SteamWorks or GameForWindows Live or even Impulse's Reactor middleware. The publishers use it because there is a demand for the features that these services provide. If they didn't provide the developers or the consumers a value they wouldn't use it. Valve or any one for that matter isn't forcing anyone in to making the exclusives either.

If the retail companies want to play hardball then they need to go after all the attached middle-ware services be Steam/Impulse/GfWL/Battle.net instead of just picking the largest target here. If they have a problem then address it.

If You want people to buy games at retail again then how about expanding the shelf space and actually advertise you sell PC/Mac games for one.

This comment was edited on Nov 11, 2010, 23:43.
113.
 
Re: Retailers Versus Steam?
Nov 11, 2010, 23:19
Nxs
Re: Retailers Versus Steam? Nov 11, 2010, 23:19
Nov 11, 2010, 23:19
Nxs
 
You have gotta be kidding me?

Tis not like you have to quote me. I know what I wrote!

I told you before, I will say it again before I eat and go watch cartoons; I knew what was going to happen well before I posted in this thread. I am fine with this. A lot of you love steam. I don't care! I just thought that I would bring up some things that I do not like and there would be some conversation about how steam or an offspring from it could help the PC gaming community.

It is very apparent that that is not the way it is going to go.

For the fourth time, I am OK with this. I just thought that my views would bring forth some thought on how valve/steam works and how to make people like me want to use it or a derivative of it. I am going to have to say that I was wrong!

People that like and use steam have no reason to want a PC game without the use of a third party, from what I can tell, due to stats.

If most of you want to sit there and let steam tell you how a PC game should work, fine by me! However, some of us have a brain and like to think! Steam should be an option not a need. I do not care what most of you say, steam or something like it is needed to play a PC game these days.

Personally, I hope every brick and mortar and other digi download site that sells a game that you have to go home and install steam sues the piss out of them! They should have done it a long time ago!
112.
 
Re: Retailers Versus Steam?
Nov 11, 2010, 22:38
Re: Retailers Versus Steam? Nov 11, 2010, 22:38
Nov 11, 2010, 22:38
 
Nxs: you rant on and on about DRM, then ask how people can like Steam, as if DRM is the only thing Steam offers. Most people don't like DRM, but the advantages of Steam outweigh the disadvantages for most people.

Bad things with Steam: (I have no problem with a couple of these)
Single player may not work if you don't have an internet connection
no resale
DRM
Must be running Steam to play a game bought through Steam

Good things:
Access to all games with a single portable account (not a bunch of CD codes)
All games can be downloaded again at no charge.
Automatic patching.
Steam overlay for all games, even those not installed through Steam.
Social features - achievements, friends, etc...
Devolpers/Publishers keep more money from digital sales than physical sales (I assume)

Also, unlike Apple's iOS app store, xBox Live Arcade, PSN and WiiWare, Steam doesn't (and can never) take away the ability of game makers to sell directly to me.

This comment was edited on Nov 11, 2010, 22:52.
111.
 
Re: Retailers Versus Steam?
Nov 11, 2010, 22:36
Re: Retailers Versus Steam? Nov 11, 2010, 22:36
Nov 11, 2010, 22:36
 
Nxs wrote on Nov 11, 2010, 20:04:
I am willing to change, just not the way steam, Live,PSN, Apple or any other big brother system wants me to.

Oh really? You just said big brother and apparently weren't joking so I think I got all of the info I need here.

Nxs wrote on Nov 11, 2010, 20:04:

I do not want to use steam or anything like it.

But you're willing to change?

It is the consumers that should be in control, not the other way around and as long as you guys sit there and take it, it will never change

But what if you go to the store and they photograph you on their big brother security cameras? What if they send the photos to the government and The Man starts documenting your videogame habits?! The bank has all of your personal information too, oh shit! Are those helicopters outside?
Avatar 51617
110.
 
Re: Retailers Versus Steam?
Nov 11, 2010, 22:08
Re: Retailers Versus Steam? Nov 11, 2010, 22:08
Nov 11, 2010, 22:08
 
Slashman wrote on Nov 11, 2010, 19:49:
The only people that Steam are making unhappy right now as I see it, are people on forums like this who are raging against the fact that they have to deal with DRM

There's really only like three of them in these 100+ comments. It was a lot worse in past years. I think majority sentiments in this thread really show how far Steam has come.

I can look back on my own posting history and see very similar comments of my own back when Steam was a patching service for CS. Now I'm probably one of the biggest Steam fans out there.

As others have already mentioned in this thread, I haven't bought a boxed game in years and the only games I have outside of Steam are a single GoG title and Sins on Impulse. And I interned at Stardock, I told them flat out that Impulse was inferior and I'd much rather use Steam. Maybe that's why I didn't get invited back
Avatar 17249
109.
 
Re: Retailers Versus Steam?
Nov 11, 2010, 20:27
Re: Retailers Versus Steam? Nov 11, 2010, 20:27
Nov 11, 2010, 20:27
 
heroin wrote on Nov 11, 2010, 17:13:
I don't give a shit about retailers. The last several years retailers were shitting all over PC gaming anyway. PC games were treated like adult magazines at a corner store; hidden away and mostly generic shit.

At least with Steam, you see that "indie" category? You think that would ever occur at some corporate retail chain, hell no. Steam is helping PC gaming and gaming in general by supporting the little guys who would have a much more difficult time finding funding, marketing, or distributing; that alone justifies Steam over retailers in my mind. The Braid's, World of Goo's, Amnesia's that are helping to innovate a somewhat stagnant market.

Though, I must say that it pisses me off to have to be connected to the internet to play a single-player game that I paid for.

Anyway, good luck to retailers trying to muscle developers against Steam. I can see it now, walking into the PC section of a Gamestop with one PC game in stock "Muppet Babies: Learn the ABCs".

QFE.

One thing though. Open steam... Click Steam menu... click "Go Offline..." Voila. All single player steam games accessible with no internet.(And in some cases, it even enables default local saving.)
108.
 
Re: Retailers Versus Steam?
Nov 11, 2010, 20:21
Re: Retailers Versus Steam? Nov 11, 2010, 20:21
Nov 11, 2010, 20:21
 
I am telling you though, sooner or later, steam is going to be regarded as a monopoly and something will happen.

That's silly. Steam is only wildly successful because they make both sides happy(Publishers and consumers). There are other platforms that do the same thing, even better(Impulse). Impulse is unwilling to give the same standard of DRM that Steam provides though, so it has less support from the publishers. But in no way will Steam ever be considered a monopoly, unless retail stores stop selling PC games entirely, which will never happen in the US, since about 40% of the country isn't even interested in obtaining broadband, which means no steam generally. Not to mention people like you, which refuse to use it(due to paranoia apparently.)
107.
 
Re: Retailers Versus Steam?
Nov 11, 2010, 20:14
Re: Retailers Versus Steam? Nov 11, 2010, 20:14
Nov 11, 2010, 20:14
 
This is mostly irrelevant, as it doesn't take into account people like me, who do not want physical copies. I would rather have all my games accessible via a platform like Steam. I believe Stardock is doing fine by the way, because it does have exclusives/different demographics.

Will steam kill brick and mortar? No. Will it steal a lot of their sales? Absolutely. The only reason I find to actually purchase a hard copy of a game anymore is if there is some kind of benefit, such as early access, which only applies to MMOs generally. CDs/DVDs/SecuROM/etc are highly annoying.

The biggest thing though? I can reinstall a game 5 years down the line and its already patched and will work? Why would I bother with a hard copy, where all the money is going to the publisher chain and brick and mortar anyways? Support your local indie developer and buy games off Steam(or Impulse), since its the only real platform they have for widespread distribution anyways.
106.
 
Re: Retailers Versus Steam?
Nov 11, 2010, 20:04
Nxs
Re: Retailers Versus Steam? Nov 11, 2010, 20:04
Nov 11, 2010, 20:04
Nxs
 
Verno and Slash,

Amazon and the rest are not an alternative for me either! Mainly because it is the same crap. I buy from a different place and still have to use steam.

I do not want to use steam or anything like it. I thought I made that clear! If you do, fine. I do not and I know there are other people that think the same way I do.

I am not trying to change your mind about steam. I am just stating my opinion on the subject.

I am telling you though, sooner or later, steam is going to be regarded as a monopoly and something will happen.

As much as I want to argue with you, it is very apparent that most people think anyone against steam is just some retard that is not willing to change. I am willing to change, just not the way steam, Live,PSN, Apple or any other big brother system wants me to.

I like having a choice and a say and none of the ones I listed above will ever change as long as they have control. It is the consumers that should be in control, not the other way around and as long as you guys sit there and take it, it will never change
145 Replies. 8 pages. Viewing page 2.
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