Valve on Steam Trade-Ins

An interview with Valve's Gabe Newell on Eurogamer talks with the Valve boss about a variety of topics, such as Counter-Strike: Global Offensive and the future of the company. An item of particular interest, as noted by GameSpot, is his answer to whether he foresees ever allowing gamers to trade-in used games on Steam. Here's his response:
We need to hire an economist, because we keep bumping up into these issues. You're starting to look at weird issues like currency and inflation and productivity and asset values and liquidity of asset categories. We just wish we were smarter about this stuff. We're reading frantically. We're brushing up, and all we're doing is convincing ourselves that we're more stupid. Half the time people are saying, oh, well, illiquid assets inherently have a penalty, so this argues for trade-ability, that we're essentially becoming a Russian currency model in the 1970s. Everybody races off to try to read papers on the implications of that.

We think we want to move in the direction where everything is an item of exchange. We just aren't totally sure how to do that right. We're sure there are economists out there who understand this really well. We feel like we're this third-world developing country. We've discovered rocks! And we've discovered sticks! And there's this other thing out there and we should move our economy in that direction. There must be somebody at the World Bank who can tell us what we ought to be doing. We just don't know what that is yet.
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Re: Valve on Steam Trade-Ins
Aug 26, 2011, 21:40
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Re: Valve on Steam Trade-Ins Aug 26, 2011, 21:40
Aug 26, 2011, 21:40
 
Toldja.
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Re: Valve on Steam Trade-Ins
Aug 26, 2011, 21:43
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Re: Valve on Steam Trade-Ins Aug 26, 2011, 21:43
Aug 26, 2011, 21:43
 
Gabe is SWEETASS
DON'T LIKE MY COMMENTS?!? THEN STOP RELEASING GARBAGE.
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Re: Valve on Steam Trade-Ins
Aug 26, 2011, 21:56
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Re: Valve on Steam Trade-Ins Aug 26, 2011, 21:56
Aug 26, 2011, 21:56
 
Rather than do trade-ins, why not let us sell our Steam games and they get a cut?
"The only way anyone can live in peace is if they're prepared to forgive." - The Doctor
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Re: Valve on Steam Trade-Ins
Aug 26, 2011, 21:56
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Re: Valve on Steam Trade-Ins Aug 26, 2011, 21:56
Aug 26, 2011, 21:56
 
The World Bank is the last organization i'd want helping me understand economics, let alone creating a market exchange for digital goods.
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Re: Valve on Steam Trade-Ins
Aug 26, 2011, 22:13
Jivaro
 
5.
Re: Valve on Steam Trade-Ins Aug 26, 2011, 22:13
Aug 26, 2011, 22:13
 Jivaro
 
Somnambulator wrote on Aug 26, 2011, 21:56:
The World Bank is the last organization i'd want helping me understand economics, let alone creating a market exchange for digital goods.

true story.
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Re: Valve on Steam Trade-Ins
Aug 26, 2011, 22:26
nin
 
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Re: Valve on Steam Trade-Ins Aug 26, 2011, 22:26
Aug 26, 2011, 22:26
 nin
 

Props to Gabe for being honest, when he says they'd like to do it, but have no idea how. I'd much rather have that than the standard "no comment".

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Re: Valve on Steam Trade-Ins
Aug 26, 2011, 22:45
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Re: Valve on Steam Trade-Ins Aug 26, 2011, 22:45
Aug 26, 2011, 22:45
 
Mad props to Gabe. He's a master troll. This is what it sounds like when someone exceeeeedingly intelligent plays stupid. He's essentially saying "Yeah, that sounds like a good idea. But gosh darn it, I/we just can't figure out how to do it, what with all the numbers and the money and the buying and the selling of stuff. Math is hard."

So he doesn't have to commit to being on either side of the issue, and people who want to sell their old games can come away feeling like Valve is fervently working on the problem.

Well played Mr. Newell ... well played.
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Re: Valve on Steam Trade-Ins
Aug 26, 2011, 22:50
8.
Re: Valve on Steam Trade-Ins Aug 26, 2011, 22:50
Aug 26, 2011, 22:50
 
Which means he has no answer because lawyers haven't figured out how to totally f-it up yet. So they keep it a secret, then they'll explain why he can't do whatever it is he is trying to do. Then their job is complete. Someday we'll all be looking at each other with eyeballs only, we'll be paralyzed by lawyers as all motions will be considered illegal.
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Re: Valve on Steam Trade-Ins
Aug 26, 2011, 22:50
9.
Re: Valve on Steam Trade-Ins Aug 26, 2011, 22:50
Aug 26, 2011, 22:50
 
Somnambulator wrote on Aug 26, 2011, 21:56:
The World Bank is the last organization i'd want helping me understand economics, let alone creating a market exchange for digital goods.

Then who, pray tell, would you want helping you construct a theoretical economic framework?

(Personally, I'd cast my lot with the Behavioral Economics people at Princeton or University of Chicago, but the World Bank people are no slouches in terms of economic modeling.)
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Aug 26, 2011, 23:09
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removed Aug 26, 2011, 23:09
Aug 26, 2011, 23:09
 
* REMOVED *
This comment was deleted on Aug 26, 2011, 23:28.
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Re: Valve on Steam Trade-Ins
Aug 26, 2011, 23:46
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Re: Valve on Steam Trade-Ins Aug 26, 2011, 23:46
Aug 26, 2011, 23:46
 
Trade ins?

When they're still trying to figure out that I want to be able to gift all extra copies of a game I own, not just selective extra copies?

Or that it makes no sense that I have to re-confirm my age to view a screenshot of a game I already own, but the program has no problem giving automatic access to my credit cards for any purchases with two clicks?
A stranger can purchase thousands of games, but I can't view a screenshot?
Wishing Gabe wasn't playing stupid with the question,
Ray
Everything is awesome!!!
http://www.kindafunny.com/
I love you, mom.
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Re: Valve on Steam Trade-Ins
Aug 27, 2011, 00:39
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Re: Valve on Steam Trade-Ins Aug 27, 2011, 00:39
Aug 27, 2011, 00:39
 
Nothing wrong with admitting you don't know anything.

Creston
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Re: Valve on Steam Trade-Ins
Aug 27, 2011, 02:07
13.
Re: Valve on Steam Trade-Ins Aug 27, 2011, 02:07
Aug 27, 2011, 02:07
 
Ray Marden wrote on Aug 26, 2011, 23:46:
Trade ins?

When they're still trying to figure out that I want to be able to gift all extra copies of a game I own, not just selective extra copies?

Or that it makes no sense that I have to re-confirm my age to view a screenshot of a game I already own, but the program has no problem giving automatic access to my credit cards for any purchases with two clicks?
A stranger can purchase thousands of games, but I can't view a screenshot?
Wishing Gabe wasn't playing stupid with the question,
Ray

Your hardships frustrate me.
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Re: Valve on Steam Trade-Ins
Aug 27, 2011, 03:04
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Re: Valve on Steam Trade-Ins Aug 27, 2011, 03:04
Aug 27, 2011, 03:04
 
If you can re-sell your downloaded games then the developers and publishers will start charging more up front. They will also start doing other things to make you want to purchase new rather than purchase used.

Gabe must know this. Its not complicated. I expect never to be able to re-sell a downloaded game. Doesn't bother me.
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Re: Valve on Steam Trade-Ins
Aug 27, 2011, 03:09
15.
Re: Valve on Steam Trade-Ins Aug 27, 2011, 03:09
Aug 27, 2011, 03:09
 
killer_roach wrote on Aug 26, 2011, 22:50:
Somnambulator wrote on Aug 26, 2011, 21:56:
The World Bank is the last organization i'd want helping me understand economics, let alone creating a market exchange for digital goods.

Then who, pray tell, would you want helping you construct a theoretical economic framework?

(Personally, I'd cast my lot with the Behavioral Economics people at Princeton or University of Chicago, but the World Bank people are no slouches in terms of economic modeling.)

Well they're certainly good at leading nations into indentured servitude if not virtual slavery. That being the case, yes, I'd rather borrow my money from Vinny the loanshark down the street than those pricks.

And yes, yes, yes, we all know you can't borrow forever...unless you're the U.S. - seemingly at any rate. However, the vast majority of us must go into debt from time to time. If we didn't our entire system of conspicupus consumption would collapse otherwise. heaven forbid we actully spend money on what we need versus what we want. Or, as that douche said in Boiler Room, "Everyone's got a Porsche, but no one has five dollars gas money."

I feel sorry for anyone who has kids right now because the next 25 years i going to see a fundamental shift in quality of life, and for most of us, it ain't for the better unless they start coming with some futuristic Star Trek shit.
"You have enemies? Good. That means you’ve stood up for something, sometime in your life."
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Re: Valve on Steam Trade-Ins
Aug 27, 2011, 04:37
16.
Re: Valve on Steam Trade-Ins Aug 27, 2011, 04:37
Aug 27, 2011, 04:37
 
Cutter wrote on Aug 27, 2011, 03:09:
killer_roach wrote on Aug 26, 2011, 22:50:
Somnambulator wrote on Aug 26, 2011, 21:56:
The World Bank is the last organization i'd want helping me understand economics, let alone creating a market exchange for digital goods.

Then who, pray tell, would you want helping you construct a theoretical economic framework?

(Personally, I'd cast my lot with the Behavioral Economics people at Princeton or University of Chicago, but the World Bank people are no slouches in terms of economic modeling.)

Well they're certainly good at leading nations into indentured servitude if not virtual slavery. That being the case, yes, I'd rather borrow my money from Vinny the loanshark down the street than those pricks.

And yes, yes, yes, we all know you can't borrow forever...unless you're the U.S. - seemingly at any rate. However, the vast majority of us must go into debt from time to time. If we didn't our entire system of conspicupus consumption would collapse otherwise. heaven forbid we actully spend money on what we need versus what we want. Or, as that douche said in Boiler Room, "Everyone's got a Porsche, but no one has five dollars gas money."

I feel sorry for anyone who has kids right now because the next 25 years i going to see a fundamental shift in quality of life, and for most of us, it ain't for the better unless they start coming with some futuristic Star Trek shit.

Keep your dumb ass political posts off gaming sites

I have not posted here since 2007. Lost my old account. But felt I needed to swat shitbags such as yourself off of blues.
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Re: Valve on Steam Trade-Ins
Aug 27, 2011, 05:42
17.
Re: Valve on Steam Trade-Ins Aug 27, 2011, 05:42
Aug 27, 2011, 05:42
 
Couple things I would like to see:

Talk to the guys at Green Man Gaming, they offer trade ins.

Allow me to gift anything I buy that I have a dupe of, not just CERTAIN games. That sucks.
18.
 
Re: Valve on Steam Trade-Ins
Aug 27, 2011, 06:11
Dev
18.
Re: Valve on Steam Trade-Ins Aug 27, 2011, 06:11
Aug 27, 2011, 06:11
Dev
 
Nate wrote on Aug 27, 2011, 03:04:
If you can re-sell your downloaded games then the developers and publishers will start charging more up front. They will also start doing other things to make you want to purchase new rather than purchase used.

Gabe must know this. Its not complicated. I expect never to be able to re-sell a downloaded game. Doesn't bother me.
a) Depends on how it works. If gabe gives a cut of each trade in to the publisher they will jump up and down for joy that they'd get a cut. And if valve doesn't sell "used" copies as well, just offers steam wallet trade in credit, that solves the selling used copy thing that gamestop likes to do and the pubs and devs all get upset about.
Valve would have to work out the logistics of the CD key thing, games with layered copy protection and limited activations would have a problem getting tied to another account, whereas ones with just steam protection probably wouldn't. Plus there's games where you use that serial to register a special forum account (egosoft did/does that for instance) that would have to be looked at.

b) gamestop with its used game sales has already driven publishers to do things like that. Its called DLC.

c) Yes, it IS complicated. In addition to the few issues I mentioned that I can think of off the top of my head, there's problems with trying to make sure they don't cannibalize other sales. It would be partly fixed with only offering credit and no "used " game sales, but they'd still possibly have less "new" money coming into the system. It wouldnt' be worth it if doing this decreases the "new" money coming in. Gamestop addresses this by charging near retail prices for used copies and giving crap credit for trad-ins, so they screw people coming and going on used game sales and constantly have a large influx of "new" money. Incidentally this cannibalization is the reason why companies tend to sell digital copies for almost the same price as retail copies when they are released. They don't want to cannibalize retail sales. Regardless of what Gabe knows or doesn't know, or if he's playing dumb, this IS a complicated issue. Doing it wrong could be a huge logistical nightmare and kill valve as a company.

Stolk wrote on Aug 27, 2011, 02:07:
Or that it makes no sense that I have to re-confirm my age to view a screenshot of a game I already own, but the program has no problem giving automatic access to my credit cards for any purchases with two clicks?
One of the MANY things that irks me about steam. WTF do I have to enter that continually? Let me put in a birthday into my account and remember it from them on, OMG.

Oh and how about letting me do a search in my user list, port that game library list search function over, probably take like 15 mins.

Valve needs to hire some dedicated UI guys instead of just letting everyone work on stuff thats interesting to them.

This comment was edited on Aug 27, 2011, 07:06.
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Re: Valve on Steam Trade-Ins
Aug 27, 2011, 06:16
19.
Re: Valve on Steam Trade-Ins Aug 27, 2011, 06:16
Aug 27, 2011, 06:16
 
Creston wrote on Aug 27, 2011, 00:39:
Nothing wrong with admitting you don't know anything.

Creston

First of all, they are pumping out the shit so fast even waste-recyling plants are wondering what the fuck. Valve doesn't know anything about economics???? Just think about how powerful steam is to pretty much all game distributers. They are playing dumb. If you don't get that, then you're dumber than I thought (and I already had you rated at far below 100 IQ as it was).

Secondly, you signed your name again. You do it every fucking time. How about you just move your eyes slightly to the right and realize that it ALREADY SAYS CRESTON!!! It's like you're writing us a love letter or something... "love Creston".... it's pathetic.

Finally, what the hell is that butt ugly avatar and why did you choose it?
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Re: Valve on Steam Trade-Ins
Aug 27, 2011, 06:56
20.
Re: Valve on Steam Trade-Ins Aug 27, 2011, 06:56
Aug 27, 2011, 06:56
 
Nate wrote on Aug 27, 2011, 03:04:
If you can re-sell your downloaded games then the developers and publishers will start charging more up front. They will also start doing other things to make you want to purchase new rather than purchase used.

Gabe must know this. Its not complicated. I expect never to be able to re-sell a downloaded game. Doesn't bother me.

^

This ended the discussion. Period.
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