Steam Greenlight Giving Way to Steam Direct

Steam News announces the end of the Steam Greenlight program, saying it will give way to a new system called Steam Direct that will launch in the spring. Valve talks about how this evolution will address a couple of the shortcomings of Greenlight as it will improve the pipeline for bringing new content to Steam and provide more ways to connect customers with the content they want. Here's more on Steam Direct and the future of the service:
A better path for digital distribution
The next step in these improvements is to establish a new direct sign-up system for developers to put their games on Steam. This new path, which we’re calling “Steam Direct,” is targeted for Spring 2017 and will replace Steam Greenlight. We will ask new developers to complete a set of digital paperwork, personal or company verification, and tax documents similar to the process of applying for a bank account. Once set up, developers will pay a recoupable application fee for each new title they wish to distribute, which is intended to decrease the noise in the submission pipeline.

While we have invested heavily in our content pipeline and personalized store, we’re still debating the publishing fee for Steam Direct. We talked to several developers and studios about an appropriate fee, and they gave us a range of responses from as low as $100 to as high as $5,000. There are pros and cons at either end of the spectrum, so we’d like to gather more feedback before settling on a number.

Just the beginning
We want to make sure Steam is a welcoming environment for all developers who are serious about treating customers fairly and making quality gaming experiences. The updates we’ve made over the past few years have been paving the way for improvements to how new titles get on to Steam, and Steam Direct represents just one more step in our ongoing process of making Steam better.

We intend to keep iterating on Steam’s shopping experience, the content pipeline and everything in between.

As we prepare to make these changes, we welcome your feedback and input on this and any other Steam issues. As always, we'll continue to read the community's discussions throughout the Steam forums and the web at large, and we look forward to hearing your thoughts.
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48 Replies. 3 pages. Viewing page 2.
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28.
 
Re: Steam Greenlight Giving Way to Steam Direct
Feb 10, 2017, 17:21
28.
Re: Steam Greenlight Giving Way to Steam Direct Feb 10, 2017, 17:21
Feb 10, 2017, 17:21
 
jacobvandy wrote on Feb 10, 2017, 16:31:
If a game you bought doesn't pass a "basic quality test," then you can refund it immediately. That's what it's for.

I would much prefer the game to never be on Steam in the first place than using customers as guinea pigs.
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27.
 
Re: Steam Greenlight Giving Way to Steam Direct
Feb 10, 2017, 17:19
27.
Re: Steam Greenlight Giving Way to Steam Direct Feb 10, 2017, 17:19
Feb 10, 2017, 17:19
 
Creston wrote on Feb 10, 2017, 15:52:
So I'd suggest they make a system where the cost of putting up a game is $5K, and then on your first $15K of sales, you earn back $4500 from the cut that Valve normally takes.

That should hopefully stop the absolute avalanche of garbage that's been infesting Steam.

I really like this idea. I think 5K is a lot to ask for small developers.
26.
 
Re: Steam Greenlight Giving Way to Steam Direct
Feb 10, 2017, 17:18
26.
Re: Steam Greenlight Giving Way to Steam Direct Feb 10, 2017, 17:18
Feb 10, 2017, 17:18
 
Squirmer wrote on Feb 10, 2017, 16:16:
With the money Steam is making, Valve could hire a small team to run basic quality tests on the products they sell.

CJ_Parker wrote on Feb 10, 2017, 15:07:
Well, the fee is recoupable. It's not gone. I don't see a reason why anyone who is really serious about game development shouldn't be able to afford a $5K admission fee. I'd consider that pretty low actually. If you want to found a business then you need to show up with some capital in most countries and it's usually WAY more than a measly $5K.
It's low for business costs, but many indie devs are more like struggling artists, not businesses.

But I guess if they set the price too high, there'll just be a flood of Kickstarters to fund the publishing fee.

And I'd be fine with that. A lot of crap games will fail that $5K KS funding test unless the developer has either a kick-ass concept, or a good track record. No more shovelware/stealware for $100 a pop.
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25.
 
Re: Steam Greenlight Giving Way to Steam Direct
Feb 10, 2017, 17:09
25.
Re: Steam Greenlight Giving Way to Steam Direct Feb 10, 2017, 17:09
Feb 10, 2017, 17:09
 
Kxmode wrote on Feb 10, 2017, 15:58:
Bundy wrote on Feb 10, 2017, 14:03:
$100 hasn't reduced the amount of trash you see in the iOS app store. But I imagine $5,000 will almost entirely eliminate the one-man-part-time indie dev from publishing anything.

There must be a middle ground that'll work for devs and gamers alike.

The downside is that might eliminate the Eric Barones and Stardew Valleys indie projects.

So, Stardew Valley has an estimated revenue of $25M. He would have made back his $5K easily, like within the first 10 minutes his game was on sale.
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24.
 
Re: Steam Greenlight Giving Way to Steam Direct
Feb 10, 2017, 17:03
24.
Re: Steam Greenlight Giving Way to Steam Direct Feb 10, 2017, 17:03
Feb 10, 2017, 17:03
 
The Half Elf wrote on Feb 10, 2017, 15:00:
How about they get RID of all the trash on Steam first.

Or at least implement some better filtering.
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23.
 
Re: Steam Greenlight Giving Way to Steam Direct
Feb 10, 2017, 16:59
23.
Re: Steam Greenlight Giving Way to Steam Direct Feb 10, 2017, 16:59
Feb 10, 2017, 16:59
 
eRe4s3r wrote on Feb 10, 2017, 14:20:
Bundy wrote on Feb 10, 2017, 14:03:
$100 hasn't reduced the amount of trash you see in the iOS app store. But I imagine $5,000 will almost entirely eliminate the one-man-part-time indie dev from publishing anything.

There must be a middle ground that'll work for devs and gamers alike.

With 5000$, games like Star Ruler or indeed any Indy game (including the ones from Japan) would not be on Steam whatsoever. That'd be like 20% of the budget...

So those games did less than $5000 in sales thus not recouping the money? I'd argue such niche games need not be on Steam in that case.
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22.
 
Re: Steam Greenlight Giving Way to Steam Direct
Feb 10, 2017, 16:58
22.
Re: Steam Greenlight Giving Way to Steam Direct Feb 10, 2017, 16:58
Feb 10, 2017, 16:58
 
CJ_Parker wrote on Feb 10, 2017, 14:08:
Any move to weed out the abysmal shovelware garbage is welcomed. I'd say make the fee *at least* $5,000. It's recoupable so what. If some basement dwelling kiddo can't afford it, it's not a big loss. Kiddo can always self-publish first via their own website (or a network site of fledgling game devs) and if the game really is somewhat decent then kiddo should be able to cough up the $5K in no time.

Or kiddo can publish on itch.io, where a whole crap of indie games now reside. Once they get popular, then they're moving to Steam. This has become my son's go-to place to find interesting new stuff. He's been messing around with Clone Drone in the Danger Zone for months, even though it was just put up on Steam last week. Ditto for Ravenfield and Ancient Warfare 2.
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Your choice is clear.
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21.
 
Re: Steam Greenlight Giving Way to Steam Direct
Feb 10, 2017, 16:31
21.
Re: Steam Greenlight Giving Way to Steam Direct Feb 10, 2017, 16:31
Feb 10, 2017, 16:31
 
If a game you bought doesn't pass a "basic quality test," then you can refund it immediately. That's what it's for.
20.
 
Re: Steam Greenlight Giving Way to Steam Direct
Feb 10, 2017, 16:16
20.
Re: Steam Greenlight Giving Way to Steam Direct Feb 10, 2017, 16:16
Feb 10, 2017, 16:16
 
With the money Steam is making, Valve could hire a small team to run basic quality tests on the products they sell.

CJ_Parker wrote on Feb 10, 2017, 15:07:
Well, the fee is recoupable. It's not gone. I don't see a reason why anyone who is really serious about game development shouldn't be able to afford a $5K admission fee. I'd consider that pretty low actually. If you want to found a business then you need to show up with some capital in most countries and it's usually WAY more than a measly $5K.
It's low for business costs, but many indie devs are more like struggling artists, not businesses.

But I guess if they set the price too high, there'll just be a flood of Kickstarters to fund the publishing fee.
19.
 
Re: Steam Greenlight Giving Way to Steam Direct
Feb 10, 2017, 16:11
19.
Re: Steam Greenlight Giving Way to Steam Direct Feb 10, 2017, 16:11
Feb 10, 2017, 16:11
 
Slick wrote on Feb 10, 2017, 16:02:
Wesp5 wrote on Feb 10, 2017, 15:57:
How would it be that instead of just getting more money from their monopoly while doing nothing, which is how Steam Direct translates to me, if Valve would actually check whatever they sell on Steam for quality or at least make sure it runs how intended to weed out the trash?

Let's start with basic chat support for the products that they sell, then phone support, then maybe they'll have enough money to get some eyeballs on the exact quality of all the shovelware. Steam might be a multi-billion dollar monopolistic business, but they still operate like they're a startup "greenlight" project.

And I fully understand why they don't do this, because any issue with any game they sell they'd have to field those questions, the system would be swamped by a billion "this random game doesn't work" things. Which as a retailer, they SHOULD have to deal with, but they've found this ingenious way to avoid this fundamental retailer responsibility altogether, and force their customers to deal directly with the "manufacturer".
Neither newegg, amazon, dell, walmart, target etc helps customers who have problems with computers, software, hardware or other items purchased from them.

Why should Steam be any different?
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18.
 
Re: Steam Greenlight Giving Way to Steam Direct
Feb 10, 2017, 16:02
Slick
 
18.
Re: Steam Greenlight Giving Way to Steam Direct Feb 10, 2017, 16:02
Feb 10, 2017, 16:02
 Slick
 
Wesp5 wrote on Feb 10, 2017, 15:57:
How would it be that instead of just getting more money from their monopoly while doing nothing, which is how Steam Direct translates to me, if Valve would actually check whatever they sell on Steam for quality or at least make sure it runs how intended to weed out the trash?

Let's start with basic chat support for the products that they sell, then phone support, then maybe they'll have enough money to get some eyeballs on the exact quality of all the shovelware. Steam might be a multi-billion dollar monopolistic business, but they still operate like they're a startup "greenlight" project.

And I fully understand why they don't do this, because any issue with any game they sell they'd have to field those questions, the system would be swamped by a billion "this random game doesn't work" things. Which as a retailer, they SHOULD have to deal with, but they've found this ingenious way to avoid this fundamental retailer responsibility altogether, and force their customers to deal directly with the "manufacturer".
For your transgressions you shall be labeled a shill, called an idiot and anytime you mention facts or disagree with a tribe member you will henceforth be known as a troll. The best you can hope for is that the labels won't haunt your offspring. -RedEye9
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17.
 
Re: Steam Greenlight Giving Way to Steam Direct
Feb 10, 2017, 16:00
Slick
 
17.
Re: Steam Greenlight Giving Way to Steam Direct Feb 10, 2017, 16:00
Feb 10, 2017, 16:00
 Slick
 
So who here is a certified accountant?

What does "recuperable" mean in this context exactly?

If it means that this amount is deducted from steam fees once the money is coming in, then fuckit, make it $10,000.
For your transgressions you shall be labeled a shill, called an idiot and anytime you mention facts or disagree with a tribe member you will henceforth be known as a troll. The best you can hope for is that the labels won't haunt your offspring. -RedEye9
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16.
 
Re: Steam Greenlight Giving Way to Steam Direct
Feb 10, 2017, 15:58
Kxmode
 
16.
Re: Steam Greenlight Giving Way to Steam Direct Feb 10, 2017, 15:58
Feb 10, 2017, 15:58
 Kxmode
 
Bundy wrote on Feb 10, 2017, 14:03:
$100 hasn't reduced the amount of trash you see in the iOS app store. But I imagine $5,000 will almost entirely eliminate the one-man-part-time indie dev from publishing anything.

There must be a middle ground that'll work for devs and gamers alike.

The downside is that might eliminate the Eric Barones and Stardew Valleys indie projects.
"Hard times create strong men. Strong men create good times. Good times create weak men. And, weak men create hard times." - Those Who Remain by G. Michael Hopf
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15.
 
Re: Steam Greenlight Giving Way to Steam Direct
Feb 10, 2017, 15:57
15.
Re: Steam Greenlight Giving Way to Steam Direct Feb 10, 2017, 15:57
Feb 10, 2017, 15:57
 
How would it be that instead of just getting more money from their monopoly while doing nothing, which is how Steam Direct translates to me, if Valve would actually check whatever they sell on Steam for quality or at least make sure it runs how intended to weed out the trash?
14.
 
Re: Steam Greenlight Giving Way to Steam Direct
Feb 10, 2017, 15:52
14.
Re: Steam Greenlight Giving Way to Steam Direct Feb 10, 2017, 15:52
Feb 10, 2017, 15:52
 
I think the fee should be low. I mean, Steam is still getting its 30% cut, so there's no need for them to make money off the submission fee. However, the barrier to entry needs to be high so that we can get rid of all these blatant "stealware" games, where they put 2 hours of code together and are just trying to get a few hundred people to put money into it.

So I'd suggest they make a system where the cost of putting up a game is $5K, and then on your first $15K of sales, you earn back $4500 from the cut that Valve normally takes.

That should hopefully stop the absolute avalanche of garbage that's been infesting Steam.
Avatar 15604
13.
 
Re: Steam Greenlight Giving Way to Steam Direct
Feb 10, 2017, 15:48
13.
Re: Steam Greenlight Giving Way to Steam Direct Feb 10, 2017, 15:48
Feb 10, 2017, 15:48
 
The small one or two man teams aren't making AAA. Most indie developers don't do this as their full time jobs, or try to get bank loans to fund themselves. They work on their projects during evenings and weekends. $5000 is a bit steep to ask of someone who is supporting a family, has a mortgage and 2 kids that need braces. $500 to $1000 sounds fair to me.
12.
 
Re: Steam Greenlight Giving Way to Steam Direct
Feb 10, 2017, 15:32
12.
Re: Steam Greenlight Giving Way to Steam Direct Feb 10, 2017, 15:32
Feb 10, 2017, 15:32
 
Bundy wrote on Feb 10, 2017, 14:50:
[

I'm just saying $100 is probably too low, everyone can scrounge up $100. But $5000 is probably too much. Steam will just become a store of AAA games. If that's all you want, then that's fair. I'd just like some wiggle room for indie devs to operate in there somewhere. 5K will push them right out.

Heh...;) $5k isn't enough to even start developing a AAA game. I mean, pick a business--any business--and $5k won't be enough get started. If you can't afford $5k to get international promotion for your software you can't afford to develop, and you need to get yourself a job so that you can eat...;)
It is well known that I don't make mistakes--so, if you should happen across an error in something I have written, you can be confident in the fact that *I* did not write it.
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11.
 
Re: Steam Greenlight Giving Way to Steam Direct
Feb 10, 2017, 15:07
11.
Re: Steam Greenlight Giving Way to Steam Direct Feb 10, 2017, 15:07
Feb 10, 2017, 15:07
 
Bundy wrote on Feb 10, 2017, 14:37:
CJ_Parker wrote on Feb 10, 2017, 14:08:
Any move to weed out the abysmal shovelware garbage is welcomed. I'd say make the fee *at least* $5,000. It's recoupable so what. If some basement dwelling kiddo can't afford it, it's not a big loss. Kiddo can always self-publish first via their own website (or a network site of fledgling game devs) and if the game really is somewhat decent then kiddo should be able to cough up the $5K in no time.

Without the exposure of Steam or a hefty advertising budget, self publishing on your own website is almost a guaranteed failure. I know you don't care being a customer and gamer. But the indie developer does need at least a small chance to succeed and get their work noticed.

Well, the fee is recoupable. It's not gone. I don't see a reason why anyone who is really serious about game development shouldn't be able to afford a $5K admission fee. I'd consider that pretty low actually. If you want to found a business then you need to show up with some capital in most countries and it's usually WAY more than a measly $5K.

But, whatever, Steam is cute in pretending to ask for feedback. We all know that Gabe's greed is infinite.
They will set the fee very low because all Valve really cares about is their 30% cut of every purchase.
This whole thing is a pretend-change, an alibi stage performance in order to demonstrate "we care" when in reality they don't give a shit except for their cut.
10.
 
Re: Steam Greenlight Giving Way to Steam Direct
Feb 10, 2017, 15:00
10.
Re: Steam Greenlight Giving Way to Steam Direct Feb 10, 2017, 15:00
Feb 10, 2017, 15:00
 
How about they get RID of all the trash on Steam first.
Avatar 12670
9.
 
Re: Steam Greenlight Giving Way to Steam Direct
Feb 10, 2017, 14:50
9.
Re: Steam Greenlight Giving Way to Steam Direct Feb 10, 2017, 14:50
Feb 10, 2017, 14:50
 
1500-2500 seems like the reasonable range for this, IMO.
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