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Developers Are Unhappy With Steam Having So Many Titles Released So Quickly
Posted , 28 April 2014 at 1:55 pm UTC / 5785 views
It seems developers aren't happy about how quickly titles are being blasted onto Steam recently. I've seen a quote from the Secrets of Raetikon developer who got pushed off the Steam home-page within minutes.

Being in the newly released section on Steam is absolutely vital to some developers and it seems Valve is utterly failing at allowing so many new releases on the same day.

Valve is well known to wanting to become an open platform without greenlight, but even before that happens there are already problems like this cropping up. Imagine if you release on a day that 18 other games get released, how would you as a developer feel? How many people are likely to scroll through pages of the newly released section on Steam, not many I bet.

This poses a problem for stores that want to be so completely open as to allow developers to release whenever they want, there needs to be some curating on this with some sort of limit per-day. Otherwise Steam will not be as profitable as it has been for indies that don't have masses of websites backing them. Hell even having an Indie section on the home-page would help separate them from games with publishers.

This does open the doors for developers to look elsewhere though, why put all your eggs into Steam? This isn't the first time developers have been unhappy with Steam and its processes, Project Zomboid also fell into a trap with the day they released into Early Access steam stopped showing Early Access titles in the 'New Releases' section.

How should Steam solve issues like these? Steam of course even with indies possibly going elsewhere wouldn't die any time soon. It is still the place where the bigger developers push their games on, so if you want them you still most of the time need to go to Steam anyway.

When Desura finally bring out their updated client for Linux, and actually have a Mac version of it then maybe more developers are likely to look at them again. They are working on it right now, so stay tuned for information on that folks. Desura still have things talked about new design to appear soon, if it isn't turning into a myth that is.

You can see the full article from where I took the info here.

I am the owner of GamingOnLinux. A fan of anything techy, and not just Linux stuff.

You can follow my personal blog here.

migizi commented on 28 April 2014 at 2:14 pm UTC

Discoverability is always going to be a problem. It doesn't matter what platform you use. Steam is so entrenched in the mind of gamers that not releasing on Steam is just bad for business. Unless you use the Steam API heavily, making a game that you can release on multiple channels is your best bet. Desura is good but I don't think it has anything remotely close to the same user base as other channels. To cover all bases you'll want to at least hit GOG.com, humblebundle.com, use the humble widget to sell on your site, and Steam. Secondary concerns should be Desura and Gamers Gate. After that it might not be worth the effort the list on other sites.

The thing to remember is that for every update and release you have, each of the channels you sell on, you have to push it out. There is no do all end all store to sell on.

Personally I feel that the humble widget and store are the best (at least until GOG has Linux support).

Discoverability is always going to be a problem. It doesn't matter what platform you use. Steam is so entrenched in the mind of gamers that not releasing on Steam is just bad for business. Unless you use the Steam API heavily, making a game that you can release on multiple channels is your best bet. Desura is good but I don't think it has anything remotely close to the same user base as other channels. To cover all bases you'll want to at least hit GOG.com, humblebundle.com, use the humble widget to sell on your site, and Steam. Secondary concerns should be Desura and Gamers Gate. After that it might not be worth the effort the list on other sites. The thing to remember is that for every update and release you have, each of the channels you sell on, you have to push it out. There is no do all end all store to sell on. Personally I feel that the humble widget and store are the best (at least until GOG has Linux support).
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edgley commented on 28 April 2014 at 2:25 pm UTC

TotalBiscuit did a rant on this very issue a few weeks ago.

A lot of companies are now pushing their old (mostly crap) back catalogue of games to Steam. Unfortunately, Steam sees the "Release date" as the date it was available on Steam, so a game from 1997 is up there, and interfering, with the actual new games (indie or not).

This is less obvious in the Linux specific page because most of these publishers aren't actually doing any porting (there's a lot of issues with games not even working right in newer releases of Windows).

TotalBiscuit did a rant on this very issue a few weeks ago. A lot of companies are now pushing their old (mostly crap) back catalogue of games to Steam. Unfortunately, Steam sees the "Release date" as the date it was available on Steam, so a game from 1997 is up there, and interfering, with the actual new games (indie or not). This is less obvious in the Linux specific page because most of these publishers aren't actually doing any porting (there's a lot of issues with games not even working right in newer releases of Windows).
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liamdawe commented on 28 April 2014 at 2:26 pm UTC

Yeah that's annoying as hell as well edgley.

Yeah that's annoying as hell as well edgley.
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Anonymous commented on 28 April 2014 at 2:40 pm UTC

edgleyTotalBiscuit did a rant on this very issue a few weeks ago.

A lot of companies are now pushing their old (mostly crap) back catalogue of games to Steam. Unfortunately, Steam sees the "Release date" as the date it was available on Steam, so a game from 1997 is up there, and interfering, with the actual new games (indie or not) <snip>.

Actually that's not how it works, at least i've missed out on several ports that became available because they where not listed as recently released but on the origional release date. (Yes i do browse all them pages, same with the specials tab)

The amount of fast created indie games could as well be a huge part of the problem, its starting to look like the Atari days where companies would release dozens of very bad games just to reel in money. I'm not saying all indie games a bad but if you take a look in 1 week 40 almost identical side scrolling games get released of which 38 are of poor quality in multiple aspects.

[quote=edgley]TotalBiscuit did a rant on this very issue a few weeks ago. A lot of companies are now pushing their old (mostly crap) back catalogue of games to Steam. Unfortunately, Steam sees the "Release date" as the date it was available on Steam, so a game from 1997 is up there, and interfering, with the actual new games (indie or not) <snip>.[/quote] Actually that's not how it works, at least i've missed out on several ports that became available because they where not listed as recently released but on the origional release date. (Yes i do browse all them pages, same with the specials tab) The amount of fast created indie games could as well be a huge part of the problem, its starting to look like the Atari days where companies would release dozens of very bad games just to reel in money. I'm not saying all indie games a bad but if you take a look in 1 week 40 almost identical side scrolling games get released of which 38 are of poor quality in multiple aspects.
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Anonymous commented on 28 April 2014 at 2:55 pm UTC

Yeah, it really sucks to have so many choices of games to play. I could see how a dev wouldn't want another dev to be able to try making money while they make money; it's practically stealing!

Yeah, it really sucks to have so many choices of games to play. I could see how a dev wouldn't want another dev to be able to try making money while they make money; it's practically stealing! :S:
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liamdawe commented on 28 April 2014 at 3:11 pm UTC

AnonymousYeah, it really sucks to have so many choices of games to play. I could see how a dev wouldn't want another dev to be able to try making money while they make money; it's practically stealing! :S

You obviously don't understand the issue with a comment like that. This is nothing to do with greed, but visibility.

[quote=Anonymous]Yeah, it really sucks to have so many choices of games to play. I could see how a dev wouldn't want another dev to be able to try making money while they make money; it's practically stealing! :S[/quote] You obviously don't understand the issue with a comment like that. This is nothing to do with greed, but visibility.
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Elm commented on 28 April 2014 at 3:38 pm UTC

Honestly, if your game is worth it's weight in virtual gold, then word of mouth, recommendations from youtubers (such as TotalBiscuit), and let's plays are going to sell your game.

That said, Steam does have a problem. Trash is being put on the steam store. It's like there is no quality to a vast majority of games added these days. If i see your game on the front page, i will ignore it until i see a review from a youtuber like TB. There is no other way for me to sort the trash from the treasure.

Honestly, if your game is worth it's weight in virtual gold, then word of mouth, recommendations from youtubers (such as TotalBiscuit), and let's plays are going to sell your game. That said, Steam does have a problem. Trash is being put on the steam store. It's like there is no quality to a vast majority of games added these days. If i see your game on the front page, i will ignore it until i see a review from a youtuber like TB. There is no other way for me to sort the trash from the treasure.
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GoCorinthians commented on 28 April 2014 at 3:41 pm UTC

Its not a problem of how much but a new approach could easily fix the matter...

Sony & MS are paying high to hurt PC market...Hey Sony/MS DUCK U!

Its not a problem of how much but a new approach could easily fix the matter... Sony & MS are paying high to hurt PC market...Hey Sony/MS DUCK U!
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Half-Shot commented on 28 April 2014 at 4:22 pm UTC

Hell, this is one of the reasons why I'm not too keen on being an Indie Dev. It never used to be the case, but its now starting to impact sales in a large way. I really really hope Valve do something. Beyond Steam, they are still the elders of the industry and should be trying to find a better approach.

More is not always better after all

Hell, this is one of the reasons why I'm not too keen on being an Indie Dev. It never used to be the case, but its now starting to impact sales in a large way. I really really hope Valve do something. Beyond Steam, they are still the elders of the industry and should be trying to find a better approach. More is not always better after all
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