Steam Greenlight

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FenixStryk Apr 18, 2013 @ 6:06am
If a game is done and not broken, why /shouldn't/ it be on Steam?
I've been following and supporting games on Greenlight for a while now. I know how long it can take for overwhelmingly popular, well-known games to get through the system, let alone how much of a death sentence it is for... "legitimate"* indie games.

This week Giant Bomb touched on Greenlight @0:11:22, here: http://www.giantbomb.com/podcasts/giant-bombcast-04-16-2013/1600-465/

I know not everyone has the time to find and listen to two minutes of conversation, so let me transcribe the main** points** they made:

---
Jeff: "Papers, Please!" is on Greenlight!
Patrick: Yeah!... those games don't do very well on there, though. People are pretty hostile about them.
**Jeff: Yeah, like, what the f### does it matter to them? Like-- I... I feel like as a service, me, you guys, the listeners of this podcast, we should all just go to Greenlight and just start clicking Yes on /everything/. Because, who the f### does it hurt if they're selling stuff? That's the part about Greenlight that makes me crazy!

Brad: Well, if you start flooding Steam with broken s###, then...
Jeff: Okay, sure, yeah--
Brad: Just makes sure it works first, and then yeah.

**Jeff: I feel like anything that resembles a /functional thing/, right, that should just be /there/, and then at that point turn Greenlight into like what gets /promoted/ on the Steam homepage, you know?
---

With the above in your mind, I'd like to ask you the following:
If a game is done, is not broken, is a "functional thing", and someone wants to buy it, what reason is there for it to /not/ be on Steam?


I feel as though Valve is being excessively restrictive in their selection process. What is the benefit of excluding games that are /done/, that people /want/, that already exist on other platforms such as Desura, GOG, GamersGate, Direct2Drive and more?; Games made by companies that already have other games on Steam?; Games that would benefit immensely from Steam integration?

I would really like to hear the logic behind pitting indie games against each other. In my eyes, this process is madness.
Last edited by FenixStryk; Apr 18, 2013 @ 6:13am
Showing 1-15 of 20 comments
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jeslyck Apr 18, 2013 @ 6:46am 
you could but not on the front page where 80-90% of all sales take place
C0untzer0 Apr 18, 2013 @ 7:38am 
Essentially that would be a release on Steam which pretty much guarantees that nobody will care, or at least nobody new.
Skoardy Apr 18, 2013 @ 7:58am 
Hate to imagine the sea of dross Steam would become if the only criteria was 'it works'.

Had to laugh at the guy who can't see the pointlessness in *everything* being voted up. He's not exactly a bright lad, eh?
AIMonster Apr 18, 2013 @ 9:42am 
Well, the way Steam currently works is that they tend to give small indie games just as much ad space and presence on Steam as AAA titles. I like that about Steam, but if you start lowering the bar so to speak you'll find that the system can't continue as it is now.

Now, with that in mind I do think they should rethink how the system works. I'd love it if there was a section of less popular games on Steam that don't get the advertisement space, but can be searched for if a consumer wants to try those types of games and any company can still put a working game on Steam. I agree there is no reason a company with a working game that meets a standard set of requirements should be limited by not getting on Steam, even if the game is extremely simple and unpopular; however I don't think the game should get the same treatment as other titles in terms of presence on Steam, because it would start getting a bit ridiculous if whenever I go to the front page I see a "Featured" list of games that are super niche, casual mobile ports, that I can likely find a better version of elsewhere. When I look at the "New Releases" section, or "Coming Soon" I want to be assured that these are probably very high quality games I'm seeing, and don't want to waste my time sorting through a bunch of lower quality games before making up my mind on a new purchase.

Of course there is also the issue of games taking up space that may see no or little sales actually costing Valve money (bandwidth issue mentioned above).
Gorlom[Swe] Apr 18, 2013 @ 11:28am 
Originally posted by Skoardy:
Had to laugh at the guy who can't see the pointlessness in *everything* being voted up. He's not exactly a bright lad, eh?
I thought it was kinda funny too but I imagine he is just frustrated and want to picket or raise his voice against greenlight rather than think it's a valid thing to do?


I am curious why Valve doesn't split the greenlight titles between "done games" and "in development" when they greenlight titles (maybe they do, but I think they should put them in 2 categories under "greenlit" to make it more obvious to users)
jeslyck Apr 18, 2013 @ 11:50am 
Originally posted by GorlomSwe:
Originally posted by Skoardy:
Had to laugh at the guy who can't see the pointlessness in *everything* being voted up. He's not exactly a bright lad, eh?
I thought it was kinda funny too but I imagine he is just frustrated and want to picket or raise his voice against greenlight rather than think it's a valid thing to do?


I am curious why Valve doesn't split the greenlight titles between "done games" and "in development" when they greenlight titles (maybe they do, but I think they should put them in 2 categories under "greenlit" to make it more obvious to users)


Valv should be smart enough to choose a mix between done games and in development games themselves.
Resolute Apr 18, 2013 @ 3:56pm 
Steam is only useful if it maintains some quality standards. As somebody with almost 900 games in their steam collection I wouldn't want everything that is on greenlight available on steam.

If it was then Steam would become about as useful as the concepts section.

Now I've upvoted around 255 games of which around 58 (give or take a couple) have been Greenlit.

For me I see Greenlight has been working. Not every game can get through and not every game appeals to the market that is steam.

If you want to see what games I've voted for feel free to check my collection.

http://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=111057382
Last edited by Resolute; Apr 18, 2013 @ 3:58pm
Sgt.Psycho Apr 18, 2013 @ 4:17pm 
Because Steam would then become a festering mess of mediocrity, half-baked ideas and insipid, uninspired rehashes of older, better games, with isolated examples of greatness shining lonely in the greater darkness - just like Greenlight.

One of the things that makes Steam as good as it is, is that generally speaking, the quality of games it offers is quite high. No, I don't have every game on Steam, nor do I play every genre, but most of the games offered are of a quite reasonable standard.

It's already hard enough to sort through the Steam Store categories when looking for a new game, I'd hate to have to wallow through thousands of pieces of rubbish instead.
Last edited by Sgt.Psycho; Apr 25, 2013 @ 1:43pm
Snaeng Apr 22, 2013 @ 12:01am 
First of all: All new games get a spot in the "new games" section on the page. This is a HUGE advertising bonus. The more games appear in this list, the less attention those games get. So it's better to just release a few games than ton of games, resulting in more popular games being released first.

Secondly: Valve has to provide the infrastructure for these games in long terms. In order to be able to do this, they need to earn enough money with the games. So just a few people buying the game would not be enough, you need a lot of people to buy it.


Valve is a business. What's in for them to costly release games on their platform when there are not enough people to actually buy it?
Malagen Apr 25, 2013 @ 1:38pm 
I completely agree with you OP. The way Valve allows some games and disallows others simply does not make sense. Take Mortal Online and Darkfall Unholy Wars for instance. MO has been released for several years and is a working game played by many people. It has applied for Greenlight numerous times and has not been accepted. Yes, it is rough around the edges and has a lot of bugs, but it is totally playable. On the other hand you have Darkfall Unholy Wars. This game was JUST RELEASED and half of its features have yet to be implemented. Yet somehow it makes it into Greenlight no problem just days after release...

These are two indie games catering to the same niche market. Supporting and promoting one, while ignoring the other is unfair. It really seems like the people making these decisions are being a bit too restrictive and possibly even personally biased in their selections...
Last edited by Malagen; Apr 25, 2013 @ 1:38pm
Sgt.Psycho Apr 25, 2013 @ 2:22pm 
Given that my last comment received such response, as pithy and accurate as I believe it to be, in the interests of Truth I downloaded the podcast.

Wow. That was 72.8Mb of my quota and untold minutes of my life I'll never get back. I have to admit that "Tuesday Actual" was funny, until they beat it into the ground about 36 times.

There is a fair bit more comment (most talking about the War-Z issue) but your transcript is accurate as far as it goes.

Here's the thing: Who decides what is 'a functional thing'? Right now it is Steam and us that makes that decision.

It's only natural that each submitter will be saying, "yeah, yeah, it's all ready to go, it's ready for Steam, that's why I paid $100. Let's go!"

Sadly, for many entries that just isn't true. Too many entries are just out of alpha, let alone beta. Too many have UI/control/support issues that need to be addressed, too many have insufficient game design or performance to really be called 'a game', even at the indie level. Too many developers are blinded by their own genius and unable to see their project with objective eyes. While there are thankfully very few, unscrupulous devs could use (and have tried) to push absolute shovelware through Greenlight, all to make a quick dollar. I don't think anyone wants that in the Steam store.

If you're going to set the bar at 'it installs, and runs without crashing' well than that sets the standard really low. Yes, it functions, but is it worthwhile? If you choose a higher standard, then that is what curation is about, and why Greenlight works the way it does,.

As final call I'm gonna go with this quote @0:12:49
(Talking about the difficulties of curating Greenlight, and Jeff's suggestion to upvote everything)
and I quote them purportedly quoting the Greenlight community directly:
"If you only knew you ♥♥♥♥ing ♥♥♥♥♥♥♥, shut your ♥♥♥♥ing mouth."

Indeed.
Last edited by Sgt.Psycho; Apr 25, 2013 @ 2:22pm
Palad1n Apr 26, 2013 @ 2:01pm 
Just because a game might work does not mean it should be on Steam. Sorry, but it seems like a lot of people and would be developers are trying to get their lacklusters games on Steam for quick money in their pockets.

A lot of games I see here should be slated for hand held devices only, and does not belong on PC games, period. So many poorly thought out game designs, so many bad gameplay experiences here!! In all seriousness, Steam will start losing their rep as a company to do business with if they keep allowing so many crap games to show up here to even get voted.

It's a real shame, we seem to have a lot of mindless people who feel everything should be up voted with no regard to the quality of the game these would be developers are trying to pass on to Steam. There needs to be strict standards and the bar needs to be raised higher for any indie developer to have a shot here, in my opinion.

Go back to school and learn proper game design practices, learn some current game engines which offer FREE use to learn them, then a very nominal fee or willingness to work with you as as a developer, in order to put out a quality indie title.

I may come across a little more rough here, but for the love of real gaming, we need some real standards and need the vast majority of would be developers coming here to be held responsible for creating a quality game, not some simple watered down poor optimized game that might have been seen 10+ years ago on low end consoles.
Last edited by Palad1n; Apr 26, 2013 @ 2:02pm
Gorlom[Swe] Apr 26, 2013 @ 6:47pm 
Originally posted by Palad1n:
Steam will start losing their rep as a company to do business with if they keep allowing so many crap games to show up here to even get voted.
1. Steam is not a company.
2. You REALLY haven't understood the point of Greenlight have you? The point of Greenlight is that the community takes over the first instance of gatkeeping. That means Valve does not deny anyone to submit their game for review.
Originally posted by Palad1n:
It's a real shame, we seem to have a lot of mindless people who feel everything should be up voted with no regard to the quality of the game these would be developers are trying to pass on to Steam. There needs to be strict standards and the bar needs to be raised higher for any indie developer to have a shot here, in my opinion.
Be glad they upvote everything then. If they up vote everything they are negating their votes, and it is the same as if they had voted no on everything. (due to the comparative nature of greenlight)
Last edited by Gorlom[Swe]; Apr 26, 2013 @ 6:53pm
Flotilla Apr 27, 2013 @ 7:01am 
Desura, XBLIG, and the iOS store let every piece of garbage onto their platform.

Look how many people care about those distribution services.
Sgt.Psycho May 1, 2013 @ 2:17pm 
I'll just point out that Papers Please just got Greenlit, stand back, and reap the karma.
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Date Posted: Apr 18, 2013 @ 6:06am
Posts: 20