Steam Greenlight

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Transientmind Nov 11, 2012 @ 2:53pm
Don't Greenlight games until they're finished.
The first few batches of Greenlit games have come through, and I am disgusted to see Alpha and Beta-stage games up for sale. Often the only way you can tell this is from visiting the forum pages for that game, before you buy.

This is not cool. This is not Kickstarter. Steam is where I go to buy and play real, finished games. I've upvoted all sorts of cool-looking games which have been in alpha stages, on the understanding that they would only be put up for sale, "When they're ready." Alpha is not ready.

Now. If Steam wants to create a new 'Alpha release' section of the store, cool. Do that. Give us a prompt, even, on the log-in updates that says, "One of your purchased games is no-longer a ♥♥♥♥ing unplayable bug-riddled mess! Re-install it and try it again if you can get past that sour taste in your memory!"

But that feature does not exist yet.

So UNTIL then, please vote down games which are not finished. Leave a comment saying why. Let the developers re-submit their game or something when it's actually in a state where we'd be OK with buying it. Because Steam isn't stopping alpha releases from going up for sale at the same price as full games, with little to no warning. And developers, bless their hearts, are not going to be able to resist the temptation to get as many sales as quickly as possible, while they're still developing. That's why a lot of games fail - they run out funding. Let's not mess with that. Because it's Darwinism that protects our Recent Release list from looking like a steaming pile of ♥♥♥♥.

Dear Steam:

You have provided several years of quality games distribution. The recent addition of alpha-stage games to your new release list is like biting into a worm in an otherwise delicious apple. Since you won't fix the problem, please give us the tools to.

Please add an option for us to vote, "Interesting, but not voting til it's finished," so we can give a fair shake to those developers who are using Greenlight as advertising in-development, community-building, or getting more funding through other websites or sales of the alpha at Desura et al.

But not here. Please help keep Steam trusted.
Showing 1-15 of 76 comments
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FRAUKOUJIRO Nov 11, 2012 @ 3:40pm 
They aren't for sale, just Greenlit.
jontycampbell Nov 11, 2012 @ 3:52pm 
Originally posted by Erinduck:
They aren't for sale, just Greenlit.
Quite, two things differing, what?
Transientmind Nov 11, 2012 @ 3:53pm 
You've missed the point. Once they are Greenlit, the developer can put them up for sale. Whether they're finished or not. There is no more quality control. Alpha builds are OK for sale as far as Steam is concerned, which means we're relying on devs to not post the first build they have to try and get some money as soon as possible to finish the game.
FRAUKOUJIRO Nov 11, 2012 @ 3:53pm 
Originally posted by Watcher:
You've missed the point. Once they are Greenlit, the developer can put them up for sale. Whether they're finished or not. There is no more quality control. Alpha builds are OK for sale as far as Steam is concerned, which means we're relying on devs to not post the first build they have to try and get some money as soon as possible to finish the game.

No they can't. The developer can not put a game up for sale until it is complete and has gone through Valve's QA process. So no, you've missed the point and did no research at all. Good job!
Last edited by FRAUKOUJIRO; Nov 11, 2012 @ 3:54pm
Transientmind Nov 11, 2012 @ 3:54pm 
Originally posted by Erinduck:
No they can't. The developer can not put a game up for sale until it is complete and has gone through Valve's QA process. So no, you've missed the point.

Bzzt. Go look at the Towns forum or play the demo. Alpha. Not finished. Cortex Command is another example (which I admittedly didn't try personally) of the overwhelming discussion response being that it's still not finished and requires a batch of community-made mods only available on a website elsewhere to become remotely playable.
Last edited by Transientmind; Nov 11, 2012 @ 3:57pm
FRAUKOUJIRO Nov 11, 2012 @ 3:59pm 
So one of your examples is a game that has an outdated tutorial and your other is a game that was released on Steam before Greenlight. And you casually glossed over Terraria too. All these games are functional and good games. They are not "incomplete" but unpolished. But I suppose next you'll say that there are no unpolished games on Steam either.
Transientmind Nov 11, 2012 @ 4:07pm 
Why would I look at Terraria? That's ages old. Cortex Command was released post-Greenlight, but I'll admit that since it didn't have the tag, it may have been working its way through the system before then.

And the tutorial isn't the issue with Towns. Go read the forums and check their wiki. It is in alpha.

Now sure, there's nothing to prevent a team from hastily re-labelling their alpha as beta or even release and moving on from there, but what I am calling for is for people to only vote for games which the devs are actually happy to stand behind and proudly call 'finished'.
Released. Demos or available for sale elsewhere (link their own store page, or Desura or Impulse or whatever).

If you've spent much time looking at Greenlight submissions you'll notice a truly overwhelming number of videos of test footage in what is a clearly unfinished game, but technically 'playable' enough to qualify for a Steam release.

If these guys get a whole mess of votes while they're still in that stage, trading on hopes and good vibes about how development will go, instead of producing something that people are actually willing to buy? It's the easy option and starving indie developers WILL do it. People who vote are the only gatekeepers for that.
Last edited by Transientmind; Nov 11, 2012 @ 4:08pm
マイカル Nov 11, 2012 @ 5:05pm 
I feel for ya cuz i hate when it when the games unfinished and they end up selling it (aka towns, tho at least we have gnomeria i guess to do better)
But greenlight is about supporting a game of interest to the players on steam. No one will know about it otherwise.
so idk :/
See Starbound which won't be on steam till its done, nor playable until finished, is doing what your suggesting. Except there skipping the greenlight stage straight to steam.
And cause of this, your right, the developer will make sure its good. Though Tiy is wanting to do a good job so that helps.

Hmm its a mixed issue, and i agree with you :/
Arale//Zero Nov 11, 2012 @ 9:28pm 
You can't buy games that are Greenlit. You wait until they are Released. :/
Transientmind Nov 11, 2012 @ 9:33pm 
'Released' does not equal 'On Steam'. In short: Don't Greenlight incomplete games, because of the risk of developers 'releasing' them as soon as they meet the Steam requirements, (instead of when the game is actually ready) so they can get cash as soon as possible.

A game which has been Greenlit is going through the process of supplying a playable build to valve, arranging the installation, negotating price, etc.
Last edited by Transientmind; Nov 11, 2012 @ 9:34pm
Skoardy Nov 12, 2012 @ 2:53am 
So we're picking games following the highly successful Minecraft business model and beating up Greenlight for selling "unfinished products" now, are we? Good grief...
Transientmind Nov 12, 2012 @ 3:05am 
No, we're embracing Greenlight as an excellent way to help finished games gain entry to a major league distributor. Which is a big ♥♥♥♥ing difference from spamming the storefront with every hopeless piece of indie crap whose author could afford $100 entry licence and some pie-in-the-sky unproven promises.
Kristoffer Nov 12, 2012 @ 7:11am 
This looks like you're butthurt about Towns not being what you wanted it to be.

Hardly any games have been released through Greenlight and out of those few games that is the only one that could qualify as "in alpha". It's not the term you're looking for however and you're blowing this way out of proportion.
C0untzer0 Nov 12, 2012 @ 7:29am 
It can't possibly be on sale and in Alpha at the same time, they are mutually exclusive states.
Skoardy Nov 12, 2012 @ 7:50am 
Originally posted by Watcher:
Which is a big ♥♥♥♥ing difference from spamming the storefront with every hopeless piece of indie crap whose author could afford $100 entry licence and some pie-in-the-sky unproven promises.
And since that's not what is happening (two games? spamming? sky falling much?), we've got nothing to worry about. There's making a mountain out of a molehill and then there's you, with no molehill to start with.
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Date Posted: Nov 11, 2012 @ 2:53pm
Posts: 76