Valve Now Lets Devs Run Their Own Sales

Valve Now Lets Devs Run Their Own Sales

Prepare for even more wallet assaults in the future.

While there is the occasional dissenter, most people agree that buying games for less money is a good thing. While the ancient world revolved around various religious calendars, the modern one seems to rotate based on seasonal Steam Sales. Between the huge winter and summer celebrations are a regular rhythm of weekend sales and weeklong deals. Now, things are going to get even more crazy as Valve has handed control over to developers to run their own discounts, effectively making anytime saletime.

The update to the Steamworks developer tools was spotted by Reddit user Sharkiller. It allows developers two different options for discounting their wares. They can either opt-in to join one of the sizable Weeklong Deals and get free promotion, or simply set their own custom discount and do it themselves.

Back in the early days of Steam, some developers had an aversion to the service because Valve wasn't just a content distribution platform, it was also a competitor. Today, they join because that's where the customers are. Moves like this and Greenlight go a long way to make Steam as neutral a platform as possible. It also lets us stuff our libraries with even more games, which can only be a good thing.

Source: Reddit

Permalink

More individual sales, and the major group/holiday sales still happen? Sounds like a win-win!

IanDavis:
Back in the early days of Steam, some developers had an aversion to the service because Valve wasn't just a content distribution platform, it was also a competitor.

Nowadays, Valve is more of a haberdasher than a game maker, so I can see why other devs are less worried about the competition.

I hope this doesn't stop some of the games getting offered at a discount in the midweek and weekend deals, I probably pick up more games from those over the year than I get during the big ticket Summer and Winter sales.

DataSnake:

IanDavis:
Back in the early days of Steam, some developers had an aversion to the service because Valve wasn't just a content distribution platform, it was also a competitor.

Nowadays, Valve is more of a haberdasher than a game maker, so I can see why other devs are less worried about the competition.

Truth be told Valve has always had a 'slow and steady approach to game development. When they release something.. it's big, it's good and it kicks ass... you know like Blizzard used to be.

It will be interesting to see how other devs deal with this.

Does this mean Valve no longer decides what sale prices are? Cause if so we can say goodbye to ever seeing most AAA titles going for more than 10% off. It's still mindblowing to me that Call of Duty -Not Modern Warfare, the original Call of Duty- is going for twenty bucks.

The only problem is that this allows devs to 'discount' their games to make it seem as though they're giving the consumer a deal. Sort of how stores have "Holiday sales". When really they just marked up the price with the intention of making it look like a deal that is limited or 'scarce'.

Mcoffey:
Does this mean Valve no longer decides what sale prices are? Cause if so we can say goodbye to ever seeing most AAA titles going for more than 10% off. It's still mindblowing to me that Call of Duty -Not Modern Warfare, the original Call of Duty- is going for twenty bucks.

Valve never decided the sales prices to begin with (aside from their own titles). Developers/publisher had always the last word on it.

Crimsonmonkeywar:
The only problem is that this allows devs to 'discount' their games to make it seem as though they're giving the consumer a deal. Sort of how stores have "Holiday sales". When really they just marked up the price with the intention of making it look like a deal that is limited or 'scarce'.

I too think this is going to happen at least with some developers. Why put your game up for 10 when you can put it up for 20 with a constant 50% discount and make it look like great value. Hopefully Valve have thought about that and put some restrictions in place to at least limit abuse.

I see...I see...AAA publishers adding a 5-10% discount to all their games to get free advertising on the front page.

Mcoffey:
Does this mean Valve no longer decides what sale prices are?

They never did in the first place (except for their own games, of course).

As someone who's had Call of Duty and Call of Duty: United Offensive on their wishlist for 4 years, I agree that their price is preposterous, but the only way for them to go on sale is for Activision to actually bother with their old titles... Between the billions in revenue from the newer CoDs and Blizzard's games, I don't think they give a flying fuck.

Crimsonmonkeywar:
The only problem is that this allows devs to 'discount' their games to make it seem as though they're giving the consumer a deal.

That's a power they've always had.

People seem to mistake Valve for a retailer, like they have to buy and store specific amounts of physical stock that may or may not get sold, where they have the freedom to slash prices to try and sell off said stock...

Choose your own discount?

Halo for $1.17.
Call of Duty for $13.37.

SourMilk:
I see...I see...AAA publishers adding a 5-10% discount to all their games to get free advertising on the front page.

That the kicker, if they choose the custom option, Valve will not put them on the front page from what I understand.

Sales on games: good
Sifting through 600 entries on the specials list because every shovelware POS has been put on 99% sale: not so good

Case in point: the current week long 'special' on Orion: Dino Horde.

What I would really like to see from steam (other than a used game market) is the ability to blacklist games for yourself that you have absolutely no interest in buying or playing for any price so you never see them again and they won't keep repeatedly adding themselves to your library during free weekends (like a certain Ghost(s)).

Mcoffey:
Does this mean Valve no longer decides what sale prices are? Cause if so we can say goodbye to ever seeing most AAA titles going for more than 10% off. It's still mindblowing to me that Call of Duty -Not Modern Warfare, the original Call of Duty- is going for twenty bucks.

Valve never decided what the sale prices were, the publishers always did. Given activision and Blizzard I doubt you'll ever see any of their good games for less than 20 dollars.

CriticalMiss:

I too think this is going to happen at least with some developers. Why put your game up for 10 when you can put it up for 20 with a constant 50% discount and make it look like great value. Hopefully Valve have thought about that and put some restrictions in place to at least limit abuse.

There are already a few in place with the new system. Including, but not limited to, a two week duration limit on any given sale and a "grace period" between the initiation of a proposed sale and when the sale actually takes place.

So devs won't really be able to disguise their marked up games as sales. The price will always revert to the base price after a period of time.

BigTuk:

DataSnake:

IanDavis:
Back in the early days of Steam, some developers had an aversion to the service because Valve wasn't just a content distribution platform, it was also a competitor.

Nowadays, Valve is more of a haberdasher than a game maker, so I can see why other devs are less worried about the competition.

Truth be told Valve has always had a 'slow and steady approach to game development. When they release something.. it's big, it's good and it kicks ass... you know like Blizzard used to be.

It will be interesting to see how other devs deal with this.

I'm glad that I am not the only one who has noticed that Bliz is off that bandwagon.

As for how other devs will deal with this, I don't see it as an issue for devs in general. In fact, it should be a boon to them (other than EA since they don't want to play nice). This pretty much allows them to set their own revenue spikes at will (sales are intended for revenue spikes and not steady income), as well as being beneficial for those online games when the numbers start slacking off in the servers.

Is that *developers* or *publishers*? Note: as far as Steam is concerned, indie developers are considered publishers internally.

As long as the Summer and Winter sales and community event things still happen im still happy. Valve be making so much money thou and no HL3

barbzilla:

BigTuk:

DataSnake:
Nowadays, Valve is more of a haberdasher than a game maker, so I can see why other devs are less worried about the competition.

Truth be told Valve has always had a 'slow and steady approach to game development. When they release something.. it's big, it's good and it kicks ass... you know like Blizzard used to be.

It will be interesting to see how other devs deal with this.

I'm glad that I am not the only one who has noticed that Bliz is off that bandwagon.

As for how other devs will deal with this, I don't see it as an issue for devs in general. In fact, it should be a boon to them (other than EA since they don't want to play nice). This pretty much allows them to set their own revenue spikes at will (sales are intended for revenue spikes and not steady income), as well as being beneficial for those online games when the numbers start slacking off in the servers.

It's sorta hard not to notice Blizzard's slide.

The thing about these sales is that the devs can't do them willy nilly. A smart sale has to be well timed. for example, wehn is the best time of the month to hold a sale? It's not an easy question, end of the month sounds liuke a good idea in theory. because hey, people get their monthly pay checks, even the fortnightly folks; problem is, that's usually when the bills become due, so it may not work out very well.

Poor sales events or outright abusive sales events , Yes I am looking at You GoG.com., can actually embitter customers against you. It's a powerful tool to be sure but like any powerful tool, it can horribly maim you if used improperly.

They didn't already? Not impressed.

However,Valve is noticing that they're losing godwill amongst both developers and consumers and they are hoping changes like these will turn it around.

 

Reply to Thread

Log in or Register to Comment
Have an account? Login below:
With Facebook:Login With Facebook
or
Username:  
Password:  
  
Not registered? To sign up for an account with The Escapist:
Register With Facebook
Register With Facebook
or
Register for a free account here