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Valve: Downloadable Content Will Remain Free

| 23 May 2007 14:05

Against the backdrop of a rising trend to charge for value-added downloadable content, like custom maps, several Valve employees firmly told Gamesindustry.biz their company was not going to follow suit.

Valve operates the online game store, cyber cafe and authorization network, Steam, where an increasing number of games, both new and old, have trickled in over the past several months.

"You buy the product, you get the content," Team Fortress 2 designer Robin Walker told the news site's sister source, Eurogamer.net. "We make more money because more people buy it, not because we try and nickel-and-dime the same customers."

Valve Marketing Director Dough Lombardi said the Counter-Strike model heavily influenced the company's line of thinking.

"Counter-Strike is number one and has been since '99 because we kept the game interesting, not because we tried to charge people more, and that's come back in sales of Counter-Strike," he told the publication.

That's not to say the company is eschewing all post-purchase revenue, however. Valve co-founder Gabe Newell said in-game advertising remains on the table, and will soon be implemented in Counter-Strike. Newell said it would give flexibility to smaller developers, allowing gamers to try their products for "free."

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