While generally, Steam is considered the most efficient way to purchase games for your PC, many users have complaints with the service. In reaction such grievances, Steam announced they are removing Steam Greenlight and replacing it with another style of distribution.
In a release on the Steam News page, the company announced Steam Greenlight will be replaced with the service “Steam Direct”. Steam Direct is slated for a spring 2017 launch and will work as a direct sign-up service for developers. While the service is still being hammered out, the post outlines a set of rules for developers to follow.
“We will ask new developers to complete a set of digital paperwork, personal or company verification, and tax documents similar to the process of applying for a bank account,” reads the news briefing on Steam.
Steam Direct will also require a publishing fee from developers, which, based on conversations with said content creators, could range from $100 to $5, 000, though it doesn’t seem to be concrete yet. Steam admits they want more feedback on that front.
Steam Greenlight has been a bit of a sour point with fans in recent years. Allowing any developer to add their game to the steam market regardless of quality. Steam admitted that the company moved away from more of a storefront model to a “direct distribution” model, making it easier for lesser quality titles to slip through the cracks. “Asset Flipping” became a common theme among many greenlight titles, making it harder for quality games to really make a name on the storefront.
“To solve these problems a lot of work was done behind the scenes, where we overhauled the developer publishing tools in Steamworks to help developers get closer to their customers. Other work has been much more visible, such as the Discovery Updates and the introduction of features like user reviews, discovery queues, user tags, streamlined refunds, and Steam Curators,” reads the news post.
Still, Steam admits they’ve learned a lot from the Greenlight experiment, stating that they’ve learned some of the playing habits of their users.