Wednesday, 2 September 2015

Steam Greenlight and Free to Play

Like most gamers, I love Steam. It's a handy, portable, digital library with a huge variety of both mainstream and indie titles. I also like the Greenlight feature as it not only gives consumers a say, but it gives developers a way to build interest and get feedback on a product prior to its release. However, there's a genre of game where Greenlight is falling apart; Free to Play.


For those who aren't overly familiar with Greenlight, the Free to Play tag is used both for traditional free to play games and any other games that developers decide they want to release for free. However, when I've gone to leave my feedback I've noticed that a lot of people will either;
  1. Say yes just because it's free
  2. Tell off other people that don't say yes.
It's quite obvious that the logic of this is that if it's free, we are better off for having it than not. I disagree with this. In fact, I think that automatically Greenlighting Free to Play is bad for the players, the developers and for Valve.

The primary purpose of Greenlight seems to be to allow smaller developers access to Steam, but also to act as a buffer to prevent the store being flooded with low quality games. Saying yes to everything will fill the Free to Play section with junk and make it so much harder to find the games worth playing.

Secondly, if we immediately accept everything free on Greenlight, then developers don't get as much feedback as they could. This means the final product aren't as polished as they should be resulting in more negative reviews, which is bad for the developer.

Finally, and most obviously in my opinion, Valve obviously believes that Free to Play games should be judged and be rejectable, otherwise they would have every title with the Free to Play tag bypass the process all together. 

No comments:

Post a Comment