More Games Added To Steam In 2014 Than All Of 2013

By Nathan Grayson on May 16th, 2014 at 10:00 am.

You have probably noticed lately that the Steam store’s “new releases” tab is crowded and confusing and like being in an overstuffed subway station where you’re looking for your friend but you have no idea where to begin and maybe they’re dead and an incredibly ragged-looking man just asked you for cigarettes or maybe a needle and your shoe has been glued to germ-infested tile by gum or maybe oh gosh that’s not gum is it but it does rhyme with gum. There are suddenly a whole, whole lot of games on Steam, is what I’m saying, and they won’t stop crawling out of the woodwork. You’re not alone in this realization. Not by a longshot. We’re not even halfway through 2014, and Steam has already added more new games than it did in the entirety of 2013.

Gamasutra published a statistical comparison of Steam’s past few years, and the trend they discovered is less of a gradual climb and more of a box turtle suddenly sprouting jet boosters and mutating into a (very well-shielded) reptilian rocket.

While they didn’t provide exact numbers, the overall impact is clear. Thanks to a much quicker (and, many would argue, far less selective) Greenlight process, Steam has suddenly become far, far more crowded. What does that mean? Well, developers have an uphill battle ahead of them, for one thing:

“There have now been more games released on Steam in the first 20 weeks of 2014 alone, than during the entirety of 2013, spelling out the real need for indie developers to properly market their games.”

“While in 2013 your new release might have shown up on the front page of Steam for a few days, you’re likely to see your game drop off the front page within 24 hours of you releasing it. (And notably, the front page of Steam now automatically defaults to ‘Top Sellers’ instead of ‘New Releases.’)”

And of course, it also makes it much, much harder for folks like you and me to discover new top-quality games directly through Steam. Valve is no longer a careful, meticulous curator, a fact that will become even more glaringly apparent once Greenlight goes away altogether. That responsibility now falls on the shoulders of users, YouTubers, and trusted media outlets like VIDEOGAMING NEO WEBSECTOR ROCK PAPER SHOTGUN DOT COM.

The long-term effects of all this change will be interesting to watch, though they might also cause Steam as we know it to crash and burn. One would hope Valve will revamp the store to give more developers visibility for longer periods of time, but even then an open, fast-moving marketplace means everyone will be fighting tooth and nail to be top dog. To stand out. I don’t really see how this goes down without an Apple App Store-style race to the bottom for game prices, which is a shame because a) games aren’t cheap to make and b) that brought about an era of (sometimes very questionable) free-to-play tactics in the App Store’s case.

However, if nothing else these are uncertain times. None of that will necessarily transpire. It just seems likely given the current state of events. But PC is also not mobile, and Steam is not the App Store. Different audience, different legacy, different types of games. And Valve might make big missteps sometimes, but they’re also a damn clever company. I’d be lying if I said my Trepidation Station wasn’t getting more use than my Hope Box One right now, but I’m not ready to forecast doom and gloom yet. Just an earnest desire to see everyone (especially Valve) adapt and improve.

Now then, let us join hands and bring a prayer to the almighty GabeN. Repeat after me: Please don’t fuck everything up. Please don’t fuck everything up. Please don’t fuck everything u– Is it true that you used to own a chandelier made of knives?

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93 Comments »

  1. Eight Rooks says:

    A thought -

    One would hope Valve will revamp the store to give more developers visibility for longer periods of time, but even then an open, fast-moving marketplace means everyone will be fighting tooth and nail to be top dog

    - has there actually been anything from the Bearded One suggesting that ultimately there will even be a Steam Store? As in, one run by Valve? I’m assuming that basically the onus for this kind of thing will be on RockPaperShotgunDotCom, or Kotaku, or Destructoid, or whoever out of the ten thousand individual store fronts we’re going to end up with, and that Valve will no longer have any hand in pushing games through Steam at all.

    • frightlever says:

      Also, you can either give a few developers more exposure or more developers lesser exposure. Pretty sure you can’t do both without diluting the exposure altogether.

      • trjp says:

        This is true – however I found-out recently that your first week (or thereabouts) of sales is something Valve use to determine how much exposure you get from thereon-in.

        Developers are not supposed to talk about those aspects of their ‘deal’ but someone let slip that failing to hit a certain level of sales in that time meant they didn’t get to stay in the ‘banner’ at the top, didn’t get featured or promoted in other areas and wouldn’t be guaranteed spots in future sales promotions.

        On that basis – how would you feel if your game was pushed out of the “New Releases” list by a flurry of DLCs, older games or other things which you have no control over and who’s developers/publishers aren’t reliant-upon to pay their bills?

        Steam can’t continue to take the “we are the premium store” attitude if they treat developers poorly – they take a fair chunk from each sale – they need to offer something for that cut.

        • RobF says:

          That’s not entirely true. Yes, they’ll no doubt look at how well you’re doing but they’ll also give banner time if something goes wrong at launch, if they think the game is good and needs a leg up and lots of other reasons. Also, developers can book themselves in for banner time although that now requires pushing an update out with a lengthy description of what you’ve been working on.

          But if you want to make sure people know your game is out, relying on Steam’s New Releases probably isn’t smart anyway. I’ve always seen stuff like that as a multiplier not the starting point.

    • phuzz says:

      I’m sure there’ll be a Valve store in time for HalfLife 3′s release.

  2. snv says:

    Just taking the release amount is useless. It’s not just greenlight stuff that robbs that figure of meaning. It’s Early Access, DLCs, Mobile Ports and HIdden Object Games and more trash like that, which make the “new releases” lists of online shops (in general) increasingly useless.

    • trjp says:

      Early Access games don’t appear in the Steam “New Releases” list.

      Some people like the other types of games – removing them is just assuming everyone is as narrow-minded as you are ;0

      The solution isn’t removing anything – it’s changing the Storefront to give more space to new games – to give users the tools to filter what they see.

      We’ve had “Recommended for You” in Steam for years now and it makes NO attempt to recommend anything – it just parrots your own choices and makes a few (often erroneous) guesses at what’s on sale.

      That’s what they should be working on

      • Shuck says:

        Their recommendation engine functionality was complete non-existent when they introduced it, and I assumed it would be fixed by now. Recommendation systems are a tough nut to crack, but I think they simply haven’t had the data they needed to make it even begin to function – they introduced it well ahead of the tag system, for instance. Now they have the tag system and it does something, but it does it poorly. (It’s still recommending games on my wishlist – that’s not a recommendation, that’s just parroting, and I’ve suspected that the “similar to games you play” list is actually, at best, games [superficially] similar to games I own but have never actually played. How helpful.) It’s one of a number of systems they really need to already have functional if they want this non-curated strategy to have any hope of working.

    • Borsook says:

      DLCs are also hidden by default

    • shamann says:

      Yeah, the back catalogue shovelware is the bigger offender. Since Greenlight’s launch, only 311 games have passed through the system to release as of today.

      It feels like publishers like Strategy First, Humongous Entertainment, and Libredia have released that many combined just in the past fortnight.

  3. Artist says:

    “The long-term effects of all this change will be interesting to watch, though they might also cause Steam as we know it to crash and burn.”
    Eh? Rubbish?!

  4. Cinek says:

    Wasn’t it RPS arguing that Greenlight should be less restrictive and more open to public, voicing their concerns against greenlight voting system? So now when they release more games on the Steam – it’s bad too? Sometimes it’s just impossible to make people happy, is it?

    • SuicideKing says:

      Yeah…i noticed this too.

    • derbefrier says:

      damned if you do, damned if you dont

    • Frank says:

      Yeah, RPS should stfu about business matters if this is the best they can come up with. Interview some devs or their accountants, eh. At least this is better than quoting Pachter.

    • Mitthrawn says:

      Yes, RPS has been maddeningly bipolar about whether less or more curation is a good thing.

      From John Walker’s greenlight post last October, Greenlight Releases 100 Prisoners, Sanctions Lightened:

      “Being cleared through Greenlight doesn’t mean a game is close to release, of course. Just that when it gets there, it’ll have a spot on the virtual shop shelf. (You know, like how unread books have to be voted to appear on Amazon… no, wait.)”

    • subedii says:

      Glad someone else pointed this out. There was constant angsting beforehand about Valve and the Steam store and how they “hurt” indies by not including them . And RPS was very much a part of that.

      Now they’re releasing more titles and the angst is flowing the opposite direction.

    • The Random One says:

      While RPS does seem to hold this schizophrenic opinion, I see no evidence of it in the present article. Nathan only says that some people say standards have slipped (which is true – many people do say that) and that it may damage Steam (but also that it may not and he’s just speculating).

    • disconnect says:

      Wow, it’s almost as if these posts are all being written by different people.

  5. CobraLad says:

    Someday they’ll be out of Putt-Putt games…

    • bstard says:

      There’s hope! New pre early access design consideration concepts of new putt-putt’s.

  6. Namey says:

    Steam is quickly turning as bad as mobile app stores and places like XBLIG, and the various recommendation tools are nowhere near sophisticated enough to help find games you’d actually want.

    • Henke says:

      I have the opposite problem, I’m finding _too many_ games I want. My backlog keeps getting bigger and bigger.

      • Cinek says:

        You should learn how to be more picky. ;)

      • Namey says:

        I know, I just can’t pick anything either. Just look at this killer roster of the 5 latest games released on Steam!

        http://i.imgur.com/er1YI7v.png

        (edit) Looking at the store page for Freddi Fish 3, Steam also helpfully suggests me the following similar games:

        http://i.imgur.com/f2FCxhb.png

        • podkayne says:

          Jesus, 7 euros for those games? I thought they were likely overpriced at 7 dollars, which is what they’d charge me.

          • nitehawk says:

            They would be overpriced as a free-to-play…. assuming your time is worth something.

      • Smoky_the_Bear says:

        Yep, I quoted on the same thing below. These games are not only crap they are old, really old, one of them is from 1994 ffs, and they are taking up prime spaces on the front page of steam. The store needs more moderation/auditing to keep this crap off the front page and/or better searching and filtering tools so people can filter out these pointless, turd-like games that are being thrown on Steam daily.

        • Male White Corporate Oppression says:

          Nobody is asking you to play children’s games but it’s pretty embarrassing to act like the HE catalog is shovelware. HE was founded by Ron Gilbert and Shelley Day after they left LucasArts and are very well designed and charming point and click adventures. They are probably not of much interest to people who aren’t either nostalgic for them or have children but they are a terrible example of worthless shovelware.

  7. Terragot says:

    And yet, the amount of games I purchase has been in year on year steady decline.

    • Cinek says:

      For me it’s more or less the same if you’ll include crowdfunded games. If not – then yes, I agree – amount of games I buy at the release goes down.

    • Frank says:

      For me, this is happening because I’m finishing my collection of historical releases (e.g., Vamp: Bloodlines).

  8. secuda says:

    Sigh quality over quantity.
    I dont want it to turn in to something like Play or IOS market.

    • Smoky_the_Bear says:

      I have no problems with people being able to sell any game they want on Steam (with the proviso that it must be a FINISHED game because all this early access crap is nonsense), but Steam needs more organization in the same way a physical store does. The crap goes to the back of the shop and thrown wherever they can find a spot for it. The good stuff is given prime placement where people can see it.
      This is the problem with Steam. It’s not the amount of stuff being put on there, it’s that people throwing their back catalogues of 10 year old garbage onto Steam are pushing quality new releases off the “new releases” tab. There are statistics out there proving that being on that tab grants a significant sales boost, this benefit is being lost because of all the crap being deposited daily.

      Perfect example at the moment, as I type this, Humongous Entertainment have dumped 5 games on Steam, labelled as “casual, adventure”. They look like kids games with such names as “Putt-Putt and Fatty Bear’s Activity Pack” and “Freddi Fish 3: The Case of the Stolen Conch Shell”. Release dates for these 5 games range from 1994 (no I didn’t mistype that) to 2001.
      These games, being sold at £5 a pop no less, have all but pushed Men of War: Assault Squad 2 off the new releases list (it is the last in the list of 10 now, the next title on there and it is pushed off). This is the sort of crap that Steam needs to stop happening. If people want to dump all their titles on Steam then fine, stop giving them pride of place on the store front of Steam. It’s the same thing as “Spy Fox 3: Operation Ozone” somehow managing to get a spot in the window of a physical game store, which would never happen.

      • secuda says:

        I dont mind Valve putting upp old games, but like you say its a different when they say its new when its clearly its not.

        • Sparkasaurusmex says:

          Yeah it’s stupid that when they put up an old game they always list its release date as the date it went up on Steam.

          • Martel says:

            I’d say it’s worse than that because they don’t always do that. You can find plenty of games with a release date older than Steam but then a game released around the same time will show up with the Steam date as its release date.

          • secuda says:

            Because when devs are releasing new indie titles that looks like old games,and when steam is posting legit old games people seems to get confused.

      • Shuck says:

        ” It’s not the amount of stuff being put on there”
        But it is, ultimately. What you’re asking for is a type of curation – putting the “crap” in the back and highlighting the “good” games. Right now they’re largely relying on publishers with whom they have existing relationships and “the crowd” to do the curation, but as you say, that’s not working. What you’re asking for is for Valve to curate their offerings themselves. You can’t curate without going through every game being put in the store and evaluating it, and the more games being put in the store, the more people you need to curate. But the whole reason Greenlight exists is because Valve didn’t have the resources to do that.

        • SkittleDiddler says:

          Valve have the resources to do all that. They just don’t want to because they’re lazy.

          • Shuck says:

            Debatable. I also wouldn’t characterize not wanting to hugely expand the amount of money they spent curating games to be laziness. What they absolutely don’t have the resources for – what no one has the resources for – is to offer “any” game up for sale and also curate them.

          • SkittleDiddler says:

            Well, they probably shouldn’t be offering “any” game up for sale then.

            Valve are a billion-dollar company. Don’t be fooled into thinking they can’t afford to properly curate their own store no matter what they’re selling.

  9. mlaskus says:

    “Valve is no longer a careful, meticulous curator…”

    Uh, despite the strange popularity of this opinion, Valve were never curating the store.
    Steam was always full of shit games that got there through a publisher.
    The only difference is that the screening process for indies is now similarly simple to get past.

    • Cinek says:

      Only there publishers were limiting shitty titles – here, now, every game that got enough clicks can get into the store, no matter the merits – as it can be quite clearly seen by browsing the recent releases.

      • Baines says:

        Greenlight isn’t where the flood of offending titles are coming from. It is coming from certain publishers now dumping their entire back catalogs onto Steam. Something that has nothing to do with Greenlight, and which I believe was happening to a lesser extent before Greenlight existed.

    • Smoky_the_Bear says:

      Yeah at least pre-Greenlight publishers were controlling what they released. Not everything will always be good but publishers are turning down a heck of a lot of games before they get made, it also gave consumers a limited number of releases to look through before they decide what to buy. Now EVERYTHING is getting dumped on there via Greenlight and it has turned into a royal clusterfuck.

      • Frank says:

        I remember, what, a year ago, when RPS was still writing articles bemoaning how slow Greenlight was. Those were the days, I tell you.

      • Smoky_the_Bear says:

        Yep I believe they were protesting for more of their precious indie titles to get onto steam. Now it’s a case of “oh look, another roguelike platformer”.

  10. MartinWisse says:

    Of course if developers get less time on the front page that means Valve could start selling that time and get even more money for their money bins.

  11. Lexx87 says:

    The sheer number of new indie games on the New Releases list is insane. I can’t keep track or have time to click any of them, so I don’t. They might be gems but I wont know unless RPS post about it.

    I’m still playing games from 5 years ago let alone ones released now.

  12. theworm says:

    Well Cliffski from Positech Games (Gratuitous Space Battles, Democracy, etc.) seems convinced that Valve know what they’re doing and have a plan to ‘solve’ the glut of games in some way – he went to a Valve Indie meet-up in Seattle: http://positech.co.uk/cliffsblog/2014/05/10/the-future-of-steam-vr-and-other-seattle-stuff/

    • trjp says:

      That’ll be Cliffski who changes him mind about stuff more often than someone with serious brain damage?

      He hated Sales – he hated Steam – he hated being called an Indie

      He attends a Steam Indie Sales thingy – I’m amazed he didn’t go postal on them all ;0

      • theworm says:

        Well we are all free to change our opinions in the face of new evidence that contradicts them, but I guess it’s easier for most people to dig their trench deeper than go over the top and admit it, especially in public.

        • Cinek says:

          And how many times can you change your opinion before you start looking like a fool without an opinion at all?

  13. PC-GAMER-4LIFE says:

    Most are shovelware garbage though.

    Valve have ruined Steam no wonder they want to seperate it from the Steam client. In the past 2 years Valve have made some very weird business decisions not sure where they are heading with it either its not like the laughable Win 8 app store was ever a competitor.

    Valve overreacted the result is all these unwanted games & a clogged up store, trading cards, greenlight & early access with no guarantee the devs will not run away with the money…………..

    • Kaeoschassis says:

      Breaking news: Valve ruins Steams forever!

      If I were in a more malicious mood, I’d throw a thematically appropriate TVtropes link in here. You basically deserve it for that comment.

    • Baines says:

      I highly suspect that Valve never really wanted to run a store, and certainly didn’t want to run the behemoth that is Steam.

      They just had one of their great ideas/whims, made a store, and found it was a lot of work and not as much fun as they thought it would be. And have been phoning it a minimal effort ever since.

      • RobF says:

        “And have been phoning it a minimal effort ever since.”

        And that’s how they became the biggest PC games store in the world? Lucky break.

        • subedii says:

          If only the GFWL store had taken off instead.

        • Baines says:

          You left out the preceding “and found it was a lot of work and not as much fun as they thought it would be” that gives a time frame for the “ever since” part that you decided to quote.

    • TechnicalBen says:

      There might be one obvious direction they are going in. Sell Steam.

      Either 1) to make lots of money.
      2) To make lots of money.
      3) Or to make lots of money.

      Oh, it could be to divide it off for monopoly/tax purposes. Or because they really stopped using common sense, and now just follow mathematical analyses for profit driven decision making. Or because they wish to sell it, to make another small version of Steam to do it all over again. I’d only expect them to do it that way, over the way FaceBook was sold, because Valve actually like doing this, so if they sell they won’t stop making software and platforms.

  14. trjp says:

    I look at the Steam Store many times every day and 99% of what I see is the same content – how can you have such a premium bit of the Web and make such poor use of it?

    It’s 2014, that page should be a bangs-and-whistles user-customised experience par-excellance.

    The problem with Steam is that Valve really put far-too-little effort into it. Most of what Steam contains has been static for years – changes take eons – and when new stuff appears it’s half-baked and stays-that-way for ages.

    Take “Recommended for You” – it makes little attempt to Recommend anything, just reminding you of the same game you already picked for your Wishlist – often claiming it’s on-sale when it isn’t etc. etc.

    It’s not like we’re asking for Half Life 3 – we know they are working on stuff but it appears they work in mime or something because it takes them forever to do very, very little…

    • Frank says:

      Yeah, what this guy said. If they had any MBAs there, they would have set up a decent recommendation engine long ago and put it front and center. At least they have email reminders when stuff goes more than 50% off.

      • Philotic Symmetrist says:

        You mean when stuff on your wishlist goes on sale you actually get an email?

        • Sigh says:

          Yes, but it is possible that you have to enable it in your Steam settings. Take a look next time you have your client open.

          The email system is a little wonky and I don’t quite understand why it emails me for some of my wishlisted games, but not others. The email system also seems to really break down during the major Steam sales in my experience.

    • Baines says:

      I particularly liked when the “Recent recommendations by friends” part of the Recommended page included a game that a friend had actually thumb downed.

    • epeternally says:

      Spot on. The problem isn’t the number of games on Steam, it’s Steam itself. Valve needs to put more work into making Steam a better piece of software – more sorting options for your library, a better optimized store page, and a world class recommendation system. At this point, Valve really need to do a whole new GUI from scratch again, and they need to hire people who specialize in graphic design, GUI, and recommendation engines to do it, not have game developers do it badly as has happened so far.

  15. The Sombrero Kid says:

    The free to play mechanics came to the app store because the dominant gamers in mobile didn’t mind games that worked that way, the rest flooded into steam in their droves and if steam started working that way they’d move on again. Non free to play games aren’t under threat as long as their are people willing to pay for games that don’t do it.

  16. JFS says:

    I was a big Steam fan, but I am only using Steam every odd month now, and have been for nearly two years. There’s lots of problems with Steam: the pricing is off, the UI is terrible and wonky, there’s no useful browsing/rrecommendation tool, Greenlight morphs around like some Cthulhoid madness, Early Access sucks, too many unneeded TF hat/trading card/Steam inventory embellishments.

    I’m using GOG, bundle sales and Kickstarter nowadays to get games, or buy directly from the developer. Most of my kmowledge about new games comes from RPS or diverse online forums. It’s okay that way, but I’d rather have a useful central resource for staying in touch with the sprawling world that PC gaming has become.

    • MkMax says:

      you forgot that the steam app will keep harassing you with ads for games you already own :p

      ive also been using gog a bit lately and while i like their no drm tagline im not completely convinced by their store

      their sales are not very good (the insomnia one is a huge waste of time), it doesnt seem to be any predictable pattern for discounts, discounts are often offered in huge packs of games (at least you are not forced to buy the ones you own again)

      i was also quite irked during one of my last purchases when i realized that, had i bought witcher 2 on steam (for the exact same price!) i would have gotten both the steam and gog version, but with the gog version there was no steam key, (guess where im buying witcher 3 ?)

      they also do not participate from bundles or “multiplatform” sales like the ones on humble bundle, drm free versions are usually hosted by the bundle site, why not giving a gog key ?

      • Hahaha says:

        The Humble Weekly Sale “Celebrating Open Source!” had a GoG key

  17. DThor says:

    These are all pretty much the sorts of problems you get with success and growth, and while there are some good basic ideas being thrown around, steam seems to be doing pretty well for a product “ruined” by valve. Sheesh, people, perspective. I agree the flood of obvious crap games is a problem, all that is needed are accurate tags, for example, any game that has had it’s code touched longer than 2,5,10 years ago would probably filter out 80% of the serious garbage. Make a dev submit this with the game. “unknown” = 20 years and lying is a steam – banning event for the dev. Will there be abuse? Sure. Would it still be better than what it currently is? Yep. Steam could also go all curatey and cut their catalogue by 60%, but look at Apple and the ios store. Sorry, I’d rather have the more choice/more crap model of Android over Apple’s self-righteous censorship.

    • RobF says:

      Steam’s a bit broken at the mo being obviously between two states but apart from that, it’s not been ruined, no-one’s livelihood is being crushed because of Valve right now and more games are still able to make more money than before. So yeah, all this is a bit weird.

      Right now once a week on a Thursday people have to click the next button once or twice to see all the new releases when the publishers dump their games. Year on year, Valve have been adding more titles than the year before to Steam as they get their processes sorted and crucially, as more and more people are able to make games and sell them in a way that more people get to see them. (Steam/social media/journalism now taking an active interest in smaller titles outside of 2 back pages etc…)

      And most of what’s released on a Thursday isn’t shitware anyway, it’s just not-we stuff. It’s casual games, kid’s games and back catalogue stuff. Gabe Newell’s plan has always been to get EVERY game on Steam. That’s been the plan from day one. It’s never been a “carefully” chosen set of games or curated or whatever, it’s been a mix of small games Valve let on where they had to be a bit more selective but only because they had no system in place to put more on and a flood of publisher stuff that’s both good and bad. What it’s been very good at is hiding most of the stuff out the way.

      All this drama over this being the end of a Steam as we know it, it’s a flood of games and so on, it’s a crock of paranoid silliness. Valve repeatedly open the floodgates to more stuff and it seems all it really takes for people to notice is one day a week where the curtain gets pulled back and you see what they’ve been doing in increasing amounts for years in one block.

      There’s many problems with Steam. The library is broken with a lack of organization, slow searching, the community takes you through a thousand windows to do what you want and there’s stuff everywhere. The store needs updating and it will be updated before the year is out, I don’t doubt that, but it’s still doing fine at selling videogames for now and the floodgates opening proper will finally mean all those games people want on Steam can be there. And just like now, they’ll be surrounded by games people don’t want as well.

      The key thing to remember that wonderfully keeps getting forgotten is just because one person doesn’t want them doesn’t mean nobody does, hence yeah, bang on that tagging and stuff will help sort this out. But as with everything videogames, god forbid other people should be allowed near them as far as loads of people are concerned :(

    • MichaelGC says:

      Not disagreeing, but it’s also not as if the self-righteous censorship doesn’t also result in mountains of crap.

  18. Borsook says:

    I love the faster pace of releases. I am on steam each day, every day and now finally, there is something to see. Before most days were really boring. So, personally, I welcome this change a lot!

  19. Megakoresh says:

    I am not sure how to feel about this…

  20. dE says:

    Well damn, now I feel like a goddamn prophet of the ages. I foretold this. The idea that indies were going to have a harder time when more of them are admitted on the service. Got tared and feathered by the folks around here too. It was all “open the gates, let the games be freeeeeeee! They will all dance and prance in the sunlight of commercial success and frontsite exposure” and “well you just want to oppress games you gaming hitler dictator stalinist”.

    So, with a pretty smug grin and all: From the spirits that I called, Sir, deliver me!

  21. Frank says:

    Wow. I disagree with everything you say.

    Steam was never an effective curator. Even if it were, we shouldn’t mind the departure of such.

    Selling lots of stuff does not an App Store make. Even if it did (whatever that means), um, there’s not actually such a tight relationship between prices and prominence on Steam’s “new releases” these days, I bet.

    Finally, if you’re “not ready to forecast” maybe consider laying off phrases like “I don’t really see how this goes down without …”

  22. Mittens89 says:

    Steam needs to ask the user two questions:

    What games do you like playing? (select as many options as you like from a list)

    What games do you not like playing? (select as many options as you like from a list.

    Following this, the front end of the store should go like this:

    Hi, User! Based on your favourite types of games, we have helpfully and deliberately chosen these similar games that may interest you.

    Would you like to add any of these games to a list, so that if they go on sale, you will be notified?

    Underneath that should be this:

    You own this game. Here is a list of DLC, expansions, sequels that may interest you.

    Behind this front end, have the rest of the store, neatly ordered by genre/developer/price/whatever you like, in any combination you like.

    Done.

    • MkMax says:

      Have you seen Netflix’s recommendations for liking “Breaking bad” ? having Dragon ball Z and Grownups among others there do not make me very interested in that sort of thing

      Offering DLC for games you own could get out of hand VERY quickly but they could have a list of the ones you dont own in the game’s library page (with an option to hide it tho)

      that said i wish the store would stop offering me games i already own and let me tag games i dont care about as “i dont care about this game stfu about it” (a blacklist to complement the wishlist maybe ?)

  23. Shooop says:

    Valve never was a careful, meticulous curator of Greenlight. They’ve allowed games which are outright scams on there like Guise Of The Wolf.

    The most underhanded ones though are the phone games that are being advertised as completely new games. Valve has basically given up trying. The only things I’d recommend buying from it are major published titles on deep discount and whatever you know you want but can’t get any other way. For everything else, go to GOG or directly to the source if you can.

  24. MkMax says:

    IMHO the tag system could have just the thing to help game discovery, that is, had they not killed it because some ppl couldnt take the jokes and too blind to accept them as a normal part of the feature that gets sorted out by itself as more ppl press on the useful tags, sigh

    btw, Im actually not just having problems with the steam store, im having problems sorting my own library, one “genre” setting is not enough, i wish they implemented tags there as well

  25. Polifemo says:

    I thought Steam was just a place you used to buy and organize games you read about on the internet with the added condition that you log on for achievements and being pestered by other human beings while you’re trying to play a game.

    Now I hear people BROWSE it? Man the world is full of all kinds of crazy.

  26. Spider Jerusalem says:

    well then.

  27. HisDivineOrder says:

    Do people actually go to the Steam front page on a normal, regular day and go, “Hey, I want to buy a game at regular price today!”

    I thought we all waited like crows in nearby trees until a Steam Sale hit and then suddenly we were everywhere. Picking at the horribly disfigured sales-littered bodies of today’s victims. 66% off, 75% off, 90% off, free for today only. Caw caw!

    One watching out for the others while two or more of our brothers eat our fill of multipacks. Then we switch places and someone else buys the multipack on 90% off so then he can have his fill.

    Caw caw! No one goes to the Steam page and says, “I feel like buying a new game today. I wonder what regular priced game I’ll buy today.”

    That’s lunacy. Seriously. I’m telling you. Anyone who does that just installed Steam and hasn’t figured out the rules of the Steam game yet. You know them because by the next weekend deal or Wednesday deal or weeklong deal or publisher deal or hell one of the annual steam sales, you see them screaming to high heaven they JUST paid full price yesterday/two days ago/last week/last month and NOW it’s on sale.

    Everyone tells them the single rule of Steam: never buy at full price.

    So why would anyone go to the front page of Steam except during a Steam sale when the sales will be clearly delineated? Because they’re a newb that must go through the hazing process of paying full price ONCE. Then they learn better.

    Dude. Learn better. ;)

    • malkav11 says:

      I make a regular practice of keeping an eye on the new releases tab, actually. Not because I intend to ever buy any of those things at full price (usually they’re preorderable if I really want them at launch and at least then there’s a tiny modicum of discount most of the time), but it’s a good time to add it to my wishlist if I’m interested. Because having a wishlist of interesting games makes it way easier to tell when they go on sale, and the only discoverable moment for a lot of games is when they hit that new releases tab. Once you have to search Steam’s back catalog? Ugh. No thank you.

  28. malkav11 says:

    I’m quite irritated by the top sellers tab being the default. There’s no useful information there, and because of the way Steam’s main page is coded you can’t check out a new release now and just go straight back to the new release list, you get snapped back to top sellers every time. Bleh.