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Bwah? - Neal Stephenson's CLANG, 39 Others Greenlit

Maybe Valve should put a yellow light in front of Steam Greenlight, because it needs to slooooooooow down – for just a second or two, anyway. I mean, don’t get me wrong: I’m all for tons of games getting the go-ahead to drown in sweet, sweet Greenlight green, but this week’s batch included – among a few other questionable/forgettable picks – Neal Stephenson’s CLANG. You know, the one whose development has been mostly halted and may not ever reach completion? Admittedly, Stephenson claims it’ll get finished no matter what… somehow, but maybe Valve should’ve held off until it was in a less questionable position? Or given the slot to a more deserving game? With improvements come new complications. Guess it’s true what they say: it’s not easy bein’ green(light).

Here’s the full list of newly greenlit games:

Paradise Lost and Sokobond already had my attention, and I’m really looking forward to seeing more from the likes of 9.03m, an art game based on the ramifications of Japan’s 2011 tsunami, and Bollywood Wannabe – if only because I’ve always wanted a Bollywood game. I’m less familiar with a lot of the others, and some look rather, um, unpalatable.

Going back to CLANG, meanwhile, I find it quite odd that Valve would give it a pass in the wake of the whole Dark Matter debacle. One game nearly sinks but decides to cast off half its content to make a mad paddle for Steam’s fruitful shores, and yet Valve greenlights a game that – if, worst case scenario, funding never materializes – could pull a similar, “Welp, here’s what we’ve got” switcheroo? That seems like a terrible oversight.

Again, I’m happy that Steam’s widening the Greenlight floodgates, but that approach is clearly yielding troubles of its own. Worst of all, I’m not sure if there even is an ideal outcome for Greenlight in its current form. Valve seems pretty determined to justify its existence, though, so I wouldn’t count on it going dark any time soon.

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Nathan Grayson

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