Valve changes developer terms to try to retain top games

(credit: Aurich Lawson)

For years, game distribution platforms like Steam, GOG, Apple’s App Store, and major game consoles have generally taken a 30 percent cut of any revenue made from online game sales. Now, Valve is moving to change those terms to be more generous to Steam developers, but only for the absolute biggest games on the service.

In an announcement posted late Friday, Valve said that it would lower its usual 30 percent take to 25 percent for any game’s earnings beyond $10 million (including “game packages, DLC, in-game sales, and Community Marketplace game fees”). The platform fee reduces further to 20 percent for earnings that surpass $50 million.

“The value of a large network like Steam has many benefits that are contributed to and shared by all the participants,” Valve writes in the announcement. “It’s always been apparent that successful games and their large audiences have a material impact on those network effects so making sure Steam recognizes and continues to be an attractive platform for those games is an important goal for all participants in the network.”

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