Valve to Indie Devs: Don't Use Publishers to Bypass Greenlight

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Zachary Amaranth:

SweetWarmIce:
Doesn't that defeat the point of Greenlight?

Indeed, but Greenlight seems so broken it seems moot. It also seems like a dick move to stop people from trying to get a better shake.

They already agreed to the terms of Valve's contract when they entered greenlight. Greenlight is essentially publishing by contest, Valve has a stake in the game's success now by contract. If you contract yourself to another publisher you're only splitting your share of the profits from the contract with valve.

Forgoing the contest violates the financial agreement Valve has with the creators. The contest is a means of gauging public support and interest in the game. Basically it's a means of lowing the risk on investments Valve makes in these indie games. If Valve released the contract they would be throwing away a potentially lucrative contract that they by all right should have a stake in by giving the creators a chance to publish their game.

The real moral of the story is if these creators wanted the option to freely choose such things they shouldn't have agreed to the terms of greenlight. Valve might be the only reason these creators were seen by Adult Swim to begin with, so really Valve is fulfilling their end of the bargain.

Just because a shinier deal comes along doesn't mean it voids your previous contract, that's business and it requires a great deal of forethought to succeed in such an independent venture.

Only reason im quoting is that I have heard alot from the PA devs, and I support them ALOT, so im doing my part.

The thing is, people arent going to say "We will give you money for your game for a cut of the profits" if they arent going to get their investment and more back. That means getting a publishers means that your game has a good chance of being successful.

The thing is, this isnt 'cheating'. The PA devs werent looking for a publisher to get around the greenlight process, they did it to have financial support. Adult Swim then went to Valve and said they would pay all the cost for PA to be published on Steam, and Valve didnt like it. Why should shitty movie tie ins be able to get published on Steam without greenlight, when a good game like this (which I have played and it is great), have to go through greenlight when their expenses are paid. Also, see the quote above yours, theres a reason that Adult Swim is making an investment.

Getting support on Greenlight means near nothing about true interest in your game. Many devs who went through greenlight even said the system is horrible, and that the 'greenlight community' does not give anywhere near a good representation.

Buddy, I hate to say it, but you are leaning to the side of just favoring Valve because they are Valve. Either that, or you just have alot of misconceptions.

First off, Greenlight is Valve's way of making money by keeping good indie games growing in their catalog. The system is only to weed out bad games to games that they can make a big profit on. Your comment about "Valve doesnt have to allow this at all", is null, since they allow it to -make a profit-. They dont have to, but its a large chuck of change they take from their wallet if they dont have it. Also, the PA dev's didnt get a publisher to jump through hoops to get on Steam, Adult Swim picked them up to make an investment with marketing and development so that they could make a -profit- off of Paranautical Activity, which means that it is probably a good game. Adult Swim than went to Steam, because they have a near monopoly on the Digital Distribution platform. (PA is published on Desura and some other site at this point to).

From what I tried to find, Greenlight games are not under contract that they cannot get a publisher. Hell, even community greenlit games can be shot down by Valve. Greenlight pretty much just highlights the games that Valve could make money on. So, PA gets an investor, which says someone big thinks this would make a profit to both them and Valve, and Valve shoots it down because it doesn't like the flaws in its system? Yeah....

Oh, here is one for you. If PA were to of gotten Ubisoft's (or hell, VALVE's attention), would they be allowed to get past greenlight?

Now, to this point that really makes me think you are an apologist for Valve... You say this whole greenlight thing is an altruistic system because Valve cares about indie's getting spot lit, published, and get popular. No.
Greenlight is Valves way to make money off of indie games. Before, Valve had to either go through EVERY indie game to find gems, or publish bad indie games. Instead, they pushed that workload off to the community. The process for Valve pretty much is to make the community find Indie game Gems that they can make -a lot- of money off of. It probably is MUCH more profitable for Valve to have Greenlight than what they had before.

My last point... your example has no relevance to the situation.
1. There is only 1 winner in AI
2. AI doesnt make a profit off of a winner in the long term.
3. Greenlight is not a competition.
4. AI does not have a monopoly on digital Distribution, so it wouldnt be at all bad to drop out of the competition if you were offered -a lot- of money to do your thing with a publisher.

DrunkOnEstus:

StriderShinryu:
You're welcome. :)

It's not really my cup of tea as, while I enjoy rogue likes, I don't really get into super fast twitch style FPS games. It is, however, definitely not a "sci-fi shooter."

Funny story, I was checking my e-mail and apparently I already got this game in a bundle and just never used Desura (kind of a pain in the ass to use compared to Steam). So yeah, upped my bundle donation a bit, installed Desura, activated this, and thumbed up the Greenlight. Desura seems much kinder to the truly indie devs (as compared to the indie "celebrities" we have these days), and it being tied with moddb is pretty cool. So yeah, off to play the beta!

I love Desura. I cannot buy stuff there yet, since I haven't PayPal, but it's as close developers can get in touch with their consumers. Having moddb and indiedb inside, it's the prime example of healthy communication and customization. If there is one digital distribution service I want to succeed and become a true competitor to Steam, it's Desura.
There is a reason why it's full of underground-indies.
Sure, the client needs some love (especially the shop-site), but I love it for what it stands.

Actually, Valve has a 30% take in any game sold from Steam, whether its by a publisher or indie (unless there is a special contract). If they were to publish PA from Adult Swim, than Valve would get the 30%, AS would take their share from the 70% left, then PA would get the rest.

Also, PA was seen by people because they worked their asses off to work with major Let's Players, get interviews with bigger people, and all around get the word out about their game. They gave a hell of a lot of free codes out in the process.

Also, I bet quite a bit that there is nothing in the greenlight contract that says anything about getting off the greenlight system (which you are free to do at anytime), and having a publisher help to pay your way into Steam. That is the major part of why Indie's arent published on Steam, because the cost is a lot more than Indie's can afford, thats where Greenlight comes in. If they find a way over that hump, then its a bad business deal for Valve since not only has the game found a BIG INVESTOR, they can also pay all the operating cost while Valve gets their profits.

This is both a bad business decision and a pad public decision.

Surely you're not indie if you have a publisher?

Greenlight is not optimal but even Indie Devs need to repsect the contracts they enter into.

And in the end it actually ensures that a Indie Devs can stay independent.
In one way or the other publishers want to get their money back.

i like steam, it does all i want and ive never had any issues what so ever with valve by doing this is going to bite them in the ass big time with bad publicity at the very least, they come off like they are kicking an underdog.

but the net generally has the attention span of a gnat so people will forget this in a week or two at best for the most part

EvolutionKills:

DoveAlexa:

Deathfish15:
I can see the issue here: Greenlight is basically it's own Indie-style contract system with Valve. The contract gets 'signed' when the votes and reviews actually give it the 'greelight'. The problem I can see Valve having is that this other competing publisher (Adult Swim Games Inc.) tried signing with someone who's already signed, just to try to go with the same system (Steam). I totally understand why they said "no go" like they did.

Exactly. Valve's principles on this are very reasonable; what's the point of the greenlight system if you can just cheat your way to the finish line (because you have a publisher to front the risky cash instead of steam)? Besides, if they have a publisher now, they aren't indie anymore. Indie means independent of a publisher, as far as I am aware. Not saying that OH GAWD THEY IS EBIL NAO, what I mean is that they don't need to pray to get picked up by someone anymore: they JUST GOT picked up. Sighs of relief all-round.

With this publisher though, if they don't like what steams doing to them, they could just self publish on Adult Swim or their own site, or go with greenman or gog. It's not like steam is some digital overlord that is somehow able to permanently block their sales the world over.

Valve is right in preventing a bad precedent from being set.

I find myself agreeing with both of you. Not because I'm a Valve fanboy, but because you make the most sense.

It's Valve's service, and this is how they've set up to allow indie (without a publisher) games to be released on Steam. Valve doesn't have to offer this at all. Whether or not it's broken or a failure is another debate for another time, this is about Greenlight as it stands now. They had no publisher and approached Valve on Valve's own terms, because Valve controls distribution on Steam. The developers wanted to get on Steam, and they were willing to jump through the hoops to attempt to get there.

Now they have acquired a publisher, but they're still under obligation to move through the Greenlight process. Why? Because it's Valve's program, and unless they have an explicit clause that allows to bypass it if you get a publisher, then you're beholden by your original agreement. The developer still needs to jump through said hoops to get on Steam without a publisher. Now (as far as I know) there is nothing that prevents Adult Swim from helping to advertise the game and it's Greenlight campaign, or to get it published on Greenman or Good Old Games. But the developers are still 'under contract' vis-a-vis their original agreement with Valve. Their new contract with Adult Swim does not negate their prior agreement with Valve.

Now whether or not Valve could or should allow them to back out of their Greenlight and come back as a regular published title is debatable. However they're under no obligation to do so. I can also understand their perspective of not wanting to set a precedent. If they had wanted to allow this to happen, then it would already be in agreement for Greenlight, and this would all be a non issue.

I have no idea what other contributing factors are involved from Valve's end. I imagine that this service is costing them money, in both server bandwidth and manpower. Valve had to set this system up and manage it, and it is a work in progress. Remember what Steam was like at first? You have to give them the much deserved credit and benefit of the doubt, in that their service has evolved for the better; I hope that Greenlight will follow suite.

Imagine a contestant on American Idol halfway through the competition got signed to a record label. Would they then automatically win that season of American Idol? No. They're on the show to compete for contract available to the winner, because their agreement with the show precedes their agreement with another label. Nothing is stopping the contestant from throwing his performance or dipping out of the show. But you're not going to get a contract through the show without finishing the competition. The new contract does not negate the prior obligation. It's not a perfect analogy, but I hope it gets the point across.

I actually thought your analogy fit the situation quite perfectly. At first I wanted to say it was a dick move by valve but after calmly looking at it I could see where they were coming from and I can't disagree with their decision.

Although Greenlight's state or lack their of is a valid topic to discuss. :)

DoveAlexa:

Exactly. Valve's principles on this are very reasonable; what's the point of the greenlight system if you can just cheat your way to the finish line (because you have a publisher to front the risky cash instead of steam)? Besides, if they have a publisher now, they aren't indie anymore. Indie means independent of a publisher, as far as I am aware. Not saying that OH GAWD THEY IS EBIL NAO, what I mean is that they don't need to pray to get picked up by someone anymore: they JUST GOT picked up. Sighs of relief all-round.

With this publisher though, if they don't like what steams doing to them, they could just self publish on Adult Swim or their own site, or go with greenman or gog. It's not like steam is some digital overlord that is somehow able to permanently block their sales the world over.

Valve is right in preventing a bad precedent from being set.

Valve's argument is reasonable, but the devs aren't asking to still be on greenlight, they're asking to be taken off the greenlight page and have their game sold like a regular game. They also didn't cheat, they got lucky and want to go forward and see where this stroke of luck will take them, and Valve is being a dick by saying no. They have every right to be a dick, they are after all a business, but when they say they want to help upstarting developers, this really doesn't show them doing so, it shows them forcing the devs down a very narrow path.

Steam isn't an overlord, but it really does increase a games sales and awareness, so it is unfortunate.

This is the lesser of two evils IMO.

If they let them through without Greenlight then tons of other indie devs will go looking for publishers who'll royally fuck up the games in the pursuit of money.

Greenlight still needs a ton more work though.

I would have been like "we'll let it go this once BUT TO EVERYONE ELSE DON'T DO IT! :@ "

Since the guys already abandoned the greenlight, this is a SERIOUS dick move.

StriderShinryu:
Hopefully this incident gets more people to start seeing Valve for being less than the perfect game industry loving teddy bear. It's a business just like any other, and it holds a near monopoly in the PC digital download space. Despite the huge chunks of profit Valve takes per unit sold, indie developers in particular have no choice but to prostrate themselves at the altar of Valve/Steam because if they don't they'll sell maybe 10% of the copies they would otherwise.

It's also a little disingenuous for the article to call Paranautical Activity a sci-fi shooter. It's basically a rogue like game (permadeath, randomized procedurally generated levels/item distribution, shortish runs from start to finish) in the form a FPS set on what is supposed to be a haunted boat.

Not quite like any other. Valve isn't publicly traded, and while that doesn't automatically make them "the good guys", it does mean that they aren't legally obligated to make profit the guiding light of every decision they make. Which is a good thing.

But you are right: Valve isn't the shining paladin of the gaming industry. They just aren't retarded investor pandering asshats like nearly every other publisher. And that's good enough for me.

I was not aware that greenlight was a prison cell that needs to be "bypassed".

GAunderrated:

EvolutionKills:
*SNIP*

I actually thought your analogy fit the situation quite perfectly. At first I wanted to say it was a dick move by valve but after calmly looking at it I could see where they were coming from and I can't disagree with their decision.

Although Greenlight's state or lack their of is a valid topic to discuss. :)

Definitely, but that's another discussion for another time. With the system that is in place, I find it hard to fault Valve for their decision. It's not an ideal situation, but I don't see this as Valve being 'a dick' or purposely spiteful.

bjj hero:

EvolutionKills:

*SNIP*

I see it more as entering AI and getting signed part way through... Then all of the biggest music stores in the country (who for this analogy, have a financial interest in AI) refuse to sell your music unless you stay on and then win AI. You could always try to selling your CDs at car boot sales instead I guess.

This is a real dick move by Valve but its never a good situation when there is a monopoly, very much like Steam does over digital distribution. Valve have a lot of clout, as an indie/small dev you are highly unlikely to get anywhere without being on Steam.

And to me this looks like valve know this and are using it to bully a 2 man development team. Bravo.

Green light is an awful system. Youre a 2 man team so you work all of the hours you have on your indie title, then Valve expect you to run around whoring for votes instead of working on your game making it the best it can be. If its your only real option then you have to play along but bullying someone into going through with it when they dont have to is the wrong call, unless youre into self serving douchebaggery.

Like I said, it's not an ideal situation. Valve does have a good chunk of the market, but is it any worse than the control that Microsoft has over Xbox Live Arcade? The control that Sony has over Playstation Network? They have actual monopolies over their respective online services and hardware. Valve does not have a monopoly on the PC. This game does have more options for a PC release than it would with a console release. If Microsoft denies your game from being released on the Xbox, you cannot legally circumvent it. So in this regard, Valve's position isn't even as strong as the console makers. Now take into account that Valve DOES NOT OWE ANYBODY a free shot on their digital distribution service. This takes up time and money from Valve, in bandwidth and manpower. They opened the doors to the public, but under a very specific set of circumstances. If they don't like Valve's offer, they don't have to distribute on Steam. Developers have other options (Greenman, GOG, Kickstarter, etc.), maybe not as ideal, but they do have options. If they choose to pursue Greenlight, that is their choice.

Ultimately, it's Valve's service and they make the rules. If you as a consumer don't like it, by all means let Valve know. But they are well within their rights to do what they did, and I find it hard to fault them for it. I can understand wanting to rally behind the underdog, but I don't think anybody is in the wrong here. It's a odd situation and Valve made a judgement call in according to their best interests. They're not evil, they're not being dicks. They are a business making a business decision. Keeping in mind that Greenlight, as broken as it may be, is still a better olive branch to the indie development scene than anything available on the major consoles.

I dont know, this keeps Greenlight from being an advertisement place for indies seeking for publishers, I guess thats kind of what they are going for here.

I said this earlier on Twitter, but this is fucking disgusting and Greenlight is a complete mess. Greenlight should be there to get games on steam who don't get any other sort of backing. As soon as some publisher sees that game and wants to pick it up, they should be allowed to elevate it straight out of the Greenlight process.

Valve has completely dropped the ball with Greenlight, and this is one of the few ways they could've fixed it, but they fucked it up.

Good job.

Do4600:

Zachary Amaranth:

SweetWarmIce:
Doesn't that defeat the point of Greenlight?

Indeed, but Greenlight seems so broken it seems moot. It also seems like a dick move to stop people from trying to get a better shake.

They already agreed to the terms of Valve's contract when they entered greenlight. Greenlight is essentially publishing by contest, Valve has a stake in the game's success now by contract. If you contract yourself to another publisher you're only splitting your share of the profits from the contract with valve.

Forgoing the contest violates the financial agreement Valve has with the creators. The contest is a means of gauging public support and interest in the game. Basically it's a means of lowing the risk on investments Valve makes in these indie games. If Valve released the contract they would be throwing away a potentially lucrative contract that they by all right should have a stake in by giving the creators a chance to publish their game.

The real moral of the story is if these creators wanted the option to freely choose such things they shouldn't have agreed to the terms of greenlight. Valve might be the only reason these creators were seen by Adult Swim to begin with, so really Valve is fulfilling their end of the bargain.

Just because a shinier deal comes along doesn't mean it voids your previous contract, that's business and it requires a great deal of forethought to succeed in such an independent venture.

And if I said this was a "legally untenable move," not "a dick move," you'd be on to something.

Adult swim is doing what now? when did it start publishing games?
Well, once again valve does the right choice. no rnadom publisher in thier system and the indie goes like an indie and not like some shitty game picked up by tv show maker.

Just pointing out that bypassing Greenlight resulted in games like The War Z.

There are a few problems here:

1) Steam has such a large market share of PC downloads that they're almost to the level of a monopoly. In fact, many Steam users will outright refuse to buy a game that isn't offered on Steam even if the non-Steam copy has no DRM. This greatly effects whether a game is successful or not to the point that whether indie developers sink or swim. You have the odd success that doesn't use Steam like Minecraft but they're very much rare exceptions.

2) The Greenlight process is very much built on a system of popularity rather than quality. For instance, the Angry Video Game Nerd game got greenlit despite the fact the game hasn't been released and there's no way to be certain that this game will any good. The game simply managed to sail through due to popularity.

3) Valve allows various indie games to jump the Greenlight process already. What games are allowed to this and what aren't is very opaque. These games aren't selected simply based on quality as games that are widely panned somehow are allowed to skip the Greenlight process. See Revelations 2012 as one of those games.

Of course, the argument in favor of Steam's curation is that they don't want Steam to become the uncurated mess that is XBLIG and want Steam to filter based on quality.

Here's what I'd suggest that Valve do and this is not a new idea. Simply allow the games in the Greenlight queue that have been created to be sold though Steam on their Steam Greenlight pages. Games are moved from Greenlight to the main store page by how much they sell or may be moved to the main page based on the quality of the game when they are reviewed. Games selected based on copies sold can be moved at set intervals while games selected based on quality don't have to wait. So, if Paranautical Activity gets the attention of Valve through a publisher and Valve finds out it's a quality game, then Valve instantly moves it to the main store page.

It's a far more transparent system and allows games to be not arbitrarily held back from Steam.

Strazdas:
Adult swim is doing what now? when did it start publishing games?
Well, once again valve does the right choice. no rnadom publisher in thier system and the indie goes like an indie and not like some shitty game picked up by tv show maker.

Except Adult Swim has already published two very well received games on Steam (Super House of Dead Ninjas and Super Puzzle Platformer Deluxe). They are just getting into game publishing, yes, but A.) everyone has to start somewhere and B.) by most accounts they've started out pretty well so far.

rhizhim:
no, really. thats a big dick move just binding everyone who dared to put up a page on your site and not let them back off when they find something potentially better.

Valve's thought process is quite simple. They don't want, quite rightly I might add, for Greenlight to become a shopping cart for publishers to skim off of which is exactly what it would become if they allowed this.

rhizhim:

no, really. thats a big dick move just binding everyone who dared to put up a page on your site and not let them back off when they find something potentially better.

I think you misunderstood. They can back off any time they want but if they do that then they can't put their game on Steam anymore. Which i guess makes sense. I mean it's like saying "Screw you Valve, i found someone better" and then coming back and asking for a spot on their platform.

Then cancel the greenlight submission. Allot of people will probably come to steams defense because of Valve but Steam has been in the wrong for a long long time.

They are a horrible service. They just have the largest market share. They rarely if ever actually thoroughly play and review the games they put on their service. They basically outsourced the entire process to the fans which gave birth to greenlight, one of the most horrible hype based systems in existence. Where quality doesn't matter for shit and it really is just buz that gets you on the store.

The WarZ do I need to say more?

Steam needs to shape up their game. They need to start taking that responsibility that any store has to take. If I get sold a broken item by a store, the store is the one responsible for it.

So these guys managed to land a publisher. To them this is great news. It saves them some trouble and possibly reaches a wider audience. Now they have to go back to competing with a bunch of other games and depending on their popularity they will get in or rejected.

Now all this means is that the game will be delayed for a while and after the greenlighting is done can be put up on there under the publisher. However why bother with this retarded delay? It makes no sense other than arbitrary time limits because they signed up to the broken Greenlight system.

Steam needs to take a long good hard look at themselves because right now I do all my shopping elsewhere whenever it is possible.

I don't understand.

Greenlight is for indies to attempt to self publish (which is misleading, as it is a petition to have steam publish you). If they later find a publisher why can't they cancel their request?

If I were these guys I'd rebrand my game and have adult swim publish it as if it isn't the same as the one in greenlight.

Charli:
...I thought the point of a ...publisher, is to get you published, isn't greenlight for people lacking in that capability or unwilling to go that route? Surely if it's being 'published by adult swim' it would be able to be released on Steam without going through the voting process.

Or was it ON greenlight and then Adult Swim backed it on it's channel?

And is it being published or being backed? Big difference here.

If it's being 'backed' by adult swim, then yes, they should just go ahead with the greenlight process as any would.

If it's being published, then it should be removed from greenlight and sent through the channels for games with that attached to them.

If this mess is cropping up because Adult swim decided to become a publisher for it while it was already on Greenlight then... they should see about removing it.

Again this is all based upon whether the game is being published or backed.
If they bend the rules for one case it leaves the door open for alot of other 'bending the rules'. Maybe the rules need to be clearer but this is what happens when you do something for the first time. Green light needs refining there's absolutely no disputing that fact, but this can all be avoided by just taking the game off of greenlight if the game is really being published.

Edit: Okay sleep deprivation typing is never good. I've sorted the mess out in my brain. But the end result is the same, surely they can just erase all the campaigning they've done and the greenlight process and just barrel on ahead fresh with Adult Swim publishing them?

They can't do that because Valve won't let them on Steam if Adult Swim publish there game that's why they had to

EvolutionKills:

DoveAlexa:

Deathfish15:
I can see the issue here: Greenlight is basically it's own Indie-style contract system with Valve. The contract gets 'signed' when the votes and reviews actually give it the 'greelight'. The problem I can see Valve having is that this other competing publisher (Adult Swim Games Inc.) tried signing with someone who's already signed, just to try to go with the same system (Steam). I totally understand why they said "no go" like they did.

Exactly. Valve's principles on this are very reasonable; what's the point of the greenlight system if you can just cheat your way to the finish line (because you have a publisher to front the risky cash instead of steam)? Besides, if they have a publisher now, they aren't indie anymore. Indie means independent of a publisher, as far as I am aware. Not saying that OH GAWD THEY IS EBIL NAO, what I mean is that they don't need to pray to get picked up by someone anymore: they JUST GOT picked up. Sighs of relief all-round.

With this publisher though, if they don't like what steams doing to them, they could just self publish on Adult Swim or their own site, or go with greenman or gog. It's not like steam is some digital overlord that is somehow able to permanently block their sales the world over.

Valve is right in preventing a bad precedent from being set.

I find myself agreeing with both of you. Not because I'm a Valve fanboy, but because you make the most sense.

It's Valve's service, and this is how they've set up to allow indie (without a publisher) games to be released on Steam. Valve doesn't have to offer this at all. Whether or not it's broken or a failure is another debate for another time, this is about Greenlight as it stands now. They had no publisher and approached Valve on Valve's own terms, because Valve controls distribution on Steam. The developers wanted to get on Steam, and they were willing to jump through the hoops to attempt to get there.

Now they have acquired a publisher, but they're still under obligation to move through the Greenlight process. Why? Because it's Valve's program, and unless they have an explicit clause that allows to bypass it if you get a publisher, then you're beholden by your original agreement. The developer still needs to jump through said hoops to get on Steam without a publisher. Now (as far as I know) there is nothing that prevents Adult Swim from helping to advertise the game and it's Greenlight campaign, or to get it published on Greenman or Good Old Games. But the developers are still 'under contract' vis-a-vis their original agreement with Valve. Their new contract with Adult Swim does not negate their prior agreement with Valve.

Now whether or not Valve could or should allow them to back out of their Greenlight and come back as a regular published title is debatable. However they're under no obligation to do so. I can also understand their perspective of not wanting to set a precedent. If they had wanted to allow this to happen, then it would already be in agreement for Greenlight, and this would all be a non issue.

I have no idea what other contributing factors are involved from Valve's end. I imagine that this service is costing them money, in both server bandwidth and manpower. Valve had to set this system up and manage it, and it is a work in progress. Remember what Steam was like at first? You have to give them the much deserved credit and benefit of the doubt, in that their service has evolved for the better; I hope that Greenlight will follow suite.

Imagine a contestant on American Idol halfway through the competition got signed to a record label. Would they then automatically win that season of American Idol? No. They're on the show to compete for contract available to the winner, because their agreement with the show precedes their agreement with another label. Nothing is stopping the contestant from throwing his performance or dipping out of the show. But you're not going to get a contract through the show without finishing the competition. The new contract does not negate the prior obligation. It's not a perfect analogy, but I hope it gets the point across.

The thing is when Adult Swim offered to become there publisher they wanted to leave greenlight but Valve said if they did they would not allow there game to be on Steam at all which a death sentence for indie games in today's marketplace.

This leaves them with a choice get published by Adult swim and get no sales or stay on greenlight on the off chance one day in the future Valve will put there game on Steam and then maybe get sales.

SL33TBL1ND:
I said this earlier on Twitter, but this is fucking disgusting and Greenlight is a complete mess. Greenlight should be there to get games on steam who don't get any other sort of backing. As soon as some publisher sees that game and wants to pick it up, they should be allowed to elevate it straight out of the Greenlight process.

Valve has completely dropped the ball with Greenlight, and this is one of the few ways they could've fixed it, but they fucked it up.

Good job.

This.

Real dick move, right here. I was already at the point where i didn't want to buy anymore steam games (the DRM, non-standard game files and forced updates piss me off) and the only thing that was keeping me on steam was their support of indies and not acting like dicks.

So now they've gone ahead and acted like dicks to and indie.

If this were ANY other publisher, people would be condemning them for pulling off such a BS move.

But since it's Valve, all the bullshit lines of defense publishers usually pull out are actually being brought out by the gamers, and are even insulting the developer, calling them "lazy" or "cheaters" (really? so when the greenlight campaign didn't work, they were just supposed to roll over and do nothing? so finding an alternative method which dozens of other developers use is "cheating"? fucking really?).

I like Valve, but Greenlight isn't working.

teebeeohh:
I get why valve did this but ky god greenlight is broken, at this point I am not sure if they shouldn't just shut the whole thing down instead of having it run till replacement greenlight comes around

What would you replace it with? Someone has to slog through the montain of games and valve figured it might as well be the potential market. See, Greenlight is a way for Valve to sort out the competent games from the crap games. IF you can get X number of up votes well then there are at least X people that see what you have as a good product. See how that works?

The biggest complaint *I* have is that dear god there are a lot of crap games going up there. And I'm not just talking about graphics I mean the games are just shite. To dat I've voted on no less than 1000 greenlights...sat to say I've only up-voted about 200.

As is they are free to let the greenlight tiome out and then do whatever they want or ... go to a different digital distributor lok Greenman or Gog.

BigTuk:

teebeeohh:
I get why valve did this but ky god greenlight is broken, at this point I am not sure if they shouldn't just shut the whole thing down instead of having it run till replacement greenlight comes around

What would you replace it with? Someone has to slog through the montain of games and valve figured it might as well be the potential market. See, Greenlight is a way for Valve to sort out the competent games from the crap games. IF you can get X number of up votes well then there are at least X people that see what you have as a good product. See how that works?

The biggest complaint *I* have is that dear god there are a lot of crap games going up there. And I'm not just talking about graphics I mean the games are just shite. To dat I've voted on no less than 1000 greenlights...sat to say I've only up-voted about 200.

As is they are free to let the greenlight tiome out and then do whatever they want or ... go to a different digital distributor lok Greenman or Gog.

someone from valve (i think it was gabe) said in an interview that they are working on another system to get indies onto steam but because that won't be done for years they implemented greenlight.

Valve has every right to do this. It is their program, and despite how utterly shit it is, legally speaking, it is their right to be able to act like total assholes. Just like EA with their always on SimCity. And everyone loves that!

All sarcasm aside, whether or not Valve has the technical right of it, that doesn't make it any less a dick move. Greenlight is broken, and if you ask me it's somewhat worse than before hand. Someone has to go through all the indie games to see which ones are worth going on steam, so do we trust the system where a professional goes through them all, or the one that leaves it up to the whims of a small community that actually visits the Greenlight page, and even then games get completely buried under it all and probably never seen. At least the professional way all games get a fair and equal shot at being seen and recognized. Instead, we get this system where you cast the die and see how it goes.

And now, when the creators of a game have the chance to make it, their being forced to jump through the arbitrary hoops of random chance to being able to get their game on a decent platform. Steam itself is a good service, probably the best in terms of distribution by digital means for the PC. But Greenlight is just so broken.

Fuck Valve.

No, I'm serious. Fuck 'em. This is the sort of low-down, corporate shit I'd expect from a company like EA or Activision. I've already been vocal in my criticism of Greenlight before. This makes the whole damn process look even worse. It essentially turns Greenlight into a deal with the devil. Even if you never get through Greenlgiht, you apparently still oew Valve your allegiance, despite them doing exactly jack shit to help you as a developer.

I hope a huge stink is made over this. And I hope it causes Valve to take a long, hard look at themselves. Because right now, they have taken the PC platform, the platform that is supposed to be the most open, the most free, and made it look like some sort of Kafka-esque joke. I've said it before, but when Nintendo and Sony are running DD networks that are easier and friendlier towards indie developers, then Valve have no excuse. Either they start making the effort to actually curate what goes onto Steam, or they lose more and more of the indie developers who are supposed to be a mainstay of the PC market.

Valve is actually a company and not a thousand Jesus clones with C++ knowledge? I AM SHOCKED!

Come on, guys. Steam is the Microsoft of indie publishers and they're gonna defend that until the day they shut down. If they can contractually strongarm a small publisher like Adult Swim into not taking a cut of stuff, they're going to.

What are AS gonna do? Go Desura only?

CrossLOPER:
Just pointing out that bypassing Greenlight resulted in games like The War Z.

They didn't bypass Greenlight for a simple reason. The company had successfully published a game on Steam already and that make them exempt from Greenlight completely.

What the absolute fuck, Valve? When did you become EA?

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