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Video Game News: Game developers don't think Steam's 30% cut is justified

Gautam Nath
73   //    25 Jan 2019, 07:27 IST

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Last month, Epic Games announced that they are launching their own game store, where developers can take 88% of the money sold on their store. Steam, the gargantuan publisher who has been around since 2003, only gives developers a 70% cut.

A recent survey, where nearly 4000 video game developers were asked whether Valve's 30% cut is justified, found out that 32% (1/3rd of the developers) of the developers do not feel like their cut is justified. Only a meager 6% thought that their cut was justified. Another 27% also said "Probably not". The "Maybes" and "Don't knows" only came at 17% each.

Survey from Game Developers Conference 2019
Survey from Game Developers Conference 2019

So it is clear that game developers are not happy about it. Why would they? Everyone wants more money. Another threat to Steam's Store is the Discord Store which offered developers a whopping 90% of the money made from games sold!

Valve also offers an additional 5% cut if a game has made more than $10 million in sales. That is not an easy target for many games to make, especially indie developers and medium-sized companies.

How does this affect you as a gamer?

For gamers, this is probably great news. The competition between corporations means that everyone wants you, the gamer, to buy from their store. So you can expect discounts and free games from the different stores. The bigger cut from Epic Games and Discord also means that indie developers have much more incentive and lesser risk to develop and release games.

The only people this will badly affect is Valve, who will need to step up their game to give better incentives to gamers and developers. Although they may be the giants in the industry, with many features unique to Steam such as Workshop and Forums, the bigger cuts from other competitors is already posing a serious threat to Valve.