Valve changes revenue sharing for Steam to allow successful developers to earn bigger percentage cut

Dusk Golem

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Oct 25, 2017
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https://steamcommunity.com/groups/steamworks#announcements/detail/1697191267930157838

With that in mind, we’ve created new revenue share tiers for games that hit certain revenue levels. Starting from October 1, 2018 (i.e. revenues prior to that date are not included), when a game makes over $10 million on Steam, the revenue share for that application will adjust to 75%/25% on earnings beyond $10M. At $50 million, the revenue share will adjust to 80%/20% on earnings beyond $50M. Revenue includes game packages, DLC, in-game sales, and Community Marketplace game fees. Our hope is this change will reward the positive network effects generated by developers of big games, further aligning their interests with Steam and the community.
They also are changing some other things in the system, but so many people have complained about Valve taking a 30% cut (despite being the industry standard and what literally Nintendo, Sony, and Microsoft take), but they've updated it for successful games to keep more of their earnings. Curious what Era thinks of this due to seeing the 30% argument come up a lot in the past.

We’ve also made a change to the agreement regarding confidentiality of your sales data. We frequently get questions from partners who want to talk with other developers\third parties or publicly about the sales of their games on Steam. We've heard you, and we're updating the confidentiality provisions to make it clear that the partner can share sales data about their game as they see fit.
Some other small changes include that developers now can publicly reveal sales data if they see fit (so not needing to be a trade secret technically) and adding some safety warnings to VR on Steam itself before usage so each individual game doesn't need to list the basic VR warnings each time for people's personal safety. Also talk about upcoming tools and things in development a bit.
 

Doctor Ironic

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Oct 30, 2017
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This is definitely less to appease arguments about indie games and more to encourage AAA publishers to use Steam instead of their own launcher.
 
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Dusk Golem

Dusk Golem

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Krejlooc

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This has always been the case, 30% is not an actual official standard. Notice how none of their developer portal documents mention a 30% cut.
 

Gabbo

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Oct 25, 2017
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With that in mind, we’ve created new revenue share tiers for games that hit certain revenue levels. Starting from October 1, 2018 (i.e. revenues prior to that date are not included), when a game makes over $10 million on Steam, the revenue share for that application will adjust to 75%/25% on earnings beyond $10M. At $50 million, the revenue share will adjust to 80%/20% on earnings beyond $50M. Revenue includes game packages, DLC, in-game sales, and Community Marketplace game fees. Our hope is this change will reward the positive network effects generated by developers of big games, further aligning their interests with Steam and the community.
So only break out massive hit indies and the usual triple a titles will ever see this.
 

Mass_Pincup

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Oct 25, 2017
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So this will most likely lead to an increase in the average prices of games on the platform right?
 
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Dusk Golem

Dusk Golem

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Oct 25, 2017
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This has always been the case, 30% is not an actual official standard. Notice how none of their developer portal documents mention a 30% cut.
This is officially making a set hardline limit and goal towards it though, and changing the official documentation. I think setting a line in the sand is an appropriate way to handle it, and to be transparent about it.
 

jalenralphyeje

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Oct 27, 2017
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This is the type of thing I've been saying they needed to do all along, find ways to provide pubs an incentive to still release their games on steam things like this just might be it. Now the pubs have to bite, let us buyers choose where to buy.
 

Madjoki

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Oct 25, 2017
3,080
We’ve also made a change to the agreement regarding confidentiality of your sales data. We frequently get questions from partners who want to talk with other developers\third parties or publicly about the sales of their games on Steam. We've heard you, and we're updating the confidentiality provisions to make it clear that the partner can share sales data about their game as they see fit.
This is great too.
 

Calabi

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Oct 26, 2017
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Sounds like they are just trying to keep the main publishers happy and on their platform.
 

antispin

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Oct 27, 2017
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They should also do this for the other side of the bell curve: until you reach a certain revenue threshold, our cut is 10/20%.
 

Zushin

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Oct 25, 2017
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Australia
So will this make a tangible difference in the publishers using Steam in the long run? I doubt EA is going to come back even with the increased cut for example.
 

Deleted member 300

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Oct 25, 2017
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I hope no one here uses those takeaway places like just eat or deliveroo if they hate the 30% cut so much
 

Arulan

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Oct 25, 2017
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The criticism of the 30% cut relative to the rest of the industry was always a joke considering how much they do for that cut, in addition to avenues to bypass it completely by distributing Steam keys elsewhere.

This change seems aimed at enticing breakout hits and/or larger publishers that may feel the popularity of their product can attract purchases outside of Steam to stay.
 

galv

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Oct 25, 2017
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era: "lol fuck valve 30% cut greedy bastards, taking an industry standard cut and they DARE to make profits"
valve: "so we are reducing the 30% cut for games which are successful as a reward for business they bring to steam"
era: "wow fuck you valve, fucking indie haters smh, only good games get less cut???"
 

Ametroid

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Oct 27, 2017
5,038
Obvious they did this to prevent big companies selling elsewhere like their own storefront and to make more of their games available to sell through Steam
 

Dinjoralo

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Oct 25, 2017
1,815
Well, it's the big publishers that's leaving, right?

Anyway, this is the single thing people are complaining about. That Valve's 30% cut is too much.
The smaller developers are usually the ones who complain about it. They typically also complain about other things and generally give the impression that they're blaming Steam for their own failures.
 

Gevin

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Nov 2, 2017
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I mean, Valve clearly wants to keep big (or successful) developers on Steam and stop them from creating their own stores, it makes a lot of sense for them to offer an incentive
 

Nappael

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Oct 25, 2017
4,883
So now Steam take a smaller cut than nearly everyone not named Itch.io, at least for successful games. Especially when you factor in their 0% cut on keys, which has always been the case.

Remember, if you want to support indies better, buy on Itch.io. Itch use a variable system, where a 10% cut is the default, but developers can set whatever they want from 0-100%.
 

Krejlooc

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Oct 27, 2017
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Does this part make things like steam spy irrelevant?
steamspy would still be useful for getting sales estimates for those who don't share their sales figures, but at the same time this could allow developers to directly publish their sales figures to steam spy, which was a TOS violation prior.
 

galv

Avenger
Oct 25, 2017
1,662
I hope no one here uses those takeaway places like just eat or deliveroo if they hate the 30% cut so much
or the iOS store
or the Google Play store
or Uber
or Lyft
or PSN Store
or Microsoft Store
or Nintendo eShop
or music from Record Companies
or Spotify
or Netflix
or Hulu
or ISPs
or YouTube
...
the list goes on and on

but fuck valve, greedy bastards, everyone else is cool tho (except for google play store, good that fortnite released outside so they don't give evil google any money!")
 

Madjoki

Member
Oct 25, 2017
3,080
I don't know where people get idea Ubisoft has been planning to leave Steam. Quite contrary though, Ubi has been adding more Steam features to their games recently. And I have no doubt Ubi already had special agreement with Valve.
 

Vagabond

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Oct 26, 2017
1,004
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Hey, although this doesn't directly affect me I do not want to see even MORE storefronts pop up from individual publishers with launchers and different in-game agents and services running on my PC at all times. Maybe this can stem the surge we've seen, because I'm already up to 8 storefronts not including the Windows store and only three of them offer anything worthy IMO (Steam, Blizzard, Bethesda).

When Game Pass comes to PC I hope it would at least encourage some of those storefronts to offer a subscription option.