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Showing posts with label Valve. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Valve. Show all posts

May 17, 2017

Polygon: Valve is not your friend, and Steam is not healthy for gaming

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  3. Polygon: Valve is not your friend, and Steam is not healthy for gaming
Darmik 1 day ago#1
https://www.polygon.com/2017/5/16/15622366/valve-gabe-newell-sales-origin-destructive

The drive to be on the bleeding edge of technology powers the PC gaming community. We want nothing more than to run our ridiculously powerful rigs on barely stable beta drivers, with our CPUs overclocked to speeds that are neither advisable nor guaranteed to be safe for our systems.

It’s a good match for the ship-first-iterate-later approach of major Silicon Valley companies who want to expand at all costs and don’t care what it takes. 

But companies like Uber, Lyft, Airbnb, Fiverr and the others are starting to feel the risk of that edge. The world is finally realizing that a hands-off, profit-first, tax-dodging “connection and services platform,” powered by the cheap labor of people who aren't technically employees and have no rights isn't exactly a good idea. In fact, it may be a very bad one. Whether this means government regulators finally getting their act together, unions winning court cases or citizens voting them out of town, these companies are starting to feel the downside of moving fast and breaking things. 

If you were to ask the average PC gamer, they’d swear up and down that there’s no way they’d ever give their money to such a corporation. They’d not only be caught dead before helping a company like that come to power, they might even join the resistance to stop them. 

And yet, that sort of operation is exactly what the PC gaming community has been supporting, promoting and defending since 2004 when Valve more or less forced us to install Steam by bundling it with Half-Life 2.


This, then, is Good Guy Valve — a corporation which employs precision-engineered psychological tools to trick people into giving them money in exchange for goods they don't legally own and may never actually use while profiting from a whole lot of unpaid labor and speculative work ... but isn't “evil.” 

This is the Good Guy everyone seems too afraid to call out, the toxic friend who is so popular that upsetting him will just make things worse for you, so you convince yourself he's really not that bad and that everyone else is over-reacting. Once the Good Guy illusion has disappeared, we're left with the uncomfortable truth: Valve is nothing more than one of the new breed of digital rentiers, an unapologetic platform monopolist growing rich on its 30 percent cut of every purchase — and all the while abrogating every shred of corporate or moral responsibility under the Uber-esque pretense of simply being a "platform that connects gamers to creators.” 

A company which will spend what has to be millions on legal fees to avoid having to pay you $15 in refunds, but which isn't “evil.” A company which exploits, underpays, deceives, obfuscates and refuses to cooperate at nearly every turn, but would never be caught dead doing “evil.”

The imaginary Gabe, the one in our memes, is a cultural defense mechanism, a happy fiction we all invented to make us feel better about the fact that we were, and remain, willing partners in installing PC gaming's biggest, most opaque, exploitative monopoly — one which we know deep down doesn't care about us at all. 

Maybe it's time for all of us to wake up.


It's a surprisingly good article from Polygon. It goes into the dodgy stuff Valve has done over the years (being forced into providing refunds, taking advantage of community creations as free labour) but I disagree that they're overall bad for gaming. A lot of their initiatives are quite good for the consumer.
Kind Regards,
Darmik
chill02 1 day ago#2
meh, gaming journalism
Ave, true to Caesar.
chill02 posted...
meh, gaming journalism


CHILL THE f*** OUT

god dammit why
Kaiganeer 1 day ago#4
valve made dota
Offworlder1 1 day ago#5
Valve has been irrelevant for over a decade now.
"Always two there are, a master and an apprentice"
chill02 1 day ago#6
AlternativeFAQS posted...
chill02 posted...
meh, gaming journalism


CHILL THE f*** OUT

god dammit why


relax

also, I don't treat any company like a friend or think they're doing anything beyond trying to make money, they're not running a charity
Ave, true to Caesar.
ManSpread 1 day ago#7
Lol who plays video games made after 1992
Darmik 1 day ago#9
chill02 posted...
also, I don't treat any company like a friend or think they're doing anything beyond trying to make money, they're not running a charity


Some people do treat Valve and Steam sorta differently. Especially with all of those Gaben memes lol.

They overall probably cop the least amount of criticism. Hell the biggest thing people whine about them is that they aren't making Half-Life 3.
Kind Regards,
Darmik
E32005 1 day ago#10
this seems to be focused towards its harm to developers and publishers, not the gamer.
Cookie Bag 1 day ago#11
chill02 posted...
meh, gaming journalism
It's that they have not out out any really game for a long time now, last valve game I bought was Left4Dead 2.
"Always two there are, a master and an apprentice"
I don't care until Steam starts revoking my game licenses, which will coincidentally fall right around the time I start cutting b****es (gender neutral)
XBL/Steam/R*/Uplay: Barinade88 | Origin: Barinade | BattleNet: Barinade#11210
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(edited 1 day ago)reportquote
I agree with you. There has been some dodgy stuff, but overall Steam has opened the door for a lot of innovative and creative game makers. Considering that they themselves are game makers and that they just as easily could have tried to muscle out the competition in favor of their games (coughEAOrigincough), it's actually quite surprising.

They revolutionized digital distribution and that has basically meant a renaissance for game makers who can't afford the costs associated with physical production.
Cookie Bag 1 day ago#15
E32005 posted...
this seems to be focused towards its harm to developers and publishers, not the gamer.

Also this, and it's not really a secret either, many indie devs have shown their discomfort at valve's way of managing things, and how much of a cut they take of their product, or how sales outright ruin their chances of actually making money out of it.

Then again

chill02 posted...
they're not running a charity
chill02 1 day ago#16
I mean, for all the s*** EA gets (some deserved, some less so), Origin does some things better than Steam at this point. Their refund policy is more generous (depending on the game, you could very well beat it with 24 hours and get a refund), their customer support works faster (mind you, they also have less users), and they give away free games from time to time (some old enough that most won't care, but sometimes you get stuff like Mass Effect 2).

But yeah, Valve has some weird cult of apologists and it's not like I can even chalk it up to investors since they're not publicly traded
Ave, true to Caesar.
P4wn4g3 1 day ago#17
Valve is definitely bad for gaming, but gamers don't seem to give a s*** so why worry about it? Pretty sure the reason PC gaming is so dry compared to 10-20 years ago is due to a handful of companies owning everything of value in PC gaming. And yet people still happily get their WoW subscriptions and beg for half-life 3.
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Darmik 1 day ago#18
E32005 posted...
this seems to be focused towards its harm to developers and publishers, not the gamer.


Eh the huge section on how much they had to have their arm twisted to let you have a refund (which tends to be Steam credit anyway) says a different story. Hell even today the Steam store displays worldwide in US dollars for me. I believe they're only fixing this in the next month or so.

For the most part they're pretty good yeah. A workshop creator guy put it best. Their technical department stuff is great. But as soon as money gets involved they're not exactly the most reliable.
Kind Regards,
Darmik
Is this a 'waaah why do I have to install steam' post just in article form?
I could see you, but I couldn't hear you You were holding your hat in the breeze Turning away from me In this moment you were stolen...
Darmik 1 day ago#20
thronedfire2 posted...
Is this a 'waaah why do I have to install steam' post just in article form?


No.
Kind Regards,
Darmik
That writer has diarrhea of the mouth in the first quoted section. Literally all over the place, no coherence at all, spewing nothing but ignorance.
- The Admiral
Delirious_Beard  attack on sight1 day ago#22
The Admiral posted...
That writer has diarrhea of the mouth in the first quoted section. Literally all over the place, no coherence at all, spewing nothing but ignorance.


well it is polygon
http://i.imgur.com/5UL2v5u.gif
"Does our ruin benefit the earth? Does it help the grass to grow, the sun to shine? Is this darkness in you, too?"
P4wn4g3 1 day ago#23
The Admiral posted...
That writer has diarrhea of the mouth in the first quoted section. Literally all over the place, no coherence at all, spewing nothing but ignorance.

I don't see how you're having difficulty interpreting it. It's pretty straightforward.
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P4wn4g3 posted...
The Admiral posted...
That writer has diarrhea of the mouth in the first quoted section. Literally all over the place, no coherence at all, spewing nothing but ignorance.

I don't see how you're having difficulty interpreting it. It's pretty straightforward.


It's straightforward in terms of being simply written. Not in terms of making a point that is remotely intelligent or close to reality. It's utter nonsense.
- The Admiral
Frolex 1 day ago#25
The gaming community has been more willing to call out Valve in the last few years.
Valve is definitely not the company they once were, IMO
Who fears to walk upon the grass? But it is the grass that hides the viper from his enemies and shelters him until he strikes.
Darmik 1 day ago#27
The begging is a bit overly dramatic (I don't have an issue with those services but maybe I missed something in the news) but the points raised throughout the article are overall pretty valid.

Frolex posted...
The gaming community has been more willing to call out Valve in the last few years.


Have they? At most I can think of paid mods but even that was often deflected to Bethesda.
Kind Regards,
Darmik
kirbymuncher  ignores me1 day ago#28
first paragraph quoted there is definitely a bit ??? in terms of the point it's trying to make but the second one is good and honestly I agree somewhat
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P4wn4g3 1 day ago#29
DarthAragorn posted...
Valve is definitely not the company they once were, IMO

They have always been the company they once were. They broke into the industry ripping off other people's s*** and got away with it.

The Admiral posted...
P4wn4g3 posted...
The Admiral posted...
That writer has diarrhea of the mouth in the first quoted section. Literally all over the place, no coherence at all, spewing nothing but ignorance.

I don't see how you're having difficulty interpreting it. It's pretty straightforward.


It's straightforward in terms of being simply written. Not in terms of making a point that is remotely intelligent or close to reality. It's utter nonsense.

Are you disagreeing with the article or just the way they wrote it?
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(edited 1 day ago)reportquote
Damn, did Gaben steal that dudes wife?
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chill02 1 day ago#31
P4wn4g3 posted...
They have always been the company they once were. They broke into the industry ripping off other people's s*** and got away with it.


who did they rip Half Life from?
Ave, true to Caesar.
Frolex 1 day ago#32
Darmik posted...
Have they? At most I can think of paid mods but even that was often deflected to Bethesda.


I mean, just recently valve caved pretty hard to pressure over their absolute s*** handling of greenlight
P4wn4g3 1 day ago#33
chill02 posted...
P4wn4g3 posted...
They have always been the company they once were. They broke into the industry ripping off other people's s*** and got away with it.


who did they rip Half Life from?

ID software, they won in court over a case of copyright infringements from what I remember. Half Life uses the Quake engine, which is likely why there isn't nor will there be a Half Life 3.
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iron jojo 1 day ago#34
The occasional no-refund horror story was dismissed as the exception, not the rule. It didn’t cause near enough to damage the Good Guy Valve golden brand, and an incredible 11 years passed before enough people were possessed of enough indignant fury to actually complain to the authorities.

Players began noting that was Valve was doing was wildly illegal, pointing out quite accurately that under European Union law, consumers were entitled to a refund on all purchases — even for something as simple as changing their mind.
vickfan-chucky they hated Jesus homie
chuckyhacks-who teh hell is "jesus homie"
P4wn4g3 posted...
chill02 posted...
P4wn4g3 posted...
They have always been the company they once were. They broke into the industry ripping off other people's s*** and got away with it.


who did they rip Half Life from?

ID software, they won in court over a case of copyright infringements from what I remember. Half Life uses the Quake engine, which is likely why there isn't nor will there be a Half Life 3.

LOL no

The only reason they haven't made Half Life 3 is they can't reskin Half-Life 2 and add skins
Who fears to walk upon the grass? But it is the grass that hides the viper from his enemies and shelters him until he strikes.
Offworlder1 posted...
Valve has been irrelevant for over a decade now.

What alternate universe did you arrive here from?
chill02 1 day ago#37
P4wn4g3 posted...
chill02 posted...
P4wn4g3 posted...
They have always been the company they once were. They broke into the industry ripping off other people's s*** and got away with it.


who did they rip Half Life from?

ID software, they won in court over a case of copyright infringements from what I remember. Half Life uses the Quake engine, which is likely why there isn't nor will there be a Half Life 3.


then how come there's still new games coming out using the Source engine (e.g. Titanfall 2)? There's reasons why Half Life 3 won't come out, but they're not related to that.

also, I'm not finding any info on this court case, just info about how Valve licensed the Quake2 engine and modified it to the point they renamed it the GoldSrc engine
Ave, true to Caesar.
(edited 1 day ago)reportquote
Darmik 1 day ago#38
iron jojo posted...
The occasional no-refund horror story was dismissed as the exception, not the rule. It didn’t cause near enough to damage the Good Guy Valve golden brand, and an incredible 11 years passed before enough people were possessed of enough indignant fury to actually complain to the authorities.

Players began noting that was Valve was doing was wildly illegal, pointing out quite accurately that under European Union law, consumers were entitled to a refund on all purchases — even for something as simple as changing their mind.


The only reason Valve implemented it at all was because of European and Australian Consumer Laws. Even now the ACCC is battling Valve in court. You never hear anyone calling them out for this though. Hell some people still defended Valve.
Kind Regards,
Darmik
P4wn4g3 1 day ago#39
chill02 posted...
also, I'm not finding any info on this court case, just info about how Valve licensed the Quake2 engine and modified it to the point they renamed it the GoldSrc engine

Yeah me either. Maybe it didn't go to court, but I used to find sources on it. Either way that's where their shady business practices began.
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Darmik 1 day ago#40
The article got it spot on why we'll never see another Half-Life

Fourteen years after Half-Life 2 — a game, by the way, that will likely never see a sequel unless it can be bundled with another leverageable platform — Good Guy Valve has smiled and exploited its way to a position of astonishing power and influence.
Kind Regards,
Darmik
chill02 1 day ago#41
P4wn4g3 posted...
chill02 posted...
also, I'm not finding any info on this court case, just info about how Valve licensed the Quake2 engine and modified it to the point they renamed it the GoldSrc engine

Yeah me either. Maybe it didn't go to court, but I used to find sources on it. Either way that's where their shady business practices began.


I mean, that's no different from when Bethesda licensed Gamebryo and rewrote it to the point where they now call it the Creation engine
Ave, true to Caesar.
I take it there aren't any reflective surfaces over at the offices of Polygon.
SGT_Conti 1 day ago#43
In recent years, the impression I got was that people have become increasingly disillusioned with Valve and Steam. In terms of reputation, they're definitely not on the same level they were in, say, 2010 or so.
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Darmik 1 day ago#44
Zack_Attackv1 posted...
I take it there aren't any reflective surfaces over at the offices of Polygon.


Tim Colwill is a trade union officer by day, and the creator of satirical gaming site Point & Clickbait by night. He is, against his better judgement, on Twitter.


He doesn't actually work in Polygon. It's a freelance article.
Kind Regards,
Darmik
P4wn4g3 1 day ago#45
chill02 posted...
P4wn4g3 posted...
chill02 posted...
also, I'm not finding any info on this court case, just info about how Valve licensed the Quake2 engine and modified it to the point they renamed it the GoldSrc engine

Yeah me either. Maybe it didn't go to court, but I used to find sources on it. Either way that's where their shady business practices began.


I mean, that's no different from when Bethesda licensed Gamebryo and rewrote it to the point where they now call it the Creation engine

Idk, I can't find the details other than essentially everything they made was based off something from Quake or it's community. ID and Valve didn't get along, there is a reason ID never let Valve buy them out.

I could be imagining the initial lawsuit (or threat there of) stuff but it's hard for me to imagine I fabricated that. It's been a long time so it's not exactly surprising that wouldn't be at the surface these days.
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(edited 1 day ago)reportquote
Haven't read the article but the universal 2 hour refund(IIRC) really rubs me the wrong way. It could really screw over games that take time to pick up or are a lot different from what people are used to.

Also the extremity of sales devalues games overall like smartphone games have.
ctrl+f: toxic

yep. it's polygon alright
what a f***ing terrible article
apolloooo 1 day ago#49
Broseph_Stalin posted...
what a f***ing terrible article

it is god damn ploygon
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CowboyDan  KoS1 day ago#50
That's capitalism, I'm not sure what the issue is here.
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  1. Boards
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  3. Polygon: Valve is not your friend, and Steam is not healthy for gaming
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    3. Polygon: Valve is not your friend, and Steam is not healthy for gaming
    I don't trust Polygon, but from others on here, more unbiased, is Steam really all it's cracked up to be? Though I have put a s***load of investment to it so not like I have much wiggle room at this point.
    Currently Playing: Trails in the Sky SC
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    I've only asked for 2 refunds on steam and got both of them within a day
    I could see you, but I couldn't hear you You were holding your hat in the breeze Turning away from me In this moment you were stolen...
    Darmik 1 day ago#53
    thronedfire2 posted...
    I've only asked for 2 refunds on steam and got both of them within a day


    This was a recent changed they were forced to implement thanks to lawsuits.
    Kind Regards,
    Darmik
    Spooking 1 day ago#54
    Looks like a case of attacking anything that is popular and big. Nothing new.
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    Cookie Bag 19 hours ago#55
    Darmik posted...

    He doesn't actually work in Polygon. It's a freelance article.

    That makes even more sense then.
    MakoReizei 19 hours ago#56
    I'm not a Valve fanboy at all but that article is so melodramatic.
    l Dudeboy l 19 hours ago#57
    What a load of crap. Can Polygon do anything right?
    You are now breathing manually.
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    Cartwheel_Kick 19 hours ago#58
    There seems to be many points the author is trying to make.

    The main point, that Steam is not a good guy n_n happy buddy company, is true and well explained.

    Whether it's bad for gaming overall, I doubt. There are some negative points like those huge cuts they take and the open betas into unfinished games it allows, but overall I'd say it has been beneficial for reasons like allowing indies to publish easily, giving gamers a useful platform for library management and multiplayer (god steam saved me so much hassle in the latter dept)

    If it was that bad as a whole it'd be replaced by something better or abandoned. Won't happen until for some reason cuts people's access to the games they "don't actually own". Don't see a reason for that as it is.
    SGT_Conti 19 hours ago#59
    How do Valve's cuts of game sales compare to other digital platforms? And I assume it was first chosen because of how it would still be preferable to manufacturing costs for physical games.
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