Steam Paid Mods
  • Steam unleashed a bit of a bombshell on the PC gaming community today with the new implementation of allowing mod makers to charge for their mods, starting with Skyrim. Mod creators can now earn 25% of what they sell their mods for! This is pretty cool, as that is less than what game companies make when they sell a game, and for Skyrim, Steam and Bethesda get to split up the remaining 75% among themselves, which is also cool, because for hosting the content, Steam will make more money than real life retailers get for actually holding physical copies of games, and Bethesda will get money for doing absolutely nothing. So it's a win-win all around! Unless, of course, you wanted to either A) Make a fair amount for your mods, or B) don't have the disposable income to spend on paid mods.

    Discuss any thoughts, critiques, and such here!

    Noobied by 1FirLocke
  • This sounds like it could go very, very badly. Does Valve have any control over how mods can be priced and if the mods are even good enough to be worth pricing (as in, the mods work?) ? Then again, it encourages coders to go and make mods too. I remember that one guy who made a massive mod for an Elder Scrolls (it was either Oblivion or Skyrim) and ended up getting hired by Bethesda themselves.
  • So far, pricing and quality are entirely left to the modmakers design.

    Some of the... rule-wrangling is definitely going to have to shake itself out. Compilation mods are suddenly in a weird place. You get a 24 hour "refund" period, but what happens if a mod stops working just a few weeks in, or breaks when another is introduced? Valve has on their FAQ that you should simply let the mod creator know, but that's little recompense to purchasers if the product goes wonky in a short time. Ideally this would be sorted out by "the market" but the reality is we may be left with a weird clusterfuck of cash-grab mods all over the place, which I don't think is the aesthetic Steam is going for, considering one of the biggest complaints they receive is how much of a clusterfuck the store is at times in terms of a bajillion new releases always hitting.
    Noobied by 18drawt
  • @Firlocke Yeah I remember seeing an interview with Todd Howard in which he says he got in touch with a guy who built a mod (for I think Oblivion) and offered him a job.

    But giving the mod developers free control over pricing and pair that with lack of quality control, that sounds like a recipe for misuse. I suspect that the system will go through multiple iterations or be scrapped completely .before steam get it right. 

    The only benefit could be that it could encourage more talented people to develop mods if they know that there is going to be an income from it.
  • @Winsord has informed me that people are taking mods off of Nexus that aren't theirs and are selling them on Steam. Did anyone at Steam think this through?
  • First they open the floodgates to allow most any game to be sold on Steam and now they allow any ol' Joe Schmo to make a mod (or take one it sounds like) and sell it. PC 'elitism' in full effect here! :P Joking aside, they're really letting themselves go when it comes to QA. I mean, they already were, but now they are with reckless abandon.
  • Yep, get ready for a deluge of shitty cash-grab mods and misleading trailers. Jim Fucking Sterling Son will have to start a new series. Another step to monetize everything and replace something crafted from fiery fanboy passion with a cold incorporated pursuit of dollars. Modders who have the chops should just go to crowd funding sites if they really want to make a mod people want plus get paid for it, and not have to share a cent with anyone. 25%? If I were a modder I'd tell them to shove that deal up their arseholes, next to Nintendo's YouTube scheme.

    This is a shit idea, and will end badly.
    Noobied by 18drawt
  • Thank God for Jim.
  • And just like that, paid mods are being taken off the Workshop for the time being. It sounds like they could come back at a later point, but Bethesda and Valve have agreed to do away with them for the time being.

    "We're going to remove the payment feature from the Skyrim workshop. For anyone who spent money on a mod, we'll be refunding you the complete amount. We talked to the team at Bethesda and they agree. 

    We've done this because it's clear we didn't understand exactly what we were doing. We've been shipping many features over the years aimed at allowing community creators to receive a share of the rewards, and in the past, they've been received well. It's obvious now that this case is different. 

    To help you understand why we thought this was a good idea, our main goals were to allow mod makers the opportunity to work on their mods full time if they wanted to, and to encourage developers to provide better support to their mod communities. We thought this would result in better mods for everyone, both free & paid. We wanted more great mods becoming great products, like Dota, Counter-strike, DayZ, and Killing Floor, and we wanted that to happen organically for any mod maker who wanted to take a shot at it. 

    But we underestimated the differences between our previously successful revenue sharing models, and the addition of paid mods to Skyrim's workshop. We understand our own game's communities pretty well, but stepping into an established, years old modding community in Skyrim was probably not the right place to start iterating. We think this made us miss the mark pretty badly, even though we believe there's a useful feature somewhere here. 

    Now that you've backed a dump truck of feedback onto our inboxes, we'll be chewing through that, but if you have any further thoughts let us know.

  • Steam has cancelled this. The implementation was a mess. So many mods borrow from others, and no guidance on what to do in such situation was given. There were no "proof of ownership" systems implemented. Really... Amateur job by Steam.
  • I am glad they decided to reconsider due to all the backlash and upset Steam consumers about the paid mods thing.

    However, if Nightmare House 2 was a mod that cost money, I'd put down $20 for it, but you know what? Itwas free.
  • I'm only 6 minutes in, but this is sounding like a very interesting video.

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