Valve’s Steam Greenlight has recently come under attack by frustrated indie developers who feel that the approval system needs an overhauling.
The major idea behind the system was to have players vote up the games and leave external forces out of the system. However, as things stand that is not quite working as it should; with notoriously bad games coming under the spotlight, leaving the good ones uncared for in the dark.
In an open letter written to Valve, developer Poe spoke of how the Greenlight process could be made better by allowing publishers to help developers and bringing back members of the indie community to help curate submissions.
Poe found writing a letter necessary after coming across a Reddit thread promoting Infestation: Survivor Stories, which was under Steam’s Daily Deal at that time. The problem here is that Infestation: Survivor Stories was previously known as War Z, a supposed rip off of the popular Arma II mod, Day Z. The game was even taken down from Steam following complains by buyers that it was falsely advertising features that were not found in the game.
“Unfortunately, since this whole thing is so experimental, the rules keep changing. Some games get through with publishers; some are hung out to dry. Some don’t even need Greenlight; some do. Some get Greenlit when they crack the top 100; some sit in the number 1 or 2 spot for weeks or months.”
Tom Bui from Valve responded to the letter by admitting that Greenlight was indeed “not perfect by any stretch of the imagination” and claimed that there wasn’t any way to ship as many games as the company would like.
As things stand many good games are finding it hard to climb up the ladders to come out on top and eventually go unnoticed. Steam should bring in some necessary changes, else see Greenlight repel potential developers in the future.