Valve’s publishing fee for Steam Direct is $100 per game

It could have been significantly higher

Recommended Videos

Valve is moving away from Steam Greenlight as a public-facing tool for determining which games should be sold on Steam, and in its place, developers are getting Steam Direct.

Under this new initiative, instead of spending time garnering community support as a way onto Steam, devs will apply through Valve and pay a $100 publishing fee per game that’s recoupable “after a game hits $1,000 in sales,” per Ars Technica. (Greenlight has a $100 fee, but it’s a one-time thing.)

We previously noted that the company was thinking of charging developers anywhere from $100 all the way up to $5,000 (!), per title, for its Steam Direct fee. Today, Valve says it was internally “hovering around the $500 mark, but the community conversation really challenged us to justify why the fee wasn’t as low as possible, and to think about what we could do to make a low fee work.”

“In the past, the challenge was to figure out what products should be on the Store,” Valve said in a lengthy post. “Now, we think the challenge is to figure out what products a specific player wants to see.”

With this fee-based approach to self-publishing and the fear of an even larger throwaway-game flood, Valve assures that it will “closely monitor the kinds of game submissions we’re receiving, so that we’re ready to implement more features like the the Trading Card changes we covered in the last blog post, which aim to reduce the financial incentives for bad actors to game the store algorithm.”

It’s still unclear when Steam Direct will roll out, but last we heard, the targeted launch window was this spring. Summarizing its plans, Valve said “We believe that if we inject human thinking into the Store algorithm, while at the same time increasing the transparency of its output, we’ll have created a public process that will incrementally drive the Store to better serve everyone using it.”

Steam Direct Fee & Upcoming Store Updates [Steam]

About The Author
Jordan Devore
Jordan is a founding member of Destructoid and poster of seemingly random pictures. They are anything but random.
More Stories by Jordan Devore