• Retail threatens Steam ban

    ‘We will refuse to sell Steam games’ blast High Street giants; Digital distributors losing customers to giant rival.

    The world's biggest digital distribution platform for games is under attack.
    MCV understands that key retailers will drop titles that integrate the popular Steam service as fears mount that the service has a ‘monopoly’ on the download market.
    Insiders say Steam, run by US studio Valve, serves a massive 80 per cent of the PC download sector. And retailers preparing their own rival platforms don’t want that share to grow any more.
    Some of the biggest PC games – such as Call of Duty and Fallout – use Steam. But retailers are concerned that selling games with the tech built-in pushes users towards only buying games via Valve going forward.
    At least two major retailers will demand that publishers remove Steam from their games – or they will not sell them in any form.
    “If we have a digital service, then I don’t want to start selling a rival in-store,” said the digital boss at one of the biggest UK games retailers.
    “Publishers are creating a monster *– we are telling suppliers to stop using Steam in their games.”
    The head of sales at a big-name digital service provider agreed: “At the moment the big digital distributors need to stock games with Steam. But the power resides with bricks and mortar retailers, they can refuse to stock these titles. Publishers are hesitant, but retail must put pressure on them.”
    Gaikai CEO David Perry told MCV Steam could become the games-equivilent of iTunes, where it dictates the terms of the market, not the other way around: “Steam has made it so easy for everyone and they have lots of users. But how long do you wait before you take control of your own digital strategy? Like with iTunes, at some point it’s going to be too late.”
    Source: MCV UK
    Comments 7 Comments
    1. mr. nails's Avatar
      mr. nails -
      hell, even new games are kinda hard to find sometimes @ retail. also, for ppl like me if it's NOT on steam i won't even play it. i'm sure there's more than one like that so it's in the publishers better interest to go ahead and allow steam. thx.
    1. duke0102's Avatar
      duke0102 -
      So, to get back at a massive seller of games the less successful (it would seem) sellers would not sell STEAM games. With so many new top titles using STEAM I don't see what they plan to sell lol
    1. hotshot6473's Avatar
      hotshot6473 -
      The people threatening not to use Steam are the top titles...
    1. vjrai's Avatar
      vjrai -
      STEAM FTW! Games are easy to download, they have included the latest updates, patch, fixes, etc.
      No more scratched dvd`s or space occupied by dozens of them.
    1. bobbintb's Avatar
      bobbintb -
      Quote Originally Posted by hotshot6473 View Post
      The people threatening not to use Steam are the top titles...

      no. its the stores.

      i have mixed feelings about steam. i think its a great tool for distribution and updating. makes many things a whole lot easier including not needing the actual disc. my one real issue is that its harder to make a decent crack and update for some of the games not worth buying.
    1. duke0102's Avatar
      duke0102 -
      Quote Originally Posted by bobbintb View Post
      my one real issue is that its harder to make a decent crack and update for some of the games not worth buying.
      I think that's the reason why a lot of game makers like STEAM due to its security.
    1. phayze101's Avatar
      phayze101 -
      Had to comment on this. The irony is valve, along with Blizzard has made only the highest quality games for the PC platform, and other developers/publishers (wahtever) want a piece too, and are too ignorant to believe that it was their poor decision making when it comes to game quality in the past. This is why games like Half-Life/CSS and Starcraft/Warcraft do so well. This is why these companies are raking in the cash. They have developed a very large following because of the quality of the content they provide. They are constantly INNOVATING the PC platform, unlike other studios who choose to keep PC on an equal footing as the console, despite the technology nearing multiple generations ahead. The fact is, people are not going to use EA's download service or Microsoft games network, they simple host too many terrible games on their platform, have a horrendous reputation, and their poor sportsmanship is clearly being shown by the stance they are taking against valve. Sorry, but i'm sticking with Valve, they have served me good, and all 160 of my games are at my fingertips with excellent download speeds, unlimited copies, protected CD keys, friends networks that people use, and a company that cares. God I dont know when the EA customer service actually got anything done, and god knows how long it took microsoft to cancel my Live subscription over the phone (Site wouldn't let me). I could probably get a refund for a game I bought a month ago from steam.

      Fact is digital distribution is over 50% of the PC games sold (And god knows how many of those are relics that You cant get online). Time to start cutting game prices retailers, and valve, I aint going to be paying for the box for long.