Valve has new tools in the works which will provide “more accurate and more useful data” than Steam Spy, the company revealed in a Q&A session at a games industry conference in St. Petersburg, Russia.
At the White Nights 18 event, Valve’s Jan-Peter Ewert held a Q&A session, parts of which were tweeted from Oleg Chumakov’s Twitter account.
At one point in the panel, the question of what Valve should be working on was raised. Game developer Michael Kuzmin asked how many in the audience use the Steam Spy tool, demonstrating that many developers use the tool to better understand the marketplace, before asking Ewert if they have any plans to provide game developers with similar tools to help them determine key information about Steam, such as what kind of games are in demand.
Ewert acquiesced that Valve is not offering the “amount of tools that we should” but noted that the community generally steps in to provide needed tools via Steam’s public application programming interfaces (APIs). This is where tools like Steam Spy come in, to fill the void that official means have left untouched.
Ewert noted that Steam Spy has a “broad variance” in how accurate the information is for various titles, and explained that developers need a more reliable predictor of game sales performance.
“The only that way we can make money is if [game developers] make good decisions in bringing the right games to the platform and finding your audience,” Ewert said. “So, yes, we are very much working on new tools and new ways of getting data out of Steam, and we hope that data can be more accurate and more useful than what Steam Spy previously offered you.”
Steam Spy is developed by Sergey Galyonkin, who notes on the About page that the tool is “designed to be helpful for indie developers, journalists, students, and all parties interested in PC gaming and its current state of affairs.” Steam Spy is currently funded by Patreon.