Valve made significant changes to its Steam Distribution Agreement on Friday, taking to the official Steam Community blog to line out all the alterations. Among them is the introduction of a new revenue split for its online marketplace.
The revenue split changes the agreement by giving developers more money depending on the number of unit sales they make. Valve typically has taken about 30 percent of all Steam sales through the platform, with a few exceptions from other utilizing the Steam Direct platform. Now, for game sales between $10 million and $50 million, developers will earn revenue split at 25 percent. For every sale after $50 million, Steam will only take 20 percent from the game’s overall earnings.
These changes will begin with revenue earned after Oct. 1, 2018 and will include DLC, in-game sales, and Community Marketplace game fees. Steam hopes that this change will “reward the positive network effects generated by the developer of big games.”
“It’s always been apparent that successful games and their large audiences have a material impact on those network effects so making sure Steam recognizes and continues to be an attractive platform for those games is an important goal for all participants in the network,” read the official statement.
This is one of the biggest changes the platform has made in its entire 15-year operation, and it looks to be offering boons for developers who decide to stay on board or go different routes, specifically with the various online game sales platforms that continue to crop up.
Valve also made changes to the agreement in terms of sales data confidentiality, which is being updated to make it clear that partners can share their own game data sales as they choose to. Additional alterations lined out in the blog include safety warranties “prompted by VR,” as well as language that addresses how data is approached under the 2018 GDPR rulings.
The blog went on to mention that the team at Steam is working on new developer tools, improved navigation data, and additional metrics on games that run on Steam, as well as improvements on server and bandwidth infrastructure and payment methods, with “more to come” in the future.