Steam Was Killing PC Gaming, Epic Games Store Is Saving It – Former Valve Employee

Former Valve employee speaks out against Valve’s 30% revenue share.

Posted By | On 08th, Apr. 2019

Epic Games Store

The Epic Games Store has become so controversial over the last few months. It has become the first legitimate contender to Steam’s utter dominance over the PC gaming market, in large part buoyed by Epic paying for multiple timed exclusives. However, while developers have come out and declared their support for the Epic Games Store previously, PC players themselves are less kind about it, viewing Epic’s style of competition as antithetical to the PC gaming experience entirely.

However, now, no less than a former Valve employee himself has come forward in support of Epic’s initiative, stating that Steam’s stranglehold over the PC gaming market was slowly killing it, while Epic Games Store is revitalizing it.

“Steam was killing PC gaming,” ex-Valve employee Richard Geldreich said on Twitter. “It was a 30% tax on an entire industry. It was unsustainable. You have no idea how profitable Steam was for Valve. It was a virtual printing press. It distorted the entire company. Epic is fixing this for all gamers.”

He went on to note that without Epic, the whole gaming industry would be “crunching to support” Valve’s 30% revenue share.

I am not sure I entirely agree with this take. There are many factors here—for starters, Steam is hardly the only major platform that charges a 30% revenue share rate. Off the top of my head, Apple, Google, Amazon, Nintendo, PlayStation, and Xbox all charge it too. The modern gaming industry is, in fact, built on the back of the 30% revenue share model that Nintendo pioneered all the way back in the 1980s—and it’s continued to thrive just fine.

I do welcome competition in the PC gaming space, mind you, and Epic Games Store is as good at that as anything—but I don’t think Valve is toxic to PC gaming, and I don’t think Epic’s tactics are the best either.


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