Microtransaction Bullcrap by Trevor-Fox

Holy crap, Valve. Really? You took your awesome Steam Workshop and started charging money for the mods that people put up? These are supposed to be free for the players! What happened to ethics and caring about the player base? Do you even realize how BADLY this could affect the gaming community as a whole?! We're already being thrown down the toilet with how badly companies treat the masses with microtransactions, unpatched messes of games, and cosmetic/over-charged DLC. Now you have to add fuel to the fire? Are you trying to burn the remnants of what makes gaming awesome and take us into an age of shallow, money consumed, soulless gameplay that much faster?

So, today, Valve made it possible so that modders could get money for their mods that they create for games. They have only ruined Skyrim with this so far. But they set up a system where the modders could charge what they feel their mod is worth. This is a HORRIBLE idea.
This entire premise behind mods is that they're created by the people for the people. They are created by gamers who love the game and want to add something to it. And it's created for other gamers to enjoy their work. These mods also look GREAT in a portfolio for these people which will help them get into companies to work for where they will get PAID then. If a modder really needs money, then they can set up a donation fund, or open a Patreon. I'm sure others who love their work would LOVE to support them. But this bullcrap should have never happened.

The implications of this are absolutely terrible. Once companies realize that they don't even have to spend man-hours and work on their own DLC, and can get the community to do it for them FOR FREE, then we're going to have an increase in microtransactions and companies being even MORE greedy than they already are. Other games are unplayable at launch and have to be patched. The community sometimes does this for the developers for free because they love the game. What if we start getting charged for patches because the developers were too lazy to finish their game properly? Why do WE get screwed?

This is not a good sign, and I hope Valve eats crap on this for a while. There will always be those out there who support and buy this nonsense, but I sure as heck hope that for once, the sensible part of the crowd outnumbers them, because this is just dragging gaming even farther into the cesspit that it's found itself in.

Microtransaction Bullcrap


23 April 2015 at 15:55:17 MDT

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  • Link

    You charge for your artwork, correct? What makes their hard work at creating mods any different than yours at creating art?

    I've seen that plenty of modders still wish to make it accessible to all, but for some of the more challenging and detailed mods, I can certainly understand wanting to recoop some of the time and hard work they've poured into it.

    • Link

      Then you are clearly not understanding my argument in the slightest.

      My problem is with the system, not with modders getting paid. The system is flawed and need to be abolished immediately, as the long-term implications behind this are absolutely atrocious. I have nothing wrong with modders getting some money for their hard work and efforts.

      I don't charge people to view my artwork. If they like what they see, then they can pay me because they're happy with what I produce and want to support me. This is not that system. This is a system that encourages piracy, fraud, deception, and makes sure that users have to pay before they can see a mod IF that modder decides to put their work up for a price.

      Other, better methods (where the modders do not get cut out of any of the money that they make) include donations, Patreon, kickstarter, etc. There are venues open that allow people to be paid. This does nothing but drive another wedge into the gaming community and turn it in on itself.

  • Link

    I'm gonna have to disagree, at least partially.

    Working for a company, I don't trust them to pay people a fair amount for the work they do. Steam has supported indie games, and while a lot of them are junk, and not worth the money paid for them, this has allowed a lot of programmers who are out of work, or not rich enough to start their own companies, to make money. Also, indie games are often unique in their gameplay, and have forced many commercial companies to rethink their cut-and-paste development models.

    I could be wrong, after all, while it can still take a good few days to do a decent 3d model, it is still a lot less time than developing a full game, and I don't know what % the big companies will end up taking from the commission, but anything that allows individuals to make money is a good thing in my eyes. (He said, being a hypocritical tightwad).

    I get your point about piracy, fraud and deception, but those are present in any art or computer game. I don't play Skyrim, but I do watch DOTA, and there is a view before you buy option to prevent deception, but by the sounds of your post, this is not the case with Skyrim. As for piracy and fraud, people selling other people's work as their own, or acquiring it without paying is always a risk. I guess it breaks down to how well Skyrim and steam control the process.

    Regardless of opinion, I think that this is something that is going to happen eventually, although not quite necessarily in the same format it is now.
    The use of the internet to pool worldwide talent to build up a game in parts will allow for a vastly superior games, if done right. It will also allow people to pay for what they want in a game, so if they don't want all the bells and whistles, they don't have to buy them (As opposed to buying a commercial game where all of the art and features are included, and the cost therefore covered in the price).

    That said, some games will still use a pay-to-win pricing model. These are generally doomed, not that that will stop people trying. But I digress, the sale of non-art content is related, but not the issue here.

    • Link

      And those are all fair points.

      Again, I'm not against modders being able to make money, however; the system that's currently in place needs to be completely removed. It's hurting absolutely everyone.

      The official Steam release of paid mods can be read here: http://www.steamcommunity.com/workshop/aboutpaidcontent

      I'm too opinionated on the matter to be able to state the opposing view fairly, but, with the way the current system is set up, Valve and Bethesda take absolutely no responsibility for a mod's inability to consistently keep their mod updated, and they offer no damage control. Everything is thrown at the modder. The people who suffer are the gamers and the modders while the companies who do nothing but host this make huge bank off of it. It's very corrupt and wrong.

      I believe their are better systems that can be thought of, and there are already ways a modder can get paid. Patreon, Donations, etc. If Steam wanted to link to a Patreon or include a Donation button, or even set something up ala Humble Bundle--those would all be MUCH better options than the system that's in place now. Right now the companies split 75 percent of the profits among themselves while the modder only gets 25 percent. And he only sees money whenever he's able to make $100 income, which means he has to sell $400 worth of his mod before he'll see a single penny.

  • Link

    Hmm.. I don't see anything off about the T's&C's, although I'm no lawyer. They do bounce a fair amount of responsibility back to the artist, but I didn't see anything unusual. That said, I'm guessing you have looked a bit deeper into the actual claim procedures.
    I guess it's it's just a bit too commercialised, but donations, well, I think most people will just take what they can. Human nature. But then I am ever the cynic.

    75% is a big cut for a company, and I don't see the admin costs, even though it is micro-transactions, adding up to that.
    If this does become more popular, like I think it will, competition will drive the price down, eventually.

    Too be fair, I'm a bit opinionated myself.