Last week, Valve announced that Steam Greenlight would be replaced with Steam Direct, a new service for developers and publishers to bring their games directly to the Steam Store. At the time, Valve offered a potential Steam Direct submission fee anywhere from $100 to $5,000. The higher end of that range has caused developers to balk at the move, as many indies can't afford to spend so much to submit their games to Steam.
Indie publisher Raw Fury has offered to establish a fund to help a curated list of developers publish on Steam Direct, if the fee ends up being rather expensive.
"We chatted amongst ourselves and came to an immediate understanding that there had to be something we could do to contribute to the indie community, so we've decided to try to financially support some developers that are doing amazing things but might struggle with Steam Direct if the fee ends up being on the expensive side like $1000 or above by paying the fee for them," said Raw Fury in a post explaining the potential fund.
Developers would retain ownership of this games, but Raw Fury would ask for the amount to be paid back if the game was successful. Why? Because then that money can be used for further entrants into the program. Raw Fury is going to curate the initial list of developers before moving forward.
"Although we agree that there are valid reasons to try to curate and raise the quality bar within Steam (and other platforms), there's a danger that quality games made by talented developers will not make it onto Steam given that the fee in question could end up being anywhere between $100 and $5000," said the company. "The closer we get to the higher end of that spectrum the bigger the danger becomes of players losing out on some real gems that would never come to surface."
"In many ways, this cuts to one of the core reasons why Raw Fury even became a thing. Most of us have been The Little Guy, most of us know the struggle that comes with it," Raw Fury closed. "We'll announce details when we have a clearer picture of what the fee is and how Steam Direct will ultimately function."
It's a good gesture, even if Valve hasn't completely locked down the details yet. Good on Raw Fury Games for thinking ahead.
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