Over 200 Games Removed From Steam From Recent Valve Purge (VIDEO)
Valve removed a staggering near 200 games and shut down several developer storefronts all associated with Silicon Echo Studios. The company in question may not be one that is readily recognizable, and that is in large due to their “asset flipping”. Essentially, the developer takes Unity assets and with minimal effort pushes them through Steam Direct as the first step in a card farming scheme meant to make money on the gray market.
Silicon Echo Studios was able to usher through multiple games under one application, making it easier to forgo the $100 fee meant to keep developers from doing just this. The company itself managed to account for 10 percent of games released on Steam for the months of July and August. In those two months, the company churned out 86 games that slipped through the cracks of Steams most recent changes to the store. A scathing video, seen below, by YouTuber SidAlpha details just how they did it, exposing the problematic nature of Steams current policies.
This removal marks the largest number of games removed in 2017 thus far. The entire Silicon Echo Studios library is gone, however those who still own the games can play them. On the other hand, they cannot receive cards from those games any longer. This renders the games useless for their intended purpose. In a response to an inquiry from Polygon, Valve confirmed that they had removed the games published under Silicon Echo Studios (among other associated accounts) that can be read below:
Yes, we have a full-time team monitoring reports and they identified an issue that lead to the removal of some titles from a few different Steamworks accounts. These accounts were generating a lot of reports and frustration from customers and other developers. It turns out that the bad actors were all the same person operating under different accounts.
What we found was a set of extreme actions by this person that was negatively impacting the functionality of the store and our tools. For example, this person was mass-shipping nearly-identical products on Steam that were impacting the store’s functionality and making it harder for players interested in finding fun games to play. This developer was also abusing Steam keys and misrepresenting themselves on the Steam store.
As a result, we have removed those games from the Steam Store and ended our business relationship with them.
The Steam platform is open, but we do ask developers to respect our customers and our policies. Spamming cloned games or manipulating our store tools isn’t something we will tolerate. Our priority is helping players find games they will enjoy playing.
Overall, the problem persists for Valve as they try to balance making it possible for start-up indie developers to get exposure while preventing asset flippers from burring those games in trashy releases. It is apparent that their current policies are not enough to stay the wave of people taking advantage of the situation. This recent crackdown sends a stronger message, but whether or not things will change remains to be seen.
Can Valve shore up the problems with their system in regards to indie games? Join in on the conversation in the comment section below! Don’t forget to follow DFTG on Twitter for live gaming and entertainment news 24/7!
Charles Douglas734 Posts
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