Valve responds to Steam sales criticism

Jason Holtman of Valve rejects the comments of EA's David DeMartini; insists Steam sales do not "cheapen intellectual properties."

Last month, Electronic Arts' David DeMartini criticized Valve's digital distribution platform for offering games at hugely discounted prices. EA's senior vice president for global commerce claimed this practice "cheapens intellectual property" that "game makers work very hard to make." Eurogamer reports Valve's Jason Holtman insisted at the Develop conference in Brighton this week that "discounts serve a lot of functions…when you look at the data, things come out and they make you scratch your head for a little bit, and then you're like, that kind of makes sense."

Valve plans to release Counter Strike: Global Offensive in August.

DeMartini runs EA's digital platform Origin, with its 11 million users making it the second largest after Steam's 40 million. Digital sales continue to gain popularity, up 76 percent on last year.

Valve's Holtman countered that the company wouldn't repeat [the strategy] with [its] own games if the sales structure did not serve its purpose, and that partners wouldn't want to repeat it. He said the sales are key to introducing players to new intellectual properties.

"You've probably caught somebody and introduced them to a game when they haven't had it, and they've played it, and the next time the franchise comes out…they've just become more avid gamers," he said.

"If you're a fan of a game or a property…you want it," Holtman said in response to concerns about deflating release-day sales. "It's very valuable to you because you're a fan. You want to play it then."

Steam's summer sale began yesterday, offering individual games and bundles at up to 89 percent off, and will last until July 22.

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Discussion

0 comments
Dannystaples14
Dannystaples14

Hey EA your games lose their intellectual property simply by having you name on the box.

Avenger1324
Avenger1324

EA is all about focusing on the sales in the first month - if for instance Kingdoms of Amalur didn't sell X million copies in the first month it was deemed a failure - and the studio closed down.

 

What Valve does with its sales is wait until a game has been out for several months and realises that by (temporarily) dropping the price they can find a whole new market of gamers willing to buy it, or atleast give it a go at the cheaper price.  Eventually that game hits the mega discounts Steam are so well known for, but only really once all natural demand for the game has dried up.

 

Torchlight for instance has been heavily discounted on Steam a few times, but in doing so earned a lot more fans, many of who went out and bought Torchlight 2 at release.

BlackSquare
BlackSquare

Socialists. Doesn't EA understand supply and demand? Lower the price and people will buy it.

jamesmonkey4u
jamesmonkey4u

Steam is great and offering some good deals. where as Origin is slow crashes a lot for me and most games are overpriced so no thankyou.

bryjoered2007
bryjoered2007

EA is so JEALOUS. I'll give you a perfect example EA of why this service even helps you greedy bastards out. Today I purchased "Crysis 2" on steam for 10 dollars. This game is over a year old do you really think I would, or anyone else for that matter, buy it from your Origin platform for $40? Hell no, this is attributed to the fact that I previously had a Pirated copy of the game before I had to wipe my hard drive. I hate you EA and it dissapoints me that I really enjoy some of your franchises or I would have a huge grin on my face as your whole company burned in hell!

valium88
valium88

I'm guessing at least 1/3 of those 11 million users are BF3 players such as myself who were forced to install origin for that purpose and don't use it regularly. Have anyone seen the prices on Origin? Seriously? I can order two or tree games online for the price of one game in Origin and then I'll have a hardcopy too. and all that "cheapens intellectual property crap" is just hillerious. A lot of the games are old games that people would never buy unless the price is at an acceptable level and it's digital, so it's basically pure profit. Also new digital copies should be 20$ cheaper not 5-10$ more expensive then buying it elsewhere.

zaire103
zaire103

Sorry EA, i much prefer STEAM~! STEAM ROCKS~~~~!

JTisTrue
JTisTrue

What a surprise! The Great Mammon Machine itself sends one of its peons to bitch to the media that us gamers may finally have the opportunity to actually pay for a game what it is actually worth rather than the dumb@$$, automatic 60 that EA slaps on its unworthy POS games it usually ships out. Surely the new Madden is going to buck this trend, right? I wont be holding my breath. 60 for a new roster and reportedly a little bit of new passing control. Please EA. Go bitch to someone who cares.

baal46
baal46

Please.

 

Steam is the most convenient, efficient, and permanent way to maintain a library of games. I wish ALL of my games were on Steam.

 

Some games just aren't worth 60 dollars. I would rather wait and pay a reasonable price for a mediocre game. If I want it bad enough, I will pay up on release. If not, I will wait and pay what I think its worth.

 

I haven't used a bittorrent client in ages.

Greyfox-101
Greyfox-101

Figures that when something in the corporatized world of the game industry actually benefits us, the consumers, that the other corporate heads would complain about it. We deserve game discounts now during the awful days of paid-for release date DLC, yearly releases of games without much innovation (COD, Madden, etc.), and f2p which really translates to f2p + $100 of iap to be fair for all. 

TheKeef
TheKeef

This is just some coporate windbag crying that his being outsold and undersold. Not the first time this has happend, surely won't be the last.

poopinpat
poopinpat

EA...Origins...no ty, keep it.

jayjay444
jayjay444

ive got loads of great deal's from steam i bought valve collection for 35£ (60% off) that included great games like half-life, CS, L4d, etc etc i got civ 4 and 5 (also 60% off) really really good deal i got sins of a solar empire 40$ off. Peeps i could go on about this all day the point is i get loads of great deals and IM a very happy customer how many deals dose EA offer........ i bet not even 1 lol!  LONG LIVE STEAM AND VALVE!!! :)

PacoTaco
PacoTaco

Considering EA is a company heavily invested in basically selling yearly updates to multiple franchises, I wonder why they even care that Steam offers discounts on games several months/years past release.  How many people pay 19.99 for a DvD (or Blu Ray) after a movie has been released 6 months ago? 

 

Seems like EA is just bitter that their service is second-rate.

DeltaMike90
DeltaMike90

EA: wtf u sell games cheap we make no money i hate u!

 

Valve: lol!

jellyman68
jellyman68

Lets be honest here. The only reason there are 11 million Origin accounts is because most people were forced to make one to play Battlefield 3. That is not a model for success. Sooner or later they'll realise that Origin is a failure.

tweezzzy
tweezzzy

i have 30 steam accounts. i have 0 origin accounts. I WONDER WHY.

dsmpunk
dsmpunk

Wahhh!  I have to compete with companies that don't follow the EA rules!  That's not fair  ; ;  /stomps feet

 

Give me a break EA. I have dropped hundreds of dollars on Steam and I have played many great games that I normally wouldn't have because of the daily deals and things like the summer sale.

 

It's too bad that EA is so terrible. Honestly they have some great games, but between their draconian DRM and their "squeeze every last dime out of us, but we are all pirates" attitude, yeah no thanks...

SauhlGood
SauhlGood

seriously valve would have to go out and beat some eldery citizens to death before id even consider criticism from EA about Valve...

 

Sergeant_
Sergeant_

I stopped reading when I saw " EA Criticized Valve".

nyran125
nyran125

youve just hit the nail on the head on WHY BF3 really isnt on STEAM

 

cheap prices.

bjorta
bjorta

the only reason Origin will increase sales this uear is because of MassEffect 3 was not available on Steam....

Bought it via Origin...and ...will never buy another game on that platform again...

 

Go Valve!!!!

dmarkonije
dmarkonije

I would like if someone from EA or steam could see what am i about to write.

If it wasnt for steam, i would never buy an original game. Only pirate version. Not because i dont want to, its because i dont have money. Thanks to steam (their discounts), i have many games in my library and i paid respect to developers. Its like groupon deals - if the number of sales are high, it pays it self alot. Not everyone in the world has money for games, you know mister EA big head. At the end, i could just say, - Steam, keep up the great work and thank you Valve. 

Majkic666
Majkic666

EA is just mad because Steam is Great while their makeover of EA Download (origin) sucks and come with greedy excuses with that expensive games a good because it will make the developers earn more! (even though its a lie and it will only make EA earn money and not the developer)

oflow
oflow

Thanks Valve for actually respecting gaming and gamers.  Steam is quality all the way around and this latest summer sale has renewed my interest in gaming.  I have purchased a good number of games (mostly indie) in the past few day that outshine most of the big budget EA games by leaps and bounds.

 

I'll say it again it sounds like jealousy on EA's part to me. Maybe if Origin wasnt a pile of crap they could have a sale without a huge backlog of irate customers with tech support issues lol. 

J4m3sR4n0r72
J4m3sR4n0r72

We like the fact that Valve has it's annual Steam Summer Sale. Why don't you be a bunch of good boys and girls at EA and just allow us to digitaly purchase all your games on Steam? I can't promise you that you'll be forgiven, but you just might get more customers.

ZWarrior006
ZWarrior006

complaining about the sales?  well of course EA would.  They love money, and these sales are not making them as much money in ripping us off!!!!  

SnuffDaddyNZ
SnuffDaddyNZ

Please allow me to translate: "Last month, Electronic Arts' David DeMartini criticized Valve's digital distribution platform for offering games at hugely discounted prices. EA's senior vice president for global commerce claimed this practice "cheapens intellectual property" that "game makers work very hard to make."

 

Translation:

Last month, Electronic Arts' David DeMartini criticized Valve's digital distribution platform for not ripping off the consumer. EA's senior vice president for global commerce claimed this practice "sells IP's for what they are really worth" and that "game makers work very hard to make into cashcow franchises."

Destrond
Destrond

Hi EA. I know you don't know what a lowered price is and I know you think that less money is one of the seven deadly sins, but I'd like to let you know that you are not supposed to be over at the adults table because you can't make mature decisions so you aren't allowed to leave the kiddie table yet. Now scamper on back there with your friends THQ and Activision, go on now ya little scamp.

ExplicitMike
ExplicitMike

11 Millions users that are forced to have the service. You forgot that part. I am one of them =( 

Disturbedone07
Disturbedone07

Glad to see Steam doing it's part to encourage users to try new things by making trying those things not wallet breaking. The steam Summer sales have introduced me to a world of new IP's I never thought I would be checking out. My nephew is only 14 and doesn't have a major income other then mowing the grass around the neighborhood and these sales have given him a chance to play all the games his friends have had for a while for a much cheaper price. Honestly I would like to see this be the trend not the exclusive. I'd like to see companies offering games regularly for between $10-$25, not the usual bank busting $60 that frequently new games are. Giant blockbuster games with huge production crews, loads of time invested, and a well known fan base has earned the right to ask for your $60 but how can any new IP's compete without being laughed at for costing so much, without an assurance of a good time?  

msfan1289
msfan1289

one thing i hate about Steam is the Steam sales makes my wallet call the cops and say im beating the crap out of it. xD

TheKeef
TheKeef

Oh and being a gamer who has used both, Steam is far superior in every single way.

 

From selection to price to updates. It's a simple no-contest.

arc_salvo
arc_salvo

 @jellyman68 Agree.  Except I got origins for The Old Republic MMO.  Others got it to play Mass Effect 3 PC.  Other than that, I'm not sure if Origin gets touched much if ever.  It was a very very bad idea to make it to begin with.  As if it could ever compete with Steam or even services like good old games.  I hope they have the sense to get rid of it soon.

poopinpat
poopinpat

 @jellyman68 i almost didn't buy BF3 due to origins...  origins is also a big part of the reason i dont play it anymore either :/ I can't stand the sight of that crap sitting on my desktop lol

BlackSquare
BlackSquare

 @division_9 If they were they would know they would sell more by lower the price. I think we can all agree they are both dumb and greedy.

Daelyn75
Daelyn75

TOR didn't require Origins at all. At least not my pre-order. Get rid of Origins!

arc_salvo
arc_salvo

 @Daelyn75 

Oh dang, I did not know that.  Thanks for the info.  I guess I don't need Origin after all.

colt_a
colt_a

 @Thanatos2k  @Disturbedone07  @ExplicitMike Speak with your wallet, don't use the service regardless.

 

I'd rather pirate a game than install origin.  (Before the "omg pirate train" note that I have 1000s spent on Steam).