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Former Steam employee claims Epic are saving the game industry

Published: 20:38, 08 April 2019
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Logos of the Epic Games Store and Steam
Epic Games Store v. Steam

Former Valve developer Richard Geldreich has expressed support to what Epic Games are doing with their Steam-competing distribution platform, claiming that Epic and their CEO Tim Sweeney are saving the gaming industry from Valve and Steam.

Geldreich response came as a result of a discussion on Sweeney's tweet, where Epic's CEO politely asked his detractors to stop using proven misinformation as arguments. Like the one about Tencent being the owner of his company, for instance.

In his response, Geldreich told Epic to "hang in there" as they're "doing great things for the video industry", but he was quickly confronted by several outspoken detractors.

Their argument was that they don't want spyware riddled software, which is yet another misconception that isn't going away. Geldreich argued that if personal data collection was what made launchers spyware, Steam would be the number one threat.

"If it wasn't for Epic the entire industry would still be crunching away to support Valve’s 30% revshare. Most of these profits went to a tiny handful of people who could care less about the industry or working conditions. Thank the gaming gods for Epic", he wrote.

Those of us who remember Valve's arrival on the scene and the eventual forming of Steam know what GabeN and Co did for games. They've changed the landscape and their 30 per cent share was so generous that it kicked off a genuine gaming renaissance.

In that sense, you could easily say that we're witnessing the second coming of Steam but their aggressive expansion policy, which was a matter of public record from the start, resulted in Epic now being lambasted as enemies of free gaming. 

"By all means, if you want to support the PC status quo (Valve oppressing developers with its unsustainable 30% cut), by all means, stay with Steam. Valve became abusive to its developers, because it thought the printing press would last forever", Geldreich said.

Epic Games The Epic Games Store's revenue split graph Epic's revenue split comparison graph

We must admit, too little of the narrative around the Epic Games Store seems to be focusing on the economic benefits for developers, not to mention the resulting large scale economic changes that inevitably follow such shifts. Which is quite sad really, as it's not Santa's elves that make games, but actual people.

You can find the tweet in question here .

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