Since Steam’s Greenlight debuted less than a week ago, seven hundred submissions have added to the roster. While that feat, in and of itself, is impressive; not all of the line-up is as impressive. There is wonderful content to be found in the list, but so much of it is buried behind content that does not match the ideals of the program. Rather posted as a joke, or by fans not quite understanding Greenlight’s intention, submissions have been flooded with material players just aren’t interested in seeing. As the first step toward refinement, Valve has implemented a two part update to Greenlight’s current functionality.
The first of which has warranted the majority of the attention. In order to establish a more thought and commitment driven submission process, a $100 fee has been attached to the submission process itself. The proceeds will not go to Valve, however; but, to the Child’s Playcharity organization. A Valve announcement thread noted that “We have no interest in making money from this, but we do need to cut down the noise in the system”. As well, current submissions need not worry about retroactive fees, as any game listed before the update will not be subjected to the bill.
Secondly, what with the goal of narrowing the submission field all ready in place, Valve intends to narrow the way players search for the games on Greenlight. In the stead of the page full of titles Greenlight sifters were used to perusing, a cleaner more concise list comprised of popular and new titles will be presented as the mast-head. The list will not contain any game the user has previously ranked, and will serve the same function as Steam’s featured items list - suggestions in the forefront, with the ease of a filtered or broad search readily available.
As the discoverability of new titles remains the priority on Greenlight’s agenda, this two part update stands to further that end. The $100 toll for entry will halt the influx of spontaneous or misunderstood submissions, allowing serious developers a little more elbow room on stage; and give to a great cause. All the while, the reformed search and presentation system will provide gamers with a more pleasant discovery experience.
- Doug Comstock