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How capitalism killed Valve, one of the best video game studios

Mattyp

Gold Member
May 29, 2017
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Well who in their right mind running a company wouldn't choose the path that was easier and made more money? It's an honest question. This isn't about someones artistic vision, it's about a company...

I run a company and there's two ways to look at this. Yes, I want to make money and keep all my employees in work and safe, and yes if there's an option to make more money for myself off one service over another usually you take that one. Any game Valve releases will cover wages, and make a good chunk of change.. Just not as much as doing fuck all, with minimum staff.

There's another situation, when I build for myself or take on a hard architectural build. And in these situations I break even and just cover wages, Why would I do this but? For my LOVE of it. For the love of doing something you have passion for and pushing out the envelope. My next house will actually COST me money, as in it wont be worth what I'm putting into it but I'm doing it to go over the top and enjoy every moment of it do things you normally wouldn't see. The same with anything really architectural you never make big money, you do it to see if you can do it.

What's this all really sum down to ? Gabe (Valve). Apparently a hardcore game enthusiast doesn't actually give a fuck about games anymore, and people should stop treating him like some gaming god figure. In his position any true gamer someone that loved that area still would be trying things, pushing the envelope. Giving the fans what they want. At one time he really did love gaming, but for sometime now he's lost any bit of passion he had for it and only gives a shit about one thing, the money.

Guess what, Bobby Kotick and Activison give more of a shit about gamers then Gabe Newell and Valve. He gets the games out that people are asking for, they have their flaws sure and targeting to make money no doubt or argument about it. But just looking at the newest CoD release and the changes that have happened slowly over the years? Activision and Bobby are still actually listening to you to. Gabe stopped a long time ago, and so did Valve.

Got slightly off topic there sorry.
 

Arkage

Banned
Sep 25, 2012
2,947
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Capitalism isn't really the problem, especially since Valve isn't a publicly traded company beholden to investors that demand ever larger profit margins. At this point I'm more prone to think they never made a HL3/Portal 3 because they lost the skill/confidence/interest/focus required for a major AAA story driven game. They chose to invest everything into Dota2 instead, which is great if you love Esports, but boring as hell for most of their original story driven fans. And a bit simpler, as you can reduce everything into literal spreadsheets of balancing rather than leap off in the deep end that emotional resonance and interesting storytelling demand.
 
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GlassAwful

Member
Dec 4, 2016
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People should ignore the shitty "journalist" article and focus on the rumored ex-employee comment which lines up with previous anonymous accounts of former employees about the alleged shitshow that is Valve, IMO, the biggest disappoint and detriment to the industry.

I've been saying this for a long time and it's only starting to gain traction that Valve as a game studio is fucking dead, meanwhile they focus and expand upon their predatory monetization schemes that have somehow been overlooked despite being the progenitors of some of the worst practices seen in the AAA space.

Valve has been in the position to be the biggest innovators of 3d tech, physics interaction, AI, and game design... They had the golden goose providing them the perfect nestegg to freely experiment and bring to light the most insane, cutting edge, and innovative experiences seen in digital entertainment and yet what are they known for now?
Half assed attempts at hardware and me-too flavor of the week monetization games. They keep trying to find another blue ocean for easy money because that's all they care about and they think they can pull a Nintendo Wii out of their ass.

BPM, steam link, couch gaming initiative, Steam machines, the controller, and now VR are not some passion projects, they are miss reads on the desires of the wider public to get a foothold in a new platform after the Steam PC well runs dry.

This all stems from a dysfunctional CEO who secretly hates the industry ever since the development of HL2 almost put the company out of business. He took the hacking and the backlash from their lies about the state of the game at reveal personally and has had a vendetta ever since. It took a while but now the company has shed the dead weight of passionate developers and is laser focused on his vision to fuck the industry and its followers over as efficiently as possible. Dman im drunk.
 
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Clear

Deer/Dur
Feb 2, 2009
12,495
7,391
1,365
The whole notion of capitalism as being in any way antagonistic to the production of videogames is a fucking joke. Videogames are an expression of captalism!

They serve the interests of the petit bourgeoisie not the proles comrade!
 

RuhRo

Member
Jun 22, 2013
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None of the focus on Steam as a money mill is surprising, but you’d think they’d use some small sliver of that to subsidize prestige game development.
 
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Bakkus

Member
Oct 12, 2014
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Norway
This thread should be posted again without the politics flair. Yes, I agree with you, capitalism has very little if anything at all to do with Valve's current stance on gaming. However, this discussion has completely derailed what could have been an interesting discussion on what is currently going on at Valve.
 

Tesseract

Banned
Dec 7, 2008
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Kusanagi2086

Member
Feb 3, 2018
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This thread should be posted again without the politics flair. Yes, I agree with you, capitalism has very little if anything at all to do with Valve's current stance on gaming. However, this discussion has completely derailed what could have been an interesting discussion on what is currently going on at Valve.

Agreed but I will argue privately owned companies that does not have investors have more freedom in what they can do, because once you are beholdened to shareholders demanding more and more profit it will eventually be at the expense of your product.

EA is a perfect example of that yes they are making money but the ways they are doing it have made their games worse and worse.

And valve is a privately owned company so they are responsible for their own game devs shitting the bed not capitalism.
 
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Wonko_C

Member
Jul 5, 2010
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Cancun, Mexico.
Has the article's author been living in a cave these past years?

 
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tr1p1ex

Member
Feb 18, 2014
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capitalism is what brought us HL and STeam in the first place.

Unfettered capitalism....led to them owning the market with STeam and basically turned them into the cable company. Made them fat and rich and lazy.

Also realistically....they never really made a game besides Half Life. I mean CS was a mod that they bought right? Portal was a game/team/developer they bought. What did they actually develop in house? DOTA was a mod too if I remember right. They bought that too afaik. Then we're left with Left 4 dead. I don't know the story behind that one. TEam Fortress was part of Half LIfe originally wasn't it?

They really never were a big game developer.
 
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Bernkastel

Member
Mar 8, 2018
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Has the article's author been living in a cave these past years?

Knowing Valve it would be another GAAS game like DOTA and Artifact but for VR.
 
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