Gabe Newell says piracy is about service. Not price.
We all know that Gabe Newell feels that the root of the gaming industry's problem with piracy is not the price of the products but rather the quality of service that the products and the developers of those products provide.
During a recent interview with The Cambridge Student Online, Newell discussed what he means by that in a little further detail.
He said the most common misconception about the piracy issue is that it is all about the pricing of products but Valve believes the issue is more commonly rooted in the services which said products provide.
"For example, if a pirate offers a product anywhere in the world, 24/7, purchasable from the convenience of your personal computer, and the legal provider says the product is region-locked, will come to your country three months after the U.S. release and can only be purchased at a brick and mortar store, then the pirate's service is more valuable. Most DRM solutions diminish the value of the product by either directly restricting a customer's use or by creating uncertainty."
He said that because Valve provides a much greater variety of service that the software pirates can not possibly match, the company has become such a large success in online distribution, that online piracy is basically a non-issue for the company.
Newell concluded by saying Valve doesn't necessarily strive on being a better game developer or ever a better online distributor but rather becoming the best provider of customer service it can possibly be.
This is definitely a refreshing and dare I say innovative way to combat piracy. Valve's initiative to provide top notch customer service, work around BS restrictions like region-locking and make each gaming experience as rewarding and unique as possible, is a greater way to combat piracy than to merely lower prices, or promise to create eventual DLC add ons that will cost the consumer more money.
Gaming is an expensive hobby and gamers want to have a gameplay experience that is well worth the investment that is put into each purchase. This is what will guarantee repeat business, no matter how tempting the thought of downloading from a torrent site might be. Free might be the best possible bargain (even if it happens to be from an illegal source) but if the product is truly great, people will spend the extra cash to own the genuine article. Plain and simple.
But that's just my opinion g1s. What's yours?
Nail on the head, and its not just games either its movies, why piss off your customers by bringing a game out in US first and THEN weeks/months later the rest gets it, they are only hurting themselves and movies are just as bad, endless shit they bring out the amount of money they throw at "stopping pirates" they could use to bring out movie/game on a GLOBAL scale, absolute no reason why not. I remember everyone was crying about music being pirated till the industry kinda woke up and itunes lead the way, who the hell wants to pay out the ass for an album with 2/3 good songs and the rest is shit ? no -one. Games & movie industry need to get with the times. And stop wasting money trying to cling on to the complete control they used to have over us, embrace the future or be left behind.
I agree with Gabe. Three years ago I owned maybe a dozen PC games, now I have over 60 on Steam. Steam offers deals and great services that have won me over to using there service. I have two different computers and the ability to have the same save games on both is very convenient. Steam provides a valuable service that keeps me coming back. They keep bringing me back with their sales, but I now use the service so much that I even buy new games on Steam, because they give a 10% off pre-order bonus that I actually care about. Keep up the great work Valve.
I also want to add that I do not buy games with invasive DRM, like some of Ubisoft's always on DRM that requires an internet connection. It has resulted in me not playing some of their games or buying them used for console since I know they don't get money for used game. DRM makes piracy worse by screwing over the people who aren't pirates. DRM can always be gotten around and by mandating an internet connection, your game is now less valuable than the free pirated game that does not require internet.
What? It's about service? I live on Brazil, I spend about 150% more in comparison with US on games, and this guy says that the piracy it's about service?! Don't be a bitch, dude. You don't know how is hard to live with abusive taxes...
I toally agree. I mean you do spend money on the things you like and to support the product/things. It's basicly like screwattack. You like the site and all, you watch the great job they're doing then you'll support the show. How? Buy stuff from the store.
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You really think this is simply about piracy? If it weren't piracy, they'd find another reason, I'm sure.
... And Gabe Newell continued to be boss. THE END.
Seriously though, the guy knows what we want.
but piracy is the reason why they creating the online censorship in the first place
Which is why they need to extend the services a bit further. So far, online services like Steam and Blizzard have provided a larger support
You know what, I agree Gabe.
Indeed. The speed stays consistent as you download. I only pirate a game on the PC as a way to test if my specs can handle it. If not, then at least I know my money is not wasted.
I pirated lots of games, and I have no shame in admitting it, however, I've never pirated a Valve game. Gabe Newell knows exactly what's going on, and that's exactly why I'll always pay for my Valve games.
Valve is one of the few companies who actually understands PC gamers and respects them. That's why we give them our hard-earned money.
I can actually vouch for what he's saying. I personally find it easier and more convenient to download a game off of Steam than to download a torrent. Downloading a Steam game at blazing fast speeds and running it flawlessly VS finding a torrent with seeders, finding and running cracks, potentially getting malware, hoping the game actually runs, having content and features missing, etc. I'd rather pay the $20-30 for the game.
in a 3rd world country, like mine, it’s hard to find some games (the games i’ve bought are from out of the country or from Steam). some people buy used consoles and used games from Amazon and other sites , the rest buy a hacked console (used obviously) for $30 and pirated games for less than $2, because for a $60 game is a very high price to pay for a middle class person.
Besides, it’s easier to go to google, tip “download x game free”, and download it.
i like buying games but region locking & price play a big part in why i pirate games *when i do anyway* i buy games on PC over Console when im able just so i can get that giant discount and only buy console games that are first party *zelda,mario,gears* rest i pirate because there just so dam expensive
wish consoles had a market similar to steam, would stop me pirating console games if i could get my games at a fair price without waiting 2 weeks minimum to get them shipped in from uk because there atleast 50% cheaper then walking down to my local gaming store
-.- dun judge me till you have to pay $110 /$107us dollars for a game on release and have restrictions like Mortal Kombat & L4D2
He makes a great point. I totally agree. Region-locking is one of the huge reasons people pirate games (such as games that only get released in some countries and not all), as well as things like big differences in release dates and just general shoddy customer service.
Yeah, it's definitely about how the publishers treat their customers. One of the main reasons people pirate their PC games is because of how horribly loaded they are with DRM. Most of them would rather just pirate the game and download a patch to get around it. Ubisoft should not get a single dime for basically treating even their paying customers like thieves.
Valve doesn't have to worry about price, since they rope in a ton of purchases with their sales. It's simply a matter of how you view and treat your customer. If you have to delay a PC port JUST TO THROW IN DRM, you're clearly not taking the consideration of those who bought the game. Besides, it's pointless to do that when you could easily throw the game on Steam. Immediately makes the need for DRM pointless.
It may be big to get free games, but I believe that a substantive portion of the market actually buys the game.
People without the means to purchase the game are the ones who get it for free or cheap from piracy. Piracy is obviously an issue, but with the new DRM programs, I believe that there is a valid defense against it. Its not like the old days where new developers could be pirated into submission.
then again, this the same company who made TF2 free and encourages modding communities.
agree with him but I still won't use steam, that thing is self aware and it hates me.