Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Greenlight Spotlight: An Explanation

Recently, Valve added a new feature to Steam called Greenlight, a project that allows indie developers to submit their games for approval in hopes that they will be given a spot on Steam. The thing that sets Greenlight apart, however, is that the people approving the games are the users themselves: Valve has set up a process that allows users to review submissions to the Greenlight project and vote on which games they would like to see for sale on Steam.

There has been some criticism directed at Valve for some of the choices regarding Greenlight's direction: some people believe that the voting system is somewhat arbitrary as it seems no one knows exactly how many votes a game needs to receive to be approved. Likewise, there have been issues with joke games being submitted for approval -- something that Valve has aimed to correct by requesting a $100 fee for any new submissions.

Regardless of any criticism, I believe the Greenlight project is something very noble: it gives indie games a chance to be published on Steam, a platform that is already huge and is growing every day (especially considering Steam's Big Picture has just launched). It also gives them a chance to get some publicity that they may not have been able to get otherwise, which is often something that indie games desperately need.

Valve recently announced the first ten games to be approved via the Greenlight project, a list you can check out here. Of the first ten games, there are a few that I'm excited for: most prominently, Routine looks absolutely amazing -- and, as a hard sci-fi-themed survival horror, right up my alley; Kenshi speaks to me as being similar to Mount & Blade, a game that I really liked; and Black Mesa, the remake of the original Half-Life (a game that is forever a classic), is a project that has been a very long time coming.

What our Greenlight Spotlight will be for is to highlight games that we have found on Greenlight that we believe should be approved. We will do this in an effort to get them a bit more coverage and to help them achieve their Greenlit status, simply because we want to play them! Some of the games that we feature in the future may not actually be on Greenlight, but the project itself is a wonderful opportunity and we think that it is worth bringing attention to!

Check out our first Greenlight Spotlight later today and keep an eye out for them in the future; we have to do everything we can to help out these indie developers. It would be a shame to let this awesome opportunity pass us by.

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