Valve Adds Warning to Steam Early Access FAQ

June 5, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Valve has updated the official FAQ for Early Access releases on Steam, now noting that games purchased by consumers within this program "may never be finished." The new warning from Valve in the Steam Early Access, is an answer to the question, "When will these games release?" The answer, according to Valve's update:

"Players should be aware that some developers will be unable to finish their game - for whatever reason." The platform owner also notes that, "It's up to the developer to determine when they are ready to 'release.' Some developers have a concrete deadline in mind, while others will get a better sense as the development of the game progresses. You should be aware that some teams will be unable to 'finish' their game. So you should only buy an Early Access game if you are excited about playing it in its current state."

The update follows several early access games that ultimately didn't deliver what they promised, including the first-person sci-fi post-apocalyptic open-world game Earth: Year 2066, which Valve removed from the service and offered refunds to disgruntled customers to after the game had been labeled "broken" and unfit for sale. The developer, Killing Day Studios, had also been accused of misleading customers with inaccurate claims on the game's Steam product page.

Hammerpoint Interactive's zombie themed MMO The War Z was removed from sale on Steam after the developer was accused of lying on the game's Steam page about the game's content and features. Two months later, the game was again available on Steam, this time with a more accurate product page.  In June 2013, The War Z changed its name to Infestation: Survivor Stories following a trademark issue, reportedly to do with Brad Pitt's World War Z film.

Source: Eurogamer


Comments

Re: Valve Adds Warning to Steam Early Access FAQ

I have bought a number of early access titles on Steam and have happily logged hundreds of hours of play between them. I even bought Towns which is held up as an example of failure of the system but seeing as how I spent $15 on it and put in 10's of hours I didn't feel ripped off in the slightest. Under a more traditional publishing method I probably would have never gotten to play it at all. 

People need to pay more attention to what they are getting into with early access so if this helps then that is great because I definitely feel that a lot of people jump in without understanding the limitations (and awesome benefits) of playing unfinished games. Then they feel entitled and disgruntled that things don't work as well or that things change and they attack the developer, platform, and early access concept in general.

Re: Valve Adds Warning to Steam Early Access FAQ

The War Z was never removed from steam completely.  it was allowed to simply change it's name and completely redo it's front page. I believe steam simply disallowed users to purchase the Original game listing, then converted everyone to the new AppID (it did change Ids).  It still exists as Infestation: Survivor Stories if you look through their store page and it's still purchasable.

 

So there's a bit of mis-information there.

Re: Valve Adds Warning to Steam Early Access FAQ

No misinformation in the GP article so far as I can tell.  It says the game "was removed from sale on Steam" and it was.

 

Andrew Eisen

 
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