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Valve charges 75% on mods

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Not_Sure, Apr 25, 2015.

  1. Not_Sure

    Not_Sure

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    Last edited: Apr 25, 2015
  2. Kemonono

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    I think 75% sounds very harsh...

    I think its fair to compare it to making a cover track, in the music industry.
    If you sell a cover track you have to pay ~ 10% interests to the rights holder and ~30% to itunes,
    leaving you with the remaining 60% of the money. (arrest me if I'm mistaken at this point).

    Comparing that to 25%, where in some cases the content are completely original, albeit, exported into the rights holders platform, makes it sound way to much.
     
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  3. zombiegorilla

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    I don't really have an opinion on the price, but I am pretty surprised that 1) it took this long for it to happen and 2) that Epic didn't do it first.
     
  4. SunnySunshine

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    Obviously, getting paid for work allows the author to spend more time on that said work. I have no trouble paying for work in the form of mods. But I think 75% sounds like ... a lot. I wouldn't be interested in making mods for commercial purposes if this was the deal. But then again, I don't make mods.
     
  5. hippocoder

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    75% seems very fair considering you don't make the game or own any of it ... pay your dues.

    If you don't like it, well... don't do it.
     
  6. Fab4

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    In my opinion its simply an insolence.
    A lot of games live on the possibility to be able to be modded. And now the companies get more money from other peoples work then themselves, although they polish their games? Its like tuning a car and have to pay the car manufacturer for this, absolute nonsense.
    I think it is OK that the studios get payed but not that much. If you assume that steam still gets 30%, only 35% of the rest goes to the guy who actually did something for it an 65% to the game studio.
    Its simply ridiculously.
     
  7. Not_Sure

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    This kind of make me wonder what happened to unofficial expansions like Diablo: Hellfire.


    Because if I'm not mistaken, so long as the code is all your own you can legally make expansions without the consent of the original developer.

    So how are these mods different?

    Maybe it's about getting to use Steam...
     
  8. hippocoder

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    A lot of outrage from people who've never modded in their lives or finished a damn thing. Another day on the internet filled with crying babies.


    No, your comment is absolute utter nonsense. This is basically saying "ok I've made a mod to the back seats of a ferrari and I want my mod to be sold as an optional extra to the entire world from inside ferrari's own flagship store.

    Big difference. Big, big difference.

    Of course you could just offer your mod for free from your website. Still nothing stopping that, last I checked. So?
     
  9. Fab4

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    You are totally right here. There is a difference. All I say is that 65% is way too much.
    But I also have to disagree to your argumentation in some way. The so called "flagship store" is steam. So the "flagship store" already gets its 30%

    You still can, that's true. And if you have absolutely no intention to make money it's totally fine.
    But I am still missing a good argument why the publisher is supposed to get that amount of money, without offering anything in addition except saying yes to allow sales of mods on steam.
     
  10. Blacklight

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    I'm all for the idea of paid modding if prices are reasonable. People getting paid for their hard work is always a good thing and having a monetary incentive could attract professional development teams to expand on your favourite games without the need to jump through hoops getting permissions.

    However only getting a 25% cut? I wonder how that's split between Bethesda and Valve?

    25% is too low. I reckon that's just going to encourage modders to raise their prices beyond reasonable and scare off people who might consider doing it for a profit.

    Plus there is always the issues of mod theft and the fact that many mods are build off of one another. It's a whole mess of who has the rights to what.
     
  11. Not_Sure

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    Again, I'm not sure that the company could do anything about it if you did sell the mod on your own.

    Does anyone know anything about it? Like maybe they could point to a court case about it?

    Regardless, what's really being sold here is realestate.
     
  12. hippocoder

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    Well the thing is it's about exposure, say you make $1 profit but reach 1000 people? vs $10 profit but reach 10 people? Even at 75% you're likely to make more not less money at the end of it.

    As you're using a very well known IP (people don't generally bother modding a game nobody's heard of) then it's only fair you pay for the right to earn money from that. Since it's steam's platform they want to encourage developers to design games to be moddable from the outset and this is very good encouragement for developers to invest a lot of time doing so. Making a game moddable isn't easy.

    So the way I see it is, it's OK and everyone wins. I don't see a bad side to this. If it was 75% for your game... well now, that's just too much. But this is a mod... it's nowhere near the workload of making a game, but you get much more exposure than you ever would have making your own game.

    And is this a forced payment? are free mods no longer allowed? Last I checked you could still charge 0 and nothing changes. So what's really the issue here?

    - modder gets some money to mod
    - developer gets some money to continue supporting
    - valve gets some money for making it all work + store ownership
     
  13. Ostwind

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    In general I like the change a lot that people can now earn money for creating new content for games but absolutely hate the way they started this if this is supposed to be a kickstart for the mod selling thing in workshop games. The 75% sounds a rip-off when I think all the mods I have used in various games. As mod buyer I dislike it a lot if most of the item cost to does not even go to the item creator I would like to support. It however says in the agreement that the share is game based so it might not be as bad for others but this is not good PR for the feature launch.

    I'm not a fan of Skyrim or any other that theme games so haven't really used any of the affected mods either. I did browse the paid section and not sure about the share percentage in that game if the sold content is mostly swords, armors and such small changes. When I think other games where I have used mods and other user made content has been larger scale stuff and sometimes even better than official DLC (map packs, dozens of units and game modes) it not really fair for the authors to only get 25% for that work.

    I'm not sure how many of you here are thinking about this change as a developer or as a player. Compared to the old no paid mods and from player perspective I mainly see Bethesda (and/or maybe Valve) now leeching more money with player content with such percentage cut. I rather press the donate button on mods own page than send my money to the party that aren't doing enough to earn 75%. The game developer sure deserves to get some money from the sales but it should not be such a huge cut.
     
  14. hippocoder

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    Leeching? who is the leech though? It's not like some random dude making a sword mod spent 2 years and 50 million dollars struggling through deadlines to make the game is it?

    As opposed to the old revenue being 0 and the new revenue being potentially 100k or more even at 75% for a popular mod, I'd say that's very, very fair for a mod.

    Most importantly, mods devalue paid DLC, so the developer does need some compensation. Especially if you consider that there's only so much money an individual will pay, and so much time to use paid content. Paid mods do compete with DLC.
     
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  15. Ostwind

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    As I said I'm not sure about the percentage if all mods for that game are dollar swords. It sounds like the silly hat sales in TF2 or similar which probably had the same percentage(?). It might be ok share for a such mini mods or content but if the game supports and has mods that add tons of content for the game I only see Bethesda leeching. I'm also talking from player perspective and not from a modders. For me "very fair" and 75% do not belong to same sentence for mods that add tens or hundreds of hours of content to the game and take a lot of time to create. Fair would be 40-50% or so for actual content creator and very fair over 50%. Again this is how I feel as a gamer and mod buyer.
     
  16. Fab4

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    True

    The Problem is the following:
    They get 25% of a product they created for a platform that is required (the game)

    The get approximately 45% of the product revenue they did not create but offer the platform for.
    Compared to the creator of the content its 65% of the money that is left after valve took its money.

    They get the usual money as for all products and that is okay. They offer a popular platform to buy content and have to struggle with a lot of things.

    And this is exactly the point in your argumentation I don't understand. The big studios create a game for a lot of money and they get a price for that product that is much higher than the price for a mod. So they get their money for the development, anyway (as long as the games sells)
    Independently from this point also the mod is work and people will only pay as much as they think its worth. When you offer a mod for 40 bucks and the people buy it, then you cannot say its not worth the money because there wasn't so much work needed as for the game itself. When the people pay it, its worth the money. Supply and demand, as simple is that.

    And here is the important part hidden. First of all I agree. They are offering the platform and should be compensated for that. But secondly the Mods compete with the official DLC's is imo a poor argument. What will a customer make buy a mod instead of an official DLC? The quality or popularity.

    When a studio makes a game moddable, it is okay to get a piece of the cake when mods are going to be sold. But to get more than the people who actually created the content that at this point generates revenue...I simply don't get the point.
     
    Last edited: Apr 25, 2015
  17. ippdev

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    Are Valve sending any revenue back to the game IP owners? If so that would be a fair shake. If not, I have not yet decided if this would amuse me, make me furious or cause me to raise a stink and demand monies due for the IP originators that the MODs made money for Valve with via the courts or threat thereof..
     
  18. Breyer

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    Imo this is reasonable that Valve and developer take some cut but 75% is waaay too much imo there should be 60%. in that case mod maker take 40% Valve 30% and developer 30%. Fair enough.

    Another story is multivariations between mods - some are just skin and in that case 25% revenue isn't a problem but some mods are complete overhaul/improve and in that case mod maker imo deserve at least 50% revenue.... Perfect solution would be ability to set revenue cut per mod rather than per platform(game). Or solution like in humble bundle where buyer decide where money should go

    EDIT

    and one more thing: as im aware valve state that they send you money only if you above 400$ pure revenue otherwise you practically lost these money... this isnt fine either....
     
    Last edited: Apr 25, 2015
  19. Fab4

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    Also this argument is valid for the publishers. They didn't make any revenue with the mod and now they want to take most. They only profited inderictly by all the new content that made their games more interesting.
    Additionally the the publishers don't get a bad reputation by bad mods, which differs by DLC's.

    I agree 100%

    If this is true, it would really be a punch in the face. This would be fraud of every modder.
     
    Last edited: Apr 25, 2015
  20. Ostwind

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    Here is Forbes article about the subject with good points

    http://www.forbes.com/sites/insertc...ds-are-a-legal-ethical-and-creative-disaster/

    Well you need to earn at least 100$ to your account before they will transfer anything to you. With only 25% of sales and 0-30% tax withholdings it means you have to earn over $400 before seeing any money.
     
  21. elmar1028

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    We would get another layer of "crappy products" on Steam.

    First we have Greenlight and Early Access.
    And now we have paid Mods, which have little to no barriers of entry and quality control (well only user reviews but you saw what happened with Greenlight).
     
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  22. ShilohGames

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    Yes, it sounds like the 75% cut is split between Valve and the game developers (game IP owners). No idea what that split is, but there is a split.
     
  23. Tomnnn

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    I'm not sure how I feel about this. It's using an established engine and code base... but so is every other game made that isn't using an engine made from scratch. Imagine if Unity and Unreal wanted 75% of every sale!

    That being said, it is more than the $0 previously made, but it's also more than the $0 we would pay for mods. The whole "pc gaming is the best thing ever" for me stemmed from the idea that you could buy even a terrible game and mods could make it unbelievable. Now they want money for that? Sounds like outsourced DLC...

    I'm so glad I don't play games as much as I used to. It seems every year there's a new profit-focused change for pc gaming. I don't have to feel bad about it either because the new generation of gamers has been raised in the world of nickel&dime mobile games, so this will be nothing new or unreasonable.
     
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  24. ShilohGames

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    Honestly, I am surprised this did not happen sooner. There needed to be a way to help modders make some money developing mods for games. Otherwise some of the best modders were probably going to stop modding. The real threat to modding is not Steam giving the modders an option to make money. The real thread to modding are powerful, inexpensive game engines like Unity5 and UE4. Why would somebody spend a lot of time developing a mod for an existing game when they could put that effort into developing their own game using a free or inexpensive game engine?

    By setting up an option for modders to make money modding existing games, Valve has made it vastly easier for modders to make money by modding existing games. That will keep some of the most talented modders busy modding games. Those modders were probably considering building their own games in Unity5 or UE4. At least some of those modders will keep modding now that Valve has made it easy for them to make money with mods.
     
  25. Ostwind

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    The current revenue share encourages people to make only small mods that don't take huge effort to make. People who make complex mods and/or for free will slowly fade away in current situation even if they do it just for fun. There was already post elsewhere where a modder said its discouraging to do anything in the long run when the guys next to you will spam set of crap for dollars.

    BTW here is thread of one of the guys who got invited by Valve an Bethesda to the launch that failed. He has since deleted most or all of his account cause of all the attacks and threats.

    https://www.reddit.com/r/skyrimmods/comments/33qcaj/the_experiment_has_failed_my_exit_from_the/
     
  26. Spoken_OS

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    The 25% of profits is not set in stone. According to the workshop FAQ the publisher is the one that determines the revenue split. So in this case Bethesda are the ones who have determined that the modder gets 25%. I'm sure we will see higher percentages for the modder with other publishers.
     
  27. Ostwind

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    Yep but the 25% is the one used when launching a new key feature and usually used as base by others following when things are done generally. After this mess I'm not sure however who will adopt the paid mods scheme at all or with what share rates. All Bethesda games are under downvote attacks all around the net.
     
  28. mdrotar

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    Where do I sign up? I need to shovel my crap on there before all the other get-rich-quick hopefuls flood the store with their crap.
     
  29. frosted

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    This is a tricky thing. The game's original producer takes the lions share, with valve and the mod creator splitting the rest.

    In an ideal world, this would create an incentive for game makers to invest more heavily in modding tools allowing for better games overall. Basically, the mod community creating DLC.

    On the other hand, the very best modding communities are built around sharing. Mods built on top of other mods, good ideas reused, shared openly. Often the very best mods are used as the basis for other mods, tools are made to integrate multiple mods smoothly and without conflict, etc.

    The commercial incentive here could really destroy the modding community as we know it.

    It's just very hard to say what will happen with this. It could really be great for gaming, or it could be divisive and destructive. Who knows.
     
  30. BIG-BUG

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    That's a dismissive comment against modders. There are very impressive mods out there, I don't think a modders-are-no-real-developers attitude is appropriate here.

    Of course in general it is a nice move to allow modders to earn money for themself, however 75% sounds a bit greedy to me. This way it feels more like "How can we make even more money from our dedicated modding community?" and "How can we protect our own crappy DLC from competition?".

    A split of like 30% steam, 30% publisher, 40% modder would be more reasonable.
     
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  31. RichardKain

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    75% is fairly reasonable when you consider how many hands are in that particular pie. Valve doesn't keep all of that share, they have to split it with the publishers and developers of the games that are being modded. It's the only way they could have ever persuaded those companies to go along with it. Selling mods requires the permission and active participation of the companies that own the rights to the original game.

    And realistically, 25% take-away for the content developer is not that different from actual game developers working under a publisher. They don't get to keep the lions-share of their game sales either. The publisher keeps most of the profits and feeds the developers enough to keep them going. (or just closes them down after the game is done)

    More than 25% would be better. There's no arguing that point. More is usually better. But modders getting an official storefront to monetize their efforts at all is leaps and bounds ahead of where we were before this.
     
  32. Aiursrage2k

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    I think 25% is too low. I wonder if we will start to see indie game mods In the future, hotline Miami had a map editor for example
     
    Last edited: Apr 25, 2015
  33. RichardKain

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    Then your best option is to not produce any mods for Skyrim. Bethesda was responsible for setting the 25% profit split for mods on Skyrim. The best way for you to voice your objection to this being too low is to simply not make mods for Skyrim. If there is no content to be sold, that 25% becomes meaningless, and Bethesda gets no money from mods. Vote with your dollar. Also, don't buy any of the mods that other people make. (though this would be seen as an attack on indie modders)

    It's possible that other companies may raise the modder's take on newly produced content. A higher modder share is more likely to encourage a greater number of content creators to jump on board. This whole initiative is very new, and still needs to find a point of balance.
     
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  34. Aiursrage2k

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    I had no intention of making a mod, or playing one. What will probably end up happening is that popular mod will eventually walk away to form there own game sequel, because no way will someone want to give them 75% forever. They are basically funding there own competitors at that rate
     
    Last edited: Apr 25, 2015
  35. Ryiah

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    Many of the higher quality mods for games such as Skyrim feature custom content created by the mod authors outside of the modding tools (aka Blender, GIMP, etc). How is this any different than creating a game with Unity? We aren't building the entire engine ourselves, we're simply licensing. Games are similar in that you license them too.

    I have no problems with a small royalty added to the game. At the very least it encourages more games to support modding that may not have otherwise. Would you consider it reasonable though if Unity started charging 75%? Or would you abandon ship with everyone else for a different engine?
     
    Last edited: Apr 25, 2015
  36. Ryiah

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    Except the game developer is not creating any content themselves. Steam at least has to maintain the hardware and software enabling the entire thing, but the developer is merely giving you limited access to the tools they used to create their game. Most of those games would have already had modding support without this.

    It would be an entirely different matter if the game developers were required to continue supporting their games, but the reality is this won't actually affect that. So it is basically money for no real effort on their part.
     
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  37. RichardKain

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    I was referring to when the game developers create the game in the first place. Do you honestly think that the average game developer gets to keep all of the profits they make? If that game developer is working through a publisher, they will be lucky to see 25% of the total sales, despite the fact that they made all of the content. This is how it usually is in the large-scale development scene. The publishers are where most of the profits go.

    Digital distribution is changing that. A digital-only developer who is working independently through Steam/GoG/AppStore/Google Play will have to pay the platform holder their cut, but everything past that is their take-home pay. In this kind of scenario the developer can expect 50%+ of the profits, often as high as 70%.

    But you can't realistically expect that sort of profit break-down when you are dealing with a modding situation. The game's original creators are going to take their cut. Should that cut be smaller? Perhaps. But it is going to be up to the rights-holders of the game, which usually means the game's publisher. And publishers tend to be a bit greedy when it comes to this sort of thing.
     
  38. Ryiah

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    Yes, that does make sense. I suppose only time will tell if this comes back to bite them. Some people seem to dislike using alternative sources for their mods, such as the Nexus, but already there has been mention of authors pulling their mods from the Steam Workshop. They may not have a choice soon.

    Less time spent in the workshop looking for mods equates to less time they are exposed to the paid mods. The current prices may simply be an early way to gauge the audience though.
     
    Last edited: Apr 25, 2015
  39. RichardKain

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    This is becoming increasingly less true as time goes on. It's why we see successful studios like Bungie able to buy their way out from under the publisher that owned them. In this day and age, there are more numerous avenues for investment capital than there used to be. Major publishers are no longer the sole source of that kind of support.

    More often than not these days, companies turn to publishers for either retail releases, or for marketing support. Both of those aspects of the business involve an initial pay-out above and beyond the cost of development. These are the areas where publishers are still relevant. Though even that is beginning to erode, as cheaper, more manageable alternatives arise.

    Publishers will always have a place in the business. But the mega-publishers we currently consider to be a given won't be around much longer. The future is going to be one of mid-size publishers who mainly focus on marketing, organization, and branding.
     
  40. Ryiah

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    True. That's why I switched mentality halfway through the post and just tossed the initial post. We do have alternative paths and among them are the fact that the tools are no longer thousands of dollars just to start development.

    My method of thinking on something has a habit of coming to the full conclusion after I post. Still need to work on that. :p
     
  41. yoonitee

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    I think that will backfire.

    They should charge 25% or less on mods. Then hundreds more mods will get made and they will get more money in the long run.

    75% will just put people off. And it comes across as money grabbing.

    P.S.

    I don't really know what a mod is! I've never done one. :p
     
  42. Ryiah

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  43. evan140

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    "to earn a living by selling"

    75% cut on all sales

     
  44. Ostwind

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    Yeah... said Valve and Bethesda and then laugh all the way to the bank
     
  45. evan140

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    Then player that's never made any content is like, "Hey, I just bought a mod for Skyrim for a $1! He just made like 60 cents or something I bet! I feel great I supported the community. :):);):D:D"

    Meanwhile that dude is like ... "Great. I made a quarter. 5 more sales and I can buy a single soda! Great..."
     
  46. Kiwasi

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    If you consider modder, developer, publisher and steam as independent entities, the 25% for each is perfectly fair.

    I think this is more of a marketing fopar, rather then a bad deal.
     
  47. movra

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    So you have to make 4 livings to make a living.
     
  48. darkhog

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    25% of $1 is still better than 100% of $0.
     
  49. movra

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    http://www.reddit.com/r/gaming/comments/33uplp/mods_and_steam/

     
  50. Ostwind

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    Yes maybe for the modder however as buyer me and many others not willing to pay anything if 75% of the pay does not go to the author which is something that many don't seem to understand here. It's not only about modder getting something but players disliking to support this greed. We rather donate directly to the author or leave it be.

    Game developers are entitled to get their share as long as it's fair. End users don't care how the 75% is shared when they know that not much effort is put in to get it.
     
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