‘Don’t ban Web3 games’ — 29 blockchain game studios and groups write an open letter to Valve to revert ban on NFT games
- A group of 29 developers have written an open letter to Valve to allow blockchain-based games back on Steam.
- Valve, the parent company behind Steam, banned all such games from the gaming platform on October 16.
- Steam competitor
Epic Gamestook the opportunity to take a different route — allowing blockchain gameson the Epic Games Store.
Meanwhile, Valve is yet to issue a response to the letter.
"In the spirit of [Steam's] pioneering vision, we ask that you take a chance on this rapidly growing technology."
The letter argues that games utilising blockchain technology and web3 token-based technologies like decentralised autonomous organisations (DAOs) — a system where algorithms are in charge of the governance and protocols instead of humans — and non-fungible tokens (NFTs) can positively enhance the user experience of games, and create new economic opportunities for users and creators.
In fact, the biggest NFT project in the crypto universe right now is Axie Infinity with a whopping $2.6 billion in all-time sales volumes, according to NFT data aggregator Crypto Slam. Sky Mavis, the company behind Axie Infinity, raised $152 million at a nearly $3 billion valuation to help grow its game even further.
The traditional online gaming industry saw a huge surge in interest during the COVID-19 pandemic, but it still faces issues like cross-game interoperability, the lack of ownership and limited ways to earn revenue. Crypto could be the missing building block with the potential to empower developers and gamers alike, especially when it comes to monetisation.
Valve’s decision to ban all blockchain-based games from Steam
The letter comes on the heels of Valve’s decision to ban all blockchain-based games from its platform. The company issued an edit on its Onboarding Guidelines on October 16, telling users that such games could not be published on Steam, one of the biggest gaming platforms in the world.
“Applications built on blockchain technology that issue or allow exchange of cryptocurrencies or NFTs,” the company’s guidelines said. However, the gaming giant hasn’t yet explained its decision to ban games that use NFTs and cryptocurrencies.
According to 'Age of Rust' developer SpacePirate, Valve doesn't want "items that can have real-world value" on Steam.
Steam’s loss is Epic’s gain
Steam’s decision to ban blockchain-based games was quickly followed by gaming giant Epic Games, which did exactly the opposite. The company welcomed blockchain game developers onto its platform on October 16. Albeit, there are currently no plans to integrate the play-to-earn model onto Fornite — the platform’s most popular game.
“Epic Games Store will welcome games that make use of blockchain tech provided they follow the relevant laws, disclose their terms, and are age-rated by an appropriate group. Though Epic's not using crypto in our games, we welcome innovation in the areas of technology and finance.”
As far as gaming on PCs goes, the Epic Games Store, Microsoft’s Windows Store and Steam are the biggest marketplaces for downloading games. The Epic Store, though, isn’t as popular as Steam or the Windows Store. The company has been trying to make it more ubiquitous and supporting blockchain gaming may be the way it gets an upper hand over its competitors.
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