Few things are capable of causing a ruckus in the PC community quite like the introduction of paid mods to Steam and Skyrim last year. The fallout was spectacular, but we knew it was only a matter of time until the same idea emerged with a new face. Any creators who pop onto their Steam Workshop items now will be greeted with a message saying “You can subscribe to this item for free because you are the creator or listed as a contributor.”
It’s a slight change in terminology but its message is fairly clear - you can have this for free because you made it, but those who aren’t contributors may not be entitled to the mod.
Things don’t end there either, because Valve has also updated the Steam Translation Server, adding in a bunch of new strings which relate to paid mods, including how profits are split, author controlled monetisation and all sorts more.
If I were a betting man I’d hazard a guess at this being why we’ve waited so long for Fallout 4’s Creation Kit. Bethesda and Valve have surely been waiting for a chance to get this all sorted and slide the feature in for a game from the get go.
I know last time around this was covered to death, but I think the same points still stand. I think those doing the work deserve to be rewarded if they wish, and piggybacking off a company’s work also means the developers and publishers deserve their fair share. What a fair share amounts to is the big debate, but it would be great to see some sort of Humble Bundle-style slider used to dole the money.
With it looking increasingly like paid mods are on their way back to Steam, how would you feel? Are there any mods you would pay for, or do you think they should all be free? Let us know!
BRB, going to grab some popcorn.