Gabe Newell, managing director of Valve Software, is a well known figure in gaming. He recently recieved a Fellowship in the BAFTA Games Awards in recognition of his "outstanding achievement in the art forms of the moving image".
He also talked in an interview about something we rarely hear about; Valve's growth, and the numbers are somewhat incredible...
From the interview: "There's this sort of insatiable desire for gaming right now. I think in the last year our business has grown about 50% on the back of the opportunities that have been created by having these open platforms. And just so people sort of understand the scale of how big it's getting... so like the last Dota 2 update we were generating 3 and a half terabytes per second, so that's about 2% of all of the mobile and land based internet activity was just for a single game update." (Emphasis ours)
These numbers are frankly incredible. The fact that any single game can be using entire percentages of the internet for a time is....stunning. The internet is, after all, very big.
The other stat mentioned is no smaller; Valve is not a small company, so for them to grow by 50% is a phenominal success, and one which will hopefully continue as we get closer to the Official Steambox reveal.
Newell also said: "I think we've seen a bunch of very interesting stuff happening so if you think of a multiplayer game or a social game really as being a collaboration between a game designer and their community, we continue to see that when we have stuff like the workshop where we're actually drawing users in and they're making €300,000 a year generating content for each other, it's really an acknowledgement of the reality of those democratic principles at work."
The BAFTA Fellowships are normally awarded to film producers or actors; Gabe Newell is only the 4th game related fellowship to be awarded. His other three contemporaries are Peter Molyneux, Shigeru Miyamoto, and Will Wright.
Do you think Valve can continue this level of growth? Will they pull off the mysterious Steam Box with its unusual controller? Tell us your thoughts.