Steam holding up Half-Life development - Stardock

Digital distribution platform demands a massive deal of attention, says former rival

The resources required to successfully operate digital distribution platform Steam have led to a slowdown in Valve's game development capabilities.

That's the opinion of Stardock's Brad Wardell, who has just sold Steam competitor Impulse to retailer GameStop.


"Even though Valve is in Seattle, where you can get developers everywhere, [Steam's] had an effect on their own development schedule," he told IndustryGamers. "There's not been a new Half-Life in a long time; a lot of people have complained about that.

"They've had their own challenges getting new titles out the door, and a big part of that I'm sure is the same problems we've had. When one of your groups is so ridiculously profitable, every business instinct you have is to throw all your best people at it, because that's what's making the money. That's just sound business. At the end of the day, again you have decide if that's what you want to do."

Wardell added: "If you were to look at a timeline of games developed in-house by Valve - not developed externally and then acquired - and you look at before Steam and after Steam, it's definitely had an effect.

"I don't argue that that's a good thing or bad thing, but I do know the effect that's had on us, where I've had to put some of my top developers over the years onto Impulse to make sure it was getting better and better."

Valve is still "not prepared to talk about" Half-Life 2: Episode Three, the company said in February.

[ SOURCE: IndustryGamers ]