Good question, but that depends on how the system is implemented. I'm hoping SE will have a fairly large user base, meaning it would take a substantial number of crooked members to prop up a sham game, and I imagine this sort of collusion might have serious consequences for both sides if it comes to light. Then there's the fact that if that particular dev's games are shite, their own keys would hold little value and other devs' keys would cost them a pretty penny anyway. Granted, we don't know HOW exactly the whole thing is going to be put in place, but Valve apparently admitted that Greenlight is a trainwreck, which shows a measure of awareness that hopefully might result in some safeguards. There's also the issue WHY games like that sell in the first place. It's not like people who were somehow misled into thinking they're good couldn't return them or leave reviews that'd quickly overwhelm any fake good ones. It seems exploitable trading cards are the root issue and low barriers of entry at most facilitate it. As such, hampering or removing exploitation of the trading card system would mean we don't just have to rely on Explorers to fix the situation.Laughing Man said:and what's to stop this system being abused? (...) So what's to stop someone setting up a similar group the dev gives the members a bunch of free keys and then they turn up on mass to give the game a series of great reviews and in turn this bumps to the front page
A couple issues with that idea:Laughing Man said:What Valve should have done is bumped the application amount to 1 maybe 2 thousand dollars. The game then gets submitted to valve directly who then use the cash to employee someone (like they fucking need the cash to do that) to QA the game. If the game is an assest flip or bugged or just isn't of a standard then Valve issues a report back to the developer with hints and tips on what could be done to improve the game. Part of the deal is that the developer can resubmit the game as many times as they wish provided they are making actual positive changes to it.
- it hurts small devs, especially from developing countries. For example [https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Income_in_India] that sort of fee is more or less equal to average yearly income of a person in India. That's not the sort of money you want to gamble on a game that might not sell and it's by far not the poorest country out there either.
- It's still prone to bribery or influence through personal connections - in a way even moreso, as a smaller number of people has a greater effect on a game's ability to get published.
- A group of in-house employees more or less subjectively gauging the quality of games sounds suspiciously like focus groups and we already know those don't work well. Even if you do away with the "just isn't of a standard" criterion, deciding what constitutes a bannable asset flip could also be a contentious issue, seeing as even legitimate works often reuse assets [https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wilhelm_scream].
All in all, I'm not saying Valve is about to cure cancer or something, but they seem aware of the issues with the current model and they appear to have a well-intentioned idea on where to go with it. It may very well all end up in a bust - I'm sure they weren't planning on Greenlight turning out the way it has - but given that it's all still in planning stage, recognizing existing issues and ideas on how to correct them without creating new ones are the best we could hope for and analysis of the elements of the new system they announce shouldn't be done without consideration of what is known of the rest of the system. High financial barrier of entry would offer some utility in keeping low production value games out, but it comes with downsides of its own, so Valve is looking into alternative solutions that more explicitly target asset flippers and creators of unplayable games. IF these systems don't work out, it would be prudent to try and replace them, but as it is we cannot assume they'll fail before they're even given a try. Not to mention, I'm somewhat puzzled why the article discusses the fee without such context, but whatever :d.