well indies aren’t going anywhere so it’s not the indiepocalypse
however steam as a tool for exposure just doesn’t exist anymore. the time where simply appearing on steam would make a game sell 10k copies are long gone, and now having your game on steam is almost as meaningful as having your own website as far as discovery goes.
so I agree. unless you can gain some massive traction on social media and build a big fanbase beforehand, or you can pour a lot of money into marketing… you better make games for passion and not for money
In 2011, only about 300 games were released on Steam, 400 in 2012 and 500 in 2013. This is growth, but it’s far from outrageous - it’s not even two per day, which means a list of 20 new releases still encompasses everything from this week.
The Greenlight deluge arrived in 2014, with 1800 games, 3000 in 2015, 4000 in 2016, over 7500 when they opened the floodgates in 2017, and over 9,000 last year (PCGamer / SteamSpy’s numbers don’t include games that have since been removed from sale).
If you released a game in 2018, there’s a good chance it never even saw the store page, leaving the top 20 new releases in hours and being pushed to the top 100 within a few days.
25+ games per day doesn’t benefit anyone. It’s totally useless for consumers as there’s effectively no way for anyone to keep up with that. It doesn’t benefit developers because visibility is so low that the storefront and discovery systems are totally ineffective. This is without even considering that the woefully low quality bar actively drives many potential customers increasingly away from Steam.
I think part of the problem is trading cards. It encourages devs to make free shovelware that bots play to earn the cards and sell, so the devs, bots and Valve get a cut. Get rid of those, and I’d love to see how many games Steam have then.