Steam Sued for $837 Million: Are You Overpaying for PC Games?

14 June 2024 at 16:10 in Gaming News with 3 comments
Steam lawsuit

A British digital children’s rights activist has sued Valve, specifically Steam, for exploiting their market dominance to keep game prices high. Learn all about this lawsuit here.

Key Points of the Lawsuit

  • Steam has been sued by Vicki Shotbolt for 837 million dollars.
  • The lawsuit concerns market dominance and resulting prices.
  • The main issue raised is Steam’s 30% commission on sales.

Steam Sued for 837 Million Dollars

Valve’s Steam has been sued for 837 million dollars by British digital children’s rights activist Vicki Shotbolt. The lawsuit cites excessively high prices set by Steam according to Vicki. She aims to rally local gamers to support a class-action lawsuit.

Shotbolt’s team stated on their lawsuit website that they believe Valve engages in unfair competition regarding PC games and in-game content. This allegedly led many British customers to overpay for these products. As Valve is the largest digital marketplace for PC games, they can allegedly raise prices as they wish, affecting 14 million players in the UK alone.

Steam lawsuit

Vicki is seeking compensation ranging from £22 to £44 ($28 to $56) for each UK player. The primary evidence in this lawsuit is Steam’s 30% commission on sales, which Vicki and others argue is excessive and could lead developers to raise prices.

It is also claimed that this prevents developers from selling games at lower prices, as it would decrease their profit margins. Additionally, they state that “Valve Corporation violates competition law by imposing price restrictions on games sold on Steam,” a statement which may require closer scrutiny, as developers have the freedom to set their own game prices, albeit with reduced profits if prices are low, which would still be the case even without the 30% rule.

Valve has not yet responded to the lawsuit, and it remains uncertain whether they will. Shotbolt’s website mentions that it could take years for the lawsuit to reach a conclusion, so the outcome remains to be seen.


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By Kilian Kilian

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