Newell: 'Premature Monetization Is The Root Of All Evil'

In a new Gamasutra feature interview, Valve co-founder Gabe Newell discussed the future plans for monetization of upcoming Dota 2, noting that the company is
In a new Gamasutra feature interview, Valve co-founder Gabe Newell discussed the future plans for upcoming Dota 2's business model, noting that the company is more concerned about making sure the game is accepted by players. "The primary focus for us at this point is not worrying about monetization, and it's instead worrying about getting the game right," he explained. "So we started with a group of IceFrog's [original Dota developer] testers that he's worked with for all the different versions, and sort of got it to a point where we'd stopped making them crazy with all of the dumb things that we had done." He continued, "The International [tournament at this month's Gamescom] is sort of the next step of that process. It's like, this is a very tough audience; there are a bunch of clear technology pieces and server pieces we have to get done. And the phase after that is, there's going to be an invitation beta, and then after that there's going to be an open beta." "But our focus is really much on building something that's cool, and then we'll worry about monetization. So we're not going to worry about that until later. Premature monetization is the root of all evil," he said. When asked whether he believed being aware of your monetization design was important during the game design period, Newell responded, "I think not sucking is way more of an important thing to pay attention to first." "I think every gamer can point to shipping too early, or sucking, as being a way more dominant story in our industry than, 'Oh, it was slightly cumbersome to give the company money.' I mean look at Minecraft, right? Notch wasn't thinking through his incredibly precise monetization strategy." The full interview can be found now, live on Gamasutra.

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