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Valve sued for allegedly overcharging 14 million UK Steam players

The Competition Appeal Tribunal claims Valve's 30 percent revenue cut from game purchases lets it hold a monopoly and breach the UK's competition law.

Justin Carter, Contributing Editor

June 12, 2024

1 Min Read
Logo for game storefront Steam.
Image via Valve.

A £656 million (or $841.09 million) lawsuit has been filed by the Competition Appeal Tribunal in London against Valve. The developer is accused of using Steam to overcharge 14 million players across the UK.

Per BBC, Valve is accused of demanding publishers to sign up to price parity obligations, which keep games from being sold on other platforms at cheaper prices. Vicki Shotbolt, a digital rights campaigner, also highlighted Steam's "excessive commission of up to 30 percent."

In her words, that 30 percent means players "pay too much for purchasing PC games and add-on content." Shotbolt has previously accused Valve of breaching UK competition law and hopes to "get people back what they're owed."

Valve has previously been criticized for the 30 percent revenue it takes from game purchases. More often, that criticism (both vocal and legal) has come from developers, and it has allowed Epic Games to create its own programs to give studios a greater cut.

Similar concerns have been raised about Steam's monopoly on the PC game market. In her statement, Shotbolt alleged that Valve was "rigging the market and taking advantage of UK players."

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About the Author(s)

Justin Carter

Contributing Editor, GameDeveloper.com

A Kansas City, MO native, Justin Carter has written for numerous sites including IGN, Polygon, and SyFy Wire. In addition to Game Developer, his writing can be found at io9 over on Gizmodo. Don't ask him about how much gum he's had, because the answer will be more than he's willing to admit.

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