An informative post from another indie developer, breaking down where their revenue comes from. It’s fairly obvious that the lion’s share comes from Steam.
Now, it’s clearly desirable to get your games on Steam. This data just echoes what I’ve heard repeatedly from indies, that Steam can literally multiply your income by a factor of 10. But it is also a little bit worrying that Steam so clearly dominates. Valve are good people, I feel, but I do somewhat fear them becoming the sole gatekeepers of success, at least for indies in the PC space. While I hate Origin, and I hate having to have 2 store front-end clients installed on my PC, I do actually wish that EA would create a good competitor to Steam. Competition is good for the customer, and in this case the developers ARE the customers.
And Valve, no matter how good intentioned, aren’t perfect. Wadget Eye Games, for example, the developers of the Blackwell series as well as Gemini Rue, Resonance and now Primordia, who are, along with Telltale, reviving the Adventure game genre in the public consciousness, have to go through the indie application process each and every time for their new games. Which now means getting in the Greenlight line. Despite clear past success, they are still subject to this song and dance.
Time will tell, I guess.