The developer behind the 173 titles that Valve was forced to remove from Steam last week has released a statement.
Speaking to Caiminds.com, Silicon Echos argues that it does not feel it deceived customers by selling asset-flip games, saying that this was represented in the marketing materials for the projects.
Furthermore, the developer claims that Valve was approving its releases, even on the day that the firm terminated 173 of its games.
The studio operated under multiple names, with Valve removing all of its projects last week.
Silicon Echo also apparently has no qualms about its business model.
“We are no heroes, we have indeed sometimes been conducting our business with some practices people may call shady,” the company wrote.
“For example, creating more developer names even though they were on the same account and listed under the same publisher. This was done primarily for easier statistical tracking as we did not believe it to be a problem since all the games were publicly listed under the same publisher and there was no deception included. We did make a mistake here in the beginning by changing the names of publishers as well, but we were warned in time that this was not allowed and have changed it and made it right. Moreover, all the games on the Silicon Echo account have had the same customer support email precisely for people not to be deceived.
“We are sure a lot of people are happy because of this, but this can have an effect on every other Steam developer as well. If some of you have games released in the past that can even remotely be considered to be asset flips or even to be using any Unity assets, you must know that there is always a chance for all your games to be simply removed from the store even though you have bought the assets fair and square and did nothing illegal or wrong. This situation has completely destroyed everything we have been working for in the past 3 years and we are forced to give up game development at this point for more that one reason. Mainly because our reputation is destroyed beyond repair, but also for financial reasons. We wish we have been warned about this before, in that case we would focus on a different business plan of development. Unfortunately for us, we have been investing in Steam Direct fees for some time now thinking that our business strategy is being approved by Valve and have been buying fees on daily basis, but the moment we stopped buying them and had about 40 or them unused, our business gets terminated. Not to mention that we have just started getting our first invested fees back. It is just bad luck for us, we guess.”
The Silicon Echo case is a damning side effect of Valve's brand new Steam Direct. Since that scheme launched in June, we've been seeing in the region of 200 games a week launching onto Valve's digital storefront. All developers need to have is $100 and a semi-finished project, and that is available for sale.