For domestic gamers, ‘Steam’ is a very close platform, but the valve Corporation that operates it is still far away. Compared to other companies that relatively frequently launches games and announce related news, there are too few news. The rumors sound everywhere, but it is inevitable that there are more questions.
Game Mecca has been presenting the Steam Deck domestic launch and visited the Valve headquarters in Seattle and has the opportunity to listen to the company’s culture, management policy, and steam policy. I met with Lawrence and Valve’s seventh-year-old engineer Pierre Loop Griffis, who have been working for 11 years at the valve.
There are many questions about the horizontal company structure unique to the valve. First of all, I would appreciate it if you answered some questions.
Q. There is a title, but it has no significant meaning except the boss and executive = no
Lawrence Miss (hereinafter referred to as Lawrence): There is no title in the first place. Only when you do a project, there is no position or position called. This is the most different part of other companies. There is only a name on the business card. Regardless of your career, you can be a representative of a project, you can be a junior, or you can work in various fields, so there is no specific title. He even does a project and does something else.
Pierre Loop Griffis (Pierre): Developers may participate in packaging design, and may have to write down press releases. After all, one person does not distinguish because he does a variety of things.
Q. If you have anything to say to the boss, Gabe Newwell, you can just go and say = Yes
Q. In order to participate in the project, an employee asks you to go directly to the project, or collect people to create a project = Yes
Lawrence: If I think it’s helpful, I can ask and participate. In some cases, they may go to the next person who is in the project, throw a one or two advice, and make a name in the project.
Q. If you don’t like it while the employee proceeds with the project, you can switch to another project = Yes
Q. It has been 25 years since the valve has been established, and what has changed so far, and what has not changed?
Pierre: There was a big change for nearly 10 years. It is that we have focused on developing hardware. I brought a lot of hardware developers from the outside, and the office also changed a lot. Not only the working space, but also the parts and experiences of visitors have changed somewhat. The company that made the game has been selling the game, and now I have made hardware. If there is only one change in the meantime, it is the fact that we are making games.
Q. What was the best thing about working for a valve?
Pierre: The best thing is that even if you do engineering, you can learn by helping other fields, not just that field. It was very good for various fields to coordinate as we combined each team.
Lawrence: It was very exciting to realize the company’s horizontal structure in the process of helping each other and working together.
Pierre: This structure takes a long time to conclude when decisions are made. This is because the opinions of each team have the same weight regardless of what they do. If this part is difficult, it may be a difficult part.
Q. There are a few negative words including Valve Time. What do you think about this?
Lawrence: I think it’s getting better in many parts. In particular, Steam Deck is making a lot of effort to communicate. In the case of ‘valve time’, after all the preparations are made and released, it will continue to be delayed. Do not make an appointment until the end of the perfect release. It’s better for consumers to get good things late, don’t prefer to receive bad things early.
** Q. Of the various platforms, Steam is steadily insisting on a 7-3 fee. There is a controversy over monopoly, and I think it will work against the competitiveness.
Pierre: Actually, it’s not completely 7 to 3. Products with high sales or profitable products are reduced. In addition, there are also many benefits provided only by Steam. It also provides marketing and language translation and free production tools. Recently, I also support creative yards and streaming services, and I think there is no big problem in the fee itself because I think it provides more than just receiving and selling games, such as creating new servers in each country.
Lawrence: I think that the accessibility has increased because of the recent steam decks. There are so many users and products, and the number of users is exceeded every year.
Q. Do you have any plans to adjust the revenue distribution structure of Steam?
** Lawrence: As mentioned above, we have a policy that already adjusts it according to profits.
Q. There are users who exploit a two-hour refund system, and many of the damage are played by short indie games. Do you want to use a policy that applies a different time to apply refund?
Pierre: We are always checking users who use it. I am also thinking about how to get rid of this problem. However, at this time, this policy is maintained by thinking that it is good for both consumers and developers.
Q. Do you know about the recent censorship of ‘ORC Massage’ in Korea? If you know, what do you think about the various porn games posted on Steam? Will you maintain the same key as it is now?
Pierre: Of course I know, and I was in contact with Korea, so I had to take such measures. Steam first prioritizes the regulations and laws of each country. Our goal is to give all the products to all users who use Steam, which can only be followed if it is not in Korean court.
Lawrence: Basically, it aims to inform and choose all games to consumers, and it is important to provide a lined filter in a game that is a tastes and problems. In fact, Steam users may not see information or games that they don’t want to know.
Q. I wonder if there is a plan to establish a branch in Korea.
Lawrence: I tried before that, but the results were not good. In fact, the way of working on the valve is very unusual. In order to maintain this method as much as possible, all employees had to be in one place. It was concluded that it would be difficult to communicate when branching was made, and it was difficult to maintain the way. Currently, all employees are working together in this building, and I will continue to do so.
Q. Recently, do you know about Korea’s deliberation regulations and autonomous deliberation regulations? If you know, do you want to join here?
Lawrence: Personally, I don’t know, but lawyers know about this and discuss how to respond.
Q. I want to ask about the game produced by the valve. Are there any games and new works that are being developed among other IPs other than Dota, such as counter strikes, portals, and half-life?
Lawrence: We are always making games, but I have nothing to say today.
Q. How is Half Life X currently being developed? Will it be a game to replace Half Life 3?
Lawrence: is the same. Obviously we make a game, but there’s nothing special.