[Column] General: Paid Mods Are Likely to Return

SBFordSBFord Associate Editor - News ManagerThe CitadelMMORPG.COM Staff LegendaryPosts: 25,421

Here on the Internet, we love a good debacle. This weekend, the most beloved gaming retailer in the world teamed up with the world’s most beloved RPG publisher to collectively “piss off the internet”. Valve and Bethesda trying to monetize Skyrim mods? It’s on hold for now but paid modding is far from dead.

Read more of Christopher Coke's The RPG Files: Paid Mods Are Likely to Return.

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Comments

  • NetspookNetspook OsloMember UncommonPosts: 1,570

    The two issues as I see it, are:

     

    1. The low share for the mod creators - getting only 25% while Valve and Bethesda grabs the rest (37.5% each). The creators should have AT LEAST 70% of the Income.

     

    2. The way a mod creator could use others work to earn money, without permission, and without sharing the profit.

     

    Beyond that, I thinks paying for good mods is fair, at least if the price is right.

     
  • VrikaVrika FinlandMember RarePosts: 4,128
    Originally posted by Netspook
    The two issues as I see it, are: 2. The way a mod creator could use others work to earn money, without permission, and without sharing the profit.

    I think this will be much less an issue if they release the paid modding together with some new game, where modders will know of the rules and possible issues even before they start work on the mod.

    There will probably still be problems and some abuse, but if modders know what they're getting into before starting to mod they're much more likely to accept the problems that come with the system.

     
  • TsaboHavocTsaboHavoc PinheiralMember UncommonPosts: 435

    "the more i see, the more i dont want to see"

    this was a pretty low move from bethesda/steam.

  • SatyrosSatyros Member UncommonPosts: 156

    They did a good thing, but in a shallow, half-arsed way. So it completely backfired.

    Had they invested the proper time and planning in this, they would have changed the industry.

  • TsaboHavocTsaboHavoc PinheiralMember UncommonPosts: 435

    from shadofx on reddit, this guy nailed imo

    "Well mods like SkyUI cost a dollar and the majority of that should go to the modder.

    It makes no sense to reward Bethesda for designing a horrible UI.

    What's stopping them from releasing a new game with numerous bugs and little content and just wait for the modders to fix things? Make bank twice for less effort?

    EDIT: Exaggerating of course. The point is now Bethesda doesn't need to fix their bugs, their fans will do it for them and they'll get paid more than before. Hell, Bethesda should be paying the modders, not the other way around."

     

     

  • AlverantAlverant Wheaton, ILMember RarePosts: 905
    When you charge for something you make an implicit contract that what you're selling works and won't mess up the rest of the game. Value doesn't have much in terms of quality control so it shouldn't take part in this contract. Mods should be between the modder and the user period. Value needs to keep its sticky fingers out of it. If it wants the money, it needs to accept the responsibility first.
  • Solar_ProphetSolar_Prophet Columbus, OHMember RarePosts: 1,685
    Originally posted by Netspook
    The two issues as I see it, are:   1. The low share for the mod creators - getting only 25% while Valve and Bethesda grabs the rest (37.5% each). The creators should have AT LEAST 70% of the Income.   2. The way a mod creator could use others work to earn money, without permission, and without sharing the profit.   Beyond that, I thinks paying for good mods is fair, at least if the price is right.  

    Wait, what? I understand Valve taking a chunk to cover costs such as bandwidth and transaction processing, but why the hell should Bethesda get a cut? Their costs were covered by the initial purchase of the game. They made their money at time of sale, and just the thought that they should get anything else is idiotic. 

    It's like giving Chevrolet a third of the profits from the sale of a used vehicle. Utter nonsense. 

    AN' DERE AIN'T NO SUCH FING AS ENUFF DAKKA, YA GROT! Enuff'z more than ya got an' less than too much an' there ain't no such fing as too much dakka. Say dere is, and me Squiggoff'z eatin' tonight!


    We are born of the blood. Made men by the blood. Undone by the blood. Our eyes are yet to open. FEAR THE OLD BLOOD. 


  • immodiumimmodium ManchesterMember RarePosts: 2,302
    Another issue is that a mod creator can cease to upgrade his mod for newer versions of a game rendering them unplayable.

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  • SovrathSovrath Boston Area, MAMember LegendaryPosts: 22,856
    Originally posted by Netspook
    The two issues as I see it, are:   1. The low share for the mod creators - getting only 25% while Valve and Bethesda grabs the rest (37.5% each). The creators should have AT LEAST 70% of the Income.   2. The way a mod creator could use others work to earn money, without permission, and without sharing the profit.   Beyond that, I thinks paying for good mods is fair, at least if the price is right.  

    As far  as your first point "no they shouldn't". 70%? Rarely do you get that in any creative field. They didn't create the game and they didn't create the "store".

    The highest I would say is just split the "pot" in thirds.

    As far as your second point, this was changed after the first discovery that it was an issue.




  • VrikaVrika FinlandMember RarePosts: 4,128
    Originally posted by immodium
    Another issue is that a mod creator can cease to upgrade his mod for newer versions of a game rendering them unplayable.

    Buyer of the mod would always have the option to not update to newer version of the game.

     
  • LheiahLheiah Winters, CAMember UncommonPosts: 161
    They will iron things out over time. Modders being able to seek compensation can only be a good thing for players not wanting a hand out, since more experienced individuals will then be willing to devote their time into it. I'm pretty sure most folks with marketable skills pursue compensation for their time and effort, if available under the law.
     
  • immodiumimmodium ManchesterMember RarePosts: 2,302
    Originally posted by Vrika
    Originally posted by immodium
    Another issue is that a mod creator can cease to upgrade his mod for newer versions of a game rendering them unplayable.

    Buyer of the mod would always have the option to not update to newer version of the game.

    Or purchase DLC.

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  • IselinIselin Vancouver, BCMember LegendaryPosts: 9,908

    Like anything in the world, it's all in how you handle it.

     

    If Bethesda wants modders to get recognition and $ for their mods, they should purchase them from the modder themselves for whatever price they agree to and then sell "Official Bethesda-vetted" mods or mod packs under their own name. Then we just have Valve and Bethesda to deal with if any problems arise.

     

    They can happily co-exist with free mods from people who may not want to sell theirs and you use those knowing there may be bugs and issues down the road.

    When you come to a fork on the road, take it.
    You can observe a lot by just watching.
    No one goes there nowadays, it's too crowded.

    -- Yogi --
  • FdzzaiglFdzzaigl Somewhere in nowhereMember UncommonPosts: 2,433

    It won't work.

    Aside from all the arguments about whether or not modders deserve the money or not, doing stuff like this will simply lead to a community abandoning mods.

    Not every game gets modded extensively, even if those games make it easy to do so it doesn't mean that a community will spring up around it to get the modding going.

    Paid mods are not a community-driven addition, they are a "top to bottom" affair instead. It's Valve and Bethesda pushing this.

    The barriers it creates between the community are already visible in just a few mere days of having this pushed into Skyrim. I don't blame modders who got 100K+ downloads on their mods thinking they could make cash for their hard work. Ultimately it wouldn't happen anyway, because there would be no more community to support it; or it would move elsewere.

    Just think about it: you can have 255 mods installed in Skyrim, and many more with merges. Even if only 1/3rd of the mods became paid on a 300 mod game, for an average of $1/mod, that would still be 100 dollars worth of entry money to get a heavily modified game. That's like 4 times as much what the game itself is going for nowadays.

    Feel free to use my referral link for SW:TOR if you want to test out the game. You'll get some special unlocks!

  • SiysrrilSiysrril San JoseMember UncommonPosts: 7

    The only good thing that I've learn from the internet is that you must take everything that is said or done with a grain of salt, doesn't matter if it's media's coverage-info or whether is a company's  move-work

    If you are willing to spend some time listening to a great "video-podcast" in which to many truths are said, check it out. 

    https://youtu.be/5aavBAplp5A

    I really recommend listening the whole podcast, it's very informative.

    The podcast is from TotalBiscuit, The Cynical Brit.

     

    PD: The podcast it's a bit lengthy 1:51:38 but it's completely worth listening.

  • AlbatroesAlbatroes Member EpicPosts: 3,407
    Paid mods requires too much attention that developers and steam are probably not willing to give for it to work properly. Edit: Poster above me had the video I posted.
  • WizardryWizardry Ontario, CanadaMember EpicPosts: 12,975

    Moral of the story?

    Just like game releases of late,when there is money to be made,everything is rushed.

    Never forget 3 mile Island and never trust a government official or company spokesman.

  • MykellMykell MackayMember UncommonPosts: 679

    Games are going free to play and you need to buy mods. It really is bizarro world.

     

    How on earth are people going to distinguish between actual modders and scammers wanting to make a quick buck? It would be impossible for Steam to police this if it was large scale. Will Steam refund money from scams? Will popular modders have the resources to protect themselves from scammers going after their identities?

     

    How about a modder releasing a really popular mod cheap (say $1) and then after a few updates when most of a community is using it he releases an updated version that now costs $10 or even $50.

  • Slapshot1188Slapshot1188 Boca Raton, FLMember EpicPosts: 7,186

    Am I the only one who took this to mean paid moderators for the site? 

     

    :)

     

    "I should point out that no other company has shipped out a beta on a disc before this." - Official Mortal Online Lead Community Moderator

    Starvault's reponse to criticism related to having a handful of players as the official "test" team for a supposed MMO: "We've just have another 10ish folk kind enough to voulenteer added tot the test team" (SIC) This explains much about the state of the game :-)

  • patient32patient32 GlasgowMember UncommonPosts: 96

    I think it's a good idea, if they work it out fairly for all involved.

    Why shouldn't someone be paid for their hard work and maybe it'll inspire a better standard of mod.

     

    Unfortunately,  the internet generation tend to be rather thievish. They waffle on about "modern business models"... But what they mean is, they don't want to pay for things. They want to download their movies and games and books and everything else for free and they also expect a high-standard too. They want people to work hard, creating high quality content for them and give it away for free - and they don't want commercials either. They want their thieving to go uninterrupted.

    "It's like a finger pointing away to the moon... Don't concentrate on the finger or you'll miss all the heavenly glory" (Bruce Lee)

    (Insert your favourite mmo here): ......And behold, a pale horse.... And a million hellishly bad mmos followed with it.

  • RobbgobbRobbgobb Dallas, TXMember UncommonPosts: 531

    Here is a question that I have.

     

    What about mods that fix issues with playability with games that have bugs and the devs have not fixed? I buy a game then have to go spend more money to make the game work right does not seem like something I want to do.

  • ArChWindArChWind Some Place, WIMember UncommonPosts: 1,266

    I all honesty the main mods (both (Oblivion and Skyrim) were to fix the bad things wrong with the game at release. There are horrible bugs that are actually show stoppers or incomplete designs that needed attention to make the game enjoyable beyond the first run through. Many of the side quests would bug out and are not complete.

    Infinite loading screens and CDTs due to bad data make it fun NOT.

    Now they can release broken stuff knowing the community will fix it for them?

    I'll pass on it in the future if they go this route.

  • MoiraeMoirae New Orleans, LAMember RarePosts: 3,219

    I don't doubt mods will become paid but everything that they did was wrong here.

     

    The 75% profit margin for one. That's robbery. A developer should be paid for their work sure, but 75% is robbing the mod creators of their money. If they are going to do that, I guarantee that moderators will just create their own paid sites. 

     

    The second thing is that mods for The Sims have been  around since the very first iteration of the game over ten years ago. Some sites do have a "pay" or "subscription" option. Over the years, the creators have learned that it doesn't work the way they want it to. EA themselves used this method with the Sims 3, and though the players bought the items, they were livid at the sheer cost of each item and felt it was wrong. EA decided to do away with this with Sims 4 (probably the only bright thing they have done) as it just required far too much work to make sure that all the mods weren't filled with viruses, and were PG in nature, plus the cost associated with having to develop new items was monumental.

     

    Also this "if a mod belongs to someone else and they don't agree with paid mods, you can still use it in your mod" is wrong in so many ways, there aren't even words. It's stealing someone elses work to make a profit on it. Free or not, that doesn't work. They need to establish rules that understand that the originator of the mod, paid or not, has the rights to the mod and how it is used. 

     

    They really screwed this up, and they screwed it up very bad. Mods are a labor of love, and the game companies do not have the right to make a profit from them. They already made a profit. They are using this as a way to make sure they don't have to pay someone to make things they should be making. It's not right. 

  • IkedaIkeda Largo, FLMember RarePosts: 2,606

    I love how everyone is ignoring the even more important issues of payouts.  So the developer of the mod's gets 25% according to the old deal.  They THEN had to sell enough to make $100 or they wouldn't get a payout.

     

    i.e.  If they listed their mod for a buck.  They'd have to sell 400 mods to get $100.

    Further... if they sold 399 mods....

    They wouldn't get their money and Valve would keep not only the first 300 bucks but the other 99 because they didn't reach the threshold for payment.

    I didn't delve further to determine if this is EVERY single time... or only after the first... still a crummy deal.

  • MoiraeMoirae New Orleans, LAMember RarePosts: 3,219
    Originally posted by Ikeda
    I love how everyone is ignoring the even more important issues of payouts.  So the developer of the mod's gets 25% according to the old deal.  They THEN had to sell enough to make $100 or they wouldn't get a payout.   i.e.  If they listed their mod for a buck.  They'd have to sell 400 mods to get $100. Further... if they sold 399 mods.... They wouldn't get their money and Valve would keep not only the first 300 bucks but the other 99 because they didn't reach the threshold for payment. I didn't delve further to determine if this is EVERY single time... or only after the first... still a crummy deal.

    Oh holy crap, I didn't realize that part. So its even worse than I thought. 

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