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Why Halo Infinite needs to Release on Steam

OP Cassandra 075

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Having Halo: MCC release on PC was the biggest jump in playerbase the Halo franchise has seen in years. The level of exposure and integration into gaming culture has skyrocketed since MCC's release on PC. A huge reason for this is that the game also released on Steam. Steam is an application that is owned by a large majority of PC gamers. This means that even in the edge case that someone who has never heard of Halo, but could be interested in playing the game, sees an advertisement or store page for Halo on Steam, they are more inclined to buy it. On Steam, you have a community of reviewers who will tell you honestly what they think about the game being reviewed, with no filters. This means that often times on Steam, reviews are trusted more than reviews on other platforms where reviewing is less popular, or even non-existent, such as the Windows Store or the Epic Games Launcher.

What Steam also has that most other platforms neglect, is active community support. You see when your friends are online, yes, but you also see on the page of the game who has been playing recently and for how much, what there achievements are, screenshots they took, and other activity associated with the game. This helps players find other players with similar playstyles to play with. Your friend has a ton of playtime, lots of screenshots, and low multiplayer ranking? Ask them if you can join them in customs next time they are on. Average multiplayer ranking with lots of achievements and playtime? Go achievement and easter egg hunting in campaign. The list goes on. Steam has support that allows the community to bond with each other and play games together, strengthening the playerbase, and adding more sales as the game stands the test of time. Another thing to note: Steam also has groups that players can create to supplement this as well.

"But Cassandra, Steam takes a cut of each sale! Game developers need their pay too! If Halo Infinite is released on the Microsoft store as an exclusive, then 343i will be able to take a higher cut!"
This argument is valid if you ignore all of the context of PC gaming at the current moment. With the rise of the Epic Games Store as well as other first party launchers, there has been continued tension between players, and often times many people dedicate themselves mainly to one platform. Players do not like "bloatware" on their computer just for a single game, and will often absolutely refuse to buy a game on any other platform besides the one they are dedicated to. The Microsoft store is deathly thin when it comes to features that connect players together, even influencing players who own the Microsoft Store version of MCC (via game pass or other means) to buy a Steam copy of the game as well just for the community features! This is incredibly noteworthy, and I personally know at least five people in my local community who have done this, and it is no secret that the Steam version of MCC is the best version. The result of this is that Steam increases sales of a game to make up for the cut taken from developers. There are benefits that comes from said cut being taken from developers as previously noted in this post (community features, achievements, marketing, trading cards, etc). And even if then if the cut is too high, then set an MSRP the Steam is priced at, and then sell the game on the Microsoft store at a "discounted price", ie, make the Steam version more expensive, players such as myself will be more then willing to pay the markup just for the features Steam offers.

Halo as a franchise already has a foot in Steam. Many Halo titles already exist on Steam such as Spartan Assault, Spartan Strike, Halo Wars, CE, 2, 3, and 4 with 343i even saying it might be possible for 5 to release on Steam with enough demand. Halo needs this release on Steam to happen for the community-- no, the franchise to stay alive. Halo is something I have held dear to my heart since the first release in 2001, and it would mean the world to me and many others if we continued this legacy on Steam. Make Halo stand the test of time, and we need to do this by making Halo as accessible as possible. Let's make this time, right now, be the time we see Halo Infinite, and all future Halo releases, on Steam!
I completely agree with your post.

I know I'm one of the people who had the game on GamePass for the Windows Store, then purchased the full MCC on Steam. I would absolutely pay a markup to own Halo on Steam instead of another store. In fact, with GamePass, I could've purchased the MCC for $32.99 instead of the full price and I almost did. However, I ended up deciding to pay the extra $7 in order to have it on Steam instead for all the community features you listed in your post.

Also, I think the argument of Steam taking a 30% cut is often one that's made with many assumptions in mind. Is 30% too large of a cut? Sure, in most cases yes absolutely. It hurts indie developers the most though. There are profit breaks for Steam from 30%, to 25% and 20% once larger games sell certain amounts of copies though. Being that Halo is such a massive franchise, 343i would have no problem making those sales goals and getting that 80/20 revenue split. To add to that, there is a reason Steam can charge that much imo. It's not as simple as Steam just being a middle man for developers to sell their digital games on PC. Steam, as you listed, has built a massively complex and intuitive community-driven platform. Implementing all those features and the updates they still continue to offer their playerbase costs time and money. They're not just taking their 30% and hiking off with it. They're always putting a large chunk of that margin back into the platform to improve and continue to innovate Steam for its players. They charge that much for a reason. I still think it should be lowered to 15% (maaaaaybe 20%), especially for indie companies, but at least Valve is investing the majority of that money back into their platform. They make damn good use of it.
You now that Halo Infinite will likely also release on Steam because it was confirmed that future xbox games title will also launch on Steam as well as Microsoft Store.
I agree, if you want your game to be as successful as it can be, you release on steam.
It's a great move for Halo. A questionable move for Xbox as a brand, at least how it's existed to date, but a great move for Halo as an IP without question.
It will be a smart move for 343 Industries if they release both Halo 5 and Halo Infinite on Steam. This will definitely create a lot more excitement for Halo fans. I am also very curious to see the rest of Microsoft games coming out on Steam. It will be awesome if Microsoft release Gears of War 1, 2, 3 and 4 on Steam.
YukiryuFR wrote:
You now that Halo Infinite will likely also release on Steam because it was confirmed that future xbox games title will also launch on Steam as well as Microsoft Store.
Then why is there no Steam branding in the trailers?
YukiryuFR wrote:
You now that Halo Infinite will likely also release on Steam because it was confirmed that future xbox games title will also launch on Steam as well as Microsoft Store.
Then why is there no Steam branding in the trailers?
I said likely not confirmed.
I just said what Xbox told about Xbox Games title that would release on windows store and steam in the future
I agree, if you want your game to be as successful as it can be, you release on steam.
No. If you want your game to be successful you make a quality product without fleecing your loyal players with loot crates, rng and overpriced in game economies. God of War, HZD and Spiderman have proven this. Steam might help sales, but if the game is poor it will bomb.
eviltedi wrote:
I agree, if you want your game to be as successful as it can be, you release on steam.
No. If you want your game to be successful you make a quality product without fleecing your loyal players with loot crates, rng and overpriced in game economies. God of War, HZD and Spiderman have proven this. Steam might help sales, but if the game is poor it will bomb.
I agree with you, steam don't make the games good it's the studio which created them that must make them good.
eviltedi wrote:
I agree, if you want your game to be as successful as it can be, you release on steam.
No. If you want your game to be successful you make a quality product without fleecing your loyal players with loot crates, rng and overpriced in game economies. God of War, HZD and Spiderman have proven this. Steam might help sales, but if the game is poor it will bomb.
Think you missed my point. Regardless of what quality your game is, if you're releasing it on PC, Steam is the best place to maximize sales, that's all I was saying.

As far as comparing Halo to those 3 games you mentioned the main difference is they are all SP only games while Halo has a huge focus on MP. If Halo was SP only we could see an MTX free game but it's MP so don't expect it. Would be incredible but there's just no way it's happening.
No, that would be bad for business, Xbox Game Pass Ultimate needs to succeed, they would most likely put it on their own Library rather than a 3rd party software. Windows is dominate, keep it all on the same platform. If you purchased it on steam, it would NOT be Xbox Playanywhere, you would have to manually install steam, sign in, and download the game, whereas on Windows, just signinto your account and it is all good to go, no 3rd party software to install.
eviltedi wrote:
I agree, if you want your game to be as successful as it can be, you release on steam.
No. If you want your game to be successful you make a quality product without fleecing your loyal players with loot crates, rng and overpriced in game economies. God of War, HZD and Spiderman have proven this. Steam might help sales, but if the game is poor it will bomb.
Think you missed my point. Regardless of what quality your game is, if you're releasing it on PC, Steam is the best place to maximize sales, that's all I was saying.

As far as comparing Halo to those 3 games you mentioned the main difference is they are all SP only games while Halo has a huge focus on MP. If Halo was SP only we could see an MTX free game but it's MP so don't expect it. Would be incredible but there's just no way it's happening.
I didn't miss anything. You stated if you want your game to be as successful as it can be, you release on steam. You mentioned nothing about PC sales, but now you've stated that I would tend agree. However the game needs to be good to be successful first and foremost imo. Yes, the games I mentioned are single player, but they sold well because they are good. Were any of them on steam ? If not that drives my point home.
YukiryuFR wrote:
YukiryuFR wrote:
You now that Halo Infinite will likely also release on Steam because it was confirmed that future xbox games title will also launch on Steam as well as Microsoft Store.
Then why is there no Steam branding in the trailers?
I said likely not confirmed.
I just said what Xbox told about Xbox Games title that would release on windows store and steam in the future
I do not want to take any chances. I would like to help show the demand for Infinite on Steam before it becomes too late.
eviltedi wrote:
eviltedi wrote:
I agree, if you want your game to be as successful as it can be, you release on steam.
No. If you want your game to be successful you make a quality product without fleecing your loyal players with loot crates, rng and overpriced in game economies. God of War, HZD and Spiderman have proven this. Steam might help sales, but if the game is poor it will bomb.
Think you missed my point. Regardless of what quality your game is, if you're releasing it on PC, Steam is the best place to maximize sales, that's all I was saying.

As far as comparing Halo to those 3 games you mentioned the main difference is they are all SP only games while Halo has a huge focus on MP. If Halo was SP only we could see an MTX free game but it's MP so don't expect it. Would be incredible but there's just no way it's happening.
I didn't miss anything. You stated if you want your game to be as successful as it can be, you release on steam. You mentioned nothing about PC sales, but now you've stated that I would tend agree. However the game needs to be good to be successful first and foremost imo. Yes, the games I mentioned are single player, but they sold well because they are good. Were any of them on steam ? If not that drives my point home.
I believe what is trying to be said here is that Steam can help high quality games be even more successful than they would have been otherwise.
eviltedi wrote:
eviltedi wrote:
I agree, if you want your game to be as successful as it can be, you release on steam.
No. If you want your game to be successful you make a quality product without fleecing your loyal players with loot crates, rng and overpriced in game economies. God of War, HZD and Spiderman have proven this. Steam might help sales, but if the game is poor it will bomb.
Think you missed my point. Regardless of what quality your game is, if you're releasing it on PC, Steam is the best place to maximize sales, that's all I was saying.

As far as comparing Halo to those 3 games you mentioned the main difference is they are all SP only games while Halo has a huge focus on MP. If Halo was SP only we could see an MTX free game but it's MP so don't expect it. Would be incredible but there's just no way it's happening.
I didn't miss anything. You stated if you want your game to be as successful as it can be, you release on steam. You mentioned nothing about PC sales, but now you've stated that I would tend agree. However the game needs to be good to be successful first and foremost imo. Yes, the games I mentioned are single player, but they sold well because they are good. Were any of them on steam ? If not that drives my point home.
I assumed that anyone who read "as successful as it can be" in my original comment would've figured that sales were part of that, along with things like exposure and population and all that good stuff. Clearly that's not the case and I suck at getting my actual point across lol, so let me rephrase.

Regardless of whatever other platforms you're on (Switch, Xbox, PS4), IF you're planning on releasing your game on PC (which 343 is doing), the best potential for success is on Steam. You can release your game on Windows Store, Epic Games Store, etc. and still be successful (successful meaning making money, having a healthy playerbase, etc.). BUT, if you don't release on Steam at all, you're limiting yourself.

Obviously if your game is on PS4 like the ones you mentioned and said games are good themselves and get good exposure it has a higher chance of being successful on that platform than if it was a bad game. I figured that was something I wouldn't even have to mention and it rings true for Xbox and Switch and whatever other platform as well.

The topic at hand was of PC and Steam so that it was I commented about. If Microsoft released Infinite on PS4 and Switch it would sell EVEN more but we're not talking about that, we're talking about how Microsoft should release on Steam when Infinite launches for PC because it'll help it be more successful than if they didn't release on Steam.

I went way more in depth there than I should've but I wanted to make my point clear. I completely agree with you that if a game is good it has a much higher chance of being successful, but that is irrelevant to the topic I was talking about.

TL;DR: I agree with you, good game = better chance at success. I was talking about if you release on PC, whether your game is good or bad, Steam increases chance of success. Two pretty common sense notions in my opinion, neither really even need to be stated.
I’m pretty certain Infinite will be coming Steam alongside every other announced Xbox Exclusive.

For Example each of the following ‘Xbox Game Studio’ published games has, or will be released on Steam
  • Gears 5
  • The Ori games
  • Grounded,
  • Tell Me Why,
  • Age of Empires Remasters
  • Gears Tactics
  • Psychonauts 2 (although this one is kind of an exception)
  • Halo MCC
Since I’m on mobile, I’m not going to go into details as to why Xbox are pushing on PC it’s just very clear and obvious that they are. However as PC gamer myself I do appreciate the effort to get Infinite on Steam.
I mean, yeah it should come out on Steam. And the Windows Store and the Epic Games Store and GOG and whatever else.
Halo can't compete with cod unless it's available on all the platform (not including switch). There was a little discussion between Xbox devs/Microsoft and PlayStation/Sony to bring halo mcc on PS4.
There was a little discussion between Xbox devs/Microsoft and PlayStation/Sony to bring halo mcc on PS4.
Do you have a link for that comment. I've always stated Halo (and other titles) should be cross platform. I'm a big supporter of this, I'd like to read more about that discussion.
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