Valve Introduces New Rule for Steam Store Screenshots

Game developers and publishers on Steam Store must adhere to a new Valve policy that makes sure consumers are not deceived through unrelated screenshots.

According to the digital distribution giant, product listings on Steam can no longer use “concept art, pre-rendered cinematic stills, or images that contain awards, marketing copy, or written product descriptions”. The screenshot section of each listing needs to have actual in-game screenshots so that consumers have a fair idea of what they are purchasing.

“We haven’t been super crisp on guidelines for screenshots in the past, so we’d like to take this opportunity to clarify some rules in this space,” reads part of a message sent out to a publisher. “When the ‘screenshot’ section of a store page is used for images other than screenshots that depict the game, it can make it harder for customers to understand what the product is that they are looking at.”

As an example, the developer took its own Dota 2 game which previously had concept art and stills from promotional videos under the screenshot section. Since then, Valve has updated the story page entry to remove all unrelated shots and include only in-game screenshots.

To be clear, this does not mean that Valve is on the hunt to curb bullshots. Developers and publishers can always doctor their screenshots and fly past Valve below the radar. As a last resort, Steam users have the option of reporting a listing if the featured screenshots are unrelated or otherwise misleading.

The new screenshot policy is part of Steam’s upcoming UI overhaul which Valve is calling the “Discovery Update 2.0”. It’s scheduled to go live in a couple of weeks and focuses on ensuring that users get “to see more of what they like and less of what they are not interested in or find offensive.” On that note, store page owners are advised by Valve to indicate which of their screenshots contain potentially offensive content so that they can be filtered based on the user’s preference.

VIA PC Gamer

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The odd man in the group who hates chocolate, cheese, and having to work on Sundays.