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News Valve, Shapeways partner on 3D-printed gaming merchandise

Discussion in 'Article Discussion' started by bit-tech, 28 Sep 2017.

  1. bit-tech

    bit-tech Supreme Overlord Lover of bit-tech Administrator

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  2. d_stilgar

    d_stilgar Old School Modder

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    I have a hard time not seeing this as a cash grab.

    Valve very desperately wants to "let the community decide what is important," which really means that what they want to do is provide a platform for people to sell things, all kinds of things, and they take 10%.

    They tried to do it with paid Skyrim mods.

    They do it with community made items for TF2.

    They do it with the marketplace for trading cards, TF2, CS:GO, and other items.

    They do it with community skins for CS:GO.

    They don't want to make games anymore, not unless they see it as a place where they can farm out free labor from the masses and rake in the value they create for themselves.

    And I know that Valve has tended to be pretty hands off about licenses. Black Mesa is a recreation of HL1. Fans make and sell things and Valve doesn't get pissed off about licensing (unless people try to make a real business of it). For the most part, Valve seems to be quite generous with that sort of thing.

    But that's why this feels like a cash grab. People were making files and sharing them with the community of fans and now they just want a cut.
     
  3. Gareth Halfacree

    Gareth Halfacree WIIGII! Lover of bit-tech Administrator Super Moderator Moderator

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    Really? I think it's absolutely fantastic. I mean, anyone can now at any time make and sell A Thing based on Valve's IP, and it'll only cost 'em a 10 percent licensing fee - with no need for paperwork, lawyers, contracts, or other faff-arsing about.

    Compare and contrast with Nintendo, which will super-lawyer you into next Tuesday if you so much as say the word "Mario" on a non-monetised YouTube video.
     
  4. Guinevere

    Guinevere Mega Mom

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    I don't think it's quite like that. This is only a deal through Shapeways, so I can't make anything. I can design it, but I can only use Shapeways as my manufacturing platform.

    Shapeways isn't cheap (sure it's reasonable for the service) and the 10% licence fee comes from the total cost of the item. If something costs £40 for Shapeways to print, I sell it at £50. Valve get £5 and I get £5.

    Yes it's nice of Valve to provide one method to make something using their IP, but I'd still have to agree to their licence agreement and I doubt the licence says I own the copyright on my design - someone else could copy it, design their own version and put it up for sale at £45 and there'll be nothing I can do to stop them.

    I too see it it as money grab for them and shapeways - there's no way anything can rely on it as a way of designing and selling licensed items. It's kinda cool, and we've not seen it done before. But still...
     
  5. Gareth Halfacree

    Gareth Halfacree WIIGII! Lover of bit-tech Administrator Super Moderator Moderator

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    Yes, I meant "make" as in "design" rather than "manufacture."
    As far as I know, this isn't remotely true. I don't use Shapeways myself, but I know a few people who do; they hold the copyright on their designs and have all the usual legal protections against copycats.
     
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