Steam Boots Blockchain-Based Video Games From Its Platform

The company behind Steam updated its rules and guidelines to prohibit applications that issue or allow cryptocurrencies or NFTs to be exchanged.

Oct 15, 2021 at 10:07 p.m. UTC
Updated Oct 18, 2021 at 3:43 p.m. UTC

Online gaming giant Steam is kicking blockchain-based video games off its platform.

  • Valve, the company behind Steam, updated its rules and guidelines yesterday to note that “applications built on blockchain technology that issue or allow exchange of cryptocurrencies or NFTs” won’t be allowed to be published on its platform.
  • SpacePirate Games, the creators behind Age of Rust, a popular sci-fi adventure game where players hunt for non-fungible tokens (NFTs) and bitcoin rewards, took to Twitter on Thursday to share the news that its game would be removed from Steam’s platform.
  • “Steam’s point of view is that items have value and they don’t allow items that can have real-world value on their platform,” the creators explained in a tweet.
  • “While there are still questions concerning regulations and consumer protections for trading NFTs, it’s a shame Steam isn’t willing to take a progressive stance and become a leader in the space that could help legitimize quality projects,” Chris Gonsalves, CEO of blockchain-based eSports tournament platform Community Gaming.
  • “This will further pave the way for competitors like the Epic Games Store, or emerging distribution platforms, to disrupt Steam and build compliant features for trading digital assets,” Gonsalves said.
  • Steam didn’t immediately respond to CoinDesk’s request for comment.
  • Tim Sweeney, CEO of Valve rival Epic Games, said in a tweet that Epic would “welcome games that make use of blockchain tech provided they follow the relevant laws, disclose their terms, and are age-rated by an appropriate group.”

UPDATE: (Oct. 15, 00:48 UTC): Updates with Epic Games CEO tweet.

UPDATE: (Oct. 18, 15:42 UTC): Updates with quotes from Chris Gonsalves in fourth and fifth bullet points..

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Cheyenne Ligon is a CoinDesk news reporter with a focus on crypto regulation and policy.