Valve on Thursday rolled out a new Steam Workshop feature that lets people charge for their mods. The program launches today with Bethesda’s popular role-playing game while other supported titles will be announced in the coming weeks.
As part of the new program, anyone now has the opportunity to list their creations–mods, items, or maps–at whatever price they want (they can even change prices after release), or they can offer them for free just like before. And per the , anyone not satisfied with their purchase can , provided they file their refund request within 24 hours.
Steam users have had the ability to sell their items through the Steam Workshop for years now–creators have even doing so–but this was limited to Valve games like and, among others. Only in January this year did Valve to open this up to third-party games.
The difference here that Skyrim is the first game with an open market–neither Bethesda nor Valve will have a hand in determining pricing or curation.
In its own statement, Valve’s Tom Bui said: “User-generated content is an increasingly significant component of many games, and opening new avenues to help financially support those contributors via Steam Workshop will help drive the level of UGC to new heights.”
As for why Valve is launching the new program with Skyrim, it might have something to do with the enduring popularity of the game and its devoted () players. There are currently more than 24,000 free Skyrim mods available in the game’s Steam Workshop page, and these have seen more than 170 million downloads to date, Valve said. It will be up to the creators of these mods to determine if they want to keep them available for free or set a price for them.
“Modding has been important to all our games for such a long time,” Bethesda . “We try to create worlds that come alive and you can make your own, but it’s in modding where it truly does. Thanks again for all your incredible support over the years. We hope steps like this breathe new life into Skyrim for everyone.”
You can see all the available paid (and free) Skyim mods . More information about the new Steam Workshop paid mod functionality, including a comprehensive FAQ, is .
In conjunction with this news, Bethesda has announced that it’s updated the –the game’s free mod tools–with new features aimed at supporting the new paid mods. This includes things like the ability to upload master files, the removal of filesize limit restrictions, and more.
Not all Skyrim players are jumping for joy at the news that people can now charge for mods, however. One Steam user in the Skyrim forums, “Charging for a mod is wrong and should not be done.” Someone else : “Beyond ****ed up, Gaben has reached a new low.”
For its part, Valve says: “By paying for mods and supporting the people that made them, you enable those artists and creators to continue working on their mods and inspire new modders to try their hand in creating new, higher quality items and experiences.”
What do you think about paid mods on Steam? Let us know in the comments below!