Judge dismisses antitrust lawsuit against Valve

Wolfire Games filed a lawsuit in April, alleging that Steam suppressed competition and charged excessive fees.

In April, Overgrowth developer Wolfire Games filed an antitrust lawsuit against Valve, alleging that Steam's dominance of the PC games market enabled it to get an "extraordinarily high cut" from sales through its store. Valve responded in July, saying that Wolfire's complaint did not meet "the most fundamental requirements of an antitrust suit" and, as a result, asked the judge to dismiss the case. In a ruling filed today, the judge in the case agreed with Valve.

The ruling, available in full at CourtListener, says Wolfire's case falls short on two separate points. First, the allegation that Valve illegally linked the Steam store to the platform – essentially using Steam's near-monopoly as a library, initiator, and social media platform to force people to buy games via the Steam store – is denied because the allegations in the lawsuit are that the Steam platform and storefront it actually claims to be “a single product in the integrated gaming platform and transaction market”.

Wolfire's case also argues that Valve used its near monopoly to charge vendors an excessive 30% fee, which would not be sustainable in a competitive market. This claim sparked some interesting conversations earlier this year, but the judge dismissed the argument, stating that Valve's decision has not changed throughout Steam's history, even as other online stores come and go that demand lower percentages.

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Sercan Erzincanli
The Gamer is the manager of our Station Media and TGS Pano platforms. It also produces entertainment and gaming content for TGS. You can follow his social media.

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