Valve Softens Rhetoric Against Steam Competition; Bohemia Interactive Grosses USD$68m


TheGamingEconomy’s Daily Digest brings you the prevalent business stories in gaming. In today’s news: Valve softens rhetoric against Steam competition; Bohemia Interactive grosses USD$68m (£58m); and Amuka Esports acquires Incendium Gaming.

Valve softens rhetoric against Steam competition

Valve CEO and co-founder Gabe Newell has softened the company's rhetoric against competition for its Steam storefront. Writing in Edge Magazine, Newell stated that competition is "awesome for everybody" and helps stores release new features and constantly finesse their respective relationships with developers. Newell's comments come after a period of increased scrutiny of the Steam platform following the launch of rival storefronts, most notably Epic Games Store, and its revenue share model with developers.

While Newell appeared more open to general competition, he did provide a warning against stores employing anti-competitive practices, which could be interpreted as a warning against Epic Games Store's practice of aggressively pursuing platform exclusivity for third-party titles. Newell wrote, "We get a lot more freaked out not by competition, but by people trying to preclude competition. If you ask us which is scarier, it's people falling in love with Apple's model of controlling everything and having faceless bureaucrats who get to keep your product from entering the market if they don't want it to, or designing a store in a way that minimises software's value-add to experience and stuff like that."

Bohemia Interactive grosses USD$68m (£58m)

Bohemia Interactive

Bohemia Interactive has announced that it grossed USD$68m (£58m) over the course of 2019, generated from the sale of 4.5 million copies of its titles and associated DLC. The Prague-based developer, founded in 1999, released several titles throughout the year, namely online survival shooter DayZ (PlayStation 4 and Xbox One debut); free-to-play shooter Vigor; and creative platform title Ylands, as well as enjoying continued success with its legacy titles, principally Arma 3. Looking ahead to this year, Bohemia Interactive is expected to release fewer titles as it focuses on the release of its proprietary engine technology, dubbed "Enfusion", which will run future releases.

In a statement accompanying the results, Bohemia Interactive CEO Marek Španěl wrote, "2019 was successful due to years of demanding development of our games and DLCs for PC and console. Thanks to the dedication and commitment of our colleagues we were able to release more game titles in one year than ever before. This reflects in the excellent results which will help us in upcoming years to develop new game experiences."

Amuka Esports acquires Incendium Gaming

Amuka Esports

Casual esports platform Amuka Esports has acquired fighting game tournament organiser Incendium Gaming for an undisclosed sum, with the purchase aimed at expanding the former's reach across niche gaming communities. The acquisition marks the latest in a series of M&A activities by the Toronto, Ontario-based firm, having bought esports content publisher Organized Gaming and Canadian esports tournament venue Waves E-Gaming in recent months. Nor is this the only purchase of a fighting game community (FGC) organiser by Amuka Esports, given it purchased AXL Gaming in November last year.

Vince Hui, co-founder of Incendium Gaming, commented, "My whole life I’ve had a passion for fighting games and sharing that passion with friends. So when we started Incendium, the goal was always to build the best possible community that catered to our loyal fighters while creating a welcoming environment for new gamers. Being part of the Amuka Esports eco-system will give us the ability to strengthen our current line-up events and expand to new markets we weren’t able to be in before."