So finally Valve have done… well “something” to the store and rolled out a massive update. Does it add tabs? Well no. The ability to hide games you own? Nope. So it seems that Valve are still resisting the blatantly obvious.
However they have added one interesting feature, which is “Curators”. Basically you can recommend games to people on the store and gain a following. Of course, on day 1 the immediate problem with the system is obvious. You don’t gain a following by curating, you curate because you have a following.
Total Biscuit is straight to number 1 and this is where you can already see where it is all going to go. Want to get on Total Biscuit’s list? Well you would have to ask very nicely as a developer. There might even be other methods to get featured down the track…. Even if people don’t stoop to that, it is certainly a nice way to appear on every game page…complete with a link to your youtube video.
Once people are making money from it? You can bet larger groups will get together to start gaming the system. Want a couple of thousand fake followers? Sure that can be arranged to push you onto the front page. From there you can sit back and pick and choose games according to their “relative merits”.
Then of course you have the problem of “real groups” like NeoGAF that have recommendations from officers. While I will not call the selection of games particularly crap, you have to wonder how useful it is. Metal Gear Rising alongside Table Top Simulator? Well of course because… they are two games.
Why Valve can’t just hire somebody to curate the store themselves is beyond me. They could even add proper tags and categories! It doesn’t cut out the potential for hi-jinks, but at least it is controlled by Valve themselves and they own the store after all. As it stands, you just know this is going to be abused.
Oh and you can’t avoid it either…because if somebody has followers their opinion matters.
It would be easy to improve too. Letting you “not recommend” a game for a start, to say it is crap. But of course we couldn’t have youtube celebrities doing that, so it will never happen. How about categorising games ourselves as curators? Apparently not, even though it would make the feature useful.
I guess the blue colour is ok though.
But hey, I might as well join the fun right? Check out my new Curated list “Boring as Batshit” games. From Skyrim to Borderlands to Borderlands 2, this is a carefully curated list of games you should never, ever, bother playing.