Buzzing sector has triggered short-term profit plans, industry veteran claims

Gabe Newell talks social gaming ‘IPO priorities’

Valve managing director Gabe Newell believes certain corners of the industry have become blighted by short-term business decisions as a side effect of the social and mobile gaming craze.

The outspoken games industry executive said the industry “seems to be entering into a little bit of a tech and mobile and social bubble”, generated by a “reality distortion field”.

Though he took care to not mention any company specifically, he said such companies within the social and mobile space “stop thinking about the player being the customer and instead the IPO as being the customer”.

In a podcast interview with Seven Day Cooldown, he said: “

When millions of dollars are being thrown around in a neighborhood, you see people optimising for the short term and not the long term.


We’ve been through this many times. The first time I saw something like this was on Eagle Computer [tech company which launched an IPO 1983 and went out of business three years later].

“You could just see there were a bunch of decisions that were not ‘how can I keep my customers happy for the next ten years’, and were instead ‘how can I make a giant pile of money as quick as possible and get out of my position as fast as I can.

“As long as the games industry continues to grow, we’re going to have those kinds of distortions. 

I think you end up wasting people’s time and money, and that all blows up.”

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