Valve Software has transformed its once-disastrous relationship with PlayStation, with the studio’s president now calling on developers to reward Sony for its open approach to online gaming.
In a new interview published today, Gabe Newell told Develop that Sony deserves valuable and lucrative PS3 content for integrating third-party online services within its online network.
In an uncommon move, Sony recently allowed Valve to integrate Steam within the PlayStation Network. It also has granted CCP Games the chance to unite customers with the upcoming PS3 shooter Dust 514, which connects with the PC game Eve Online.
“I think Sony will start to benefit from what it’s doing,” Newell said.
“They’ve done the scary thing and I think it’s up to us as developers to make sure Sony and its customers are rewarded.”
Steam is not available on Xbox as, despite its abundant success, Live remains a tightly enclosed online platform.
Nintendo too has shut its platform out from any third-party control, but industry speculation is that WiiU will mimic Sony’s flexible approach.
Newell said Sony’s gamble to open up its online service will ultimately pay off.
“With the release of the first Portal 2 DLC people will really see the value of Sony allowing Steam to be released on their system,” Newell said.
“I think you’ll see us pushing very hard in increasing the overall play value of Portal 2,” he added.
“I think not only us but other developers are benefiting from Sony’s approach. We and other developers have to show we’re creating value to Sony for opening up its network. We have to show them it’s a smart business move.”
The comments are indicative of an extraordinary volte-face at Valve – a studio that in the past had been unrelenting in its criticisms to coding on PS3.
Newell said it is “absolutely important” that games like Portal 2 and Dust 514 are a success on PS3.
“We need to reward Sony for making this decision. We need to prove Sony is right.”