What's all this fracas about, then?
In a nutshell, Steam now allows mod creators to charge for their mods
.How much money are we talking about here?
- Mod creators can choose the amount. Most are running $2-$5, though joke prices of $99.99 have been seen.
- Donation links set up by modders themselves are being removed from mod pages by Valve; you go through their system to ensure the mandated split.
- Payment is split 75% / 25% for Skyrim mods, with 25% going to the creator, and 75% to Valve and Bethesda. This is one of the bigger controversies about all this business.Which games are in on this?
Bethesda has signed on with Skyrim (and presumably future Fallout/TES titles), and Garry from Garry's Mod has expressed interest as well.
.There'll still be free mods though, surely?
.Nexus has confirmed at least 40 mods have been hidden for fear of people taking their mods and rehosting them on Workshop as paid mods.
This isn't an unreasonable fear, as exactly this has happened. Some free asset creators, of whom give their content away for use in other mods, have announced they're stopping, since their work would be part of commercial mods. An additional problem is mods (free or otherwise) with dependencies on paid mods.So how will problematic content being sold be handled by Valve?
They will take down content upon being legally compelled to do so via DMCA takedown. How effective this will be is unknown, and can only be policed after the fact.What if I buy a mod and it doesn't work?
You have 24 hours to get a refund. After that:
A. Sometimes one mod may modify the same files as another mod, or a particular combination of mods may cause unexpected outcomes. If you find that mod has broken or is behaving unexpectedly, it is best to post politely on the Workshop item's page and let the mod author know the details of what you are seeing.
Yeah...What about mods that are already free? They're safe, right?
Haha, no. Some have been pulled for future monetisation, while others have stayed up with in-game popup ads to incentivise buying the paid version.Additional reading:The Valve page explaining the schemeAn informative Reddit post from Chesko, who was the first to pull a monetised mod from Steam.Fantastic Forbes overview of the situation.