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Valve hit with $843 million lawsuit in UK for ‘overcharging 14 million PC gamers’

More lawsuits hit Valve over Steam issues
Last Updated on June 13, 2024
Valve slapped with 800 million dollar lawsuit
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Valve is at the forefront of yet another lawsuit this week, with the company being accused of ‘overcharging 14 million UK PC Gamers’ – according to Children’s Digital rights campaigner, Vicki Shotbolt.

This isn’t the first time the gaming giants are being sued, with numerous lawsuits landing on the laps of Valve in the past 10 years. In fact, this isn’t even the first time Valve is being sued for this particular issue, with company boss Gabe Newell being ordered to testify in person over a similar lawsuit filed by Wolfire Games back in 2021.

The new lawsuit alleges that Steam’s pre-eminence has allowed Valve to continue ‘overcharging’ its customers through market dominance. Shotbolt says ‘Steam is the biggest PC gaming platform in the world and it’s using this power to charge consumers too much for games and content’.

The founder and CEO of Parent Zone also states ‘Valve is rigging the market and taking advantage of UK gamers’ in a report covered by BBC. ‘I am bringing this claim on behalf of 14 million gamers and their parents who have been ripped off and are owed compensation. Valve must play fair and stop this unlawful conduct.’.

The claim has been filed at the Competition Appeal Tribunal, in London, claiming Valve is “shutting out” competing online games companies in the PC Gaming market.

A website dedicated to the lawsuit, Steamyouoweus, says that gamers could be compensated by up to £22 to £44.

Should Valve be worried?

Valve has faced numerous Steam-related lawsuits in the past, many of which have resulted in the brand being slapped with million dollar fines. Back in 2018, Valve was hit with a $2.4 million fine in Australia for its lack of a refund policy prior to 2015. Fast fowrard to 2023 and it got hit with another $1.73 million fine for “geo-blocking” games.

This time, the brand is looking at a whopping £656 million lawsuit, a far more daunting prospect than recent suits. That would no doubt impact any business, however, a 2023 report from VG Insights estimated Steam to have earned more than $9 billion in revenue that year alone.

It’s safe to say that Valve’s financial prospects are well covered by the lawsuit. But a half a billion pound bill would surely shake any company to some degree.

Valve’s dominance in PC gaming

The most recent studies showcase Valve’s earnings surpass $9 billion, around £7.1 billion, respectively. This figure was driven by a whopping 580 million game sales over 14,000 new titles released.

With such huge sales, Valve are able to leverage their market dominance and charge publishers ‘an excessive commission of up to 30%’.

Steam offered almost 14,000 titles in 2023, up 12.6% Year over year. From this games, 930 made over $1 million in revenue. 157 of those games made over $10 million and 20 made over $50 million.

Despite the recent lawsuit, VG Insights forecasts the company to eclipse $11.5 billion by 2028 – with the brand showing no real signs of slowing.

Charlie is the Affiliate manager for PC Guide. He has a vast understanding of most PC hardware and consumer essentials, using his knowledge to provide the best products and the biggest deals.