Back in June last year, Valve phased out Steam Greenlight as a method of managing new video game releases and replaced it with Steam Direct. It was a more hands-off and simplified process. Where as Greenlight count on Steam users deciding if your video game could launch, Steam Direct only needs forms be filled out and a recoupable $100 fee paid. However the effect this has had on video game releases ends up being big.
Valve revealed that Steam Direct is used to launch 180 video games weekly on Steam.
While that's more video games than anyone could ever play in a year, not to mention a week, the change in the rate of releases is also incredible. Prior to Greenlight introduced in August 2012, Steam was launching an average of 5 new titles a week. Prior to being replaced in June 2017, Greenlight took that total up to 70 titles a week. Just over a year on under Steam Direct and we're up to 180 a week!
With far less barriers to entry it makes good sense that the total number of releases would increase. The size of the increase reveals you just how many people out there are making video games.
Fortunately for Valve and developers, gamer numbers are growing quickly, too. Between Jan. 1 and April 30 this year, an average of 3.75 million first-time Steam purchases were made.