Almost 200 games from developer Silicon Echo Studios have been removed from the Steam store today. The reason for this is the fact that these games are ‘fake’ in the sense that they’re low-quality games made to support trading card farming. Something that Steam and Valve are currently attempting to fight.
Each of the games in question was created with pre-made Unity assets so the developer could create them quickly. In addition to this, the games were put through the Steam Direct application together so the developer was able to avoid paying $100 for each game.
A YouTuber by the name of Sid Alpha uploaded his research on the developer to YouTube. He lists that the studio’s titles account for 10% of all games released on Steam in July and August. A grand total of 86 titles have been published in those two months.
The games in question were given away for free or in low-cost bundles. Which means they were perfect for people looking to boost their user level and resell some trading cards. It was easy to pick up bundles from Silicon Echo Studios for cheap. The developer also got a cut of all trading card sales.
Valve has released a statement to Polygon on this matter
“What we found was a set of extreme actions by this person that was negatively impacting the functionality of the store and our tools. For example, this person was mass-shipping nearly-identical products on Steam that were impacting the store’s functionality and making it harder for players interested in finding fun games to play. This developer was also abusing Steam keys and misrepresenting themselves on the Steam store.
As a result, we have removed those games from the Steam Store and ended our business relationship with them.”
Valve is making it clear that they will not tolerate fake games or those who manipulate their store tools. While this is a step in the right direction from the company, many would argue that there are hundreds of potentially fake games on Steam right now. As a result, Valve has a lot of work to do still.