Valve continues to adjust its pricing policy and recommendations. With the latest update, Steam developers will have new minimum price thresholds for currencies other than the US dollar.

New minimum allowed price on Steam for non-USD currencies must be equivalent to the $0.99 tier

What happened?

  • In a new blog post, Valve clarified that the $0.99 minimum allowed price will remain the same.
  • The main change here is that the minimum that can be entered in non-USD currencies must be “at least equivalent to Steam’s recommended currency conversion for the $0.99 USD tier.”
  • From now on, games or DLC using older, lower base prices may become unavailable for purchase in certain regions.

How will the minimum price changes affect devs on Steam?

  • The changes will primarily affect developers selling their games at or below $5 because they may not be able to discount their products as they used to (“the lowest possible transaction price is 50% off that minimum base price”).
  • So if a game is priced at $0.99 (or equivalent), devs can only discount it up to 50%. Up to 75% if the base price is $1.99, and up to 90% if the base price is $4.99.
  • Valve may also limit the discount developers can enter if their game’s base price is near to Steam’s lowest threshold to “ensure the resulting price does not fall below the minimum allowed” (e.g. due to currency fluctuations).
  • Using the Price Management Tool, developers will see a red indication next to each specific price that is below the adjusted minimum allowed. To fix this, they should select the USD price tier and apply recommended currency conversions to all regions.
  • If devs still want their game to be priced below the new minimum thresholds, they can use the Steam Microtransaction API to sell content at any price point.

Why did Steam change its minimum price thresholds?

  • “These minimum price thresholds previously aligned with our older pricing conversion recommendations,” Valve explained. “We updated those recommendations in October 2022 to adjust for some currencies drifting significantly in value over time, so today’s change aligns our minimums with those new recommendations.”
  • As a result of last year’s changes, recommended regional prices on Steam have significantly increased in certain regions. For example, recommended prices for a $59.99 game in Argentina and Turkey were up 485% and 454% respectively.
  • Valve always takes the base price in US dollars and adjusts it for other regions based on exchange rates, purchasing power parity in certain countries, and other factors.
  • So Steam has now basically adjusted its minimum allowed pricing to reflect last year’s regional price changes, as some currencies continue to weaken against the US dollar, not to mention other economic and geopolitical factors.

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