Before Tripwire left the PC Gamer Show set last week, we wanted to get their thoughts on how Steam has changed over the past decade. Being one of the first third-party developers to distribute on Steam when it released Red Orchestra: Ostfront 41-45 in 2006 means that Tripwire has had one of the longest relationships with digital distribution on PC.
"I feel a little bad for newer independent developers coming out because it's not going to be as easy for them to get people's attention as it was for us," said Tripwire president John Gibson. "It's still possible to make it, it's just a little harder to get noticed."
Although it's a more crowded marketplace, Gibson sees Steam's growth as a chance to reach more people, not as competition. "When we put out Red Orchestra 1, I think concurrent player counts [across Steam] were like 1.2 million. And I think there was maybe 15 million people on Steam. Now they just hit 9 million peak concurrent players, there's over 80 million people. So I look at that not as I'm worrying about reaching people, but 'Wow, the audience has grown.'
"In 2005 when we first started talking to Valve, everyone was beating the drum: 'PC gaming is dead, PC gaming is dead.' And now it's like, wow, 80 million people on Steam, it's this huge platform... I look at it as a huge opportunity. I think that's great. You've got emerging technologies like VR... maybe it's going to be the next big thing, maybe it's not, but it seems really exciting. It might be something that pushes PC gaming even to another level," said Gibson. "I think it's a second golden age for PC gaming right now."
Watch the interview excerpt in the video above.