Valve Corporation (also formerly known as Valve Software) is an American video game and digital distribution company headquartered in Bellevue, Washington. The company is known for the Half-Life, Counter-Strike, Portal, Day of Defeat, Team Fortress, Left 4 Dead, and Dota series, as well as for its digital distribution service Steam.
- Similar to Google Play, Valve completely refuses to apply any moderation or quality control to its digital storefront, Steam. As a result, the integrity and stability of the store have gone completely downhill and legitimate indie developers are mostly abandoning Steam en masse.
- They have rarely talked to fans before 2019, and some fans of Team Fortress 2 feel that their game has been completely abandoned.
- There have been many times when users inexplicably become unable to access their games. Most of the time, when they contact Valve's customer support, takes over two months to get the problem solved, provided they do answer.
- For a while, Valve focused on making specific Steam-themed hardware electronics, such as the Steam Link (a streaming box that streams PC games to your TV), or Steam Machines (dedicated Linux gaming PCs), but both were flops due to limited support from Valve, the low inventory (thanks to them being outsourced to other companies), and high launch prices, resulting in both being discontinued. Though, the Steam Deck (dedicated Linux gaming handheld PC) has seemed to finally break this curse, as it gathers both critical and commercial success, even despite having almost the same problems as its precursor.
- They've had many legal disputes for what they've done with other companies like Vivendi Games and later Activision Blizzard.
- A notable example is when Valve hired Abdul "IceFrog" Ismail, the lead designer of the original DotA mod for Warcraft 3 to create a sequel to be published by Valve. This leads to a lawsuit against Blizzard for the copyright of DoTA franchise.
- They were seemly are just willing to repeatedly milk the Dota series as of the release of Artifact and Dota Underlords, and now less frequently Counter-Strike: Global Offensive. Also, the updates for Team Fortress 2 are not cosmetic-oriented, and there are massive gaps in-between each big update. Luckily, the game is getting new patches and it did get a big update in 2017 as a revival, but after this big update, Valve slowly pushed out minor patches and went back to milking Dota and CS:GO. The latter game has suffered a major decline in quality and the new updates received massive backlash from some fans, yet Valve ignores that.
- They were trying too hard to become like Blizzard Entertainment in the mid to late 2010s or around 2020; Artifact, a Dota 2-based digital card game, left an extremely sour taste in the mouths of many fans (except for those who either love or don't mind card games), since the game was clear proof that Valve is milking Dota and trying to turn it into a MOBA version of World of Warcraft, which also has their own digital card game (HearthStone). And unsurprisingly after the game was released in the following time, its player count was dropping fast, down to 100 to 300 players left. Has now decided as of
- They once partnered with Bethesda Softworks to make paid mods. Bethesda was successful, though Valve was not.
- Their VAC (Valve Anti-Cheat) system is extremely weak as hackers can easily bypass them. Valve has no intention to fix the issue. This is what is causing the Bot Invasion in Casual servers in TF2, and Valve has done the bare minimum to fix it. They only seem to have rolled out a better version of their anti-cheat to CSGO and Dota 2.
- There have been a few times when Valve actively trash-talked consoles and Windows 8 as they planned to have its own digital storefront, and, ironically, their first attempt of a gaming PC (which is somewhat debated as a hybrid game console, by almost public reception), which ultimately failed due to it offered little to no difference from PC or console gamers like.
- There is very little organization within the company, and they let employees do whatever they want, which they thought would work on paper, and this was true when they were a small video game company in the 1990s to mid-2000s, as Valve Software. But, they aren't anymore, since then. This resulted in projects never doing any real progress because employees aren't focused or pressured on those projects, and has resulted in some projects, like Left 4 Dead 3, being shelved. This problem was even acknowledged by some Valve employees during Half-Life: Alyx's release, by dubbing it "the Wilderness", when referring to their lack of organizational development structure, throughout the 2010s.
- Valve Time is a phenomenon where whenever Valve gives a release date, it is almost always wrong. This has become such an issue that Valve themselves joke about it on their own official Source SDK documentation wiki. The coincident with the rapture joke under Episode 3 here was originally written by Gabe Newell himself about Team Fortress 2.
- Although occasionally, just like Nintendo, Valve gets a bit strict if there are fan games/mods that use any word related to their official IP or property titles, or use a leaked/crack source build, as its SDK bases for their mods.
- For example: Open Fortress and Team Fortress 2 Classic's downloads had to be "temporarily" suspended due to an arrangement. And, months after the suspension, the OF and TF2C devs have decided to reopen the downloads of their mods after seemly Valve has to ghost them for no good reason. Then after the announcement, Valve decreed a new rule from now on, that only exceptional mods who participated in the Steamworks program, along with using the official SDK only. This hurts modders who don't use the official SDK, over the unofficial SDK or outdated SDK over its limitations, and the last time they update the SDK, was nine years ago (2013) which runs on really outdated version of Source Engine containing some bugs that the Half-Life 2 and Portal (since 2022/Steam Deck versions), has already patched many bugs and glitches which was previously broken back when Source 2013 and SteamPipe happened.
The company is still good enough to be on the sister wiki. Click here to see the Valve page on its sister website.