Valve’s approval process have long been subject to criticism, claiming it is very hard for indie developers to get their games released on Steam. Today valve announced the release of Steam Greenlight. It is scheduled for release August 30 (keep in mind though, that this is Valve-time, so the release date will likely be some time later).
This will allow publishers to post information, videos and screenshots from games. The public can then give feedback, and vote on the games they want to be released on Steam. If a game gets enough votes, Valve will release it. This will allow a lot of indie games to circumvent Valve’s approval process. Recently Valve denied the 3DS success “Mutant Mudds” a steam release, and also the hugely successful “Aquaria” was first refused.
Hopefully this new approval system will make it easier for indie developers to get their games out on Steam. In the long run this may lead to more great games to be developed, as it will make it easier to have games published on Steam, which have a large market share when it comes to digitally downloadable games.