Paid mods may have proved a bit of a PR nightmare for Valve and Bethesda, but even the creators involved in the scheme have had it tough.
Paid mods have been axed from Skyrim’s Steam Workshop following a huge wave of angry backlash.
Although much of the diatribe against the scheme focused on perceived unfairness of revenue splits, Skyrim modder James Ive, better known as Jimo, told Polygon this anger has also affected creators.
“I’ve received countless death threats, attacks and hateful comments. Just about everything you can think of,” he said.
Fellow modder Thiago Vidotto said he also received a lot of hate, and was accused of “destroying the gaming world”.
There are arguments on both sides, of course: some modders work very hard on their creations, and the idea of them being able to go pro has potential benefits for creators and users alike. But many gamers fear that a paid mod suite would spell the end of free content, although this hasn’t been the case for Valve games like Team Fortress 2.
There have also been suggestions that the lack of curation on Steam Workshop means modders’ work could be re-uploaded by others, to profit the thieves, and as already mentioned, some have questioned the fairness of the revenue split.
Polygon’s full article contains further discussion of the paid mod system from a modder’s point of view, and is well worth a read if you have strong feelings on this issue.