Steam Greenlight launched in 2012 with the dream that players would naturally vote for the games they most wanted. But that idealism fell to the reality of voter approval and it became far more of a popularity contest. In February, Steam finally announced the experiment would end and Greenlight be replaced by the new Direct release format, which lets developers post any game for sale that passes simple criteria. Originally planned for spring, the platform finally has a date for the official transition: June 13th.
Per Steam's blog, Greenlight submissions have been closed and voting has been disabled. The remaining 3,400-plus entries will be reviewed by staff, but even those that don't get Greenlit can go through Direct's approval process. On June 13th, Direct will go live and developers can begin submitting their games.
Steam launched Greenlight to figure out which games players would choose, but the process became pricey and prolonged, with an uncertain roadmap to release. Direct is intended to be a far more predictable path to bringing games to market. New developers only have to fill out digital paperwork including bank and tax information to verify their identity. If they haven't worked with Steam before, the vetting process requires them to wait 30 days before submitting their first game. All titles require a $100 registration fee, which is refunded should the game surpass $1,000 in sales.