One of the big gimmicks of the Valve fall and winter sales was that there were these daily deals that occurred every eight or so hours, as well as flash deals that happened periodically. Those deals will be gone for the next two Steam sales, starting with the autumn sale that commences on November 25th.
Eurogamer managed to get their hands on a statement that Valve has sent out to developers and publishers regarding the major change they're making to their end of the year sales, which kicks off on November 25th and ends on December 1st. The winter sale will run from December 22nd up until January 4th.
According to the letter sent out by Valve, they state...
We'll still be highlighting your top games on the front page for 24-48 hour spans, but those products will stay at their most competitive discount, before and after being featured,
So what does this actually mean in the context of the day to day sales that Valve has running on Steam during the big autumn and winter extravaganza? Well, remember how during the Steam sales there would be a flash sale for maybe an hour or two for a game that was deeply discounted by 75%? Well those are gone. Also, remember how there was like an hour sale on a collection of games discounted by anywhere between 75% and 90% off? Well, those are gone, too.
The idea is that the sales for the games will be at a fixed price. So if a game is going to be 75% off it's going to stay 75% off. Ultimately Valve plans on alternating what games are featured on the front of the store page throughout the week long Steam sales. In a way this could be good and bad.
The good part is that it means that if you were sleep or busy or working and you missed out on the flash deals or daily deals, you don't have to worry because if a game like The Walking Dead gets marked down to 75% off it's going to stay that way all the way through the sales event. So even if you missed a day or two of the Steam sale, you could always hop in on day three and pick up The Walking Dead for 75% off.
The bad part is that it means whatever fixed discount a game receives it's going to stay that way from start to finish. It means developers and publishers will have to think critically about how deep they want to discount a game throughout the sales term. So a game like DayZ being discounted by say 33% will stay at 33% until the sale ends. You won't have a flash deal where you might dip back in and find it discounted by 50%. It also means that if a game like GTA V is only discounted by 40% there won't be any other cuts to the game and you'll just have to stick with that 40% discount, which may or may not be enough to entice some gamers to spend big money during the Steam sale.
Of course, we won't know how this all plays out until we see it in action, and we won't have to wait long given that the sale gets underway on November 25th.