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Judge dismisses Wolfire's antitrust lawsuit against Valve

Complaint did "not articulate sufficient facts to plausibly allege an antitrust injury based on that market"

A US District judge dismissed the antitrust lawsuit filed by Wolfire Games against Valve.

As reported by Rock Paper Shotgun, the ruling was filed on November 19, with the document indicating that Wolfire's complaint did "not articulate sufficient facts to plausibly allege an antitrust injury based on that market."

The starting point of the lawsuit, which Wolfire filed in April, was that Valve utilises "anticompetitive practices and its monopoly power to force Wolfire and similarly situated personal computer desktop game publishers to pay [its] supracompetitive fees for the sale of their games."

Concerning Valve's 30% cut on game sales, US District judge John C. Coughenour argued that it's "commensurate with the Steam platform's value to game publishers."

He added that Wolfire's complaint lacked allegations supporting what it had called Valve's "coercive practices [resulting] in non-price antitrust injuries, namely a reduction in output and quality."

"If anything, the facts provided by the [Class Action Complaint], at least with respect to output, suggest the opposite -- a consistent increase in the number of games available in the market and on the Steam platform," the judge said. "The CAC does not provide facts describing how Wolfire directly suffered from an alleged reduction in output and/or quality. Instead, it only addresses the impact on the industry."

The document concluded that Wolfire can file another complaint addressing the issues highlighted in the dismissal, within 30 days.

At the time the lawsuit was filed, Wolfire CEO David Rosen said that he felt he "had no choice" as "gamers and game developers are being harmed by Valve's conduct."

Valve had filed a motion to dismiss the antitrust lawsuit in July.

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Marie Dealessandri

Features Editor

Marie Dealessandri joined GamesIndustry.biz in 2019 to head its Academy section. A journalist since 2012, she started in games in 2016 at B2B magazine MCV. She can be found (rarely) tweeting @mariedeal, usually on a loop about Baldur’s Gate and the Dead Cells soundtrack.