Notch welcomes Steam competition

Minecraft creator Markus "Notch" Persson says it is a "good thing" that the likes of EA are challenging Steam's dominance of digital PC game sales.

Speaking to Gamespy, Persson – who handed the Minecraft reins to Jens Bergensten in December – said he was wary of one platform controlling the entire market.

"I think it's a bit dangerous to only have one digital distribution platform like Steam," he said. "I love Valve, but out of principle, I find the idea of one platform a bit scary. So I like that there are others competing – for example, Desura and Impulse, who recently got bought by GameStop. It's a good thing that there are more."

The biggest challenger, though, is EA Origin, which launched last year to no little controversy, with EA criticised for effectively forcing players to use it to play EA games including Battlefield 3. It appears to be succeeding either way – EA said last month that the platform has over 9 million registered users and has brought in $100 million in revenue.

"Origin does a couple of things badly compared to Steam, which is impressive since they had eight years to study [it]," Persson explained. "They should definitely have a chance to do their thing, but they might want to move away from titles that make people use it, and show people why they should use it. But I think, in principle, it's a good thing."