Last week, Valve started and terminated a program which allowed mod makers to make profit selling their mods through Steam. According to Quake director John Romero, Valve wasn't really the first company to toy with this idea as Id Software beat them to it 20 years ago.
"I've always believed that mod makers should be able to make money from their creations," he said. "In 1995, while we were making Quake, we had the idea to start a company called id Net. This company would be the portal that players would connect to and play other mod maker's creations."
"It was to be a curated site, levels and mods chosen by us at id, and if we put your content on our network we would pay you an amount equal to the traffic that your content drove to the site. The idea was that players would log in and be in a big level that felt like a castle with lots of doorway portals and signage that explained where you were going and what was there."
Unfortunately, id Software had its hands full with Quake and didn't have any resources to work on id Net. Nonetheless, Romero still stands behind that idea. "I still believe that creators should be rewarded for their hard work," he asserted. "That's what we do in our game companies, why would it be so different for outsiders?"