Valve has announced a new regulation for promotional images of image assets in the Steam store and library, which goes into effect on September 1 of this year. Game developers will not be allowed to include award logos, game ratings, discounts, promotional text descriptions, and other information in promotional images for their games. This new regulation may have a significant impact on some game developers, who mainly use this information to guide users to install.
What you can/can’t include in promotional images of image assets in the Steam Store and Library
When customers are looking for games on Steam that they want to buy and play, our goal is to make the process as clear and straightforward as possible. Recently, we’ve noticed game developers adding more text, award logos, and even game ratings to their image assets. This made us realize that our guidelines for this were not clear enough. Due to the lack of clear and unambiguous rules, we found that some of the content added to image assets could cause confusion and even inaccurate perceptions for customers.
For example, some of the game logos themselves became so small that it was difficult for players to tell what the game was called. Some image assets are filled with award logos and ratings that are hard to focus on and difficult to read. Some promotional images also contain game ratings that are no longer accurate. We also saw that in most cases, the text attached to the assets was only in English, thus alienating many non-English speaking Steam players.
We understand that developers want to communicate to gamers that their games are of excellent quality, and Steam already provides space on the Game Store page to display most of this information. Media review quotes, media ratings, and special awards are all displayed in a dedicated space on the Steam Store page where customers can find relevant information in one place. You can check out our Store Page accolades documentation for details.
We want to make sure the content of our guidelines is as clear as possible about what should and should not be included on image assets, so today we’re clarifying some existing rules and proposing some new ones (these will come into effect on September 1, 2022 (PT)). You can view the full rules on our official Image Asset Rules page.
For your viewing pleasure, we have also listed these rules below.
Store Image Asset Rules
Store image assets are banner images (called “promotional images” in Steamworks) that represent your game throughout the store. You can find detailed specifications and templates in our Store Image Assets documentation.
The content of the basic image asset promo image on Steam is limited to the game artwork, game name, and official subtitle. For the sake of clarity, this means that
may not contain any ratings
regardless of whether the rating is from a Steam review or external media.
may not contain any award names
No logos or emblems.
Cannot contain discounted marketing copy
(e.g., no “on sale” or “up to 10% off” text).
may not contain text or images promoting another product
This includes marketing content that does not include a sequel or other work in the same series.
may not contain other miscellaneous text
No other miscellaneous text.
We understand that partners are keen to promote major updates and seasonal events, and customers are often happy to see such content in game graphics. While such content is not allowed in the base promotional image assets (see #1 above), we support the use of alternative artwork for promotional images for this purpose, with the following restrictions.
Alternative artwork must be used
- When text is included in an image asset, it must be uploaded as alternative artwork for a period of one month.
All text must be localized
- All text included in image assets must be localized to at least one of the languages supported by the game.
Only for describing new content
- Additional text on game promotional artwork may only describe major updates to game content, new seasonal events, season passes, DLC, or similar new content for the game.
Library Image Asset Rules
A library image asset is a set of images that represent your game in the Steam library. They include a vertical promotional image, a library homepage image, and a logo. You can find detailed specifications and templates in our library assets documentation. Each of these assets has a slightly different content and purpose.
Library promotional image
- This image must include your game’s logo. If appropriate, it can also contain the subtitle of your game. There should be no other text on this promotional image.
Library homepage image
- This image may contain artwork only. This asset should not contain any text on it.
- This image should be your game’s logo only, with a transparent background. This asset should not contain any other text.
General image asset rules
In addition to the specific rules above, all promotional images on Steam must adhere to the following basic rules.
Promotional images must contain a clearly labeled product logo/name and have the correct dimensions.
All artwork for promotional images (store and library) must be PG-13 rated.
What is the right text for store graphics? It is perfectly possible to subtly promote your latest update or newest content on your store promo graphics by using temporary alternative artwork and localizing the text to a language supported by the game. Please see the rules above for details.
Rules will come into effect on September 1, 2022 (PT)
We would like to remind you that these new rules will come into effect on September 1, 2022 (PT) and we ask all game developers to check their image assets and make the necessary changes to make them compliant with the new rules.
To check your image assets, visit the “Edit Store Page” section of the game and click on the “Image Assets” tab. Note: Please check if you have alternative artwork in use, which may also need to be updated.
Games that do not follow these rules may have limited visibility on the Steam Store and will not be eligible to participate in official Steam sales and events.