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Valheim dev says mods should always be free

Valheim developer Iron Gate writes on Steam that all mods for its cult Viking game should be free, and that paid mods contradict the “open spirit” of modding.

Valheim dev says mods should always be free: A giant blue troll in Steam survival game Valheim

Valheim developer Iron Gate has outlined its official stance on mods for the Viking survival game, saying that charging money for a mod is “against the creative and open spirit of modding itself,” and urging the creators of Valheim mods to make them available for free. Valheim does not have any official mod support, but nevertheless features a variety of modded servers and community content. Although Iron Gate says it does not want “payment to be a requirement to access a mod,” the developer encourages players to make voluntary donations to mod creators.

In a statement simply titled “Regarding Mods,” Iron Gate outlines its philosophy towards the use of mods in Valheim, and whether or not they should only be available in exchange for money.

The studio says that, while Valheim lacks official mod support, Iron Gate is “happy to see that people are engaging with our game and creating their own mods for it,” adding however that “any creating and using of mods is done at your own risk, and that we [Iron Gate] can’t guarantee that mods will be compatible with newer versions of the game.”

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The Valheim dev then discusses the idea of paid-for mods, explaining that, while it understands mod creators may put a great deal of effort into their work, Iron Gate “does not condone locking modded content behind a paywall.”

“We definitely understand that you spend a lot of your time on creating a mod, and that you might want financial compensation for that, but Iron Gate does not condone locking modded content behind a paywall,” Iron Gate says. “We feel that charging money for a mod is against the creative and open spirit of modding itself, and therefore we urge all mod authors to make their mods freely available to all who want to play them.

“This should include the whole mod, and not just have part of the mod available for free while another part of it costs money,” the Valheim dev continues. “If you want to show your appreciation for a mod author you can of course still support them with a voluntary donation, but we do not want payment to be a requirement to access a mod.”

Iron Gate also urges mod creators to make it clear, “in game and on any website where the mod is available,” that their mods are unofficial. Joining modded Valheim servers can sometimes trigger an automatic mod download, and Iron Gate says it wants to “avoid confusion for players, so that they can know whether or not they are playing a modded game.”

Give yourself the best chance for survival with our Valheim console commands and cheats guide, revised and updated for 2023. You might also want tips on all the toughest Valheim bosses, or you could perhaps try some of the other best Viking games on PC.