The Steam Workshop has a new, streamlined, process that will enable mod creators to list and sell their creations. Players can now buy mods directly from the Workshop and have it immediately be usable in game.
Steam is starting with mods that connect to The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim (which is made by Bethesda Game Studios). They have a history of providing strong support for modifications in their games. Steam says there are now over 24,000 free mods available for Skyrim through the Steam Workshop.
The main idea here seems to be that players can now support the mod authors whose work they are using and enjoy. Those that create mods, and get paid for doing so, might decide to create new, higher quality, items and experiences that can be added to Skyrim.
Creators who want to make paid mods for Skyrim can make new cosmetic items, sound packs, custom skins, fancy houses, epic quests, or entire new cities. They can then set a price and earn a portion of each sale through the Steam Workshop. BBC reports that if a mod is sold, creators will receive 25% of the payment. The rest of the money is split between Valve and the studio or developer who originally made the game.
The implication seems to be that the ability to get paid by selling a mod for a game could, in the future, open up to games other than Skyrim. The information at Steam says “many more of your favorite Workshop games will support paid content in the coming weeks”.