Valve found themselves facing anti-competition rulings against them from the European Comission earlier this year, as part of an investigation into anti-competitive practices by several companies which also included Bandai Namco, Capcom and ZeniMax.
The EU took exception to the practice of so-called "geo-blocking" of games, which means games are sold at different prices or discounts in depending on the location of the user, which the EU considers a violation of their competition rules.
According to the comission's findings, "these business practices partitioned markets according to national borders and restricted passive sales to consumers. These business practices ultimately denied European consumers the benefits of the EU's Digital Single Market to shop around for the most attractive offer. "
Basically, the EU believe that a customer should be able to buy video games, for the same price, anywhere within the EU in a true "digital single market" - rather than having to "shop around" between various EU member states to find the best deal available.
While Bandai Namco, Capcom, Focus Home Interactive, ZeniMax and Koch Media have now all agreed to settle in the case, it appears that Valve are going to fight the ruling instead. The company is seeking a hearing with the European Comission's compeition regulators to argue it's case.
It's a risky move for Valve, as should they not be successful, the EU has the option of ordering the practice be halted, in addition to fining the company up to 10% of their annual turnover for worldwide sales.
Stay tuned to GameFront for more on this as it happens.