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Valve now lets modders sell their work through Steam, starting with Skyrim

Michael McWhertor is a journalist with more than 17 years of experience covering video games, technology, movies, TV, and entertainment.

Mod makers can now sell their creations to players directly through Steam, Valve announced today, starting with The Elder Scrolls 5: Skyrim.

Community made mods have been available through Steam Workshop in Skyrim and other games on Steam since 2011, when the Workshop was introduced. Valve notes that more than 24,000 free mods and player-made items for Skyrim are available in the Steam Workshop, and those mods have been downloaded more than 170 million times.

Starting today, Valve says it's "putting mod authors in business via a new streamlined process for listing, selling and managing their creations."

"We think this is a great opportunity to help support the incredible creative work being done by mod makers in the Steam Workshop," Valve's Tom Bui said in a release. "User generated content is an increasingly significant component of many games, and opening new avenues to help financially support those contributors via Steam Workshop will help drive the level of UGC to new heights."

A number of paid mods for Skyrim, including items, armor sets, visual tweaks and custom locations, are now available in the game's Workshop on Steam. While some have listed prices, many of those are categorized as "pay what you want," meaning Steam users can set their own price. Suggested pricing on the initial set of paid mods ranges from $0.25 to $5.99. Valve is currently offering a discounted "debut pack" of 17 paid Skyrim mods for $28.68.

Valve says Steam users who purchase mods through the Workshop can receive refunds on within 24 hours if they're not satisfied. More details on paid mods, and what they mean for players and creators, are available on Steam.

Earlier this year, Valve announced it had paid out more than $57 million to Steam content creators. The company's own games, including Team Fortress 2, Dota 2 and Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, let players purchase community-made items through their respective game stores. Valve's Left 4 Dead 2 and many third-party games also support Steam Workshop.