Steam Best Practices:
Hook your readers
Make sure your short description has a hook, such as your game’s unique selling point. This helps your game stand out as well as potential players distinguish it from other games. Given the ever-increasing number of games available on Steam, distinguishability becomes increasingly more relevant. Since the short description is unarguably one of the most impactful elements of your store page, it is crucial to write copy that attracts readers’ attention and makes them engage with the rest of your store page.
Include relevant keywords
Your short description should include relevant keywords that best describe your game, such as its primary mechanics and loops. That way readers can get an accurate idea of what your game is about, and will also improve its discoverability when users are searching the store for related keywords. It goes with(out) saying that you shouldn’t bloat it with keywords your competitors use to try to inflate visibility. Keep it original and appealing.
Quickly touch upon the genre
Players browsing for games in a specific genre look for this information in the short description. If it is not included, they might skip over to the next tab. It is therefore best to briefly mention your game’s genre in the short description so that nobody bounces from your store page due to a lack of general information. We like to point out that some advise a different approach, arguing that “people are bored of just reading: ‘Game name is a something something game.'” – No More Robots’ founder Mike Rose. In the end it is up to you and what you think will resonate better with your game’s target audience.
Omit information about the setting
Leave information about the setting of your game for the description, screenshots and trailers. They are far better at conveying setting specific info than the short description. Including this info hear will only bloat it and will draw away attention from the more persuasive pieces of key information. If you feel like the setting is what makes your game stand out from the rest, you can consider to include it, but general advise is not to.
Make it clean and concise
Write a clean and concise short-description using short words. Potential players usually just quickly skim through it. If it is hard to read and they don’t get what it is about from taking a quick glance, they are unlikely to feel intrigued to learn more about your game.
Keep character count in mind
The character count for English descriptions is 300, but if you’re going to localize your game, you will have to translate your short description to different languages. For that reason it make sense to limit your short description to 200 – 250 characters so that you can easily translate it without having to shorten it. You can, of course, also rewrite your descriptions for each localization, but we advise to keep things uniform and simple.
Marie Dealessandri – gamesindustry.biz, Chris Zukowski – howtomarketagame.com, Pawel Miechowski – 11bit studios, Michael Schade – Rockfish Games, Tom Giardino – Valve