What better way to benefit both a distributor and its customers than to let the customers vote on games to be added to the service? Theoretically, gamers choose the most deserving games that they want to pay money for and the distributors put up the most likely to be purchased titles. It's a perfect idea. At heart. In practice, it's shaky.
There are over 1300 Greenlight games. 1300. Why? Because there is almost no filter (other than against troll posts and the most crappy of crap submissions). Of that, 56 have been greenlit and only 31 released.
My first complaint goes to some of the titles greenlit. Not that they're bad games at all; but the absurdity of them going through the greenlight process is painful. For starters; Postal 2. Postal mother slapping 2. Why would that need to go through the greenlight process? Postal 3 already has a place on Steam...why does P2 need to go through Greenlight? As an established piece, it should have gone through the professional channels and kept from drawing attention to real up and coming indie titles. Throw in ports of successful XBL games, other developers that don't exactly need charity in trying to get their games out, and games that are only getting attention because some internet celebrity featured it once or 80 times, and you have a good chunk of the titles coming from the sort of developers that Greenlight was NOT intended for.
Another issue is that there are so many "atmosphere" games. One of them says that it "isn't just a game; it's an experience that will change your life!"....no wait, that's what exactly all of them say. "The Light" even tries to make up its mandatory 3 bulletpoints, and the first two are "relaxing atmosphere" and "beautiful environment." As if a relaxing atmosphere is going to look like a bowl of turds. Some of these titles don't even offer up a shred of suggestion as to what the "interactive story" is even about; from what's shown, they just look like 3D art projects and by the descriptions are simply made by people that don't have any idea what to do with it but let you run around.
Gamers don't know what's good for them. These "atmosphere games" don't offer up anything but some pretty pictures of atmosphere and promise "uhhhh....some sorta interactive story thing" and it gets lit. Why? Because people scream "GROOO TAKE DAT CAL UV DOOTY! STORIZ AND STUF!" People see something going against the grain (lol, right, going against the grain by following the sea of upcoming atmosphere "games") with pretty graphics and they assume it will be great, approving it over unique titles (that promise actual gameplay and specific stories) and throwing money at it via kickstarter.
And finally, there is just so much repetition. How many people are going to vote/preview 1300 games, of which so many are basically the same as the last, other than pretentious people like myself? The previously mentioned blind "GROOO TAKE DAT CAL UV DOOTY!" crowd, people who want more Minecraft knockoffs, and people looking to vote for the most AAA looking games offered. Steam should have been more involved in filtering what went in to the greenlight candidacy.
The result is something full of well intention but riddled with logical flaws.