Upcoming changes to Valve's Steam store policies mean that game developers and publishers will no longer be able to use "concept art, pre-rendered cinematic stills, or images that contain awards, marketing copy, or written product descriptions" in the screenshot section of their games.
This, according to an image of a message posted in the Facepunch forums found below and confirmed with Valve to be legit, is to ensure that "customers understand what the product is that they are looking at."
"We haven't been super crisp on guidelines for screenshots in the past, so we'd like to take this opportunity to clarify some rules in this space. When the 'screenshot' section of a store page is used for images other than screenshots that depict the game, it can make it harder for customers to understand what the product is that they are looking at," the message says. "Additionally, we're going to start showing game screenshots in more places as described above, and these images need to be able to represent the game."
"As described above" refers to what Valve is calling the "Discovery Update 2.0," scheduled to go live in a couple of weeks, which will enable users "to see more of what they like and less of what they are not interested in or find offensive." To help accomplish that, Valve is asking publishers to indicate which of their screenshots contain potentially offensive content, like excessive gore, nudity, or sexual themes.
"This content can be surprising and potentially offensive when shown to users without warning," the message states. "So, we'd like a better idea of which screenshots you have of your content that can be shown to a broader audience, and which screenshots should just be visible on your store page for users that are interested in investigating further."
To demonstrate that it's serious, Valve used one of its own games, Dota 2, as an example "of where we were doing it wrong ourselves." As seen above, the store page entry has now been changed, and the screenshot section now contains nothing but screens.