A few weeks ago, Steam rebuilt their chat system and added some features that looked like they were ripped right out of Discord. Now, the VoIP giant for gamers is retaliating by releasing a game distribution platform. That’s right, Discord now sells games.
The Discord Store is an experience that’s built by curated content that’ll automatically suggest games based on player interests. It’s like the Steam front page, but more personalized and catered for each individual player instead of the general population’s tastes. Discord staff curates the content that appears in the store in order to prevent Steam’s issue with game saturation and competition for virtual sell space.
Right now, players can buy a variety of games like Hollow Knight, Moonlighter, Starbound, This is the Police 2, The Banner Saga 3, and more.
Discord is making a bold move by competing directly with Steam, but they probably would’ve done so regardless of whether or not Steam copied their chat system’s layout and design.
The most interesting news is the First on Discord section. They plan to show off indie games they’ve helped support and develop and launch them exclusively only on Discord fora limited period of time. This is typically a period of 90 days before the game devs can sell it anywhere else, like Steam. Discord also takes 30% of sales just like the DRM giant. So far, the only game that’s premiering on this program is Bad North, an indie real-time roguelike. The post states:
“To be very clear, First on Discord games are temporarily exclusive. They’re literally first on Discord — usually 90 days and then the developers can sell anywhere else they want. This beta won’t have any First on Discord titles, but we’ll be showing off some soon.”
Discord Nitro is also getting revamped. Subs will see a curated list of popular titles picked by the staff, such as Super Meat Boy and System Shock Enhanced Edition. And the new Discord also has a Universal Library tab that scans your computer for games on all platforms like Steam, UPlay, and Discord itself. It then links them to this singular tab so you can play directly from Discord no matter where the game is housed. It’ll just launch the other launcher and then continue the game automatically.
Discord Store is currently in beta and will roll out worldwide slowly over time. It’s currently available to Canadian users only at a cap of 50K players. US players should soon be able to try out the full version.