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GamersGate Comes Out Swinging; Slams Steam, OnLive & Origin

Jonathan Lester
Fighting talk, GamersGate, PC games

GamersGate Comes Out Swinging; Slams Steam, OnLive & Origin

"Steam’s Market Share Can Only Shrink"

After reporting 50% growth over 2011 and opening a major new office, GamersGate believes it has what it takes to take on the big guns in their own territory. GamersGateoss Theo Bergquist reckons that their lack of a "bulky client" makes them an increasingly attractive proposition compared to Steam - whose market share can "only shrink," apparently - and that OnLive are struggling with the business side of their streaming games model. It's a bold claim for the plucky digital distributor, and we've got the full story below.

Speaking to IndustryGamers, Bergquist states that his frequent antagonistic appearances on Steam haven't been "overly critical," but that GamersGate's refusal to force players to download a client makes them a safer bet for all but the "super hard-core."

I don’t think I’ve been overly critical [about Steam], but it could appear that way when everyone tends to just hail them.

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, Steam’s market share can only shrink. Steam is doing a good job for the super hard-core audience, but everyone knows that’s not where the money is. The market is mostly made up of people who buy two to three games a year and want a fast, easy and seamless way of buying games. They don’t want a bulky client.

When asked whether GamersGate will be looking into streaming games, Bergquist was quick to suggest that the model is just too difficult to monetise properly; citing OnLive's "struggle" with revenue and profits as an example of why most gamers still want to buy games outright.

Right now, GamersGate’s business is growing rapidly and there is no reason to change a winning concept. As far as I know, OnLive still struggles with their revenue and business model. In theory it’s a nice business, but is that really what the customers want or something made for VC-firms?

Finally, Bergquist was willing to praise EA for their tenacity with Origin, but doesn't consider them a competitor. Ouch.

I must say I’m very impressed by the speed and determination [that EA showed when they] launched Origin. Hats off to them! But I’m not sure I see them as a competitor as I do Steam.

Since the PC is the only true open platform when it comes to digital downloads, we actually reckon that Bergquist is on the right track. GamersGate provide excellent deals throughout the year (sparking real competition in the digital market) and never force you to play games through a client - so as far as we're concerned, there's nowhere to go but up. Here's hoping for a happy new year.

What say you, gamers? Have GamersGate tempted you away from Steam and OnLive? Or is this all a bit premature? Let us know what you think!

Add a comment4 comments
Quietus  Dec. 20, 2011 at 16:17

I say good luck to them. While I've enjoyed Steam, with its auto-updates, and regular sales, it still means I have to have the client installed, and for somebody like me, who is not interested in the community, or anything beyond the games themselves, it's unnecessary.

If we all had accounts with everybody offering digital distribution, and all of them had some client or other that had to be running at all times, our systems would soon grind to a halt.

DivideByZero  Dec. 20, 2011 at 16:46

I run Steam all the time as I find the friend feature useful. I have games on Origin and only start it when I need it.

I really like the client for Steam... I mean, I didn't at first, it was just junk, an over-protective DRM. But now it has evolved and matured it is a really nice client.

I am all for GG though... the more competition we have the better. Steam sales used to be a LOT better than they are now.

Tsung  Dec. 20, 2011 at 22:22

I like all my games available in one client, I fire up Steam and my games auto-update / patch. I go to lan parties I can backup my game and restore it on someone elses machine (assuming they bought it ofc).

One client, one friends list, one location for game installs, one easy way to see who is playing what and ability to join them. I'm sorry, but what is not to like?

The client is bulky? what is it? 50mb? nothing nowadays.. really.. honestly.. Far better all my games are in steam than installing themselves all over my hard drive willy nilly.

Quietus  Dec. 21, 2011 at 00:01

Exactly. If all of the developers / distributors would get on board, and just use Steam, it'd be fine, but we're heading for a battle, where some developers' products will not be available. I believe EA have already pulled their stuff from Steam. If it gets worse, and we're expected to install every client, from everybody that decides to have one, it'll be a nightmare having them all running at once.


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