The Burning Question: Steam vs Epic Games Store – is this good or bad for gaming?

I’m someone who thinks that competition is healthy and that we wouldn’t see any advancement of any kind of two forces weren’t pitted against each other to innovate, or better yet, develop something that’s more cost effective. Take Microsoft and Macintosh for example, each have their own vision for their companies and products, but they are trying to win the hearts of the consumer by playing to their needs and desires. Imagine if we only had one or the other. We could end up with multi-functional machines running on operating systems that are fully integrated with each other, or hardware that’s packaged as premium and can only function with another component created by the same company.

Covering the gaming industry in its entirety, we’ve seen the healthy competition between console manufacturers producing relatively different experiences and pushing each other to create something new. The rapid rate at which technologies have advanced is testament to it, and I’m sure we are eternally grateful for it.

Over a decade we’ve seen the Steam store push PC gamers to spend every last cent they have on ludicrous deals, so much so that it has its own meme. For that time we’ve become so used to the Steam platform being the go-to for most PC game titles. As they say, we humans can be very averse to change, and the fact that new concepts or ways of doing things falling into our routine, it gets some people’s hair standing on end and outright disgusted at the thought.

Now, with consoles, you obviously require a specific platform to play a certain game title, like Uncharted on PS4 and Halo on Xbox. Yes, I’m well aware that Halo is now available on PC as well along with other titles, but the main reason for bringing this up is that you need an entirely different platform to play a specific game. In this regard, PC players have had it easy with many titles being available on one platform.

But, I digress. Steam has had quite a lengthy spell as the main source of electronic entertainment for PC players. Now that Epic Games has stepped into the arena some developers have opted to launch their titles through the new online title purchase system which comes with its own desktop application. So, it’s basically Steam, but with specific titles under its belt. For some it seems like a cash grab from Epic, and I can see why they’d think that, but I’m also somewhat of the eternal optimist and believe this could be a healthy bout that could yield rewards for us as gamer in the future. This might prove the opposite for developers and publishers though as they might suffer under the discounts that these platforms may delve into in the years to come.

It could make their lives harder, no doubt. With the increasing demand for near perfect content and overload on development resources, and the ongoing and manipulation and cash cow mechanics from some publishers, the future can appear bleak under certain circumstances.

But, I just can’t shake the feeling that this was needed. As Kanye eloquently put it “No one man should have all that power.” Do you share any of the same concerns or enthusiasm around this topic, and if you do, what are the main factors sculpting your opinion?

I Game, I Design, I wish I could Game Design.

Lost Password

Sign Up