Steam is the clear market leader of online gaming stores, but what alternatives are there? a
The Steam Game Platform is a free program put out by Valve Corporation. It is an all-in-one gaming store and communications platform. There are many users who dislike Steam because of its dedication to DRM or Digital Rights Management. For those users, there are a number of alternatives.
Desura is a free, open-sourced program that is very similar to Steam in many ways.
Advantages:The program allows users to buy and download games, with free access to mods, as well as providing a platform for users to develop games. It was actually created by the same people who made ModDB, which is currently the leading game database. It is also one of the only sources for Linux games.
Disadvantages: The program does not provide nearly as many titles as some of the other options. The community is much smaller than with Steam or some of the other programs.
Official Site: http://www.desura.com
GOG, short for Good Old Games, sells classic PC games at low prices.
Advantages: The website sells classic games that users may not be able to obtain from any other source. These games are sold without DRM, and are compatible with the latest version of Windows. Once a user purchases the game, he or she owns it, and is able to install it as many times as they wish.
Disadvantages: There is no community at all for the GOG site. It exists as just a storefront. Compared to some of the other options, the catalog is much smaller as well.
Official Site: http://www.gog.com/
Raptr is a free social networking site and Windows application that was created especially for video game players.
Advantages: This program allows users to add games to their profile and use those profiles to track play time, submit reviews and publish accomplishment and achievements on social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter. The client itself is a downloadable application for Windows computers.
Disadvantages: This is a single-platform program, only working on Windows computers. Also, while it support Facebook and other common social network sites, there is no support for Google +, nor are the developers planning on implementing any support for that network.
Evolve is a desktop application and community for video game players.
Advantages:This program was designed to help players keep track of their games and accomplishments, and is also an interactive part of an enormous community. In addition, it also offers voice chat and group options to make multiplayer games easy to plan and implement.
Disadvantages:This is another Windows-only program, and is still a fairly new one at that. The program can be buggy and crashes frequently. It has a lot of compatibility problems with some games, and there have been user complaints that it uses up a lot of hardware resources, and it takes up a large amount of hard drive space.
Official Site: https://www.evolvehq.com/welcome
ModDB is the largest game database currently available on the internet.
Advantages: This site is dedicated almost solely to the development of both independent games and independent content for existing games. There are an enormous number of games and mods available for download.
Disadvantages: The site can take some getting used it, because at its core, it is designed for developers. It takes some practice to learn to navigate.
Official Site: http://www.moddb.com
While Steam may offer one of the largest libraries for players of every experience level, it is not the only option by any stretch of the imagination.
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