Watch out, Steam? Discord starts selling PC games, unveils a universal game launcher

Mere weeks after Valve launched a blatant Discord clone, Discord is striking back. The company will begin selling PC games directly inside its supercharged communications software, Discord announced today, as well as offer access to select games as part of its $5 per month Nitro subscription.

The Discord Store’s beta rollout starts small, however. Today, 50,000 Canadian users running Windows PCs will see it offered as a new tab on the Discord home screen.

Discord likens its curated game store to “one of those cozy neighborhood book shops with recommendations about the hottest and newest games from us to you,” complete with testimonies from employees about why a particular game is worth your time.

The Discord Store will sell a fairly strong lineup of indie games at launch, per Variety:

  • Dead Cells
  • Frostpunk
  • Omensight
  • Into the Breach
  • SpellForce 3
  • The Banner Saga 3
  • Pillars of Eternity II: Deadfire
  • Hollow Knight
  • Moonlighter
  • This is the Police 2
  • Starbound

In the future, the store will also include “First on Discord” titles—indie games that launch on the Discord Store alone. “To be very clear, First on Discord games are temporarily exclusive,” the company says. “They’re literally first on Discord — usually 90 days and then the developers can sell anywhere else they want.”

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Adding a selection of “free” games to Discord’s $5 per month or $50 per year Nitro subscription makes the service much more enticing. The initial batch of 10 games pack some great, yet aging titles, including Saints Row: The ThirdDarksiders: Warmastered EditionSuper Meat Boy, Metro: Last Light Redux, and System Shock Enhanced Edition.

Discord plans to expand to more countries and currencies before the full launch of the Discord Store later this year, the company told Variety.

discord universal library Discord

Discord’s new Universal Library.

Finally, Discord’s greatest strength lies in its cross-platform ubiquity, and another new feature takes advantage of it. Discord home screen is getting yet another new tab dubbed Universal Library. Universal Library scans your computer for any installed PC games, just like Nvidia and AMD’s software, then lets you launch those games right within Discord, no matter which platform they’re on. If it needs a launcher like Steam or Uplay, Discord will boot up that, too.

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