GOG Galaxy 2.0 hands-on: The only game launcher you need? Not yet, but maybe someday

While Valve and Epic battle over storefront supremacy, there’s one other battle quietly looming. As complaints mount towards the proliferation of storefronts, there’s an opportunity for somebody to make the ur-storefront. I’m speaking in fact concerning the launcher that may unify all the opposite launchers, the one launcher to rule all of them and—within the darkness of your arduous drive—bind them.

And GOG’s taken an early shot at it. Building off its Galaxy launcher, which was as soon as a mere repository and auto-updater on your GOG library, it’s now begun rolling out “Galaxy 2.0” to a choose few, together with us. I’ve spent the final week or so testing its capabilities to see if I’m able to condense my launcher loadout.

The verdict? It’s early days but, and there are kinks GOG must work out—some area of interest, some broader—but Galaxy 2.0 makes an fascinating and engaging bid.

Setting up

Getting began is simpler than I anticipated, as effectively. GOG’s not the only launcher to permit video games from different companies, but normally the implementation is unwieldy. Steam’s “Add a Non-Steam Game” perform, as an example, scans each single program in your arduous drive and does little besides make a Steam-specific shortcut inside your game library. Useful, often, but not a terrific long-term resolution.

GOG Galaxy 2.0 IDG / Hayden Dingman

Galaxy 2.0 is a extra automated course of. Initially you’ll only see your GOG library, assuming you have one. It works the identical as the unique Galaxy launcher in that regard.

But you’re prompted to “Add Games and Friends” as effectively. Some of those potential third-party connections are official, created and supported by GOG, although in the meanwhile that listing only contains Xbox Live, and even that doesn’t really permit you to entry your Xbox Play Anywhere video games but.

The bulk of Galaxy 2.0’s connections have been constructed by the neighborhood utilizing GOG’s SDK to implement the suitable hooks, and already there’s a thriving plugin aftermarket, introduced inside Galaxy 2.0 as “Community Integrations – Popular.” Steam, Battle.internet, Epic Games Store, Uplay, Origin, and extra may be added by means of these pseudo-official channels. It’s all the things you’d need, or at the least all the things you’re “forced” to make use of when you can’t use Steam. Yes, I see you.

GOG Galaxy 2.0 IDG / Hayden Dingman

Login takes seconds, every supplier asking on your credentials individually. Once Galaxy 2.0 is allowed you’ll see a word on the backside that claims your library is “Importing,” although even with a Steam library within the 1000’s this took a minute or two at most. And then you’re accomplished, free to peruse any and all your video games by means of GOG, to type them alphabetically in a single lengthy listing or break up them up by storefront, and simply launch the one you need.

Rich information

They’re greater than mere shortcuts. That’s what impresses me most about Galaxy 2.0 to this point. Games you’ve bought from different companies aren’t handled like second-class residents, because the aforementioned…


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