Valve must be sleeping poorly these days. Steam is still king of PC gaming at the moment, but it’s an increasingly belabored kingdom beset on all sides by would-be rulers. Today presents perhaps the strongest challenge yet: Epic, flush with Fortnite cash, will open its own storefront in the near future. It’s cross-platform, cuts developers a much better deal, focuses on discoverability and communication from the get-go, and of course ties in with Epic’s work on the Unreal graphics engine.
We’ve seen plenty of Steam competitors over the years, but this is the first one I’d call a true threat to Valve’s dominance. I’m going to take a bit to recap the story as it stands, but if you want to know how this affects you feel free to skip ahead to “Part 2” where we lay out what this means for the future.