Good Old Games has evolved big time in the world of digital distribution. The latest efforts from the CD Projekt Red-owned digital storefront includes the highly anticipated and much requested GOG game client. The name of the client? GOG Galaxy.
The company recently made an announcement on their official website stating that gamers can currently register for the GOG Galaxy beta and partake in many of the new features that the service has to offer, this includes being able to use a one-stop-shop client to download games, chat it up with friends and keep track of score, achievements and the ever-expanding library of GOG's digital games. As mentioned on the website...
We're proud to have gotten this far, and we know that we couldn't have done it without you all - that's everyone who spent months in alpha testing, that's those of you who talked to us about your needs and expectations, and it's every single one of you that has supported us since ever. So thanks, GOG Galaxy is for you!
Just like with Valve's Steam client, the GOG Galaxy client will allow you to start, pause, stop and resume downloads. This makes it a heck of a lot easier to download massive games like The Witcher 3 without having to worry about the browser having an error and erasing the 15 or so gigabytes you started downloading but couldn't finish due to a browser crash. No more of that.
In addition to download resuming, GOG Galaxy also offers gamers an option that's highly underutilized in Steam: backups. You can backup your games in Steam and play them offline, but it's not a feature a lot of people talk about very often. GOG Galaxy will allow for the same thing – you'll be able to download and backup your games using a standalone installer so you won't even have to worry about using GOG Galaxy to access the games in your library.
One of the most exciting new features present in GOG Galaxy that isn't present in Steam is patch rollbacks. You will be able to rollback patches in games to earlier versions, if you want to. It's your choice. Why is this feature important? Well, a perfect example of this is GTA IV. In some of the newer updates Rockstar made it difficult or next-to-nigh impossible to use certain mods in some of the newer, patched versions of GTA IV. Steam would automatically update the game to the newest version, so it made it difficult for Steam users to play GTA IV with mods, forcing them to have to download an older version of the game from either torrent sites or file portals hosting cracked versions of the game. The pain-free alternative is to simply rollback the patch and have fun. GOG Galaxy offers that pain-free alternative.
Another exciting feature in the client is cross-platform play. This is really neat. In addition to having standard built-in features like achievements, online chats and a friends list, GOG Galaxy has cross-play support for games offered on other services. This means that if you have a GOG version of a game you can cross-play some multiplayer games with people who have the game on Steam. How awesome is that?
GOG Galaxy is currently undergoing beta testing and sign-ups are available right now. You can attempt to get in on the beta by registering over on the GOG Galaxy website.