Brick-and-mortar video game retailers will sell hardware that threatens the lifeblood of those very companies, beginning this fall. GameStop in the US, GAME in the UK, and EB Games in Canada will feature in-store sections dedicated to Steam hardware and gift cards.
Steam is the popular online PC video game distribution service owned and operated by publisher Valve. In November, the company will release Steam Machines, Steam Link, and the Steam Controller, all designed to make PC gaming as streamlined and accessible as traditional game consoles. But unlike most game consoles, Steam Machines are designed for digital video games purchases on the Steam marketplace — not at GameStop.
Other than retail exclusivity of the hardware through the holidays, it's unclear what the traditional game retailers hope to gain from the arrangement. Digital storefronts like Steam don't allow games purchased on the platform to be resold by shops like GameStop, a source of billions of dollars in revenue for the company.
Steam hardware is scheduled for release on November 10th, and is currently available for preorder.
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