Amazon now offers digitally distributed games outside of the casual realm.
Online retailer Amazon recently added a lineup of “core” games to its digital distribution offerings that should make them more appealing to the hardcore gamer. Amazon launched a casual gaming download service in early 2009 that included hidden-object titles, puzzle games, and the like, but the new core games are more in the “AAA” realm.
Steam is the big player in the digital distribution market right now, but with Amazon’s similar propensity for slashing prices it could become a worthy competitor, or at least a new option for those that like to download their games. Currently, Amazon is holding a sale on core games where multiple titles are going for 50% or more off of their normal prices, while another sale on EA titles is taking 33% off. The sales are offering titles like The Witcher for just $6, which is definitely a good start for Amazon.
Amazon’s core downloads system doesn’t provide the bonus functionality that Steam does, so it won’t replace Valve, but it never hurts to have more outlets to find great gaming deals. Amazon will apparently be one of those now, and with the 2010 holiday season coming up it jumped in at the right time.