Twitch to begin selling games

Posted on February 28, 2017

News has been announced that video game streaming giant, Twitch, will be expanding its business and begin selling the products that it broadcasts. The new service has been dubbed Twitch Games Commerce.

The reveal comes direct from Twitch via a tweet (below), with further information outlined within a blog post.

The big reveal that has come along with this announcement is that Twitch streamers will be granted a 5% cut of the games sold directly from their streams. The way this works is that a purchase button will be available to those viewing a Twitch stream that will take them to the purchase page of the game currently being streamed. This is a huge win for streamers, opening up new revenue models for those that use the service. Having more competition on the digital PC distribution side of things is probably a good thing as well.

Concerns have also been raised regarding the creation of the Twitch Games Commerce service. First and foremost, how could a viewer ever trust the opinion or reaction of a streamer who is monetarily benefiting from the sales of the games they are playing? If trust existed previously, it most certainly won’t anymore. Secondly, the service is going to heavily encourage streamers to pick up and play only the games available for purchase through Twitch or lose out on a method of monetary gain. Currently the big three streamed games on Twitch are League of Legends, Dota 2 and Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, all of which are HIGHLY unlikely to appear on the Twitch Games Commerce service. Will the creation of this new service see a decrease in coverage of games that viewers want to watch?

The service is arriving in Autumn of this year (Southern-Hemisphere) and the following developers & publishers are already listed as being involved:

Raw Fury, Ubisoft, Tiny Build, Digital Extremes, Telltale Games, Bit Studios, Blue Mammoth Games, Campo Santo, Devolver Digital, Fred Wood, Gambitious, Hi-Rez Studios, Ink Stories, Jackbox Games, Paradox, Proletariat, Versus Evil, Trion Worlds, Vlambeer and Double Fine.

Noticeably absent from the list of launch partners is Electronic Arts, Activision, Square Enix, Bandai Namco, Valve and Riot – all of which are huge publishers, direct distribution competitors or developers of games with huge streaming audiences.

Have your say. What do you think of Twitch’s plan to join the distribution race?