GameStop acquires digital distribution platform Impulse

Over the past year GameStop's company line on digital distribution changed from one dismissive of digital distribution, to one embracing it. Last November's acquisition of Kongregate was just the beginning. The retail giant is clearly planning to challenge Valve's Steam service with its purchase of Impulse from its current owner Stardock.

Steam has dominated the digital distribution marketplace for several years now, and Impulse has been one of its most aggressive competitors. However, despite aggressive sales and a fair number of exclusives, they have trailed Steam alongside Games for Windows Marketplace and Direct2Drive.

The purchase comes alongside the acquisition of Spawn Labs, a company specializing in streaming technology. Judging by GameStop's description of Spawn Labs, it seems that it's also planning on taking on OnLive as well as Steam. “Once the Spawn Labs integration and testing on a new consumer interface is complete, users will have immediate access to a wide selection of high-definition video games on demand on any Internet-enabled device,” said the retailer in a press release.

Apr 1, 2011

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  • cfehunter - April 3, 2011 1:46 a.m.

    Steam will not be dethroned by the likes of gamestop playing at online distribution medium. I'm more interested in what this means for stardock. If they don't own impulse anymore, they're not self publishing. How's that going to effect their design process?
  • SkyNet - April 2, 2011 7:35 a.m.

    **** me I use Impulse. Guess this means prices are going up.
  • dion1013 - April 2, 2011 3:47 a.m.

    Great, just can't escape that bastard company.
  • Sniped50 - April 1, 2011 7:33 p.m.

    Do you think they'll actually be able to knock Steam off it's throne? Because I'm having a hard time seeing that... Mainly beacause it seems a bit much to try and take on multiple online services at the same time, let alone a service in the caliber of Steam.
  • Omrikon - April 1, 2011 6:18 p.m.

    I'm getting a flashback to the South Park episode with Chinpokomon. Except Gamestop is playing the role of Kyle.
  • EnragedTortoise1 - April 1, 2011 5:09 p.m.

    I'm getting a mental image of a fat guy (Gamestop) with a ton of food (companies) in his cart at a grocery store.

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