When it comes to publishers, they don’t come much bigger than Tencent, Chinese owner of Riot Games. Its rosters of titles includes a little something we like to call League of Legends, a game which now has over 100 million active monthly users. Now Tencent has announced plans to launch its own Steam competitor, dubbed WeGame. With 200 million users in China already using its previous Tencent Games Platform, it has the potential to usurp Steam’s total of 125 million active users worldwide within just a matter of days.
In the blink of an eye WeGame could become the largest gaming platform in the world, spurred on by Tencent’s own roster of titles. Tencent is a Chinese investment holding company which has stakes in everything from Activision Blizzard to SuperCell and Epic Games. They’re absolutely enormous, and they’re poised to capitalise on Steam’s limited reach in Asia.
The news comes by way of Nika Partners analyst Daniel Ahmad, who said “Looks like Tencent will rebrand its 'Tencent Games Platform' to 'WeGame'. It's basically Tencent's version of Steam.”
To that end, WeGame will host an ever expanding library of games which can be bought, with the likes of Rocket League, Stardew Valley and Cities Skylines already confirmed. “Tencent bought a few paid standalone games to the platform in 2016 and plan to release 100 new paid games, primarily from Western developers, on the platform in 2017,” explains Ahmad.
Everyone will connect on a single storefront which will be available in multiple languages. Expect the expansion of WeGames to be swift as well - 200 million Chinese players will adopt it almost instantly, and it’s only going to boom from there.
Without a doubt WeGame looks to be the biggest competitor to Steam since its arrival, with the possible exception of the rumoured Amazon Games client. More details on the global launch of WeGame are expected on April 20th, when Tencent will be holding a live conference.
Could Steam be under threat from its biggest competitor yet? Would you ever be tempted to move away from Steam as your primary PC gaming platform?