GOG Galaxy 2.0 unified game library - First impressions from the closed beta

Written by Jon Sutton on Wed, Jun 26, 2019 3:19 PM

With the absolute mess that game storefronts and launchers are in right now, I was inordinately excited to see an invite to the GOG Galaxy 2.0 closed beta finally plop into my inbox. A new gaming client isn’t exactly at the top of my wishlist, you see, but GOG Galaxy 2’s relatively unique promise is a simple one - unify all of your gaming clients, libraries, and friends lists into a single spot.

The first thing to get out of the way is yep, it absolutely does work. Within about five minutes of installing GOG Galaxy 2.0, I’d managed to link it up every possible type of account. GOG Galaxy now pulls in all of the games I own across GOG.com, Battle.net, Epic, Origin, Uplay, Steam, Xbox, and even PlayStation.

If you want to pull in custom platforms then this is theoretically possible. That stack of NES ROMs you’ve got lurking, or whatever it may be. GOG has created an integrations API for this purpose that’s available on GitHub, although community members will be free to make their own integration systems with box art etc and share them.

For now, though, I’ve kept it strictly to the games I own across the eight core integrations. GOG Galaxy tells me I've got 774 games in total, and then I'm free to filter them by platform, OS, and genre. It's quick, it's intuitive and, barring a few missing artworks, it works.

Some of these, like PlayStation and a few Xbox titles, don’t even run on PC. I’m already finding it a handy, unified way to remind myself of what PS4 games I may own though, for example. Ultimately I do need to turn my PS4 on to even install these games, but as far as automatic integration goes it’s decent. Interestingly,  the API even manages to pull in trophy data and the like, so I can look at my Bloodborne trophy progress from within GOG Galaxy 2.0. What a world.

As far as GOG Galaxy 2.0 goes at this stage, it’s functional rather than spectacular. It does do exactly what GOG promised though - unify your gaming library. It’s all there, right in one place with the minimum of effort.

While not available right now in the current version of the beta, an upcoming feature will allow users to toggle a setting which automatically shut down a gaming client when the game is closed.

Booting up games will also begin running the appropriate launcher in the background. You can also set the likes of Steam and Uplay to automatically shut down once a game has closed. Out of sight, out of mind and all that. 

Considering we're still in the beta phase though, I have to say I'm impressed with what I see of GOG Galaxy 2.0 so far. There doesn't seem to be the option to invite Steam friends just yet, although I'm assuming that's going to be implemented at some point. Aside from that though it's quick and functional, although relatively heavyweight (~400MB typical RAM usage). It's very neat to see all of my Epic Store games I've grabbed for free, for example, without having to actually bother opening the Epic Games client.

It's easy to see how this could eventually become someone's natural home for PC gaming. The benefit to GOG.com, of course, is that the only games you can actually buy directly through the client are from GOG's own store. For many people, Steam is their de facto home, but GOG Galaxy 2.0 certainly does a better job than anything else of making leaving easier.

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06:08 Jun-27-2019

finally GOG becoming something good near the level of steam.

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20:52 Jun-26-2019

How does it work with passwords? Does it just load up the other client to the sign in page, and then you have to do everything manually from there?

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22:01 Jun-26-2019

Yes it will just launch the launchers. So you need to login once to those with the keep signed in option enabled.

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19:21 Jun-26-2019

This is the kind of thing that Steam should be doing to fight back against Epic, or that Epic should be doing instead of just buying lots and lots of exclusives. GOG truly is the superior store, and app. If only more big publishers and developers would give up on DRM and move over to GOG. What a world it would be if in 5 years GOG and Steam switched positions in the market.

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22:02 Jun-26-2019

I am pretty sure egs wouldn't allow integration with steam. Also steam is still a better client overall than gog galaxy 2 atm. For example the steam workshop is just great.

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01:40 Jun-27-2019

Sorry, let me clarify what I meant in my last sentence. I would love to see GOG keep innovating to the point where GOG is as big as Steam is now. Steam doesn't deserve to be the big guy anymore.

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21:34 Jun-28-2019

why is that

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21:51 Jun-28-2019

They're slacking. They let algorithms do all the work, they let anyone put any game on there, they don't curate, and they just don't care. There's been little no innovation on Steam in the past 5 years. You don't see Steam doing anything to fight what's going on in the market with Epic games. They just don't deserve to be the big guy anymore. Steam is only big because people are lazy and complacent.

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13:18 Jul-04-2019

Why would you want steam to curate their store its like saying to game companies you can't sell games on our store unless steam or some group of people allow you to (or unless you bribe someone that does make those decisions) there is no downside to allowing as many games on steam and now they have refund only argument is to defend people from buying bad games.

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13:39 Jul-04-2019

And even that is not good argument be cause point of the game is to have fun there are -1/10 games that people would consider garbage but someone may have fun playing that game.

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03:55 Jul-05-2019

Even Walmart curates the crap the sell... Sorry, that's not relevant, it's just funny. Seriously though, I've stopped buying indie games on Steam unless a friend suggests it to me because I don't want to wade through all the **** games. There are plenty of people just like me. There are devs that won't put their stuff on Steam because of that. It's a loss for us and a loss for the devs, the only winner is Valve.

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11:55 Jul-06-2019

So if steam were to curate their games you would immediately buy every game that was on steam? If game is good people who bought it will recommend it if its bad people who bought it wont recommend it. Even if steam curated so that only top 1% best games in the world could get on steam you would not buy all of those games be cause they are considered good

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22:53 Jul-06-2019

I wouldn't buy every one of them, no, but I would buy a lot more of them. As it sits I don't buy indie games unless they come personally recommended to me by a friend. I used to buy indie games all the time, but I don't want to wade through all the garbage. Curation is not the same as censorship.

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11:58 Jul-06-2019

And i dont know if Walmart curates their stuff and its much different when you have limited physical space to store stuff. And on the other hand steam sales and walmart sales work completely different steam doesn't have to buy copies from game dev and then sell it at profit like walmart and other physical steam and dev earn money when copy is sold.

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22:51 Jul-06-2019

The Walmart part was a joke, lol.

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18:10 Jun-26-2019

Jon,


Does the client have any stuttering? Is it pretty fluid changing to different tabs?

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09:05 Jun-27-2019

Nice and fast to my eyes, didn't notice any stuttering and it's quick to load in all the artworks even though there are hundreds

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18:22 Jun-28-2019

Thanks for the reply. Must have some good programmers at GOG :)

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11:52 Jun-30-2019

They have, GOG belongs to CD Project RED

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16:05 Jun-26-2019

Doesn't Steam basically do this anyways? You simply add a non steam game and it boots up with steam right?

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18:52 Jun-26-2019

Steam doesn't do it automatically and you need to have a game installed in order for it to be recognised

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15:49 Jun-26-2019

I'm already using playnite tu unify all my clients and it's pretty good already keeping track of game time and everything. I won't switch even tho this looks great ^^

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23:32 Jun-26-2019

I have Playnite as well. There was an article a while back suggesting ways of unifying clients with that included. I will probably switch to Galaxy 2.0 because I have GoG's client anyway.

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15:36 Jun-26-2019

Wow, looks very good! Can't wait to give it a try!
But do you really have, or will have, any other options regarding interacting with your games aside from clicking "Play" and issuing a launch command to Steam or Uplay, for example?
If you want to install a game, will GoG 2.0 allow you to see the download progress, or even allow you to download to another folder? That's one of the things that would make it very useful imo.

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15:36 Jun-26-2019

Great stuff, can't wait for this to go live...

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