Twitch has announced it will start selling games and in-game content directly through its streaming platform starting this spring. Both developers and Partnered Twitch streamers will be able to get a cut of the money made from game sales, with developers earning 70 per cent of the revenue and streamers getting 5 per cent of sales originating from their individual channel pages.
The service, which should finally provide some healthy competition for Steam, will launch globally this spring with pricing in USD, but Twitch says "localized experiences" will be available later in the year. To draw gamers in even further, Twitch will also reward buyers by giving them a free Twitch Crate of random items, such as exclusive emotes, chat badges and Bits for Cheering.
“Many of our streamers want to make a living doing what they love," said Matt McCloskey, VP of commerce at Twitch.
"To help them, we're enabling game developers to sell game content at the exact time and place their communities are gathered to watch, which in turn lets streamers earn money from games sold on their channels. To ensure everyone benefits, we're also rewarding fans that take part in the program with Twitch Crates."
A lot of studios are already on board with the program, with Ubisoft being the biggest name to announce its support so far, but others such as Telltale Games, Paradox Interactive, Trion Worlds, Vlambeer, tinyBuild, Hi-Rez Studios and Digital Extremes have also signed up.
“For years we have appreciated how supportive Twitch streamers and viewers have been of our games,” said Chris Early, VP of digital publishing at Ubisoft. “This made it an easy decision to work with Twitch to better serve our passionate community with benefits for everyone.”
Steve Allison, SVP of publishing for Telltale Games added: “The Twitch community is a key part of everything we do, from getting the word out about a game we’re launching to maintaining an ongoing dialogue with our fans. By allowing viewers to help support their favorite streamer just by buying a game on Twitch, we’re able to help strengthen the community that has done so much for us.”