This year's launch of online streaming service Gaikai will offer publishers and retailers a chance to outdo each other on the emerging digital battleground.
And Andrew Gault, co-founder of Gaikai, says the cloud-gaming firm is in deep discussions with big names from both sides of the divide.
We're speaking to quite a number of retailers, and none of them despise the idea we have,” Gault told MCV this week.
Gaikai offers near-immediate access to demos from the click of a banner advert displayed on various websites.
It was thought that publishers would be the clearest benefactor from Gaikai – allowing them to sell directly to the consumer.
Yet Gault says Gaikai can provide a new, aggressive and effective online strategy for bricks and mortar retail empires.
Gaikai represents a huge change to how publishers and retailers target the market through adverts,” Gault says.
Our service means that online game demos could redirect consumers straight to a retailer's online store.
They could even redirect straight to a webpage with an in-store discount coupon, which the player would print out and take to a shop to buy the retail edition of the game.”
Retail sees how big digital distribution is getting, and they all want to be part of it – they all have web presence, and they all want to sell online now.”
The Gaikai team are now preparing to showcase the service at E3 later this month.