• Jack Stone

Do You Always Have to Use Steam or Epic? A Quick Look at itch.io

When people download or purchase games, Steam or Epic Games is often the go-to choice. Both are clean and efficient choices but can feel a little corporate and boring after a while. Not to mention that if you like a niche game or genre, it can be hard to find it among all of the Triple A-titles and DLC. If you are looking for a break and want to explore some shorter, more indie titles, look no further than itch.io.

itch.io Lets People Be Weird

As long as it does not destroy people’s computers or break the law, itch.io allows people to upload almost anything they want. Crazy unique games are uploaded all the time on the platform. Like short and sweet puzzle games? itch.io has thousands upon thousands of them in different aesthetics for you to spend the night browsing. Like weird and innovative adventure games? itch.io is the home for alternative and low-poly styles.

The design of the webpage also lets developers express their individuality. Rather than have the storefront design the pages, like Steam and Epic Games do, massive storefronts like Steam and Epic Games limit how their store pages look to make quality control easier across the site. On itch.io, developers can build their pages in a way that shows off the unique qualities of their game and advertise better without paying a massive amount of money. It’s fun to skim through pages and see how different people approach presenting their games.

Interacting With The Developers

If you like a game that you just played, it’s super easy to contact the developer and show your appreciation. itch.io offers chat functionality, similar to a YouTube comment section, where people can discuss a game right on the store page and give reviews. For the developer, it is super easy to see what people think about their game. Communities can be built around developers, making the comment section easy to contact people and make new friends. For an industry where many skilled developers and artists are hidden deep in credit scenes, seeing the people who create the games you love is a luxury.

Check Out the Best Games

The front page of itch.io lets you see what everybody else is playing and talking about, letting you stay up-to-date on the hottest and newest trends. The itch.io team also actively curates the front page, showing the best that the site offers on any given day. If you’re willing to try out some new games and styles, the front page will always have something to offer.

Pay-What-You-Want Model

Most games are released for free underneath a pay-what-you-want model. While people can download the game for free, they also can pay the developer however much they want. This payment model for players on a budget means that they can still play great games, while players can reward developers accordingly. While developers may get less income overall, it increases the accessibility of their game and allows players to be more generous with their payments.

What Are You Waiting For?

itch.io is the premier home for groundbreaking indie games made by passionate and dedicated developers. If you’re tired of repetitive Triple-A titles and want to experience new forms of gameplay and expression, itch.io should be the first place you visit. Nowhere else is so much talent collected and pooled together in a single community, and it gets bigger every year. Take an evening to browse the shop and explore what people around the world are thinking!


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