Good Old Games (or GOG.com) is well known for its massive DRM-free catalog of PC games ranging from today's bestsellers to classic titles from decades past. Today, the website expanded beyond its virtual storefront with the open beta launch of a new platform called GOG Galaxy (opens in new tab).
Galaxy presents itself as a more in-depth version of the GOG website. All of your games from GOG are added to the library where you can activate features such as the ability to create a backup copy of the game, turn off automatic updates and the ability to play offline. In the future, users can also revert to a past update of the game if the current update creates problems during gameplay.
As for the gameplay itself, Galaxy offers features to enrich the experience such as achievements and multiplayer support. One notable feature about Galaxy's multiplayer system is that it allows crossplay between games on Galaxy and Steam. This means that if you play a game through Galaxy that features multiplayer, you can play it with friends who play the same game on Steam.
Just like its DRM-free approach to games, GOG doesn't want to restrict its players to just the GOG community through multiplayer, so allowing crossplay is a very definitive feature for the platform. As for the online community itself, Galaxy offers services such as chat, and it allows players to join or invite other players to games.
All that Galaxy has to offer is very reminiscent of Valve's Steam platform. It's no secret that the two companies are competitors in the PC gaming space, and the addition of Galaxy is another way for GOG to attract customers, but the best aspect of Galaxy is that it's all optional.
If you do use it, you can choose to activate certain features while keeping others off. In fact, you don't even have to use Galaxy at all for games bought at GOG. The website already comes with a library where you can download your purchases. On the other hand, any game you buy through Valve has to be played on Steam, but it's the exact opposite case for GOG.
The company's DRM-free claim has been its biggest selling point for years, allowing customers to have complete control over their games. Users can still use GOG as just a marketplace, but for those who want to get more out of it, Galaxy might be something worth downloading.