Humble Bundle, the company behind the eponymous regular pay-what-you-want game collections, has expanded its horizons with the launch of the Humble Store.
Founded in 2010, Humble Bundle got its start by offering games from small independent studios. Its first bundle, known as the Humble Indie Bundle, brought together Word of Goo, Aquaria, Gish, Penumbra: Overture, and Lugaru, soon followed by Samarost 2 in what would become a tradition of adding additional content in the last week of a bundle's run.
Unlike traditional stores, the Humble Bundle had a hook: you could pay as much or little as you liked for the games, which were provided cross-platform on Windows, OS X and Linux and free from restrictive digital rights management. Although some effort was put in to ensure gamers parted with as much money as possible - including 'bonus' games which would only unlock if you beat the rolling average payment and a leaderboard that would see gamers compete to spend the most money - it emerged as a cheap way to get some well-received games.
The most unique feature of the Humble Bundle offering, however, was not in the pay-what-you-want principle itself but in allowing the buyer to specify how the money would be split. By default, a portion goes to the original developer and a portion to Humble Bundle itself with a remaining chunk being donated to charity; using interactive sliders on the purchase page, buyers could override this split in any way their saw fit.
Recently, Humble Bundle has been moving away from its roots. The company has begun partnering with big-name publishers like Warner Brothers to offer DRM-locked titles without Linux, and in some cases OS X, support. It has also begun offering regular Weekly Sales, in which a single title is chosen as a pay-what-you-want offering.
Now, it has decided to take on the like of Steam with a storefront of its own dubbed the Humble Store. Unlike the Humble Bundles, games available on the Humble Store will be listed permanently with no time limit for purchasing. An extension to Humble Bundle's sales platform for independent developers, the Humble Store includes discount offers which change daily and - as with the Bundles - a percentage of the proceeds going to charity. Unlike the Bundles, however, the prices are fixed and the split - which sees 10 per cent of the purchase price going to charity - is not user-adjustable.
Titles available in the store, which is running a launch-day sale of up to 75 per cent off its titles for the next eight hours, include Prison Architect Alpha, Don't Starve, The Swapper, Gunpoint, and Orcs Must Die! 2. All games include Steam keys. The full list is available on the official Humble Store site