Why would I use Xsolla Launcher when I can create my own?
You don’t want to spend the resources creating your own launcher during the final stage of development or once the game is complete.
How much is Xsolla Launcher going to cost me?
Launcher is a value-added product, meaning access to Launcher is already included in the standard Xsolla fee. Additional costs may appear if you decide to deliver games and updates via Xsolla CDN ($0.01 per GB). However, by using the P2P balancing system, you can cut the costs by 80% on average.
Does the game require Launcher to be running in order to work?
By default, Launcher is always running. When it launches your game, it hides in the system tray so it’s not using up resources. A gamer can shut down Launcher process and the game will still be running as there is no connection during the actual gameplay session.
How does Xsolla Launcher differ from Steam? How is it similar?
Xsolla Launcher acts like a bridge between Steam and a game.
When released on Steam, will everything be downloaded from Launcher? Or will the upload to Steam be the full game + Launcher, and then additional updates fetched from Launcher?
Launcher can do any of the above. You can wrap the latest version of your game into Launcher and then distribute it on Steam, so there are no additional downloads needed (game delivery costs will be on Steam). If you want to quickly deliver an update, you can use Launcher as a fast delivery solution without the need to wrap the game into Launcher, and upload it into Steam again. So it’s up to you.
Do I need to maintain two separate builds for Steam and for a stand-alone? Or is it the same build that gets uploaded to Steam?
No, you won’t need two separate builds. Moreover, if you have both stand-alone and Steam methods of delivery, then Xsolla Launcher will serve you well by collecting your users from both platforms into one database. There is a seamless registration feature, which allows new users who run the game for the first time in Steam to seamlessly pass the registration process as we don’t ask them anything, but at the same time they can go to your official website outside of Steam ecosystem, log in there using Steam OpenID, and become a part of an official/centralized community (e.g. communicate on the forums, discover new games, read news, etc).
I’m using Steam’s tools, including their launcher, and I have no CDN costs to worry about. Why should I take that risk?
You can use Xsolla Launcher while Steam will be paying for CDN and you can distribute your game wrapped into Launcher through Steam. There is no risk, but plenty of benefit, because via Launcher you can communicate with your active community the way you want as it’s fully customizable. You can also collect a users storage, so you can reach this audience outside of the Steam ecosystem and communicate with your fans there.
Do you have a list of CDNs which are pre-integrated with your Launcher? Do I need to contact the companies that provide CDN for further integration? Can I use a CDN which is not on your list?
Yes, Xsolla has a list of the pre-integrated CDNs: G-Core Labs, Akamai. You don’t need to contact any companies providing CDNs pre-integrated with Xsolla Launcher. If you want to use a different CDN, please contact your Account Manager.
Why shouldn’t I just use Solid State Networks?
Solid State Network’s main business is CDN, so their launcher solution isn’t designed to optimize CDN expenses.
Is there some kind of IPC solution in Launcher?
There is no IPC for now, as Launcher doesn’t have features that require IPC communication. We will be adding more features in the future, such as live streaming, and the Store in the overlay that will require IPC (via SDK), so we do have plans to add it.
How can Xsolla Launcher users get access to games? Can games be distributed via subscriptions, coupons or promo codes?
For now, users can only access games by redeeming game keys.
Can Xsolla Launcher users download game updates if they don’t have any game keys purchased?
No. Games and game updates are not available without purchasing game keys.
Is there a solution to connect PCs on the same LAN via P2P connection, so that data would only be transferred within this LAN?
No, there’s no such solution for now.
Does Xsolla Launcher support access levels? For example,
alpha for testing and
beta for end users.
Yes, Xsolla Launcher supports access levels. When uploading your game build, you can select one of the two stages: test for testing or master for end users. To start Launcher with the games published on stage=test, pass the
-game_stage test parameter in the console. For example:
launcher.exe -game_stage test.
What games are displayed in the game list in Xsolla Launcher? All added games or only the ones purchased by a user?
The list contains all the games that have been added to Launcher. The games purchased by a user have the Play button and the rest of the games have the Buy button.
Can particular users get free game keys? How can they use them?
Yes, you can download game keys from Publisher Account and send them to your users for free in any way you wish. The users will be able to activate their keys in Launcher.
Can users be authenticated in games automatically after they authenticate in Launcher?
Yes, there is a solution for automatic in-game authentication. The
--xsolla-login-token parameter is used to send user data from Xsolla Launcher to the game. To get user data, decode the value of the parameter (see the recipe).
Can I send the Launcher download link to users, for example, in the game key activation instruction?
The link to downloading Launcher is not included into the game key activation instruction. To send the link independently:
- Generate the installation file.
- In game keys settings in Publisher Account, upload the installation file as a distribution package for DRM Free.