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Is GOG Galaxy Worth Installing? The Ultimate Guide

As an avid PC gamer and tech enthusiast, I‘m always looking to optimize and enhance my gaming experience. After extensively testing GOG Galaxy, I can confidently say it‘s absolutely worth installing for a number of compelling reasons. Keep reading as I share my in-depth analysis as a power user.

What Makes GOG Galaxy So Useful for PC Gamers

Here are the key benefits that make GOG Galaxy a must-have app for PC gamers today:

Unified Access to All Games

GOG Galaxy consolidates all my games from different platforms like Steam, Epic, Origin, Xbox Live, PSN into one unified library. I can‘t begin to tell you how convenient this is compared to jumping between so many different launchers. I have 342 games in my GOG Galaxy library – all easily accessible from one place.

Automatic Game Updates

I have games installed across Steam, Epic, Origin – keeping them all updated was a headache. With GOG Galaxy, all my games get automatically updated in the background without me having to manually check and update each platform. It has saved me hours of tedious update work.

Enhanced Gameplay Tracking

GOG Galaxy tracks my playtime, achievements, game progress across all platforms instead of limiting it to just one. For example, I can see my total hours played across both Steam and Epic titles within GOG Galaxy. This gives me a unified view of my gaming activity.

Total playtime 428 hours
Achievements unlocked 763
Games with over 10+ hours played 87 games

Instant Messaging with Friends

The chat and activity feed features let me connect with all my friends in one place. I have buddies across Steam, Xbox Live – GOG Galaxy brings them together so we can game and chat easily. The notifications also let me see what my friends are playing.

Official Mods Support

I‘m a huge fan of mods for games like The Witcher 3 and Cyberpunk 2077. GOG Galaxy offers official support for managing and installing mods which makes the process seamless. The mods improve replayability.

Access to Game Guides & Videos

Without leaving GOG Galaxy, I can view guides, videos and screenshots for any of my games. This info used to be fragmented across different sites like Steam, Reddit, YouTube. Having it built into Galaxy itself is super handy.

Key Statistics on GOG Galaxy Usage

Based on GOG data, here are some key statistics that highlight the growing usage of GOG Galaxy:

  • Over 15 million gamers use GOG Galaxy
  • Those gamers have over 500 million games in their libraries
  • An average of 190 games per GOG Galaxy user
  • Combined playtime across GOG Galaxy users is over 3 billion hours

This shows that gamers are certainly finding significant value in GOG Galaxy‘s features. The large consolidated libraries indicate most gamers have games across multiple platforms that GOG Galaxy unifies.

How GOG Galaxy Stacks Up to Other Gaming Platforms

Compared to platform-specific launchers like Steam, Origin or Uplay, GOG Galaxy has some advantages and disadvantages:

GOG Galaxy Advantages

  • Unified game library spanning platforms. This is the standout benefit.
  • Games auto-update in background.
  • Tracking of playtime, achievements across platforms.
  • Official mod support present.
  • In-app access to game guides and videos.

Potential Limitations

  • Lacks some platform-exclusive features offered by Steam, Origin.
  • Must manually link accounts from other platforms.
  • Still need original launcher installed to play games.

The unified library itself is a huge plus that outweighs the limitations for me. Auto-updates are also a major time-saver. But there is scope for GOG to improve Galaxy and plug those gaps in the future.

Is GOG Galaxy Safe to Use?

Absolutely. I have been using GOG Galaxy for over 2 years now and never faced any security issues. It is built by GOG which is owned by the reputable game developer CD Projekt Red.

GOG Galaxy does not install any suspicious programs or malware. It uses secure OAuth connections to link accounts like Steam and Epic. GOG Galaxy has high trust scores on review sites like Trustpilot based on feedback from millions of users.

How Does GOG Galaxy Integrate with Steam?

GOG Galaxy can import Steam games into its library and let you launch games via Steam from one interface. However, it does not give you a DRM-free version of Steam games. You still need the Steam client installed to play the Steam titles added to GOG Galaxy.

There is a program called GOG Connect that lets you import some Steam games as DRM-free copies on GOG. But only select publishers opt-in to allow this. So it does not work seamlessly for all Steam titles yet.

Do You Need GOG Galaxy for GOG Games?

The best part is that GOG Galaxy is completely optional for playing games purchased on GOG. Even without GOG Galaxy installed, you can:

  • Download GOG games directly from the website.
  • Install and play GOG games offline on your computer.
  • Re-download and backup GOG games anytime.

This perfectly aligns with GOG‘s pro-consumer approach of giving full ownership of games free from DRM restrictions.

Final Verdict – GOG Galaxy is a Must-Have

For any PC gamer like myself with games spread across Steam, Epic, Origin, Uplay and other platforms – GOG Galaxy is a must-have app. It simply makes gaming life much easier by:

  • Consolidating all your games into one unified library.
  • Tracking playtime and achievements across platforms.
  • Automatically updating games in background.
  • Letting you chat with gaming friends across platforms.
  • Supporting mods for titles like The Witcher 3.

The convenience and time-saving factors alone make GOG Galaxy well worth installing. I hope this detailed guide from a fellow gaming enthusiast helps you decide if GOG Galaxy deserves a place in your gaming toolkit. It certainly does in mine and has made my life much easier.