Brad Wardell's views about technology, politics, religion, world affairs, and all sorts of politically incorrect topics.
Published on February 4, 2008 By Draginol In Personal Computing

Since 1999, Stardock has been a pioneer in digital distribution.  The original Galactic Civilizations was the first PC game to be released at retail and digitally at the same time.  Its flag-ship product, Object Desktop, made the transition from being a retail product to being digitally distributed with a subscription in 1999.

For the past few years, Stardock has distributed its content with Stardock Central:

Stardock Central

And while Stardock Central was very cutting edge when it was launched back in 2003, it's getting a bit long in the tooth.  For the past year, Stardock has been working on a  new platform that will finally combine Stardock's various technological assets into a single place. This new platform is called Impulse.



Impulse isn't just a cosmetic make-over of Stardock Central. It greatly expands the capabilities of Stardock's digital distribution offerings. 

Here are 5 key differentiators of Impulse:

  1. Users do not have to load Impulse to use the software or games.
  2. Impulse will support third-parties submitting their software or game, name their price, and then after review having it available -- all done nearly automatically. Stardock already has this system in place on with "Master" themes.
  3. Impulse will integrate its next-generation social networking features in the Community tab that will let users have friends, chat about games, have blogs, and more.
  4. Impulse includes built in support for backing up your purchase to CD/DVD.
  5. Impulse allows users who buy software or games at retail to still manage their updates and re-download the entire product on Impulse (for products that support this feature).


Impulse provides a cleaner UI than Stardock Central.


Managing your software on Impulse is a snap. If you bought a game or software program at retail or even from another digital distributor, you may be able to still manage updates and such on Impulse.

Impulse is still in internal beta at Stardock but it expects to release it in mid February with additional features for it being added through the course of the year.

Comments (Page 1)
on Feb 04, 2008
The interface looks great. but a couple of questions..

1) Will there be a skin browser?
2) Will there be integrated Chat (IRC)?
3) Will SDC still work in the long term?
on Feb 04, 2008

1) No. Not integrated anyway. As you may have noticed, it's difficult to maintain both the download client and an integrated skin browser.

2) Yes.

3) For quite awhile yes.  SDC won't be disappearing any time soon.

on Feb 04, 2008
This looks great! I'm really interested in the idea of submitting software, is your goal to be an alternative to sites like Plimus and RegNow, or is it still more of a distributor/portal type of deal? I can see how its probably somewhere in between, which would really be a great idea!
on Feb 04, 2008
Cool. Thanks for the quick Reply Frogboy

I drooling over that sweet Interface..
on Feb 04, 2008
This looks like it's gonna be awesome. I can't wait.
on Feb 04, 2008
Looks slick. Don't see the monkey-lizard anywhere tho.....

Is it skinnable?
on Feb 04, 2008
Cool! Reminds me of Steam, but way better looking.
on Feb 04, 2008
looks good
on Feb 04, 2008
Don't see the monkey-lizard anywhere tho
Time to play "find the winky"
on Feb 04, 2008
Time to play "find the winky"

Last time I tried to play that game the mrs smacked me..

on Feb 04, 2008
Time to play "find the winky"

Zu, what you do in your spare time is up to you.......
on Feb 04, 2008
If you have to play find the winky on a regular basis perhaps you should turn off your spam email shields and look for one of those "p3n1s enlargment" emails.
on Feb 04, 2008
looks good

Time to play "find the winky"

Yes, It looks good, but not good enough to prompt one to ... "search for the winky"!  

on Feb 04, 2008
Impulse includes built in support for backing up your purchase to CD/DVD.

on Feb 04, 2008
Sounds good,looks good.  
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