Can Impulse unseat the reigning digital distribution champ Steam? My first impression is... no. I think that Stardock missed the target as to why Steam is so great - the community features. So what do I mean by that? Well for one thing, Impulse doesn't appear to have any way to create groups for people. Creating groups to coordinate clan/guild/friend activities should be a basic feature for any community. Things like intergrated voice chat, group scheduling features and in-game IM support (all features already supported by Steam) would be some great additions. Blogs are nice but do we really need another stage for them?
It will be difficult to recommend installing Impulse as a better alternative for digital distribution over Steam if the community features are lacking. As it stands now, I don't see why anyone would use Impulse other than to play Stardock published titles. I'm not sure what the goal of the good folks at Impulse are, but to increase adoption rates, beefing up the community features are key. If I made any mistakes in this post, I apologize. The Impulse platform looks promising, I look forward to seeing what they have in store for us.