After striking a blow at iTunes with Amazon MP3 in late 2007, Amazon has now taken its first step into the brave new world of digital game distribution. Rather than compete with Valve's Steam service head-on, though, Amazon has decided to start small: the Game Downloads section on the Amazon website includes only casual PC games priced at $9.99 or less.
Amazon's selection includes over 600 games, from classics like Risk to more obscure titles with names you've probably never heard of before. The Amazon Games & Software Downloader is a requirement for game downloads, and Amazon offers free, limited trials of all available titles.
Judging by what Amazon Video Games and Software VP Greg Hart told Kotaku this morning, casual games are only a first step, however. Hart says casual games naturally fit Amazon's demographic, but he adds, "We always want to offer the widest selection possible, just like we've done with our boxed games over the past two years." (Thanks to Shacknews for the tip.)