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As reported by PC Gamer, the Remote Play Together feature was announced on the Steamworks website, which is only accessible to developers, but a couple shared the information publicly. It will enter Steam beta in the week of October 21, where it will allow "two or more players to enjoy local multiplayer games over the internet, together."
Valve’s Alden Kroll says the feature is primarily designed for local split-screen or shared-screen games and works by streaming a host’s screen to their friend, capturing their input, and sending it back to the game running on the host’s machine.
To clarify: it really is only for shared-screen or split-screen games. The tech is streaming your screen to your friend and capturing their input and sending it back to the game, so you are both playing the same game, looking at the same thing.— Alden Kroll GCAP / PAX Australia (@aldenkroll) 10 October 2019
"All local multiplayer, local co-op and split-screen games will be automatically included in the Remote Play Together beta,” reads the announcement.
Other companies have tried to implement something similar. Nvidia's GeForce Experience used to offer GameStream co-op, which, in addition to allowing co-op play over the internet, let friends watch someone else playing a game, and could mirror the controls of a host PC on a guest PC. Sony’s Share Play feature on the PS4 also lets people play with friends as if they were in the same room.
Initial reaction to the feature seems very positive, with many commentators stating they’re looking forward to the arrival of Remote Play Together. It could also give people another reason to side with Steam in its ongoing rivalry with the Epic Games Store.