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Forums - Gaming Discussion - What is your opinion on gaming subscription services?

 

My opinion is best summed up as:

Subscribed to at least one and like it 36 36.36%
 
Subscribed to at least one and not a fan 6 6.06%
 
Thinking about subscribing 6 6.06%
 
Was a subscriber and lapsed 4 4.04%
 
Will subscribe for big games and then drop 4 4.04%
 
Zero interest at all 28 28.28%
 
None of the current subs ... 8 8.08%
 
Other 7 7.07%
 
Total:99

As a supplemental piece to diverse the ways to buy video games, it's fine.

Though, it shall never become de defacto way to monetize your content, otherwise it'll get into multiple problems linking to ownership, games preservation and monopolistic greed from leaders in the field.

However, am I interested in it ? Not at all.



Switch Friend Code : 3905-6122-2909 

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Honestly, this is one thing I just fundamentally hate. Like, I don't think it's a bad deal or a bad option...for other people...but I'd never buy into one myself. There are a bunch of reasons why I don't like game subscriptions of any kind, and any one of them would be enough to keep me from buying in.

1 - I already own a sizeable library. I know this isn't the case for most people and many people sell their old games once they're done with them, but this is not the case for me. I have a massive library with a backlog over 100 games. I could never buy another game in my life and I'd likely never run out of things to do.

2 - Furthermore, I'm a collector. When I buy games, I do not get rid of them. Twice in my life I sold games and I regretted it ever since. I sold some SNES games when I Was a kid (For a Genesis) including TMNT: turtles in Time and Battletoads in Battlemaniacs. Bad decision. Second time was some DS games so I could buy Left 4 Dead on Xbox 360. Nowadays, I have an entire room in my house dedicated to gaming and as such I'm happy going back to my old consoles and playing my old as well as new games.

3 - Given the above two points, I tend to also prefer physical media for the most part. I have been replacing much of my collection with digital for the convenience of it all, but I will not get rid of my games or fully replace them.

4 - Given the first two points once more, I also want to play these games on my own time. I tend to pick up and play, then go away for months at a time and owning a subscription service is counterintuitive to that. I also don't buy MMO subs for the same reason. The moment any of this goes on a timer or there's a chance I won't always have access to it, playing it becomes work. a job. an obligation. the second that playing a game is something do on someone else's time, it stops being fun to me. (I rarely play coop games, either for this same reason.)

5 - I don't get to chose what games are on there, which means I'd have to buy a handful of games either way. Plus, as per point 4, if any game I'm playing is being pulled or won't be on there 100% of the time, it stops being something I do for fun and becomes an obligation.

There are more smaller points to consider but those are the big ones for me. All of this combines to make the idea of a game subscription counter to basically everything I like about gaming. Sure, the cost to value ratio is absolutely better than buying a dozen games a year full price, but cost isn't really a factor to me most of the time and I care a lot more about the collecting aspects and the ownership than the access. I like having shelves stocked full of games and movies. I like having a room in my house dedicated to JUST games. I like having a backlog and owning various versions of games. I like having collectors editions and steelbooks and neat little goodies. I like collecting.

I like gaming, but since it's an interactive medium the engagement is wholly different than movies or TV shows. I have no problem watching Netflix or disney+ or whatever...but I don't think that's at all the same as GamePass. I can put a movie on in the background or think nothing of it, but with games it's a more interactive experience and thus requires my time and effort. If that time and effort is put on a clock or in any ways out of my control, it stops being entertainment and starts being work.

So while I absolutely do feel that the dollar value proposition for game services is fantastic, it doesn't fulfil any of the things I like about game collecting and this it's the opposite of what I want in my medium. I have less than zero interest in any of these subscription models and I don't see that changing any time soon.



My Console Library:

PS5, Switch

PS4, PS3, PS2, PS1, WiiU, Wii, GCN, N64 SNES, XBO, 360

3DS, DS, GBA, Vita, PSP, Android

Top 6 this generation: 
Bloodborne, Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice, God of War, The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, Dark Souls III, Red Dead Redemption II, Rock Band 4

IcaroRibeiro said:

People do what their habits teach them. For people over their 30 maybe streaming will never be a thing, but for kids who will start playing on streaming buying games will be pointless once they becomes grown ups and starting buying things for themselves 

Do you know how most of people used to consume music? It wasn't renting, it was buying because a song isn't something you listen one week and then get bored of it, music is something you buy today and keep listening for years 

Yet everybody adapted to streaming really fast, because streaming is readily available. As long the music is avaible people will subscribe, it's not like singers will take their library from services

For games, it will be the same. Subscriptions are fairly new and buying still common, big players and publishers don't have their stabilished services yet, but once the market consolidates (probably will take more 7-8 years) customers will start to trust some games will be avaible in the service forever and then they will naturally move away from buying until buying start being a niche habit just like buying CDs and some publishers will barely bother releasing physical media unless it's for a premium price like vinyls, then customers will need to choose between paying the premium price for their physicals or just engaging in the cheaper media for mass consumption 

I still buy music, went from recording from the radio, renting movies, renting books, pirating games, to buying music (still buy CDs), books, movies and games all physical, so not everybody!

It is annoying that it's much harder nowadays to find music, books, movies and next games in stores :( As well as finding them online to order, still no S4 Expanse released here. Import for a hefty fee :/

So nope, not a fan of subscription services and no plans to ever adapt to them. I simply 'consume' less nowadays, spend more time with fewer games.

Last edited by SvennoJ - on 25 April 2021

Subbed to Gamepass Ultimate and love it. It has saved me so much money already, and will save me even more in the future with Microsoft releasing several dozen 1st, 2nd and 3rd party games day one on Gamepass over the course of this generation, with hundreds more releasing on the service which won't be day one releases.

Last edited by shikamaru317 - on 25 April 2021

SvennoJ said:
IcaroRibeiro said:

People do what their habits teach them. For people over their 30 maybe streaming will never be a thing, but for kids who will start playing on streaming buying games will be pointless once they becomes grown ups and starting buying things for themselves 

Do you know how most of people used to consume music? It wasn't renting, it was buying because a song isn't something you listen one week and then get bored of it, music is something you buy today and keep listening for years 

Yet everybody adapted to streaming really fast, because streaming is readily available. As long the music is avaible people will subscribe, it's not like singers will take their library from services

For games, it will be the same. Subscriptions are fairly new and buying still common, big players and publishers don't have their stabilished services yet, but once the market consolidates (probably will take more 7-8 years) customers will start to trust some games will be avaible in the service forever and then they will naturally move away from buying until buying start being a niche habit just like buying CDs and some publishers will barely bother releasing physical media unless it's for a premium price like vinyls, then customers will need to choose between paying the premium price for their physicals or just engaging in the cheaper media for mass consumption 

I still buy music, went from recording from the radio, renting movies, renting books, pirating games, to buying music (still buy CDs, books, movies and games all physical) so not everybody!

It is annoying that it's much harder nowadays to find music, books, movies and next games in stores :( As well as finding them online to order, still no S4 Expanse released here. Import for a hefty fee :/

So nope, not a fan of subscription services and no plans to ever adapt to them. I simply 'consume' less nowadays, spend more time with fewer games.

I'm still a physical album and books buyer as well, yes it's much harder to find. Almost every bookstore is closing now, but well I also love my kindle and I even subscribe the amazon reading service even though I don't use it that much and mostly read digitals versions ok books I've bought

I also love physical games. I need fo pay over 80 USD to keep my imported Nintendo physical games because this company aren't even bothering giving proper physical releases for their games here  at least I can buy some Sony physical games for reasonable price

Overall, I understand subscription is screwing me as a collector, but I still loving it. I'm a music fan, do you know how many whole discographies I could listen thanks to Spotify ? Before it I was a shameless torrent user, used to download three different albums every week only because If I was going to buy any song I wanted to give a try I would end spending over 2k USD a year. This business model allow me to listen whatever I want, digest and then buy the overpriced CD versions only for the albums I find worth it. If one day I have a big house and enough cash I'll try to collect vinyls as well, but most important subscription system is making my favorite hobby finally accessible like it was never before just like I know GP is making gaming accessible for people who could never afford trying so many games like they can now. So, how can I be opposed to it? 



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IcaroRibeiro said:

I'm still a physical album and books buyer as well, yes it's much harder to find. Almost every bookstore is closing now, but well I also love my kindle and I even subscribe the amazon reading service even though I don't use it that much and mostly read digitals versions ok books I've bought

I also love physical games. I need fo pay over 80 USD to keep my imported Nintendo physical games because this company aren't even bothering giving proper physical releases for their games here  at least I can buy some Sony physical games for reasonable price

Overall, I understand subscription is screwing me as a collector, but I still loving it. I'm a music fan, do you know how many whole discographies I could listen thanks to Spotify ? Before it I was a shameless torrent user, used to download three different albums every week only because If I was going to buy any song I wanted to give a try I would end spending over 2k USD a year. This business model allow me to listen whatever I want, digest and then buy the overpriced CD versions only for the albums I find worth it. If one day I have a big house and enough cash I'll try to collect vinyls as well, but most important subscription system is making my favorite hobby finally accessible like it was never before just like I know GP is making gaming accessible for people who could never afford trying so many games like they can now. So, how can I be opposed to it? 

Kind of a contradiction!

I've pirated music, movies and games as well when I had more time than ways to fund my hobby. However, most grow out of that phase and realize it's not only much nicer to own it in physical form but also feels better than de facto stealing.

Subscription services do not encourage that transition, they're designed to get you hooked on them and not let you go, or you collection / play lists / trophies and what not are all gone.

So while it's nice GP is making gaming accessible for people who can't afford to try out many new things, there's no reason to ever move on from subscription services. Which is bad for collectors like you and me. Some stuff will still come out and maybe some things will make a resurgence like vinyl. (I never bought into vinyl, it's not better than CD, CD is better than MP3 though) Most will become harder to get and more expensive. Games will change more towards episodic and evolving game worlds to keep you hooked, but also turn it into keep up or the game will be completely different or even gone when you get back.

As for Kindle, never. I grab a book to get away from screens!

I used to spend over 2K USD on movies, first Laserdiscs, then DVD, then Blu-ray. I bought plenty just to try out. However now prices are up, non mainstream movies are much harder to find or take a long time to order. Renting never interfered with collecting, streaming is putting a huge strain on it. A lot of stores here don't even sell music nor movies anymore. Only specialized stores are left where you pay a premium. And I'm not looking forward to see what's left after this pandemic is over :/ It wouldn't be so bad if Amazon was not also affected, and they also want you to get Prime and go stream.



SvennoJ said:
IcaroRibeiro said:

I'm still a physical album and books buyer as well, yes it's much harder to find. Almost every bookstore is closing now, but well I also love my kindle and I even subscribe the amazon reading service even though I don't use it that much and mostly read digitals versions ok books I've bought

I also love physical games. I need fo pay over 80 USD to keep my imported Nintendo physical games because this company aren't even bothering giving proper physical releases for their games here  at least I can buy some Sony physical games for reasonable price

Overall, I understand subscription is screwing me as a collector, but I still loving it. I'm a music fan, do you know how many whole discographies I could listen thanks to Spotify ? Before it I was a shameless torrent user, used to download three different albums every week only because If I was going to buy any song I wanted to give a try I would end spending over 2k USD a year. This business model allow me to listen whatever I want, digest and then buy the overpriced CD versions only for the albums I find worth it. If one day I have a big house and enough cash I'll try to collect vinyls as well, but most important subscription system is making my favorite hobby finally accessible like it was never before just like I know GP is making gaming accessible for people who could never afford trying so many games like they can now. So, how can I be opposed to it? 

Kind of a contradiction!

I've pirated music, movies and games as well when I had more time than ways to fund my hobby. However, most grow out of that phase and realize it's not only much nicer to own it in physical form but also feels better than de facto stealing.

Subscription services do not encourage that transition, they're designed to get you hooked on them and not let you go, or you collection / play lists / trophies and what not are all gone.

So while it's nice GP is making gaming accessible for people who can't afford to try out many new things, there's no reason to ever move on from subscription services. Which is bad for collectors like you and me. Some stuff will still come out and maybe some things will make a resurgence like vinyl. (I never bought into vinyl, it's not better than CD, CD is better than MP3 though) Most will become harder to get and more expensive. Games will change more towards episodic and evolving game worlds to keep you hooked, but also turn it into keep up or the game will be completely different or even gone when you get back.

As for Kindle, never. I grab a book to get away from screens!

I used to spend over 2K USD on movies, first Laserdiscs, then DVD, then Blu-ray. I bought plenty just to try out. However now prices are up, non mainstream movies are much harder to find or take a long time to order. Renting never interfered with collecting, streaming is putting a huge strain on it. A lot of stores here don't even sell music nor movies anymore. Only specialized stores are left where you pay a premium. And I'm not looking forward to see what's left after this pandemic is over :/ It wouldn't be so bad if Amazon was not also affected, and they also want you to get Prime and go stream.

I know right? But alas, sometimes we like contradictory things. I can't call myself a collector by any means as I don't have enough financial resources to it, I collect what I can afford I abandoned my piracy habits when I get my first full paid job, but it was only 4 years ago and I still pirating some animes and mangas, but mostly because they don't have official release here, but just for the record I have about over 600 different manga volumes and I'm starting to running out of space to put them together lol 

And maybe those 2k a year seems ok-ish for a north American worker from USA or Canada, but I'm just a Brazilian guy, 2k is about the median 6-month income of a Brazilian worker. Unfortunately most of the media I like is from either USA or Asia (mainly Japan and Korea), so accessibility and low price will always be a factor over some of my whims

I can also try to advocate for other fellow producers and consumers from emerging markets! 

With a mass-consumption subscription service companies can try to put more people spending money into a specific hobby because now every penny can produce some value. That's how music industry was saved from the extinction it was heading to, you may reduce the revenue from European, American and Japanese markets (usually the ones that spend a lot purchasing music as well as games, theatrical box office, etc) but otherwise saw a massive increasing in emergent markets Latam, China, Southeastern Asia, India, middle west. Don't think the sudden influx of kpop bands and Latin music flooding Spotify charts are just a circumstances. Today we just saw a Demon Slayer film breaking the record of the highest grossing non-English movie first weekend box office in North America. Ok, Japan isn't exactly an "emergent market" but I think you understand streaming services are making anime even more popular and accessible right? 



Mixed feelings I don't mind subs mixed with other content access options ,but I also detest content that is only accessible by a sub paywall, other downsides are finding your interests/purchases that may add up in some cases to years of not just financial but emotional investment suddenly behind a sub, then there can be the splintering effect of needing multiple subs for items that were once found in one place, another downside is timed availability and also the fact that its likely that the gamepasses of the future will bemade strong enough through locking up content to make it so they can push up the cost while making it the only way to use the platforms.



Saving money is saving money and if that's subbing to a "gaming subscription service" then so be it. The idea of "loosing access if your subscrition lapses" ... The way I look at it, if the service is good like Game Pass I'll stay subbed (in Game Pass' case I've already max my subscription till 2024) and if it's bad then I'll let it lapse so in that case losing access isn't a problem. 



Wheel me out to the curb for garbage day

IcaroRibeiro said:

I know right? But alas, sometimes we like contradictory things. I can't call myself a collector by any means as I don't have enough financial resources to it, I collect what I can afford I abandoned my piracy habits when I get my first full paid job, but it was only 4 years ago and I still pirating some animes and mangas, but mostly because they don't have official release here, but just for the record I have about over 600 different manga volumes and I'm starting to running out of space to put them together lol 

And maybe those 2k a year seems ok-ish for a north American worker from USA or Canada, but I'm just a Brazilian guy, 2k is about the median 6-month income of a Brazilian worker. Unfortunately most of the media I like is from either USA or Asia (mainly Japan and Korea), so accessibility and low price will always be a factor over some of my whims

I can also try to advocate for other fellow producers and consumers from emerging markets! 

With a mass-consumption subscription service companies can try to put more people spending money into a specific hobby because now every penny can produce some value. That's how music industry was saved from the extinction it was heading to, you may reduce the revenue from European, American and Japanese markets (usually the ones that spend a lot purchasing music as well as games, theatrical box office, etc) but otherwise saw a massive increasing in emergent markets Latam, China, Southeastern Asia, India, middle west. Don't think the sudden influx of kpop bands and Latin music flooding Spotify charts are just a circumstances. Today we just saw a Demon Slayer film breaking the record of the highest grossing non-English movie first weekend box office in North America. Ok, Japan isn't exactly an "emergent market" but I think you understand streaming services are making anime even more popular and accessible right? 

I don't know. I quit buying anime as it became harder to get here... I wasn't a big collector of it (yet) anyway, got a couple incomplete series, mostly collect movies. However also my anime movie shelf has been static for years. I don't find it in stores anymore, thus no more exposure. I hate browsing menus like Netflix, but would go over shelves in stores / rental places for well over an hour. I loved browsing book stores, amazon selections online have me turned away within minutes. Maybe that's just me, digital menus suck.

Music still makes a lot of money from venues and digital sales. And did streaming really save music?

https://www.nytimes.com/2021/03/22/technology/streaming-music-economics.html

Shira: How has streaming changed the music industry?

Ben: It’s been the industry’s salvation. Largely because of Spotify and other subscriptions, streaming provided the industry something it never had before: regular monthly revenue.

To oversimplify, the big winners are the streaming services and the large record companies. The losers are the 99 percent of artists who aren’t at Beyoncé’s level of fame. And they’re angry about not sharing in the music industry’s success.

There's you tube at least for the smaller artists, money from ads.