Less is more - subscription services and their "romset effect"

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italygamer

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#1  Edited By italygamer
Member since 2009 • 668 Posts

Gaming subscription services are by now a reality and the already predicted Netflix streaming model is approaching the video game industry sooner than most thought. It was just a matter of time and a natural consequence.

Subscription services have a big psychological effect on most people, as it feels fairly inexpensive and allows pretty much anybody to gain access to a big library of content. This model's worked for music and movies and I'm pretty sure it'll work for a more complex medium such games as well, as tech gets finely tuned to reduce isseus related to the gaming experience (internet speed, resolution, latency, etc...).

The biggest problem I see in all of this is "quantity", in terms of how much we will have at disposal and how easy it will be to just choose among hundreds/thousands of games and fire them up in a blink of an eye.

When I say less is more, I mean what I just said above, as I'm afraid that having so much, too much, that we probably will have no time experience will create sooner or later a sense of dissatisfaction, every game will hold less value and we'll easily jump from one title to the other, to the detriment of the enjoyment of the single experience.

It'll be even worse than those backlogs that some of us are overwhelmed with and for which we fight to find time to experience, or just leave those in the backburner.

What do you guys think?

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qx0d

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#2 qx0d
Member since 2018 • 333 Posts

I wouldn't want to subscribe to a subscription service. Most movies on Netflix, Hulu, etc, I wouldn't even want to watch.

I just want to own a physical copy of the game/movie I want.

Subscription is mostly a waste of money.

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I_P_Daily

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#3 I_P_Daily
Member since 2015 • 12837 Posts

@qx0d said:

I wouldn't want to subscribe to a subscription service. Most movies on Netflix, Hulu, etc, I wouldn't even want to watch.

I just want to own a physical copy of the game/movie I want.

Subscription is mostly a waste of money.

This ^

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ProtossRushX

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#4 ProtossRushX
Member since 2007 • 5707 Posts
@qx0d said:

I wouldn't want to subscribe to a subscription service. Most movies on Netflix, Hulu, etc, I wouldn't even want to watch.

I just want to own a physical copy of the game/movie I want.

Subscription is mostly a waste of money.

agree man can't wait till these subscriptions services die out

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Ten_Pints

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#5  Edited By Ten_Pints
Member since 2014 • 3934 Posts

They are not going to die out.

The culture of leasing or renting things started long before subscription services because people suck at basic maths. It was never about being affordable in the long run, it's about instant gratification.

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#6 npiet1
Member since 2018 • 2556 Posts

Subscription is so much cheaper for me. I buy 1-3 games a month so that's some where between $50 and $180. I have kids, that are gamers aswell. So if I only pay $10 a month for a heap of games it works out a lot cheaper. I've got Gp which the kids use often. I've got Hulu and Netflix that the kids and misses use. I've worked it all out before. It cost me the same amount once I had the internet bill but I use that a lot more for things other than games.

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DaVillain-

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#7 DaVillain-  Moderator
Member since 2014 • 38491 Posts

Who the hell would want to pay Cable TV in this dying age? I have Netflix/Amazon Prime/Crunchyroll all sub and I can watch whatever I want and whatever time and it's way cheaper then the average Cable TV could provide me. Owning physical movies is still a thing but I mainly sometimes buy Blu-Ray+Digital combo on certain movies I know I'll watch again & again just for fun and stuff. Subbing to movies i find to be more convenience on my end and way better then Cable TV and who the hell still pays Cable TV? Well maybe my Mother and older family lines but that's to be expected, their old as hell.

Now, subbing to games such as Game Pass, EA Origin, and all that have benefits from me and since I went total digital this gen (besides on anything from Nintendo) I sub to just Game Pass & EA Origin for the games I sure will never buy on digital, so subs have their place and advantages. I'll just list the subs I now have:

  • Netflix
  • Amazon Prime
  • Crunchyroll
  • Game Pass
  • EA Origin

As you can see, only sub to what you may used the most and I do use those subs above the most and take advantages on their offering as much as I can. The key is, try to see what you will use all the time and not all the time cause you will be wasting money if you aren't using the sub such as Netflix.

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True_Link

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#8 True_Link
Member since 2019 • 243 Posts

I think I'll stick to my tried and true way to approach games: one game at a time until I finish it.

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aia89

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#9  Edited By aia89
Member since 2009 • 2827 Posts

It's worth it to those who game a lot, or if you want to try games out before buying them, since demo's are not a thing anymore.

I used to get that "romset effect" until I educated myself to use things systematically, without surrounding myself with too much choice, that way it's easier for me to savor each and every game I try.

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pyro1245

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#10 pyro1245
Member since 2003 • 5359 Posts

Subscriptions make a lot of sense for me

  • I buy several games per month so even if I subbed to 10 different services I would still save money
  • I've already used Game Pass to determine that I don't like many of the games I was interested in - so more money saved on games I will have bought and not played
  • I am not burdened by the concept of ownership and I understand that all I am buying is a license
  • Most games these days aren't even shipped as complete on disc and will require updates to function properly
  • Selling games is a rip-off
  • I'd rather just download whatever I want and try it without worrying about the value proposition - I usually only stick with the games I really like, and I'm not going to force myself to play a game I'm not enjoying just because I paid $60 for it.

It's likely that buying a permanent licence will still be a thing. What? Are publishers just not going to accept $60 anymore because their game is also on a sub service?

And I'm not sold on the quantity/quality argument. I would never try to watch all the shows and movies on Netflix. I have a Netflix sub because I know I want to watch about 1% of what is available. I will sub to a game service if there is a game I want to play, and if we use Game Pass $10/mo as an example - I'd have to play the game for 6 months before it would have made sense to just buy it at full price. There are very few games I will put that much time into - and I will know when I see it (for example if TESVI is still modding-friendly when it comes out. I will buy that at full price).

I also dislike the concept of the 'backlog'. Why force yourself to play through other games when you know you'd rather play another one? Just play what you want - life is short. Backlogs should be fluid and change as you want. The idea of this hobby is enjoyment, not an exercise in discipline.

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foxhound_fox

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#11 foxhound_fox
Member since 2005 • 98066 Posts

You must not work for a living, or not work very much. I work 60-70 hours a week (truck driver) and am away from home 5-6 days at a time. If I get 2-3 hours to play games on the weekends, I feel like that's a lot.

A subscription service would be great, so I don't have to spend $79.99 CAD on a single game only to play 5-6 hours of it in total over several months.

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aia89

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#12  Edited By aia89
Member since 2009 • 2827 Posts
@foxhound_fox said:

You must not work for a living, or not work very much. I work 60-70 hours a week (truck driver) and am away from home 5-6 days at a time. If I get 2-3 hours to play games on the weekends, I feel like that's a lot.

A subscription service would be great, so I don't have to spend $79.99 CAD on a single game only to play 5-6 hours of it in total over several months.

Doesn't that defy your point though? If you only have little time to invest every month, a subscription service will cost you more than buying the games you wanna play over a long period of time. It's like paying for Netflix and using it only once in a while, you're just donating money to them that way.

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Star67

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#13 Star67
Member since 2005 • 4477 Posts

I think it would be an interesting study for sure, sometimes an over quantity of titles can be overwhelming and diminish the value of the game. AT least psychologically.

I'm an avid game collector, I have over 1000 physically released video games, and I struggle to find the time to play all of them, and at times I feel over whelmed about the amount of choices I have on my shelf. I can't imagine having 1000's more to play; pick up and go.

But LIKE Records for Music, I think Physical games are here to stay for a while, they will be for the avid collector and more about the experience of playing a video game

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#14 xantufrog  Moderator
Member since 2013 • 11746 Posts

@aia89 said:
@foxhound_fox said:

You must not work for a living, or not work very much. I work 60-70 hours a week (truck driver) and am away from home 5-6 days at a time. If I get 2-3 hours to play games on the weekends, I feel like that's a lot.

A subscription service would be great, so I don't have to spend $79.99 CAD on a single game only to play 5-6 hours of it in total over several months.

Doesn't that defy your point though? If you only have little time to invest every month, a subscription service will cost you more than buying the games you wanna play over a long period of time. It's like paying for Netflix and using it only once in a while, you're just donating money to them that way.

Yup, I only have a few hours of gaming a week and that's why a subscription service is a BAD option for me. People wax on and on about the "free" games from PS+ and XBL, but that shit would just sit in my profile as I progressively get farther and farther behind.

To me, with my limited game time, a subscription service is paying for games each month I can't possibly play. Much better to buy a single game when I'm ready for it

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Raining51

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#15 Raining51
Member since 2016 • 1145 Posts

Subscription services suck they are expensive period... we are the stage in arguments around the globe where it's like wind is not wind, it's really rain...

............

I just don't know what to ay say anymore as a response...

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#16 foxhound_fox
Member since 2005 • 98066 Posts

@xantufrog said:
@aia89 said:

Doesn't that defy your point though? If you only have little time to invest every month, a subscription service will cost you more than buying the games you wanna play over a long period of time. It's like paying for Netflix and using it only once in a while, you're just donating money to them that way.

Yup, I only have a few hours of gaming a week and that's why a subscription service is a BAD option for me. People wax on and on about the "free" games from PS+ and XBL, but that shit would just sit in my profile as I progressively get farther and farther behind.

To me, with my limited game time, a subscription service is paying for games each month I can't possibly play. Much better to buy a single game when I'm ready for it

But buying a game, playing it for 6 hours (and not finishing it), then trading it in isn't cost-effective. I have a very limited gaming budget and a wide swath of titles I'm interested in playing. A subscription service will allow me to play the games I want in the time I have.

Buying a $90.39 CAD game after tax and putting it on the shelf to sit there unplayed for months or years isn't a quality investment of money.

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JustPlainLucas

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#17 JustPlainLucas
Member since 2002 • 79420 Posts

I just like to own the games I play. I see the value in streaming, but I don't think that value is high enough that it's going to replace physical media. I think also what we're going to see with game streaming services is a lot more games not being finished. People are going to go back and forth between all these different games because they have access to them versus having to be selective and buying a few ones they want and feeling more obligated to finish them because they paid 60 dollars for them.

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#18  Edited By xantufrog  Moderator
Member since 2013 • 11746 Posts

@foxhound_fox: Well, you do what works for you of course. But I'm still really confused. How does the subscription service better position you to finish the game? Why are you playing for 6 hours and giving up in a buy-to-play scenario, but playing the same game all the way through in a subscription service scenario?

Are you referring to the fact that a subscription service allows you to try a game, decide you don't like it, and try something else until you find something you DO want to sink a year into? Because that makes sense - although I just don't buy games I don't want to play through. Has only backfired a handful of times in my life, TBH (game that isn't what I want despite my research)

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#19  Edited By foxhound_fox
Member since 2005 • 98066 Posts

@xantufrog said:

@foxhound_fox: Well, you do what works for you of course. But I'm still really confused. How does the subscription service better position you to finish the game? Why are you playing for 6 hours and giving up in a buy-to-play scenario, but playing the same game all the way through in a subscription service scenario?

Are you referring to the fact that a subscription service allows you to try a game, decide you don't like it, and try something else until you find something you DO want to sink a year into? Because that makes sense - although I just don't buy games I don't want to play through. Has only backfired a handful of times in my life, TBH (game that isn't what I want despite my research)

The subscription service gives me a giant list of games to choose from. So if I'm paying $10 per month for the subscription service, I can get access to hundreds of games to play for for nine months for the same cost of a brand new game.

I've become almost a full convert to Netflix. My wife and I started building a Bluray collection before it really took off, but now haven't bought a single movie since getting Netflix and having movie channels with a PVR on cable. Why spend $20-30 on a physical copy, when that'll pay for 1-2 months of a subscription to watch 10-20 movies on?

I've been advocating for a true gaming subscription service for a while. It'll help overcome that issue with some games not selling well because of the high costs associated with physical releases. Look at how well digital distribution services have helped independent developers.

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#20 Son-Goku7523
Member since 2019 • 955 Posts
@qx0d said:

I wouldn't want to subscribe to a subscription service. Most movies on Netflix, Hulu, etc, I wouldn't even want to watch.

I just want to own a physical copy of the game/movie I want.

Subscription is mostly a waste of money.

^ ^ This

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#21 Kali-B1rd
Member since 2018 • 2241 Posts
@ProtossRushX said:
@qx0d said:

I wouldn't want to subscribe to a subscription service. Most movies on Netflix, Hulu, etc, I wouldn't even want to watch.

I just want to own a physical copy of the game/movie I want.

Subscription is mostly a waste of money.

agree man can't wait till these subscriptions services die out

You guys are just void of reality.

"Pay £60 for a game you might play for a few weeks, or pay £15 a month for access to many games, anywhere, anytime" ..... far more games to pick/try ... the everage game will be cheaper (£15to complete)