ImaJAN Media Network
MeltedJoystick Home
   Games  Members
Search +
Searching... Close  
Are you sure you want to delete this comment?
  
 
  Login Using Facebook
Twitter
 
     

The ONLY 3 Subscriptions Worth a Damn

View Nelson Schneider's Profile

By Nelson Schneider - 09/22/19 at 03:17 PM CT

Oh, great. This week Apple Computer announced that they will be adding yet another subscription gaming service to the ever-increasing pile, alongside the likes of Microsoft Gamepass, EA Access, Uplay+, Google Stadia, PlayStation+, and Nintendo’s thing. The sad part is, no matter what each company’s force of deluded fanboys might spout in the feverish midst of their White Knighting and/or shilling, NONE of these subscriptions are actually worth the powder to blow them up. Meanwhile, the gaming community and what remains of the free gaming press have grown decidedly cynical about the whole thing.

And the cynicism is well deserved, as subscription services are increasingly offering little to nothing of value, especially when compared to outright buying digital media licenses. With corporate America expecting consumers to stack subscription upon subscription upon subscription, customers are being bled monthly for alarming amounts of cash, while getting only temporary ephemera in return.

Subscriptions are, at their heart, rental services. While we once had to rent each individual piece of media we wished to consume, subscriptions supplanted that with an all-you-can-eat (in a month) model where heavy users are rewarded with a much better return on their payment than light users. Erratic users are punished most of all, as they might have months where they are too busy to engage with a given subscription’s content, resulting in payments to the IP holder in return for literally nothing. It doesn’t matter that Apple Arcade is “only” $5/month or that Nintendo Online is “only” $20/year: If you don’t engage with those services constantly, you may as well take Honest Abe and Andy outside and set them on fire.

Furthermore, these modern digital subscriptions can actually provide less of a return on investment than the currently-endangered traditional print media subscriptions they replaced. When you subscribed to a print media publication, you knew what you were getting for your fee and, even better, were free to keep these print volumes forever, if you had the desire and the space. With most digital subscriptions, when you stop paying, you are left with zilch, diddly-squat, and nada.

That said, in the entire world, there are a handful of subscription services that do provide a good return on the investment. And I’ve curated them here, dear reader, for your perusal.

3. SAM’s Club (or Costco, if you prefer)
The idea of paying a fee to shop at a specific store seems like it should be universally deplorable. Amazon Prime is a shopping fee that also provides video streaming, and it’s a huge waste of money. So what makes a SAM’s membership different? Well, for one thing, a SAM’s membership is half the cost of Amazon Prime, and for the main thing, SAM’s carries an incredible array of goods at amazing prices, many of which can’t be found elsewhere, not even at owned-by-the-same-parent-company as SAM’s Club retailer, Wal-Mart. I have personally purchased furniture, electronics, clothing, and lots of food at SAM’s that I’m very happy with. Toss-in the nickel-per-gallon discount on gasoline a SAM’s membership provides, and you’ve got plenty of justification to pay the Walden family their subscription fee. Just don’t be fooled into the “Plus” membership add-on (it’s basically on-disc DLC… for shopping).

2. Shadow Cloud PC
As I’ve already covered in a previous article, Shadow offers a literal virtual gaming PC in the cloud. Unlike most subscriptions, Shadow is very unrestrictive in what users are allowed to do with their rented VM, and also respects user privacy. Yes, if your subscription lapses, your cloud gaming rig goes *poof,* but since none of your software purchases are tied directly to Shadow, you’re free to backup, move, reinstall, etc. any and everything that was on your Shadow, be it on a physical gaming PC or on Shadow again, upon renewing your subscription. Let’s face it: Hardware doesn’t last forever, and cutting out the purchase and assembly of said hardware and letting Shadow handle all of that instead is a good way to overcome one of the biggest hurdles that prevents people from switching to PC gaming.

1. Humble Bundle Monthly
The closest thing to real value in the subscription gaming ecosystem is the Humble Monthly Bundle. Not only does your active subscription grant you access to the Humble Trove – a sizable library of rental games – but you also get a monthly selection of hand-picked games to keep. Like, for real no-take-backsies keep. While I don’t feel compelled to subscribe to Humble Monthly during most months because the Trove is of no value to me as a rental service (the same way all the other game subscriptions are) and because most months the freebies are stuff I already own or don’t want, the model of providing permanent value for a monthly fee is the closest to the old days of print media we’re likely to ever see again.

Share:    
MeltedJoystick Gaming Blog RSS Feed
Comments
0 comments
Name: 

Avoid spam Captcha: Sign Up + or Log In +   



 

Bloggers

Previous Blog Posts

Archive

All Posts

October 2019

September 2019

August 2019

July 2019

June 2019

May 2019

April 2019

March 2019

February 2019

January 2019

December 2018

November 2018

October 2018

September 2018

August 2018

July 2018

June 2018

May 2018

April 2018

March 2018

February 2018

January 2018

December 2017

November 2017

October 2017

September 2017

August 2017

July 2017

June 2017

May 2017

April 2017

March 2017

February 2017

January 2017

December 2016

November 2016

October 2016

September 2016

August 2016

July 2016

June 2016

May 2016

April 2016

March 2016

February 2016

January 2016

December 2015

November 2015

October 2015

September 2015

August 2015

July 2015

June 2015

May 2015

April 2015

March 2015

February 2015

January 2015

December 2014

November 2014

October 2014

September 2014

August 2014

July 2014

June 2014

May 2014

April 2014

March 2014

February 2014

January 2014

December 2013

November 2013

October 2013

September 2013

August 2013

July 2013

June 2013

May 2013

April 2013

March 2013

February 2013

January 2013

December 2012

November 2012

October 2012

September 2012

August 2012

July 2012

June 2012

May 2012

April 2012

March 2012

February 2012

January 2012

December 2011

November 2011

October 2011

September 2011

August 2011

July 2011

June 2011

May 2011

April 2011

March 2011

February 2011

 
Log In
 
For members wanting to use FB to login, click here
remember me
 
 

What Members Are Doing

Comments about...

New Game Reviews

Lands of Lore: Throne of C... game review by Nelson Schneider
Rage 2 game review by Nelson Schneider
God of War game review by Chris Kavan
Doom (2016) game review by Chris Kavan
EnHanced game review by Nelson Schneider
Armada game review by Chris Kavan
Demolition Racer game review by Megadrive
Jarrett & Labonte Stock Ca... game review by Megadrive

New Game Lists

Backlog by Nelson Schneider
Games I Own: Wii by dbarry_22
My Backlog by Chris Kavan
Top Game List by Megadrive
Top Nintendo (NES) Games by Nick
Top Games I own by MeltedJoystick User
Top Game List by SIngli6
Backlog by Matt

 

 

 

Contact Us Public Relations MeltedJoystick Friends    

Advertise and Business

Contacts Us

Jobs

About us

SiteMap

 

Support Us

FAQ and Help

News and Press

Terms of Use

Privacy

Hitfix.com

Amazon.com

OVGuide.com

   
Are you sure you want to delete this comment?
  
Are you sure you want to delete this blog?