Netflix is moving into offering video games according to a report by Bloomberg via an anonymous source.
“The Netflix of games” has been thrown around a lot over the last decade. First it was OnLive (RIP) then PS Now took the mantle before Stadia, Nvidia, Xbox, and others started offering video game streaming services. Even Amazon has a game streaming platform – the place that was once exclusively selling books.
Netflix is looking to get in on the game streaming bandwagon with the recent hire of former EA executive Mike Verdu, who is joining Netflix as vice president of game development, according to Bloomberg’s source.
Apparently, Netflix will offer video game streaming (Update: confirmed) as part of its regular package – so no extra fees for games. They’ll be another “genre” in the catalogue for those who want to enjoy them.
It will be interesting to see what kind of approach Netflix takes. The company has a presence on Sony’s PS4 and PS5 consoles, as well as Microsoft’s range of Xbox devices. Will games run through the app on those consoles? Will Sony and Microsoft allow Netflix to come barging into their ecosystem with video games? Movies and TV series is one thing, but video games is a whole new, er, game.
It’s more likely that Netflix games will run via browsers to begin with, and maybe even mobile devices like Android and iOS phones and tablets as they’re the easiest places to integrate game controllers.
But what about the long-term future? Will Netflix offer third-party content and nothing more? Or will the firm do for games what it did for movies and TV shows – originals produced and paid for by Netflix? It’s all very interesting and there are more questions than answers at this point, but it’s interesting nonetheless. Maybe it’ll force Sony to improve PS Now and to actually include PS5 versions of games for those who play on PS5…