The proposed pricing for Google’s Stadia game streaming service is unlikely to prove popular with gamers according to new research, which found that 73% favour a Netflix-style subscription service that provides access to a library of games for a monthly fee.
A survey of 3,165 gamers carried out by Broadband Genie in collaboration with Eurogamer has found that paying a monthly subscription fee for unlimited access to the entire games library was by far the most popular option. Only 19% said they were interested in purchasing individual titles, and just 5% said they’d be happy to rent games.
However, Google has revealed that Stadia will require most games to be purchased outright, with just a handful bundled with an £8.99 Stadia Pro subscription, which also enables 4K streaming. Stadia itself will initially only be available on subscription, with a free tier becoming available sometime in 2020 .
The majority (62%) of those who said they were not interested in cloud gaming, and more than a third (36%) who said they were, see the lack of a tangible product as a drawback.
While the need for relatively fast broadband is an issue for some potential Stadia users , it may be the cost which deters many. In the survey, 86% said they would expect cloud streamed titles to be cheaper, but according to Google  the price of games on Stadia will be the same as a digital download or physical release.
Alex Tofts, Broadband Expert at Broadband Genie, said:
“Stadia could be the perfect solution for those who would struggle to enjoy games due to the expense of a console or gaming PC. But with this price structure, it’s unlikely to gain much of a foothold with anyone who already owns capable hardware. The issue with ownership and long term viability of Stadia is also a concern.”
Wesley Yin-Poole, Deputy Editor of Eurogamer, said:
“Stadia and other video game subscriptions are inevitably compared to Netflix, so consumers will expect to pay a fee for access to a huge library of video games. It’ll come as a shock to many to discover that with Stadia, you have to pay for new games on top of the subscription – and those new games won’t be cheaper despite being limited to streaming.”