Comparison of video game subscriptions: Stadia, Uplay +, Playstation Now …


Which video game subscription to choose in 2019? As cloud gaming becomes more and more democratized, and platforms now offer catalogs that are almost unlimited accessible, for a simple monthly charge, the offer seems increasingly complex to grasp. Google Stadia, Playstation Now, Uplay +… we compare the best subscriptions to video games and cloud gaming.

Stadia, Uplay +, Apple Arcade… For the past few months, cloud gaming services have been trying to revolutionize our approach to video games, by offering users the possibility of playing ever larger catalogs of games, and on more and more media. diversified. At a time of dematerialization and cloud gaming, we take stock of the various on-demand game offers proposed or in the process of being offered by the main players in the video game sector.

Playstation Now

Sony Credits

With more than 700 unlimited games (including 250 PS4), the Sony Playstation Now is not surprisingly one of the most complete services on the cloud gaming market. For € 9.99 per month, or € 59.99 per year, the platform offers subscribers the opportunity to play unlimited at a large catalog PS2, PS3 and PS4 games, from a PS4 console or a Windows PC. No need to download titles, they can be accessed directly 720p streaming. Note that PS4 games can also be downloaded to play on console in native definition and offline.

On the catalog side, Playstation Now should satisfy many seasoned gamers, with several cult licenses (Red Dead Redemption, Borderlands, GTA…) from the last three generations of home consoles manufactured by the manufacturer. We regret the almost systematic absence of day-1 titles, including Sony exclusives. In terms of connection required, the Japanese manufacturer recommends a rate of 40 Mbit / s.

What to remember from PS Now:

  • € 9.99 / month or 59.99 / year
  • Available on PS4 and PC
  • Over 700 games (PS2, PS3, PS4) including 250 PS4
  • Playable in 720p streaming, PS4 games available for download and in native quality
  • Lots of AAA, but no / little day-1 access

Xbox Game Pass

Microsoft credits

Accessible for a few years now, the Xbox Game Pass service allows holders of a Microsoft account to have access to a catalog with more than 200 titles, ranging from triple A to more modest independent play. Available in two separate plans for € 9.99 / month on PC or console, the Xbox Game Pass is also available an Ultimate version at € 12.99 / month allowing you to enjoy games on both computer and Xbox One.

Even if the Xbox Game Pass catalog may seem more modest than that of its main competitor the PlayStation Now, there are still some major headlines of recent years, and in particular several day-1 accessible exclusives, like Forza Horizon 4 or Gears 5. Other publishers are also present in the catalog like Square Enix with its Tomb Raider or Just Cause license. Xbox enthusiasts will be pleased to find some not so old titles that have made the happiness of the Microsoft console, like Sea of ​​Thieves, Jump Force or Rocket league. Note thatit is not possible to play directly in streaming, and that a download is required for each game.

What to remember from Xbox Game Pass:

  • € 9.99 / month (console or PC), € 12.99 / month for Ultimate PC + console
  • Over 200 games
  • Available on PC and / or Xbox One
  • Large catalog, several excluded day-1

Nvidia GeForce Now

Nvidia credits

Unlike other cloud gaming platforms, Nvidia’s service only offers no specific catalog, but provides streaming access to more than 400 compatible games from Steam, Battle.net or Uplay. For the time being accessible in beta phase, GeForce Now allows you to access (almost) any title from your personal library from PC, Mac or Shield TV.

A feature that can be seen as a disadvantage, since it is necessary to acquire each game individually to enjoy it, but also as an advantage: in addition to having access to all the titles already purchased on the Different libraries of PC publishers, GeForce Now also promises players to compose their own game library online, but above all to remain its owner, which is not the case with PlayStation Now or Xbox Pass Ultimate for example. If only certain games are optimized for service (the full list here), restricted beta access is currently free. It remains to be seen if Nvidia will change its terms of access to the service once it is officially released. For the moment, no date has been formalized.

What to remember from Nvidia GeForce Now:

  • Free closed beta, no official date yet
  • Launch over 400 Steam, Uplay or Battle.net games
  • Streaming from PC, Mac and Shield TV
  • Games remain buyable individually on proprietary platforms

EA Origin / EA Access

EA credits

Announced during E3 2018, Electronic Arts’ cloud gaming service consists of two separate offerings: One exclusively for PC with Origin Access, and another for Xbox One and PS4 consoles with EA Access. On computers, the service is available from € 3.99 / month, but allows with the Premier option at € 14.99 / month to benefit from a large game catalog, as well as all the related DLCs. On Xbox One or PS4 console (only one machine per subscription), a single service at € 3.99 / month provides access to around fifty titles.

In all cases, the platforms offer players the opportunity to discover all of the publisher’s games in preview (10h for EA Origin Basic and EA Access, and on full set for EA Origin Premier), and to benefit from 10% on the Origin and EA stores.

What to remember from EA Origin (PC):

  • € 3.99 / month (Basic) or € 14.99 / month (Premier)
  • Up to 173 games accessible in Premier (164 in Basic)
  • Games available in unlimited preview (Premier) or 10h (Basic)
  • DLC and extensions automatically included with Premier
  • 10% discount on the online store

What to remember from EA Access (console):

  • € 3.99 / month for a console (PS4 or Xbox One)
  • Over 50 games
  • Games available in unlimited preview
  • DLC and extensions automatically included
  • 10% discount on the online store

Uplay +

Ubisoft credits

After EA, it’s the turn of French publisher Ubisoft to launch its unlimited gaming subscription offer. Available since September, Uplay + offers a subscription for € 14.99 / month integrating most of the Ubisoft games available, ranging from the oldest to the most recent. To note that new titles integrating the catalog in the future will be available in beta up to three days before their official release. All of the DLCs and extensions will also be accessible.

In terms of catalog, Uplay + obviously offers a nice selection among the huge titles that made the success of the video game giant, with all the licenses Assassin’s Creed, Rainbow Six, Watch Dogs, Far Cry or Splinter Cell. Please note that the titles will not be available offline, as will be the case for the services offered by EA and Xbox to download the games. Note that it will also be possible to buy individual titles to keep them (and their backups) even in the event of unsubscription.

What to remember from Uplay +:

  • € 14.99 / month
  • Over 100 PC games
  • Games available in unlimited preview and beta
  • DLC and extensions automatically included
  • Possibility to buy games individually

Google Stadia

Google credits

Presented as the future of cloud gaming when it was formalized last March, Google Stadia promises to bring the Mountain View company into the video game industry with a particularly promising service. On Stadia, no predefined catalog As on Playstation Now, the games will be available for unit purchase directly from the service catalog. Headlines are expected day-1, such as the highly anticipated Cyberpunk 2077, but partnerships with other cloud gaming platforms are also expected, as recently announced by Ubisoft with Uplay +.

Ideal for budding streamers, Google Stadia has already announced a minimum speed of 10 Mbit / s to be able to run correctly the different games offered in 720p. If the service promises to be free in FHD, Stadia will also be offered in a premium version and therefore pay at € 9.99 per month. At this price, it will be possible to enjoy titles in 4K and 60 fps resolution, for a minimum bit rate of 30 Mbit / s. The icing on the cake is that Stadia should also allow you to switch from one screen to another almost instantly, even during a game.

What to remember from Stadia:

  • Free in FHD, € 9.99 / month in 4K
  • Purchase of single games from the Stadia catalog
  • Available on any Android compatible screen

Apple Arcade

Apple credits

Within cloud gaming services, Apple has the particularity of positioning itself only on its home ecosystem (iPhone, iPad, Apple TV and Mac), but also of offering a game catalog announced as 100% new and exclusive on mobile. Accessible for a few days, the platform offers a hundred titles accessible for download only, thanks to a single subscription of 4.99 € per month (with one month free trial). At this price promises the apple brand, it is possible to play offline, and take advantage of several cult licenses like Pac-man, Lego and Sonic (more than a hundred titles are expected this fall) .

Regarding the gameplay, it will be possible to play without a controller in touch mode, but also to connect a Bluetooth controller (PS4 or Xbox) for more comfort. Great news for Apple, which often suffers from the lack of gaming offer on its devices compared to Android. Even if the service is not a sufficient argument to abandon the Google interface in favor of iOS, Arcade should still make some happy among the followers of the apple brand.

What to remember from Apple Arcade:

  • € 4.99 / month
  • Over 100 new and excluded mobile games expected
  • Download required (no streaming)
  • Available on Mac, iPad, iPhone and Apple TV

Comparative table

Playstation Now Xbox Game Pass Nvidia Geforce Now EA / Origin Access Uplay + (Ubisoft) Google Stadia Apple Arcade
Available? Yes Yes – Closed beta
– No official release date
Yes Yes – November 2019 Yes
Price – € 9.99 / month
– € 59.99 / year
– Without subscription
– 7 day free trial
– € 9.99 / month on console or PC
– € 12.99 / month for the Ultimate PC and console version
– Free (in closed beta) Origin:
– € 3.99 / month for the Basic offer
– € 14.99 / month for the Premier offer
Access:
– € 3.99 / month
– € 14.99 / month – Free in FHD
– 9.99 / month in 4K
– € 4.99 / month
– 30 day free trial
Platforms – Windows PC
– PS4
– PC
– Xbox One
– Windows PC
– Mac
– Shield TV
– Windows PC (Origin Access)
– Xbox One and PS4, one subscription per console (EA Access)
– Windows PC
– During 2020 on Stadia
– Any Chrome compatible device (smartphone, computer, tablet …) – iPhone
-iPad
– Apple TV
– Mac
Catalog – 700+ games from the PS2, PS3 and PS4 catalog in 720p
– Possibility to download PS4 games to play in native definition and offline
– 200+ games ranging from triple A to undesirable studios – Compatible with more than 400 games from the Steam, Battle.net and Uplay libraries Origin:
– Access to 164 (Basic) or 173 (Premier) EA games
– Preview games
– 10% discount on Origin purchases
-DLC included with Premier offer
Access:
– Access to more than 50 titles
– Preview games
– 10% discount on EA purchases
– 100+ Ubisoft games and their DLC / extensions
– Possibility to buy the games to have them permanently available
– Purchase of single games from the Google catalog
– Compatible with cloud gaming subscription services like Uplay +
– 55 exclusive and original games to be released, more than a hundred to come this fall
Notable games – God of War
– Fallout 4
– Until Dawn
– Red Dead Redemption
– GTA V
– The Division
– Just Cause 4
– Halo: Masterchief Collection
– Sea of ​​Thieves
– Gears 5
– Wolfenstein II
– Assassin’s Creed Syndicate / Odyssey / Origins
– Half-Life 2
-Resident Evil Revelation 2
– Shadow of the Tomb Raider
– Civilization V
– The Sims 4
– FIFA 20
– Star Wars Battlefront II
– Titanfall 2
– Mass Effect Andromeda
– Tropico 6
– Watch Dogs Legion (coming soon)
– The Division 2
– Assassin’s Creed Odyssey
– Rainbow Six Siege
– Far Cry 5
– Beyond good & Evil
– Cyberpunk 2077
– Mortal Kombat 11
– Destiny 2
– DOOM
– TESO
– Football Manager 2020
– Final Fantasy XV
– Beyond a Steel Sky
– Lego Brawls
– Rayman Mini
– Pac-man Party Royale
– Sonic Racing
Flow required – Minimum 5 Mbit / s
– 40 Mbit / s recommended
– Playable offline for some PS4 titles
No streaming, download required – 50 Mbit / s No streaming, download required No streaming, download required – Minimum 10 Mbit / s
– 30 Mbit / s for 4K at 60 fps
– Playable offline

Data science student with an interest in machine learning and artificial intelligence. Currently pursuing my masters degree at DePaul.

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