Gaming has felt like an inevitability for the online retail giant for years now. In 2012, Amazon launched Amazon Game Studios but the company has progressively added wrinkles to what feels like an exciting strategy. At the time Mashable even mentioned how Amazon was going into social games so it would be surprising to see the more core focused direction the company took. The biggest addition for Amazon’s intention took place in 2014 with the purchase of Double Helix Games who at the time had rebooted the popular Killer Instinct. Then later that year Amazon bought Twitch for near $1 billion dollars. A bonkers amount of money. Amazon Game Studios has not developed a game since The Unmaking though all of its published games have focused initiative of providing a richer gaming experience for the mobile user.
Recently announced in Amazon’s press release about oodles of new apps coming to the service they also heavily featured the addition of Gamefly Streaming. In my eyes, this is Amazon continuing to put pieces in place for a grand run in the video game world. The only thing that they probably need to tackle is the next version of the Fire TV that will hopefully coincide with some works that Amazon Game Studios has behind closed doors. Seems like every time I check to see what the company is doing from a developer standpoint I am met with the new ways they will use Twitch. Which is fantastic, Twitch has so much room to be used for more even in just gaming that they should be getting us excited about that stuff. It isn’t games but Gamefly Streaming, an exclusive service to Amazon at least for the time being, allows them to already look like they are competing with a Sony on a level. Obviously it not the big picture but in one piece of the pie Amazon has stepped up to the plate before the game streaming movement really kicks up a notch.
The pay structure for the service is unique in that it is divided into six packages, for now, with five packs of seven titles costing $6.99/month and one pack of sixteen titles for $9.99/month. Hopefully you don’t have a diverse family or those costs could add up. While the selection isn’t the newest and hottest games on the market there are more than a few quality titles within each pack. The Action Pack and Gamer Pack both give you the entire Batman: Arkham trilogy which is easily worth $6.99 for a month. It looks like with Playstation Now, their streaming service, from the 100+ game selection they only have Arkham City in the rotation. Granted, PlayStation Now has a far beefier line-up on the whole, it also comes in at $14.99/month which is not quite that sweet spot you want. Not a bad price at all for the service, you’re getting more value at that price than Gamefly’s service, but after the $10 mark it becomes more of a commitment deserving of some thought compared to only $7. GameFly’s approach seems to be to give you your fill of quality games, a key part, at $6.99 and then ideally rotate in new games that make you want to stay. And honestly, the new games may need to come in rather quick to fill out the line-up with another marquee game or two.
Amazon now has feet into several video game pools: video streaming, game development, premium mobile publishing, and now game streaming. The exciting part in all of this is when they will bring it all together. There is not a thought in my mind that believes that Amazon has bought ingredients and doesn’t plan to make a meal. How they come together is something I can hardly fathom. There are so few games that can make that jump from being a mobile game to feeling comfortable with a controller. Would not be surprised if Amazon Game Studios managed that as well as potentially putting a game on Gamefly Streaming which would allow them to get around whatever technical hurdles they couldn’t clear otherwise. If nothing else it puts another gaming service in the Amazon wheelhouse that they can exploit, in a good way, down the line. I feel like my eyes have been on Amazon Game Studios for a while now; hopefully they give me something to really see.