Does Netflix stand a chance of success as a gaming platform?

Netflix is ​​currently the largest VOD service in the world – a monthly subscription regularly pays more than 207 million subscribers worldwide. Of these, nearly 7 million are in Poland alone. The platform is investing huge amounts of money in the upcoming episodes of its biggest series, spending tens of millions of dollars on mass productions, and for some time has been loudly declaring that it intends to jump into the gaming market. The first steps were taken last year, when the infrastructure was expanded. Now, for 3 days, we as the first person in the world can, Two mobile games test As part of the new Netflix show – Stranger Things 1984 and Stranger Things 3. These productions may not have been exhilarating, but everyone in the world has received two obvious cues. Firstly, Poland is starting to count on the international level (we are also testing PlayStation Plus Video as the first in the world), and secondly – Netflix intends to turn its plans into reality and vigorously conquer the hearts of all gamers.

Does it have a chance of success? After all, the platform has no experience

The goal seems very simple. You just need to ensure the right quality of streaming services, and then impress Netflix subscribers from all over the world with them. There are great difficulties in all this, because it is not easy to build the appropriate infrastructure and software, as Microsoft (as well as Onlive and many others) painfully learned. The giant’s internal search did not lead to anything, and the engineers were able to maintain a resolution of only 720p under heavy load, hence specific investments were required. Rumors have it This is why ZeniMax Media Group was purchased. Bethesda has developed its suite of cloud services called Orion for many years, which has performed incomparably better, reaching 1080p at 60fps without any issues. If a giant like Microsoft failed to meet players’ exorbitant expectations before, why did Netlix achieve it?

I can see three reasons here. First and foremost, Netflix isn’t much richer than Microsoft, but it does have great CEOs who feel a passion for business and, if they do something, they’re usually the right and wrong decisions. They certainly have a background of professionals, or a different model and business plan based on the idea of ​​small steps. Second, they have a huge user base that you can play with in one subscription – they don’t have to invest extra money, which is a big deal. Third, everyone knows Netflix. Gaming services can easily be put into the mainstream. Show, for example, in a short video or advertisement, that by running the VOD platform on your phone you can run something too and not have to do anything else. All you need is a stable internet connection. For this reason, I expect that for the first two, perhaps three years, only simple, undemanding platforms or games embedded in 2D graphics will be available as part of the gaming service.

In addition, the website will have to communicate with giants such as EA, Ubisoft, Square Enix, Sony or Microsoft. Regarding the last two, I highly doubt that there will ever be any successful collaboration. The Greens want to offer their own Game Pass wherever possible, but with Netflix they will soon become a “competitor”, though the VOD mogul is unlikely to plan a rapid expansion into the market. He will build his group of small development studios slowly, painstakingly, but with a good plan. Can you imagine games with the Netflix logo? Admittedly, the platform already has some experience in this area – she’s created several successful, interactive videos and is eager for more. They are also collaborating with the world’s greatest creators – eg CDProject RED in organizing this year’s WitcherCon. The animation of The Witcher or the second season of the positive response to the series is also no accident. Netflix’s first mini productions are slated for next year.

Certainly, the owners of the company see the great potential of the gaming market. It’s already several times bigger than film and music combined and nothing indicates that anything will change in the coming years. Games have grown into the rank of art, a very important medium, often chosen by the following younger generations. It is precisely for them that the current realities must be adapted, because it is all these children, who grew up in games, who will determine the conditions for the upcoming performances of the largest giants of the world.

If they want to play on their phones (most people play on mobile – over 2 billion people), why wouldn’t a modern platform like Netflix allow it? Just that it does not end, like Google, with great promises. Stadia also had the potential to be very successful, and after several unsuccessful months, the Americans announced that the project would be closed sooner rather than later. It’s a pity, because Cyberpunk 2077 on Stadia looked great, especially compared to consoles, and the latest FIFA 22, as well as PS5 and XSX/S, will support next-gen on Stadia, including the excellent HyperMotion system.

I’m curious to know what you think of Netflix and whether the platform has a chance of succeeding in this very difficult market full of picky consumers. If any broadcast starts to drop or offers poor and choppy quality, a single post by a bitter player on Facebook will suffice, and the whole news will spread through word of mouth. It is a demanding market like no other, extremely challenging and complex. He does not forgive mistakes, does not tolerate lies, is not particularly prone to manipulation, but recently he collects a lot of so-called casual, that is, people who are willing to pay or even play low quality, just to “be able to do it”. We are slowly heading towards a world where running and launching games from apps on a phone or smart TV becomes common, understandable and completely normal. Like it or not, if Netflix makes it through this experience with honors, its competition will start to look like mushrooms. And real gamers like me or many of you, fans of old and established consoles, will have to adapt to the new reality.

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