You know how you have to subscribe to umpteen different video streaming services if you want to watch Man in the High CastleStranger ThingsStar Trek: PicardAvenue 5, and Doctor Who?

It looks like game streaming services could go the same way. Just a week after announcing the public launch of its GeForce Now game streaming service, following years of beta testing, NVIDIA has revealed that Activision Blizzard has pulled it games from the service.

That announcement alone may just be bad news for NVIDIA customers. But it could also be a sign of things to come for the game streaming space.

NVIDIA says there are still more than 1,500 games playable through GeForce Now. But with Activision Blizzard removing its catalog, that means gamers won’t be able to stream titles including Overwatch, World of Warcraft, Call of Duty, and Starcraft 2.

I wouldn’t be surprised if they showed up on a rival service at some point in the future (or return to GeForce Now after NVIDIA and Activision Blizzard work out some sort of a deal).

While there are some key differences between GeForce Now and Google’s Stadia or Microsoft’s upcoming xCloud, there are a growing number of companies looking to let you stream games over the internet to your TV, computer, smartphone or tablet.

The selling points are that you can play your games on any device and that you don’t need a console or gaming PC to play — you just need a speedy internet connection.

But if you need to sign up for half a dozen different services to access the games you want to play, I wonder how long it will take for subscription burnout to kick in.

via The Verge and Hot Hardware

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  1. Yeah, I don’t get this, if you own it you should be able to play it however you want as long as you’re not actually hacking it. Are they going to block nvidia IPs to prevent you downloading them from steam (are they available on steam?) and manually installing them? Like I get them removing them from the “included free with geforce” category but otherwise, no.

    1. This is about streaming, not downloading. GeForce Now lets you play games without installing them, by streaming games from a remote server. If you own an Activision Blizzard game, you can still install it on your PC and play locally. But you won’t be able to stream it over the internet to your phone or other supported devices using NVIDIA’s servers.

      1. Yeah, I know what it is, I have a Shield. My ignorance was regarding Blizzard games. I thought they were available on steam or something and didn’t realize they were one of the stores originally announced as compatible. I just assumed they were available on steam like half the games out there and could be downloaded that way since geforce now has a “steam game” where you can log in to your steam account and “install” any game you own and play it, though it will have to have steam cloud support to save your progress.

      2. The thing is Brad, GeForce now is just a remote desktop.
        You should be able to install any game you own from any store.

        You should be paying for the remote desktop service, not really sure why the titles are limited.

    2. nVidia is playing nice with the publishers. Not getting their permission to stream their titles from servers would precipitate a costly lawsuit and adverse publicity all around. And while it’s not exactly the same thing, companies have tried this type of thing with broadcast networks — retransmitting their broadcasts over the Internet to people who live in the viewing area — and were sued, and lost in court.

  2. I wonder how much Activision is concerned that the success of streaming services like GeForce Now on mobile platforms will cannibalize their mobile games, especially their high-earning pay-to-win games. After all, if you have your entire PC collection available to play on your phone anytime anywhere, why bother with more limited mobile games?

    Clearly pulling their own titles off the service isn’t going to stop people from playing games from other companies, but anything that makes the service less ubiquitous on the mobile platforms will prevent the mobile game market from being adversely impacted.

  3. Quoted:

    I wouldn’t be surprised if they showed up on a rival surface at some point in the future (or return to GeForce Now after NVIDIA and Activision Blizzard work out some sort of a deal).

    End quote.

    SERVICE!

    I could not make any sense of that word ‘surface’ in context. I understood the meaning, and mentally translated it as platform, but kept thinking about microsoft devices for some reason. Or that it would surface somewhere else later..

    I think the last comment I made was also regarding typos and spellchecking, but this one was almost tangible.

    On topic: I thought the differentiation for this program was that you could bring your own library of games? Could you not simply download it manually or are you restricted to a selection of launchers?

    1. The whole point of GeForce Now is that it lets you stream games you own to any supported device. So if Activision Blizzard pulls its games, you can still play them on a PC if you own them. But you won’t be able to stream them to your phone or other gadgets.

      1. Which is BS.
        You paid for your:
        …PC, Phone, Phone Internet, PC Internet, Electricity, Activision Game, and Subscription to GeForce Now.

        So they want MORE money? I guess corporation board members think citizens have infinite money. They probably have tiny clauses to “protect” themselves, in those huge Terms and Conditions that nobody reads but everyone agrees to.

        I’m guessing the established/unethical companies are scared that GeForce Now might affect their shareholders, as it possibly, can lead to cannibalisation of titles across various consoles, systems, and Apps. Guess 5G Network really is that important, so the fuss with Ericsson, Nokia, Huawei is deserved.

  4. I’m feeling pretty okay with watching the confusion unfold from the safety and predictability of my desktop and GoG library.
    I’d feel better if I knew that wouldn’t make me look like an old weirdo with a weird glowy box box that nobody was making games for once all the dust has settled.