When GameFly started out, it was a pretty transparent effort to ape the success of Netflix in the world of video games. Both Netflix and GameFly made their names by delivering discs to subscribers via the mail, and both eschewed the traditional rental model by allowing users to hang on to their rented media for as long as they might like. As of this morning, GameFly has further increased its resemblance to Netflix by releasing a PC client that, like Netflix’s various streaming video clients, allows players to download games on demand from a huge list of Windows- and Mac-compatible titles.
Or, at least, that’s how it’s supposed to work in theory. Like Netflix’s streaming service, GameFly’s list of titles that can be streamed by subscribers without dropping extra cash to actually purchase the game is relatively paltry. Though GameFly as a whole boasts “over 1,500″ computer games that could feasibly be eligible for inclusion in the firm’s Unlimited PC Play program — that’s what GameFly is calling this service — the current list of titles you can download and play right this very minute features fewer than 400 games. Again, this mirrors Netflix’s streaming service, which didn’t really become a compelling addition to the Netflix subscription plan until the company began adding new content en masse. We shot an email off to GameFly to ask if the firm would be implementing a similar plan for its Unlimited PC Play titles, and it confirmed that yes, the list of games available will increase over time.
Derivative though it may be, we support GameFly’s decision to release this PC client, not only because Netflix has become an indispensable facet of modern home entertainment, but also because GameFly is clever enough to know that simply issuing a new PC client isn’t a substantial draw for the large numbers of new subscribers it hopes to attract. To assist in this effort, the company is offering a free, downloadable PC copy of BioShock to anyone who downloads the new, free PC client. While BioShock is a bit long in the tooth at this point, it’s still a phenomenal game.
Plus, thanks to that zero dollar price point, BioShock is one of the most cost-effective primers on Ayn Rand’s Objectivist theory available. Just please don’t finish the game and immediately start railing on the rest of society for being a bunch of soft-hearted pinko commies. We got enough of that in the lead up the recent elections.
Anyway, if you’re interested in scoring your free game or exploring GameFly’s offerings in greater detail, you should click through to the firm’s official site and download the free PC or Mac client. That page also lists the necessary system requirements for the client, though assuming you have a computer built in the last half-decade you should be fine. Enjoy your new bounty of free entertainment.