The best game subscriptions: Game on (and on and on)

Pay more (or less) for more games to choose from each month with a game subscription.

Best game subscription overall
Xbox Game Pass Ultimate
Xbox Game Pass Ultimate
$18.95/mth
Platforms
Xbox, PC, Android, iOS, Samsung TVs
Library size
470+
Game types
Day one, new, past-gen, indie, EA Play
Best cheap game subscription
Epic-Games-logo
Epic Games
Free
Platforms
PC, Mac
Library size (free)
200+
Game types
New, past-gen, indie
Best console game subscription
PlayStation Extra
PlayStation Plus Extra
From
$18.95/mth
Platforms
PS4, PS5
Library size
490+
Game types
PS4, PS5, Ubisoft+ Classics
Best mobile game subscription
Apple Arcade logo
Apple Arcade
$9.99/mth
Platforms
iOS, MacOS, Apple TV
Library size
200+
Game types
New, mobile, indie
Best streaming game subscription
GeForce-logo
GeForce Now
From
$3.99/mth
Platforms
PC, Mac, Chrome, Shield, Android
Library size
1,800+
Game types
What you already own
Nathan Lawrence
Jan 26, 2024
Icon Time To Read6 min read

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Subscription services are everywhere these days, from video streaming to password managers and antivirus. And games are no exception. Whether you play games on a computer, console or mobile device, there’s a subscription service that can unlock access to a wider range of games.

Prices start at free manual library additions to the kind of monthly costs that make Netflix’s priciest tier look reasonable. Whatever your platform/s of preference, we’ve rounded up the best game subscriptions that are worth considering.

Compare the best game subscriptions

Best for
Service
View more
Price
Platforms
Library size
Game types
Best game subscription overall
Xbox Game Pass UltimateXbox Game Pass Ultimate
$18.95/mthXbox, PC, Android, iOS, Samsung TVs470+Day one, new, past-gen, indie, EA Play
Best cheap game subscription
Epic-Games-logoEpic Games
FreePC, Mac200+New, past-gen, indie
Best console game subscription
PlayStation ExtraPlayStation Plus Extra
From $18.95/mthPS4, PS5490+PS4, PS5, Ubisoft+ Classics
Best mobile game subscription
Apple Arcade logoApple Arcade
$9.99/mthiOS, MacOS, Apple TV200+New, mobile, indie
Best streaming game subscription
GeForce-logoGeForce Now
From $3.99/mthPC, Mac, Chrome, Shield, Android1,800+What you already own
Best bundled game subscription
Prime-Gaming-logoPrime Gaming
From $9.99/mthPCHundredsRecent, indie

Xbox Game Pass Ultimate

Best game subscription overall

Platforms
Xbox, PC, Android, iOS
Library size
470+
Game types
Day one, new, past-gen, indie, EA Play
Starts at
$18.95/mth
pro
Pros
pro Day-one games (and heaps more)
pro Includes Xbox Cloud Streaming
pro Available on multiple platforms
con
Cons
con Best value requires a PC and Xbox Series X|S
con Expensive if not used frequently
con The Xbox Gold workaround doesn’t work anymore

Xbox Game Pass Ultimate isn’t just the best because it has “Ultimate” in the title. It’s the best because of its platform versatility and overall value. You can stream new-release Xbox Series X|S games on Xbox One, play exclusives on PC and get lost in a back catalogue of classic Xbox titles on a new-gen Xbox. It’s great to see a cloud-streaming service that actually works, and the device compatibility means you can convert an old laptop or tablet into a gaming screen as long as you have solid internet and a controller. With close to 500 games to choose from and Microsoft’s studio expansion implicitly promising to include even more, Xbox Game Pass Ultimate is a subscription whose value is impossible to deny (unless you don’t use it).

Alternatively, consider PlayStation Plus Extra if you’re a Sony fan or Nintendo Switch Online if you love all things Ninty.

Epic Games

Best cheap game subscription

Platforms
PC
Library size
200+
Game types
New, past-gen, indie
Free
pro
Pros
pro Regular rotation of free games
pro Recent releases and indie titles
pro Subscription costs nothing
con
Cons
con PC and Mac only
con Need to manually add games
con Can’t add free games you missed

What’s better than a cheap game subscription? A free one! Epic Games may be limited to PC and Mac owners, but you can (and should) create a free Epic Games account and use a browser to add free games to your account. New titles drop every week or so and the end of year is typically a time when there’s a new free game every day. Not every free game is a renowned title but that’s sometimes a great way to find something new. Mercifully, not every noteworthy catalogue addition is a new release, meaning those with more modest PC or Mac specs can still play at least some of the games that are added to the library.

If you’re a Switch owner, Nintendo Switch Online is reasonably priced at $29.95 a year (or $59.95 for more games), plus you can try Fortnite for free on Xbox Cloud Gaming or a free hour session of GeForce Now.

PlayStation Plus Extra

Best console game subscription

Platforms
PS4, PS5
Library size
490+
Game types
PS4, PS5, Ubisoft+ Classics
Starts at
$18.95/mth
pro
Pros
pro Huge library of games
pro PS4, PS5 and Ubisoft selection
pro Exclusive content and features
con
Cons
con Expensive for what you get
con Fewer games than pricier PlayStation Plus Deluxe
con PlayStation Plus required for cloud saves

If you play multiplayer on PS4 or PS5, you likely have a PlayStation Plus subscription, which is also handy for cloud saves. PlayStation Plus Essential is the cheapest of three tiers but only includes a handful of manually added games each month (yours to play as long as you’re a PS+ subscriber). For a price hike, PlayStation Plus Extra grants access to an on-demand library of close to 500 PS4 and PS5 games to download and play. This catalogue extends beyond Sony exclusives and includes games from other publishers, most notably a range of Ubisoft+ Classics. You can pay even more for PlayStation Plus Deluxe but that’s really only if you’re craving older PlayStation games and game trials.

As you may have guessed, my favourite game subscription is Xbox Game Pass Ultimate, so consider that a worthy alternative or Nintendo Switch Online if you’re a Switch player.

Apple Arcade

Best mobile game subscription

Platforms
iOS, MacOS, Apple TV
Library size
200+
Game types
New, mobile, indie
Starts at
$9.99/mth
pro
Pros
pro Great library of games (including exclusives)
pro Competitively priced
pro Share sub with others
con
Cons
con Only available on Apple devices
con Tricky navigation
con Library could grow faster

With thousands of options available, it can be tricky to find a good mobile game that isn’t hounding you with ads or ambushing you with microtransactions. That’s where Apple Arcade steps in. While it’s limited to the Apple ecosystem of devices (like iPhones), if you have one of those in your home and like mobile gaming, it’s well worth considering. Bonus points if you’re an Apple household as you can use Family Sharing so up to five other people can enjoy your subscription, too. Apple Arcade’s been around since 2019, which means its library has grown a lot since launch with an impressive selection of exclusives and classics to play today.

If you don’t have any Apple devices in your home, consider a Google Play Pass to access 1,000+ ad/microtransaction-free games and apps on Android devices (at a cheaper $7.99 monthly fee).

GeForce Now

Best streaming game subscription

Platforms
PC, Mac, Chrome, Shield, Android
Library size
1,800+
Game types
What you already own
Starts at
$3.99/mth
pro
Pros
pro Free to try
pro Great streaming performance
pro Good selection of supported platforms
con
Cons
con Limited session times
con No 40-series streaming GPUs
con Best experience costs lots

Even with the failure of Stadia, cloud gaming isn’t going anywhere anytime soon. While our main pick is Xbox Cloud Gaming (part of an Xbox Game Pass Ultimate subscription), consider GeForce Now the next best thing. GeForce Now is a multiplatform game-streaming service that’s well worth trying before you buy. The big disclaimer is you need to own a compatible game to stream it. Thankfully, there’s a 30-minute trial to see if this service is for you. Assuming you have fast enough internet and a good NBN-compatible modem, GeForce Now can offer high-resolution gaming that feels surprisingly responsive. The big catch is the pricing tiers, the cheaper of which offer lower queue priority and time-limited sessions. If you want to go all out, it costs $29.99 per month for 4K streaming at up to 60fps, assuming you have a monitor that’d support that resolution and frame rate (and not the gaming rig to accompany it).

For cheaper cloud gaming, use Xbox Cloud Gaming via an Xbox Game Pass Ultimate subscription or, to play your own games, try Parsec for free.

Prime Gaming

Best bundled game subscription

Platforms
PC
Library size
Hundreds
Game types
Recent, indie
Starts at
$9.99/mth
pro
Pros
pro New games each week
pro Occasional big-name surprises
pro Other Prime subscription perks
con
Cons
con Lots of games you’ve never heard of
con Need to manually add games
con PC only

Amazon Prime really is the gift that keeps on giving. For shoppers, it means free two-day delivery for thousands of items. Then there’s Prime Video, Prime Music and Prime Reading Perks. For the gamers, an Amazon Prime subscription also includes a Twitch Prime subscription for your favourite game streamer, plus games as part of Prime Gaming. Like Epic Games, you have to manually add the included games to your account while they’re available. But once you do, you can download and play them whenever you like. Admittedly, there are a lot of unknown games to pad out the catalogue but there are great older games and indie titles to choose from often enough that it’s yet another Prime perk that’s worth taking advantage of.

Alternatively, if you have a Netflix subscription, there are 50+ mobile games for Android and iOS devices as part of your monthly payment.

What to look for in a game subscription

The most important initial consideration for a game subscription is which supported platforms you have access to. Epic Games may offer free games but that won’t help you if you don’t have a PC or Mac to play them on. That said, services like Xbox Game Pass Ultimate may have “Xbox” in the name but can also be played on other platforms. The same is true of game subscriptions like EA Play and Ubisoft Plus.

Pick the gaming subscription that you’re most likely to use. Note that services like PlayStation Plus have different tiers, so you don’t always need to pay for the priciest one if you’re not using the features. If you like a service, consider paying for a multi-month or yearly subscription (where available) for better value.

A massive library size may seem like an attractive proposition, but it’s more practical to focus on a game subscription with games that you actually want to play. After all, with so many streaming services around, there’s no point adding another monthly subscription that isn’t used.

icon-expertise

How we choose the best game subscriptions

All of the game subscriptions on this page have been tested by members of our team; some of them are still in use for dozens of hours each month. The most important aspect of a game subscription for us is platform versatility because it frees up users to play on a range of devices. Bonus points if the service supports mobile devices.

While a big selection of games is important to a degree, we’re more interested in the quality of the games. Certain services offer games that aren’t as known or popular as others. We appreciate that the quality of a gaming subscription’s library is determined in the frequency of big releases, more so if the games are exclusive and/or available on day one (like Xbox Game Pass).

We also look at how straightforward the corresponding apps are to use. Game subscriptions aren’t just targeted at hardcore gamers, so we favour services that get you up and gaming in as few steps as possible, ideally, without clunky interfaces.

Game subscription frequently asked questions

Yes, there are several options for game subscriptions in Australia. Epic Games and GeForce Now have free options or you can pay for others. Mobile gamers may consider Apple Arcade or Google Play Pass. While console gamers can choose between Xbox Game Pass, PlayStation Plus or Nintendo Switch Online.
Xbox Game Pass costs vary depending on the plan tier. Xbox Game Pass Core or PC costs $10.95 a month, while Xbox Game Pass Ultimate costs $18.95 per month.
Apple Arcade is the game subscription for iOS, Mac and Apple TV devices. It costs $9.99 a month in Australia and comes with hundreds of games to download and play.
Nathan Lawrence
Written by
Nathan Lawrence
Nathan Lawrence has been banging out passionate tech and gaming words for more than 11 years. These days, you can find his work on outlets like IGN, STACK, Fandom, Red Bull and AusGamers. Nathan adores PC gaming and the proof of his first-person-shooter prowess is at the top of a Battlefield V scoreboard.

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