Video games have come a long way since the original Nintendo system my family had when I was young.
The quality of the graphics and controllers has risen, but so has the price of games. Now there are some new options for gamers who want to give these games a test run before purchase, or for those who want a few days of entertainment for cheap.
Games can be rented from multiple sources and in a variety of ways.
Redbox, the most recent company to join the game rental business, offers games for PlayStation 3, Xbox and Wii for $2 a night (plus tax). There are Redbox kiosks all over the Roanoke and New River valleys, making this a convenient option. However, Redbox kiosks can carry only a limited number of copies of each game, so there’s a risk of the most popular games being unavailable.
Meanwhile, GameFly, Gamerang, GottaPlay and Blockbuster By Mail deliver game rentals by mail. The price of each service varies, but each is considerably cheaper per rental than the $50 or more to buy a game. Monthly subscriptions do add up, but for gamers who tend to get bored with games quickly, this is a good option.
Blog reader Dave commented on a post about the latest Redbox news, saying, “There’s a lot of games that look interesting, but I’m not going to shell out $20 – $60 to try out. This is a great idea.”
For a monthly fee, GameFly, Gamerang, GottaPlay and Blockbuster By Mail all offer a certain number of games per month, and shipping charges are included.
Blockbuster By Mail offers a basic subscription for $11.99 a month, which allows renters to receive one game or DVD at a time for an unlimited number of times each month. The game systems supported include Xbox, Xbox 360, PlayStation 2, PlayStation 3 and Nintendo Wii. For two games/DVDs, the subscription costs rises to $16.99 a month; for three, $19.99 a month.
GameFly, which offers a free month trial and other introductory deals, has more than 7,000 game titles available for rent. Games are available for PlayStation 3, PlayStation 2, PlayStation Portable, Xbox 360, Xbox, Wii, GameCube, Nintendo DS, and Game Boy Advance for a monthly fee of $15.95 for one game at a time or $22.95 for two games at a time.
GameFly also offers perks to its subscribers. Members earn rewards that can be used toward game purchases — the longer you’re a member, the more valuable the rewards.
Gamerang offers free shipping on more than 6,500 Xbox, Xbox 360, PlayStation, PlayStation 2, PlayStation 3, PlayStation Portable, Nintendo DS, Game Boy Advance, GameCube and Wii games.
This delivery service also has a variety of membership plans, starting out at $17.95 a month for one game. For three games at a time, users pay $49.95 plus a refundable $75 deposit; and for four games out at a time, users pay $59.95 plus a refundable $100 deposit.
With more than 4,000 titles (less than some of the other options), GottaPlay offers games for Xbox, Xbox 360, PlayStation 2, PlayStation 3, PlayStation Portable, Wii, GameCube, Game Boy Advance and Nintendo DS at only $11.95 for one game at a time per month or $19.95 for two games per month.
Have you tried any game rental services? Which do you prefer?