How to Give Gaming Services As Gifts – Vulture

How to Give Gaming Services As Gifts – Vulture

If you love a gamer but would rather die than walk into a GameStop and ask an employee what game to buy them, you might want to consider a gaming service as an alternative gift.

First, a primer. A game subscription service is similar to your Netflixes or your HBO Maxes. For a monthly subscription fee, you get access to a library of content (in this case, games) that you can enjoy for as long as you’re subscribed. An online multiplayer service is a subscription fee you pay in order to play with other people online. Two major console manufacturers, Nintendo and Microsoft, have combined those into one subscription (and Sony is reportedly planning to follow suit), but there is a difference.

It’s also worth noting that standard gift cards to a gaming console’s online store (e.g. Nintendo eShop, Microsoft Store, etc.) can also be used for these services, which are always good options as well. And unless specified, the price listed is for a yearly membership. Okay, onward!

The gist: In addition to online play, Nintendo’s subscription service includes a free library of classic NES and SNES games, as well as access to online voice chat via the Nintendo Switch Online app and cloud storage, which allows you to save game data online. Nintendo also recently rolled out an “Expansion Pass” for Switch Online. The $50 yearly subscription adds a library of Nintendo 64 and Sega Genesis games, as well as the Animal Crossing: New Horizons DLC.

How to gift it: You can buy a digital Nintendo Switch Online gift subscription at most major retailers, or pick up a physical gift card in stores. (Best Buy also has the option to buy a physical gift card online.) A yearly subscription costs $20, but a family membership, which can be used by up to eight people, is also available for $35.

The gist: Unlike Microsoft and Nintendo, Sony is still separating its online service, PlayStation Plus, from its game subscription service, PlayStation Now. (Though Bloomberg reports that the company is planning on merging them soon.) PlayStation Plus is currently the better deal, as it also includes a library of monthly free games in addition to online multiplayer, though admittedly a much smaller library than is offered through …….