Humble Monthly Subscriptions?

Posted by death on Oct. 5, 2015, 4:59 p.m.

So Humble (from Humble Bundle) launched a new service, a monthly subscription that gives you random games each month. Currently $12/month and 5% goes to charity. You even get Grimrock II instantly for signing up. Sounds like a deal since that game is going for $24 on steam right now.

So what do you think of this as a gamer? Personally i think it sounds pretty interesting though it is a hefty amount of money to put down each month for random games. My plan is usually to save up money for a game i really want as opposed to buying whatever is cheap and on sale. My experiences with impulse buys have usually been pretty bad. That being the case, i see a lot of potential for getting complete garbage from this.

Now, as a developer, does this seem useful? Getting people to try your game is hard as hell now a days so a service like this could be really nice for those random indie titles that no one has tried yet and didn't get any press. Of course, who knows how the devs are paid with this system but that's probably less important than the exposure it could give you if you were to volunteer for this.

I might give it a shot just for Grimrock II but after that, i don't know. We will have to see what people say about it. If they give us nothing but garbage and a small number of games i can't see it being successful. It'd be nice if there was more information on it but the store page says very little as to how the games are selected and what you will be receiving other than the fact that the games didn't previously appear in any other bundles. This hints at the games being more obscure than the big bundle titles we usually get.



Cpsgames 8 years, 8 months ago

I think it's pretty dumb. Why would I pay for a bunch of random (and most likely crappy) indie games that I may already own? I'd rather wait for actual deals.

KaBob799 8 years, 8 months ago

It really depends how the monthly bundle interacts will all their other bundles. It will be a terrible deal if most of the games will be in normal humble bundles in the future.

Jani_Nykanen 8 years, 8 months ago

At first, this sounded like a good idea. But getting totally random games… no. I would rather pay $12 to get all the bundles automatically (weekly bundles, mobile bundles, maybe even the book bundles!). It wouldn't be fun to get five random crappy Windows-only indie games.

death 8 years, 8 months ago

Ha yeah I gotta agree. the whole random thing is probably too much for most people to put down $12 a month for. It feels a lot like gambling I suppose. At least with the other bundles you can see what it is before spending any money. It seems that every company is trying to create a subscription service recently and i can't imagine it working out well for all of them. there are too many competitors when it comes to subscriptions.

F1ak3r 8 years, 8 months ago

I already own too many games I still need to play.

In general, this goes against the way I do Humble Bundles. I buy a fair number of them, but not all, and if I don't particularly want any of the bonus games, I only pay $1 (still a crazy deal for three/four games).

spike1 8 years, 8 months ago

I just had a look, but I can't find anywhere that says it's random. From the page: "A highly curated bundle of our favorite games at one fixed price. Includes everything from recent hits to hidden gems to timeless classics - every month.".

As long as it's chosen rather than random then this could be an interesting idea, unless I'm just being really dense and it says random right on the page XD. I wonder how many people will have enough time to play all the games though.

death 8 years, 8 months ago

When i say "random" i don't mean the site randomly generates what to give out to each individual, i mean it is random from the consumer's perspective. we have no idea what we will be getting, it's as if we just bought $12 worth of games from the store front page without looking.

yeah that's an interesting problem, i have already experienced the reality of owning way too many games to ever complete. games are so damn cheap now that it is pretty easy to acquire a huge number of them. this usually results in never playing or finishing most of them. i assume that's what going to happen with the majority of titles they give out.

spike1 8 years, 8 months ago

Oh right, sorry that makes more sense XD. I guess it depends on the mindset then. I mean, for some people this would be a great opportunity to branch out into different game genres and styles, if they're open to it. However those that just want specific games wouldn't want this. As for not finishing many of the games, I wonder if they might pick shorter indie titles that can be beaten in an hour or so. If they don't I think many people will just unsubscribe after a few months.

Unaligned 8 years, 8 months ago

From a business standpoint, it's a solid move. Having (usually large) sources of revenue like the ordinary bundles is fine and all, but stability in a revenue stream is far more sought after than one that's more spontaneous and somewhat unpredictable. It just makes sense, they've built up all this goodwill throughout the years and now they can add a consistent, predictable, monthly extra to their income because we all trust the humblebundle guys.

As a consumer, I myself try to stay away from anything that has a subscription, but I guess I'm not the target for this sort of thing (also I have to clear my backlog). The random element's not too appealing to me because I tend to inform myself before doing a purchase, there's plenty of genres that are simply not my thing. Now, if you got the extra cash and want to play some random games because you like discovering new stuff, by all means go get it.

You can also argue this might shed light on some more obscure titles that would stay that way forever if it weren't for this.

F1ak3r 8 years, 8 months ago

You can also argue this might shed light on some more obscure titles that would stay that way forever if it weren't for this.
This is making me almost consider it. With a bundle of games every month, you're bound to get a few things you'd never have even looked for on your own that you end up really enjoying.

But then, that same is true of regular bundles. If anything makes HB Monthly look silly, it's the actual Humble Bundles. Under the current system, I can get a random bundle of games every month for a "subscription" fee of little as $1-$5.

I have an subscription, which is $15 a month (first month is free and I caught a half-price subscription special for three months after that). For the subscription, you get a monthly "credit" with which you can buy any audiobook in the store in addition to member discounts on everything. I have a long commute, and so I don't generally get any audiobooks less than 20 hours in length: these tend to cost $40-60. This is evidence that the entire store is built around getting you to subscribe, and so the model works: you can in essence have anything for $15, even if the crossed out number on the page is four times that, and you feel like a winner for subscribing even if it's all just a big game.

But indie games skew cheap, and the HB (thankfully) isn't built around any similar concept, so I don't know how workable the whole thing is. Will the monthly bundles have value or cost-effectiveness over the regular pay-what-you-want-with-tiered-extras structure? If not, I don't think it'll last.