Our modern media environment is a veritable Shangri-la of entertainment. From streaming services vying for our attention with hundreds of hours of top quality TV and movies, to social media and its frenzy of memes and viral trends, there’s never been more to keep us busy. Yet sometimes we need to take a more active role if we’re to stave off boredom.
That’s when gaming comes in.
Now that the gaming industry has gone truly mainstream, this sector benefits from a huge range of platforms and services designed to cater to your gaming needs. Whether you’re looking to play social puzzles with friends, arcade classics, or the latest Triple A title, there are dozens of ways to engage with your chosen gaming content nowadays. Below we take a look at the freshest, most compelling gaming services out there as we head into 2022. Whether you’re a committed Esports athlete with a gaming PC, or a casual player on your lunch break, you’re sure to find something that’ll take your interest here.
Netflix was the first true content streaming platform to begin offering this service to the public, over 10 years ago. Nowadays, Netflix has more competition than ever from the likes of Disney+, Amazon Prime and more. Yet Netflix retains its preeminent position in the sector, and now appears to be branching out into gaming.
November 2021 saw the launch of Netflix Games, an app gaming service available for Android and iOS that gives you access to a range of titles included with your Netflix subscription. This service is small and ostensibly still in a beta phase of development, but holds great promise given Netflix’s pedigree for producing and licensing great entertainment products. At present there are 5 games you can play on Netflix Games: Shooting Hoops, The Game, Card Blast, Teeter Up and the obvious jewel in the crown, Strange Things: 1984, an isometric spin-off of the popular 80s inspired TV show.
Facebook Instant Games
Facebook has been offering its users integrated games on its platform for years and it remains one of the best possible ways to enjoy certain titles. From Words with Friends to 8 Ball Pool, you’ll find a host of modern classics represented there. Facebook’s social integration means you can challenge your friends to games, compete on global leaderboards and brag about your winning streak to your news-feed, making it the premier location for browser based mini-games.
iGaming is a growing sector with many reputable platforms now offering a host of titles to explore at your leisure. One popular platform is that of PokerStars Casino – it features a range of slots titles, as well as variants of popular casino table games from blackjack to roulette. The service can be reached via an app available for iOS and Android, or a web client, giving you flexibility as to how to access it. Moreover, this operator belongs to the group of pay by phone casino websites, allowing users to handle payments through their phone provider. As far as content goes, this operator also offers novel features such as live dealer rooms, giving added immersion and excitement to your session.
Xbox Game Pass Ultimate
Xbox Game Pass Ultimate is a novel gaming platform that bridges several worlds. In one sense, it is the immediate successor to Xbox Live, the Xbox console’s in-house online multiplayer client and web-store. Yet Game Pass Ultimate has a few extra tricks up its sleeve. For one, a regular subscription to the service gives you access to a range of full games, in much the same way as Netflix gives you free range of its catalogue.
Where this gets particularly interesting though, is that you don’t need an Xbox in order to access these titles. Game Pass Ultimate can be used with any mobile device or Windows PC, giving you a lot of flexibility in how, and where, you want to play. Xbox Game Pass Ultimate also features Xcloud, Microsoft’s nascent cloud gaming service. This feature lets you stream games straight to a compatible device without having to download or install the game.