If you were hoping that GeForce NOW would be an all-in-one smorgasborde of high-powered PC game streaming, your hopes have been slowly dashed over the last month or so. After initially launching with support from huge amounts of developers and publishers, GeForce NOW has been bleeding games from its extensive library ever since.
Today NVIDIA announced that Xbox Game Studios, Warner Bros. Interactive, Codemasters, and Klei Entertainment are all leaving GeForce NOW on Friday, April 24th. That’s a pretty sizeable chunk of what was left in NVIDIA’s mostly-Steam-based library. “We hope they’ll return in the future,” NVIDIA said in its blog post.
WB is the big boy here: their high-value franchises include Shadow of Mordor, Mortal Kombat, all of the various games based on LEGO and DC Comics like Batman: Arkham Asylum, and a few scattered others like F.E.A.R. and Scribblenauts. Xbox Game Studios is the mega-publisher behind Microsoft’s various internal development teams, like 343 Industries (Halo), Mojang (Minecraft), Obsidian (The Outer Worlds), and Rare (Sea of Thieves), plus all of Microsoft’s first-party titles like Age of Empires and Gears of War. Klei is a smaller developer, but their survival-crafting game Don’t Starve is a huge hit, and I’m personally a big fan of Mark of the Ninja. Codemasters is known as a racing game specialist, with games like GRID and DIRT on their resume.
This comes after Activision-Blizzard, 2K Games, and Bethesda—enormous publishers all—decided to pull support for their games, even after being available on the service’s various betas. The header image of this article shows my personal GeForce NOW library at the start of the service, with semi-randomized games removed as of now.
NVIDIA is quick to point out that it still has 30 out of the top 40 most-played Steam games, plus the indefatigable Fortnite. They’ve also secured a renewed commitment from French mega-publisher Ubisoft, which says the entire history of Assassin’s Creed and Far Cry games will be available on the service today. NVIDIA also emphasized support from Epic, Bungie and Bandai-Namco.
But it’s hard to see the loss of dozens and dozens of popular games as anything but a blow to this service. Expect this kind of shifting to continue as the streaming game market evolves, mirroring the ever-changing fight for TV shows and movies we now see among online video services.