The writing is on the wall. We’ve said it before: buying, and renting, games from a store is quickly becoming the next casualty of the Internet. Blockbuster died, and it’s likely only a matter of time until GameFly dies too as companies stop publishing physical discs and move towards digital only downloads. GameFly has a plan though: “to begin publishing mobile games for the iOS and Android platforms, as well as launching the independent GameFly GameStore for Android later this fall.”
From the sounds of it, and there’s very little detail to go on here, it sounds like GameFly wants to be Steam for Android. Which is nice, but it’s the publishing for iOS thing that has piqued our interest the most. Is GameFly planning on becoming the next Chillingo? It certainly sounds like that’s the plan according to GameFly’s SCP of Business Development and Content Sean Spector. While the company is planning on becoming a publisher for iOS, the announcement seems to focus most heavily on Android. “We plan to be a leading player in mobile games by launching our retail GameStore for Android and helping to fund mobile developers of all sizes to publish, promote and sell their smartphone and tablet games.”
We plan on being a lot of things, but the real question is whether or not GameFly can actually make it happen. Their business may certainly hinge on the success of this move. It may not be this year, or next, but GameFly is going to have a very difficult time renting video games if game publishers stop shipping game discs with their titles and rely on digital downloads exclusively.