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streaming wars

Netflix confirms plans to offer video games as part of subscription

Netflix is looking to level up in the streaming wars by getting into video games. 

The company confirmed Tuesday it's making plans to offer video games, which will be included under members' subscriptions at no additional cost. 

"We view gaming as another new content category for us, similar to our expansion into original films, animation and unscripted TV," the company said in a letter to investors, per The Verge

Bloomberg previously reported that Netflix hired Mike Verdu, a former Electronic Arts and Facebook executive, to lead its gaming efforts, with the goal reportedly being to have games on its platform "within the next year." It's Netflix's latest attempt to gain an advantage in the streaming wars amid growing competition from platforms like Disney+, and it comes as Netflix on Tuesday announced its "worst slowdown in subscriber growth in eight years," The Associated Press reports. Netflix previously saw a significant uptick in subscribers amid COVID-19 lockdowns. 

Netflix said that "initially, we'll be primarily focused on games for mobile devices," though it didn't offer further details about what mobile games could be included. But the company described this as an expansion of its previous "efforts around interactivity," including a choose-your-own adventure special episode of Black Mirror, and on its games based on Stranger Things.

While Netflix said Tuesday that games will be included at no additional fee, Bloomberg previously noted that the step "may make it easier for Netflix to justify price increases in coming years."