Humble Bundle replaces Humble Monthly for Humble Choice

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Acura_Max

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#1  Edited By Acura_Max

Game Spot News article on the topic

Humble Bundle is rebranding Humble Monthly and I'm conflicted about it. The biggest change is that the monthly are no longer hidden and you get to choose what games you want. The caveat is that everything now costs more and you get less (at least on paper).

So the current model is $12 per month for 10 games. The new model has 3 tiers of subscriptions. The first tier lets you pick 3 games for $15. The premium tiers gets you 9 games for $20. However, if you want everything in the bundle, you have to get the classic tier. This tier is for people who subscribe to Humble Monthly before Humble Choice launches. Everyone who gets Humble Choice after it launches won't get the Humble Classic plan. In addition, if you have the classic plan after Humble Choice launches and you unsubscribe, you will lose access to Humble Classic.

Image from https://www.humblebundle.com/monthly/classic
Image from https://www.humblebundle.com/monthly/classic

The fact that the Basic Plan costs more than the Classic Plan but offers less games is not sitting well with me. You get to pick 3 games instead of getting a mystery box, but I feel like we were already choosing the three games to some extent each month. For example, each month Humble Bundle previews 3 games in the bundle. And if you didn't like what you saw, you didn't get the bundle. The new model was probably created because Humble Bundle didn't like people doing this and wanted people to get long term subscriptions rather than something off and on.

Some people on the internet have argued that this is still value since $15 for three games is still a very good deal. And when you compare it to other subscription models such as PS Plus and Xbox Ultimate, this is 3 games that you can keep for $15 plus whatever is in the trove. When you think about it like that, the new model does not seem as bad. Some people have argued that will new model will lead to better games in the Humble Monthly. I hope it will happen.

What I don't like is that everything seems really manipulative. For example, the site does not reveal the launch date other than it will launch in 2019. That's 3 months where Humble Choice could be released. That's three months of FOMO that if you don't subscribe right away, you will miss out on getting access to the Classic Plan. There is a possible way to cheese through this. Hidden in the FAQ section, Humble says you can still get access to the Classic Plan if have an active subscription that Is paused when Humble Choice launches. So in theory, you can buy one month and pause for the rest of the year to get access to the Classic Plan. It might work, but it still feels manipulative because you still have to pay now.

All that being said, it's still possible to subscribe one month and then unsubscribe the next month. It's just going to cost more.

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sparky_buzzsaw

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That pricing structure is bizarre, and rebranding it with new names feels like a sleazy way of trying to hide a price hike. I'm already a subscriber, so I'll keep with it a month or two, but I'm not going to feel terrible about dumping this if it turns out to be awful.

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stantongrouse

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I've been a Humble Monthly subscriber since it started and, while I have enjoyed the massive backlog of games it's given me, recently the number of duplicates that have reappeared in the mystery box for long term subscribers has been noticeable, particularly if you've also bought some of their regular bundles along the way too. So, a choice of games (wholly dependent on the range included) on paper sounds good. However, for someone coming in fresh and not able to get the 'classic' pack it doesn't seem as good a value on paper to what was previously being offered.

I think with Epic offering their few free games a month, Steam still hammering regular sales and the other subscription services such as Game Pass and the like they have tougher competition now and maybe the revised model will make Humble appear more competitive. But then that is all dependent on perspective, someone who owns a number of systems and is subbed to a number of services already might not see any more reason to sign up to this than there was before - more control over choice but less stuff per penny.

Personally I'll probably stick with it for a while, but my circumstances are probably a minority amongst the folks on here. As someone with only a mid/low powered PC and a Switch I only subscribe to Humble and PC Game Pass which gives me more than I need game-wise. I really like the Humble Trove, it's got some great games that I think you can download DRM free and the charity contributions don't hurt their cause either. But I just can't see this change swaying a lot of new subs over to them.

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Gundato

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I have most of the Humble Monthlies (skipped a few early on while seeing if it was worth it. Skipped THQ Nordic because fuck them) and the writing has been on the wall. Hell, they've even sent out multiple surveys that were basically "Would you like to pay more for less?"

For context: My annual subscription expires next month and I plan to cancel (have a google reminder because it is unclear if I lose all benefits immediately).

But I kind of like this. For most of the past year it has very much been "Here are one or two games that are good and some indie shovelware" with very few gems in the blind buy portion. 14 bucks for 3 games rather than 12 for "ten" is a downgrade, but I probably would only have wanted 1-2 games anyway.

So on the months where there are really good bundles, I'll pay 20. For the months where it is good savings on a recent release, I might pay 14. And otherwise I'll eignore them.

Barring maybe November and other big sales months where pay 5 bucks for the 10% discount could actually be worth it

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BaconHound

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That's me. If one of the games was something I wanted to play immediately, I'd pay the $12 for access and then cancel the membership. Since 2017, it looks like that has happened roughly 4 times.

I am absolutely not interested in paying for an ongoing subscription and a bunch of games that I'll never play. It sounds like most of the 3-10 games are still a mystery too, right? You pay and then you pick from what they offer? In that case, I'll go ahead and double down on not being interested.

If they promote and reveal some of each month's choices, however, $15 doesn't sound so bad for a game that I definitely want and two more that I might try at some point. $3 more than what it used to be? Eh. Not the end of the world.

As a final thought, that Lite plan looks ridiculous. Is that for people that just want to spend money on...nothing?

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chaser324

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#6  Edited By chaser324  Moderator

The bottom line is that it's a price increase disguised as a rebranding/restructuring. As noted by @gundato, they've been testing the waters with user surveys for quite a while, so something along these lines was pretty much inevitable.

Lately, I've been thinking about dropping Humble Monthly as it increasingly has felt like a questionable value proposition. I don't play 90% of the games that I get through it, Game Pass is overall a better value (as long as you're cool with not owning the games), and games go on sale regularly enough that you can buy just about anything you want on deep discount within months (sometimes weeks) of release.

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OurSin_360

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tbh I'm still conflicted on them in general, like I'm not against running a business and it's also great to give to charity, but it seems like running a for profit marketed like a charity just seems a bit off.

But yeah, taking away value and adding cost to the consumer is never a good thing for a business.

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BladeOfCreation

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As a subscriber, I like the idea of choosing games--I'd rather pay more, on average, for games I want than pay a little less for games I don't want. What about people who purchased the yearly plan, though? They are drastically changing the way this works. Anyone who doesn't like it should be offered a refund for their remaining yearly accounts.

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Gundato

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@bladeofcreation: Uhm... Read a bit more

For the people with active subscriptions they still get all the games in every bundle and the same discount and are grandfathered in at the same price until they cancel.

I would have to count how many unlocks previous months had, but 10 total sounds about right. So the main argument for an angry refund would be knowing the entire contents of the bundle before locking in rather than only knowing the 1 or 2 big games.

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Jesus_Phish

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Lately, I've been thinking about dropping Humble Monthly as it increasingly has felt like a questionable value proposition. I don't play 90% of the games that I get through it, Game Pass is overall a better value (as longs you're cool with not owning the games), and games go on sale regularly enough that you can buy just about anything you want on deep discount within months (sometimes weeks) of release.

Up until this month I thought the HM was the best "cheap" option for playing games and something I'd recommend to people who want to get into games but didn't know what they liked. Then I paid €2 for a two month trial of Xbox Game Pass for Windows and changed my mind immediately. I know Humble gives you access to the Trove but honesty I don't think I've ever downloaded a single game out of it. Meanwhile I'm three weeks into my XGPW trial and I've played a tonne from it.

I'm not against this change. I've kept the HM for months on end now, even if there's not anything in the early unlocks that screams at me I hang onto it because it costs me about €10 a month and I can afford that, I'll always find something to try out of it. And if not I just donate the games.

As long as they give people fair warning of the date the "classic" tier will go away forever then I'm mostly fine with this. It is kind of shit that you could pay more than me and get one less game per month though. I also wonder if this means I'll never be able to buy a year of classic even if I'm already on the plan.

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BladeOfCreation

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@gundato: Sometimes I derp. That's what I get for skimming the topic while doing other stuff!

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SkullPanda1

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Most months I'd only get around to playing one of the game anyway, so for me this isn't a deal breaker.

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Onemanarmyy

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To me it seems like they are anticipating the audience at large becoming aware of services like Stadia, Game Pass, Uplay+ and the like and trying to hook them into their own subscription before they lose those customers entirely. How to make Humble monthly seem like great value & make people act quickly to jump in on it? You come up with a new pricing structure where your original subscription is clearly the best deal! And you only have limited time to be part of the elite club of cool people that get to play less for more!