Streaming giant Netflix has officially begun its foray into gaming, with two free Stranger Things mobile games now available to the streaming platform's subscribers in Poland.
For now, the service only includes Stranger Things: 1984, a 16-bit beat-em-up, and Stranger Things 3, another retro-styled RPG. Both games have been available on other platforms for a while, and for some reason they're only playable through Netflix on Android devices.
While the games are offered to subscribers from within the Netflix mobile app's centre tab, users will still be directed to the Google Play Store to install the game on their devices, reports TechCrunch.
To then play, members will need to confirm their Netflix credentials. They can later return to the game at any time by clicking "Play" on the game's page from inside the Netflix app or by launching it directly from their mobile device.
"It's still very, very early days and we will be working hard to deliver the best possible experience in the months ahead with our no ads, no in-app purchases approach to gaming," a Netflix spokesperson was quoted as saying by the website.
The company has been expanding its investment in gaming for years, seeing the potential for a broader entertainment universe that ties into its most popular shows, the report said.
At the E3 gaming conference back in 2019, Netflix detailed a series of gaming integrations across popular platforms like Roblox and Fortnite and its plans to bring new "Stranger Things" games to the market.
On mobile, Netflix has been working with the Allen, Texas-based game studio BonusXP, whose first game for Netflix, "Stranger Things: The Game," has now been renamed "Stranger Things: 1984" to better differentiate it from others.
While that game takes place after season 1 and before season 2, in the "Stranger Things" timeline, the follow-up title, "Stranger Things 3," is a playable version of the third season of the Netflix series.
With the launch of the test in Poland, Netflix said that users will need to have a membership to download the titles as they're now exclusively available to subscribers.
However, existing users who already downloaded the game from Google Play in the past will not be impacted. They will be able to play the game as usual or even re-download it from their account library if they used to have it installed. But new players will only be able to get the game from the Netflix app.
The test aims to better understand how mobile gaming will resonate with Netflix members and determine what other improvements Netflix may need to make to the overall functionality, the company said.