Lovefilm's game rental option has really taken off after a major expansion in the past year, now up to 6,500 unique titles across seven gaming platforms, many more than most games-only companies out there. And if you want the odd DVD with your game rentals, then their unmatched catalogue of 65,000+ films makes them the top games-movie combo choice.
It wasn't always this way, as Lovefilm debuted with a small Xbox and PS2-only offering in 2005, ranking low in our charts, only rising as high as third in mid-2007 given their improvements and more positive customer comments, and up to number one in 2008.
Lovefilm's site is certainly easy to navigate. Games are easy to browse by console and then by genre within each console as well. They also include recommendations such as hot lists, most popular listings, all time favourites, new releases etc. Should you choose to rent DVDs too, you also have access to their entire library of 65,000 titles and they also offer a movie download service.
Lovefilm has a surprisingly large catalogue of 6,500 game titles--this is slightly less than Swapgame, but Swapgame has more old titles for the PS2, Gamecube, etc., where Lovefilm has an edge on newer games for the three main consoles. They stock some 1,900+ game titles for PS2, 550+ for XBox 360, 740+ for the Wii, 780+ for XBox, 500+ for PSP, 440+ for the GameCube, 1,170+ for the DS, and 410+ for the PS3.
In early 2008, Lovefilm relaunched their customer service phone line, open an impressive Monday to Friday, 8am to 8pm, and Saturday to Sunday, 9am to 4pm. This is a major feature which few sites boast, and we always suggest calling when you have a problem instead of using online forms or email.
By including games in their DVD package at only a small extra cost they offer a very competitive deal for games rental. There were some customer service issues following the October 2006 merger of Lovefilm with rival Screenselect, but these have diminished over time. Lovefilm also "powers" several other white label rental service, but the only one that carries games is Tesco--at two pence cheaper but without additional information content, streaming video, and other features, we'd never suggest choosing the watered down Tesco service over Lovefilm itself.
From our own experience, we suggest if it is games you are after more than DVDs, allocate a disproportionate amount of your queue as games, and keep your wishlist short. This effectively encourages them to send games out rather than DVDs.
Prices: Lovefilm offer one excellent value plan for four games/DVDs total out per month (two at any one time, which is really all you should need as games take awhile to finish) for £9.99, as well as two unlimited price plans: For 2 games or DVDs out at-a-time for £14.99 and 3 out at-a-time for £18.99 per month.
It is possible (and unlike other companies, easy) to cancel within the free trial period. If you cancel sometime after subscribing, Lovefilm will likely contact you a few months down the line offering a "2 months for the price of 1" deal if you come back. If you have used Lovefilm or any of the Lovefilm-powered DVD rental sites before, then it is unlikely that you will be eligible for a second go at their free trial.