Video game streaming becoming the norm is something we all know is going to happen eventually. Sony has given it a shot with Playstation Now, NVidia is also in the game streaming game, as well as a couple others. Yet we (I mean, at least me) still purchase full games rather than get on board. We’re like a bunch of dogs who know that a trip to the vet is coming. Maybe not today, but it will happen, and all we can do is wait and hope it isn’t as bad as we anticipate. According an article by The Verge on Tuesday, “Google has started emailing invites to members of the media today, inviting them to “gather around” for a Google keynote that simply promises “all will be revealed” on March 19th at 10 AM PT /1 PM ET. Google’s cryptic invite includes an animated GIF with an explosion of light in a hallway.” This alludes to Google’s Project Stream service, which had a 3-month long beta service where testers could play Assassin’s Creed Odyssey on Google Chrome.
The service itself was pretty straightforward. All you needed was Chrome and to pass the internet connection test (25 megabits per second), and to be one of the lucky people signed up for the beta. Third party controllers were accepted, and the service boasted 1080p streaming at 60fps. Assassin’s Creed Odyssey was the only game available during the beta but, with how intensive the game was graphically, was a good choice as a first test. According to the people at CNET the service performed admirably with a consistent 30fps during gameplay, hit the promised 60fps during most cutscenes, and even had a few advantages over the console. You can check out CNET’s comparison below.
There is also a bit of a more tangible side-dish rumored to pop up at the Game Developers Convention in San Francisco. First reported by 9to5Google, “a source familiar with the matter” leaked the Google keynote will not only shed more light on the future of Project Stream, but feature its accompanying hardware as well. The hardware project, first reported by The Information this time last year to be code-named ‘Yeti’, would allow the streaming service to be broadcast on televisions.
The PC gamer in me feels it is fatuous to develop a service that renders consoles obsolete and then develop a console to go alongside it. I need to remind myself, however, that the term ‘gaming’ for most people means a big screen TV, sitting on the couch, controller in hand, and there are probably people around to share the experience with (gross). With that in mind having a concrete piece of hardware is a clever idea going forward.
Will you end up switching to streaming service gaming? Are you going to stay a hard copy gamer forever? Let us know in the comments. I myself miss holding video game manuals.
The GDC conference comes in March, and Google’s keynote is set for March 19th at 10AM PT/ 1PM ET.