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Cloud gaming, sometimes called gaming on demand, is a type of online gaming. Currently there are two main types of cloud gaming: cloud gaming based on video streaming and cloud gaming based on file streaming. Cloud gaming aims to provide end users frictionless and direct play-ability of games across various devices.
In 2000, G-cluster demonstrated cloud gaming technology at E3. The original offering was cloud gaming service over Wi-Fi to handheld devices. Video game developer Crytek began research on a cloud gaming system in 2005 for Crysis, but halted development in 2007 to wait until the infrastructure and cable Internet providers were up for the task. OnLive officially launched in March 2010, and its game service began in June with the sale of its OnLive microconsole. On April 2, 2015, it was announced that Sony Computer Entertainment had acquired OnLive's patents, and OnLive closed its doors. In November, SFR launched a commercial cloud gaming service on IPTV in France, powered by G-cluster technology.
Nvidia GRID is a recent creation by Nvidia that is targeted specifically towards cloud gaming. The Nvidia GRID includes both graphics processing and video encoding into a single device which is able to decrease the input to display latency of cloud base video game streaming. This is important due to the impact that latency will have between what the user does and when the action shows on their screen.
LOUDPLAY announced expansion of its cloud gaming service to Ukraine, Belarus and few other Eastern Europe locations on May 18, 2018.
Cloud gaming is an umbrella term used to describe a form of online game distribution. The most common methods of cloud gaming currently are video (or pixel) streaming and file streaming.
"Cloud gaming", also in some cases called "gaming on demand", is a type of online gaming that allows direct and on-demand video streaming of games onto computers, consoles and mobile devices, similar to video on demand, through the use of a thin client. The actual game is stored, executed, and rendered on the remote operator's or game company's server and the video results are streamed directly to a consumer's computers over the internet. This allows access to games without the need of a console and largely makes the capability of the user's computer unimportant, as the server is the system that is running the processing needs. The controls and button presses from the user are transmitted directly to the server, where they are recorded, and the server then sends back the game's response to the input controls. Companies that use this type of cloud gaming include NVIDIA (GeForce NOW), LOUDPLAY, Playkey, PlayGiga, CiiNOW, Ubitus.
Gaming on demand is a game service which takes advantage of a broadband connection, large server clusters, encryption and compression to stream game content to a subscriber's device. Users can play games without downloading or installing the actual game. Game content is not stored on the user's hard drive and game code execution occurs primarily at the server cluster, so the subscriber can use a less powerful computer to play the game than the game would normally require, since the server does all performance-intensive operations usually done by the end user's computer. Most cloud gaming platforms are closed and proprietary; the first open-source cloud gaming platform was only released in April, 2013.
P2P cloudless gaming – a type of cloud gaming, where remote computers for game execution represented by community of individuals. Critical difference from cloud gaming is that game is executed on actual PC and it is streamed on one-to-one basis. The actual game is stored, executed, and rendered on the remote computer station and the video results are streamed directly to a consumer’s computer over the internet. P2P cloudless gaming allows closing latency gap: remote computer could be located within one internet provider. Network protocol in P2P cloud gaming smartly chooses the best fit between remote computer and consumer’s device.
Cloud gaming based on file streaming, also known as progressive downloading, deploys a thin client in which the actual game is run on the user's gaming device such as a mobile device, a PC or a console. A small part of a game, usually less than 5% of the total game size, is downloaded initially so that the gamer can start playing quickly. The remaining game content is downloaded to the end user's device while playing. This allows instant access to games with low bandwidth Internet connections without lag. The cloud is used for providing a scalable way of streaming the game content and big data analysis. Cloud gaming based on file streaming requires a device that has the hardware capabilities to operate the game. Often, downloaded game content is stored on the end user's device where it is cached. Companies that use this type of cloud gaming include Kalydo, Approxy and SpawnApps.
Cloud gaming services (Gaming as a Service (GaaS))
|Name||Company||Access status||Development status||Coverage||Bring your own games (BYOG)||Platforms||License||Price|
|Elastic Virtualization Engine ||Mixedtek.com||Active||Active||US, Japan, UK, Germany, Singapore and other countries||Yes (cloud computing: Full computer in the cloud)||Windows, Android, STBs, SmartTV, OTT Box||Proprietary||Depends on operator services|
|Shadow||Blade SAS||Active||Active||France, Germany, UK, USA (selected locations)||Yes (cloud computing: full computer in the cloud)||Windows, macOS, Android||Proprietary||€44,95/month (1 month subscription)
€34,95/month (3 month subscription)
€29,95/month (12 month subscription)
|LOUDPLAY||Loudplay Global||Active||Active||Russia, Ukraine and other CIS countries, Poland, Baltics||Yes (cloud computing: full computer in the cloud)||Windows, macOS, Android, Linux||Proprietary||starting from €0.2 per usage hour|
|LiquidSky||LiquidSky||Active||Active||USA, UK, Central Europe,||Yes||Windows, Android||Proprietary||US$14.99/month (One-Time)
|Vortex Cloud Gaming||Active||Active||Central and Eastern Europe||No, existing library. For some you need additionally a license, e.g. at Steam||Windows, Chrome, Android, Android TV||Proprietary||US$9.99/month|
|GeForce Now||Nvidia||In closed beta||Active||n/a||No, existing library. For some you need additionally a license, e.g. at Steam||Shield, Windows, macOS||Proprietary||N/A|
|PlayStation Now||Sony||Active||Active||n/a||No, existing library from Sony (more than 500 games)||PlayStation 4, Windows||Proprietary||€14,99/month|
|Project Stream (possible names: CloudCast or BlastLamp)||In closed beta||Active||USA (selected locations)||Until now only Assassin’s Creed Odyssey||Chrome||N/A||N/A|
|Project xCloud||Microsoft||In closed beta||Active||n/a||Unknown so far||PCs, consoles, mobile devices||N/A||N/A|
|Project Atlas||EA||In development||Active||n/a||Unknown so far||Unknown so far||N/A||N/A|
|Wiztivi Gaming||Active||Active||n/a||Unknown so far||Windows, macOS, Android, iOS, STBs, Orange, SFR||Proprietary||Depends on operator services|
|Blacknut||Active||Active||n/a||No, existing library from Sony (more than 500 games)||Windows, macOS, Linux, Android, Android TV, Amazon Fire TV||Proprietary||£12.99/month|
|GameCloud||Cloudzen||Active||Active||n/a||Windows, macOS, Android, iOS, SmartTV, OTT, Chrome||Proprietary||N/A|
|Gaming: Solved.||Active||Active||n/a||Windows, macOS||Proprietary||US$1.49 per usage hour|
|PixelStellar||Active||Active||n/a||Windows||Proprietary||€1 per usage hour|
|WADE||Active||Active||Spain||No, existing library from Sony (more than 500 games)||Windows, macOS||Proprietary||€9,99/month|
|PlayKey||Active||Active||CIS countries, Germany, UK||No, existing library. For some you need additionally a license, e.g. at Steam||Windows, macOS||Proprietary||€24,90/month|
|Turbo.net||Active||Active||n/a||Windows, macOS, iPad||Proprietary||Free access|
|Hatch||In Beta||Active||Baltics||No, existing library. For some you need additionally a license, e.g. at Steam||Android||Proprietary||N/A|
|Dalongyun||Active||Active||China||Windows 7, Windows 8, Windows 8.1, Windows 10, Android, Android TV||Proprietary||￥3/4 per usage hour|
|Snoost.com||Probably discontinued, the Alpha has ended||Unknown||No||Yes||Windows, macOS, Linux||Proprietary||€12,95/month (480p)
|GameFly Streaming||Discontinued||No||No||Amazon Fire TV, Samsung Smart TV, LG WebOs 3.0 Smart TV||Proprietary||US$9.99/month|
|Leap Computing||Discontinued||Discontinued||No||Windows, macOS, Android, iOS, Windows Phone||Proprietary||N/A|
|Big Fish Games|| Discontinued
|Discontinued||No||Windows XP, Windows Vista, Windows 7||Proprietary||N/A|
|G-cluster||Discontinued||Discontinued||No||G-cluster, Orange, SFR, NTT Plala, VNPT||Proprietary||N/A|
|Gaikai||Discontinued||Discontinued||No||Windows XP, Windows Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8||Proprietary||N/A|
|Gface||Discontinued||Discontinued||No||Windows Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8, Windows 8.1, Windows 10||Proprietary||N/A|
|InstantAction||Discontinued||Discontinued||No||Windows XP, Windows Vista, Windows 7||Proprietary||N/A|
|Windows XP, Windows Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8, Windows 8.1, macOS, Android, OnLive MicroConsole||Proprietary||N/A|
|Playcast Media Systems|| Discontinued
|No||Amazon Fire TV, Samsung Smart TV||Proprietary||N/A|
|Ubitus GameNow||Discontinued||Discontinued||No||LG Smart TV, Google TV, Verizon, Windows Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8, Windows 8.1, Windows 10, macOS||Proprietary||N/A|
Game streaming systems
P2P gaming services
|Name||Company||Access status||Development status||Source code available?||Bring your own games (BYOG)||Platforms||License||Price|
|DROVA||DROVA||Active||Active||No||Yes||Windows||Proprietary||€0.8 per hour|
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- "Utomik | Your Unlimited PC Gaming Subscription". www.utomik.com. Retrieved 2018-11-14.
- "Never Upgrade Your PC Again to Play the Latest Games with PixelStellar Cloud Gaming!". PixelStellar. Retrieved 2018-11-14.
- "WADE App". www.playwade.com. Retrieved 2018-11-14.
- "PLAYKEY". playkey.net. Retrieved 2018-11-14.
- "Turbo Containers - Bring your applications everywhere". Turbo.net. Retrieved 2018-11-14.
- "Cloud Gaming for Mobile - Hatch". Hatch. Retrieved 2018-11-14.
- "云电脑-免费云电脑下载-超级云游戏-达龙云电脑【官网】". www.dalongyun.com. Retrieved 2018-11-14.
- Cook, John (August 21, 2013). "Full memo: Big Fish CEO announces job cuts, cancellation of cloud games business and closure of Ireland and BC facilities". GeekWire. Retrieved June 18, 2014.
- (in Turkish) Sony tarafından satın alınan OnLive hizmetlerine 30 Nisan’da son veriyor
- Assets Available | OnLive
- GameFly acquires Playcast, launches streaming service
- GameFly buys Israeli cloud gaming company Playcast
- GamingAnywhere - An Open Source Cloud Gaming System
- GamingAnywhere License
- (in Turkish) PS4 Sistemini Uzaktan Oynatma Windows® PC / Mac
- "Prepare For Launch – Rainway". Rainway.
- "Installing Parsec". Parsec. Retrieved 2018-02-09.
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