Posts Tagged ‘OnLive’

Cloud Cover Clearing: OnLive Shutting Down

I was surprised to hear that OnLive is shutting shut down, mostly because I’d forgotten it was still running. The cloud gaming service launched in June 2010 to a chorus of people asking “Wait, so I’d pay to have PC games look and control worse than they would on my PC?” It was a solution looking for a problem, and decided its problem was that folks who like big fancy PC games wouldn’t have PCs that could run them.

OnLive have announced that they’ll close the service on April 30th, taking all users’ streaming games and data with them.

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OnLive Lives Again: New Feature Syncs With Steam Games

CloudLift. Very light.

Remember OnLive? The service aimed to provide streaming videogames to the world, but fell foul of confusing pricing, slow internet connections and the apparent mismanagement. The company never really shut down, avoiding bankruptcy by being bought and re-created under a new company with new management and the same name. That means it’s continued to quietly work away, providing the same service to its remaining subscribers while working on something new.

I went and saw that something new last Friday, and I’ve been messing around with its beta this week. I’ll have proper impressions later in the week, but the news: OnLive is still a subscription based streaming service for games, but it’s now pitching itself in part as a partner service to Steam. You can link your OnLive and Steam accounts, and if you own a game on Steam and that game is available through OnLive, you’ll have instant access to it within OnLive. That means you can play your Steam games while travelling without an install process or a powerful computer in your travel bag.
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Flailing OnLive Sold For Only $4.8m

Oh crikey. You may remember in August that online game streaming service, OnLive, was in a spot of bother. Stories of impending bankruptcy came on the heels of a company that had previously been valued at an extraordinary $1.8bn. The next day news came that despite lay-offs, a buyer had been found, and “substantial investment” was being put into the company to keep it going. But what’s been revealed today, reported by the BBC, is that it was sold for only $4.8m. That would be 1/375 of its previous estimated value. Or 0.27%.

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Twist! – OnLive Bought, Gets ‘Substantial Funding’

Things were looking pretty grim for OnLive earlier, but now they’re just looking… confusing. The service found itself looking at a seriously stormy forecast (with a strong chance of bankruptcy – something not generally followed by a rainbow – figurative or otherwise), with reports of lay-offs flying out of the woodwork at an alarming rate. OnLive, meanwhile, coped by adamantly refusing to comment – only making the whole situation look even more dire. Apparently, though, things aren’t quite as bad as they originally seemed. OnLive’s taken a big hit, but it’s not down for the count. The cloud gaming pioneer’s been purchased, and it plans to hire and re-hire “a large percentage” of former staff members.

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Rumours Abound That OnLive May File For Bankruptcy

Gosh, this is a little out of the blue. Kotaku are reporting tonight that cloud gaming pioneers OnLive are about to declare bankruptcy. This comes from someone they say is a source inside the company, despite OnLive’s PR denying the rumour. OnLive is of course a service that allows you to stream games directly onto most web-enabled devices, letting you play tech-needy games on the most basic laptop or smart phone. It’s hard to imagine how this won’t be the future of at least console gaming. But maybe the world isn’t ready just yet.

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Nvidia On Cloud As The Future Of PC Gaming

Cue a series of horror movies set in an evil server farm.

Clouds are fluffy. They can take the shape of just about anything, too: bunnies, cars, lion kings – you name it. Oh, and they block the sun, which has been known to beam horrific, disfiguring burns down from the sky. Yet, in spite of those rather admirable qualities, we hardly ever notice them unless they’re about to open fire (read: water) on our outdoor fun or belch out a couple tornadoes. The same, oddly enough, can be said of cloud gaming. I mean, the potential’s there for a total upheaval in terms of where and when we experience super high-end PC games. But “core” game communities happily ignore all of that until someone whips out their “The End Is Nigh” sign and starts waxing incoherently about how it’ll kill hardware-based gaming forever.

As is typically the case with these things, the truth will – in all likelihood – fall somewhere in the middle. Nvidia recently announced that it’s betting on cloud in a big way with its OnLive and Gaikai-approved GeForce Grid technology, and while that’s not inherently good or bad for PC gaming, it signals the beginning of change – perhaps even a fairly major one. I spoke with Nvidia general manager of cloud gaming Phil Eisler about why he thinks cloud’s set to become the biggest thing in PC gaming within five years – as well as how that stands to be equal parts very good and potentially quite bad.

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A Fortnight Of IGF Demos Starts On Onlive Today

Sweep up a Dustforce demo
Onlive and the IGF are spooning for a fortnight. The sensual lovers are celebrating the Indie Gaming New Year by giving you access to 30 minute demos of 16 IGF finalists. The alphabetically sexy list of games is: Atom Zombie Smasher, Be Good, Botanicula, Dear Esther, Dustforce, English Country Tune, Frozen Synapse, FTL, Lume, Nitronic Rush, Once Upon a Spacetime, POP, SpaceChem, To the Moon, Toren, and WAY.
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OnLive Offers PC Games On Your Phone

I took this with my other phone. Meta.

I’m very late to the OnLive party. Cos I’ve got a PC that can play the games just fine, so, well, I’ve not yet taken the time. And then I saw news that they’ve now got it working on smart phones. I can play PC games on my phone? On my phone? And indeed I can. PC gaming is getting a lot more complicated. It’s getting a lot more complicated to know if it’s even PC gaming any more.

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OnLive Silly Sale: Arkham 2, Saints 3 For £1

Non-steamy windows

Cloud gaming service OnLive is banging its drum for new members in the UK again, so they’re reactivated their remarkable £1 offer (which they’re surely making a massive loss on – they must have ton of marketing money stored up). Your first purchase after joining currently costs just 100 pennies, and that includes the likes of Batman: Arkham City, Saints Row 3, LA Noire, Lord of the Rings: War In The North and Deus Ex: Human Revolution. All PC versions, but tweaked for OnLive – which in Arkham’s case means no GFWL. Woo! OnLive has its issues, but I really rather like it – I’ve played quite a lot through it now, and while the experience differs from game to game for a lot of titles on a decent ISP the experience is pretty incredible. Especially if you have the microconsole thingy and are sat back on a sofa – with your face stuffed directly into a monitor the cracks are that much more visible.

Oh, and if you already have an OnLive UK account, that doesn’t stop you from creating a new one purely to nab a game for £1. Repeatedly, in fact – you just need a different email address every time. Snicker.

Middle-Earth Onlive: LOTR War In The North

"I seeketh demonstrations of Northern Conflict. Be they in this cloud?" "Nay, this is a snowstorm, thou nincompoop."

Wondering whether to buy Lord of the Rings: War in the North? Depending on where you are in the world, you may have that option right now (US), on the 9th of November (EU) or in the distant future of the 25th of November (UK). All sorts of things can aid a purchasing decision, primary among them being our wise words, but few would argue against the use of a demo in addition. There is a demo for War in the North but it’s exclusive to the Onlive service, allowing a 30 minute trial starting from the beginning of the game. It should be available in the US and the UK right now.

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OnLive Is Okay

Also good for performance art in front of an amazed/disgusted crowd

Last week, cloud gaming service OnLive launched in the UK. Americans have had it for a while now, and doubtless thus look down on us as some kind of addled-brained backwater cavemen who’ve only just discovered fire, but for this small and governmentally-besieged isle having local services for this ambitious technology could be a game-changer. Or maybe not. Everyone who’s used it has something to say about it, and very often that’s ‘it kind of works but it looks rubbish on my PC.’ I would say the same thing – full-screen play on my 1920×1200 monitor looks like someone threw grey jelly at my screen and like everyone in the game is melting into the scenery. In windowed mode, I can play for a bit without being too bothered, but if I want OnLive to use more than 25% of my monitor I give up within five minutes.

Then I tried out the Micro-console thing they’ve started giving out/selling over here and my tune changed almost immediately.
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OnLive’s UK Pricing And… It’s Here. Maybe.


Cloud-based (that means it streams to your “device” from the internets, rather than being rendered by local hardware) gaming service OnLive is launching in the UK… now! You can sign up on the site and begin streaming games within a couple of minutes, apparently. The games on offer cost between £1.99 and £39.99, and the “micro-console” which allows you to stream to TVs is £69.99. I am just logging in now and will post some thoughts in a bit.

(Launcher hanging… Hmm. Maybe later then.)

Retail Deus Ex HR Coming With OnLive Code

It's weird that Ubi doesn't just use this for all their games.

Update: This astonishing story on Ars reveals that GameStop – the US’s largest games retailer – is having staff remove the vouchers because it competes with their own online service, Impulse.

Apparently people still sometimes buy games in shops! Imagine that. And if you do that with the US retail version of Deus Ex: Human Revolution, according to VG247 you’ll get a code to play the game via OnLive. That’s the service that lets you stream the game via your internets, so it’ll play on any machine with a decent connection. It’s an interesting inclusion. And makes me wonder – have you tried OnLive, or any similar service yet? What have your experiences been?

OnLive Arrives In UK 22nd September


Just to be clear – in case you’ve just returned from five years living in the jungle – OnLive is a cloud-gaming service. That’s a clever thing whereby you stream the game’s visual data from a remote server over the internet, rather than rendering it on your own PC. We’re all a bit sceptical about how well it will work, but we could soon be in a position to test it for ourselves. It’s going to launch in the UK next month, and sign up will be free. It’ll allow you to play any game for 30 minutes (goodbye lack of demos, at least) and spectate “from the arena”, whatever that means. It’ll apparently launch with 100 games, with more to follow. Those games can be rented or bought outright, depending on your wallet and taste.

It’s going to be interesting.

Storm Clouds: Gaikai Boasts Tech Prowess

Dave Perry no longer makes game. A shame.
Cloud Gaming company Gaikai are making it known that they’ve got their eyes on the prize. Speaking to Reuters, CEO Dave Perry spoke about the service’s superiority to those clunky old console things, and argued that the speediness of his tech made up for latency issues: “Gaikai’s servers are running at 60 fps. We’re using modern hardware and not five-year-old hardware.” Take that, old hardware. Perry also spoke of “new deals”, signalling a broader range of services to come.

Read on for some more thoughts on this.
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RPS Asks: Cloud Gaming = PC Gaming?

My god, it's full of videoclips

Pay attention, students – here’s your homework for today. Cloud gaming services such as OnLive and Gaikai: discuss. They’re on the rise, and approaching the point where they’re not just a fascinating gimmick but a viable way of playing high-end games at reasonable graphical quality. But what do they mean for PC gaming? Indeed, can they be considered PC gaming? And most of all – how seriously should we, and you, be taking them?
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OnLive Coming To UK This Autumn


The Cloud-based streaming game service OnLive arrives on our shabby shores later this year, which is a great thing if your PC is rubbish but your internet connection is great, because it means you will be able to play a bunch of top-whack games for cheap(ish). The UK site will be open for “registering interest and gamertags from 8pm Tuesday next week”, according to the company. OnLive are also keen to stress that they will soon have 100 games on the service – with Red Faction: Armageddon being the 100th – and that they have new tech coming to complement the service. This tech is a controller that should work with any of the wide range of devices that OnLive can stream to. It is “a Wireless Controller that is as universal as the OnLive Game Service itself. The Controller not only works with OnLive’s own MicroConsole TV adapter, but works with almost any OnLive-compatible device.” This means you’ll be able to use their gamepad with a tablet, or even some stuff like certain Blu-Ray players. So that’s clever.

I’ve still not see this service running with my own eyes, but I am keen to try it out. We’ll take a proper look later this year.

Remember: Amnesia DLC, Game Free Today

Ooh, I don't like that painting.

Super-spookfest Amnesia was one of our favourite games last year. Ridiculously scary, and mightily well crafted, the first person adventure had us shivering in our swivel chairs. And shitting in our trousers. (I think I’d gone a bit too mainstream in that previous sentence – rescued at the end.) So flipping hooray – they’re re-releasing their Potato Sack DLC, Justine, as a free addition to the game. Along with other other goodies. And it gets even free-er today. If you head to the OnLive forum you can get a code that will allow you to play the full game for no pennies.

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OnLive Drops Subs Model

Cloud gaming is the future! No, it is. It really is.
Cloud gaming service OnLive has been, well, live for a while now. Yesterday it was announced that once the first free year is up, it will remain free, with no introduction of a subscription on top of the cost of the games, as I believe a number of you predicted when this was originally announced.

We’re excited because this opens the door for the OnLive Game Service to be used by everyone whenever they feel like it, whether for playing a full game on OnLive, or for just instantly playing a demo before buying a game for a console or a PC. Or, even for people just wanting to spectate games in the Arena or friend other gamers. Whatever interests you in gaming, OnLive provides it instantly, without complexity or hassle.

I’ve still not seen this tech in action. Any American readers actually using this yet? Any impressions?