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A blind date with OnLive
by Sebastion Williams on 06/18/10 11:41:00 pm

The following blog post, unless otherwise noted, was written by a member of Gamasutra’s community.
The thoughts and opinions expressed are those of the writer and not Gamasutra or its parent company.


I was not expecting much, having awaited for the Phantom console's release and promise of online streaming of games. But, I must say, after spending the last few hours in attention-deficit game overload nirvana, I believe that cloud gaming has arrived.

Although initially released with oen free game code and only nineteen games to choose from, I could easily lose many more hours with OnLive. You are able to demo each game for 30 minute segments and your progress is not saved, you can watch what seemed like hundreds of games being played with no apparent lag. I was booted out a couple of times but I chalk that up to my crappy Comcast service that goes out fairly regularly (high bandwidth user, yeah right). I believe I watched all of the "Coming Soon" trailers and mainly look forward to the next Deus Ex.

I think this service will be ideal for the freelance game reviewer such as yours truly. The pricing structure currently is for three, five or unlimited days until 2013 (optimistic, ain't they?)

It remains to be seen if they have the capacity to add titles and subscribers at a brisk pace without overloading their server capacities and keeping the experience lag-free and enjoyable.

Now, for the real test of OnLive, I have a netbook and a Babbage-era laptop to try and crush my expectations. 

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Glenn Sturgeon
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The only problem i have with the OnLive concept is you never own a game since its stored on thier server.

With that being the case the games need to be dirt cheap or its no dice ($) from me.

What if they run into a similar situation as the MS cloud server glitch that ran T-Mobile's Sidekick smartphone awhile back. (nov 09)

You mentioned "Babbage-era laptop" so is the native screen resolution 640x480? High end games in low res. (i've been there 8)

They did do a demo of crysis on an iphone at the dice confernce so your net book & lap top should be fine.

Sebastion Williams
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What they charge is way too much. $59.99 for Splinter Cell: Conviction! They will need to adjust their price structure to be competitive.

OnLive requires a wired connection and at least a Core 2 Duo setup. I've been getting by with a Pentium D 3Ghz. It's a novelty for now. I believe they could corner a significant market share if they release games like Guild Wars - exclusively for OnLive, with single and multiplayer content with frequent DLC at no additional cost.