What is the future of cloud gaming?

in #gems3 months ago

The text is a translation and collection of articles by foreign experts, and is irrelevant to the position of Tento Play. 

“Today's world is getting more and more complicated by platform changes. Developers play their games
You have to have a strategy for where and how to put it out and how to make it profitable.” 

Recently, major cloud gaming services have been officially released, attracting tremendous attention from the game industry. The charm of cloud gaming is powerful. You can enjoy high-quality games directly, easily and cheaply on various platforms. However, it is true that the problems to be solved in the future also coexist.  

The risks of cloud gaming Hardware and license

The first is the graphics hardware problem.

One graphic card is required to service cloud gaming to one user. Before the official launch of GeForce Now, the number of people waiting already exceeded 1 million, and it is expected to increase in the future. Therefore, a more special GPU is needed that can handle each of the concurrent users. Otherwise, there may be a problem that the accessor waits or restricts the number of accessors. In addition, it is necessary to periodically replace the graphics card with the latest model, and it is not common to replace all the graphics cards in data centers serving millions of users.  

The second is the licensing issue.

Stadia and GeForceNow have different licensing policies. Stadia requires consumers to purchase game licenses separately from Stadia, but GeForce Now works with game markets like Steam, allowing them to play games at no extra cost. In both places, it is difficult for developers to make money right away. Google guarantees a license, but it still lacks subscribers. Google says "I'll give you money if I have more subscribers in the future," but many gamers are already using other cloud gaming services, and Stadia's subscribers are growing very slowly. 

GeForceNow said, "The users are telling them to buy the game, and we'll only get the rental fee for the computer that will play your game." From the developer's point of view, rather than earning additional income from GeForceNow, NVIDIA is reproducing/re-distributing the game without the developer's own consent. In the past, developers sold separate products for each platform, such as console, PC, and mobile, but due to GeForce Now, console products are streamed on mobile and PC without their consent. The contract was made by the developer and the seller (Steam), but Nvidia, a third party without any rights, pops up and distributes products on various platforms to earn profits.

In fact, after GeForce Now finished beta testing this year and paid for the service, large game companies such as Activision Blizzard, Capcom, EA, Square Enix, and Bethesda withdrew from GeForce Now. One of the indie developers' emphasis when dropping a game on GeForce Now was that "developers should be able to control their own games." 

There have been several attempts to redistribute software products such as TV streaming service Aereo and movie subscription product MoviePass. However, with the exception of iTunes, most of them did not succeed, such as getting involved in a lawsuit while conducting business without the consent of the production company or the original distributor, or spending too much money to avoid a lawsuit and making it difficult to maintain the business. As such, the cultivation business is very expensive and the risk of controversy.  

What is the solution? Growing your gamer pool, solving licensing issues, 

There are two main ways to overcome this situation. 

First, the gamer pool itself is growing. Cloud gaming services have invested heavily to attract new customers, and will continue to do so, and as a result, cloud gaming services will certainly attract new customers beyond the existing gamer community. If this happens, developers will experience an increase in sales volume as new gamers purchase games even under GeForce Now's licensing policy.

Second, it concludes a blanket licensing agreement with game developers. You get the right to distribute the game for a certain amount of money to the developers. However, if an exclusive contract becomes successful, the games that can be played will likely vary greatly depending on which cloud gaming service is used. In Stadia, only Call of Duty I and II can be played, III and IV can be played on GeForce Now, and if Sony and XBox are in a fierce competition to win the monopoly of the next game, cloud gaming will be available to users. How much is it worth? What is the fate of smaller cloud gaming services in this competition? Wouldn't developers also enjoy only a fraction of the cloud gaming market?

Looking at cloud gaming services a little more macroscopically, the following predictions are possible.

The premium gamer community will continue to focus on PCs and consoles. PCs and consoles provide a higher quality play experience than cloud gaming. Cloud gaming is predicted to make significant technological advances every four years, but each time it is too expensive to repair a huge data center. On the other hand, for PCs, technological advances that occur every year are easily reflected through PC sales.

In addition, cloud gaming can be extended to a wider field. Beyond games, other content and applications can also be distributed to multiple channels in one production through the cloud. (Create Once, Publish Everywhere)

Cloud gaming is a new change that no one has ever experienced. Uncertainty makes people afraid and anxious, but there may be new opportunities as well as risks. I wonder how the game culture will change in the future and how the game development scene will change.