Which cloud gaming service is the best?
“Do not have telephones?” This has to be the most iconic line when we think of mobile gaming. It’s been more than two years since Blizzard announced Diablo Immortal, and those words went viral, yet the game is nowhere to be found. But over the course of those two years, the entire gaming industry changed, evolving if you will. Cloud gaming has become possible, and it allowed people who have phones to play high-profile consoles and PC games on the go. And that’s what we want to explore today.
Cloud gaming is like Netflix, but for gaming. This is what we will say to anyone who asks for tldr; version. You pay a monthly subscription; you stream the games you play. Simple as that. For this to happen, of course, you need a game controller and a good internet connection. But other than that – you do not need a state-of-the-art smartphone, PC or console to enjoy AAA titles, such as Assassin’s Creed Valhalla, Cyberpunk 2077, Halo: Infinite, Red Dead Redemption 2, GTA V, Nier Automata, just to name a few.
Currently, there are three major cloud services available for smartphone users – Xbox Game Pass cloud gaming, GeForce Now and Google Stadia. Amazon is currently testing its Luna app and it will be shown later in 2021.
Xbox Game Pass cloud game is exactly what the name suggests and is the closest thing to Netflix. You pay a monthly fee and you have access to 100+ games that you play on remote consoles. New games are added every month, but you also lose access to some games every month. Of course, all first-party exclusives are always available. Watch like Netflix.
GeForce now is a little different. It allows you to rent an advanced PC and play on it while the service streams your sessions to your phone. The fee is lower because you have to buy every game you want to play. It supports games from the game stores run by Steam, Epic, GOG and Ubi. So if you already have a disturbingly long demand for games you would like to play but do not have a $ 4000 PC, this is a very interesting alternative.
Then there is Google Stadium. It’s like GeForce Now, except it doesn’t require you to pay for (1080p) streaming if you play games you’ve already purchased. The monthly fee (Stadia Pro) gives you access to a limited catalog of games to play for free and allows 4K HDR streaming of those you have already purchased. However, it does not support third-party game stores (unlike GeForce Now).
Amazon also has its own game streaming in the works. Amazon Luna is channel-oriented, like a cable service. Your monthly fee gives you access to a specific channel or channels for different games. Currently, it is still in closed beta testing.
We tested the three most popular game streaming services and we had lots of fun. Check out our impressions starting right after the break.