Game Pass and PlayStation Now convince, but what was there before?

Game Pass and PlayStation Now convince, but what was there before?

Game Pass and PlayStation Now convince

In recent decades, the video game industry is one of those that, in all likelihood, has faced the greatest growth from various points of view. On a socio-cultural level, in fact, today we are faced with a phenomenon capable of capturing enthusiasts from any corner of the world every year, and on the technological side it is undeniable how much everything is proceeding with great strides towards an ever more marked evolution.

In short, we are talking about a sector full of potential, with all the credentials to continue to exploit it to the maximum as it has been doing for at least three decades now. In light of all this, it is legitimate to ask ourselves where on earth we will be able to get, even if the truth is only one: just as twenty years ago we had no idea what gaming would become today, at the same time now we can not at all conceive what the future. And that's the beauty of it.

Why not think about the present then, which has so much good to offer to anyone who has the luck and the pleasure of being born a gamer? In recent times, services such as Game Pass and PlayStation Now have taken hold in an increasingly important way: platforms that give access to catalogs with hundreds and hundreds of titles to download or even to play in real time, without even requiring a download. A truly impressive technology that, little by little, is convincing practically everyone. Where does all this come from? Let's take a step back a few years, up to the mid-nineties ...

A sea of ​​games, before Game Pass and PlayStation Now

Have you ever heard of Satellaview? Presumably not, and if not, you are in all likelihood either a fan of the history of the video game or true fans for at least thirty years. It is in fact a peripheral released in 1995 exclusively for the Japanese market, designed by Nintendo in collaboration with the radio station St. Gig: an ingenious device created especially for the successful Super Nintendo, and specifically to make it an even more machine. special. | ); }

Nintendo Satellaview (1995) The world was changing, and little by little it was preparing to welcome something even more ambitious. At E3 2000, the Finnish startup G-cluster announced a project that aimed to truly innovate the video game industry: a completely online catalog from which to access games and content without the need for any download, being able to count on a range of choices ever seen before. It took five years before we could touch an actually working version that, partly due to the big changes in the sector and partly due to an infrastructure not yet ready for such an important leap, did not meet the success that could be hoped for. . To date, the service is active in Japan, with the giant Broadmedia which has taken over everything by transforming it into a product that is different from the initial idea but which is finally beginning to take hold. | ); } In the mid-2000s we also find an attempt by Crytek, which in 2005 announced that it was working on a Cloud Gaming service and then suspended everything after just a couple of years: the times, according to the company , they were not yet ripe to be able to create such a platform that did not present limitations. In short, all a question of technology, still too immature to face a challenge of this type.

Meanwhile portals such as Xbox Live and PlayStation Network are being created, which offer players the opportunity to draw from libraries of thousands and thousands of games to buy them and, in many cases, to share the multiplayer experience completely online. At the same time we are witnessing the definitive consecration of Steam, which in previous years had increasingly established itself as the best solution for purchasing PC games in digital format.

Conceptions that are absolutely different from that of Cloud Gaming, but that were slowly building the foundations for a very specific scenario: giving the end user the possibility to choose among many, many products to which they can access almost at any time. That's right: almost. An adverb that technological evolution was preparing to tear down, to give life to a real revolution that we are experiencing today in our daily lives.

Towards Cloud Gaming, but not only!

What is Cloud Gaming today? Technological progress has made it an integral part of today's video game industry, and in recent years there are many platforms of this kind that have seen the light and have become part of the everyday life of us gamers. Platforms like GeForce Now, and many others… But that's not all. Alongside companies that have always been active in the sector, we find, in fact, a strong interest from giants belonging to industries not directly linked to that of gaming.

A giant like Amazon, for example, has launched Luna: a service that offers access to a large library of titles to be played completely in streaming. In 2019 Google launched Stadia, a subscription that performs the same function and whose announcement left everyone speechless precisely because of the thousand potential it can actually offer.

Are the times finally ripe? Yes and no. If it is clear how much Stadia has incredible potential, it is also true that Google itself has not always managed the various components of the project in the best possible way. Not too careful support, combined with a series of post-launch issues, meant that Stadia was overshadowed by both players and the company itself. In all this, two main actors emerge who, net of their experience, have played a fundamental role in the world of video games for more than two decades. We are obviously talking about Sony and Microsoft, which with PlayStation Now and Game Pass - a subscription that includes the Xbox Cloud Gaming service - share a market that is increasingly rich in opportunities. For everyone.

Two services that are born mainly for gaming on consoles but which, thanks to a wise and accurate development, are becoming more and more important. Today it is possible to play anywhere, with any device and with less and less marked limits: the problem related to the speed of the internet remains present, which in many not too urbanized locations still shows some gaps, which is however destined to be resolved definitively. Living a videogame experience comfortably seated on the sofa, on your smartphone while traveling by train, or even on a tablet during a break from work ... This is what we mean by everywhere, this is the revolution we are experiencing.

What does the future hold for us? A question that, as mentioned at the beginning, has many possible answers and none are really reliable. The only certainty is that Cloud Gaming will only grow again and again, and without a shadow of a doubt the next few years will put us in front of an ever wider choice from every point of view. In short, from the catalog of titles available to the platforms on which to play, we can say that yes, the best is yet to come.

What we can call the “Netflix model”, thanks to which we can have everything available immediately, is forever changing the way of conceiving the videogame medium. It is up to us fans, as always, to decide how to experience what is yet another great upheaval in the history of this sector. We close by leaving the word to you: what is your relationship with this "new" way of conceiving the video game?

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