GameStop Streaming Game Service Launching in 2013

GameStop Streaming Game Service Launching in 2013

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GameStop's upcoming cloud gaming service won't support consoles.

Though it's the world's biggest gaming retailer, brick and mortar stores just aren't enough for GameStop anymore. The chain increased its focus on digital gaming in recent years, and will be offering a streaming service starting in 2013. The cloud service will support tablets, PCs, and internet-enabled televisions, which may be partially due to feedback received during the recent private beta.

No specific date was given for when the streaming service will begin, though GameStop president Tony Bartel did elaborate on why consoles won't be supported during a conference call. "Based on consumer feedback, our success in selling mobile devices, and the imminent launch of new consoles, we have decided to move our technology to a PC-based model," Bartel said. The company is currently working with developers and publishers to make hundreds of games available for the service.

GameStop has struggled a bit to keep up with the industry as gamers use digital downloads and streaming services more and more. The retailer's sales declined in the first quarter of 2012, even though digital sales were up. Launching its own streaming service to compete with OnLive and Gaikai makes sense, though it's a bit odd that it wouldn't include console support. Given that the company isn't exactly beloved, it will probably need to offer some great incentives to convince gamers to abandon the already available streaming services.

Source: Gamasutra

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Console Gamer: You're never going to stop rubbing this in my face are you?

PC Gamer: Ouya Baby!

Please go bankrupt, gamestop. Please. The idea of 'cloud gaming' needs to die.

To run a game a certain amount of hardware needs to be available, regardless of who actually possesses it, handing over the control of it to gamestop (who can be guaranteed to short change you in any way they can get away with) is a terrible idea. In such a relationship, all the power lies with gamestop; you don't have the game, you don't have the hardware, you don't even have a permanent license to access the content you're paying for and you have no leverage apart from whatever subscription fee you pay.

Secondly, it's never going to be as good an experience as actually running it yourself, whatever the lag there is between your PC and theirs is added as lag between frames, for games relying on fast responses (see: all FPS games, most TPS games, racing games, fighting games and more) this ruins the experience, essentially making the game feel like it's running on insufficient hardware when you paid money to avoid exactly that.

Thirdly, there is no real possibility for user generated content (mods). Before the uninitiated misconstrue this as something to do with cheating (sometimes happens) I'm talking about things that might be found somewhere like http://newvegas.nexusmods.com/, the Steam workshop or moddb.com. Many gems have emerged from the Mod scene and losing it would cut out a key route for people with the technical skills and enthusiasm to work in the game industry. Valve has long appreciated the mod scene its games attract, famous examples being Counterstrike and (the aforementioned) Team Fortress 2, as well as a number of staff being found from amongst the mod communities.

 

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