I am a self-confessed believer that the future of videogames is through cloud gaming. Don’t get me wrong: it’s not that I’m not fond of physical or digital formats, but the advantages of playing streaming eclipse – little by little – the previous alternatives. I was in the front row when Stadia came along and, as is to be expected, I have not even thought about it when getting on the car of Xbox Cloud Gaming.
The sensations? Very nice. Exceptionally positive with many nuances and qualifications. The short version is that the service not ready yet to meet the quality expectations of the gamers More demanding. At least as far as the beta I have access to. Being more precise, if you want to play DOOM Eternal, Outriders O DIRT 5 in all its new generation splendor, which is a lot, we have to wait for the final version.
That said, I already tell you that in this generation that has just started Microsoft has the highest card in the deck: the Game Pass Today it is proclaimed as the legitimate Netflix of video games, and being able to play its brutal catalog wherever you want, including mobile phones and web browsers, means a master move that forces Stadia to get the batteries and more complicates the game to a PS5 that, six months after its launch, demands more and more games that are truly next generation.
Lights and shadows of playing Game Pass from browsers
The Xbox machinery is already under full sail, avoiding dependency and the problems derived from the very fleeting passage of the new consoles on the shelves: if you want to play the newly released Outriders, Catch up with Resident Evil 7 on the eve of RE: Village or continue that game of Minecraft that you left in the middle in 2017 right where you left off, you have it at the click of a button. And what is more interesting: without depending on graphics cards or updates. Without claiming a sad mega from your PC.
But, of course, like the corporate colors of Xbox, the service is still green: leaving the fact of recovering those loading times that I left behind when I plugged in my Xbox Series X and the PS5, the resolution of
By way of illustration, here you can see two screenshots of Outriders on Xbox Cloud Gaming and Xbox Series X respectively. A comparison in which the finishes, textures and resolution of the cloud version noticeably pale compared to that of the console.
On the other hand, here you can see the also notorious differences between the browser version of DIRT 5 and that of the monolith-shaped desktop from Microsoft.
Among the points against the current beta we have, in addition to the resolution itself and the performance, an irregular response and load times that, depending on what we want to play, become very pronounced. A) Yes:
- In games like Dead Cells the sensational agility of our hero and the frenetic pace of the games are lost, although it is perfectly playable.
- On Outriders the loading times are more reasonable than in other games, but the textures take a long time to load, the drawing distance is very limited and the sudden movements of the camera can play tricks on us in the middle of a shooting.
- On DOOM Eternal the gameplay is relatively stable and gunplay still feels brutal, although on Switch it looks and moves a lot better.
- Finally, in Resident Evil 7 O GTA V the loading times are enormous, but its resolution is quite a surprise and I have hardly had problems with the control.
While the resolution and performance are well behind what is expected on a moderately prepared PC, it is worth noting that I have taken screenshots on both gaming-ready computers and an old computer that I basically use to write. And if in the most prepared PCs the result is lower than expected, in the third team what has been achieved is already a milestone.
Xbox Cloud Gaming: a devastating gaming proposition
In fairness, heading into the final version of Xbox Cloud Gaming I hope to find a quality of game at the height of that brutal proposal as a service that is already manifested on the screens of browsers and mobiles. 248 games in total, as I see in the current listing of my web browser. A figure that, by the way, will grow.
That said, the list of available games is not only overwhelming, but also endless in a matter of time: Leaving games parked as impossible to finish as Minecraft, Go Sims 4 O Sea of Thieves, reviewing the list I come across GTA V, Halo The Master Chief Collection, Skyrim, Octopath Traveller, the Final Fantasy classics and Dragon Quest XI.
A selection that goes beyond the overwhelming number of hours that it takes to reach the credit titles, but impacts on its quality: in all cases it is about jewels in which every minute of each game is enjoyed. And what’s to come at no additional price, including The Elder Scrolls VI O Perfect Dark, makes me even more optimistic about Xbox Cloud Gaming.
Xbox Cloud Gaming comes to iOS without going through the AppStore
With much of a margin of difference, Microsoft’s cloud game lands on Apple’s mobile devices. Of course, unlike the Android version, does it from outside the Game Pass app and through Edge and Chrome browsers like Safari itself. An ingenious departure on a tangent to avoid complications with the signature of the apple.
In all the games that I have wanted to try there has been a common element: the need to connect a controller to the device. Luckily, the latest version of iOS added native Xbox controller support. Chance? I do not believe it.
For the rest, the big difference between the versions of Apple devices and those that operate with Android is that the game interface of the former is the same as in PC web browsers. Which has not been any problem for me except when a game convinced me and I had to open the app to install it remotely on my console or PC. Few complaints with the decision.
To my surprise, Apple’s own browser recommends adding the web page of Xbox Cloud Gaming to the main screen of my mobile. And far from being a shortcut, it gives the impression of being a dedicated application. You can see that Microsoft has calculated the play very well in this regard, and since they are browsers There is no conflict with the Appstore policies.
Otherwise, the quality of the games is correct. It is neither surprising nor disappointing as it happens in browsers, but it is not surprising either. Perhaps, the final version of Xbox Cloud Gaming make it a real alternative to playing mobile games. Maybe even with the right peripheral, he will invite me to give him my last game of the day instead of giving it to Switch. In this regard, Microsoft has everything to gain and he is aligning the pieces very carefully.
Xbox is no longer a little machine plugged into the TV, and with it we all win
Xbox Cloud Gaming is called to be an essential cog in the increasingly valuable Xbox brand: not only reinforces the unmatched strength of Game Pass but also adds new possibilities to your already impressive catalog. A collection of more than two hundred games in which the successes of Microsoft (and Bethesda) coexist with the best of EA, Square Enix or the great little gems of Devolver Digital. Among many others.
I am very clear that this contact in beta form serves to improve the quality of the game experience, so we will have to wait for the final version to have well-founded impressions of the service. Or at least, To be able to demand properly how it should work: with a resolution, performance and playability typical of what is expected of a game in 2021 and onwards.
However, Microsoft already draws a very promising future for its video game division:
- Stadia, the direct competition of Xbox Cloud Gaming, you will have to put the batteries in order to generate a model that will stand up to you. Which is paradoxical, considering that it will take you more than a year ahead.
- For its part, the break with the hardware It means that not only can we enjoy new generation games on all kinds of devices and equipment, including old PCs, but if we have a choice, we bet on the Microsoft console. After all, it is in our Xbox account where we will have generated hundreds or thousands of hours of progress and games.
- In addition to the above, Microsoft breaks the dependence on graphics cards and components necessary to play on PC. Or, at least, it will in case of matching the quality of the game with what is expected of the service. Of course, the games put to the test are playable, although not all of them are enjoyable as they should.
- And, in the same move, Microsoft puts a window to its game store in every pocket and in every browser. Consolidating the Game Pass, legitimately as the Netflix of video games.
Definitely, the sum of all the above elements leads us to an unequivocal conclusion: the unification of video game systems (PC, consoles, mobile and web) that Xbox initiated in 2016 and sealed with the Game Pass is lining up to put you in a position privileged. And if the rest of the companies do not wake up, Microsoft can take them away.