Cloud Gaming & Me

Cloud Dosage About Us

My general history with video games is relatively straightforward. I have been a gamer since I was able to hold a controller! My first console was the SEGA Master System, and from there, I have progressed with console generations, up until our current gen where I own an Xbox Series X and a PlayStation 5. 

Cloud gaming however is a slightly different story for me and it started with a little cloud gaming service called OnLive. For those who may not have heard of OnLive, it was a cloud gaming service that was unveiled at GDC in 2009. It allowed users to play a catalogue of around 30 games in the cloud on various devices, pretty much like most cloud gaming services we have today. However, OnLive also had a micro-console, which came also came bundled with a dedicated controller. 

OnLive piqued my interest from the moment it was announced and when it launched in the UK in 2011, I was able to secure myself a micro-console. There had been an OnLive launch event, I believe at a Eurogamer Expo, and attendees were given free micro-consoles as a gift and of course, most of them found their way on to eBay, which was where I secured mine.

When the micro-console arrived I had to move around my gaming set-up so that I would be able to run an ethernet cable directly from my broadband router into the micro-console. I remember my initial impressions were that of being very impressed when I first tried the service. The FPS title ‘Homefront’ was the first game I played and it worked pretty well, considering back then my maximum broadband speed was around 20mbps download. I also remember being impressed with the spectator feature, where you could watch other people’s game sessions. I will be honest however, my gaming time with OnLive did not last long, I found that, while certain games would work quite well, the performance on others was poor and as I was very integrated into the Xbox ecosystem at the time with Xbox 360. Thus, I quickly drifted away from OnLive and I ended selling the micro-console and the controller before the OnLive service was purchased by Sony in April 2012 and the service closed down.

Of course, Sony would go on to launch their own cloud gaming service, PlayStation Now. It launched here in the UK in March 2015, and I will be very honest, I had no real desire to try it at the time at all. I did subscribe to it for 1-month when the PS Now service went live on PlayStation 4 but it never really hooked me as a service I wanted to use regularly. I still feel the same way about PS Now to this day. It is safe to say that my feelings in regard to Project Xcloud are similar to that of PS Now. When Microsoft first announced the service in 2018, the thought of being able to play my Xbox library on the go had me very excited and intrigued. When I eventually got hands-on with the service, however, I could not help but feel a little disappointed. Yes, the performance was fine, but that was it, it was just fine. Maybe it was my own fault for setting my expectations too high. I am pleased however that as time has gone on, Xcloud, or Xbox Cloud Gaming as it is now called, has improved vastly and has definitely become a very solid cloud gaming option. 

The passion that I now have for cloud gaming was really a two-pronged affair and it started at GDC 2019 when Google officially lifted the lid on their cloud gaming platform, Google Stadia. My interest in the cloud gaming platform that Google was building was already present thanks to the Project Stream test that they had run the previous year. I was not able to participate in the test but the fact that people were able to play Assassin’s Creed Odyssey at a high quality in the cloud and via a Google web browser had me very intrigued. As soon as Stadia was showcased at GDC 2019, I was hooked. I knew then that it was a platform that I wanted to invest my time into, and when the pre-orders for the Founders Edition went live later that year at their Gamescom showcase, I was there right away to get my pre-order secured!

Also in the Summer of 2019, I managed to secure a spot on the beta for GeForce NOW. The very first game I played on GeForce NOW was Dirt 4, and I remember being blown away with how well it performed, especially as I was using my laptop, hooked up to my Xbox controller on a wireless internet connection. It really got me excited about cloud gaming and of course, Google Stadia because I thought ‘Hey if NVIDIA can deliver performance like that with GeForce NOW, imagine what Google will be able to do with Stadia!’

It was during this excitement that I decided to go ahead and create my own little gaming blog I decided that I wanted to be focused purely on the latest Google Stadia news. I had written video game news for various sites over the years but this was the first I had ventured out on my own. I knew it wouldn’t lead to becoming some sort of huge video game website but I was so passionate and excited about cloud gaming and Google Stadia at the time, that I just wanted to do something different, something that would help not just promote Stadia but also help to promote cloud gaming. A few months after I started my blog, I was invited to join the team at Stadia Source. And now I have been invited to join the team at Cloud Dosage – so perhaps that little Stadia-focused blog did some good after all! 

Of course, all this leads me to where I am with cloud gaming at this current time. I think everyone knows how the Google Stadia story unfolded, although I am disappointed that Google took the decision to close down Stadia, I still loved my time gaming on the platform and of course, writing news about the platform. With Stadia, Google proved that you did not need console hardware in order to play high-quality games. I really do wish that things had ended up differently for Stadia.

 Currently, most of my cloud gaming is done on GeForce NOW, it really is a fantastic service and the with the recent introduction of the RTX 4080 Superpod’s and the Ultimate Tier membership, it is by far the best cloud gaming service available at the moment. 

I still love cloud gaming. I will admit that when Google announced that Stadia was going to be shut down, I did have a little bit of a lull in regards to cloud gaming that lasted for quite some time. Recently however I have felt that excitement creep back in; I think in part to the news that subscriptions such as Xbox Game Pass will soon be coming to GeForce NOW, as well as Sony announcing some of their own cloud gaming plans which include being able to stream PS5 titles in the near future. I still firmly believe that cloud gaming will play a huge part in the future of video games. Personally, I am buckled in and ready to continue the journey! 


Lee Reid

Scottish video game enthusiast who is very passionate and a big believer in cloud gaming. Also loves to chat about video games.

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