Thursday, November 26, 2020
Gaming

New Facebook Gaming streaming service takes on Xbox, Stadia and Amazon

New Facebook Gaming streaming service takes on Xbox, Stadia and Amazon
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Through cloud-streaming, many games will be playable on Facebook for the first time ever (Pic: Facebook)

Facebook has launched several cloud-streamed games today in the US, with plans to expand both its library and availability in the future.

Facebook Gaming was first announced as a new rival to streaming site Twitch and now it’s challenging Stadia with an attempt at cloud gaming.

Five free-to-play mobile games have already been launched, albeit only in the US, and can be played on either Android devices or on PC via the Facebook gaming app.

The games are Asphalt 9: Legends, Mobile Legends: Adventure, PGA TOUR Golf Shootout, Solitaire: Arthur’s Tale, and WWE SuperCard.

Facebook intends to add more games to its library (it’s already confirmed Dirt Bike Unchained for release in the coming weeks), including PC games, but it is prioritising free-to-play titles at the moment.

‘Cloud gaming is about expanding the types of games we already offer, so we’ll start with the format people enjoy playing on Facebook: free-to-play games,’ writes Jason Rubin, the newly appointed VP of Play, in a blog post.

‘That’s one of the reasons why we’re starting with games typically played on mobile devices. In the future, our systems and infrastructure will improve to deliver more types of games – possibly all types of games. Until then, rest assured that the cost of trying our cloud games is $0.’

Some of these games, despite being accessible on the Android store, could not be played through Facebook, something that can now be achieved thanks to cloud-streaming technology.

Facebook also stresses that this is not a separate service and any available games can be played straight from the gaming tab.

Facebook has already said that it cannot guarantee the service will be available on iOS, for the same reasons as why Microsoft’s xCloud had to be removed from Apple devices.

However, Rubin states ‘While our iOS path is uncertain, one thing is clear. Apple treats games differently and continues to exert control over a very precious resource. Stay tuned as we work out the best way for people to play games when and how they want, regardless of what device they bought.’

Though the beta is only accessible in certain states in the US, Rubin promises that regional access will be expanded within the coming months.

There is currently no word on when it will become available in the UK.

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