Written by: Master Blud
I had seen this so-called OnLive system being constantly talked about, I also noticed when I purchased 2 of the Humble Indie Bundles that some of the games were supported on the platform. I ignored this platform for the longest time and did not think anything of it. It just kept passing me by, over and over again. It really felt like it was haunting me to just give it a try. Since we cover Indie Games here at VVGtv, I thought it would be appropriate to bring you into the world of Cloud Gaming. I still have my love for my Xbox Indie Games, seeing as a lot of developers are going multiplatform, I thought I would give this a shot.
The UI of the Onlive platform is really clean and really straight forward. The easy navigation from your game library and visiting the marketplace couldn’t be any simpler. There are other features on the system, the arena I found the most entertaining. I sat back and watched a whole bunch of gamers playing games, they were also live streams of gaming footage. You can go through thousands of users playing the many different 100+ games and you can also cheer them on or boo them, I just like cheering them on even if they fail a point about 10+ times. There is also a friends feature, which actually exceeds the 100+ friends that other services only give you, I have seen players with 300+ friends and was like wow, what a community of people.
I furthered my journey into the OnLive system to find another really cool feature, voice chat beta, that’s what they call it. Voice chat beta takes gamers into the Arena and you can either just listen or talk if you have a working microphone. You can chat with a gamer live while they play their game in the arena, I was like, that’s pretty cool. I then continued to find a ton of gamers just starting out and asking them questions about their experience with the OnLive service. They had either told me, it all depends on your connection, or this service is great. One individual had said this could end piracy for game as we know it, I agreed. When using the OnLive microconsole itself, you can also use a Bluetooth headset to chat with the other gamers. Some games at the moment do not have Mic support for multiplayer, but will have it sooner than you think.
Onlive is known as Cloud Gaming. What is cloud gaming you ask? Well think of it like this, take your games on demand, and put them on a server, you then pick from that server and play directly on your Mac, PC and Microconsole. No annoying waiting times, everything is fairly quick when switching between games. The only issue with this is, the speed of internet you need to play such a thing. Right now it is at 2-3mbps to get a really good streaming feed to your Microconsole , PC or Mac. There are somethings that can better your experience with the service itself, like directly connecting to your modem and stop other services such as Xbox Live or PlayStation network. I don’t really have the best internet here, as it doesn’t always stay the same speed. I tried using the service itself and was surprisingly impressed with how fast it was. I myself, run on about 10mbps but I do it through a WiFi signal. I then proceeded to set up a WiFi bridge , I am not really far from my modem, but was able to run the service via Microconsole and my Mac with the WiFi Bridge.
The OnLive platform is not just a system, well that isn’t how it started. OnLive started as just an application to install on your Windows PC, not so soon after it became available for Mac and then came the Microconsole. The Microconsole itself, is probably the most questionable piece of hardware I have ever seen. I really think the microconsole has potential. With just over a year of the OnLive service being more well-known, the library has grown insanely big. With over 100 titles is just one year. Most of these titles were all releases on the PC.
The controller seems to look like a clash of an Xbox Controller and a PS3 controller, it is labeled like an Xbox Controller but the layout controls seem to be like a PS3, I still felt very comfortable playing with this controller. While examining the controller, I noticed it has media controls underneath the analog sticks. These media controllers help you create and view brag clips. The brag clips are something every gamer should have, especially if you want to show off something epic to your friends or viewers. It makes a great conversation piece, and I was glad to see something like this. As of right now I believe the brag clip limit is set to 50, so if you don’t think one clip adds up to the epicness that you are trying to show, delete it, and create a new one.
Back to controller, it’s a pretty solid device, controlling it feels really smooth, the analog sticks feel super sleek and control your experience with the game better than most generic controllers and Mad Catz Controllers. I proceeded to test out my wired controller I had for my Xbox, and it felt absolutely amazing while shooting people up in HomeFront to playing the most simplest of puzzle games like Luxor. Since this platform has PC titles in it, a large percentage of the games have a keyboard and mouse input, you can also connect the keyboard and mouse through a USB on the OnLive system itself if you do not like to use a controller.
As I wrap up my thoughts to this system and cover the most important areas of the platform itself, I have to say, wait for the deals they have, they seem to have a lot of them, use it on your home computer before deciding if you want to actually purchase the console, this ensuring a safe landing and not too much money spent on something that you might not like later down the line. The service itself is absolutely free, you can play all the games for 30 minutes without restrictions to any part of the game, you can even play multiplayer matches if you wanted to. The other features could also help your decision in possibly buying full games. That other service is called a PlayPack Bundle, which you have over 60+ games you can play for about 10 dollars a month, or you can rent the games instead for a few nights. I give OnLive credit for being absolutely different and fun to play on, I myself enjoyed this experience and will continue to dig deeper and let you know my thoughts.
I was asked to post this, it is for OnLive in the UK. OnLive UK Service and OnLive Website
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