Cable Companies Want to Kick Consoles Out of the Living Room with Streaming Games

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praack

Well I guess you'll see more influx if the cap is disabled for games - of if the FCC continues to believe the idea that cable companies are splitting data on different streams for internal network and external to avoid the cap- like comcast does for thier movies.

but i am not convinced completly on the gamng front. even my mid range machines play the games well, consoles do fine- why worry about lag from a server?

I don;t download full games now- really look at that of being a waste of time. and to only stream? it's just modified rental

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h e x e n

No thanks. I actually like owning the media I'm paying for. Call me crazy. I also like gaming in 1080p, so good luck streaming next gen, triple A titles in that resolution while keeping the frames up.

I don't understand cloud storage at all, I really don't. There's too many client side solutions available for me to trust my data to a third party.

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Strangelove_424

A-freakin-men

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brigor

We need to STOP cable companies from being both monopoly carriers and content providers. It's a dangerous conflict of interest that will lead to anti-competitive practices. Like removing data caps on THEIR streaming games, but not on third-party services. It's long past the time to (a) place the content provider side at arms-length from the carrier side and (b) force the carrier side to wholesale the cable plant to competitive ISPs. Then we can talk about streaming games.

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Torqumada286

Does this mean the companies would have to increase their download speeds for the games? That could be a potential plus.

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tony2tonez

PC Gaming > Console > TV Gaming.

Im not using my 55' plasma 3D to play Angry Birds.

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Cregan89

While I find it unlikely that ISP's are going after hardcore games with these services (at least initially), ISP's network infrastructure does allow them to drop latency well below what 3rd party companies like OnLive are capable of, absolutely low enough for FPS's.

The majority of the latency that services like OnLive suffer from are caused by the internet routing layer, the intentional prioritization and delay of IP packets. Since ISP's have complete control of your connection to them, they can completely negate this issue by prioritizing all of those packets ahead of other general internet packets. Exactly the same thing they do for IPTV and VOIP. Most people's physical connection to their ISP has a latency well below 5ms, more than fast enough for any video game.

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stradric

There is an indomitable latency of about 100msec or more that renders entire genres of games, like FPSs, completely unplayable. This was seen with OnLive and Gaikai.

That being said, there are many genres that are quite playable in the streaming model. Puzzle games. Turn based games. Mostly the types of games you'd find on a Wii.

I don't think Microsoft and Sony need to worry. Nintendo maybe should.

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theplustwo

I don't think Mario games or Zelda games, or really anything that requires motion control would be very playable either. Just because it's on the Wii doesn't mean it doesn't require responsive controls.

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phoenixjc

Just because the Wii uses motion controls for there system, doesn't mean that the games truely require it. Anything that you use motion for on the Wii, could be re-mapped to a button or button combination. And I'll be honest, I have only played Mario and Zelda games with normal controllers.
Just because it's on the Wii doesn't mean it requires motion controls.

I think the comparison was that the style of game that you see on the Wii, which is a more casual/medium-core system, would be more likely to show up on a service like this. This is to say that the market that the Wii helped to bolster could be enticed to abandon the Nintendo device and just use their TV. Look at the game boy...I see a lot more kids playing games on their cell phones than with a dedicated handheld gaming device. I would say that Nintendo does have cause to worry.

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theplustwo

Sure, you might not *need* motion control for most games. However, my point was simply that because a game is considered "casual" doesn't mean it doesn't need responsive controls.

Wario Ware, Mario Party, Rock Band and Wii Play are probably the most casual games out there, but they'd all be unplayable without split-second controller responsiveness.

It seems to me that any cloud-based system would be essentially limited to turn based games like Words with Friends and what have you because of this, unless the cable companies open up some sort of super-low-latency channel dedicated to sending and receiving controller inputs.

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Peanut Fox

Wii U preorders are strong, and they'll make money on their console. Microsoft and Sony are actually going to have a hard fight ahead of them.

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tony2tonez

They had the same battle when Wii was introduced. The issue with Nintendo is the lack of gamer developers. Everything in Wii is centered around Mario, which ok but doest have the followers that Xbox and PS3 have in titles like Gears of War or Assassin Creed etc.

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Peanut Fox

And I agree. 3rd party support has been a weak point for Nintendo since they left the SNES behind, but at the very least they appear to be going after these titles, and the default control scheme of the WiiU is very similar to what both Sony and Microsoft have. So now when developers go to make games they're not fighting this wildly different control scheme.

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Peanut Fox

Because of the Wii's control scheme you need as close to 1:1 movement as you can possibly get.

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theplustwo

I can't really imagine that they'll be able to keep the latency low enough for "real" games (for the forseeable future at least), but they're already doing this to some extent with things like Mahjong and Solitaire and stuff on AT&T U-Verse.

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Peanut Fox

Seeing Samsung beta testing Gaikai streaming on some of their TVs I can imagine cable providers wanting to add another set of packages to sell you.

I haven't had cable since I started having to pay for it. I don't really watch TV. Don't even own an HD set. Guess I'm married to my PC <3

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ZX9RDan89

Everything these days seems to be, Cloud this... cloud that...

I don't see it as being such a good option, in no small part, because of data caps.

Think about it. Streaming TV services, streaming games, cloud data storage, VoIP, software downloads and/or software used from the could (google docs, or other softwares used from the internet)

Much in the same way that a $2 cup of coffee a day adds up at the end of the month, all these streaming services do add up as well. And it gets worse with smart phones, tablets and the growing number of multi-pc households.

Like Paul Lilly said in the article, it seems like a fun idea for casual, low-definitions graphics. But when it comes to real gaming, I can't see it as viable for a large portion of the population. At least as long as ISPs continue to lower usage caps.

But what do I know?...

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theplustwo

The graphics wouldn't really matter, as long as they have the horsepower on the back end to render things, which shouldn't really be an issue since they'd presumably have entire warehouses of servers processing everything in parallel, and they could always throw more processors into the mix if things aren't fast enough.

The only thing they'd need to stream down to you is the rendered video of the game. I think (as I said above) the bigger issue would be the latency you'd incur from having to send all your controller inputs over the tubes back to their servers.

Even if you were playing something with primitive graphics like the original Super Mario Bros., a half-second delay between pushing the jump button and Mario actually jumping would basically make it unplayable.

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Peanut Fox

Thing about graphics is you never know what you're missing until you've seen something better.

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