One of the biggest announcements made at this year’s GDC was the introduction of OnLive. OnLive seeks to deliver games to any TV/computer with high-speed broadband access at a whopping 60 frames per second. Imagine, you could play Mirror’s Edge without having to buy a machine that comes with the Kung Fu Panda game.
Of course, because OnLive is a server-side, “Cloud Gaming,” platform, playing something like Mirror’s Edge might require a hefty amount of bandwidth. This is bad news for people whose Internet service providers have already been looking into charging for high usage. The Associate Press just ran a story about this very issue, with OnLive reps claiming it would take twelve straight days of gaming to reach Comcast’s 250 GB/month limit. It sounds like OnLive isn’t planning on hosting any MMOs.
But some companies, as AP points out, are testing even lower caps, with tiered payment plans.
As a gamer, I couldn’t be more excited by OnLive. I don’t have a high-end PC, and the promise of running current-gen titles on it gets me all a twitter. However, the perennially unfulfilled promise of server-side computing aside, ISPs treating OnLive like a fast-approaching meteor makes me cautious. Let’s just hope they don’t hire Bruce Willis.