For those of you who’ve been tuning in, you may have read my OnLive review last week. As much as I wanted to give it a better score, I just couldn’t push an inch past 3.5 out of 5. Cloud gaming is certainly an amazing feat, but it could be so much better than it is. How? Well, I have a few ideas:
1. Create More Servers
I’m going to start with an obvious one and say they need more servers. The latency is just too much to play certain puzzle games, first-person shooters, and just about anything else time-sensitive. For all I know, the server I’m connecting to is a thousand miles away. I’d also like to see exactly how many milliseconds my delay is and what kind of bandwidth I am using.
2. Extend The Multiplayer Network
When playing OnLive multiplayer, the players to play with are those using OnLive. I thought that because these were PC games, I’d be able to play with other PC players. I guess not. Playing Borderlands can get mighty lonely when there are just a few early adopters online. I’d imagine OnLive is trying to keep things to their servers to ease delay and over reaching networks, but this is truly unfortunate. Hopefully they can make it work.
3. Make PC Games The Focus
Much of the library for OnLive is ported games. With OnLive working only so well, they’re not really filling in an empty space in the market. I can play DiRT 2 on my PS3 and Borderlands on my Xbox 360. By offering a more PC-centric library, OnLive could offer non-PC gamers a platform in which to experience high-end gaming for a more reasonable price. Console players could be playing great games like The Witcher 2, robust RTSs and more!
4. Support Mods
If there is one thing that PC has over consoles, it’s their flexibility. A lot of us have played some pretty awesome mods on PC that extend the life of our games far beyond that of the console experience. Installing mods can be kind of tricky, but if OnLive managed mods for games and let you turn them on and off through a control panel, it could be potentially monumental. OnLive could boast having the definitive versions of games like Torchlight and Oblivion.
5. Have PlayPass Support All Games
I don’t really get it, but for whatever reason, the PlayPass games can often only be played with the PlayPass. Then again, not all games are on there. This makes for a really confusing platform and deciding whether or not the price is worth it can seem like an obscured task. With the titles not honestly being worth shelf price at this point, I’d rather they bumped up the price of the PlayPass and simply included all the games. The PlayPass as it is may be the only thing worth purchasing if the consumer already has a console.
So there it is. I know a lot of you people may be thinking, ‘Why didn’t you suggest a better and bigger library?’ Well, they’re honestly trying, but getting developer support is critical in that effort. They have to make some improvements if they want publishers on board, so maybe these ideas could make that difference. Who knows? I just know I’ll be keeping an eye out.