It’s been a year and half since the Xbox One was released, and we’ve still seen very little real-world application of the game-changing cloud stuff they trumpeted about before release. In reality, the only thing I’ve seen is the terribly-named Drivatars in Forza – and that’s really just fancy talk for ghost cars. There have been hints and teases about cloud implementation and offloaded processing, but nothing remotely resembling real world use. Could that change? Stardock’s Brad Wardell reckons so.
Speaking on the latest, Xbox-centric Inner Circle podcast, the Stardock Boss argued that the cloud potentially brings with it a wealth of benefits. He argued that latency wasn’t as big an issue as people seem to think it is, adding that for most, their internet connections are faster than the transfer rates from a DVD drive. It’s faster to load things from the cloud, he asserts, than it is to load from a DVD. He has obviously never experienced internet here in South Africa.
Wardell believes the cloud could help with world simulation, and games like RPG’s where the rendering is done by the console itself, but the simulation of the living, breathing world is offloaded to a network of servers.
He said that if Microsoft gets it working, “a lot of things become possible.”
And it’s the same sort of vague, wishy-washy promises that we’ve heard since the Xbox One was released. It sounds good, but I just don’t see it ever happening. One of the biggest problems with using “the cloud” for your processing is your game will immediately be limited, or even become lifeless if your internet connection drops. And even worse- your in-game experience becomes determined by the quality of your internet connection.
I’d love to see offloaded cloud processing make a quantifiable, impressive difference in a game – but all we’ve seen and heard is pipe-dream stuff.
Last Updated: April 20, 2015