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Only three years later it closes its doors with a serious economic and playable problem.
Xbox and Microsoft's Project xCloud is their new attempt at cloud gaming. While it has a similar layout to Google Stadia, it does not have the same lofty goals. xCloud is just another way to play games, rather than a substitute for your console.
Nonetheless, it's on target to make the list of the best cloud gaming services. Apart from a search bar and a tab for recently played games, it's almost devoid of functionality. You can read a summary of each game, look for one, and, of course, play one. Then again, the barebones style doesn’t come as a surprise.
The xCloud server is equipped with 4 Xbox One S consoles. It's unclear whether games are rendered with the combined strength of all 4 systems or whether they're distributed in pieces. Regardless, it makes no difference on the desktop. The games look great, but you'll have to wait a long time for them to load. Games are presumably stored on regular hard drives used by the older Xbox One S hardware.
The aim of xCloud is to make it usable on as many devices as possible, which means cross-saving capabilities. To encourage you to play across platforms, Microsoft is using the same method as the new Xbox Play Anywhere software. You'll be able to stop playing on one device and catch up where you left off on another platform.
Microsoft's Azure cloud infrastructure is one of the biggest benefits it has over other cloud gaming providers. Project xCloud currently supports over 50 titles, with the number expected to grow in the near future. Microsoft has started to extend the xCloud lineup since its beta launch with just a couple of titles, so you can hope to have something similar to Xbox Game Pass in the near future.
Project xCloud offers a fascinating insight into the gaming world of the future. Despite not hitting the same heights as Google Stadia, xCloud offers a good selection of capabilities such as broadcasting high-quality, intense games without missing a beat. However, the platform and wireless networks need to be improved more to make it the best it can be.
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