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From Cloud Gaming to Retro Games – A Guide to Game Streaming Platforms

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Retro Games
Retro Games

Game Streaming Platforms are a fantastic way to access a variety of different types of video games instantly. Instead of having to go to the trouble of downloading every single game you want to play to a console or gaming PC, with a streaming platform you can play your favourite games on your favourite devices, sometimes even on your mobile phone. 

Why you should use Game Streaming Platforms 

With the sheer variety of different gaming experiences that are available in the industry today, it makes sense to play using streaming platforms and services. Not everyone can afford to pay for the latest gaming console or upgrade their PC into a gaming rig, but with a streaming service, you can access the processing power you need for top-notch gaming sessions even on your work laptop.  

Streaming platforms are also convenient and suit different budgets. There are options to join services by paying a monthly fee, which gives you access to a full library of games, to purchase single games on an a la cart basis, or, in some cases, to play free games from different genres.  

What do I need to Stream Games Online? 

All you really need to access game streaming platforms is a suitable and compatible device, such as your home PC, work laptop or mobile phone (depending on the service you want to use) and membership or a subscription to the site. Each service sets its own rules for use and accessibility, but typically, once you’ve signed up with a platform you can get gaming straight away.  

If you’re more serious about gaming or have the budget to invest in accessories, a gamepad is a lot more ergonomic and enjoyable to use than your mouse or keyboard. Gamepads from the likes of Sony and Microsoft, such as the DualShock 4 and Xbox Wireless Controller are actually with most of the platforms listed in this article, however, Google Stadia and Amazon Luna work best with their own branded controllers. 

Amazon Luna – The New Kid on the Block 

First launched in October 2020, Amazon Luna is one of the newest platforms on this list, but it is nevertheless impressive and will suit experienced and novice gamers alike. 

Offering several different channels for gaming, the service includes subscriptions to both Amazon’s Luna+ channel and the Ubisoft+ channel, which providers a better range of games including Assassin’s Creed Valhalla.  

AntStream – For Retro Gamers 

If your taste in games lies more in decades past, AntStream will be right up your street. This online streaming service focuses solely on classic computer and arcade games from the 1980s, including Commodore 64, Amiga and Spectrum ZX games. 

There are actually over 1,000 different games to play on the platform, ranging from mainstream classics like Space Invaders to the more obscure Super Sprint and Splat! 

PokerStars Casino – For Casino Fans 

This particular gaming platform is something of a pioneer in the industry, having been one of the first to launch back in 2016. Unlike the other platforms on this list, PokerStars doesn’t run a subscription service for online casino games, instead, gamers can sign up for free and then choose to participate in real-money gaming activities such as live dealer blackjack and progressive jackpot slots. 

As one of the longest-running iGaming platforms, PokerStars Casino has attracted a global following for its wide range of classic and modern online casino games.  

Google Stadia – One to Watch 

If there’s one platform that represents what cloud gaming services could be like in the future, it’s Google Stadia. The service was launched to much fanfare in winter 2020 and incorporated an in-house game development studio as well as its cloud gaming service. While the former has since been closed down, to give further opportunities for third-party developers to launch games on the platform, Stadia gaming is still going strong. 

At present, the service is the most limited in this list. A monthly subscription gives access to a limited number of free games, but premium titles like Doom Eternal need to be purchased separately. This hybrid approach to cloud gaming does offer players more flexibility, and being part of the Google family, Stadia games can stream in-browser via Chrome, on TVs through Chromecast Ultra and on several smartphones via the Stadia app.

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