Playing video games in streaming, without downloading and directly in the Facebook application or on a browser, this is the daring bet of Facebook Gaming.
After a full-scale test on 200,000 users per week, Facebook Gaming officially launches the beta version of its cloud gaming service. This futuristic video game format allows you to play on all media, without having to download content, and with progress directly saved in Facebook.
Pseudonyms finally available
This is a big first on Facebook, users will be able to display pseudonyms and avatars other than their full names and profile photos. The Facebook profile will still remain associated with the pseudonym used in the context of the game, and will be visible to friends and other players.
Cross-play will also be activated, which means that it will be possible to track game progress or in-app purchases between the downloaded version and the cloud version of the game.
Ads playable on Android and browser in the United States
To make advertising more interactive, Facebook now allows you to try out cloud-based games directly in advertisements, using the HTML5 playable format. The purpose of these advertisements is to provide a tangible overview of the game interface to the player, without having to go and seek that experience on their own. The streaming games will therefore be launched in two formats: the full versions (free) in a new destination for Play and the ads playable in the cloud, directly in Facebook.
Note that for now, the cloud gaming service will not be available on iOS. Indeed, Facebook explains that despite Apple’s new policy on cloud games, the launch on the Apple Store is not planned for the moment. The service will therefore be available exclusively on Android and on a browser, although it is not impossible that the service will one day be available on iOS.
Games without latency issues for launch
As Jason Rupin, the VP of Play for Facebook, points out, although cloud technology is very interesting, it is too early to make any performance promises (in terms of resolutions or frame rate for example) . That’s why Facebook considers it essential to start with games that don’t suffer from latency to deliver the best possible experience to its players, right out of the box.
The first games available this week are:
- Asphalt 9: Legends,
- Mobile Legends Adventure,
- PGA TOUR Golf Shootout
- Solitaire: Arthur’s Tale.
The game Dirt Bike Unchained is expected to join the roster in the coming weeks. For the launch of the beta version, Facebook Gaming is therefore offering sports, card, simulation and strategy games, in part to avoid latency or performance concerns. Nevertheless, the social network says that the types of games are set to diversify, as cloud technology evolves.
Facebook’s commitments on this new service
Facebook wishes to reassure its users and makes several commitments from the launch to clarify its position with regard to this platform.
No impossible promises: Facebook wants to be realistic, cloud technology will evolve a lot in the years to come, and it is too early to know what the cloud gaming will look like tomorrow.
Cloud gaming is not intended to replace current gaming: Facebook explains that its service expands the world of video games, and not replace the gaming services already available on PCs and consoles.
No separate cloud gaming service: games will still be accessible in the same place as they are now, in the Games tab or in the News Feed.
Free games only for the moment: for the launch, Facebook prefers to stay in its area of predilection, free games. When the service proves its worth, Facebook is not ruling out expanding its catalog by adding more types of games in the future.
And as Facebook points out: “As crazy as it sounds, the values Facebook advocated for social games in 2010 are almost identical to the promises of cloud games in 2020, namely instant access on any browser to play with. your friends wherever you are. “.
Access to the United States first
Access to games via the cloud will be rolled out gradually in the United States starting with California and Texas, with the goal of successfully expanding the platform nationwide in the coming months. No information is given regarding the deployment of this novelty in Europe.