Dave Perry has announced that a closed beta for upcoming cloud gaming service Gaikai will launch in Europe later this month.
“I just want everyone to know that our team (including the contractors) have been working extremely hard to bring the service to market in the next few months. Progress has been incredible,” said Perry. “We have all kinds of surprises in the pipe and look forward to sharing them. The first one is that we’ve decided that as all three founders are European, we would start our closed beta in Europe later this month.”
The technology behind the service, which was privately demonstrated at GDC and E3, and more recently in video form, enables users to play any game over a home internet connection in a normal browser without plug-ins or installs. Over 30,000 people have already signed up to help test the service, with Perry noting that the closed beta has two goals.
“One is to bring our servers to their knees so we can choose the final configuration before we start ordering large quantities of them,” he said.
“Goal two is to test older computers. We’ve had lots of emails from people describing their computers and 99 per cent of them have ample performance. Remember you don’t even need a 3D card to see a 3D game run on our service. I know this is strangely counter to what people expect, but we actually want to get plenty of basic office-grade XP machines testing so we can make sure we can reach the widest audience possible.”
Perry said that a USA nationwide network test would commence after the hardware configuration in Europe had been chosen.
We caught up with Perry in July to discuss Gaikai, the realities of lag and publisher attitudes to a technology that could revolutionise the way games are bought, sold and played.