One evening earlier this week my brother and I had set some time aside to play video games online (pretty lame, but 25 million people can’t be wrong), except we had one problem - my console wouldn’t connect to the wireless network.
Now, I’ve had this problem many times before and have probably spent what seems like over 100 hours trying to fix it. So often do I have to deal with it I’ve committed the, typically uninformative, error message to memory (It’s an 8013013D error if anyone happens to know a reliable fix?).
In fairness, I think it’s probably got something to do with my console being quite far from the router and, as I get older, I’ve started spending my free time on other things (like training for Sport Relief :-)), but it got me thinking about some computer gaming news I’d seen earlier last week.
The OnLive service, which Ben first blogged about in April last year has been given the availability date of June 17 in the US. Now - just as I was then - I’m somewhat sceptical of whether or not this will work. Pricing is obviously going to be extremely important for OnLive, so too will the availability of broadband networks that can take the strain.
This video demonstrates the service pretty well (albeit under no load). With OnLive you’re just seeing a video of a game that you’re controlling at home, but it’s being processed far away in a data centre somewhere. Still, gaming is very much HD these days, and the data will still have to traverse a series of tubes.
But aside from all of that, what about the connection errors, bugs and outages that we still have to put up with? When your internet connection flakes out these days, at least you can still play single-player games, some of which are the best out there. Failing that, you could always take up a new hobby.