OnLive is console gaming without the console and PC gaming without the costly graphics card upgrades. Essentially, gamers create an account with the service, pay a subscription and then take their pick from any of the fully up-to-date gaming range.
The games are actually ‘played’ on machines buried inside OnLive’s monstrous servers, and the signal is beamed back to your TV or monitor over the web. If you press ‘shoot’ for example, that signal is sent through the ether to OnLive’s machine where it tells your character to shoot, before sending the resulting image all the way back to your screen.
It’s a system that means players can always have access to the newest, most graphically rich titles without having to constantly upgrade consoles or PC parts. But it is also a system that relies heavily on having a speedy enough broadband connection, as slower connections will result in serious lag.
OnLive is inviting UK gamers to its site to register a gamer tag from June 7th ahead of an Autumn release. It’s also looking into bringing the service to tablet devices, where beefier graphics could be played out elsewhere and beamed wirelessly back to your device.
Is this the future of gaming? Let us know on the Gadget Helpline Twitter feed.