Console-quality games are now available through Facebook thanks to a new partnership with Gaikai, who are launching a beta version of their cloud-gaming service through the social network.
A similar proposition to OnLive, Gaikai will let Facebook users subscribe to a service where the processing and graphics intensive duties of running a top-tier PC game are are done remotely on super-computers. Gamers in effect are then controlling a video feed of their actions, piped into the Gaikai Facebook app.
“People don’t want to leave Facebook to play games – Zynga’s phenomenal success is proof of that,” explained Gaikai creator David Perry.
“Cloud Gaming means that the game doesn’t need to be downloaded and run on your computer, it literally means the game runs out on the internet, in the cloud, with the experience being streamed to the players.
“Most video game publishers are now seeking to grow their digital customer base and unlike movie and music services like Netflix and Spotify, Gaikai gives the game publishers relationships with the customers.”
The games currently available through Gaikai on Facebook are Saints Row – The Third (USA), Dead Rising 2 – Off the Record (USA), Magicka (USA & Europe), Sniper – Ghost Warrior (USA & Europe), The Witcher 2 – Assassins of Kings (USA & Europe), Orcs Must Die! (USA & Europe), Farming Simulator 2011 (USA & Europe).
A fast broadband connection is needed to get the most out of the application, as well as Java being installed on your PC. Demos are available to all who sign up for Gaikai, while you’ll have to cough up for a subscription if you intend to play the full games.