#1 Edited by AiurFlux (901 posts) -

So it will take some of the load off of the system CPU/GPU/RAM and offload it to a server to stream back, if that's the way I gather it. Kind of like what SimCity did (or didn't) do with their calculations. So like Brad said in one of the podcasts you can take 30,000 asteroids from the asteroid belt and turn it into 300,000.

However there's a problem. Even with the 24 hour phone home stipulation there is still no guarantee that users will be online at all times. So how will developers be able to implement this in games if there's a chance that it won't function at all? I mean maybe I'm mistaken here and somebody more qualified can speak on it... but it seems like a rather useless thing. Unless the Xbone needs a connection all the time, in which case it really is always online instead of the 24 hour phone home that we're led to believe it is.

I'm so confused.

#2 Posted by Triforceowner (16 posts) -

I think Microsoft said a developer can require always online for their game if they want to do something like cloud computing. It is the same as requiring an MMO to be always online. The requirement is nothing new. We will see if any developer actually goes through with it. Most likely it will be an added feature this generation, so if you are online, your Forza 5 drivatar will sync with the server. If you are not, you play the game without that feature.

#4 Posted by AiurFlux (901 posts) -

Well that seems rather underwhelming honestly for something they were touting so hard. I was hoping that it could be used for physics systems to increase the amount of particles and debris, not a "You can play the game while not actually playing the game" thing. It just seems like more hoops to jump through if developers can make their games always online or not. The messaging is just going to get so distorted and hazy if this one needs you always online, this one doesn't, but this one works either way. People are going to have to organize libraries according to that instead of alphanumerically.

Urgh. I'm so confused again. They just took a half measure with this thing instead of going, "Hey, it's always online," or, "Hey, do what you want." They're trying to cater to everybody and are pleasing nobody.

And half measures are bad, just ask this guy;

#5 Posted by BionicRadd (617 posts) -

And why not? MMOs do this as a standard practice. It's a way for MS to offer more AI power for games that need it without having to beef up hardware across the board. XBLA games and most basic single player games aren't going to need this, but huge, expansive games could make good use of it. It should open the door for big scripted events in Multiplayer games that everyone sees at the same time.

I think people are trying to make this into a big, in-your-face feature, when it's really more of a behind-the-scenes thing.

#6 Edited by spraynardtatum (2518 posts) -

I just have a feeling we're going to be seeing a lot of "SimCity like" launches next gen.

#7 Edited by Akyho (1584 posts) -

@aiurflux: You actually make a good point on the 24 hour check in, Microsoft have said themselves that one way around is to sync your phone with the xbox just long enough to do the check in and then switch it off. Except they never said anything about the "cloud computing" being so important that there is no workaround for online checks.

This should go hand in hand, you can't play the game without "cloud computing" so the 24 check in is just an addon not the thing thats blocking you from playing offline.

By the fact they are talking more about how important it is for the 24 check in and not the "cloud computing". They also talk more about not accessing updates and auto updates than what the "cloud computing" can do for games.

Titanfall and the backroom tech shows are the only thing I have heard any "cloud computing" is involved. Except Titanfall is being worked on to work on the PC so either cloud computing is coming to Windows games, or Cloud computing is not that big of a deal for Titan fall.

I have not seen anything so far that that makes me think "thats amazing it must only be done using "Cloud computing". Actually I lie, the effects of The Division, the glass physics with the cars, that makes me think WOW! this must be impossible without....hang this is on a ps4 it was demoed.....they dont have "Cloud Computing".

We probably have 10 years this time with these consoles. So come year 4 we will see what that really means I suppose.

#8 Edited by rebgav (1429 posts) -

Ignore the nonsense which came out of MS regarding their server farms providing scalable power on a per machine basis; it sounds a lot more like developers are using the power of the cloud to provide online functionality like dedicated servers for multiplayer and asynchronous processing like crunching your Forza stats and replays into an AI profile.

We will probably see a lot of games which require constant connections if games like The Division and The Crew actually have seamless co-op/multiplayer integration, so that might be more of a concern and applicable to all platforms.

#9 Posted by The_Laughing_Man (13629 posts) -

@rebgav said:

Ignore the nonsense which came out of MS regarding their server farms providing scalable power on a per machine basis; it sounds a lot more like developers are using the power of the cloud to provide online functionality like dedicated servers for multiplayer and asynchronous processing like crunching your Forza stats and replays into an AI profile.

We will probably see a lot of games which require constant connections if games like The Division and The Crew actually have seamless co-op/multiplayer integration, so that might be more of a concern and applicable to all platforms.

Dedicated servers sound fun.

#11 Edited by Slaegar (683 posts) -

Recently I came across this article that talked about the UOW developing a method to turn ocean water into hydrogen for a cleaner "better" energy alternative, just by using a few gallons of water per household a day. In theory, that sounds amazing. After I did some simple calculations it showed that not only is this theory impractical, but it would also cause more problems over time.

Without drawing too many comparisons, I feel the same way about cloud computing on a dedicated platform that is even more specifically for games. Sure Titanfall can use it to quickly do matchmaking and give you better pings, and Forza 5 can use it for AI routines, but what happens when the install base of the xbox one increases and so does the game library. Doe's Microsoft simply just create more of these computer warehouses, or do they start rationing the service to games that "need" it more. At some point, the resource is going to run out, and like the ocean water turning into hydrogen fuel, the amount of work they are do for such small gains is almost not worth it.

Not condemning Microsoft by any means, but like AiurFlux said, they are doing a half measure instead of going all in.

Did the article forget to point out that hydrogen combines with oxygen to release energy turning it back into water? The impractical part comes from using more energy to split the H2O into its base elements than you get back from combining them.

Most of this cloud business is also nonsense. Like SimCity they are likely using "The Cloud" to make you feel like less of a fool for settling with always on DRM since you think the game needs it to work. I reckon the value of the cloud sillyness will come from games that have a lot of persistent data. Processing cool stuff could happen on the server but probably can't leave server level priority or else that explosion will take a half a second too long to go off, even if it looks cooler.