Cloud Gaming is the future of video games, and industry giants no longer hesitate to forge alliances to dominate this new field. The Japanese Sega and the American Microsoft announce a partnership around a development platform based on Microsoft Azure.
There is no longer any doubt: Cloud Gaming is the future of video games. Thanks to this technology, players can choose any game from a catalog, and play it via the web without any downloads or installations. No need to invest in a PC or in a console, since any screen connected to the Internet allows access to these services. The power is provided by cloud servers equipped with processors and graphic art cards.
Thus, Cloud Gaming makes video games more affordable and more practical. For the giants of the industry, it is necessary to follow the trend or accept to disappear into oblivion.
One after another, gaming moguls are launching their own Cloud Gaming platforms. The Japanese Sony offers the PlayStation Now service, while the leader in graphics cards Nvidia manages its GeForce Now platform.
The GAFAMs are taking advantage of this new paradigm and their stranglehold on the Cloud to tackle the video game market, and have launched their services such as Google Stadia and Amazon Luna. There are also startups entirely dedicated to Cloud Gaming, like the French Shadow recently bought by OVHCloud.
In the age of Cloud Gaming, the big comeback of SEGA?
What if Cloud Gaming was also an opportunity for Sega to make a comeback? As a reminder, this Japanese company was once among the industry leaders. Its consoles like the Saturn and the Megadrive marked their time, as did the licenses of cult games such as Sonic.
However, its Dreamcast console launched in 1998 experienced a commercial failure and forced the company to abandon the war of machines to become a simple game publisher.
Now, Sega and Microsoft are announcing a strategic alliance around Cloud Gaming. The goal is to enable Sega to produce games in a development environment based on the Microsoft Azure platform.
According to Sega, this alliance would be an essential component of its medium and long term strategy. This new strategy would be based on four pillars: global, online, community, and intellectual property.
On the occasion of this announcement, Sega reflects on how 5G has facilitated content on demand. The Tokyo-based firm is now convinced that streaming is the future of video games, just as this technology has transformed the music and film industries.
That’s why she wants to explore the possibilities offered by the Cloud for game development. The goal of this alliance will be to optimize processes and provide players with high quality experiences thanks to Azure technologies.
A development platform based on Microsoft Azure
This alliance, therefore, does not aim to create a Cloud Gaming service, but rather a cloud-based development platform. This would be a way to compete with Amazon and its Lumberyard engine accessible through the AWS Cloud. For its part, Microsoft already offers the Xbox Game Pass subscription service.
The relationship between Microsoft and Sega is not new. Already at the time of the first Xbox, Isao Okawa, the president of Sega, would have proposed to Bill Gates to make the console compatible with Dreamcast games to allow this console to survive despite its commercial failure.
According to Microsoft, this new alliance will make it possible to ” reinvent the way in which games are developed, hosted and managed with the aim of adding more value for players and for Sega “.
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