I’ve played more games on the cloud than on a dedicated PC or console since late 2019. In that time, I’ve traded the usual limitations of native gaming for a more untrammeled, more versatile experience. These are the six reasons I prefer cloud gaming platforms like NVIDIA’s GeForce NOW PCs and consoles.
Instant access to games
Waiting for downloads and updates is one of the most frustrating aspects of gaming, especially for gamers who have little time to lose. With the cloud, however, these hurdles largely do not exist. Services like GeForce NOW, Xbox Cloud Gaming, and Google Stadia host and stream games directly from servers, which means that from the moment a game shows up in my library, I can play it immediately with no additional waiting time.
Game updates are also provided automatically as they become available; I never boot my computer just to find a list of titles that need a patch. However, there have been a few instances where a game on GeForce NOW would momentarily drop out, but these were rare for me.
— Zach Laidlaw (@ztlaidlaw) May 28, 2022
Versatility of the screen
Whether it’s a console connected to a TV or an expensive GPU connected directly to a PC, both are considered stationary gaming options that would require some trouble to move. However, when it comes to cloud gaming, almost every screen I own is a potential gaming rig.
I can play games on my desktop after a day at work, relax on the couch in front of the TV at the weekend, and even play a game or two on my phone before bed. This level of performance and versatility can only be found in a gaming system designed to grow with a range of device form factors.
Cloud platforms are also great for travel and vacations. While it’s a hassle to lug a console or gaming PC from one place to another, cloud gaming doesn’t require any special hardware. With a stable Wi-Fi connection, my trusty phone, tablet and laptop can be my gaming rig in no time.
Unlimited game storage
As games become more graphics-intensive, they require more storage space. This has been evident in titles like 2019’s Call of Duty Modern Warfare takes up an absurd 231 GB of storage space. Just add a few more entries and a PC or console SSD will quickly fill up.
These restrictions do not apply to cloud gamers. Every supported game from a given service is hosted on a publicly shared server, and players who own a license for those games can just click one in their library and dive right in. This gives me unlimited access to my entire library without having to install/uninstall games, manage multiple SSDs, or worry about running out of storage space.
Unlimited cloud storage
Saving and backing up game data can get messy on a PC. While services like Steam Cloud do a good job, they can sometimes fail and cause irreparable losses (if your games support this feature at all). You could set up your own backup solution, but these are cumbersome at best. Fortunately, cloud platforms shine here too.
In addition to unlimited game storage, cloud players get unlimited cloud storage for all their game data. Not only does this ensure the latest save files are always available on all my devices – no matter what screen I’m using – services like GeForce NOW even add cloud save capabilities to titles that don’t natively support them, such as: Kena: Bridge of Spirits on the Epic Games Store. As a result, my game data is always up to date, backed up and ready for my next outing.
GeForce RTX 3080 performance without problems
NVIDIA’s GeForce RTX 3080 is one of the most desirable GPUs in the world. Unfortunately, it’s notoriously hard to find, and even if you can get one on Amazon, they have a few catches. For starters, they draw up to 320 watts of power (RIP your electric bill), they generate enough heat to fry an egg, and they need to be kept cool for optimal performance. In short, they’re expensive to buy, expensive to maintain, and generally cumbersome to use.
Or, as in the case of GeForce NOW, you can bypass all of this inconvenience and stream the power of a GeForce RTX 3080 to your devices via the cloud. For $19.99 per month, GeForce NOW’s RTX 3080 tier brings high-performance graphics, stability, and ray tracing to not just my computer, but my phone, tablet, and TV as well. Even better, I don’t have to worry about power, cooling, or maintenance—NVIDIA handles all of those things for me, leaving me nothing to do but enjoy my games.
No more upgrades
Gaming hardware alone is expensive enough. The cost increases even further when you factor in the time, money, and effort required to maintain that hardware and potentially upgrade it as it becomes obsolete. For decades, it’s been common practice to buy the latest and greatest GPUs and consoles as they come out, but it doesn’t have to be that way.
Just as NVIDIA maintains the RTX 3080 that I use to stream games to my devices, the company will also upgrade my rig when the time comes. That means that at some point in the not too distant future I’ll be able to get a 40-series GPU without having to physically find one, buy one, swap it out on my desktop, and maintain it. NVIDIA goes above and beyond to ensure I get the best performance while saving tons of money and relieving any headaches that would come with buying a new GPU.
So start NOW with Geforce
There are quite a number of cloud gaming platforms to choose from, but there is only one that I consider to be the best. GeForce NOW offers the most games (1,300 free and paid titles from places like Steam, Epic Games Store, and Ubisoft Connect), the highest performance, and the broadest regional coverage compared to Xbox Cloud Gaming, Google Stadia, and Amazon Luna.
How well it works for you may vary based on your location and Wi-Fi connection, but there’s only one way to know for sure. Try GeForce NOW for free with the Basic tier, or unlock even more power and features with the Priority tier for $9.99 per month or the RTX 3080 tier for $19.99 per month.