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Iwata talks Next Gen consoles, finds Cloud Gaming strange

Nintendo boss Satoru Iwata has cast doubt on cloud gaming - what many proclaim to be the future of the industry.

He told analysts during an investment question and answer session that he finds the fervour over the internet-powered tech "strange"
.

With both Microsoft and Sony expected to incorporate cloud gaming into their next generation consoles (Sony recently shelled out $380 million for David Perry's cloud gaming company Gaikai), game streaming looks set to expand its audience.

But Iwata said cloud gaming is held back by the inherent latency that comes with it, with action games in particular seriously affected.

"A cloud is an attempt to process information online on a server, as opposed to doing so on individual machines in the hands of the users," he said.

"What this implies is, since the time to transmit data over an internet connection is never negligible, there is always some latency before you receive the result of your input.

"Of course, there are types of games on which delays have no effect. In such instances, it may perhaps make sense to have an input means as well as the ability to display images at hand and let all the information be processed on a server. On the other hand, for some highly interactive games, action games in particular, the time required to reflect the push of a button on the screen is critical and the frame rate (the number of times a screen can be updated in a given second) determines the fluidity of the movements.

"This means that there are some types of games that can be put on the internet and others that cannot. By the laws of physics, it always takes some time to transmit data, and given the current level of internet technology, there is bound to be some latency during the processes of a server receiving data, producing images instantly and sending them back.

"There are many things that cloud gaming cannot do by design, but this fact has not been communicated well to the public, and I find it strange that many people claim that cloud gaming is the future."

Iwata said the discussion of cloud gaming progresses naturally into the discussion of the future of dedicated gaming platforms and the suggestion they will eventually die out.

It is a belief held by many in the industry. Some think the next generation of consoles will be the last as cloud gaming strengthens its position within TVs and mobile device power increases.

Nintendo takes the opposite view. "Naturally, our stance is that dedicated gaming platforms will not die out and we are determined to create a future where they will not," Iwata said.

Nintendo plans to integrate its software development methods, operating systems and build-in software and software assets for future platforms so they can be used across different gaming machines. If this plan comes off, Nintendo will be able to make more platforms, Iwata said.

Iwata also touched on Nintendo's steadfast view that pushing graphics power is not its aim. The Wii U, Nintendo's first high definition console, has been criticised in some quarters for not offering a significant upgrade on Microsoft and Sony's current generation consoles, and with the next Xbox and PlayStation set to push graphics even further, and the ever-increasing power of PCs ever present, Nintendo's home console tech could be left further behind.

But Iwata is playing a different game. "It is natural that there will be more things that battery-run devices can do thanks to technological advances and game consoles will become more powerful," he admitted. "However, if we try to linearly pursue this direction, software development will become so complicated that we will eventually face a situation where cost recovery becomes a serious issue.

"Therefore we feel that we are nearing a saturation point in terms of simply improving performance or enhancing graphics. What is far more important for the future of video games is whether we can make new propositions in other aspects and create games out of something that people never expected to see in the form of a game."

Game design legend Sigeru Miyamoto chimed in on the debate, saying, "what Nintendo should do this time is create something that is more fun to play on our devices." He pointed to the impressive sales of Animal Crossing: New Leaf in Japan as evidence that this policy can still prove fruitful.

"The sales of Animal Crossing: New Leaf we released last year in Japan have already assured us that, as long as we create software that meets certain demands from the consumers, such as a game title they really want to play by any means and they want to do so without worrying about the battery life of their handheld devices, they will be willing to purchase it," he said

http://www.eurogamer.net/articles/2...-out-as-threat-from-next-gen-and-mobile-looms
 

mrklaw

MrArseFace
Jun 10, 2004
59,895
2
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Windsor, UK
I find that side of cloud gaming confusing too. I'm not sure what problem it solves. Local computing power is increasing rapidly - especially in smartphones and tablets, which means to scale up any reasonably successful Gakai/onlive type service would require massive investment. Just sell people boxes.
 

grimshawish

Banned
Dec 30, 2011
9,162
0
0
Cloud gaming offers no benefit to the business or the consumer. Anyway he describes people advokating it as strange, he fully understands the idea himself.

I peraonally think cloud gaming has no future, but storing some data mighy. E.g. demos or levels that download as you play.

You should always have the machine that processes that data though. It makes zero sense not to. Its more expensive, less efficient, less reliable and with lower quality to stream.
 

Sowee

Banned
Dec 13, 2012
145
0
0
I'm with Iwata. I cant seem to find cloud gaming viable and as good as standard gaming.
 

Herb Alpert

Banned
Nov 20, 2012
4,793
30
555
Paris, France
I know that a lot of people will laugh at him, but I agree with him. Cloud is strange and I don't like it. The fact that you are no more owner of what you play open the door to a lot of abuses.
 

Nibel

Member
Oct 18, 2011
27,700
0
0
twitter.com
There are some games that would work great "cloud gaming"-wise

And then there are many, many games that wouldn't. Personally, I don't want to be dependent on my internet connection while playing singleplayer games; things might change in the future, but for the next few years: nope
 

Poyunch

Member
Dec 29, 2009
15,193
0
690
Misread this as "Cloud Gaming storage" and somehow they were going to use it. That's basically the only thing really useful about "The Cloud" in terms of gaming.
 

Ushojax

Should probably not trust the 7-11 security cameras quite so much
Nov 1, 2009
27,316
0
0
"The sales of Animal Crossing: New Leaf we released last year in Japan have already assured us that, as long as we create software that meets certain demands from the consumers, such as a game title they really want to play by any means and they want to do so without worrying about the battery life of their handheld devices, they will be willing to purchase it," he said

This is the golden rule. Software sells hardware, it always has and it always will.
 

gofreak

GAF's Bob Woodward
Jun 8, 2004
43,345
2
1,645
I'm not sure what problem it solves.

The problem of a high barrier to content consumption.

Number of people who might play your games minus number of people who are willing to buy a machine just to play those games = the size of the opportunity that cloud gaming can help to partially address.

Local computing power is increasing rapidly - especially in smartphones and tablets, which means to scale up any reasonably successful Gakai/onlive type service would require massive investment. Just sell people boxes.

Pumping out a million boxes a month and distributing them around the world also requires massive investment, all in the aid of helping people consume your content.

It's really very simple to me. It's not about replacing boxes any time soon, it's about opening a new avenue to your content for more people.
 

JDSN

Banned
Sep 13, 2006
23,947
0
0
Kotaku: Gut that made Kirby clueless about Cloud gaming.

Its hard for me to be a hater of Cloud gamers due being in a country in which the MSRP for a new 360 game is about $80, but im fully aware that most of the games I own arent truly mine
 

Maedhros

Member
Apr 16, 2010
6,680
0
0
For once... I agree with him on some modern stance. I don't really see Cloud Gaming as the future. Just a nice bonus, if the latency is low, of course.
 

Cartman86

Banned
May 31, 2006
8,580
0
0
Seattle, WA
www.twitter.com
Is it even possible to reduce lag on cloud gaming with the current tech we have to the levels of local streaming? In an ideal situation using the cables that exist in the best internet enabled land in the world (South Korea?) If not there is zero hope for it. Perceptible lag is the worst thing possible. Local streaming is the only thing that seems valid. Incredibly valid in fact.
 

Nibel

Member
Oct 18, 2011
27,700
0
0
twitter.com
Kotaku: Guy that made Kirby clueless about Cloud gaming.

 

Prime crotch

Banned
Nov 8, 2006
14,873
0
0
Portugal
Cloud gaming offers no benefit to the business or the consumer. Anyway he describes people advokating it as strange, he fully understands the idea himself.

I peraonally think cloud gaming has no future, but storing some data mighy. E.g. demos or levels that download as you play.

You should always have the machine that processes that data though. It makes zero sense not to. Its more expensive, less efficient, less reliable and with lower quality to stream.

The idea is to deallocate the processing from the final client's side, which on paper is amazing, smaller, more effieciente devices and so on.
 

Kokonoe

Banned
Dec 2, 2011
14,574
88
655
I thought it was rather humorous Nintendo (Iwata) finds something strange, but usually it's everyone else that finds Nintendo strange when they are releasing their next console or handheld.

Back on-topic, I don't see myself ever using cloud gaming as hiccups or latency bother me and I easily notice it, especially in fighting games and action games. I mean, in this day and age the internet is a lot faster than it use to be so you may just simply download what you need in a short bit of time if you want to go the digital route and without the cost of latency.
 

Herb Alpert

Banned
Nov 20, 2012
4,793
30
555
Paris, France
Is possible to even reduce lag on cloud gaming with the current tech we have? In an ideal situation using the cables that exist in the best internet enabled land in the world (South Korea?) Local streaming is the only thing that seems valid. Incredibly valid in fact.

But there will be disparities between players, depending on their internet access, am I right?
 

RyoonZ

Banned
Jan 12, 2013
2,008
0
465
Bo
Agree with Iwata.
Also Cloud gaming means all digital which I won't support ever.
Box gaming forever.
 

gofreak

GAF's Bob Woodward
Jun 8, 2004
43,345
2
1,645
Is it even possible to reduce lag on cloud gaming with the current tech we have to the levels of local streaming? In an ideal situation using the cables that exist in the best internet enabled land in the world (South Korea?)


Yes. Not all lag is caused by the network. Even if you hold the network still (and, globally, it's not holding still...), there's improvements being made and to be made on the server and client sides that can reduce lag.
 

Nexus Zero

Member
May 7, 2006
2,822
7
1,280
I think cloud gaming as it stands today will be DOA within a year. Streaming a video of your inputs will absolutely never be good enough for VR, either for the head tracking of the headset or the inevitable hand and body tracking accompanying it.

I do see cloud processing as a massive part of locally-run executables though. Things like speech processing, even streaming of actual assets, will be commonplace. But the actual 3D runtime will be local.
 

Nexus Zero

Member
May 7, 2006
2,822
7
1,280
Also while I sympathise with the "box gaming for life" crowd, you guys are fucking high. I understand the ideal of ownership as much as the next Wii owner who has ever been burned by Nintendo's archaic, if not broken, model. On the other hand you have Steam, which has remembered and kept games available to me after 6 years of not owning a PC, games I would have thrown away or sold had they been DVDs.

However regardless of the pros and cons of it, if nothing else I'd be mentally preparing myself now for a future in which you have absolutely no choice in the matter. Absolutely everything is moving towards digital distribution and I'm not necessarily just talking about media. In 20 years when you're printing out bespoke products from 3D printers, or streaming all your movies and music, do you honestly think that games will still be sold from stores in boxes on discs? Insanity.
 

Majmun

Member
Dec 15, 2005
21,532
494
1,655
NeoGaf
It is the future. I'm glad they're starting to use it now. It will only get better.

I'm sure Nintento is going to use it too eventually.
 

LeleSocho

Banned
Jun 13, 2011
16,021
13
760
I don't think that anyone in the industry in the consumer side thinks that cloud gaming is a viable solution for the present or near future.


But here's what i think: Iwata thinks that cloud gaming isn't going to be big? Watch next gen defined by cloud gaming.
 
Feb 5, 2009
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Cloud gaming offers no benefit to the business or the consumer. Anyway he describes people advokating it as strange, he fully understands the idea himself.

I peraonally think cloud gaming has no future, but storing some data mighy. E.g. demos or levels that download as you play.

You should always have the machine that processes that data though. It makes zero sense not to. Its more expensive, less efficient, less reliable and with lower quality to stream.
One of the most ignorant statements of the last few days. Apoligise for my bluntness. There's a tech barrier for cloud gaming right now, but with time i'll get reduced.

The companies entering the arena early will benefit from the experience, you know like it happened with online. Jut look who is playing catch up now in this arena and can't quite deliver. Do you ever considered that?
The same way people don't want online games right?
Thank you! I want to see how this statement is defended defend that now.
 

Shion

Member
Dec 7, 2011
3,846
1
495
Coming from the man that also underplayed the value of online gaming, online services and HD.
 
Sep 23, 2004
14,343
3
1,550
Cloud gaming will probably always be inferior to local gaming, but there's a future for it.

Or at least cloud saving and universal accounts. FFS Nintendo.
 

Foffy

Banned
May 14, 2009
22,563
2
0
Also while I sympathise with the "box gaming for life" crowd, you guys are fucking high. I understand the ideal of ownership as much as the next Wii owner who has ever been burned by Nintendo's archaic, if not broken, model. On the other hand you have Steam, which has remembered and kept games available to me after 6 years of not owning a PC, games I would have thrown away or sold had they been DVDs.

However regardless of the pros and cons of it, if nothing else I'd be mentally preparing myself now for a future in which you have absolutely no choice in the matter. Absolutely everything is moving towards digital distribution and I'm not necessarily just talking about media. In 20 years when you're printing out bespoke products from 3D printers, or streaming all your movies and music, do you honestly think that games will still be sold from stores in boxes on discs? Insanity.

I don't mind a digital model. I do mind a cloud model. I'd happily take the former and absolutely abandon this hobby if the latter is what we're going to get as the future.
 

soqquatto

Member
Jul 18, 2007
1,844
0
0
What this implies is, since the time to transmit data over an internet connection is never negligible, there is always some latency before you receive the result of your input.

expecially if data transfer is handled in the usual Nintendo fashion. also, nobody is really surprised that Iwata cannot comprehend technological advancements nor think about the future in this regard.
 

Cipherr

Member
Dec 15, 2007
28,079
1
1,025
Kansas City Missouri
I don't want to play action games over the cloud with that shitty latency.

Period.

Now Puzzle quest or something? That could work. But noone should be solely shifting the entirety of their console design around cloud gaming exclusively at this point in time.

The tech just isn't there yet for full support across all gametypes and genres. Whether or not the supporters want to admit it, cloud gaming it still very much in its infancy.

expecially if data transfer is handled in the usual Nintendo fashion. also, nobody is really surprised that Iwata cannot comprehend technological advancements nor think about the future in this regard.

You have snark, but you didn't at any point prove him wrong. He is absolutely right about latency, and it doesn't matter what connection you are using or how good the servers are. Latency is a big problem for cloud gaming in LOTS of gaming genres.
 

Haunted

Member
Nov 16, 2006
78,223
18
965
He's absolutely right, for now.

If we ever get the tech for cloud gaming up to the same level of offline solutions, though...
 

Majmun

Member
Dec 15, 2005
21,532
494
1,655
NeoGaf
I guess he didn't mind the awful latency and lag of the Wii motion controls when Nintendo released them...

Just like motion controls, cloud gaming will get better in the future.
 

DragonSworne

Banned
Aug 23, 2011
12,539
1
0
I don't understand why it has to be either or with cloud gaming and non cloud gaming....

There are huge advantages cloud gaming provides. One of them is access and availability. Why limit yourself to consumers who have purchased your box only? Nintendo should do both.

Nintendo is being too conservative once again. They fail to see the benefit of certain technology and allow themselves to easily get scared by risk.

Nintendo should pursue cloud gaming for one specific game, Pokemon. It's perfect for it.
 
Sep 15, 2011
12,984
1
0
Cloud gaming offers no benefit to the business or the consumer. Anyway he describes people advokating it as strange, he fully understands the idea himself.

I peraonally think cloud gaming has no future, but storing some data mighy. E.g. demos or levels that download as you play.

You should always have the machine that processes that data though. It makes zero sense not to. Its more expensive, less efficient, less reliable and with lower quality to stream.

really agree with this. America's broadband situation is a complete mess, by that I mean you could have blazing fast internet here, and only dial up 30 minutes away in another location. So even IF they could get cloud gaming to run perfect with no difference between it and being locally played it still wouldn't be viable in majority of locations. I say this as an avid user of Netflix, Hulu Plus, and Spotify, however, those things don't need nearly the same bandwidth or demands that cloud gaming would have.
 

Nexus Zero

Member
May 7, 2006
2,822
7
1,280
I don't mind a digital model. I do mind a cloud model. I'd happily take the former and absolutely abandon this hobby if the latter is what we're going to get as the future.

But as I said in my previous post, there will be ways of doing "cloud" gaming that aren't necessarily how its done today, for instance you could stream in assets as needed, meaning that games that will continue to take up more and more space don't need to be downloaded in one chunk. You could still play instantly the way you do now with cloud gaming, without immediately downloading a 25GB runtime or without sacrificing IQ or input response.
 
Dec 12, 2006
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Cloud gaming is nothing but a pipe dream that is far from practical for consumers or the console platform owners.

Bandwidth speeds, bandwidth caps, latency, server build out costs - the list goes on and on why it won't work on a global scale. This isn't likely to change in the foreseeable future, no matter what the cheerleaders of cloud gaming are saying.

I tip my hat to Dave Perry for selling Gaikai to Sony for $380m.

That was some incredible emperor's new clothes shit he pulled right there.
 

Raonak

Member
Aug 19, 2010
8,353
1,404
955
29
New Zealand
dreammodule.com
The amazing thing about cloud gaming, and why I think it'll have a future, is because you don't need to code for different devices.

Just code it for the server machine, and it can then be playable on any device.

Imagine having a tablet, PC, smartphone, and computer, which all have access to the same catelog of games, and all with cloud saves. You would also, never have to theoritically buy another device for new games, since it's all handled server side.


I do think it's too early right now though, the infustructure isn't there in most parts of the world.
 

Ol No Bones

Banned
Jan 8, 2013
6,733
1
0
Well the infrastructure for the Internet will get better and faster so an investment in cloud gaming could prove profitable. I know on live worked fairly decently. Is there a way the cloud could enhance certain aspects of a games graphics when used with existing hardware?