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Microsoft xCloud Game Streaming - now powered by Series X


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It didn't work for me on my 2.4ghz only phone last month and now it's far far better on the same phone. It actually starts up games. 

 

Also tried it on my works laptop and it worked great. 

 

The service is still in beta as well. 

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On 01/07/2021 at 23:46, ZOK said:

It seems a key factor is service load….Stadia could quite conceivably have massive scalability potential and relatively low usage, with XCloud being the other way around (especially in beta)…throwing money at it fixes it if that’s the case.


I strongly suspect it’s this. Usage will have dropped off a cliff compared to the initial heights of the beta period, and gameplay is sorted out as a result.

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My performance is still isn't very good. I mean, I'm playing Outriders and it's okay, but the graphics looked really compressed and not great (like a bad YouTube video) and there's just ever so slight amount of lag to be noticeable and feel off. I don't know why, I have a 200mb line with decent ping and low jitter but it just looks rough. 

 

Its not at a level I would pay for,  certainly. I still have quite long load times (Forza Horizon 4 especially) so it doesn't feel like it's running off an X blade, even though that rollout has apparently been completed. 

 

It's a shame. 

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Yeah just tried Streets of Rage IV again on my Mac (wired connection). Very impressive picture quality but a clear feeling of about 100ms input delay. The stage took a decent time to load so I'm not convinced it was a Series X.

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I don't think they ever said they'd replaced everything with Series X hardware did they?  Certain games are probably enabled on the X hardware and fall back to the old hardware when all the X slots are used.  Again an issue which will improve over time I hope.

 

They really need to work on the image quality though, even when the input lag is acceptable it still looks a blurry pixelated mess.

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2 hours ago, Jonny5 said:

I don't think they ever said they'd replaced everything with Series X hardware did they?  Certain games are probably enabled on the X hardware and fall back to the old hardware when all the X slots are used.  Again an issue which will improve over time I hope.

 

They really need to work on the image quality though, even when the input lag is acceptable it still looks a blurry pixelated mess.

I saw a screenshot from an MS site (I thought it was posted in here or the Game Pass thread) that said it was now complete?

 

I've never had good image quality whenever I've used it, so perhaps I've just been unlucky or that really is the best ill get. I mean it's playable but it's not visually appealing. 

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Quote

We’re also making significant improvements to the overall experience: Xbox Cloud Gaming is now powered by custom Xbox Series X hardware. We’ve been upgrading Microsoft datacenters around the globe with the fastest, most powerful Xbox hardware to give you faster load times, improved frame rates, and an experience of a new generation of gaming. To ensure the lowest latency, highest quality experience across the broadest set of devices, we will be streaming at 1080p and up to 60fps. Going forward we’ll continue to innovate and add more features to enhance your cloud gaming experience.

https://news.xbox.com/en-us/2021/06/28/xbox-cloud-gaming-now-running-on-xbox-series-x/

 

I dunno, certainly implies it'll all be XSX if they've finished upgrading datacenters.

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Yeah, that's the thing I recall reading (not a screenshot at all) and Outriders was meant to be one of the first games to go XSX too. Tried it again earlier and it looked and ran really badly, which is so frustrating.

 

Like I say, it wouldn't be something I specifically paid for because, for whatever reason, it doesn't run anywhere near well enough on my setup.

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Tried it on my MacBook, 5GHz and Ethernet, different browsers, and on my iPhone with 5GHz WiFi. 200Mbps Internet, 5ms ping to the router. Utter, utter shite.

 

Tried it a few days ago away from home on my iPhone (in Oxford), also using Virgin Media, and it was pretty playable. A few little hiccups here and there, but definitely good enough.

 

Back home in Manchester, it’s shite again. So it’s surely a location thing, distance to nearest data centre or something? I dunno.

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I’m playing Yakuza LaD on my laptop while the other half plays on the PS5, and it’s almost perfect today. I’ve had some very iffy performance out of X-Cloud in the past, but maybe I got Series X hardware tonight? Anyway, no noticeable lag, some stuttering on occasion, but very smooth.

 

Beng able to just pick up where I left off on my paid-for Xbox copy on the streaming Gamepass version on a completely different device is fantastic. Microsoft have really nailed the user experience. 

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I had another go with this last night and after a quick go on that being a cloud game the graphics were nice and clear and the input seemed responsive so thought I’d try Forza Horizon again. 
 

What a difference! I was able to navigate around some corners without fishtailing into oblivion. I splashed out on a Ferrari and spent 45 mins cruising around the map and even completed some events. 
 

The encoding in this really struggles once you get any decent speed up though. Driving slowly it looks ok, but speed up a bit and it quickly turns into a blocky mess which is a shame. 

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Are there any plans to add the Cloud functionality to the console itself. I know someone's going to say what's the point. I'm thinking if when you want reward points for doing the tutorial on a game but don't want to download 100gb of data and don't want to do it on you small phone screen.

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I thought they added it in the recent update when it became available for all in the browser. 
 

Edit: They didn’t, they talked about using it to allow new games on old xboxes. 
 

Quote

For the millions of people who play on Xbox One consoles today, we are looking forward to sharing more about how we will bring many of these next-gen games, such as Microsoft Flight Simulator, to your console through Xbox Cloud Gaming, just like we do with mobile devices, tablets, and browsers,” wrote Will Tuttle, the editor-in-chief of Xbox Wire


Interestingly Flight Simulator isn’t available on xcloud yet. 

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So you want to stream the game that's already streaming map data?  You'll want to stream the streaming while flying over streams next.

 

 

Please, don't cross the streams.

 

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22 minutes ago, Jonny5 said:

Given the amount of chat in the FS thread about downloading, patching & content packs it seems like the perfect game to stream. 

Flight Sim is as much a platform as a game, perhaps more so.

 

This means that they'd need to fix the update/deployment first. An important part of flight sim is the third party marketplace - revenue for microsoft, asobo & the wider community - so if those can't be deployed quickly and on demand, the solution wouldn't work.

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On 29/07/2021 at 01:37, Harsin said:

Are there any plans to add the Cloud functionality to the console itself. I know someone's going to say what's the point. I'm thinking if when you want reward points for doing the tutorial on a game but don't want to download 100gb of data and don't want to do it on you small phone screen.

Yeah, at the very least you'd think they'd get an app for the XB1 at some point, plus Windows machines.

 

I'm going to sound like a broken record, but here we go. I realized the 1k points for the monthly GP quest was up today, and I was too weekly quests short. I fired up Sims 4 to make someone pass out (just make them stand put and fast forward time) and eventually I realized I was using 4G, not wifi. I realize Sims is probably the perfect game for this, but I couldn't perceive lag at all. Just to check, a quick speed test gave me 44ms and 49mbit. Almost positive it was running on an XSX, given how quickly the game loaded.

 

Ironically, I'd be better off on my phone because data is unlimited, and it was no worse than wifi. I don't have a good sense of how many people around here are WFH and thus not hogging cell data.

 

You can perhaps see this thing doing numbers when they release that streaming stick, or they make a Roku app or something.

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  • 4 weeks later...

Thought I'd use this to play some Slay the Spire on my phone (Samsung S21 Ultra) one evening this week whilst away from home having a staycation.

 

The internet here is ok - 20MB down and 3MB up.

 

The game was utterly unplayable in the Xbox Game Pass android app. Blocky picture, tons of lag, pausing. 

 

About to give up, I then tried it in Chrome using the web streaming and it was perfect.

 

No idea if this is a traffic shaping issue with the app but thought I'd let everyone know that the android app is essentially way behind the web streaming in terms of how it handles data, it seems.

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I think it seems to be a lottery how well it works to be honest. I'm sure people have been saying how well the android app was working for them. That's the thing that puts me off bother with it at the moment as you can't be sure of how it's going to work (that and the fact that I have never had it perform in anyway acceptably on my iPad).

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The android app, while on data (~45mb down in my area), works as well as my cable internet connection. Samsung Note 9.

 

I finally did have an issue with xCloud the other night. While playing on my laptop in Edge, the picture did get a little blocky in Farming Simulator. This is with line of sight to the upstairs mesh satellite, although I didn't check to see if I was still connected to the main router downstairs. Otherwise it's always spot on. It's actually always more consistent than streaming my XB1 to my Surface Pro using the windows Xbox app over my wired LAN ever was. Which is ridiculous.

 

That's not to write off anyone's crappy experience, more to say that when the stars align it all works exactly as it should. 

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I was previously having a great time with it, but recently it has been unusable via Android. 

 

Android:

Firing it up now and the whole picture is a distorted mess, and button prompts don't respond properly.  Pixel 5 via WiFi. 

 

PC via Chrome

Loaded perfectly, video crisp and audio coming through well. Same WiFi sat at the same desk. 

 

Hurumph. 

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Just had it working perfectly on my Pixel 5 but only on 4g. WiFi was hopeless for it. 

Very strange and not sure what's causing it. Have full strength, connecting via 5GHz and over same connection my laptop works fine using Chrome. 

Maybe something about phone priority on the router, or maybe the pixels just aren't very good over WiFi. 

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18 hours ago, PeteJ said:

Just had it working perfectly on my Pixel 5 but only on 4g. WiFi was hopeless for it. 

Very strange and not sure what's causing it. Have full strength, connecting via 5GHz and over same connection my laptop works fine using Chrome. 

Maybe something about phone priority on the router, or maybe the pixels just aren't very good over WiFi. 

I'd bet that same phone would work brilliantly with Stadia or GeForce Now, or indeed local streaming. There's definitely something quirky about xCloud on phones compared to other services, which I've found to be way more consistent.

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