Amazon Luna Review: A Taste of Gaming’s Future – TheStreet

Jason Cipriani/TheStreet

The initial buy-in cost of video game consoles and gaming PCs can dissuade casual gamers from making the jump from a smartphone to a dedicated setup. At least, that’s the case right now. And while I don’t expect that we’ll see top-gen gaming devices drop in price, there is another gaming setup that’s maturing — cloud gaming.

As its name implies, cloud gaming services like Amazon Luna, allow you to stream a video game, just like you would a movie or TV show on Netflix, straight to your phone, tablet, TV, or computer and game for as long as your device’s battery lasts (or you run out of data).

I’ve been testing Amazon Luna, the online retailer’s cloud gaming platform for several weeks. And I’ve come to the conclusion that I love the idea of cloud gaming, and in some cases cloud gaming itself, but there’s work to be done before cloud gaming becomes commonplace. 

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There Isn’t a Whole lot to the Initial Setup

Due to the fact that you don’t have to have any local hardware beyond a gaming controller to play Luna games, the setup process is nearly non-existent. If you already have your own Xbox or PlayStation controller, you can use that to play Luna games on a compatible device. Or you can purchase the Luna Controller for $69.99 and use it across all Luna-compatible devices with minimal effort.

Jason Cipriani/TheStreet

After unboxing the Luna Controller, I scanned a QR code to download the Luna Controller app. The app is what’s used to update the controller’s firmware as well as connect it to Wi-Fi. The ability to connect the controller directly to a Wi-Fi network is an important part of the overall Luna experience thanks to Cloud Direct.

With the Luna Controller connected to your home’s Wi-Fi network, Cloud Direct will automatically switch between whatever device you’re gaming on, without the need to pair the controller to each one. For example, if you start a Luna gaming session on Amazon’s Fire TV Stick 4K Max, and later you decide you want to sneak in a quick gaming session while you work on your Mac or Windows PC, you don’t have to do a thing to switch between either device.

The Luna Controller looks and feels like a typical gaming controller. I’d compare its layout and feel to an Xbox controller, or maybe …….



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