Playing PC games on your work laptop or mobile phone may not be a thing of the far-flung future. A group called Parsec recently released software aimed at hooking an outside device, such as a Raspberry Pi 3 or Chromebook, to the hardware of your at-home desktop or console. This means playing high-end games on a device not normally capable of playing them.
Those with no dedicated gaming desktop or console to serve as home-streaming hardware aren’t out of luck. Parsec has an offering of cloud gaming servers which one can rent by the hour. The caveat to using these cloud gaming servers is one needs a much more impressive internet connection than if one where to stream from an at-home device.
As an article on the subject from Techcrunch.com by Brian Heater (https://techcrunch.com/2017/12/19/is-the-time-finally-right-for-platform-agnostic-cloud-gaming/) points out, attempting to use hardware via cloud is not a new concept. Mr. Heater notes that in 2010 OnLive was a group that attempted the very same thing. As noted in the article, Parsec believes the difference between OnLive’s attempt and their own is in the timing. With customers getting more bandwidth and the general technological progression of the last few years, Parsec believes the time is ripe for their software.
Another outlier to Parsec that may give it a boost is a unique capability of their program. Through their software, Parsec can make local multiplayer games capable of online multiplayer. Technical jargon aside, Parsec can create an online multiplayer environment between connected devices on their software without forcing game developers to go through and completely rewrite their code.
Herein lies the hidden, and perhaps lasting, value of Parsec. A handful of indie games, such as Scrap Galaxy, have already partnered with Parsec to bring their multiplayer online. This, of course, spells wider use of Parsec outside of mere home-hardware streaming, which may be the edge they need to succeed where OnLive failed.