Last year, Electronic Arts announced that it was building a cloud-based service that would, among other things, let players stream EA games to other devices. So far, testers have been able to play the likes of Titanfall 2 and Unravel, but EA won't be exclusively sticking with Project Atlas. It's already announced games for Microsoft's xCloud, and it's expected to release some on Stadia.
"We definitely do not see it that [we're competitors]," EA CTO Ken Moss told GamesIndustry.biz. "That is really not our goal. We haven't announced exact next steps on what we're doing with ours. We are pushing it, but I view it as actually part of our strategy—bringing our games out to the cloud and taking the learnings back to our studios, giving us the information on how we need to evolve our core platforms like Frostbite and our services platform and AI. That's what we are doing. We're not at all interested in competing on platforms."
Moss also believes that the cloud and AI will have a transformative effect on gaming, as well as bringing in a large number of new players. "How cloud gaming evolves is uncertain right now, but it's going to bring in another billion players into the gaming world," he said. It's a big number and a bold claim, especially since, as he noted, cloud gaming is still very much up in the air.
As it dives into streaming and the cloud, EA will be looking to partner up with other companies a lot more, according to Moss, just as it's been working with Microsoft and xCloud now. The scale of its plans are different from Google or Microsoft, so you won't see EA opening up data centres or investing in that kind of physical infrastructure, which is why it's cozying up to other companies.
EA and pals might be getting very excited about streaming, but it's yet to really prove itself. The Stadia's disappointing launch makes the future all these companies are banking on seem very far away.