Google Stadia is about to get some serious competition. During today’s hardware event, Amazon announced Luna – a brand-new cloud gaming service that’s powered by the company’s very own AWS platform.
For the introductory price of $5.99 a month, Luna subscribers can enjoy a growing library of games such as Resident Evil 7, Control, and Panzer Dragoon on select devices (e.g., Fire TV, PC, and Mac) at up to 1080p/60 FPS (4K is “coming soon”). Users may stream on two devices at a time.
Coinciding with Luna’s launch is a controller built specifically for the service. According to Amazon, it connects to custom game servers to reduce roundtrip latency by 17 to 30 ms – a big improvement over local Bluetooth. No pairing is required since it “talks directly to the cloud.” It even supports Alexa, Amazon’s cloud-based voice service.
You can request early access for Luna on its landing page. “No waiting for lengthy downloads or updates — just play,” reads a blurb.
Original Press Release
Starting today, customers in the U.S. can request early access to Amazon Luna, a new cloud gaming service designed for instant play. With Luna and the incredible scale and capability of Amazon Web Services (AWS), it’s easy to stream high-quality, immersive games. Players can enjoy Luna games on their favorite devices without lengthy downloads or updates, expensive hardware or complicated configuration. They can even start playing on one screen and seamlessly pick up and continue on another. At launch, Luna will be available on Fire TV, PC, and Mac as well as on web apps for iPhone and iPad, with Android coming soon.
“We created Luna to make it easy to play great games on the devices customers already own and love,” said Marc Whitten, Vice President, Amazon Entertainment Devices and Services. “It’s Day One for Luna—we are excited to work with gamers, streamers, and publishers like Ubisoft and Remedy Entertainment to build a great gaming experience for everyone.”
Great Games, Anywhere You Want to Play
Players can subscribe to the Luna+ game channel, which offers a growing library of games to play on Fire TV, PC, and Mac, or through web apps on iOS, with Android coming soon. During early access, Luna+ will include action games like Resident Evil 7, Control, and Panzer Dragoon; adventure games like A Plague Tale: Innocence and The Surge 2; platformers like Yooka-Laylee and The Impossible Lair and Iconoclasts; and fan favorites like GRID, ABZU and Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons. Luna+ will be offered at an introductory price of $5.99/month during the early access period, with more titles to be added over time. Additionally, Luna+ subscribers can play on two devices simultaneously and get resolutions of 4K/60fps for select titles.
Amazon also announced a new gaming channel with leading global video game publisher Ubisoft, available directly through Luna. Players who subscribe to this channel will have access to their favorite Ubisoft titles in up to 4K resolution, mobile gameplay, and access to new titles when the channel launches like Assassins Creed Valhalla, Far Cry 6, and Immortals Fenyx Rising the same day they release. This is the first of multiple Luna game channels in development, where customers can play games from their favorite publishers and genres.
“We’re proud to be working alongside Amazon on Luna, utilizing the power of cloud gaming to provide our players with another way to access our games, wherever they are,” said Chris Early, SVP of Partnerships and Revenue, Ubisoft. “Ubisoft’s channel on Luna will allow players to experience our new releases along with many of our catalog games, while enjoying player-friendly features like Alexa and Twitch integrations.”
Play from Twitch
Gaming is more social than ever before and Twitch is where the world’s best streamers meet the world’s most engaged gaming community. Twitch is one of the most important ways that audiences discover great games and experiences, and we think cloud streaming can make that kind of discovery even easier. Inside the Luna experience, players will see Twitch streams for games in the service, and from Twitch, they’ll be able to instantly start playing Luna games.
Amazon Luna Controller Delivers Low Latency with Cloud Direct Technology
Customers can play Luna with a keyboard and mouse, a Bluetooth game controller, or the new Luna Controller with Cloud Direct technology. Luna Controller is Alexa-enabled and connects directly to the cloud to effortlessly control your game, featuring a multiple-antenna design that prioritizes un-interrupted wifi for lower latency gaming. In fact, our testing showed a reduction in roundtrip latency when playing Luna Controller with Cloud Direct vs. Luna Controller via Bluetooth, with reductions of between 17 to 30 milliseconds among PC, Fire TV, and Mac. Because the Luna Controller connects directly to cloud servers, players can easily switch between screens—such as Fire TV to mobile phone—without additional pairing or configuration changes. Luna Controller is available at an introductory price of $49.99 during the early access period.
Powered by AWS Game Servers
Luna is built on AWS and harnesses the power of the industry’s broadest and deepest cloud platform. What’s more, as new features and content are added for Luna customers, the backend tech that’s driving it all will also be frequently refreshed, ensuring a consistently improving experience whether they’re playing on their Fire TV, their phone, or anywhere else.
Customers in the U.S. can request an invitation today for early access to Luna. By choosing to participate, invited gamers will have the opportunity to contribute feedback that will inform future Luna features and development. Request an invitation to Luna today at http://amazon.com/Luna/.
At launch, Luna will be available on Fire TV, PC, and Mac as well as on web apps for iPhone and iPad, with Android coming soon.