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First Gaikai demo shows WoW and EVE played via browser

James Egan

Gaikai is a new game streaming service that's currently in development, which was first announced at GDC 2009 (and later was apparently previewed by game publishers at E3 2009.) We've since mentioned Gaikai a few times at Massively, and how the service could bring MMOs (and other games) to devices like netbooks that don't have adequate graphics capabilities to run these titles. Gaikai will use "Streaming Worlds" technology to do all the graphics crunching on remote servers and then stream games to your computer via a web browser. In effect, you're playing the game as a video stream. No client install required, no patching needed.

Given the reactions we've seen from gamers in our own comments and elsewhere on the web, skepticism abounds. Perhaps seeing is believing though, as Gaikai's David Perry has put out a video demo of the service today, explaining Gaikai to viewers as he plays several games, namely World of Warcraft and EVE Online. No doubt there will still be skepticism, but it's good to get a first look at the service. Perry makes a few details about the demo and the service itself clear on his blog: the data travel distance in the demo is 800 miles; this is a (non-fiber) home cable connection; it works over wi-fi and with netbooks lacking 3D graphics cards; any clicking sounds heard are only from Perry's wireless headset mic.

We've got a video embed of the Gaikai technology demo for you below, where you can see World of Warcraft and EVE Online played via a browser:

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