You know what is great? The fact that this week, a developer known as Twisted is releasing a Remote Play app for the PC which will allow gamers to play the latest PlayStation 4 games from the comfort of their PC. It’s going to be a great bit of kit, one that I’m sure Sony will quickly challenge, but it makes me wonder where the console giant is with this?
When the PS4 launched, the Remote Play feature was talked about, but never really boasted about in the same way that Microsoft have taken to Xbox One to PC streaming. It’s a great shame really, I’ve had the opportunity to use Remote Play on my Sony mobile since March, but it is only with the coming emergence of a PC app that I actually checked it out.
My experience was fun as I played Assassin’s Creed: Syndicate on a 5.2″ screen with my Xperia Z2. The connection wasn’t 100% stable, but nothing that would have stopped me from playing. The only trouble was that the screen was tiny, instantly putting me off playing anything like Destiny. I would have loved to try Remote Play on something a bit bigger, say my Nexus 7, but sadly there isn’t a Sony supported Remote Play available for it. To be honest, I’d rather not risk bricking my tablet by playing around too much with some of the independent versions of Remote Play.
I know Sony has a mobile and tablet hardware business to try and support, and keeping Remote Play exclusive to these devices is admirable, but surely it is limiting people’s options. If someone has a Windows 10 device, (don’t laugh at that comment, the Surface Pro series looks great) and a PC and are looking at the ability to play away from their console, the Windows streaming might seal the deal. In my eyes, it just makes sense for Sony to encourage people to play PS4 games wherever, and whenever, they can. Even if expanding their reach on mobile isn’t going to happen, there really should be an officially supported Windows app by now. Would I use it often? I’m not sure, but I would think about it.
If I still had my Vita of course, I would be able to use Remote Play on there, but sadly that has long been passed onto a friend. While the Vita is a great machine, and with plenty of indie support, people aren’t going to splash out on one just to remote play. There is PS TV of course, but that feels like something Sony developed, and just left on the side, sort of expecting people to go wild for it. It’s great in theory, but but is again somewhat lacking when people might want to play in a room where they may not have a TV.
I hope Sony see the potential to give gamers a good news story by opening up Remote Play to non-Sony handhelds and to the PC. In the meantime, I might find myself checking out Twiste’s app when it releases this week.