Amazon’s new cloud gaming service could be a game-changer. But what is Luna and how does it work exactly?
Amazon has officially entered the cloud gaming ecosystem with a service named Luna. Of course, Amazon couldn’t do things like everyone else. Instead, the Luna cloud gaming platform and its companion controller are unlike anything we’ve seen so far.
In this article, we explain everything you need to know about Amazon Luna, including what it is, how it works, and if it’s worth using.
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What is Amazon Luna?
Amazon Luna is Amazon’s cloud gaming platform. It promises to work on any screen with virtually no download or game update time. Users can also quickly and easily switch between devices without losing progress.
The service includes a growing number of “new and favorite” games from a number of developers.
The Luna Controller
Amazon has also released a companion controller called Luna Controller . Depending on the devices you play on, the Luna Controller may or may not be an integral part of using the Services, but it is not strictly required for most features.
The Luna controller is only required to play Luna games on mobile devices, but it is compatible with Luna on all hardware that supports the platform. You can use the controller itself as a sort of bridge between devices if you want, for example, to seamlessly switch between playing on a Fire TV and playing on a computer.
The controller also integrates with Amazon voice assistants, making it easy to start and navigate the app via voice commands. This is especially useful if you are using Luna without other Amazon voice-assisted hardware.
The USB-C enabled controller looks like an Xbox controller, features vibration motor-facilitated tactile feedback, and wireless connectivity via Bluetooth and Wi-Fi.
What Amazon Luna Offers
At its heart, Amazon Luna is another cloud gaming platform. In terms of operation and integration with other services, it becomes much more than that.
Use Amazon Luna To Access A Wide Variety Of Games
In a way, Luna is less like some of the cloud gaming platforms we have seen so far and more like some of the content streaming services we know. In fact, it works a lot like Hulu.
The games available on the platform are accessible through different “channels”. The domestic Luna + channel comes at a price and includes its own catalog of “new and favorite games”. However, other “premium” games are included on other channels available through the service.
Interestingly, the Luna + channel is not strictly required to use the platform. You can use Luna and play on the Ubisoft + channel without also having the Luna + channel. However, the Luna + channel has some additional benefits, including the ability to play games on two devices at the same time.
Go Online And Socialize With Amazon Luna
Amazon Luna is also integrated with the game streaming and networking site Twitch. Users can access their Twitch subscriptions and accounts through Luna, and vice versa.
Amazon Luna Integrates With Other Amazon Products And Services
In addition to being compatible with Amazon hardware like Fire Sticks and TVs, Luna is compatible with Amazon software, including Alexa. The Luna controller even has a dedicated button for activating voice commands that allow users to start the app and select games.
How To Access Amazon Luna
Luna, in one form or another, can be accessed via (and through) just about any connected device. If the device is a device connected to the Amazon voice assistant, you can use voice commands to start the service. It is also accessible through applications and web browsers.
As a cloud gaming service, Luna requires internet connectivity. While it works on data, users are recommended to access the service through an internet connection due to the data requirements involved in streaming games.
At the time of writing, Luna is only available in the United States, although Amazon says the company is working to expand the platform’s availability to other regions.
Amazon Luna Hardware Compatibility And System Requirements
Part of selling Amazon Luna is that it works on most platforms and devices. However, it still has minimum hardware and network connectivity requirements:
- Operating system: Windows 10 and Direct X 11 and newer support, or Mac with OSX 10.13 and newer.
- Web browser: Chrome 83 and newer web browser, or iOS 14 and newer Safari web browser.
- System requirements for Smart TV: Amazon Fire TV sticks 2nd generation and newer, Fire Stick 4K or Lite, Fire Cube, or Fire Edition TV.
- IT requirements: 2 GHz CPU (minimum), 5 GHz CPU (recommended), and a full mouse and keyboard (unless you are playing with a controller).
The service is not supported on any game console.
Regardless of what hardware Luna is installed on, users access the platform from the apps installed on those devices. Or, in the case of computers, through the browser. Users can also access the platform via voice commands through the Amazon voice assistant on compatible devices.
Amazon Luna Network Configuration
While offline play is a solid feature, it also hampers Luna’s philosophy of eliminating upload and download times as well as cross-platform play. As a result, games have to be played online and therefore a greater load is placed on connectivity speeds.
For older titles or lower quality viewing, 10 Mbps is the lowest recommended connection speed. For best gaming experience, including games available in 4K, 35Mbps is required.
Luna Mobile Support And Operating System Required
The Android app for the controller gives Android 5.0 (Lollipop) as the minimum required. While Luna is also compatible with iOS devices, there is no direct app download due to Apple’s attitude towards cloud gaming apps.
Since games are accessed through the Luna controller rather than the device, the compatibility of mobile devices is huge.
Download: Luna Controller for Android
As mentioned above, Luna games can be streamed to mobile devices using data. However, according to Amazon, streaming games at 1080p can take up to 10GB / hour, so playing over Wi-Fi is highly recommended.
Amazon Luna Subscription & Pricing Packages
Amazon Luna is a subscription service but does not have price points like some subscription services. Instead, users pay for individual channels that each have their own content.
Luna + is currently offered at $ 5.99 / month and an additional channel, Ubisoft +, is also available in beta for $ 15 / month.
Users who already have an Ubisoft Connect subscription can access their games through Amazon Luna without paying the additional fees. Of all the titles we know are available on Luna, the most exciting so far have all been Ubisoft titles.
With so many other cloud gaming services, it seems likely that more channels and integrations will come to Luna as the platform grows.
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Do You Need Amazon Luna In Your Life?
Amazon has us in a pinch on this one. On the one hand, the entry-level price is very attractive. It is significantly lower than that of other cloud gaming platforms. Admittedly, the price of the Luna controller in addition to these subscriptions is a bit shocking.
Sadly, you can’t cruise around Luna Lake to see what captures await you like you can with other gaming platforms. While one day Luna could be what unites all of our games to all of our devices. , at the moment, the platform is still in development.