OnLive video game streaming service acquired by Sony and shut down

OnLive the first major company that attempted to deliver #live, playable #streams of popular #games is now shutting down the end of April. After launching approximately six years ago, the business model ended up unsuccessfully gaining users and generate revenue.

OnLive attempted to attract users with a pay-per-game model, $15-per-month subscription model, giving gamers access to streaming versions of games they already owned to play on devices like tablets and lower-end laptops. While on the hardware side, OnLive attempted a $100 mini-console in 2010. The hardware never caught on due to video quality issues as well as latency problems.

A FAQ about what the closure and sale to Sony gives OnLive users the bad news. OnLive used to offer PlayPass games, which were streaming versions of full games, like Splinter Cell: Conviction. Any such game purchased in the past “will no longer be available on OnLive after April 30, 2015.” Meaning the games that were locked to OnLive’s platform, cannot be downloaded and played like normal digital games, but will disappear from owners’ libraries in a few weeks’ time.

As for any game saves and achievements, these will be deleted on May 1. The exception are games supporting CloudLift, which was the service OnLive offered last year, a subscription fee to play streaming versions of certain Steam games you bought. Any saves or achievements played through CloudLift will continue to be available on Steam.

Some people made use of OnLive as a way of playing PC-only games on Linux and Mac. While not official installer for Linux was available, users would run OnLive using WINE with PlayOnLinux, but now owners will have no way to access those games without resorting to dual booting. Those hoping of getting their money back will be out of luck, as OnLive says, “Unfortunately no refunds are available for Steam games purchased via OnLive,” unless you happened to purchase it on or after February 1, 2015. If so, you can email [email protected] and request a refund using the subject “Hardware Refund.”

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