Microsoft xCloud preview adds 50 games and shoots for a 2020 launch

Something to look forward to: Microsoft is upping the ante in the cloud-gaming race with the launch of Stadia just days away. The company is expanding its Project xCloud service with 50 games, more markets, and more invitations to player testers, which is currently in closed beta. It also plans to connect to additional devices and add third-party controller support.

Microsoft announced on Thursday that it is adding more than 50 new games to its Project xCloud streaming service in a bid to attract more players away from Stadia. Madden NFL 20, Devil May Cry 5, and Tekken 7 are new titles. When the platform goes live, players can also stream three generations of games they own and titles through their subscription to Xbox GamePass.

A limited preview of Microsoft’s game-streaming platform launched in mid-October with four games to try out for users — specifically Halo 5: Guardians, Gears 5, Killer Instinct, and Sea of Thieves.

Besides expanding the preview library, Microsoft said it would send more invitations into the beta. It is still limited to users in the U.S., UK, and South Korea, but the company plans to offer the preview early next year to those in Canada, India, Japan, and Western Europe.

Gamers can register for the preview on the xCloud website, but there is no guarantee that they will be selected to try the service with a limited number of invitations. That said, sometime in 2020 Microsoft plans to go live with the platform. So don’t have to wait long for those who don’t get in.

xCloud is currently only available for Android phones and tablets over WiFi or 5 G, but Windows PCs and other devices will be expanding next year. For now, users need to use an Xbox controller to play on xCloud, but Sony’s DualShock 4 support and Razer controllers are in the works.

Microsoft appears committed to grab as much of the game streaming pie as possible, which is good because it means that the competition is going to be fierce. Competitiveness means better service for the gamer almost always at lower prices.

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