Random: I played Sea of Thieves via Xbox Cloud Gaming on a pirate ship IRL
There once was a ship that put to sea...
I recently went on vacation to the Baltic Sea in North Germany. You'd think while on vacation I'd do vacation-y things, like relax, soak in some rays, avoid technology, and so on. Alas, that was not the case.
I recently picked up a Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 3, and used this unique opportunity in the land of "outside" to do some real-world testing. At one point during the trip, I found myself on a sailboat, awash with fresh ocean air, grog in hand. While photographing the stunning views and soaking in the atmosphere, I found my mind wandering — to gaming. There's something about the real world that is just a tad disheartening, and Microsoft knows it, which is why they're working on technology to let me escape the real world at every possible opportunity. Thanks, Xbox Cloud Gaming!
While I figured Xbox Game Pass cloud wouldn't work at sea, the range of the local 5G masts around the coast defied my expectations. Admittedly, I wasn't exactly in the open ocean, but even a few kilometres out I was able to reliably fumble around on Sea of Thieves and Pillars of Eternity using the touch controls. I managed to smash some dragons in Pillars before I decided it was probably best to stop gaming and actually spend some time vacationing like an adult, uploading my save files back to the cloud to pick up and continue later.
Playing cloud games at sea might be a niche scenario, but it was a fun reminder of how far Xbox can reach beyond its typical install base with this technology. As connectivity improves across the globe, Microsoft has an opportunity to tap into an entire generation of gamers who grew up playing on their phones and tablets, rather than their TVs. And hey, maybe it'll also help save people from a lame family camping trip or two here and there.
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Jez Corden a Managing Editor at Windows Central, focusing primarily on all things Xbox and gaming. Jez is known for breaking exclusive news and analysis as relates to the Microsoft ecosystem while being powered by caffeine. Follow on Twitter @JezCorden and listen to his Xbox Two podcast, all about, you guessed it, Xbox!