The Twitch streaming network and Amazon’s Luna cloud gaming service are being brought closer together. There is now a “Play on Luna” option that will take you to the game’s Twitch website if it is accessible on the cloud gaming service (via 9to5Google).
Luna has a lot of limits that make it difficult to just jump in and start playing a game.
Twitch needs more Sonic Mania players. The Verge / Jay Peters / Screenshot
This button is only visible when you’re connected into Twitch and have linked an Amazon account to Twitch, and you’ve been accepted into the Luna early access programme. While using Chrome’s Incognito mode, I was unable to see it on the Sonic Mania or Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six Extraction Twitch pages. In addition, the button doesn’t appear on the stream itself, but rather on a game’s Twitch website. To my mind, the button would be much more useful if it could be used while I was viewing a stream of a game, so that I could immediately play the game streamed from the cloud.
A GAME MAY NOT WORK EVEN IF YOU KNOW WHERE THE START BUTTON IS.
Suppose you’re logged in to Twitch, linked to Amazon, accepted into the Luna early access programme, know where the “Play on Luna” button is, and you click it to play something on the cloud gaming service, Luna’s business model implies you still might not be able to just hop into the game. Each “channel” has its own subscription, unlike a service like Netflix where you may access all of the available material with a single monthly payment option like Hulu or PlayStation Vue. If you subscribe to the wrong Twitch channel, you won’t be able to play the game until you click the button. Because I’m not a member of any Luna channels, I haven’t been able to start playing any games yet. This Twitch / Luna integration was promised as part of the service’s debut in September 2020, as pointed out by 9to5Google, so it’s been in the works for quite some time now. That button on Twitch could be an indication from Amazon that they’re taking Luna more seriously, as well. However, I believe the button is difficult to locate and the implementation is more difficult than necessary. When it comes to cloud gaming, I agree with my colleague Sean Hollister that the “Play on Luna” button has too much friction to provide a fluid experience.