The court case between Apple and Epic Games has given video game fans an inside look at a lot of unannounced plans for the industry. In an interesting email obtained by The Verge, Epic Games co-founder Mark Rein discussed Walmart's apparent plans to launch a video game streaming service with the codename "Project Storm." The service would have allowed users to stream to their phones and play using an Xbox controller attached via clip. Apparently, Walmart showcased the technology to Rein in an attempt to get Fortnite available on the service. In the email, Rein sounds quite enthusiastic about the service, and Walmart's overall plans.
"I played Walmart’s demo on an Android phone (with an Xbox controller) and the experience felt like playing on PS4 and superior to playing on Android or iOS," Rein writes in the email. The email also included concept images, which can be seen at The Verge's website right here.
Apparently, Walmart was also planning to sell the controller attachment for a very low amount, "something like $2," according to Rein. Players would have had the option of streaming games, as well as downloading and playing them locally. In that way, the service sounds somewhat similar to Xbox Cloud Gaming. Walmart's service would have used its LiquidSky service. Project Sky would have run through Windows, and supported multiple PC game launchers, notably the Epic Games Store, Steam, and more.
A beta was apparently planned for July 2019, but it's unclear why that never happened. There were rumors about the project, but Walmart never announced anything in an official capacity. It will be interesting to see whether or not Walmart still has plans to launch Project Sky, or if this is just something that eventually fell through the cracks. The Verge reached out to sources familiar with the company's plans, and Project Sky was apparently delayed as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.
A lot of different companies have shown an interest in game streaming, and some have found more success than others. Walmart could still enter the ring, following the efforts of Microsoft, Google, and Amazon. For now, gamers will just have to see what the future holds!
Would you be interested in a game streaming service from Walmart? Does cloud gaming hold any appeal for you? Let us know in the comments or share your thoughts directly on Twitter at @Marcdachamp to talk all things gaming!