Game Development in the Cloud

Friday, December 18, 2020

There comes a point in life where you just have to move on. The question is, are we at that point now?

Cloud gaming and cloud infrastructure has hugely improved in recent years. So much so that a world of possibilities has opened up to a wider audience, both in terms of playing games and game development. Much of the headlines recently have been concentrating on the (currently) slow but almost inevitable feeling that cloud gaming is the next big turning point for the industry. So much so that less conversations have been around game development in the cloud. This is a bit of a shame because the potential that the cloud holds for developers is huge.

This article will go into more detail about game development in the cloud. It will explain what it is, how people can go do it, and what some of the benefits of approaching development in this way are.

So if you’d like to learn more about cloud game development, read on below to find out more.

What is game development?

Game development is a broad term that covers a network of skills and technologies that all come together to create video games. Game development is all stages of creating a game, beginning with planning, designing, technical implementation, and the release of a game.

So there are lots of people whose jobs are part of the game building process that can call themselves game developers. The roles these people do could also be vastly different, including a designer, sound engineer, programmer, script writer, and QA tester. 

A large amount of data and information gets used and processed during the development of a game. Depending on the size and scale of the build there are multiple options available to the development team. More recently, cloud development has become more and more popular.

Why choose the cloud to develop games in?

As the cloud and the infrastructure that surrounds it has become more sophisticated, there are multiple areas that the cloud can start to outperform traditional, non-cloud servers. The sheer amount of data that modern games require needs a framework around them that is agile and reactive to the changing loads that they can be placed under. In the past teams, on the whole, have been able to keep games online and afloat thanks to hard work and 24/7 monitoring, the cloud is able to assist much more rapidly. 

What cloud companies can you develop games with?

So if you’re actually interested in developing a game in a cloud, you should know that it doesn’t matter what scale your game is. You could be a small indie developer, or part of a huge studio creating cutting edge content, the cloud has something to offer you. What’s important is to check carefully what each business offers in their packages and find the one best suited to your needs. Below are two cloud providers to begin your search with.

AWS Game Tech

It is very difficult to talk about cloud technology and not mention AWS. Amazon Web Services is the biggest cloud provider in the market. In fact, they claim to have 90% of the world’s biggest public gaming companies using their technology. AWS has been operating for over 13 years and offers more than 175 services. This wider infrastructure is one of the strongest available for people wanting to build games. Some services they offer include database management, gameplay analytics, compute power, and machine learning.

Google Cloud

Google Cloud is another megalith of the cloud computing world. Their service is very flexible and can be tailored to developers of all sizes. There are a number of useful files, documents, and walkthroughs to help you work on the platform which can be extremely handy. Some of the products they offer allows for a complete hands off approach of your game’s infrastructure, if that’s what you want. If this is the case, look at Firebase and Compute Engine in their products list.

The above two companies are not the only ones available to develop your game on the cloud with. However, they are two of the most well known and reliable. It’s always a good idea to understand what you could get from them and then see how some of the other companies compare.

Game development in the cloud makes sense on a lot of levels, particularly as we move further into the future and the technology continues to get stronger. While there may still be a place for some time with more traditional gaming methods, the agility and scalability that the cloud provides can be a huge asset to game developers.