Mobile game addicts soon won’t have to worry quite as much about their phone’s internal memory as Rovio, the company behind Angry Birds, has announced that its mobile game streaming arm, Hatch, is bringing its service to the UK.
First revealed to the world in late 2016, Hatch is a service that works a bit like Spotify or Netflix. Rather than downloading individual apps for every game you want to play, downloading Hatch will allow you to stream more than 100 games straight to your phone. Simply open the app, click the game you want to play and it’ll start up.
Since early 2017, Hatch has been in an invite-only beta in select countries in Europe, with a slow roll-out to scale with server capacity. Now the company has announced that it’s bringing an open beta to the Google Play store, and it’s available in the UK.
Hatch already has many popular developers and games on its service, including Ubisoft, Bandai Namco, and Ustwo games, the creators of widely acclaimed Monument Valley and Double Fine Productions. The latest publisher to sign on to the service is Square Enix Montreal, which will be bringing Hitman GO, Lara Croft GO, Deus Ex GO and Hitman Sniper to the service in 2018.
According to Hatch, the use of robust cloud-based architecture means games can be streamed straight to your phone with no latency worries. The amount of bandwidth used varies from game to game, but the service says it’s significantly less than HD video streaming.
You can see the official launch trailer for Hatch below:
While Netflix and Spotify are paid services, Hatch is free to use, and it promises fully-featured games with no in-app purchases. This does, of course, mean there will be ads, but a monthly subscription option which removes ads and brings exclusive features will be coming in the future.
One of the more interesting aspects of Hatch is that it brings online social elements into mobile gaming. Hatch users will be able to connect with friends and family through the app, and play games with them in real-time with voice chat.
Hatch users will also have a personal feed where they’ll be able stream and share clips from their gameplay, as well as see their friends’ clips from the games they’re playing. It’ll also be possible to share these videos to other social media feeds such as Facebook.
Making mobile gaming sociable
Hatch can be used while connected to mobile data or Wi-Fi, which a neat solution for anyone with limited internal phone memory but a robust data plan or ready access to Wi-Fi. Naturally the strongest connections will provide the best gameplay experience.
For those with limited data, relying on a stable Wi-Fi connection would be advisable. The fact that the app is free to download and use makes this limitation slightly less galling than if it was a paid service.
The Hatch beta is now available to download from the Google Play Store for Android users. Hatch has said that an iOS version of the service will be coming eventually, but it’s attempting to perfect the Android version before extending itself any further.