Lines of code found in the latest Steam client beta are adding credence to a long-running rumour that Valve is working on its own cloud gaming service.
Data miner Pavel Djundik has found several references to a cloud gaming operation in the beta client's code, along with additional code that refers to timed trials.
"The timed trials and cloud gaming are related to each other, there's 'GetCloudGameTimeRemaining' method," Djundik suggests over Twitter. "We knew about NVIDIA before, but this beta adds more methods for Steam to interact with the NVIDIA cloud.
"For example, CloudGamingNVIDIAUpdateGameList".
Latest Steam client beta adds more support for Steam cloud gaming operations and timed trials. pic.twitter.com/EpdwXYVnCd— Pavel Djundik (@thexpaw) May 25, 2020
This is the first we've heard about an apparent Steam Cloud Gaming service since last year, when Steam's developer-only portal received a code update with references to the service. Valve has yet to offer any confirmation.
It wouldn't be completely out of left field for Steam to introduce its own cloud gaming effort. With both Google and Microsoft cracking entering into the field with their respective Stadia and xCloud platforms, it would seem like the next logical step for Valve.
Steam already has numerous cloud-based offerings, including Steam Link, Steam Link Anywhere, and Steam Remote Play, but is yet to introduce a way that doesn't require using your PC as a server to stream games.
VG247 reached out to Valve for comment, and a representative told us that for now, the Steam Cloud Play beta only supports Nvidia GeForce Now. Steam users in select regions who use the client can play supported games they own on Steam.
The full comment is below:
“At this time, the Steam Cloud Play Beta only supports NVIDIA GeForce NOW. Steam users in North America, Western Europe, and Asia Pacific can download the NVIDIA GeForce NOW client and play supported games they own on Steam. On Wednesday, we updated our documentation and sent email to a small group of developers with details on how to opt into the program.
"We are working with NVIDIA to make the experience as smooth as possible for players and developers. We are always testing additional ways for customers to play the games in their Steam Library. To that end, this is something of a pilot for cloud-based gaming via Steam. Although we have no further announcements at this moment, we are open to adding additional Steam Cloud partners over time.”