Amazon fired a salvo into the big-budget gaming world on Wednesday (May 20), with Crucible, in a move seen as ramping up the tech giant’s ambitions in the sector dominated by Microsoft, Activision Blizzard and Electronic Arts (EA). The free-to-play, third-person shooter game is Amazon’s answer to rival titles like Fortnite, PUBG, Overwatch and League of Legends.
The game, which can be played on a personal computer or laptop, allows gamers to battle opponents and imaginary creatures on an alien planet. As of now, most of the reviews suggest that while the gaming experience has been fine, there is still lots of room for improvement in the gameplay.
The high-end game’s basic version is available for free of cost on gaming platform Steam while it is selling the premium versions for up to INR 1,099. Amazon has already announced that it is also coming up with another game named ‘New World’ by August.
A game based on the popular movie series ‘Lord Of The Rings’ is also on the cards. Vice president of Amazon Games Mike Frazzini said that there’s tremendous room for invention in games. “We’re just getting started.”
Besides selling a premium version of Crucible, Amazon is also earning through in-app purchases by selling digital merchandise and seasonal battle passes. Meanwhile, it is speculated that Amazon will launch the New World in two versions — standard and deluxe — which will be priced at $40 and $50 respectively.
Amazon’s Bet On Gaming
Amazon, which is the largest ecommerce company in the world, had made its entry into gaming in 2012 under its premium subscription plan — Amazon Prime. Recently, the company provided access to mobile games to Indian Amazon Prime subscribers.
“We recognise the need for in-game content by mobile gamers to enhance their playing experience and are delighted to provide access to this content free to Prime members. We will continue to add new in-game content for other popular games, with frequent content refreshes,” said Akshay Sahi, director and head of Prime, Amazon India.
Meanwhile, the company is also providing its web service to other major gaming companies. Amazon, in 2014, also bought game streaming platform Twitch to launch Twitch Prime in 2016.
In the high-end gaming segment, Amazon is also set to compete against tech giant Google which has recently launched game streaming platform Stadia. Launched last year, Stadia allows gamers to play high-end games from any compatible device including smartphones. Moreover, gamers don’t have to download the game on the device as it is run on a cloud-based server.
Recently, Facebook was said to be making its entry into the game streaming segment with the launch of Facebook Gaming for a global audience. The US-based social media platform is also looking to speed up other gaming projects as well, including a new tournament feature.