Gaming

Amazon Luna officially launches in the US with free games for Prime members and more – TechCrunch

Amazon Luna officially launches in the US with free games for Prime members and more – TechCrunch

Amazon’s cloud-based game streaming service Amazon Luna has officially launched for everyone in the US, the company announcement Tuesday. Amazon first unveiled Luna in September 2020. Since then, the service has only been available to a limited number of people through Luna’s invite-only early access program.

In addition to the national launch, Amazon also announced three new channels on Luna. For context, channels are what Luna calls game bundles that users can subscribe to each month. The first of three new channels is the Main game channel, which gives Prime members access to a rotating selection of games for free on Luna each month. In March, the selection includes Devil May Cry 5, Observer, System Redux, PHOGS! and more. Amazon also notes that Immortals Fenyx Rising will be available to play for free from March 8-14.

The second new channel is the Retro chain, which features classic games from publishers like Capcom and SNK. Amazon says the channel is meant to give users a way to “relive the glory days of arcade gaming” with titles like Street Fight II, Hyper Fighting, Metal Slug 3 and others. The third new channel is the Jackbox Gaming Channel, which includes all eight Party Packs from Jackbox Games. The channel offers popular games including Quiplash, Drawful, Trivia Murder Party and more. Retro Channel and Jackbox Games Channel cost $4.99 per month.

Amazon also announced that players can now stream Luna gameplay on Twitch with the latest Luna update on PC, Mac, or Fire TV. To make this possible, the company has rolled out a new broadcast button that allows players to stream the game live with a camera feed overlaid on the screen. With Fire TV, gamers can use a QR code to connect their phone as a webcam and mic.

Additionally, users can now try out Luna on Fire TV using just an iPhone or Android phone as a controller through the Luna Controller app. Amazon says the on-screen controller is an option for new or casual controller-less gamers who want to experience side-scrolling, turn-based RPGs, trivia titles and more.

Unlike other cloud services, Luna works by allowing users to subscribe to channels on a monthly basis. Currently, the main Luna+ channel costs $5.99 per month and the family channel costs $2.99 ​​per month.

The Luna+ channel offers a growing library that includes over 100 titles, while the Family Channel offers a curated collection of over 35 games suitable for gamers of all ages. Starting April 1, the Luna+ Channel will cost $9.99 per month and the Family Channel will cost $5.99 per month. Amazon also offers a Ubisoft+ channel for $17.99.

It’s been more than a year since Amazon first launched Luna, which faces competition from other services including Microsoft’s Game Pass Ultimate and Nvidia’s GeForce Now. Amazon’s decision to add a rotating selection of free monthly games for Prime customers appears to be a way to entice more people to try Luna at no additional cost.

Luna’s domestic expansion comes as Amazon recently raised the price of Prime in the US. The monthly fee went from $12.99 to $14.99 and the annual membership went from $119 to $139.