Antstream is a streaming service that aims to bring the best of retro gaming to you via the cloud. Around two thousand titles have already been licensed, including arcade classics from SNK, Data East, and Technos, as well retro computer mainstays from companies like Epyx and Gremlin Interactive. The multiplatform service is set to launch in the first quarter of 2019.
The launch version will include a selection of 400 games, and more of the officially licensed titles will be added over time. The starting lineup is set to include titles like Fatal Fury, Double Dragon, Joe & Mac, Ikari Warriors, Zool, and California Games. Accounts will work across platforms, so you’ll be able to sign in and get to your library across the planned Windows, Mac, Xbox One, and Android versions.
Pricing for the service hasn’t yet been revealed, but more details on what to expect are coming ahead of launch next year. Game delivery via streaming – rather than emulation running directly on your machine – will allow you to make cross-platform use of the service, but projects ranging from Google’s Project Stream to the next Xbox are still trying to work out the kinks inherent to remote access. Issues like input latency will only be more noticeable on games originally designed for CRTs.
But there’s time to work out the details, and any option to get people better access to classic games is a good thing. In a press release, SNK CEO Koichi Toyama says “The videogame industry had been suffering from the absence of a way for games to be played years after their original platform disappeared. We are working with Antstream to right this wrong and allow everyone to play and challenge their friends at some of our most iconic videogames.”
Antstream will also offer specially designed challenges and leaderboards to bring some modern features to your retro gaming, and you can find out more on the official site. Check out the best old games on PC for now – we’ve still got several months to wait before we’ll find out if Antstream is able to live up to its potential.