Amazon Luna is joining Google Stadia – and, adjacently, Game Pass xCloud – in the game streaming arms race. Fundamentally, Amazon Luna is a cloud gaming service that lets you play games on streaming devices while avoiding installs or downloads. It works on a subscription basis but you get access to the full versions of available games. That's the gist of Luna, but as is always the case with a new service like this, there are a lot of little details and caveats, especially with Luna being unreleased at the time of writing. So, after speaking with Amazon and collating answers from a separate presentation, we've rounded up everything we know about Luna and the most important points to keep in mind.
What is the Amazon Luna release date?
This is an awkward question, because we don't actually know. Amazon is currently taking requests for a slot in Luna's early access run, but we don't know when early access will begin, nor do we know when the full version of Luna will be released. Amazon has been quite vague on this so far, but hopefully, we'll get a concrete timeline this year.
What are the Amazon Luna games?
Amazon Luna games are available through channels. By subscribing to a channel, you get access to its games. Luna will launch with two channels in early access: the Luna Plus variety channel, and the Ubisoft channel. When Luna's early access period begins, Amazon says both channels will have at least 50 games apiece. By the end of early access, the company expects Luna Plus to have over 100 games.
Here all of the games that have been listed for Luna, either directly or in marketing materials:
- Assassin's Creed Valhalla (at launch)
- Blazing Chrome
- Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night
- Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons
- Far Cry 6 (at launch)
- Ghost of a Tale
- Immortals Fenyx Rising (at launch)
- The Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel 3
- Lumines Remastered
- Metro Exodus
- Overcooked 2
- Panzer Dragoon: Remake
- Paper Beast
- A Plague Tale: Innocence
- Resident Evil 7
- Rez Infinite
- River City Girls
- The Sexy Brutale
- Shadow Tactics: Blades of the Shogun
- Shantae: Half-Genie Hero
- Sonic Mania
- Steamworld Dig 2
- Steamworld Quest: Hand of Gilgamech
- The Surge 2
- Tennis World Tour 2
- Two Point Hospital
- Watch Dogs Legion (at launch)
- Yoku's Island Express
- Yooka-Laylee and The Impossible Lair
- Ys VIII: Lacrimosa of DANA
Asked about potential Luna-exclusive games, Amazon's Marc Whitten explained that, "We're not focused on things like exclusives. We're focused on how to lower the barriers of access to make gaming accessible to everyone. I know the easy story to go write is a versus story, but that's not how we think of Luna. We think of Luna as, how can we be on a mission to make it easier for people to play more games, and for more people to be able to play games by opening up the number of devices they can play?"
Whitten also confirmed that games will be permanent additions during the early access period, but in the future, games may rotate out of Luna as well. Any changes to Luna's library will be communicated ahead of time, and Amazon's Oliver Messenger maintains that "We care a lot about cross-save and cross-play, we're big proponents of that. Ubisoft is a good example of this; we're working with them to make sure that that is persistent regardless of where you play."
It's also worth noting that Luna will not have its own achievement system at launch. However, Messenger says "Ubisoft and Uplay have their achievement system and they'll be supported. Our own one will be rolled out within early access. We're thinking about scenarios like this, and it's one of the things we're excited to learn more about in talking to customers. Also, I think that as awesome as achievements are, they're maybe an opportunity to innovate and do something slightly different than what's going on today where all platforms have the same achievement set, they're just sort of bridged. We'd love to do something a little more novel and exciting there."
What's the Amazon Luna price?
Like its games, the Amazon Luna price varies depending on which channels you subscribe to. Luna Plus is the base channel, and it will go for $5.99 per month in early access. The Ubisoft channel will be available at a separate, currently unknown price. There will also be a seven-day free trial for Luna Plus.
A standard subscription lets you stream in 1080p/60FPS on up to two devices at the same time, with support for Windows 10 PCs, Mac, iPhone and iPad, and Fire TV devices, with Android support still to come. Some games will also be available for 4K/60FPS streaming, but only for select titles, and not necessarily at launch.
Amazon Prime is not required to access Luna, nor will Prime subscribers receive any sort of benefit when Luna enters early access. However, Amazon's Gabi Knight confirmed that the company will be taking player feedback during early access "to figure out a Prime benefit that works for customers."
Early access prices are subject to change – "We will be very clear about any pricing changes as we approach general release," Knight says – but Amazon hasn't shared any specifics.
How does the Amazon Luna controller work?
Amazon has revived its old controller design to make a dedicated $49.99 Luna controller which connects directly to the cloud. Amazon claims that the Luna controller performs better than conventional Bluetooth devices, but Luna will also work with a PS4 or Xbox One controller, any general Bluetooth gamepad, or a mouse and keyboard setup on PC. Up to four controllers can be connected at once for local co-op for games like Overcooked 2.
Amazon Luna recommended internet speeds
For 1080p/60FPS Luna streaming, Amazon recommends a 10mbps connection at a minimum (ideally 5GHz, although 2.4GHz is supported), and 35mbps for 4K streaming. You'll also need an internet plan that can accommodate up to 10GB of data per hour (at 1080p).