Amazon first announced its Luna game streaming service in 2020. It was an invite-only affair back then, but now the company has opened up the service to anyone in the continental United States and offers free games to Prime members.
What is Amazon Luna?
Luna is a cloud gaming service that costs $5.99 and works best with Amazon’s Luna Controller, which is currently on sale for $49 instead of $69. The controller syncs with a connected device like a smartphone, tablet, streaming device, smart TV, or computer. Amazon then streams premium games from the cloud to your device and lets you play them with minimal lag, even on decidedly ordinary internet speeds.
Amazon’s massive clusters of computers handle the calculations needed to run the game, then immediately stream it back to your device.
It’s similar to other services like Google’s seemingly ill-fated Stadia or Microsoft’s XCloud service in that it allows high-level gaming without access to a physical console or beastly gaming PC.
What do you get with Amazon Luna?
The $5.99 Luna+ price includes over 100 games that stream directly to your devices with the help of the Luna controller. If you’re already a Prime member or signing up, you’ll receive a small rotating collection of games for free as part of your membership. If you are willing to pay a little extra money, you can access other “channels”, which offer more games. For example, there’s a Jackbox Games channel, which includes access to the company’s nine popular party titles for $5 a month.
The Retro chain seems to be one of the best values. You get classic games like Street Fighter IIa whole collection of Contra games, lots of Castlevania games, and more vintage goodness for the same $5 a month.
If you really want to test the service’s performance limits, however, the $18 Ubisoft+ monthly subscription includes AAA titles from the Far cry, Assassin’s Creedand Watch dogs franchisees. It also includes a handful of other games that would never run on a cheap tablet or modest streaming device without the help of a cloud-based streaming service like Luna.
How to Buy Amazon Luna
Amazon says the current Luna+ subscription price of $5.99 is a “founder rate” that is expected to increase in the future, but you can lock it in now by signing up here in the early stages.
The Luna Controller, which ensures low latency between your device and the game (to combat lag) is currently $49, down from its regular price of $69. If you want to play on your TV instead of a tablet, PC, or smartphone, Amazon also sells the Luna Controller that comes bundled with a Fire TV Stick 4K for $105.