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Cloud Legal Project

Cloud Gaming



A Nintendo Switch displaying the online game storeThis research is led by Mitchell Longan, Dave Michels, and Christopher Millard in collaboration with Gaetano Dimita. Together, we set out to ‘demystify’ cloud-based videogaming and its legal implications.

We do this in two stages. First, we offer a descriptive analysis of the videogame sector, including relevant markets and value chains. We explain the basics of cloud computing technology, traditional videogame technology, and how the two converge in cloud-based videogame ecosystems. We also analyse market structures for both the cloud and video game industries as well as relevant value chains in order to understand how these markets will overlap.

Based on these analyses, we make predictions about how the cloud gaming market will be structured, including a breakdown of three separate models for cloud gaming services: the ‘layered’ model of Gaming-as-a-Service (‘GaaS’), the ‘integrated’ model of GaaS, and the ‘consumer infrastructure-as-a-service’ model. Finally, we use these three models to analyse how certain intellectual property rights, contractual rights, and regulatory issues will develop in this novel environment for videogame distribution and access.

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