Paperspace has had a presence in the Cloud Gaming market for a while now. They were one of the first companies to see the potential in both Cloud Gaming and Enterprise applications. Now that there are more Cloud Gaming services available, is Paperspace still a good choice in 2019?
Filling a Niche
There are several ways that a Cloud Gaming service can be successful. Some try to be the cheapest, others try to be the easiest. Paperspace wants to be the most flexible.
They offer both hourly and monthly pricing for their servers (although it’s worth mentioning that you likely won’t be willing to pay their monthly price). Out of the two options, their hourly pricing is very affordable and can be attractive to a certain type of Cloud Gamer.
Paperspace’s greatest strength is that they give you a blank canvas to work with. You can install almost any software that you want on your server. And you can use almost any streaming software that you want. They offer the widest compatibility compared to any other Cloud Gaming service. You can even stream VR from the server if you’re willing to do a little tweaking. Paperspace is what you make it.
Two types of Gaming Customers
Paperspace is a good choice for two types of people. The first type is the person that wants to pay hourly for their Cloud Server. Paperspace is one of the last remaining Cloud Gaming services that can be used on an hourly basis. And they’ve become a go-to for gamers that don’t want the burden of a monthly subscription.
The second type of person is the tinkerer. This type of person enjoys setting things up a certain way and wants the flexibility to try different approaches. Paperspace has fewer restrictions when compared to other services. There are certain things that you shouldn’t mess with, but there are many things that you can customize. Paperspace allows you to assign a Public IP to your server and open up firewall ports. You can also setup a range of virtual audio cards and microphones.
While they’re great for tinkerers, they may not be the right choice for other types of gamers. If you’re a heavy user that plays 5-7 hours each day, then Paperspace may be too expensive. They also aren’t a great option for someone that’s looking for a plug & play experience. Paperspace requires you to install your own games and streaming software. Deploying your Paperspace instance is fairly simple, but there’s a lot of setup that is required after the server is live.
Streaming Software Compatibility
Paperspace currently works well with Parsec, Moonlight, and Rainway. It’s also entirely possible that they can be used with other streaming applications. We even were able to stream SteamVR content through a software called ALVR. Recently gamers reported that it works well with the Virtual Desktop streamer on Oculus Go.
The main point of emphasis here is that if you’re a Cloud Gamer, then Paperspace will likely meet your needs. Parsec is a great option for those that are interested in ultra low latency and high video quality. You can use Parsec to stream to another computer or even to a Raspberry Pi. Moonlight taps into Nvidia’s Gamestream technology to stream to many gadgets, including iOS devices. Rainway let’s you play games in your browser, and they plan to enable gaming console streaming in the future.
Your performance is largely based on the streaming software that you choose to use. With that said, Paperspace is capable of achieving the highest quality level that each software is capable of. For some softwares (like Parsec), this means an almost flawless 1080p streaming experience.
Paperspace’s streaming experience was so good that we used them along with Parsec for most of our game streaming review videos in 2018. They should be an excellent option as long as you live in a supported region and have the proper network and internet connection.
Supported Regions and Pricing
Paperspace currently has servers located in California, New York, and Amsterdam. If you live near one of these regions, then you will likely have a good experience with Paperspace. However it is worth mentioning that Paperspace doesn’t have a strong international presence. Outside of the United States, only those located in Europe can currently take advantage of what they offer.
We mentioned earlier that Paperspace is the most affordable when used on an hourly basis. When used hourly, they offer very competitive pricing (when compared to other hourly options like Microsoft Azure or Google Cloud). At Flickstiq we typically use one of their P5000 servers. This setup costs us 0.78 per hour plus a monthly fee for storage (which is currently $5 for 50 GB).
Paperspace is extremely affordable for those that plan to use them for 30 hours or less each month. Once you get above 30 hours their pricing becomes similar to what you’d pay for a monthly subscription through other services. Shadow for example charges $34 for unlimited Cloud Gaming on a monthly basis.
Paperspace is an interesting option in the current landscape of Cloud Gaming services. We would definitely label them as a niche service. They are going to be the most popular among hourly cloud gamers and those that are looking for the highest level of control and flexibility. If you are one of these types of people, then you’ll have a really good time with Paperspace. It has a lot to offer to the right person.
If you’re interested in trying Paperspace for yourself, you can get $10 of free credit to setup your own Paperspace server (new accounts only). If you’d like to see Paperspace in action, take a look at the video below:
Also published on Medium.
Josh is a long-time Gamer and Technology Guru. He is known for his writing and troubleshooting skills. Josh can solve just about any problem, and is especially good at getting to the bottom of technology challenges. He has a background in Networking and holds a Bachelor of Science in Information Technology degree. When he’s not gaming, Josh can be found blogging, testing new tech, and interacting with Flickstiq’s social media following. He lives in Ohio with his wife and children.