Highscore.com: An Exclusive Interview With CEO Ian Bateman

Last updated on 29. April 2024

We’re excited to share an exclusive interview with Ian Bateman, CEO of Highscore, an upcoming cloud gaming platform. Highscore is making waves with its bold promise to deliver over 100,000 games to virtually any device you own.

From device compatibility to subscription options, Ian gave us the inside scoop on what sets Highscore apart in the competitive cloud gaming landscape.

Highscore CEO Ian Bateman and Team

First of all – what is Highscore?

Ian: Highscore.com is the world’s most comprehensive cloud gaming platform. Highscore allows you to stream, at high framerate and resolution, over 100,000 games to almost any device you own.

Highscore’s long-term goal is to allow you to play any PC game, on any device.

Regarding device compatibility, which platforms will support Highscore, and are there specific apps for various operating systems?

Ian: Users will be able to use Highscore with a vast majority of device types. This includes native apps for Windows, MacOS, and Linux, mobile apps for Android and iOS, a web-accessible interface that works in most modern browsers (Chrome, Edge, Firefox, Safari, etc.), support for Chromebooks, and apps for Smart TVs (Android TV / Tizen TV).

Highscore Devices

What about input methods? Can gamers use their favorite console controllers with Highscore?

Ian: Highscore will support mouse & keyboard (Bluetooth, USB, built-in), as well as most Bluetooth + wired controllers (including Xbox, PlayStation, 8BitDo, and Switch Pro Controllers).

Could you explain the different subscription tiers available with Highscore and the unique benefits each offers?

Ian: Highscore has three tiers of service: Free, Premium, and Pro.

On the Free tier, you can play for up to an hour per session, with 720p + 60 FPS. Depending on demand, you might have to wait a bit for access to a rig.

Premium subscribers have much lower wait times, can play for up to 6 hours in a single session, and can stream at up to 1080p + 60 FPS.

Pro subscribers have very low / no wait times, can play for up to 8 hours in a single session, and can stream at up to 4k + 120 FPS (240 FPS for select games).

Highscore Plans & Pricing

Regarding the hardware that powers Highscore, are there differences in hardware allocation across the subscription models?

Ian: Highscore uses a mix of hardware (GPUs, CPUs, etc.) from a variety of different vendors. Our systems do some pretty sophisticated resource allocation + dynamic optimization on a per-game basis.

That said, in general (and it really does depend on what game + device you’re playing on), subscribers to the Pro tier will be playing on higher-end hardware than those on the Premium tier, and those on the Premium tier will be playing on higher-end hardware than those on the Free tier.

Highscore Hardware Specifications

As for game platform support, which digital stores will Highscore initially integrate with, and are there plans to include others in the future?

Ian: Initially, we’re only focused on offering Steam support. We want to stay focused on this until we’re certain that we can provide a good, stable experience for all our users. Once we’re confident we have Steam nailed down, Epic and GoG are the next steps on our roadmap.

Long-term, our goal is to allow users to stream any PC game on Highscore.

Highscore Steam Game Selection

Will Highscore support game mods and third-party tools?

Ian: We’re still exploring the best way to approach this, but yes, our goal is to enable mod support for games on Highscore. We think we have some really interesting ideas for how to tackle this, but don’t want to say too much until we’re closer to releasing this feature!

Can you describe how the Snapshot feature will function for users and developers?

Ian: In practice, snapshots are mostly something we use internally (and expose to platform developers). It’s our way of managing virtual machines, base game installations, modded installations, save-states, etc. on behalf of users.

Users don’t need to worry about snapshots or snapshot management at all (unless they want to / are interested in developing on the platform).

How does the Suspend & Resume feature enhance the gaming experience on Highscore?

Ian: The ‘Suspend & Resume’ feature is just like the power button on top of your Steam Deck or Switch — you can detach from a session, ‘freezing’ it in place until you return.

‘Suspend & Resume’ works for pretty much everything on Highscore, even if games don’t directly support it (though for games with multiplayer, we can’t make any promises about getting booted, of course).

Highscore Suspend Resume Game

Could you tell us more about the virtual-couch feature and how it brings players together?

Ian: Highscore’s virtual couch feature is a fun way for friends to play what would typically be split-screen or local-only multiplayer games together over the internet.

Basically, you’ll just grab a link to your current session, send it to a friend, then you can play together instantly via the web (or one of our native apps).

Your friend doesn’t even need to be a Highscore subscriber!

Highscore Virtual Couch Coop

Will it be possible for users to share text content between their PCs and Highscore servers?

Yes, users will have to give appropriate permission (or use the requisite shortcut) depending on the client, but clipboard synchronization will certainly be supported!

Looking forward, how do you see cloud gaming shaping the future of the industry, and what role will Highscore play in that evolution?

The way I think about it is this: 10 years ago, everyone owned a DVD player. Today, no-one does. Today, everyone owns a game console or gaming PC. In 10 years, no-one will.

I think cloud gaming is inevitable — for so, so many reasons (increasing game storage requirements, performance demands, battery life, developer needs, etc.), it’s just better than local-first gaming. The idea of just being able to pop open a quick tab of whatever game I’m into for a few minutes during the work day is just very enticing.

That’s not to say I think consoles are going away. Lots of folks still own record players today — I just think that consoles + gaming PCs will eventually become enthusiast-only devices. I still have the Gameboy I got when I was seven, but I only play it rarely, and I think many people are the same way.

When I think about the problem cloud gaming solves: wanting to play X game on Y device, wherever I am — well, no one has really solved that yet. We’re working to make Highscore the default solution to this problem.

Highscore Team

Finally, can you share any details on the launch timeline for Highscore’s alpha version and your plans for regional data centers?

We’re aiming to get the first alpha version into players’ hands in just the next handful of months, and we’re working as quickly as possible to get the service out the door.

The service will be available only in California during the alpha, but we’re shooting for nationwide roll-out (USA) before the end of the year. Long-term, we’re aiming for Highscore to be available everywhere players love to game.

Join the waiting list

Thanks to Ian for sharing these insights with us! With some really innovative ideas, Highscore might become a real competitor to existing services like GeForce Now. We’re eagerly anticipating what’s next!

Get early access to Highscore by joining the waitlist at waitlist.highscore.com. You can move up in line and get rewards by inviting friends. The first 500 people get special access. Share your link, invite more friends, and jump ahead in the future of gaming with Highscore.

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