OnLive Founding Membership Woes

I got my OnLive invitation over the weekend. I had been waiting for it, but not for too long. The email started out like this:

“Congratulations! You have been selected from the wait-list for membership activation and immediate access to the OnLive Game Service.”

I figured this would be a standard test and that I would have something to post about tonight. It turns out I did end up with something to write about, but not in the way I anticipated. I read far enough to get to the registration link and moved on. I didn’t notice the little spec list further down.

Minimum Recommended Requirements:

  • PC: Windows 7 or Vista (32 or 64-bit) or XP (32-bit)
  • Mac: Mac OS X 10.6 or later
  • Processor: Dual-core CPU
  • Screen Resolution: 1280×720 (currently, all OnLive games are HDTV resolution)
  • Internet Connection: Wired (not wireless) 5Mbps connection located inside the contiguous United States
  • Gamepads: Wired Xbox 360-compatible gamepads

I signed in and saw the above image. So far so good. I jumped through all the hoops, signed the agreements, and got ready to install the software.

Things were still looking good, so I clicked install. This is where the trouble began. I got an error message saying I was using the wrong browser. When I think about playing video games, I am inclined to use a lightweight, fast browser. That browser tends to be Google Chrome. I can’t imagine why Chrome wouldn’t be supported, but sure enough, no dice.

I started Firefox, and the process resumes. I download a little file, opened the installer, and I was back in business. Or was I? A window popped up informing me that it was connecting to OnLive. It flashed briefly to upload the latest software, and then went back to the connecting message. It never connected.

Rather than happily exploring the site at this point, I got the following error.

My connection speed is not sufficient for good video quality? I was rather confused by this. I was testing it on a T3 internet connection. T3 isn’t fast enough? I thought that perhaps there was a lag in my connection. I ran a speed test. Sure enough, I was better than okay there.

I tried again and failed. I decided to wait until tonight and try it on my cable modem. That didn’t work either, but at least for a different reason.

I average 15Mbps download speeds at home and use a Wireless N router, so I am not sure why Wi-Fi would be disallowed. This problem isn’t insurmountable, but I have no intention of stringing a cable from my modem to my couch. There is a reason I have Wi-Fi. As I was getting ready to write this post I noticed the recommended settings included above. I used Windows 7 and Vista in my tests, so I passed that hurdle at least. In the case of my morning test though, I still don’t know what went wrong. There was a note about Wi-Fi for tonight’s test. That being said, these are “recommendations”, not requirements, or so they said.

I was really looking forward to posting about how great this new service is. I can’t do that. Instead I am waiting for a response from an e-mail I sent them this afternoon. If I ever get it to work, I’ll let you know. Until then, I guess I’ll just wait and see.

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