Before LANs and the internet and creepy unsolicited photos of KillaHitmanSnipez69’s junk, kids used to hang out and play video games on the same screen. But local multiplayer modes like this have become increasingly obsolete as everybody dials into the tubez and make implausible claims about each others’ moms instead. Now, Steam is reinventing nostalgia with a new feature that supports local multiplayer over the internet. Which isn’t as paradoxical as it seems.
With Remote Play Together, up to four players can team up using a single copy of a game, streamed over an internet connection, according to Ars Technica. Obviously, however, this only works with games that already include a local multiplayer mode.
To clarify: it really is only for shared-screen or split-screen games. The tech is streaming your screen to your friend and capturing their input and sending it back to the game, so you are both playing the same game, looking at the same thing.
According to a copy-pasted email on the Unity forum (since confirmed as legitimate by Valve), Remote Play Together renders at 60 frames per second at 1080p, and requires a high-speed internet connection between 10 to 30 Mbps to miminise latency. Games on Steam that support local multiplayer modes will be automatically added to the beta when it launches on 21 October.