BlueStacks is a full-featured Android emulator that makes it easy to run Android apps and games on other operating systems, but it’s more than some people need. BlueStacks X is a new tool that lets you run certain Android games right from your web browser.
What Does BlueStacks X Do?
Basically, BlueStacks X is a lightweight version of BlueStacks that only runs specific applications. Specifically, it runs a select list of popular Android games on just about any platform with a web browser.
BlueStacks made the browser-based version of its software under the now.gg brand. While it’s a cloud-based service, some of the rendering and computation is done by your device locally, and some is done in the cloud.
There are 14 games playable in the beta version of BlueStacks X. Some popular games include Raid: Shadow Legends, Disney Sorcerer’s Arena, and Lords Mobile: Kingdom Wars.
Outside of playing games, BlueStacks X also has a Discord bot that will allow you to launch supported Android games and share them with others.
In an interview with The Verge, BlueStacks CEO Rosen Sharma said, “We’ll also allow you to customize what games you want on your server, and if you play those games together, you automatically get connected to a Discord voice channel so everyone can just click and play the cloud game.”
There’s also a social feed that’ll be part of the Discord experience, which the BlueStacks CEO describes as being similar to what Venmo did to PayPal. “It’s like what Venmo did to PayPal,” says Sharma. “PayPal were just sending money and Venmo made it into a social feed.”
I Gave It a Try
BlueStacks X is available to try right now, and since I happen to be an avid Raid: Shadow Legends player, I figured I’d give it a try. The game is entirely playable, though the web-based BlueStacks lacks the full desktop version’s auto-clicking and other quality of life features.
I should also note that Raid was fairly choppy on my 2017 MacBook Pro with Google Chrome. It didn’t make a difference for a turn-based game like Raid, but I could see games like Call of Duty Mobile and PUBG being challenging to play with the choppy visuals. That would probably explain why the games supported at launch are all of a similar style to Raid.
Either way, if you’re a fan of one of the supported games, you can give BlueStacks X a try right now for free and see how it runs on your system.