Developer Kevin Smith, who previously demonstrated a version of the MAME emulator running on the new Apple TV, has now made some tweaks to existing open source tools to allow game streaming from a PC to the new Apple TV. Smith took advantage of the Moonlight iOS open source project based on NVIDIA's GameStream, modifying it to run on tvOS.
Using this modified version of Moonlight iOS, Smith was able to stream games from Steam on a PC directly to the Apple TV. Without the need to run directly on the Apple device, streamed games can appear as high-quality as the source computer allows, with obvious Wi-Fi and streaming strength limitations taken into account when used without a wired Ethernet connection. In the video below, Smith tests the Moonlight client out on the new Apple TV with popular open-world game Grand Theft Auto V.
With the launch of the new Apple TV at the end of October, Apple took its first significant steps into the world of couch gaming, thanks to a full App Store for third-party apps included on the new tvOS operating system for the platform.
Although the Apple TV supports wireless gaming controllers that account for a few exceptions, most of the gaming apps that function best on the Apple TV remain as iOS-like side-scrollers and platforms rather than more sophisticated console-level games.
While it is still in the early days for the new Apple TV, momentum does appear to be building. For example, Facebook last week announced a new SDK for developers to "build immersive social experiences" on Apple TV with a number of features including a confirmation code login system that can bypass the cumbersome text entry of the Apple TV.