Google Stadia

Yesterday, Google made its grand entrance into the world of game streaming. The search giant announced Stadia at the Game Developer’s Conference in San Francisco, showing off a bold vision for a gaming future where anyone could play any game on any screen, with all the hard processing work done at an off-site data center. It’s not the first streaming service that’s been meant to disrupt the industry, but it is one of the most convincing. When it launches in 2019, however, a major question will be what games we’ll be able to play on it. Google was pretty light on those particular specifics for this presentation, but we do know three titles.

Assassin’s Creed Odyssey:

No surprises here. Assassin’s Creed Odyssey was the test case for Project Stream, and people have already played a remote version of this game in a web browser. Google used Assassin’s Creed Odyssey to show off the new tech during the presentation as a demonstrator moved from phone to TV to laptop and PC playing the same game session.

Doom Eternal

This was meant to answer some of people’s doubts about Stadia. Where Odyssey is a relatively forgiving title that can handle a little latency without disrupting the experience, Doom Eternal is set to be a lighting quick twitch shooter where even a tiny bit of input lag could absolutely wreck a play session. Announcing Doom Eternal was Google’s way of saying that they were aware of these concerns and wanted to meet them.

The game will be playable at the convention, but that isn’t a huge test, to be honest. If it’s going to work well anywhere, it’s going to work well in downtown San Francisco with a beefy connection running into the Moscone Center. The real test will be when this hits someone living out in a rural area, far away from a data center and with a slow connection.

Something from Q-Games:

Maybe you can’t say it’s confirmed if you don’t actually know what it is, but there wasn’t a lot to work with in that presentation. Google confirmed that Dylan Cuthbert’s Q-Games would be building a game around the “state share” feature that will allow you to instantly start playing a game at the same moment as a Youtube video or a live Youtube stream. There are a lot of possibilities there even for normal gaming, and so the possibility of an entire game built around that mechanic is intriguing. Easy to see how it goes wrong, but intriguing.

And that’s the list: this was clearly the conceptual presentation, with more announcements to come. Google has confirmed that Stadia will have exclusive games, and it’s hired AAA gaming industry very Jade Raymond to head up a studio called Stadia Games and Entertainment.

Google teased some more titles with images before the presentation that seemed to correspond to AAA titles like Red Dead Redemption 2, Skyrim, Metal Gear Solid and what I’m assuming were the full suite of EA sports titles. There was also something with bullets and a drone that could have been basically anything. A tease is not a confirmation, however, and none of the actual names of those games appeared anywhere in that presentation.

Article written by: Dave Thier