About a month ago, Google announced its cloud gaming service Google Stadia, which is set to come out in November this year. We now know that Google is branding the new service as the “Netflix of games”. However, Google Stadia is not going to be primarily a subscription service.
To get started, you will need to subscribe to Stadia Pro for a $10 monthly fee and get a catalog of free games. Stadia Basic will roll out in 2020 and offer gamers to buy games a la carte instead of committing to a subscription. The company declared that the cloud games will come with competitive retail prices, as you will find on other platforms like Xbox Live, PlayStation Network, and Steam.
What is Stadia Pro?
Stadia Pro will cost you $10 per month and provide you with access to a selection of free games, as well as discounts on full game purchases. One of the announced free games so far is Destiny 2 with all of its add-ons including the upcoming Shadowkeep expansion. Unfortunately, Google still hasn’t confirmed how many games will come with the subscription at launch or how often they will add new games.
What’s more, is that all games will run in 4K at 60fps with 5.1 surround sound. That is, of course, if you have the required 35 Mbps of bandwidth. The minimum requirements are 10 Mbps of bandwidth to stream at 720p with stereo sound. If the connection is at least 20 Mbps, users will get HDR but will be able to stream only at 1080p.
With Microsoft partnering up with Sony for the creation of cloud gaming service, Google’s entry in the market comes as no surprise. It is a clear sign that the industry itself is starting to deviate from specialized gaming hardware like PlayStation and Nintendo Switch, to screens that connect to game services over the web.
As it seems, Google Stadia will compete on the front line with Microsoft’s Project xCloud. However, the second is falling behind so far. While, Microsoft announced that they will only be testing xCloud in October, Google Stadia is expected to launch already in November.
Furthermore, Google is making partnerships with companies like Bungie to allow users to transfer their existing characters from Microsoft Xbox or Sony PlayStation to Stadia. This is an example of how Google plans to offer “cross play and cross collaboration”.
On top of that, Google intends to offer cross-platform games that can be streamed on the different screens players have. Also, users will be able to jump into a game through a button on Youtube, while watching their favorite gamer.
So, what games will we be able to play? A fair question.
Here is the list of some of the announced games that will be available on Google Stadia:
- 2K Games – NBA 2K, Borderlands 3
- Bandai Namco – Dragon Ball Xenoverse 2
- Bethesda – DOOM Eternal, DOOM 2016, Rage 2, The Elder Scrolls Online, Wolfenstein: Youngblood
- Bungie – Destiny 2
- Coatsink – Get Packed
- Codemasters – GRID
- Deep Silver – Metro Exodus
- Giants Software – Farming Simulator 19
- Larian Studios – Baldur’s Gate 3
- nWay Games – Power Rangers: Battle for the Grid
- Sega – Football Manager
- SNK – Samurai Shodown
- Square Enix – Final Fantasy XV, Tomb Raider Definitive Edition, Rise of the Tomb Raider, Shadow of the Tomb Raider
- Tequila Works – Gylt
- THQ – Darksiders Genesis
- Ubisoft – Assassin’s Creed Odyssey, Just Dance, Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon Breakpoint, Tom Clancy’s The Division 2, Trials Rising, The Crew 2
- Warner Bros. – Mortal Kombat 11
Surely, this is just the beginning, as Google is expected to announce more games this week during E3. Still, it already looks like major video game publishers are super hyped about the idea. Some of them are even eager to bring brand-new games from high-profile franchises like Wolfenstein, Doom, and Ghost Recon to Stadia’s catalog.
Google is still not revealing whether they will provide their own internally developed Stadia-exclusive titles. But, it won’t be a surprise if they actually decide to go that way. After all, if they want to really become “Netflix of games”, then Stadia might as well develop their own games similar to how Netflix is making their own series and movies.