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Google Stadia is a mess. Initial impressions suggest

By now, we all know more or less about Stadia. Google made no secret of its big foray into game streaming. The founder’s editions of the console have reached reviewers recently. So how is the feedback so far?

Not very exciting, we’re afraid.

Read more: Google launching game streaming service “Stadia”

The promise of Stadia

Google hyped up Stadia to the point where it sounded like the future of gaming in general. The cloud-based service promised to change the way we play games. The cloud storage would remove the need to download game content. Click on a hyperlink and just dive into a game of your choosing; without sacrificing any resolution demands.

In the face of all that potential, here’s how the product actually feels like:
It feels like it hasn’t really launched yet.

The delivery

Disclaimer: Stadia works. We’re not trying to say it’s just some sort of scheme that doesn’t. You can play games via the cloud service, without any physical discs or large downloads. It just doesn’t work as it is supposed to.

A lot of the key features promised are not present. One of the biggest prospects that could change how multiplayer works; the ability to join a game that you’ve been watching at the click of a button? It’s not there.

In addition (more like subtraction), Stadia doesn’t have iOS support, no working friend-list, and no games with Stream Connect. And you can’t really buy a Stadia right now.

Hardware problems

The service is supposed to be free(technically). What you can get right now to play a Stadia game is the Stadia Pro; which is only available through the Stadia Premiere Edition Bundle.

There is no other way to access the service other than by Buddy Pass. Which allows a Stadia Pro owner to give you access to try the service. Thing is, this feature isn’t available at launch.

So, in simple terms, you are paying full price to buy a console. This console was going to eliminate the need to own hardware to play games. This console itself is hardware.

How it holds up

This is all to be considered with the information in mind that Stadia the service was always supposed to be free. You would still have to purchase games to play on the service. But you would be able to play them anywhere, on anything. Even a browser.

To be fair, the Stadia does run games smoothly enough.

There are input lags and stutterings, but not to the extent where it becomes a major bother. The games look fine as well.

Right now, you are paying for a console that delivers on none of the big promises it made. You’re better off buying a PC or a different console at the moment.

Conclusion

This isn’t to say Stadia won’t be what it set out to be eventually. The point is it isn’t right now. But Google still “launched” it at full price.

Google Stadia might just end up becoming the future of gaming. But it isn’t at present. So probably you should hold off on this purchase for the time being.

Google launching game streaming service “Stadia”

Remember that streaming service for gaming everyone wouldn’t shut up about? Although it wasn’t even here yet?

It’s here.

Google’s stadia

Google is launching the Stadia cloud gaming service at the San Francisco GDC (Game Developers Conference). CEO Sundar Pichai spoke about the company’s ambition to make Stadia a platform for everyone. Google hopes to stream games to all devices. But as of now, Stadia will stream games to the PC, laptop, tablet computers, TV and mobile phones.

How it works

Pichai and Phil Harrison, former Microsoft and Sony executive unveiled Stadia onstage. According to Harrison, YouTube will be used to add to the service. This comes in the form of a new feature, which allows one to view a game clip from a YouTube creator and hit a “play now” button to instantly access streaming service to the game. And this feature doesn’t require one to download or install any games. You can play through the google chrome browser. The feature was previously hinted at during Google’s trial period of Stadia deemed “Project Stream”. Many Chrome users accessed Assassin’s Creed Odyssey through the browser and streamed mostly seamless gameplay.

Part of the demonstration was moving gameplay seamlessly from a phone to a tablet and then to a TV.

A Stadia controller will also be launched and will work with the service by connecting through Wi-Fi. It will make moving games between devices smoother, and also being able to use one controller for all your devices is kind of cool. Games can be run at 4K at 60 FPS at launch, and up to 8K resolutions with 120 FPS will be made available in the future. A custom GPU will be released for Google datacenters, partnering with AMD. The GPU is expected to be more powerful and efficient than the ones used in the PS4 pro and even the Xbox One X.

Doom Eternal will be one of the launch titles for Stadia. And a cheeky reference to The Elder Scrolls series was also made courtesy of an image with a sword, a potion flask and a knee with an arrow sticking out. Make of that what you will. Google is planning to use State Share for players to share gameplay instances, down to specific parts of the game.

Competition looms in the horizon

In short, this has the potential to change the landscape of the gaming industry, if done right. And although Google seem like the first of the pack to unveil a firm offering, they are to face stiff competition from Microsoft and Amazon who are to release similar service later this year. Things are starting to get very intriguing indeed.