Google Stadia has game developers excited about the possibilities and potential of the platform. Just days before the launch of Google’s anticipated new game streaming service, Gamesradar sat down with Google’s Phil Harrison, Jade Raymond and Majd Bakar, as well as a few indie game developers, to talk about Stadia.
Google Stadia will launch on November 19th in 14 countries. Amongst them the US, UK, Germany and France. To everyone’s surprise, Google announced that they will launch with just 12 games. However, another 20 or so games are set to launch shortly after. Along with that as well, Ubisoft announced that they will put their entire Uplay+ catalog on Stadia over the coming months.
Amongst the 12 launch titles are Kine and Gylt. Gamesradar talked to both game developers and their excitement about what’s possible with Stadia was very obvious. Gwen Frey, who develops Kine, mentioned that Stadia was unique and one-of-a-kind because you are no longer limited by the performance of a single PC or console. The developers of Tequila Works expressed similar excitement.
The reason why game developers are excited about Stadia
Creative director at Tequila Works Studios, Raúl Rubio Munárriz, said in the interview that performance becomes irrelevant when developing on Stadia. For example, you no longer have to share a limited set of resources to do AI and physics in a game. You just add more compute to an instance and performance scales with your requirements. The key to this is what is known as “elastic compute” in the world of cloud computing. Workloads are no longer tied to a single machine. Instead, operations can spread across multiple machines working together. Imagine having four PS4 consoles acting as one, offering your game four times the performance of a single PS4. You can essentially do that on Google’s Stadia platform.
Project lead of the game Gylt (Tequila Works), David Canela adds to this by saying, there will be a lot less lag in games as Stadia progresses further over time, because Google keeps updating the underlying infrastructure, replacing servers with more powerful gear and optimizing processes and APIs as well as their datacenter networks.
Who will make use of this?
“There’s a lot of interesting untapped potential in Stadia and I think a lot of it is going to have to be explored by indies.”Gwen Frey
It is unlikely that large publishers like Ubisoft or EA will tap into this potential for their AAA titles, because they are publishing on multiple platforms and are concerned that the experience must be the same across the board. Gwen Frey believes this will be up to indie developers, who have a lot more flexibility and can get really creative.
Then there is Google itself, who launched their own “first party” game studio, led by industry veteran Jade Raymond. Raymond’s background is vast. She helped develop games such as Assassins Creed, Splinter Cell: Blacklist, Watch Dogs and Star Wars: Battlefront, as well as Sims Online. She led various game studios under Ubisoft, EA and Sony and is now responsible to produce exclusive first party content for Stadia. With her experience, we might actually see some incredible Stadia games a few years down the road, that will really show the platform’s full potential.
What do you think? Will Stadia be a game changer or yet another product for Google’s growing product graveyard? Let us know in the comment section below.