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Google Stadia

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Ashan
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Google Stadia

Postby Ashan » 1 year ago

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Google announced today that they're releasing a controller and a platform for streaming games through a web browser.
This isn't entirely new technology, but Google could have a serious advantage over the other guys doing this, just from how many datacenters they have all over the world, meaning more people will have access to lower latency streaming from a server near them.

As much as I like the idea of a new option being available for video games, I can't help but be pessimistic just because it's Google and they're quickly becoming the Disney of the internet, in that they're headed in a direction where they're gonna have a monopoly on the entire internet (if that's not already the case). On the other hand they have a habit of launching projects and just forgetting about them, though it sounds like they have some fairly big partnerships with game studios which might force them to not abandon it.

What are your thoughts?

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Re: Google Stadia

Postby Mata Hari » 1 year ago

I'll believe it when I see it

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Re: Google Stadia

Postby Leet » 1 year ago

I really don't want this to catch on, it's bad for everyone except google
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Re: Google Stadia

Postby KobaBeach » 1 year ago

i find it ironic how google has a "dont be evil" motto but they're trying to make a monopoly out of the internet
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Re: Google Stadia

Postby Blivsey » 1 year ago

Dead on arrival to me, seeing as I still live under a data cap
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Re: Google Stadia

Postby Cyril » 1 year ago

No
i've honestly never played a video game in my life
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Ashan
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Re: Google Stadia

Postby Ashan » 1 year ago

I forgot I made this thread.

I guess I should update my opinion on this now that I've had some time for it to soak, as well as hear some more information and opinions.

The closer this gets to launch, the more I hate everything about the concept of it, and the more I actively want this to flop on its face. I also kind of expect it to fail, if not only because it's coming from Google and they cannot create anything successful.
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Re: Google Stadia

Postby Reecer7 » 1 year ago

In Giant Bomb's fun yearly E3 late night talk show, they had a whole interview with someone from Google who seemed very sincerely excited that Stadia was going to change gaming at its core, or something. But when he got asked the question of how they'd deal with obstacles like data bottlenecks, especially in regions where one ISP has full control of the market, all he said was something like "Never bet against the Internet."

And that's basically why I have no faith in Stadia.
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Re: Google Stadium

Postby Awoo » 1 year ago

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Re: Google Stadia

Postby Ashan » 7 months ago

Google Stadia launches today.

Seems like it is perfect for people who are really into AAA games but not enough to build a PC or spend a pithy $300 every 7 years for a console (or less if you buy used) but for some reason don't mind paying full price or unimpressive digital storefront sale prices for games and also don’t mind random input lag and occasional frame drops and also they have fast, reliable internet provided by an ISP that isn’t going to throttle your speed during peak hours or god forbid give you a monthly data cap and said internet never gets congested and also they live within walking distance to a Google datacenter and aren’t worried about Google canning the service in 2-3 years like they do with most of their services making them lose all the full-price games they paid for.

And by "perfect" I mean "okay"
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Re: Google Stadia

Postby BobisOnlyBob » 7 months ago

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Re: Google Stadia

Postby Kilgamayan » 7 months ago

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Re: Google Stadia

Postby Ashan » 7 months ago

I was keeping a bit of a following of reviews that all went up yesterday (speaking of, isn't it usually a bad sign in games when press embargo is lifted the day before launch?) and the most positive ones I saw were basically "it's fine." And of those positive reviews, it seemed like most of those people lived in/near the San Francisco bay area, meaning they're basically the optimal user and probably not a good source of what the typical experience will be like. The most damning review circulating was from Forbes whose reviewer lives in Ohio, and despite his 350mbps internet connection, he said it only worked like 80% of the time and the rest was dropped frames and hiccups.

Even aside from the technical issues, I just don't know who this is for.
If you're worried about saving money, I can't imagine a situation where Stadia will save you money over buying used physical games, or hell just borrowing from a friend. Even in the most optimal case, I imagine the sales could roughly be on par with Steam sales, but even those haven't been particularly great for a few years.
If you want to play on-the-go, I don't know any situations where you'd be out and about with access to an ideal, fast, uncongested internet connection that again, is close to a Google data center.
If it's for people who are so into gaming that they can't imagine leaving the house without their video game, you probably already own these games on other systems and will be forced to re-buy them, and most games will not have cross-save so you'll be starting fresh. Plus I think anyone that into games would not be fine with having their game ruined by stutters and whatnot.

And honestly aside from these issues, I just don't want anything like this to take off because of how anti-consumer it is. It takes DRM to its furthest extreme, where you straight up don't have real access to anything you purchased even though you're paying the same prices. It's also an absolute nightmare for games preservation. At least in the digital download form of DRM, if those games are someday pulled from the store, chances are you can still play it on the system you downloaded it to, or pirate it. In a dystopian future where game streaming is the standard for video games, the only games you will be able to play at a specific point in time is whatever is being offered from game streaming companies. You won't be able to pirate the games cause no one has access to the files, so games could just be forever lost to time because the publisher decided to stop selling.

Driver San Francisco is a game that somewhat recently became impossible to purchase because of a situation like this. If it was only ever offered on game streaming, that game would be lost forever and nobody could play it ever again.
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Re: Google Stadia

Postby BobisOnlyBob » 7 months ago

Ashan wrote: Driver San Francisco is a game that somewhat recently became impossible to purchase because of a situation like this. If it was only ever offered on game streaming, that game would be lost forever and nobody could play it ever again.
Unless you pay with Sandwich Tokens.

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Re: Google Stadia

Postby Ashan » 7 months ago

Yeah that was the video that made me aware of that situation in particular
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Re: Google Stadia

Postby Ashan » 7 months ago

Oh boy, we were just getting started with this launch disaster.
Apparently everyone has been getting their founders editions in the mail (controller + chromecast) but Google hasn't sent out the registration codes to make it so you can actually... use the product...

Google said the codes would be sent out when the devices were shipped and that never happened and now it's been a full day since launch and people still aren't able to play with the device that was physically shipped to them. It's especially pissing people off because one of the perks Google claimed you got with the founder's edition was first picks of unique names on the service, and the people who preordered earlier would get earlier registration emails than people who preordered later. Guess that's not happening!

I was occasionally checking in on the Stadia subreddit, and in the few days between pre-launch and post-launch, it turned from a giant circlejerk about how great it's gonna be to a dumpster fire of people freaking out about getting their codes. There's a popular post right now sharing a petition demanding Google compensate them for their failure to deliver.

I suppose this state of having the controller but being unable to use it to play games is just practice for in 3 years when they shut the servers down.
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Re: Google Saturn

Postby Awoo » 7 months ago

Ashan wrote: I suppose this state of having the controller but being unable to use it to play games is just practice for in 3 years when they shut the servers down.
3 years? I'd say that seems a little optimistic. This has to be one of the most botched console releases in years :ehh:
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Re: Google Stadia

Postby KobaBeach » 7 months ago

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Re: Google Stadia

Postby Ashan » 7 months ago

That tweet is apparently deleted now but I happened to have grabbed a screenshot so in case anyone missed it:
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Re: Google Stadia

Postby Bean » 7 months ago

Google's arrogance and ignorance strikes again. They're really bad at just about everything lately, he says as he types up on Chrome instead of the memory hog that Firefox has become in recent years. Okay, they're good at one thing.

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Re: Google Stadia

Postby Kleetus » 7 months ago

All of what I know about Stadia comes from the commercials. I think a problem Google has with Stadia is advertising. After all the commercials, I'm still not 100% sure what it is. Also I think there might have have been only one commercial that was briefly shown that focused on the video games for the service (it is a service right?). Like, I don't think I could name any games on Stadia, and video games are the main selling point of video game playing things, that's a problem.
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Re: Google Stadia

Postby KobaBeach » 7 months ago

Ashan wrote: That tweet is apparently deleted now but I happened to have grabbed a screenshot so in case anyone missed it:
vox deleted it because it attracted shitlords who got legit mad at the controller i'm betting
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Re: Google Stadia

Postby SAJewers » 7 months ago

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Re: Google Stadia

Postby YelseyKing » 7 months ago

Kleetus wrote: All of what I know about Stadia comes from the commercials. I think a problem Google has with Stadia is advertising. After all the commercials, I'm still not 100% sure what it is. Also I think there might have have been only one commercial that was briefly shown that focused on the video games for the service (it is a service right?). Like, I don't think I could name any games on Stadia, and video games are the main selling point of video game playing things, that's a problem.
I suppose "people not knowing what it *is*" would be *part* of the problem, but the thing is, those who *do* know what it is and does are just as put off by how wildly impractical it is. Ashan pretty much covered it, but near as I can tell, the market for this console is essentially one who fits all four of these criteria:

1) They are into video games. Naturally.
2) ...but they somehow do not own a gaming-capable PC, XBox One, PS4, or Switch...
3) ...yet they have a blazing fast internet connection that's also very stable and lacking in data caps...
4) ...and they also own a mobile phone, because that's the only way to actually *buy games* for the thing.

While #4 is practically a given these days (even if I *don't* have one, nor want one, myself), the rest are very unlikely, since if #1 applies to you, odds are you have at least *one* modern console or at the *very* least, a decent enough gaming PC. And if you *don't*, it's *still* more cost effective and practical to buy one of *those* options instead. #3 is the biggest sticking point, though, as internet is just terrible in most of the world; certainly not capable of reliably handling 60fps at 4K resolution.

So, while marketing may be *some* of the problem, it's just as unclear who it's marketed *for* in the first place.
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Re: Google Stadia

Postby Ashan » 7 months ago

It's not even JUST that you need a blazing fast internet connection. An equally important factor is your physical proximity to the server it's being streamed from. Google does have quite a few data centers around the world, but if you're not close to one, even if you have a perfect internet connection, the video stream they're sending to you is going to have to travel a further distance if you're further from where the frames are being rendered. Like I mentioned, the Forbes reviewer had a 350mbps internet connection but said the gameplay was only fine about 80% of the time and the rest of it was unplayable. I wouldn't be surprised if the only reason this project got the greenlight in the first place was because the technology was demoed to some Google executives at Google HQ where the server was in the same building is them.

No matter how good internet speeds get, Google is always going to be fighting the physics of beaming frames up to a resolution of 4096x2160, 60 times per second to your home without any hitches. Even if your internet is fast enough to consistently stream 4k videos on YouTube or Netflix, that doesn't translate to streaming a game because it had to be constantly pumping a video stream to you as instantaneously as possible in real time. A video can buffer some of that data faster than it's being displayed and show it to you later, that's inherently not possible with a game that needs to change in real time with your inputs.

SPEAKING OF THAT -- this thing is overheating Chromecast Ultras after a few hours. Whoops!
https://9to5google.com/2019/11/21/stadi ... -shutdown/
You would have figured this would be caught in QA but I guess even the people being paid to play Stadia didn't want to do it for more than a few hours at a time. And who can blame them?

What's extra pathetic is that the Chromecast Ultra was already a thing that existed on the market for quite a while before Stadia, but they bundled it with the Stadia founder's edition and preloaded it with an update that existing Chromecasts won't get until later. So they bundled "special" Chromecasts with this thing yet didn't update the hardware so it could actually run Stadia without overheating.

It's honestly blowing my mind how badly Google has fumbled this launch. I figured it wouldn't be great regardless just because of the aforementioned physics of it all, but they somehow managed to come up with a million unique and clever ways of screwing it up that I could have never predicted.
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