Google’s is looking to expand its streaming game service in 2020. They announced plans in the beginning of the year to add over 120 games in the next twelve months. Along with those additional features are also in the works. Vice president and general manager Phil Harrison for Google has indicated to Protocol a free option coming soon.
“The big strategic difference is that over the next few months you will be able to experience Stadia for free”
He goes on to explain it will be a no money down, no specialized hardware, simply click and play experience. Presently if you’re not using a computer the only other option is thru Pixel Phones or with a Chromecast dongle. The Stadia Premiere Edition will set you back $129 but comes with controller, Chromecast, and 3 months of Stadia Pro. Protocol notes that the game industry had over $150 billion in revenue in 2019 so game streaming options are gaining interest from the tech sector. By comparison that’s over two times the global take in from the film industry.
Google Stadia has had to live up to lofty demands with promises of both 1080p and 4K gaming. Initial reviews have not always been the best but showed some promise. Another critique has been the limited amount of games currently available. Their catalog does, however, include some big names along with some future AAA games due to release in 2020.
Some have felt that Stadia’s rocky start may cause its abandonment. That remains to be seen but OneZero’s Eric Ravenscraft has offered some perspective on his experiences. After a month and half, he’s seen that although it’s not quite ready for cutting edge visuals, or fast paced games, it can offer something for those on a more casual level. This is consistent with Eurogamer’s review at launch.