The Daily Grind: So, do you think Google’s Stadia will revolutionize gaming?

    
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Yesterday’s Google presentation and announcement of Stadia – and all its attendant accoutrements – set the internet as well as our staff chattering about the implications. MMO players in particular have seen this whole “streamed gaming is the future!” stuff before, and it always goes nowhere… but hey, if anybody can do it, it’ll be Google, right?

We saw multiple MMO developers weigh in. Smed was stoked. Fairytale’s Alexander Zacherl homed in on the potential to end cheating and hacking. CSE’s Andrew Meggs quirked an eyebrow at Google’s insistence on calling streamers, rather than actual game devs, “creators.” Scott Hartsman expressed skepticism about potential business models. Our own team could see only negatives in things like Crowdplay – and streamers aren’t happy about it either. And what about MMORPG virtual worlds? What about modding? Privacy? Competitive gaming? Am I going to keep making that scrunchy face every time they randomly use the plural Latin word for stadium? There are a lot of questions we just don’t have answers for yet. Especially that Latin one.

So given what we do know, what do you think – will Google’s Stadia revolutionize gaming? Should Microsoft and Sony and Nintendo be nervous? Will this change the face of gaming at all, and if so, for the better? Or is this just another one of Google’s mad plans that will quietly dissipate and be canceled four years from now?

Every morning, the Massively Overpowered writers team up with mascot Mo to ask MMORPG players pointed questions about the massively multiplayer online roleplaying genre. Grab a mug of your preferred beverage and take a stab at answering the question posed in today’s Daily Grind!
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socontrariwise

I don’t see this go anywhere in the next few years. It needs 25-30 Mbps to work and as someone who owns a SteamLink that is running on wire because even Wifi is problematic with the latency and bandwith up and downs … yeah right.
I have more games in my library than I will likely every play, most games are simply not interesting at all, nothing to make me “Oh my god, I need to play that and if it is exclusive to Stadia I better update my internet speeds”.

Not worth it if I have to pay for monthly upgrades to speed (and be locked in then for a contract) what the game would cost otherwise bought and then some, not even accounting for the game access fee.
Google itself is getting out of the fiber business so they don’t even drive the hardware facilitation anymore. Basically I fail to see any reasonable business concept here beyond “but but but stream”!

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Sally Bowls

Google itself is getting out of the fiber business so they don’t even drive the hardware facilitation anymore.

Google is out of the fiber business because they have decided that the “last mile” is going to be wireless. (This is unfortunate as I could lie to myself and think I was going to get fiber in 5-10 years. Now, my high-speed is further off.) But that does not mean they are necessarily dropping out of the internet business. IMO, we can make better WAG once we see the winners of the US 5G spectrum auctions.

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Sally Bowls

FWIW: Microsoft’s validation and E3

A Mathematician once said the three stages of responses to your proof are 1) It’s wrong 2)It’s trivial 3) I thought of it first.

E.g.Phil: “validation of the path we embarked on two years ago”

https://games.slashdot.org/story/19/03/20/208218/energizing-times-microsoft-to-go-big-at-e3-in-response-to-google-stadia

We just wrapped up watching the Google announcement of Stadia as team here at GDC. Their announcement is validation of the path we embarked on two years ago.. Today we saw a big tech competitor enter the gaming market, and frame the necessary ingredients for success as Content, Community and Cloud. There were no big surprises in their announcement although I was impressed by their leveraging of YouTube, the use of Google Assistant and the new WiFi controller.

But I want get back to us, there has been really good work to get us to the position where we are poised to compete for 2 billion gamers across the planet. Google went big today and we have a couple of months until E3 when we will go big. We have to stay agile and continue to build with our customer at the center. We have the content, community, cloud team and strategy, and as I’ve been saying for a while, it’s all about execution. This is even more true today. Energizing times.

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Sally Bowls

FWIW another theory / WAG:

Stadia is about the future of YouTube, not gaming – Google’s starting a revolution just to keep things as they are

https://www.theverge.com/2019/3/20/18274184/google-stadia-youtube-streaming-future-gaming-cloud

Google gets more than 200 million logged-in daily active users watching gaming content. That’s 200 million pairs of eyes to present ads to every day. In 2018, YouTube accumulated more than 50 billion watched hours of gaming content.

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Sally Bowls

FYI Bree, Continuity of Affectation means that if there is more than one forum in Stadia, we pretentious shall call them fora.

oldandgrumpy
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oldandgrumpy

Nope.

One day in the distant future I will have a high bandwidth low latency internet connection provided by a reliable internet provided and it won’t cost the earth /s

Random MMO fan
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Random MMO fan

OnLive didn’t revolutionize anything, neither will this. Only positive aspect is that there will be no cheaters. The rest are mostly negatives. Especially when people will have to deal with their ISP throttling down their streams.

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Anstalt

No, it won’t revolutionise anything.

First, this has already been tried a number of times and has failed badly each time. There is nothing to suggest that Google will do any better, because the main issues (internet speed and latency) are still present.

Second, I don’t trust Google. They just aren’t good at anything except selling advertising space. Even their search engine isn’t very good, Android is pretty awful, its just cheaper than Apple. They routinely sell off our personal data which is now illegal in the EU. They’ve also just been fined $1.5b for anti-competitive practices in the EU (again…).

Third, unless the games library is massive and covers at least 75% of the games that I would want to play, I’m still going to need a console or PC in order to play the games that I want to play. So, this wouldn’t save me money, it would just be an extra cost. I also can’t imagine there being many exclusives and I’d rather spend £10-£40 to buy the game outright, rather than rely on a subscription.

Fourth, Microsoft, Sony and Nintendo are going to fight this. They each have masses of money tied up in consoles and they aren’t going to want to let that go. Those companies have a far greater history in gaming and much better relationships with developers than Google.

Fifth, what little I know of cloud computing suggests that to achieve the speed and graphics quality required, its going to cost a hell of a lot of money to build the infrastructure. As games continue to improve, so will the infrastructure have to improve. It doesn’t seem commercially viable unless they’re going to charge tons of money for it.

Jibrille
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Jibrille

Out of curiosity, which search engine do you use instead?

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Anstalt

mostly google and bing for everyday things (i have ms phone), then duckduckgo when either of them can’t give me the answers (typically programming related queries)

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styopa

Nah, it’s the logical expansion of webgames. It’s going to hurt low-end consoles – are there any? Nintendo? Might hurt consoles in the US, generally.
There will still be devotees who want to see their game in 4k, but I would guess most would settle for 1920×1280 and a huge VARIETY of games available.

(Google says it offers in 4k at 25meg connection; 1) I’ll believe it when I see it, 2) a 4K game is going to tap out most people’s connections pretty quickly when they start to hit that data/month cap they never realized they actually had….)

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Sally Bowls

I have been reading Cringely for decades: his snark on Google (albeit about cloud computing in general not Stadia) is “Google does not understand customers whose IQs are sub-200. As such, Google doesn’t have (and likely won’t) have a history of winning outside of search advertising.”

2019 Predictions #2 and #3 — A Virtual Private Cloud (VPC) shakeout and legal trouble for AWS

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socontrariwise

That is a good point after becoming a GSuite user and realizing how clunky and unpolished a lot of these components are once you leave the basic gmail for private use sector. I feel like I left from “polished for customer who don’t pay except with data” to “unfinished rough enthusiast building kit with lots of ridiculous lacking pieces for customers who actually DO pay per person that is added as user”.
Strongly considering moving to Office 365 suddenly while I loved Gmail.

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Michael18

I think the main potential in the short/mid term is that it might make “core games” accessible to people who are not willing to pay $500 up-front for a console or gaming PC (or just don’t want to have to deal with maintaining those devices in their home). Currently, those people only have mobile or browser games available to them but many might enjoy full-blown games (better gfx, deeper mechanics and game play). I guess this market could be huge.

For “true” gamers who are used to or even enjoy buying gaming equipment I cannot imagine this tech to be an alternative anytime soon (but might be in the long run).

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imayb1

I think of the folks I know who’re paying for an X-Box Gold sub or a game’s season pass and (depending upon the cost, of course), they’d be willing to shell out for a service like Stadia. What games are available will matter to them. I can definitely see them giving it a try, though.