Well, at least they were honest? Members of the Google Stadia team took to Reddit for an AMA that gleefully revealed a significant chunk of features that will not be available to the console at launch.
So what’s missing at launch?
- Stream Connect, State Share, Crowd Play — all features that make Stadia capable of having others hop into your game as they want — won’t be in. The first Stream Connect-capable game is expected at the end of this year, while games with State Share and Crowd Play are expected next year.
- Achievements won’t be in at launch. There won’t even be a UI. However, the Stadia is apparently going to collect achievement information that will be retroactively added later.
- Existing Chromecast Ultra users won’t be able to play games at launch. The Chromecast Ultras shipping with Stadia will be the only ones with the capable firmware, but existing users will be getting an update “soon.”
- Family Sharing won’t be in until early next year. The workaround suggested is “buy games for your child’s account.”
- Buddy Passes, a three-month subscription to hand out to friends that were promised for Founders Editions of Stadia, won’t be in at launch. Expect those two weeks after, barring any complications.
- The ability to purchase games from a Stadia UI won’t be in. You need a phone to buy games. Luckily we know that you all have phones.
- Accessibility options will not be in. In fact, there’s no clear timeline on if they’ll be in at all. “Accessibility is pretty game-specific, so the team is working with game developers to set standards for accessibility across all games on Stadia,” reads the reply.
The AMA opened with a timeline for Stadia’s release, which won’t be a matter of waiting for a package to arrive. Orders are due to ship on November 19th, but folks will receive their invite code at 12:00 p.m. EST to create their Stadia account and start using the service on their home PCs. Once the Founders Edition package arrives, then users can set up the Chromecast and controller for use on their TVs. One of the Google Stadia team members even went so far as to offer hand delivery of a Stadia if you live in the Bay Area, which is totally a foolproof idea and not liable to blow up in his face.