Last month, we reported that Google was going to deliver a big announcement during its keynote address at GDC. Speculation was the company would announce a new streaming service, platform, or even a combination of the two, and we listed what Google needed to do in order to ensure their late entry to the gaming sphere would be successful.
Now it’s official: Google is entering the game streaming war. The tech giant announced Stadia, a cloud based streaming service, during its keynote GDC press conference. Stadia can stream Triple-A games on a multitude of devices including TV’s, PC’s, laptops, as well as select phones and tablets. Games can also in 4K HDR at 60 FPS, performance benchmarks that put the streams in line with the way technologically advanced games run on powerful consumer PCs. The service will also have YouTube integration — you’ll be able to buy a game you’re watching a YouTube stream of for example — and a dedicated controller with a built in microphone, although other controllers will work with the service.
Google’s salvo in the streaming wars isn’t a surprise. Project Stream, a widely praised demo of its game streaming technology, debuted in late 2018 and let players stream Assassin’s Creed: Odyssey directly in the Google Chrome browser.
New games for the service are yet to be announced. Beyond ID Software’s Doom Eternal, Google wasn’t forthcoming with the Stadia’s lineup of titles, and the company was additionally even more tight-lipped about the Stadia’s exact 2019 release date and price point. Google did reveal that Jade Raymond, the former Ubisoft and EA producer who has worked on series like Assassin’s Creed and Star Wars Battlefront, will head its internal game development studio Stadia Games and Entertainment
The Stadia isn’t the only game streaming competition in town. Microsoft is tinkering with the xCloud, and Amazon is rumored to be working on a game streaming service as well. Only time will tell who will end up on top.
Watch the Stadia’s announcement trailer below.