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We have more interesting news to share this morning about updates surrounding Google Stadia, the game streaming service.

Firstly, engineer Justin Uberti who helped to create WebRTC and Google Duo has announced they've moved onto leading the Google Stadia engineering team. Google certainly need all the help they can get building their gaming platform, after such a rough launch. Uberti also mentioned that they will be hiring for Stadia in Seattle/Kirkland (USA) so get in touch if working on cloud gaming sounds like your thing.

Google have also finally put the Stadia store online in the browser, it's no longer totally locked to the mobile app. This was one of the pain points of the early launch, although you likely still need to actually have a Stadia account and a Chromium-based browser to even access it.


As you can see from the above shot Darksiders Genesis is also a brand new release, which came with same-day Stadia support so anyone who is currently in can play Darksiders Genesis on Linux with Stadia.

However, curiously, Darksiders Genesis actually costs more on Stadia than it does on other stores like Steam. On Stadia it's £34.99, on Steam it's £26.99. This highlights another big problem Stadia has, the pricing is already not competitive with other leading stores. Considering you get no local copy, it feels thoroughly wrong that it costs more.

On the brighter side of game news, the complete Destiny 2 pack is going to remain on Stadia Pro "for the foreseeable future" and it sounds like there's no current plan to remove it. Meaning anyone signing up to Stadia Pro next year when it's open to everyone, should be able to grab the whole bundle. Additionally, those who opt for Destiny 2 on Stadia will get quite literally everything (all seasons, raids, campaigns and so on) released for it through Summer 2020. Confirmed here under "Accessing Destiny 2".

If you're interested in seeing how Stadia runs on Linux, we have a YouTube VOD up on our channel from a recent livestream. You can also see my own initial impressions here. We've yet to face any major problems with it. Our livestreamer is certainly enjoying the experience of being able to play even more top games on Linux.

Lastly, if you wish to try out Stadia, Google have announced they're doing a few pop-up locations for people to come along and try it in: Los Angeles USA (Dec 11), London UK (Dec 11) and Paris France (Dec 13), more info on that here.

Article taken from GamingOnLinux.com.
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mirv 8 December 2019 at 10:28 pm UTC
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ShmerlI don't think anyone assesses it wrongly. It's just another annoying thing from Google, who do this every time they deal with Linux. From Android (hello Surface flinger + bionic, where is Wayland + glibc?), to ChromeOS (hello some weird hybrid, where is normal desktop Linux stack?).

Now Stadia can be added to the list. I.e. hello backend targeted Linux releases, where is the benefit for proper desktop ones?

It's as if Google have this motto: "use Linux for our projects, but make sure to screw Linux users while doing it".

I think you're missing my point.

When did Google ever show interest in doing anything different? When did they say they would develop "proper desktop" anything? They didn't. I get that it's not desirable, but Google aren't in doing anything to help users - but neither are they doing anything to get in the way.

Oh, and wayland + glibc, and a desktop interface in general, is really not designed for the requirements of mobile devices. I suppose modern devices might not have many issues, but at the time of Android being released....no, not at all.

That aside, Google's work on Stadia does bring the massive benefit of game developer experience with Vulkan. That's really critical to have. There's nothing stopping developers themselves from using that on Windows (which would then make wine's job easier), or releasing a GNU/Linux desktop version of their game. There's nothing stopping Valve from encouraging that more. There's nothing stopping Canonical from creating a game support system and making Ubuntu even more the default target. Nothing stopping Red Hat from doing the same. Or....you know....anyone.
Shmerl 8 December 2019 at 10:47 pm UTC
mirvOh, and wayland + glibc, and a desktop interface in general, is really not designed for the requirements of mobile devices.

That's bunk. Sailfish uses it for mobile devices just fine. Wayland protocol is very explicitly designed to be versatile and allow any kind of interface interactions, from desktops to kiosks and transport cockpit interfaces. Android developers could adopt Wayland once it became well established, but they never cared about synergy with desktop Linux stack, so they never did anything about it. And that was my point above about Google in general.

mirvThat aside, Google's work on Stadia does bring the massive benefit of game developer experience with Vulkan.

That's why Aaron's description fits here well. Best friend because it helps Vulkan adoption and Linux expertise. Worst enemy, because such developers still don't care about us, Linux users.


Last edited by Shmerl on 8 December 2019 at 10:50 pm UTC
mirv 8 December 2019 at 11:06 pm UTC
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Shmerl
mirvOh, and wayland + glibc, and a desktop interface in general, is really not designed for the requirements of mobile devices.

That's bunk. Sailfish uses it for mobile devices just fine. Wayland is very explicitly designed to be versatile and allow any kind of interface interactions, from desktops to kiosks and transport cockpit interfaces. Android developers could adopt Wayland once it became well established, but they never cared about synergy with desktop Linux stack, so they never did anything about it. And that was my point above about Google in general.
Which is exactly why I said at the time Android was released. Once established and in use across millions of devices, nobody is going to suddenly switch to Wayland "just because". Samsung have tried (i.e Tizen), but such a change isn't like on desktop. Google can't force a switch to Wayland and have everything work for everybody. It's only even recently that enough capable hardware is of dominant use to consider future Android versions to have Vulkan as mandatory.
So no, it's not an easy task to switch to Wayland for Android.

Quote
mirvThat aside, Google's work on Stadia does bring the massive benefit of game developer experience with Vulkan.

That's why Aaron's description fits here well. Best friend because it helps Vulkan adoption and Linux expertise. Worst enemy, because such developers still don't care about us, Linux users.

And that's true. Why would they change that opinion? That's really the crux of the matter. I can write why they haven't, but have no answers that would effect change.
Shmerl 8 December 2019 at 11:35 pm UTC
mirvSo no, it's not an easy task to switch to Wayland for Android.

Not very easy, but pretty doable for someone like Google. I.e. turn Surface Flinger into proper Wayland compositor, problem solved. All this is not about technical difficulties, but about general care to avoid creating rifts and rather aiming for synergy. Google are doing a very poor job at this, likely because they very rarely care.


Last edited by Shmerl on 8 December 2019 at 11:36 pm UTC
Maath 9 December 2019 at 5:16 pm UTC
Liam Dawe
Maath
Liam Dawe
NanobangI'm a bit confused about the nature of Stadia. Is there more to it for Linux gamers than just using Linux at Google's end? If there isn't, it's fine with me---please don't think I'm trying to knock coverage of it here. I'm just feeling an excitement around Stadia here that I'm not feeling myself, so I figure I must have missed something along the way.
No, it's not just because it uses Linux on Google's servers, the entire point is that it's yet another option to play popular titles on Linux. Especially true for multiplayer titles (like Destiny 2). If it was just server stuff, we wouldn't cover it past their initial announcement. We're all about Linux + Gaming of course ;)

I see it on a comparable level to Steam Play at the very least. In comparison to Steam Play though, games on Stadia should "just work" where as Steam Play is a gamble unless you specifically seek-out titles that others have already been the guinea pig for to let you know if it works at all.

Well, then I guess technically playing games in a Windows VM running in Linux is playing games on Linux.
I'm sure you're trying to make a point here, but it's not sticking. Windows VM is just playing on Windows. Stadia is not. It's fully Linux. You're on Linux, playing a game through the browser that's also being run from Linux. Games on Stadia need to be ported to Linux/Vulkan, so there's developers going to be getting more Linux porting knowledge at the same time.

Perhaps your point was more that you dislike Stadia coverage here? If that's the case, I'm not bothered. I write about what I want and others may be interested to know - it's how GOL has always and always will be run. Gaming on Linux, not "game on Linux this one specific way" ;)

I was simply challenging your statement, "...the entire point is that it's yet another option to play popular titles on Linux." The paragraph that statement comes from seems to be downplaying the fact that Stadia is running Linux on the back end. Then your reply to me seems to be up-playing the fact that Stadia is running Linux on the back end.

I don't have any problems with Stadia coverage here. One could also say mobile gaming is gaming on Linux. It's your site, of course you'll run it however you like. Sometimes justifications aren't necessary.
etonbears 9 December 2019 at 5:30 pm UTC
ShmerlIf it's such a standard stack, then releasing proper desktop version after all the Stadia work should be trivial.

I partially blame Google, for being "the best friend and the worst enemy" of Linux, like Aaron Seigo put it a while ago about Android. Same applies here. Google could do a lot more to help Linux gaming through Stadia, but they don't care.

At the moment it is a fairly standard Linux stack, but the intention is to use the server side heavily and with innovation going forward. So from their perspective, Linux gaming means using Stadia.
Liam Dawe 9 December 2019 at 6:51 pm UTC
MaathI was simply challenging your statement, "...the entire point is that it's yet another option to play popular titles on Linux." The paragraph that statement comes from seems to be downplaying the fact that Stadia is running Linux on the back end. Then your reply to me seems to be up-playing the fact that Stadia is running Linux on the back end.

I don't have any problems with Stadia coverage here. One could also say mobile gaming is gaming on Linux. It's your site, of course you'll run it however you like. Sometimes justifications aren't necessary.
Seems more then you misunderstood my previous comments. I was not downplaying anything about Stadia being Linux on the back end. I was trying making a point: if that is all it was, it would not be a fit for "Gaming On Linux" the website, the point is that the service works to play games on a Linux desktop/notebook making it relevant.
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