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Here's a bit of interesting industry news for you on this fine Monday afternoon. Alen Ladavac, who helped to co-found the Serious Sam and Talos Principle developer Croteam has moved onto game streaming.

Announcing their change on Twitter, which links to a post on LinkedIn, Ladavac wrote about how they were making games since the age of the Floppy disk but they're moving on:

[…] With a heavy heart, I've parted ways with my dear friends and colleagues at Croteam. I love you all, guys and girls, and I will never forget all the beautiful years I spent with you and fantastic things we've created. I'm super excited to announce that I'm starting at Google München, joining the awesome Stadia team to work on finally bringing gaming into the cloud. What was once deemed impossible, now is the reality - and I'm grateful for a chance to contribute to this landmark undertaking.

Considering their experience shipping games, along with helping to get games updated with Vulkan it's not a hugely surprising move. Probably a bit of a blow to Croteam though, as they're working on Serious Sam 4: Planet Badass which has no current release date set.

In other related Stadia news, Red Dead Redemption 2 has been confirmed at launch now as well. This is a huge bit of news, as it was previously only speculated that it was coming to PC but it's now confirmed for Stadia (as well as Steam for Windows).

Stadia is set to launch in November 2019, for those who put some cash up front to get the Stadia Founder's Edition. However, this edition is sold out in certain regions, with it being replaced with a Premier Edition which includes a plain White gamepad instead of the special Night Blue version.

It will be interesting to see how Stadia can capture the market. Especially since the software stack is using Debian Linux, the Vulkan API and it will work on any computer that can access a Chrome browser. Compared to other solutions which require another dedicated application, the barrier for entry at least when talking software is low. This will open up a lot more AAA gaming to be played on Linux, which is why we're keeping a close eye on it.

A hot topic though, considering how it's basically the ultimate form of gaming DRM. You don't technically own anything, the game never really touches your PC and you need to be online to play anything. Input latency and bandwidth use are big issues for some too. We've secured a copy of the Stadia Founder's Edition to cover sometime around the release for GamingOnLinux, let's wait and see if it can win us over.

Will you be trying it out? We've also opened a new dedicated forum for all game streaming topics including Stadia, Steam Remote Play and anything else.

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Shmerl 7 October 2019 at 2:59 pm UTC
ShmerlI.e. as the first outcome, we might see more developers using Vulkan on Windows due to them already using it for Stadia.

That is why it is so important that developers use AMDVLK instead of RADV.

Why is it important? Games shouldn't rely on something so specific most of the time.
Liam Dawe 7 October 2019 at 3:03 pm UTC
Liam Dawe
ShabbyXIronically, the disadvantage of Linux with Stadia is that chrome doesn't support hardware acceleration in video decoding, so Linux will have a (slightly) higher latency than windows...
What's the latest on this, I'm a bit out of touch since I use Firefox.

The latest is what I just said?
*sigh* let me be a lot more specific then: What is the latest on getting the code accepted into Chromium/Chrome to enable it the same as it is on Windows?
Alm888 7 October 2019 at 3:10 pm UTC
QuoteWill you be trying it out?
Will I?
Well, I am not even allowed to (remember, only US and some selected few countries are elegible).
Liam Dawe 7 October 2019 at 3:16 pm UTC
QuoteWill you be trying it out?
Will I?
Well, I am not even allowed to (remember, only US and some selected few countries are elegible).
As I understand it, next year they will be expanding the regions so you might eventually I guess.
F.Ultra 7 October 2019 at 3:29 pm UTC
JoneK... DRM is the correct word here.. They won't allow the Linux versions to leak to the public, I mean Doom has an Linux executable somewhere inside ID, they didn't release it...

I think it's the same kind of pipe dream that Streaming games from Finland to Sweden and then back to Finland, makes for great low latency experience.. Only way to bring ping down is to actually fast track route all Stadia packets and get rid of bad last mile dsl cable and 4g, even 5g is slow. 9ms on last mile is too much. oh and +40ms for the packet to travel from Finland to Sweden and then back to Finland.

Yes all Google Hamina Data center traffic travels this way... Well.. maybe they will make the game data centers to Sweden..

Latency between Finland and Sweden should be well below 40ms and trying out i Actually have 41ms on average round trip latency between my 4G mobile wifi here in western Sweden (Göteborg) and the Hamina center in Finland.
Alm888 7 October 2019 at 3:40 pm UTC
ZlopezI think this situation is slowly changing after AMD started to officially support Open Source drivers.
I was a NVIDIA guy a few years back, but now I'm pretty happy with AMD Radeon RX 590 :-)
Ahh, come on! nVidia has great Vulkan drivers and has been supporting Linux since who knows when (I switched from "Windows XP" in 2008 and even then the drivers were top-notch!). Unlike ATi/AMD which can not even provide a day-1 support for the shiny "RX5700" cards.
But no, we must stay vigilant! We must continue our bashing on one of the leading graphics solutions companies because it is not open-source enough.
I am speaking as the one pretty happy owning a nVidia GeForce GTX 1660Ti :-)
Liam Dawe
QuoteWill you be trying it out?
Will I?
Well, I am not even allowed to (remember, only US and some selected few countries are elegible).
As I understand it, next year they will be expanding the regions so you might eventually I guess.
Well, to be honest, I myself is a firm anti-DRM fighter, not even willing to tolerate Steam™, let alone this DRM_From_Hell-incarnation.
And besides, technically speaking, I share the "input lag" skepticism. May be it will be tolerable in some regions, but it will definitely not cover the whole "PC Marketshare".

After all, many have tried the "streaming service" model, many have failed. And what makes Google any different? A big name? Hardly sufficient, IMO.

Yet, it will be interesting to watch how this latest attempt will disrupt the "status quo" (with Vulkan being behind all of this).

Last edited by Alm888 on 8 October 2019 at 1:21 pm UTC
PublicNuisance 7 October 2019 at 4:43 pm UTC
If this departure messes with future native Linux versions of their games I will be mad.
Shaolu 7 October 2019 at 5:07 pm UTC
I just hope this doesn't kill any potential for a Talos Principle 2
Vardamir 7 October 2019 at 5:10 pm UTC
I have ordered the Founders edition too. Mainly because I'm curious to see if this works (and its a pretty good deal, with the Chromecast and the fancy controller).

When we're talking about the consequences, Stadia will have on "Desktop gaming", I would argue, that offline gaming will die anyways, sooner or later. Developers/publishers don't want a second hand market for their games, therefore streaming is perfect for them (plus no anti-cheat necessary).

From a technical point of view: Why would any developer still bother with Win32-API/DirectX, if they a) don't want offline games anyways, and b) Vulkan exists for Windows as well.

For the midterm, this will mean: More titles will use "Linux-API", but will get released mainly for Windows, but run pretty good in a Proton environment.

Microsoft, oth, must support Vulkan for XBox someday, if they still want developers to port their games to XBox (everything else is Vulkan)
TimeFreeze 7 October 2019 at 5:19 pm UTC
Nope. Still zero interest in Streaming Services.
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