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For those interested in trying out Google Stadia, the new streaming service, today Google held their first Stadia Connect to give out some details. Quick reminder: Stadia is the game streaming service powered by Debian Linux and Vulkan. It’s supposed to offer a “single click” experience with “no downloading required”.

On the subject of pricing: They will have a Stadia Pro subscription at $9.99/£8.99 a month which gives you up to 4K resolution with regular free games and discounts. They will also do Stadia Base with no monthly sub that will come "next year" limiting you to 1080p, both allowing you to buy games whenever you want.

However, it seems only those who purchase the special Founders Edition will get access sometime in November. This includes first access to Stadia, a Chromecast Ultra, limited edition Stadia Controller, 3 months of Stadia Pro, a guest pass to give access to a friend and the Complete Edition of Destiny 2.

First set of games includes: Baldur’s Gate III (Larian Studios) was newly announced - Trailer, Ghost Recon Breakpoint, Gylt, Get Packed, The Division 2, Destiny 2, DOOM Eternal, Football Manager 2020, GRID, Metro Exodus, The Elder Scrolls Online, Assassin's Creed Odyssey, Tomb Raider Trilogy, Borderlands 3 and more.

A pretty interesting line-up and there’s more they’re going to announce later, that’s just all they’re teasing for now. They also reiterated wide support for different game pads, not just their own.

You can see the video here:

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If you want to play at 1080p, Google are saying you will need a 20Mbps connection. That actually seems quite low, but even so the bandwidth use that will come along with it will likely be massive. If your connection is a bit wobbly, Stadia will keep your progress for "several minutes".

As for availability, they're launching in Belgium, Canada, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Netherlands, Norway, Spain, Sweden, USA and the United Kingdom. They say more countries will come in 2020 too.

See more at the official Stadia website and their FAQ here.

I found it quite amusing that the video kept dying on me (seems for others too), after Google's recent outage it doesn't exactly fill me with confidence about buying AAA titles to stream them through Google's network.

I remain unconvinced by it, especially now we know we will be buying games as well and you're locked to 1080p unless you also pay a monthly subscription. Buying a game, to have no real access to it with Google controlling every part of it? I mentioned before I didn't particularly like the idea of even less ownership but with a Netflix-like subscription model it might have made more sense but not if you're still paying full price.

I will add more details as I look over it all.

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133 comments
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Maath 6 June 2019 at 7:21 pm UTC
It will be interesting to see if any of the games on this list which are already out but not available on Linux become available. For example Shadow of the Tomb Raider. The other two in this series are already available for Linux.
Salvatos 6 June 2019 at 7:28 pm UTC
QuoteThey will also do Stadia Base with no monthly sub that will come "next year" limiting you to 1080p, both allowing you to buy games whenever you want.
That's one step in the right direction for my use case, though I still don't see myself going for it.

That Baldur’s Gate III trailer looks intriguing. First, interesting to see Larian Studios is at the helm, though I'm not sure what that implies regarding Linux support. The first game took forever and they gave up on porting the second one. It also gives me very low expectations for the story aspect since DOS1 bored me like no other RPG ever did, not to mention how tedious I found their take on combat. Second, how the hell does one just turn into a mind flayer? Very pretty teaser, though.

Now Borderlands 3 being part of the first set of games is very interesting. Wasn't it supposed to be an Epic exclusive for 6 months?
Aeder 6 June 2019 at 7:30 pm UTC
wvstolzing
Ehvis
PatolaThat's weird, almost no Linux natives. Are all these games streaming from and running on Linux?

I suppose the correct answer would be that they're running on the "Stadia platform". Which may be Linux/Vulkan based. But it is not your desktop.

This raises a question in my mind. Compare the relationship between Stadia and desktop Linux, with the relationship between PS4 & Nintendo Switch to FreeBSD. The latter, of course, hold absolutely no promise for gaming on FreeBSD, not simply because FreeBSD isn't a popular desktop OS, but because the gamey-tech that runs on top of FreeBSD is a completely proprietary, totally locked-down affair. Stadia, by contrast, uses Vulkan -- and it SEEMS like there's no one like Sony or Nintendo locking down the 'gamey-tech' so the publishers can't publish their Debian/Vulkan ports elsewhere. Or is there? Like -- is it entirely up to Ubisoft et al. whether to release their Debian/Vulkan ports elsewhere? Is Google imposing any constraints in that regard?

Games released on Stadia use the Stadia SDK which according to Google "provides robust APIs for managing games, like saves, multiplayer modes, suspend/resume gameplay and more". So from the looks of it, Steamworks or some other solution could replace that part of the software with ease.
Brisse 6 June 2019 at 7:32 pm UTC
MaathIt will be interesting to see if any of the games on this list which are already out but not available on Linux become available. For example Shadow of the Tomb Raider. The other two in this series are already available for Linux.

We already know that Feral is porting SotTR so that's definitely coming, but there are many other games on the list that will be interesting to see such as Borderlands 3, Metro Exodus, Doom 2016, Doom Eternal, Baldur’s Gate III, Assassin's Creed Odyssey etc. Sadly, I don't have much hope since some of these have been out for years and we know Doom 2016 had an unreleased Linux build years ago. AC: Odyssey was part of Project Stream, the beta test of Stadia, so they had a working build since quite some time ago, yet it's never been released on Linux desktop. So far it's not looking good.


Last edited by Brisse on 6 June 2019 at 7:35 pm UTC
grumpytoad 6 June 2019 at 7:39 pm UTC
I guess the cost is offset by not needing expensive hardware to run these games - I guess that might make it worthwhile if your PC is a little old (like mine).
micha 6 June 2019 at 7:50 pm UTC
=) #JustPreOrdered
tmtvl 6 June 2019 at 8:16 pm UTC
Baldur's Gate 3?! BG3 already exists, and it's called Throne of Bhaal. There's no good way to continue the story, the mind flayers where not set up in any way to be a major threat, they are too low a challenge rating for a Bhaalspawn who embraced their heritage and became a deity, it makes no sense to continue their story, and nobody was asking for a third entry because the trilogy was complete!

Make it Baldur's Gate: Dark Alliance 3 if you really want to use the Baldur's Gate title, but don't just make a sequel for a finished story that isn't served by it.

This is like making a sequel to Legacy of Kain: Defiance. Nobody is asking for it, the story is complete, adding any more on to it wouldn't make any sense.

If you want to use the setting, just make a spin-off, don't just tack on an unnecessary sequel.

Oh, and boo google i guess.
rat2000 6 June 2019 at 8:20 pm UTC
Metro Exodus? Does this mean it will be on linux when it hits the steam stores next year ?
wintermute 6 June 2019 at 8:28 pm UTC
I'm reading through the footnotes on the Google Stadia page:

QuoteStadia Controller requires a Wi-Fi® network and a mobile device running Android 6.0, Marshmallow or later, or iOS 11 or later.

Does this mean it won't be possible to use the controller/stream games directly with/to a PC?
NoSt 6 June 2019 at 8:28 pm UTC
The only good thing about all this is the announcement of Baldur's Gate III.
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