Stadia was Google’s in-house game development group, intended to make game streaming mainstream. Like many other things Google attempts, they found out that it’s significantly harder than they imagined initially.
What good is a streaming game service that has no games?
UPDATE: Google has asked me to make sure you know that it’s Stadia Games & Entertainment, the in-house games studio, that’s being closed. Streaming will still work for the games that you already have access to.
“What does this mean if you’re a current or future Stadia gamer? You can continue playing all your games on Stadia and Stadia Pro, and we’ll continue to bring new titles from third parties to the platform. We’re committed to the future of cloud gaming, and will continue to do our part to drive this industry forward. Our goal remains focused on creating the best possible platform for gamers and technology for our partners, bringing these experiences to life for people everywhere.“
What that means is, anything that was already set to release probably will, and any games made with third party game studios may release.
Phil Harrison, a vice president at Google and general manager for Stadia, writes, “Creating best-in-class games from the ground up takes many years and significant investment, and the cost is going up exponentially,”
They may or may not partner with other game studios to try and keep the streaming tech going, but it doesn’t look good, when they’ve declared their own dev efforts for games are ending.
This goes in the pantheon of things Google has killed:
- Chrome web apps
- Google Hangouts
- Loon (balloon-based Internet)
- App Maker
- Google Cloud Print
- Play Music
- Nest Secure
- Hangouts on Air
- and way, way more.
Basically, Google gives up all the time. It doesn’t matter if something was a core user functionality, or that people depended on it, they just give up. Like Google Fiber, where no more cities are being added: they discovered that the laying of fiber optics never gets cheaper, easier, or scales when you add more cities.