Google made a big announcement today about the future of Google Stadia, their game streaming service. Back when they first started going public with Stadia, they intended to make some exclusive content and games that’d be significant selling points for the Google Stadia service. Today they announced that they’re not going to do that anymore.
It would appear that Google’s discovered that putting effort into developing their own exclusive games just… isn’t worth the work. Especially when they’re capable of major success in doing what they do best – running other people’s games. They went so far as to name-check Cyberpunk 2077, one of the most disastrous launches in recent memory – as a proof-of-concept for their ability to launch games that work at least as good – if not BETTER – than they do anywhere else.
“With the recent successful launch of Cyberpunk 2077 on Stadia, gameplay on all types of devices, including iOS, growing our slate of YouTube integrations, and our global expansions, it’s clear that Stadia’s technology has been proven and works at scale,” wrote Phil Harrison, Vice President and GM, Google Stadia.
Google announced that “given our focus on building on the proven technology of Stadia as well as deepening our business partnerships, we’ve decided that we will not be investing further in bringing exclusive content from our internal development team SG&E.” They added that this was “beyond any near-term planned games.” That might mean there are some games in the pipeline, but that beyond that, nothing.
It would appear that just ONE person is leaving Google as a result of this decision – developer Jade Raymond. Per Harrison, the rest of the SG&E “will be moving on to new roles” – though it’s not clear if that means inside or outside of the organization.
For the Stadia gamer today, this move means… very little. If you were looking forward to games developed by Google for Google, this means you might need to change your expectations. Otherwise, it’s all about those games made by studios outside of Google proper.