Google changes Stadia to focus on cloud technology and partnerships, closes internal game studios

Google changes Stadia to focus on cloud technology and partnerships, closes internal game studios
Image via Google

Both studios will be closed and Stadia will now focus on the platform's technical infrastructure and tools.

Google is restructuring its approach to the Stadia game streaming platform, expanding support and collaboration efforts with game developers and publishers, while reducing internal development, the company announced today.

The company hoped that Stadia would impact the gaming scene by providing a platform that would allow users to stream games on computers, tablets, and phones that did not necessarily meet the technical requirements for certain titles. But now, Google is changing the Stadia service to focus on third-party technology and content.

"In 2021 we will expand our efforts to help game developers and publishers take advantage of our platform technology and deliver games directly to their players," said Stadia Vice President and Manager Phil Harrison. “We see an important opportunity to work with partners looking for a gaming solution based on the advanced technical infrastructure and tools of the Stadia platform. We believe this is the best way to make Stadia a long-term sustainable company that will help the industry grow. "

Google will shut down its two in-house game studios without teams in Montreal or Los Angeles releasing a single game, according to Kotaku. This decision will affect nearly 150 developers, although Google is reportedly looking to redistribute those employees within the company.

When Stadia launched in 2019, Google brought in talented developers from across the industry to create games for the platform, many of whom will likely leave the company to look for work elsewhere. Former Ubisoft and EA producer Jade Raymond, who served as Vice President and CEO of Stadia Games, has already decided to pursue other opportunities.

Going forward, Google will continue to support Stadia as a service, both at the entry-level and in its $ 10 monthly subscription to Stadia Pro. Games will continue to come to the platform, but the company "will not invest more in bringing exclusive content from our internal development team. "

The Google post said that any "short-term planned games" already in development could be released in the future.

Rather than working internally to create and publish exclusive content, the Stadia team will seek new partnerships focused on using the service's "advanced technical infrastructure and platform tools" to deliver games directly to gamers.

"We are committed to the future of cloud gaming and will continue to do our part to drive this industry forward," said Harrison. "Our goal remains to create the best possible platform for gamers and technology for our partners and to bring these experiences to life for people around the world."

Both Microsoft and Amazon have their own cloud streaming options with Xbox xCloud and Amazon Luna, which means Google might have wanted to pull out before investing even more in a field that is becoming more competitive.


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