So Google’s Stadia got announced, and it was… surprisingly far beneath my expectations. Also reading through the announcement details, I felt very like Lando Calrissian, hence the thread title.
What we know:
Initial price: £119 (so not actually THAT much cheaper than a real console)
Mandatory subscription to use it for some period after that of £8.99/month (3 months included with initial price)
Games included with sub: Destiny 2. Yes only Destiny 2, which is going F2P. There will apparently be “more games later”, but every single other game announced for the Stadia is buy-to-play.
Price of buy-to-play games: No indication whatsoever.
EDIT: They did actually indicate it - I missed it - THE SAME PRICE AS OTHER PLATFORMS! So yeah, they want you to pay $60 for a game that you can only play for as long as they feel like letting you, and you don’t even have the software so you can’t even potentially crack it or whatever! GREAT! I love paying several times the actual value of things too! Even fucking Amazon understands that a digital version of a movie does not have the same value as a Blu-Ray of the same.
Required Mbps: 35/1 for 4k, 20/1 for 1080p, 10/1 for 720p.
At some point in 2020 you will be able to get the same controller, except a different colour, for £59, and the sub will no longer be mandatory (but you won’t get any free games and can only do up to 1080p/stereo (instead of 5.1) if you don’t pay £8.99/month).
You also can’t use it with any other Google devices, despite them saying you could, not at launch, anyway, you have to use the included Chromecast. This kind of blows up the whole “You don’t need any other devices! It’ll connect straight to your smart-TV and router!” stuff they were saying previously.
Honestly it seems like kind of shit deal. Unless the prices of the buy-to-play games are hilariously low, which seems unlikely, I can’t really see who they’re targeting here. And the idea that it’s acceptable to launch an £8.99/month (albeit imaginary for the first three months) service with the only free gaming being Destiny 2 (hardly a “hot property” - it’s a step down from Division 2 but a step above Anthem, I guess) is kind of mind-boggling.
As bonus, there have been some demented comments from the guy in charge of the Stadia in interviews, with him saying he hoped everyone threw out all their existing gaming hardware (?!) because they could enjoy gaming “administration-free” (because Google products definitely never need patching, right?), and when questioned on Google’s actual commitment to the product, he has answered “That’s a good question!” then given completely evasive non-answers like “Look at all the companies we have on board!” and “We spent a lot of money on this!”. Holy shit Google, you know literally every console that vanished without a trace and indeed a number of actual Google products since discontinued or niche-ified said similar things, right? Oh and he specifically said we should NOT expect a “Netflix of games”, and that they want you to buy these games (“buy” as in “rent for as long as Google can be bothered to keep this notably expensive service going”) instead. The subscription is way more expensive and seems to offer way less than PSN/Xbox Live subs, I note (which have several free games to keep each month).
May include some links later.