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Stadia’s Launch Lineup is Pretty Underwhelming

Stadia’s launch lineup has just been announced, and honestly it doesn’t make me eager to get on board with Google’s game streaming service.

Google Stadia will be launching next week on November 19th, but early adopters will only have a dozen games to choose from on release day.

Those 12 games include only one measly exclusive and eleven old faces that most people serious about gaming will have already played. Here’s the full list:

  • Destiny 2: The Collection
  • Kine
  • Gylt
  • Red Dead Redemption 2
  • Thumper
  • Tomb Raider Definitive Edition
  • Rise of the Tomb Raider
  • Shadow of the Tomb Raider Definitive Edition
  • Mortal Kombat 11
  • Assassin’s Creed Odyssey
  • Just Dance 2020
  • Samurai Shodown

Gylt, the aforementioned sole Stadia exclusive from Tequila Works, does look relatively interesting; but how exactly are the less fresh games such as Assassin’s Creed Oddyssey and Destiny 2 meant to entice people to the platform?

Let’s be real: anyone interested in playing those games has already played them. Some people have made the argument that Stadia is aimed at a slightly more casual audience who don’t want to spend hundreds of pounds on a dedicated gaming console or gaming PC, but I don’t see that kind of person being an early adopter of any service such as this.

There are 14 more games planned to be added before the end of 2019, but the same problem applies, with Darksiders Genesis being the only other brand new title to be dropping onto Stadia in the year of its launch. Here are the additional games coming this year:

  • Borderlands 3
  • Attack on Titan 2 Final Battle
  • Darksiders Genesis
  • Dragon Ball Xenoverse 2
  • Farming Simulator 19
  • Final Fantasy XV
  • Football Manager 2020
  • NBA 2K20
  • Rage 2
  • Trial Rising
  • Wolfenstein: Youngblood
  • Ghost Recon: Breakpoint
  • Grid
  • Metro Exodus

The game lineup isn’t the only disappointing aspect of the Stadia’s launch. The main USP of the service – the ability to stream games anywhere across a range of devices – will probably not give you quite the sense of freedom that you imagined. Mobile streaming will (initially at least) only be available on Google’s Pixel phones and streaming to PC might not be available at launch at all, with information about compatible devices being vary vague. Not to mention the high-speed internet connection required to stream games in the first place will restrict when and where you can play.

This shaky launch should be worrying to those who have already jumped on board with Stadia, because with a lack of physical purchases, if the streaming service fails then customers might end up losing access to games they paid good money for. You might think that sounds unlikely, but it wouldn’t be the first of Google’s many services to fade into nothing.

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