38 votes

Stadia is shutting down

44 comments

  1. MimicSquid
    Link
    The key point: This is the ideal response. I only ever bought a couple things from Stadia, but I'm glad I'll get my money back, and it'll mean I can repurchase on Steam if I care about the games...

    The key point:

    We will be offering refunds for all Stadia hardware purchases (Stadia Controller, Founders Edition, Premiere Edition, and Play and Watch with Google TV packages) made through the Google Store and software transactions (games and add-on purchases) through the Stadia store. Stadia Pro subscriptions are not eligible for refund, however you will be able to continue playing your games in Pro without further charges until the final wind down date.

    We are working through this process now and will keep this article updated as we define the process for each of the countries and different situations. Our intent is to have the majority of refunds processed back to the original payment by January 18, 2023.

    This is the ideal response. I only ever bought a couple things from Stadia, but I'm glad I'll get my money back, and it'll mean I can repurchase on Steam if I care about the games enough to want to mod/replay them.

    19 votes
  2. [9]
    skybrian
    Link
    The usual line is that this once again shows that Google is unreliable, but a contrarian take would be that they tried for four years (since beta launch) to make it work, despite little indication...

    The usual line is that this once again shows that Google is unreliable, but a contrarian take would be that they tried for four years (since beta launch) to make it work, despite little indication that it was getting traction. That seems like fairly persistent support for a project that was failing?

    So what's the right amount of support? How long do other companies support failing products?

    14 votes
    1. lou
      Link Parent
      For much of this 4 years they didn't really try all that much.

      For much of this 4 years they didn't really try all that much.

      16 votes
    2. [3]
      Cycloneblaze
      Link Parent
      I think the pricing model (pay for a subscription and then also buy the games) put a lot of people off, myself included, who might otherwise have given it a try. But they never changed that -...

      I think the pricing model (pay for a subscription and then also buy the games) put a lot of people off, myself included, who might otherwise have given it a try. But they never changed that - despite that they were just ploughing money into the service to get the games and will also be spending untold millions on refunds now.

      But also, many of the people who might have been early adopters were certainly warned away by Google's history of killing products. I don't think anybody assumed this (pretty laudable) refund scheme would be in place when Stadia did die (and for many it was a when), so they'd just have sunk a bunch of money into something they did not own and would lose after not too long. Stadia was a victim of Google's reputation before it even launched, so, maybe Google should have seen this coming! I vainly hope that this will get it through to them: when your business is running services, not releasing products, people need to be able to trust that you will actually keep offering the service, otherwise you may as well not launch it.

      7 votes
      1. [2]
        Wes
        Link Parent
        But it wasn't, was it? You paid for the games outright, and could play them for the life of the service. The subscription was separate and included monthly free games, as well as a higher...

        I think the pricing model (pay for a subscription and then also buy the games) put a lot of people off, myself included

        But it wasn't, was it? You paid for the games outright, and could play them for the life of the service. The subscription was separate and included monthly free games, as well as a higher streaming quality. It's no different than Xbox Live Gold or PlayStation Plus, except those also limit online play in some situations.

        4 votes
        1. Cycloneblaze
          Link Parent
          Seems you're right! I had a mistaken impression then - I think I was thinking of Artefact which cost money to buy but also ongoing costs to buy new card packs. I think it still put me off but hey,...

          Seems you're right! I had a mistaken impression then - I think I was thinking of Artefact which cost money to buy but also ongoing costs to buy new card packs. I think it still put me off but hey, that's on me for not being informed.

          3 votes
    3. [4]
      babypuncher
      Link Parent
      I think the threshold is different depending on whether the service in question was free or paid. Having something you invested real money in just disappear overnight stings a lot more than if it...

      I think the threshold is different depending on whether the service in question was free or paid.

      Having something you invested real money in just disappear overnight stings a lot more than if it were some free service with lots of free or cheap competitors.

      2 votes
      1. [3]
        MimicSquid
        Link Parent
        Speaking as someone who invested real money in it and is getting their money back, it doesn't sting at all.

        Speaking as someone who invested real money in it and is getting their money back, it doesn't sting at all.

        5 votes
        1. [2]
          babypuncher
          Link Parent
          But it sure would have if Google didn't go the extra mile and take a massive hit to refund you all that money

          But it sure would have if Google didn't go the extra mile and take a massive hit to refund you all that money

          3 votes
          1. MimicSquid
            Link Parent
            I'm pretty sure Google doesn't want to be the test case for a class action lawsuit on the topic of deprived property due to the service shutting down, and they absolutely would be if they didn't...

            I'm pretty sure Google doesn't want to be the test case for a class action lawsuit on the topic of deprived property due to the service shutting down, and they absolutely would be if they didn't do anything about it.

            4 votes
  3. archevel
    Link
    I don't think anyone should be super surprised by this. Google has a history of this with a bunch of different products. I like the concept of cloud gaming (i.e. not having to own a particular...

    I don't think anyone should be super surprised by this. Google has a history of this with a bunch of different products. I like the concept of cloud gaming (i.e. not having to own a particular hardware), but then I also like owning the games I play, not just rent(?) them.

    12 votes
  4. [3]
    kfwyre
    Link
    Stadia always gave me over-before-it-started vibes, but I know we had some users here who liked it. Sad day for them. Outside of Stadia, what does the streaming gaming landscape look like at the...

    Stadia always gave me over-before-it-started vibes, but I know we had some users here who liked it. Sad day for them.

    Outside of Stadia, what does the streaming gaming landscape look like at the moment?

    10 votes
    1. [2]
      moocow1452
      Link Parent
      The major tentpoles are Nvidia GeForce Now, which ties into your existing game libraries, Microsoft Xbox Cloud, which ties into Game Pass, and Amazon's Luna, which ties into Prime. Having a cloud...

      The major tentpoles are Nvidia GeForce Now, which ties into your existing game libraries, Microsoft Xbox Cloud, which ties into Game Pass, and Amazon's Luna, which ties into Prime. Having a cloud gaming system without some games that are built in and that isn't a value add to something else seems to have put Stadia into a losing position.

      7 votes
      1. hamstergeddon
        Link Parent
        I was a big fan of Shadow while I needed it. Basically gave you a full-blown windows VM you could remote into and game off of. I had previously tried GeForce Now, but the big issue there was that...

        I was a big fan of Shadow while I needed it. Basically gave you a full-blown windows VM you could remote into and game off of. I had previously tried GeForce Now, but the big issue there was that modding games that didn't use the steam workshop was a major PITA. For example, Farming Sim 2022 has an in-game mod manager, but since nothing that wasn't "in the cloud" persisted between game sessions you had to re-download/enable every single mod you wanted every time you played the game.

        But both were a good option for me for a time because I had a very old budget GPU in my gaming rig and I couldn't play anything new at acceptable graphics levels. When GPU prices were insane it was much cheaper to pay a monthly subscription to a service than pay way too much for a GPU.

        3 votes
  5. [6]
    freddy
    Link
    Here's a list of other things that Google just abandonned: Killed by Google

    Here's a list of other things that Google just abandonned: Killed by Google

    9 votes
    1. [5]
      Fiachra
      Link Parent
      The most interesting prediction of the future I ever saw was YouTuber Tom Scott a year ago, when he predicted that by 2031 Google will have scrubbed YouTube from the internet the same way they've...

      The most interesting prediction of the future I ever saw was YouTuber Tom Scott a year ago, when he predicted that by 2031 Google will have scrubbed YouTube from the internet the same way they've disappeared so many other projects that weren't making money.

      1. [4]
        Grzmot
        Link Parent
        It's a strange prediction considering we know that Youtube is at the very least, breaking even. Also if it did disappear, it's too much of a vacuum to fill. No one will try to make a competitor;...

        It's a strange prediction considering we know that Youtube is at the very least, breaking even. Also if it did disappear, it's too much of a vacuum to fill. No one will try to make a competitor; it's too expensive. But a successor? The Amazons and Microsofts of the world would absolutely jump on that.

        3 votes
        1. teaearlgraycold
          (edited )
          Link Parent
          Also consider the asset YouTube is to a company like Google. I talked with someone who worked on Stadia a few months ago about how they mapped out what homes get routed to which datacenters. You...

          Also consider the asset YouTube is to a company like Google. I talked with someone who worked on Stadia a few months ago about how they mapped out what homes get routed to which datacenters. You want to minimize latency for optimal gaming. They actually used YouTube’s latency data to build a limited map of the internet. So, thanks to YouTube, Google has a map of datacenter-to-zipcode latency for most of the world.

          7 votes
        2. nothis
          Link Parent
          It feels weird but I keep reminding myself that the majority of services on the internet have an expiration date. There was myspace before facebook. And facebook monthly active users seem to be...

          It feels weird but I keep reminding myself that the majority of services on the internet have an expiration date. There was myspace before facebook. And facebook monthly active users seem to be peaking with younger people finding alternatives. My circle of friends switched from WhatsApp to Signal like 3 years ago, it was a non-event, it's the exact same app, basically. Twitter MAU seems to have peaked in 2015 (which is kinda weird). There was search before google and I switched to duckduckgo about 2 years ago... not missing google one bit. Oddly enough, the "stickiest" service I actually use is email, so I'm still kinda stuck with Gmail despite looking for alternatives.

          So while youtube seems more entrenched in internet video culture, it's absolutely replaceable. Big youtubers would find a way to transfer their content, some obscure stuff might go missing but that's a small price to pay to break a monopoly. If youtube's popularity truly collapses, I actually don't see Microsoft or Amazon filling that potential gap but some smaller site that takes a risk none of the big players are willing to take. Something none of us would expect.

          I don't personally see it happening, but 10 years from now, a lot of change is possible.

          4 votes
        3. Fiachra
          Link Parent
          The crux of the prediction was that all the stuff currently on YouTube, all sorts of videos that are influential to online subcultures would just go up in smoke one day, en masse. It's not the...

          The crux of the prediction was that all the stuff currently on YouTube, all sorts of videos that are influential to online subcultures would just go up in smoke one day, en masse. It's not the platform that's important but the sort of cultural archive it's become.

  6. ntngps
    Link
    My friends and I had a betting pool started in April 2021 on when they'd announce a shut down of Stadia. I didn't win :( But seriously, glad they're refunding everyone. That's the best way they...

    My friends and I had a betting pool started in April 2021 on when they'd announce a shut down of Stadia. I didn't win :(

    But seriously, glad they're refunding everyone. That's the best way they could have handled this. But that must be costing them a fortune too, on top of what they've already invested in this streaming tech.

    Google has a commitment problem, and it's costing them long term trust.

    7 votes
  7. [13]
    aditya
    Link
    Are any of the Stadia hardware products now essentially bricks? Refunds are good but this is still quite wasteful if yes.

    Are any of the Stadia hardware products now essentially bricks? Refunds are good but this is still quite wasteful if yes.

    4 votes
    1. [5]
      stu2b50
      Link Parent
      I think the only dedicated hardware (the "official" box was just a chromecast) was the controller, which you can use as a perfectly normal external controller on PCs.

      I think the only dedicated hardware (the "official" box was just a chromecast) was the controller, which you can use as a perfectly normal external controller on PCs.

      7 votes
      1. Saigot
        Link Parent
        Sort of. The controller worked with stadia via wifi. It has bluetooth as well, but It is only used for setting up the device, and can't currently be used for actual gaming (and I suspect it's not...

        Sort of. The controller worked with stadia via wifi. It has bluetooth as well, but It is only used for setting up the device, and can't currently be used for actual gaming (and I suspect it's not a good enough bluetooth module to support low latency gaming). So the controller functionally can only be used wired. I personally prefer using a wired controller, but I suspect most of the people who are likely to buy stadia do not.

        3 votes
      2. [3]
        aditya
        Link Parent
        Nice, well looks like Google handled this as best as they could then.

        Nice, well looks like Google handled this as best as they could then.

        2 votes
        1. [2]
          LukeZaz
          Link Parent
          I mean, rumor has it that the employees didn't know squat until it was announced to everybody all at once, and that a fair chunk of them aren't keeping their jobs. So, good for the customer, I...

          I mean, rumor has it that the employees didn't know squat until it was announced to everybody all at once, and that a fair chunk of them aren't keeping their jobs. So, good for the customer, I guess, but not so much for the staff.

          5 votes
          1. aditya
            Link Parent
            Yeah I read that this morning. That's very poorly handled.

            Yeah I read that this morning. That's very poorly handled.

            4 votes
    2. [3]
      Akir
      Link Parent
      AFAIK the controller was just a regular usb or Bluetooth device and the only streaming hardware they sold for Stadia were chromecast devices, so they can still be used for other things.

      AFAIK the controller was just a regular usb or Bluetooth device and the only streaming hardware they sold for Stadia were chromecast devices, so they can still be used for other things.

      5 votes
      1. Jedi
        Link Parent
        USB only, it connected wirelessly over WiFi. It does have BLE built-in, so hopefully they can push an update to allow Bluetooth like Valve did with the Steam Controller.

        USB only, it connected wirelessly over WiFi. It does have BLE built-in, so hopefully they can push an update to allow Bluetooth like Valve did with the Steam Controller.

        2 votes
    3. [3]
      babypuncher
      Link Parent
      The only "hardware" was the Chromecast Ultra and the Stadia controller. Obviously the Chromecast Ultra is still a perfectly functional Chromecast Ultra. The controllers are a bit messier. It has...

      The only "hardware" was the Chromecast Ultra and the Stadia controller.

      Obviously the Chromecast Ultra is still a perfectly functional Chromecast Ultra.

      The controllers are a bit messier. It has bluetooth hardware, but it is only used for initial setup with a Chromecast. When playing a game, the controller uses WiFi to communicate directly with Stadia's servers. The only way to get any use out of a Stadia controller after January 2023 will be over USB.

      5 votes
      1. [2]
        aditya
        Link Parent
        Ah that's unfortunate. Theoretically they could push out a firmware update making the controller usable with any system wirelessly, yeah? I wonder if users should push for that.

        Ah that's unfortunate. Theoretically they could push out a firmware update making the controller usable with any system wirelessly, yeah? I wonder if users should push for that.

        1. babypuncher
          Link Parent
          Most likely yes, but it's hard to say for certain without knowing the capabilities of their bluetooth controller or the other computing hardware inside.

          Most likely yes, but it's hard to say for certain without knowing the capabilities of their bluetooth controller or the other computing hardware inside.

          3 votes
    4. vord
      Link Parent
      Probably unless someone convinces Google to unlock the bootloader and provide some instructions to flash it.

      Probably unless someone convinces Google to unlock the bootloader and provide some instructions to flash it.

  8. lou
    (edited )
    Link
    On the other hand, Xbox Cloud beta seems to be working fairly well on consoles and even on WiFi, at least for my friends with way better connections than mine. It does work with my 5ghz...

    On the other hand, Xbox Cloud beta seems to be working fairly well on consoles and even on WiFi, at least for my friends with way better connections than mine.

    It does work with my 5ghz connection, but the image quality is poor, generally below 720p and often worse than that. I'll try with Ethernet, there will probably be an improvement. Update: there wasn't.

    4 votes
  9. guts
    Link
    I always taught Google master plan would be to bundle Stadia with the Chromecast with Google TV, so all Google users would have a cheap gaming console on their TV. Nothing of that happened and as...

    I always taught Google master plan would be to bundle Stadia with the Chromecast with Google TV, so all Google users would have a cheap gaming console on their TV. Nothing of that happened and as with the Pixel Phone, you can only find the CCwGTV in limited countries. What a missed opportunity.

    4 votes
  10. [8]
    loto
    Link
    I'm not shocked, but as pointed out by others, they're refunding games & hardware purchased (at least from Google themselves), which is an unexpected move in my eyes - unfortunately we never...

    I'm not shocked, but as pointed out by others, they're refunding games & hardware purchased (at least from Google themselves), which is an unexpected move in my eyes - unfortunately we never seemed to get the main benefit I was hoping for from Stadia (more games ported to desktop Linux), but oh well.

    2 votes
    1. [7]
      babypuncher
      Link Parent
      Having played games on Linux on and off for nearly 20 years, I kind of prefer the new status quo of games running well in Proton. Native ports are nice when they are well made, but without ongoing...

      Having played games on Linux on and off for nearly 20 years, I kind of prefer the new status quo of games running well in Proton.

      Native ports are nice when they are well made, but without ongoing maintenance they often start to fall apart. The typical Linux userspace today looks very different than it did in 2002, necessitating the use of compatibility layers or other nonsense to get some old games running. I think this is a natural result of running proprietary software on a platform geared towards community owned open source software. To Valve's credit, they somewhat mitigate this by shipping the Linux version of Steam with a stable runtime against which games can be built, bypassing compatibility issues brought about by missing or incompatible libraries on the host.

      I like to think of Proton as a Windows-compatible runtime that developers can target. If they avoid use of legally problematic libraries such as Windows Media Foundation or kernel space anti-cheat modules, developers can pretty easily build a game that runs like native on Linux.

      As a user, I now get the benefit of being able to use mods that rely on DLL injection or modification of the game binaries themselves.

      8 votes
      1. loto
        Link Parent
        I'm of the same mind, I've been gaming pretty exclusively on linux for the last few years (including on a GPD win and now my Steam Deck), and proton's been absolutely wonderful, especially since I...

        I'm of the same mind, I've been gaming pretty exclusively on linux for the last few years (including on a GPD win and now my Steam Deck), and proton's been absolutely wonderful, especially since I can now use some windows-only mods (specifically right now, for the Great Ace Attorney, there's a mod that uncaps the animation framerate shipped as a dll). Although the few native ports I'm running are pretty good & have worked for a while, but I assume they're working on valve's runtime

        4 votes
      2. [4]
        vord
        Link Parent
        Valve did work to insure both Battleye and EAC can support Proton. Most developers could just flick a switch to enable it.

        kernel space anti-cheat modules

        Valve did work to insure both Battleye and EAC can support Proton. Most developers could just flick a switch to enable it.

        3 votes
        1. [3]
          Pistos
          Link Parent
          How up-to-date is that statement? Just a few months ago, EasyAntiCheat was still a showstopper for at least a few games (even if it worked alright for some other games).

          How up-to-date is that statement? Just a few months ago, EasyAntiCheat was still a showstopper for at least a few games (even if it worked alright for some other games).

          2 votes
          1. [2]
            admicos
            Link Parent
            AFAIK Proton/Wine support is a setting the developer needs to enable explicitly. At least for EAC though BattlEye probably has the same thing.

            AFAIK Proton/Wine support is a setting the developer needs to enable explicitly. At least for EAC though BattlEye probably has the same thing.

            4 votes
      3. csos95
        Link Parent
        I agree. When I went through the process of installing steam in wine a few years a go (like a year or two before proton was added iirc), I found that most of the games that had linux ports ran...

        Native ports are nice when they are well made, but without ongoing maintenance they often start to fall apart.

        I agree.
        When I went through the process of installing steam in wine a few years a go (like a year or two before proton was added iirc), I found that most of the games that had linux ports ran better through wine.
        The exceptions were usually Valve games.
        I spent a few days switching most of my games over to the windows versions and was much happier for it.

        3 votes
  11. Removed by admin: 6 comments by 4 users
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