Google unveiled the company’s Stadia gaming platform during a press event on Thursday morning. At the event, we learned that players will need a subscription to play games on Google Stadia to enjoy all of the features, and they will need to purchase each game separately. There will be two tiers, a paid tier with 4K gaming, and a free tier with 1080p.
Using the streaming service, subscribers can get high-end PC gameplay without the high-end computer. Users plug a special Chromecast into a monitor or television, then stream the video from Google’s servers. Google’s hardware does all of the heavy lifting during a game, which can run up to 4K resolution at 60FPS. The service is launching in 2019 with the paid $10/month tier, and the free version is scheduled to launch in 2020.
To play in 2019, you’ll need to get the Google Stadia Founder’s Edition bundle for $130, and those units ship out in November. The founders edition comes with a Chromecast Ultra, a Stadia controller, a copy of Destiny 2 with the Shadowkeep expansion, a three-month subscription, and a three-month buddy pass.
The differences between the $10/month Stadia Pro and the free Stadia Base service is extra features. Stadio Pro offers games in 4K resolution and 5.1 Surround Sound, while the free tier offers 1080p and Stereo Sound. The Stadio Pro tier will also offer free games from time to time (starting with Destiny 2: The Collection) and discounts on other games.
Your internet connection will determine your resolution, but all speeds higher than Google’s recommended 10Mbps play at 60fps. At 10Mbps you can play in 720p with stereo sound support. At 20Mbps the resolution jumps to 1080p with HDR Video and 5.1 Surround Sound support. If your internet sits somewhere between 30Mbps and 35Mbps, you can play games in 4K with HDR Video, and 5.1 Surround Sound at 60fps. Note that the 4K and Surround Sound options are for the paid tier.
At the event, Google also announced “Baldur’s Gate 3” and “Ghost Recon: Breakout.” The other titles announced at the event include “Assassin’s Creed Odyssey,” “Doom + Doom Eternal,” the “Tomb Raider” franchise, “Final Fantasy XV,” “Darksiders Genesis,” “Metro Exodus,” and “The Division 2.”
You can find more information on the Google Stadia Founder’s Edition right here on the Google Store.
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