Google certainly made a lot of noise in the weeks leading up to the launch of its Stadia cloud-streaming game platform back in 2019. And since then, it hasn’t exactly been “smooth sailing” for the platform, which has seen its fair share of criticism from the gaming community, not to mention the shut-down of Google’s first-party development studios for the platform.
Contrary to popular belief, Stadia continues to thrive, and I think that it’s still a great option if you’re looking for a straightforward way to play some of your favorite games. Let’s take a look!
One of the great things about Stadia is that it works on different devices, provided that you have a reliable internet connection. If I wanted to play on my laptop, I could simply head on over to the Stadia website on my internet browser, pick a game from my library and I’m pretty much good to go.
If I wanted a more portable option, Stadia is also available on mobile devices via the Stadia app from the Google Playstore. Thanks to the app, I can easily play on my phone and tablet, and there’s even support for touchscreen controls. Although I’d strongly recommend using an actual controller for better handling, as touch controls are simply too cumbersome when used on AAA titles.
Speaking of controls, while Stadia does give you the option of using its first-party controller, I’ve been able to use a third-party Nintendo Switch controller to work with Stadia on both my laptop and mobile devices. Stadia also supports keyboard controls if you happen to be playing on a desktop or laptop.
Google Stadia is of course a subscription-based service. The Pro subscription will cost players $9.99 per month and access to a large library of triple-A console titles like Resident Evil Village, DOOM Eternal, Assassin’s Creed Valhalla, and more.
If you’re not in the mood to pay a monthly fee, you can opt to purchase games individually, which you can play even without a subscription fee, although they are a bit expensive. On the other hand, Stadia does have discounts on games every now and then, so you can get certain games at a cheaper price.
If you’re just looking to give some of the games a quick try, we also got some announcements from Stadia during the Google for Games Developer Summit held this March. You can now browse games in the Stadia store without needing to sign up for a stadia account. Stadia will also enable free trials via a “Click to Play” feature, which will instantly let players try out games on the platform and reduce the number of barriers for gamers who are interested in signing up for the service.
Should You Go For It?
In all honesty, Stadia is probably not for everyone – but for people looking for a quick and easy way to play great games without the need to buy additional hardware, Stadia offers a straightforward and functional gaming experience. Its ever-growing library of games and ease of access are some of its core strengths, and despite Google’s reputation of shutting down services that haven’t reached their full potential, we’re hoping that this one continues to make the cut for years to come.