It’s been about 8 months since Google launched Stadia, their cloud game streaming service. And, much like any new platform or service, it has had its fair share of ups and downs. Though, steadily, more and more games have been released and support from developers is on the rise.
In April’s Stadia Connect we got confirmation that EA will be releasing some of their biggest games on Stadia such as Madden 21, Fifa 21, and Jedi Fallen Order to name a few. And, just a few days ago at Ubisoft Forward, Assassin’s Creed Valhalla, Watch Dogs Legion and Far Cry 6 were all confirmed for Stadia.
Now, 8 months out, Stadia has started to establish itself as a viable platform and is looking to the future. Both myself and Chris from Best Buy’s Branche-toi Blog recently had the opportunity to chat with Wave Break developer Funktronic Labs and participate in a special in-game press conference and tour with the Crayta developers at Unit 2 Games. We are here to share those experiences with you, along with all the news and announcements from today’s Stadia Connect presentation.
Wave Break developer interview with Funktronic Labs
Jon: Tell us a little bit about Funktronic Labs and Wave Break. What kind of game is it and what are some of the game modes included?
Kalin: Myself and Eddie formed the studio about 6 years ago and have been working on a variety of PC and console games. In our games, we like to focus on interesting and high-tech art techniques as well as something creative and new with every project we make. We tend to do this on new technology, when we can. For example, virtual reality, AR headsets, and building new technology and game designs on PC and console.
Wave Break is a classic arcade skate boating game, which is an homage to old school arcade style skating games like Tony Hawk. The focus of the game is about doing cool tricks, making massive combos and getting lots of points. Wave Break is filled with lots of collectable objectives, different game modes, and cosmetics to customize your character. The spin off of the core of the skating design is boats. So, we have water physics and lots of guns and weapons for player to player interactions.
Stadia development and support
Jon: How was it developing on Stadia? Were there any hurdles you had to overcome?
Kalin: Honestly, developing on Stadia is not really that different from developing on other consoles. Stadia is cloud based, so it does make things a little bit streamlined for uploading builds, testing things and applying things. We make our builds locally then upload to Google and go from there, it’s pretty straight forward.
Chris: How was the support of Google to help you release the game on Stadia?
Kalin: They have been great to work with. Everything has been streamlined for our release and they have been great sharing news about our game. Anytime we have had any questions they are quick to respond and are very helpful.
Yu: They are rolling out a lot of interesting programs that other platforms don’t offer, which is a lot of help. As an indie studio it can be very hard to do a lot of the PR and marketing and to have Google come through and give us that additional support is a big deal.
Community feedback and future games
Chris: How has feedback been from the community? Any plans to add more content to the game in the coming months?
Kalin/Yu: Feedback from the community has been really positive. People in the Stadia subreddit have been very excited and really positive. We get lots of emails, all positive and everyone really enjoys the game. There are a few things people have pointed out that they are having issues with in terms of difficulty. This is great because these are things we can tweak and address to make the game better. In terms of added content and updates we have lots of stuff planned over the next year or two or three but we can’t chat about that just yet.
Jon: Any other projects in the pipeline? Will it be coming to Stadia too?
Kalin: We have a couple prototypes of games in various different stages. The studio often works on multiple things at the same time. Currently, we have a pretty large VR project going on and as one project scales down people come over from the other team to help out. Out of these projects we don’t have any confirmed Stadia titles yet.
Crayta – Play a Different Game
A week before launch, both myself and Chris had the opportunity to attend a special in-game press conference and tour with the developers at Unit 2 Games. For those that don’t know, Crayta allows you to create and publish your own games regardless of age, experience or background. It gives you the tools to create until your heart’s content. It does it in real time and there is no need to download anything at all.
For advanced developers, there are complex tools that allow you to create even more elaborate games and improve them using Crayta’s analytic dashboards. And, Unit 2 has forums, FAQs, a developer portal and game companion that will help you make the most of Crayta.
As you can see from the video above, the Crayta community has made some amazing creations after only 1 week! Chris and I spent well over 2 hours playing all the launch games in Crayta and a good hour or so with our group creating our own game.
As you can see from the picture below, we experimented a lot with things. In the end, we had a lot of fun and I’m very optimistic about Crayta’s future on Stadia. Currently, Crayta is a Stadia Pro game, that means you get it free if you are a Stadia Pro subscriber. And, if you’re not a Stadia Pro subscriber you can buy the game from the Stadia store.
July Stadia Connect news and information
Today’s Stadia Connect gave us updates regarding games, including exclusive titles, content updates to Stadia Pro and several Stadia Games and Entertainment developers. In all, 16 new games coming to Stadia (including 5 exclusives) were announced. Let’s dig in!
Super Bomberman R Online
The presentation opened with a surprise first on Stadia announcement of Super Bomberman R Online from Konami. As a long time Bomberman fan, I am excited to see the Bomberman series come to Stadia. I can’t wait to try out the Battle 64 mode. In this mode you battle it out with 64 other players simultaneously across multiple areas.
Not only can you customize your character, you can even customize your bomb. And each bomb comes with its own unique blast: regular, popcorn, La Vie en Rose, and ornate. Moreover, Super Bomber Man R Online features Crow Play support. That means you can instantly join a friend’s or streamer’s game by clicking a link. Super Bomberman R Online is coming to Stadia this fall!
Dead by Daylight
One of the most popular multiplayer horror games is coming to Stadia this September, Dead by Daylight. It features cross-platform play along with Stadia exclusive features including Crowd Choice and Crowd Play. The Crowd Choice feature allows the community to vote and influence their favorite YouTube streamer’s match. The viewers will choose whether the influencer will play as a Killer or a Survivor, followed by which character.
Hello Neighbor and Hello Neighbor Hide & Seek
The survival horror stealth game Hello Neighbor is coming to Stadia in September as a Stadia Pro game. The game centres around the neighbour across the street who is behaving in a paranoid manner. It seems like he is keeping a secret in his basement. Your job is to break into the neighbor’s home and solve a series of puzzles in order to gather the items needed to unlock and access his basement.
The prequel Hello Neighbor Hide & Seek is also making its way to Stadia holiday 2020 as a Stadia Pro game. In this game you play a game of hide-and-seek with your brother as you both deal with a loss of a family member. The prequel explains events that lead up to Hello Neighbor.
One Hand Clapping
This Early Access First on Stadia game is a 2D puzzle platformer where you must sing into your microphone to solve musical puzzles. It’s unique as the game allows you to express yourself through its mechanics. The game is available now in the Stadia Store and I’m looking forward to playing it.
Outriders: Journey Into the Unknown
This upcoming hybrid RPG/third-person shooter possesses Destiny-like vibes and is coming to Stadia Holiday 2020. It comes from developer People Can Fly and is published by Square Enix.
You will become an Outrider, a fallen pioneer from a forgotten past, reborn with devastating powers as you choose one of four unique classes. Each has its own set of novel skills, strengths, and abilities.
Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice
Last year’s game of the year Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice is coming to Stadia this fall. The game takes place in the 16th century Sengoku period Japan, filled with ancient structures, steep cliffs, snowy mountains and enemies around every corner. You assume the role of Wolf, a disgraced shinobi and member of the Ashina Clan. Tasked with protecting Kuro, a royal heir with a special bloodline, you are sworn to do whatever it takes to keep him safe.
Hitman: World Assassination Trilogy
All three Hitman titles within the World of Assassination trilogy are coming to Stadia. Both Hitman and Hitman 2 are coming to Stadia September 1st. And, Hitman 3 follows suit in January 2021 with new unique items.
Serious Sam 4
Serious Sam returns in a high-powered prequel to the Serious Sam series. It’s loaded with an explosive arsenal, intergalactic carnage, and perfectly timed one-liners. The classic Serious Sam formula is revamped by putting an unstoppable arsenal up against an unimaginable number of enemies that requires players to circle-strafe and backpedal-blast their way out of impossible situations. Serious Sam 4 launches in August on Stadia.
2K Games – WWE 2K Battlegrounds, PGA TOUR 2K21 and NBA 2K21
2K games are bringing their top games to Stadia: PGA TOUR 2K21 (August 21), WWE 2K Battlegrounds (September 18) and NBA 2K21 (Fall 2020). In PGA TOUR 2K21 you can play by the rules or create your own, featuring an all-new PGA TOUR Career Mode with real courses and top pros to compete against on your road to win the FedExCup.
WWE 2K Battlegrounds is an arcade-style action and over-the-top wrestling game that both casual gamers and passionate fans will enjoy. And, NBA 2k21 is the latest title in the world-renowned, best-selling NBA 2K series, delivering an industry-leading sports video game experience.
Stadia Games and Entertainment
Today, we got an update of new developers working with the Stadia Games and Entertainment team to create Only on Stadia content.
- Harmonix: the legendary developers behind some of the most beloved music games ever, delivering both intense rhythm and passion to everything they do.
- Uppercut Games: specializing in immersive environmental storytelling, powerful emotional experiences, and boundary-pushing creativity.
- Supermassive Games: bringing ten years of award-winning expertise to Stadia, with a legacy of crafting some of the most playable and watchable games around.
Additionally, we saw footage of, only on Stadia, Outcasters, coming this fall, from famed developers Splash Damage. It’s a vibrant and accessible competitive 8 player online multiplayer game set in a distinctly stylized vinyl world. Finally, the presentation closed with footage of, only on Stadia, Orcs Must Die! 3 the long-awaited successor to the tower defense award-winning series. And, we found out that it’s available now free in Stadia Pro.
Play at Best Buy
Make sure to bookmark and visit the Best Buy Blog as well as our Play at Best Buy gaming hub frequently all summer long. Here we will have special offers, including pre-order links to new games, contests, and the latest news. And, don’t forget to check out my Twitter feed as well as Best Buy Canada’s.
Here’s are the social media links for you to bookmark:
We also want Play at Best Buy to be an interactive event with you. So let us know what games, news and announcements you are excited about with your likes, comments, and shares! Make 2020 even more memorable, enter for a chance to win great prizes with the Play at Best Buy gaming contest with gaming gear, or even a new Sony Premium TV and audio system.