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Game Developers Say Google Stadia Just Isn’t Worth It

Google’s Stadia game streaming service just isn’t an attractive option for developers, according to a report. 

Business Insider spoke with multiple game developers who were critical of the financial support Google has so far offered to incentivise developers to bring their games to Stadia. 

The incentive “was kind of non-existent,” said one indie developer who was approached by the Stadia team. 

It isn’t just indie developers who claim Google simply isn’t doing enough to make ports worthwhile. 

One anonymous publishing executive told Business Insider that the Google offer was “so low it wasn’t even part of the conversation.” 

Launched late last year, Stadia is a service that allows users to purchase games and stream them to a screen via a compatible device. At launch, Stadia required users to purchase hardware, including a controller, from Google, but is now coming to a selection of non-Google phones. 

Although touted as a kind of “Netflix for games” Stadia does not use an all-you-can-eat subscription model. Users pay full price to purchase games which are then streamed. Currently the service has 28 game, although it continues to drip new additions and promises big new releases Doom Eternal and Cyberpunk 2077 later this year.

The extra work required to port a game to Stadia simply isn’t a worthwhile investment given the service’s slow uptake. 

“There are platforms you want to be on because they have an audience and you want to reach that audience,” Business Insider heard from one game developer. 

“That’s what Steam is, or that’s what [Nintendo] Switch is. They have big groups on their platforms, and you want to be with those groups so they can play your games.” 

Google Stadia has yet to launch in Australia. 

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