Just over a year after Google Stadia has launched, Google has announced that they will be rethinking their vision for the platform. Google begins with shutting down its internal game development studios.
This announcement comes from Google Stadia's GM and Vice President Phil Harrison's blog post about the closure of Stadia Games and Entertainment, and the forward vision for Stadia.
"Creating best-in-class games from the ground up takes many years and significant investment, and the cost is going up exponentially. Given our focus on building on the proven technology of Stadia as well as deepening our business partnerships, we've decided that we will not be investing further in bringing exclusive content from our internal development team SG&E, beyond any near-term planned games." - Phil Harrison, GM and Vice President, Stadia.
There are two studios affected by these closures—one in Montreal and one in Los Angeles. In total, this will affect 150 developers. Google has offered other positions in the company to these developers if they choose to stay.
With SG&E's closure, Google will no longer focus on creating "Stadia Exclusive" games. Instead, Google will focus on partnering with third-party developers to release games on Stadia.
Google also plans on offering up its streaming technology to third-parties to help them create their own streaming services, powered by Stadia Streaming Tech.
"In 2021, we're expanding our efforts to help game developers and publishers take advantage of our platform technology and deliver games directly to their players. We see an important opportunity to work with partners seeking a gaming solution all built on Stadia's advanced technical infrastructure and platform tools. We believe this is the best path to building Stadia into a long-term, sustainable business that helps grow the industry." - Phil Harrison, GM and Vice President, Stadia.
Google Stadia will continue to offer its Stadia and Stadia Pro services to its users. They will continue to work with third-party developers to bring their games to players' devices instantly through Stadia's streaming technology.
Google Stadia had a rocky launch when it was released back in late 2019. The platform refocusing its vision may be what it needs to continue to grow and evolve in the highly competitive cloud gaming scene.