Cake
  • Log In
  • Sign Up
    • We already knew Google set out to kill game consoles. Now we know exactly with what:

      Looks very interesting and I think it has promise. The crucial question that remains to be seen is the price structure, or how they plan to get big studios to bring AAA titles to their platform.

      The HW itself looks more than capable, even latency-wise:

    • I'm still sceptical as to how wide this platform will reach though. Since it relies on a stable (and fast) internet connection, that pretty much rules out a huge portion of the global population. Game consoles may have their flaws, but they've been around for a long time and for good reason. They do what they do well.

      I'm all for "the future", and while the idea of a Netflix-like video game streaming service does sound incredible, I doubt it'll make as big an impact as Google hopes. PCs, PlayStations, and X-Boxes will still be the preferred gaming platform for gamers for a long time. Stadia will probably just be a cool thing to try out once, but won't have the staying power to "kill" consoles.

    • Quite sceptical about the realities of input lag, and as @JazliAziz says, not everyone has a decent enough connection (ironically, most of USA doesn't, think ComCast).

      Definitely something to watch, but my expectations are rather low.

    • Unfortunately, "speed" as a single metric is quite misleading. We don't even have to start discussing latency or ask "speed between which two points exactly", how about upload vs download speeds? For example here in Israel, a high-tech "startup nation", the majority of residential Internet connections are VDSL over copper, meaning you can get DL speeds of up to 100Mbps (though the average is closer to 30, I think), but UL is 1.5-3 Mbps. And these are related, so if I wanted to upload a bunch of high-resolution videos, my Internet connection would essentially go bust (since TCP/IP packets need to travel bidirectionallly for connections to work) until upload completes, which would take hours.

    • I wouldn't discount it so easily. For anyone who can stream a high-quality Youtube video to be able to play a game, on highest graphics settings, with no download, no installation, no extra HW at all, instantly? That's a pretty significant, qualitative change.

      And remember: online things improve, constantly. So will this service. Game console generations last 5-6 years. Same HW, same capabilities. Now, where was streaming quality 6 years ago (when PS4 came out, for example)? And where will it be in 6 years (when PS5 will be 5 years old)? If Google can double the CPU/GPU capabilities every two years (and they can already stack CPU/GPU instances for 2x, 3x, 4x better results), where does that leave fixed-HW consoles? PCs? Why would I spend $2-4k on a brand-new gaming PC every two years, if Google does that for me? And all I have to have is a controller (sub-$100), a Chromecast ($35) and a halfway decent net connection?

    • I'm not sure how quickly streaming will be able to outpace local twitchy gaming, but for online games streaming makes perfect sense.

      The way online games work right now is your controller sends info to your local machine, and your local machine makes it "look" like you did something. But nothing really happens until the local machine makes a request to the game server sitting in a data center somewhere. So the latency between your action being processed and making it to the game server is:

      Latency_input_client + Latency_client_server = Total_action_latency

      So in the case of streamed games, this total number doesn't change. Its just that the client is colocated with the server now. So the latency between your controller and your machine is greater, but now the latency between the client running the game and the server is basically nothing.

      The problem for the consumer now is that when they were on a relatively high latency connection, and all their actions achieved the desired result when they hit the game server, the video response lag time will appear significantly higher because it has to completely round trip to the server. Before the client can sort of "pretend" that your command is accepted locally, to make it look like you have faster response time than you really do. This is why when you are on a high latency connection you can end up with really jerky movements in some games, or sometimes an action you take gets rolled back. i.e. you thought you shot enemy but turns out they shot you instead.

      So in general, I think for really twitchy single player games like Hollow Knight, local is still going to be the way to go because of video lag. But if you are playing Assassins creed multiplayer, which is a bit slower moving of a game and online, it probably won't make a big difference.

    • I'm afraid I'm going to have to disagree with these points.

      Being able to watch YouTube videos is not the same as being able to stream via Stadia. You'll need at least a (stable) connection speed of 25Mbps to get a good experience, which I'm sure not many people do. You could technically play at a lower resolution and frame rate, but why would you pay for that?

      And about the pricing of consoles. If you're talking about PC's, you don't need to spend $2-4k every few years. PC's are modular so you can upgrade individual components when you want/need to. As for consoles, they only cost a few hundred dollars. Considering you'll be using it for several years, the price/month becomes incredibly affordable. How is that worse than paying a monthly subscription for Stadia? Which btw, could possibly end up being more expensive over time compared to simply buying a console.

    • I read just today somewhere that Stadia is not about the future of gaming, but about the future of Youtube, and I think I agree with that assessment.

      Youtube is feeling the competitive pressure. If I remember right, it's already eclipsed by Amazon Prime in North America, Twitch is nothing to sneeze at either, and Google's involvement in gaming industry is about nil. That would make Stadia, again, a very nice experiment which sure does have potential to make us better understand things about games and streaming, but to be a "killer app" - not so much.