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Google Stadia - "Future of Gaming" announced at GDC 2019

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I don't think you're wrong. It barely works on fast PC hardware, over a wired network, to my Xbox downstairs. 

 

I'm not sure you and I are driving this discussion, though.

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21 hours ago, El Stevo said:

Also, all my soldiers died in XCom and that was all due to lag and no other reason.

 

I'm completely with JP on this one - sending a controller input from your home, alllll the way to a server somewhere, waiting for it to be processed and then waiting for the results to be sent alllll the way back to your home is not how video games should be played. Especially Xcom. Bullshit aliens.

 

They were talking about this on a Bombcast recently(ish) and Jeff made the point that a streaming service might not lead to twitchy arcade and action games being compromised - it may in fact lead to that type of game just not being made any more. That's not a happy future.

 

 Notsureifserious.gif You are talking about that famous Turn-Based Strategy reboot game, XCOM?

 

This topic clearly riles some people up as they can imagine the darkest timeline, which I suppose is a definite possibility. The primary reason Microsoft are doing it is to reach the ~85%+ of the total global gaming population they currently can't convince to use them as their preferred gaming entertainment provider, the Xbox or Windows Store or Minecraft aren't going to get them there, the XCloud just might.

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So I've gotten an invite for this. Sadly just have a wired Switch controller... hope it works!

 

With report my experience once I've spent a bit of time with it.

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OK, just set it up, and a few initial reactions.

 

Tested on MacOS Mojave with Chrome 69. Wired connection: 65 Down/10 Up. Latency ranges from 7ms-15ms although my latency to the nearest Google server is about 37ms according to http://www.gcping.com/. Location: New York/Manhattan.

 

Very quick to launch and get into the game. I've used Geforce Now before and it takes ages in comparison to this. Mainly because I think GFN is a brute force spinning up of a server and Steam and launching the game. This is as quick as a console.

 

Image quality seems excellent, but I'm no expert. I think it's probably running on high but not the absolutely max settings though I don't have anything to compare against. Looks like 30 FPS. While normally excellent every now and again it just freezes or drops to very low resolution and then crashes out with a warning that the connection has failed. Not sure why this happens but anecdotally, my wife started streaming Google Play Music and it crapped out. Not sure it was a coincidence, but regardless... an Xbox or PS4 generally does not suddenly stop working once an hour for no reason.

 

The Display settings do not have any user configurable graphics settings. This is more like console than a configurable cloud PC as is the case for Shadow or Geforce Now.

 

Does not support Switch Pro Controller yet (:( ) so stuck with keyboard & mouse controls which are terrible, but mainly out of personal preference - it seems responsive. I'm also using a Mac, and as anyone who attempts to play games on mac knows, the Apple Magic Mouse is terrible for gaming. I NEED an Xbox or PS4 controller if I'm going to play this.

 

Turns off after 20 minutes of inactivity.

 

Some Images. Apologies for file sizes.

 

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1 hour ago, hub2 said:

While normally excellent every now and again it just freezes or drops to very low resolution and then crashes out with a warning that the connection has failed. Not sure why this happens but anecdotally, my wife started streaming Google Play Music and it crapped out. Not sure it was a coincidence, but regardless... an Xbox or PS4 generally does not suddenly stop working once an hour for no reason.

It could have been the streaming. I've been meaning to setup some QoS for traffic over the lan for Xbox streaming, because it craps out like that occasionally. Makes no sense otherwise over a wired network. Guess mileage with vary depending on the quality of network gear.

 

Thanks for the initial impressions.

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The rumours are this is coming, as Google Yeti, Real Soon Now. Announcement on March 19th at GDC.

 

Apparently with this controller:

 

google_stream_controller_6.thumb.jpg.a78175091a637c688d82b6e030b01da1.jpg

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A few more complete shots, from multiple angles:

 

 

Lowlights:

  • buttons only delineated by colour, meaning any button prompts will be, er, interesting for colour-blind folks
  • concave(!?) menu buttons
  • blech angular design of seeming discomfort
  • analogue sticks in the nasty dual shock layout

 

Highlights:

  • I quite like the colour accents on the d-pad. That's pretty cute.
  • It has at least got the standard number of analogue sticks and buttons?
  • um

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32 minutes ago, Mr. Gerbik said:

Looking at that, my main worry is how comfortable it is to hold. Ergonomics are important. It looks like they're going for style over usability.

 

Doesn't even look particularly stylish, to me at least.

 

I'll stick with games on my PC, and a trusty Xbox controller, thanks.

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Fucking hell, that thing makes your average MadCatz controller, that you'd palm off to the person you liked least in a 4 player game, look like a masterpiece of design.

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13 minutes ago, JoeK said:



  Doesn't even look particularly stylish, to me at least

Totally agree, but I think that that is what they were going for.

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If this is to succeed then surely it needs to support controllers you already own...I expect it will. Maybe. 

 

I've been using ShadowPC quite a bit recently and streaming games works surprisingly well. It's not perfect by any means but it's pretty damn good, I look forward to seeing how the Google service pans out as Shadow is quite expensive. 

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The pictures are renders created based on drawings from a patent filing so hopefully the actual controller won't be a monstrosity. 

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Drawings entirely composed of dashed lines, which I think is patent-ese for “this is just as an example and means nothing”.

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Do they patent pads, then? Would have thought it had been pretty established as prior art or whatever the patent parlance is. Or would it be part of some wider patent?

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7 hours ago, TehStu said:

Do they patent pads, then? Would have thought it had been pretty established as prior art or whatever the patent parlance is. Or would it be part of some wider patent?

 

 

Quote

The patent itself is for a notification system for the controller that notifies a player when a game is now available, that a user has received an invitation, a status chance on a leaderboard, or a chat request from another player.

Nice and vague so. Hopefully there's a clearer explanation out there. 

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The 'notification" system in this instance is really more about putting the controller, erm, in control. It communicates with the service and can send it to a display, such as a TV or tablet. In real terms I think that makes it much like when you use your phone to in tandem with a Chromecast or TV supporting youtube directly.

 

 

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Fun fact, I created a virtual machine in a North American datacentre so I could sign up to the project stream AC: Odyssey demo, then put a plate on my keyboard so I ran in a circle for an hour with about 5 seconds of delay in order to get a free copy in my Uplay account. It bloody worked too.

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