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Google will shut down Stadia game studios to help the service last

Legendary game developer Jade Raymond is leaving as a result.

Published onFebruary 1, 2021

Google Stadia controller on table
  • Google is closing its Stadia game studios after they release any near-term games.
  • It’s hoping this will help Stadia survive for the long haul.
  • Well-known developer Jade Raymond is leaving Google as a result.

Google is determined to keep Stadia going, and that’s leading it to make some hard choices about the games it supports. The internet giant has announced that it’s “winding down” Stadia game studios to help it focus on the cloud-based service and its growing partnerships.

The company is ending investment in Stadia Games and Entertainment’s exclusive titles outside of “near-term planned” projects. It’s not certain just when the Stadia studios’ few exclusives will arrive, but the move will cost Google some top talent — SG&E lead and well-known developer Jade Raymond (of Assassin’s Creed fame) is leaving the firm. Other team members will find new roles in the months ahead.

Read more: The full list of Google Stadia games

The shutdown and changing focus will help Google shape Stadia into a “long-term, sustainable business,” VP Phil Harrison said. The cost of in-house development was climbing sharply, and Google decided it was better to trim those costs than hope exclusives would draw in players.

The executive stressed that little would change if you’re a  subscriber. Stadia will carry on as it normally does, and you’ll see more games added over time. This just limits the expanding catalog to third-party titles rather than Google’s own.

This doesn’t necessarily mean Stadia is in dire straits. However, it’s evident Google is eager to trim costs and might have expected Stadia to grow quickly enough to support internal game studios. Whatever Google’s hopes, that kind of growth clearly didn’t happen. You’ll have to choose between this and rivals like GeForce Now based on outside catalogs and the quality of the services themselves.