Google is making it easier to play games in and outside of Stadia

stadia controller
(Image credit: Android Central)

What you need to know

  • Google revealed a new program called Low Change Porting that will help developers bring games to Stadia faster.
  • Click to Play Trials, where anyone can play demos of Stadia games without an account, will be available to use for all studios by the end of the year.
  • Google unveiled its B2B offering called Immersive Stream for Games that allows companies to run streaming games and more using Stadia tech, but outside the Stadia ecosystem.

Google announced new programs for developers and publishers that make it easier to stream games directly to players, whether in the Stadia ecosystem or not, at its Google for Games Developer Summit today.

The company revealed a new initiative called Low Change Porting, which will allow developers to more easily port games based on Unreal Engine and Unity to Stadia. The program is currently being tested by several partners such as Saber Interactive, Steel Wool Studios, Team 17, and Paradox Interactive with the upcoming Cities: Skylines using the tools. Low Charge Porting will be open to more partners later this year.

One of the sessions at Google for Games Developer Summit today called "How to write a Windows emulator for Linux from scratch" made it seem like Google was developing an emulator for Windows games to run on Stadia, but the presentation was more about porting tips and a "binary translation" tutorial for studios developing on Stadia.

Google announced it is opening up the Click to Play Trial feature for all developers and publishers by the end of 2022. Click to Pay Trial allows anyone without an account to try out games on Stadia by clicking a link. One of the trials starting today is rougelike shooter Risk of Rain 2 with a 60-minute time limit and the ability to carry progress over when purchased.

The Stadia storefront will also be open for everyone to view games and sales within the coming weeks. Since launch, only users with a Stadia account could access the store.

Finally, Google unveiled a new B2B offering called Immersive Stream for Games, which was previously known as Google Stream. The white-label service, built in conjunction with the Stadia and Google Cloud teams, allows partners to stream its games directly to players through Stadia's tech without being part of its ecosystem.

The offering would make it possible for companies to stream games or game libraries beyond simply access to one game. Google was reportedly in talks with Capcom to help run game demos on the company's website and with Bungie on "a streaming platform of its own.

One example of the initiative was AT&T offering a free cloud version of Batman: Arkham Knight to its wireless customers last year, and the company is planning another game coming using the same technology across web browsers on desktop and mobile.

Thomas J Meyer

Thomas Meyer fell in love with video games starting in the mid '90s with a NES, Super Mario Bros., Duck Hunt, and Jack Nicklaus' Greatest 18 Holes of Major Championship Golf. He hasn't stopped and is not planning to anytime soon. Freelance for Android Central and Windows Central.