Outriders CoopSource: Square Enix

What you need to know

  • Outriders is out now for Stadia and all other platforms.
  • Cross-play does not work at all on Stadia right now.
  • The Stadia build is an outdated version of the game and is suffering from several other launch bugs and issues.

Outriders released on April 1 for Stadia and all other platforms. I've been playing it myself and am around five hours in so far—you can check back later this month for my full review of the Stadia version. As of now I'm having fun with how the Trickster controls, so it's too bad the game itself is struggling in basically every way, way more than other Stadia games.

For starters, the majority of launch day was entirely unplayable. On the official Outriders 'Status' website, both 'Core Components' and 'Multiplayer' were marked as experiencing "Partial Outage" and would frequently disconnect me when trying to do anything in the game. Even though Outriders can be played solo, you must be connected to the game's servers at all time to do anything at all.

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That was affecting every version of the game, but seems to be mostly resolved at this point. The bigger issue for Stadia is that the build Google's cloud platform is running is very outdated: v0100. Looking at the PC version of the demo (which Stadia was the only platform not to receive at all) on Steam at the time of this writing, it's running v1.0.3 of the game, which is presumably three patches more recent than the paid launch version on Stadia. The launch version of the game on Steam is v1.0.4. I confirmed the Xbox Game Pass version is also v1.0.4 according to a friend, but haven't been able to verify the version that's live on PlayStation.

You can find some additional troubleshooting information and tips for fixing crashes from Square Enix here, but those recommendations are specific to PS4/PS5 and since that version is newer than the Stadia version they may not work or apply to your issue on Stadia.

This obviously leads to a lot of issues for the Stadia version, but the biggest problem of all is the complete lack of cross-play. Since Stadia is running a different version of the game, cross-play fails every time you try to link up with a friend. Matchmaking is seemingly functional on Stadia, but the one time I tried it I got disconnected after accepting the match and just didn't try again.

There's a launch issues Reddit thread where Square Enix is tracking known bugs and it has a specific Stadia subthread, but you can find plenty more accounts from people in other threads across the Outriders subreddit. For me personally I experienced frequent disconnects all day, but they subsided by the time night rolled around. I have had several cutscenes with issues like this where clothing flops and clips, lighting cuts out, voiceover lines repeat themselves, lip syncing isn't synched, and more. Not to mention the Stadia version is devoid of almost any visual settings other than adjusting brightness or choosing to prioritize framerate or resolution. You can't adjust anything else at all.

Outriders Stadia Pink WorldSource: Android Central / David Jagneaux

The biggest problem I ran into though was a zone that was over-exposed and washed out by bright neon lights (pictured above). I have no idea what happened, but it was literally painful to look at and I had to restart the game to fix it. Thankfully that only happened once.

For all the flack Cyberpunk 2077 caught on other platforms for its performance issues, it ran like a dream on Stadia compared to this. The Stadia version of that game is still arguably the best way to play it and recent launches like Hitman 3, Madden, and FIFA have all gone off without a hitch on Stadia. Relatively speaking, it's disappointing to see a big multiplatform cross-play AAA game that's hitting all platforms at the same time suffer so much on Stadia by comparison—especially over a holiday weekend—so hopefully People Can Fly and Square Enix get it sorted quickly.