Over the weekend, The Verge published survey results revealing that the majority of game studios are actively prioritizing content for next-generation gaming hardware (PC, mobile, PlayStation 5, and Xbox Series X) over cloud-based platforms. Even more alarming, only 6 percent of respondents expressed interest in Stadia. Although this metric sounds bleak for Google’s game streaming efforts, there is a silver lining that reveals initial developer interest may actually be in good shape.
Comparing survey data
First, let’s put this report into perspective. Below is the complete data The Verge gathered from its game studio survey. Note that there is some percentage overlap due to developers adopting multiple gaming platforms:
- PC: 56%
- Mobile: 39%
- PlayStation 5: 11%
- Xbox Series X: 9%
- Stadia: 6%
- Xbox Project xCloud: 3%
As expected, PC will garner the most developer attention, followed closely by the mobile segment that has risen in popularity over the last decade, thanks to iOS and Android. After that, only five percentage points separate PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X, and Stadia, respectively.
Stadia faces decades-old competitors
Sony launched the first PlayStation in late 1994, while Microsoft’s Xbox was introduced seven years later in 2001. After decades of maturation, both consoles are now regarded as successful game platforms with valuable developer support driven by vibrant player communities.
On the flip side, Stadia has only been open to early adopters since November 2019 with widespread availability mapped out for sometime in 2020. The platform hasn’t even fully launched, yet 6 percent of game studios surveyed are already showing interest in developing for Stadia. Take into account that Google’s vision of cloud gaming hasn’t been thoroughly proven on a widespread scale, and this metric is starting to look pretty optimistic!
AAA content is key
That said, numbers aren’t everything. The Verge didn’t disclose which game studios responded to their survey, nor did they reveal which studios are backing Stadia, but one fact is clear: ushering in more developers doesn’t necessarily lead to more quality games.
What Stadia needs most – especially at this stage of the game (pun absolutely intended) – is support from AAA game studios like Ubisoft and Rockstar. Indie developers are great to have on board for ancillary content, but gamers are going to come (and stay) for large AAA titles. As long as major studios are within that 6 percent, Stadia players have plenty to get excited about — and if not, Google has some work to do in the developer relations department, though there is some good news here, as well.
Stadia is already growing
According to a statement released by the Stadia team, they are “tracking more than 120 games coming to Stadia in 2020, and are targeting more than ten games in the first half of this year alone that will be only available on Stadia when they launch.” This number is only likely to grow as Stadia gains in popularity throughout 2020.
After a bit of a rocky launch, Stadia is steadily establishing itself as a platform to be reckoned with. Sure, it doesn’t have the same support that PlayStation and Xbox can boast, but Google’s journey into the gaming market has just begun. With only months under its belt, having 6 percent developer support is a great sign for the platform’s future, especially considering that the stats for next-gen consoles aren’t too far ahead.
Source: The Verge