Google is closing Stadia’s internal development studios to refocus on platform

By Sherif Saed, Tuesday, 2 February 2021 09:13 GMT

Google has kicked off the new year with some bad news.

Google has announced that it’s shutting down both of its internal Stadia game development studios, located in Montreal and Lose Angeles. The company is instead pivoting Stadia to only be a platform.

In the short term, this means building the platform features announced back in 2019 at Stadia’s reveal, many of which have yet to materialise. Google is also looking to license its tech to game publishers, though it’s not clear what shape that will take.

“We believe this is the best path to building Stadia into a long-term, sustainable business that helps grow the industry,” said Phil Harrison, Google VP and Stadia GM.

“Creating best-in-class games from the ground up takes many years and significant investment, and the cost is going up exponentially,” he added.

“Given our focus on building on the proven technology of Stadia as well as deepening our business partnerships, we’ve decided that we will not be investing further in bringing exclusive content from our internal development team SG&E, beyond any near-term planned games.”

Jade Raymond, the veteran games producer known for working on Assassin’s Creed, as well as other projects at EA, is also leaving Stadia. Raymond had joined Stadia to help build first-party exclusive games for the platform. It’s not clear whether Shannon Studstill has also left the company. Studstill is a Sony Santa Monica veteran who joined Stadia less than a year ago.

For the time being, Stadia and Stadia Pro will continue. Harrison even suggested that more third-party exclusives are on the way, but today’s news certainly doesn’t give anyone hope in Stadia’s future.

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