Google says two editions of its Stadia cloud-based gaming platform will launch on November 19 in 14 countries, including the US, UK, and Canada.
For an initial price of $130, Founders Edition subscribers will receive a hardware starter kit, a copy of Bungle’s Destiny 2 and SNK’s Samurai Shodown, and three months of premium service. After three months, the subscription will continue at $10 per month.
The Founders Edition has already sold out in most of Europe and is quickly selling out in the United States. The Premiere Edition, also $130, delivers most of the same benefits. The key differences are that Founders Edition subscribers can set up their own unique Stadia handles, share three-month Stadia Pro buddy passes with friends, and receive a fancy Night Blue controller. Premiere Edition subscribers get a white controller and no buddy pass, but everything else is the same.
Google says it intends to evolve Stadia gradually to a free-to-play platform in 2020, with an optional $10 subscription delivering 4k resolution and HDR. Users will still have to buy the games, however.
These games will be available on the Stadia platform starting from day one, Google says:
- Assassin’s Creed Odyssey
- Destiny 2: The Collection
- Just Dance 2020
- Mortal Kombat 11
- Rise of the Tomb Raider
- Red Dead Redemption 2
- Samurai Shodown
- Shadow of the Tomb Raider
- Tomb Raider 2013
Google says the site will receive frequent updates. AAA titles like Borderlands 3, Witcher 3, and others will be available in coming months.
Stadia is not a traditional subscription service. Except for Destiny 2 and Samurai Shodown, which are bundled free with the initial premium subscriptions, Stadia users must purchase games instead of renting them. Prices will be similar to prices charged by other online retailers.