Stadia-exclusive follow-up to ‘Death Stranding’ has reportedly been canceled by Google

Stadia-exclusive follow-up to 'Death Stranding' has reportedly been canceled by Google

Google’s failure to get exclusive blockbuster titles for its cloud gaming service Stadia, which it will shut down in January, was one of the fundamental issues that doomed it from the start. Red Dead Redemption 2, Cyberpunk 2077, and Destiny 2 were formerly playable on the platform, however, they are now accessible elsewhere. As it turns out, Google may have declined the opportunity to acquire an exclusive game from one of the largest gaming companies.

According to 9to5 Google, Hideo Kojima was at one time developing a Stadia-exclusive sequel to Death Stranding, which premiered on PlayStation in 2019 and was subsequently released on PC. There are asynchronous multiplayer features in Death Stranding.

For example, other players may be able to utilise the ladders, roads, and other objects you construct in the environment. However, the proposed sequel was said to be a purely single-player experience, which may have been the reason why Google shelved the project.

According to the story, Google cancelled the game, which was characterised as an episodic horror game, after seeing the initial prototypes in 2020. Phil Harrison, vice president and general manager of Stadia, reportedly took the ultimate decision to terminate the project. Kojima revealed in a May 2020 interview that one of his projects had just been terminated.

Phil Harrison, vice president and general manager of Google, speaks during a Google keynote address at the Gaming Developers Conference in San Francisco, California, U.S., on March 19, 2019, announcing a new video gaming streaming service called Stadia that attempts to capitalise on the company’s cloud technology and global network of data centres.

Google apparently abandoned the project because it believed there was no longer a need for single-player games. Notably, CD Projekt Red has now stated that Cyberpunk 2077 (which was again published on Stadia) has already sold 20 million copies, less than two years after its dramatic release. By the middle of 2021, Death Stranding had sold over 5 million copies.

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The absence of major exclusives was not the sole factor in Stadia’s demise. A dubious business model and a deployment that seemed hurried did not help, nor did Google’s reputation for aggressively eliminating its own products.

Despite the fact that Stadia boasts superb game streaming technology and some devoted followers, it has never taken off as Google had planned. On January 18th, the business will shut down the platform and reimburse all hardware and software purchases (except for Pro subscriptions). Ubisoft is working on a method to offer Stadia purchasers access to PC versions of its titles.

The news of Stadia’s collapse stunned creators, from heavyweights like Destiny 2 producer Bungie to independent companies whose products were scheduled to launch in the coming weeks on the now-closed Stadia marketplace.

According to Axios, it is unclear if Google has a comprehensive strategy to pay studios for money they anticipated recovering after publishing their games on Stadia. There are also questions over the implications of Stadia’s shutdown for game preservation. While Google was unable to get AAA exclusives for Stadia, the platform does offer several independent titles that are not accessible elsewhere.

Meanwhile, some have suggested that Google open the Bluetooth capabilities of the Stadia Controller. The reasoning is that if the gamepad can be used more readily on other platforms, it will be less likely to become e-waste. For Stadia games, the controller connects directly to WiFi in order to reduce latency. It may also be connected to devices through a USB-C connection.

According to the game’s star, Norman Reedus, Kojima is now developing a sequel to Death Stranding. In June, it was revealed that Kojima is collaborating with Xbox Game Studios on his upcoming game. This game will use Microsoft’s cloud computing technologies.

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