Google insists Stadia games ‘stream at 4K and 60 FPS’ and expects developers to ‘continue to improve their games on Stadia’

Google has responded to criticism that its Stadia streaming service is failing to meet consumer expectations after it was advertised that all Stadia games at launch would support 4K.

Despite a tweet from Stadia boss Phil Harrison which said “all games at launch support 4K” and marketing materials stating Stadia’s GPU “has more power than Xbox One X and PS4 Pro combined”, Destiny renders at a native 1080p and is then upscaled, but does not reach 4K. Red Dead Redemption 2, too, renders at 1080p or 1440p, not 4K (thanks, Eurogamer).

In a statement to Eurogamer, Google insisted Stadia does stream at 4K and 60fps, but “like you see on all platforms, this includes a variety of techniques to achieve the best overall quality”. Consequently, it put the onus on developers to “continue to improve their games on Stadia”.

“Stadia streams at 4K and 60 FPS – and that includes all aspects of our graphics pipeline from game to screen: GPU, encoder and Chromecast Ultra all outputting at 4k to 4k TVs, with the appropriate internet connection,” the company said. “Developers making Stadia games work hard to deliver the best streaming experience for every game. Like you see on all platforms, this includes a variety of techniques to achieve the best overall quality. We give developers the freedom of how to achieve the best image quality and framerate on Stadia and we are impressed with what they have been able to achieve for day one.

“We expect that many developers can, and in most cases will, continue to improve their games on Stadia. And because Stadia lives in our data centers, developers are able to innovate quickly while delivering even better experiences directly to you without the need for game patches or downloads.”

Google acknowledged “an issue” delayed the dissemination of invitation codes to early adopters of its streaming service, Stadia, which officially launched last week. In some cases, players have already received their packs but were unable to use it without the invitation code.  

Though the issue has purportedly only affected “a small fraction” of preorders, a number of customers reported that despite ordering the Founders’ Edition when preorders went live, orders were not shipped in order and they had yet to receive correspondence from Google inviting them to register their gamertag/nickname several days after launch – even though this was widely advertised as a perk of the Founder’s Edition. 

Just days before its launch, Google confirmed a number of key features originally detailed to early adopters of Google’s streaming subscription service will now be delayed. Further to a Reddit AMA with Google’s Andrey Doronichev and Beri Lee, it appears Stadia’s Founder’s Edition will now launch without achievement notifications, family share, or 4K streaming for PC. It’s also been confirmed that the much-publicised Buddy Pass – which enables players to gift access to a friend – will be delayed for approximately three months.

About Vikki Blake

It took 15 years of civil service monotony for Vikki to crack and switch to writing about games. She has since become an experienced reporter and critic working with a number of specialist and mainstream outlets in both the UK and beyond, including Eurogamer, GamesRadar+, IGN, MTV, and Variety.

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