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Stadia: Google announces pricing, games and November launch date

By Wade Sheridan

June 6 (UPI) -- Google announced on Thursday the pricing models and video games coming to their upcoming, streaming game platform named Stadia, which will launch in November.

The service will launch in the United States, United Kingdom, Canada, France, Germany, Ireland, Spain, Italy, Belgium, Finland, Denmark, Netherlands, Norway and Sweden in November with more countries set to be added in 2020.

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Stadia will allow users to purchase games individually to play while also offering a Stadia Pro subscription service, Google said during a livestreamed Stadia Connect presentation.

Stadia Pro will cost $9.99 a month and allows users to play games up to 4K resolution and at 60 frames per second along with 5.1 surround sound. The subscription also offers additional free games that Google says will be released regularly starting with Destiny 2 and will give discounts on select game purchases. The subscription will not grant access to all games as some will still need to be purchased.

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Not signing up for Stadia Pro places users under Stadia Base which will arrive next year. Stadia Base will require users to purchase games and will allow them to play the titles up to 1080p resolution and 60 frames per second with stereo sound.

Google is offering a Founder's Edition for $129 that comes with three months of Stadia Pro, three months of Stadia Pro that can be gifted to a friend, a Night Blue Stadia Controller, a Google Chromecast Ultra to play Stadia on a television, and first access to create a Stadia account name. The Founder's Edition, which is up for pre-order, will arrive in November.

The Stadia controller will come in white, black and a color titled wasabi and retail for $69. The Stadia controller features a capture button to upload footage to YouTube and a Google Assistant button that can help players figure how to solve a touch puzzle or section in a game.

Google also announced a number of games that are coming to Stadia including Mortal Kombat 11, Ghost Recon: Breakpoint, The Division 2 and Baldur's Gate 3, which was announced for the first time during the presentation.

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The livestream featured the world premiere of upcoming Destiny 2 expansion titled Shadowkeep. Stadia Pro subscribers will be given the full version of Destiny 2 including Shadowkeep and the game's other expansions.

Other titles shown during a montage video included Dragon Ball Xenoverse 2, Final Fantasy XV, the Tomb Raider trilogy and Just Dance 2020, among many others. They join a list of previously announced games such as Doom Eternal and Assassin's Creed Odyssey.

Google said that more Stadia Connect presentations will be livestreamed from time to time throughout the year.

Stadia, first announced in March, is not a dedicated console like the PlayStation 4 or Xbox One, but rather a cloud-based platform which will allow users to play a variety of games through streaming.

The games can be accessed over the internet across desktop computers, laptops, televisions, tablets and phones, however, Stadia will only be available to play on a television through Chromecast when it launches. More playable devices and the ability to use any USB controller along with mouse and keyboards will come at a later date.

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Google has said that Stadia is powered by it's data centers that are located worldwide and that there would be no sacrifice to the graphical fidelity of games while streaming.

The company said an internet connection of at least 35 Mbps will allow games to played at 4K resolution and 60 frames per second. The recommended minimum internet speed is 10 Mbps which will allow games to be played at 720p resolution at 60 frames per second.

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