As we approach fall 2020, the gaming release schedule should soon be heating up ahead of the holiday period. August 2020 has seen Stadia prepare to hit the ground running ahead of time, while more games have hit the service too!
About Stadia ‘Save State’: This is our overview of all the updates, upgrades, and potential pitfalls for Google’s game streaming platform over the previous month. We also decompile the latest versions of the Stadia application and dig into the code online to better understand where Stadia is headed. Expect opinion, information, and speculation on all things Google Stadia, the games, and everything in-between.
August new releases
Another month, another series of new titles to sink your teeth into. There is a real lull in “new” games though ahead of the usual late-fall rush ahead of the holiday season. So as it appears to be customary, it looks like some re-runs and re-releases of older titles for Stadia in August 2020.
Golf fans can rejoice as the spiritual successor to Tiger Woods PGA Tour — and briefly Rory McIlroy PGA Tour — from the team at 2K is now available. It allows you to take to the links and shank a few into some of the most iconic courses and events on the prestigious yearly golfing series.
The third game in the slow-moving, freeze-frame FPS Superhot is also available. Superhot: Mind Control Delete brings you yet more intriguing FPS action to tackle with its unique art style and impressive scoring system. Overall, August 2020 saw a paltry total of five new titles hit Stadia including:
- Spiritfarer is a cozy management game about dying. As ferrymaster to the deceased, build a boat to explore the world, care for your spirit friends, and guide them across mystical seas to finally release them into the afterlife. What will you leave behind?
- Doom (2016)
- You’ve come here for a reason. The Union Aerospace Corporation’s massive research facility on Mars is overwhelmed by fierce and powerful demons, and only one person stands between their world and ours. As the lone DOOM Marine, you’ve been activated to do one thing – kill them all.
- Rock of Ages 3: Make and Break
- Rock of Ages 3: Make & Break is competitive tower defense and arcade action rolled up with ACE Team’s quirky, Monty Python-esque humor into one giant, creative game for the ages.
- PGA Tour 2K21
- Play against the pros. Play with your crew. In PGA TOUR 2K21, you can play by the rules or create your own. Featuring an all-new PGA TOUR Career Mode with licensed courses and 12 licensed pros to compete against in your quest for the FedExCup. Create your dream course with our deep course creator to share with other players and run your own clubhouse with Online Societies.
- Superhot: Mind Control Delete
- The third game in the SUPERHOT franchise – MIND CONTROL DELETE gives you more insight into the world of SUPERHOT, more story, more signature gameplay. Keep dancing the slow-motion ballet of destruction for so much longer than ever before.
Stadia Pro: Upcoming games for September
Stadia Pro members will get a total of six games as part of their premium membership for September 2020. The “free” titles as part of your monthly subscription fee will include the following from September 1, 2020:
- Super Bomberman R Online
- Hello Neighbor
- Metro Last Light Redux
It’s definitely worth remembering to claim your August titles too. You can get Just Shapes & Beats, Strange Brigade, Metro 2033 Redux, Kona, plus Rock of Ages 3: Make and Break.
Compared to a single game departure back in July, this month sees three titles leave the Pro tier: Kona, GRID, and Get Packed. The count will now stand at 26 titles after these additions and subtractions:
GYLT, Destiny 2: The Collection, SteamWorld Dig 2, SteamWorld Quest: Hand of Gilgamech, SteamWorld Dig, SteamWorld Heist, PLAYERUNKNOWN’S BATTLEGROUNDS, The Turing Test, Superhot, Little Nightmares, Power Rangers: Battle for the Grid, Panzer Dragoon: Remake, West of Loathing, Monster Boy and the Cursed Kingdom, Crayta, Orcs Must Die! 3, Strange Brigade, Metro 2033 Redux, Just Shapes & Beats, Rock of Ages 3: Make and Break, Super Bomberman R Online, Gunsport, Hitman, Hello Neighbor, Metro Last Light Redux, and Embr
Google Stadia: New features added in August 2020
4K HDR support for Android TV
Although not officially available on Android TV yet — as of August 2020 — Stadia added 4K HDR support for “any” devices that support the enhanced visual mode. With almost no smartphones and tablets that include 4K HDR support, this is clearly intended for TV sets or monitors. Under the “Performance” section of Stadia’s settings, there’s a toggle for turning on 4K support as well as HDR support on your device.
Stadia controllers now work with Android TV
The Stadia 2.26 build for Android can be sideloaded on Android TV for semi-support with the streaming platform but now it’s easier than it was to play thanks to proper Stadia gamepad support. Instead of breaking out a mouse to scroll down to the game you want to play and press the start button, you can do so with your controller.
It’s a bit of pain to get to some UI elements, but the orange selector works well enough to where you can access every menu and setting within the Stadia app using just a joystick or D-pad. This may seem minor, but it was an important roadblock for Stadia to get around to make its Android TV experience worthwhile.
Apple confirms Stadia won’t be allowed on iOS
Apple being Apple? Well, color us surprised. The Cupertino tech giant confirmed that these services are in violation of App Store policy and, as a result, cannot exist on the company’s wildly popular iPhone or iPad. As ridiculous as this sounds, it also affects xCloud, and GeForce Now. However, you can still use the Stadia iOS app to manage your game library and cast to specific devices — so not a complete bust.
Stadia Achievements now viewable on iOS and Android
A month after launch, Stadia picked up the ability to view game Achievements online and on Chromecast. The streaming service logged awards from day one, but an interface wasn’t ready until December. Stadia Achievements are now fully viewable on the Android and iOS apps.
Like on the web, Achievements are accessed by tapping the People icon and selecting any profile. The main list provides a summary of how many awards you’ve earned, and how many are available in total (excluding secret ones).
As is customary, we’ve spent some time delving into the Google Stadia Android app to find out what upcoming and experimental features will likely be heading to the platform soon. Here are the biggest upcoming or most notable additions to Google Stadia that we found in August 2020:
Stadia private messaging
Stadia 2.29 looks like more prep is underway for private messaging, which will be a much-needed feature for keeping in touch with friends in-game. We’ve spotted strings that hint at the ability to resend a message if it doesn’t go through, as well as to receive notifications for new messages.
This feature has been sort-of available already but for select titles like the Destiny 2: Beyond Light expansion, but we have found real evidence of a proper pre-order mechanic for Stadia coming to a future update. When available you’ll be able to pre-order a game but won’t actually be charged until the game actually launches.
Crowd Play is a long-awaited feature that we hoped would have come much earlier than almost 10 months after release. It is coming exclusively with Super Bomberman R Online. It will let streamers send a direct game invite using a State Share-like link that lets people join with a link shared on YouTube while they are streaming.
Our latest Google Stadia reviews
Games announced for Google Stadia in August 2020
Looking ahead, we’re a long way from a “large” library of game titles to choose from, but there were quite a few announcements of games coming to Stadia in the future throughout August. We’re expecting yet more over the coming weeks ahead of the fall 2020 release rush too.
Here’s the full list of games joining Stadia with release timeframes where noted:
- Marvel Avengers — September 1, 2020
- Baldur’s Gate 3 — September 30, 2020
- Just Dance 2021
- Doom Eternal – The Ancient Gods
What have you been playing on Google Stadia throughout August 2020?
Are you an avid Stadia player? Let us know what you’ve been enjoying on the platform throughout the month. Also what are you looking forward to the most? Let us know down in the comments section below.
More on Google Stadia:
- Doom is now available for Google Stadia
- Stadia ‘State of Play’ July 2020: This month in Google Stadia [Video]
- Google adds six Stadia Pro games for September 2020
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