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Gamers say goodbye to Google’s Stadia as platform shuts

Google will shut down its Stadia cloud-gaming service in the UK on Thursday, as it issues refunds to gamers.

Stadia was touted as a “Netflix for games” when it launched, in November 2019, allowing players to stream games online without a PC or console.

The service will be inaccessible after 08:00 on 19 January in the UK, with gamers telling BBC News they are “heartbroken” to see it go.

Google has promised refunds to anyone who made Stadia purchases.

That includes people who bought controllers, games or downloadable content, with Google previously estimating those refunds would be completed by mid-January.

Google has marked the closure by releasing one final Stadia game, Worm Game, which the developers used to test the service before its public release.

It has also unveiled plans to make its Stadia controllers capable of using Bluetooth, which would allow them to be used on PCs wirelessly to play any game, even after Stadia’s closure.

Google said in September it was shutting Stadia because it “hadn’t gained the traction with users” the company had hoped.

But fans have reacted with sadness, with many pointing out some games developed exclusively to be played on Stadia could be lost forever once the service closes.

Splash Damage, a London-based developer that made multiplayer game Outcasters, said last year it had no plans to bring the game elsewhere.

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