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Google explains why some Stadia titles aren’t in 4K after rocky launch

The launch of Google Stadia hasn’t been without its issues, with the company emerging to answer a number of fan complaints regarding the streaming service. 

Reports by Digital Foundry and other outlets have determined that a selection of titles on Google Stadia don’t run at the 4K resolution advertised ahead of release, and also fail to reach the visual fidelity you currently have on PS4 Pro and Xbox One X consoles. 

When players began speaking up about the lack of true 4K experiences on the platform, Google was quick to respond by saying developers have “freedom of how to achieve the best image quality and frame rate on Stadia.” Which can be interpreted as shifting the blame onto studios instead of offering a concrete solution. 

“We expect that many developers can, and in most cases will, continue to improve their games on Stadia,” Google said in its statement. “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.”

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Certain titles on the service such as Destiny 2 do boast 4K graphics, but are upscaled from an original 1080p resolution instead of outputting a genuine image. Visual settings are also set to ‘Medium’ according to analysis, which doesn’t reach the standard set by other platforms, or even a mid-range PC for that matter.

At the time of writing, the only way to gain access to Google Stadia is through its Premiere and Founders Edtions which include a controller, chromecast ultra and three months of Stadia Pro – a membership which itself costs £8.99 a month. From here you can purchase games or access a selection of free titles. A free version known as ‘Stadia Base’ is due to launch in 2020, although we’ll likely hear more details in the coming months.

“Google Stadia’s cloud-streaming service shows a lot of promise, and could be a great option for those who want to game without spending a fortune on a console. But with lots of missing features at launch, Stadia has a long way to go to become a serious challenger to PlayStation and Xbox,” reads our 3.5/5 review from Ryan Jones.

Here’s hoping there’s a brighter future ahead for Google Stadia after a rocky launch, since the underlying technology is genuinely fantastic. Google simply need to iron down its messaging and ensure it’s using the right tactics to hone in on the gaming audience. Since right now, it’s making a few too many missteps.

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