Google releases a Founder's Edition to mark inaugural Stadia Connect
Google held its first Stadia Connect today (June 6, 2019) to announce more details on its new cloud-gaming service prior to its actual launch. This event will take place in November 2019. In the meantime, and despite the company's assertion that the "future of gaming" does not come in a box, there is a preview of what Stadia will physically consist of available to pre-order online now.
It is called the Stadia Founder's Edition; however, unlike most other products that go by that name, no GPUs are included. Instead, the buyer gets one of the new, Google Assistant-enabled Stadia Controllers, in an exclusive shade called Night Blue. It is accompanied by a Chromecast Ultra, with which a player may be able to stream Stadia's up-to-4K gameplay.
Google has also released details on its new system's pricing structure. One option is Stadia Pro, which is a US$9.99-a-month service (3 month's free of which is included with each 'FE' bundle). For this, the customer gets to crank the gameplay up to the aforementioned 4K, which will run at up to 60fps and stream with 5.1 surround sound.
Alternatively, the user can access the fee-free Stadia Base; unfortunately, this option will not be available until next year. It bumps the maximum possible resolution of games on the platform down to 1080p, and the audio quality to stereo.
As to what can be played on either of these Stadia tiers, their full list was also revealed today. A range of desirable titles have made it here, from Dragonball Xenoverse to Mortal Kombat 11. However, the new service also has some exclusives already: Gylt by Tequila Works and Coatsink's Get Packed.
As it turns out, they will retail on Stadia as digital entities, just as on any other store. However, Stadia Pro users will get regular access to free games, the first of which will be Bungie's Destiny 2, as well as tier-specific discounts on more games over time.
The Stadia Founder's Edition's current pre-order price is US$129.99. However, as Google itself maintains, you don't necessarily need it - or any hardware you don't already have - to play.