Google Stadia hasn't had the most impressive launch. While every video game console has some issues out of the gate, Google's first major foray into the video game industry has been fraught with problems. The latest comes courtesy of a new game released for Stadia this week: Borderlands 3. To be honest, though, Borderlands 3 isn't really a "new" game, as it's been out since September. Like Stadia, Borderlands 3 had some small issues at launch, but thankfully, many of those issues have been ironed out through patches. Well, they were on PC, Xbox One and PlayStation 4. Despite the wait, however, the Stadia release is actually the version that was made available on October 24th. Since then, the game has seen multiple patches.
It's hard to know whether or not Gearbox Software is to blame for the situation but, regardless, this is a bad look for Stadia. It's certainly not uncommon for ports to arrive later on other consoles, but for the game to arrive later and as an outdated version is simply unheard of, especially when Google wants to position Stadia as the "future" of gaming. In just one month's time, Stadia owners have had to deal with a fair number of problems, and now they're getting outdated versions of games, as well. To make matters worse, Borderlands 3 received its first DLC expansion today on PS4, Xbox One and PC; it's unknown when the Moxxi's Heist of the Handsome Jackpot DLC will arrive for Stadia owners beyond a vague "early 2020" release window.
Google doesn't seem to be the only company that sees streaming as the future of the industry. Amazon is allegedly poised to enter the video game streaming race, while Microsoft is preparing their own game streaming service for Xbox and Windows. The company has launched a preview of Project xCloud, but it's still in beta testing, and won't see an official release until sometime in the future. Stadia might have been the first to market, but Microsoft's slow and steady approach just might prove to be the best decision when it comes to streaming. At the very least, it might help them to avoid some of the same embarrassing missteps.