Google has reportedly hired three former Assassin's Creed developers to make Google Stadia-exclusive games. Google first announced their new game development company, the Stadia Games and Entertainment division, back in March 2019, pointing to interest in creating first-party titles.
After a long period of speculation, hype, and doubt, Google's Stadia Pro release finally arrived in mid-November. The game streaming service was met with a mostly negative reception. Google Stadia reviews found it lacked important features and a compelling reason to make the switch from traditional consoles - and in some cases, it just didn't work at all. Of course, much of this was forecasted before Stadia's launch in places such as a strange Stadia Reddit AMA, which revealed odd omissions such as the need of a Stadia phone app to purchase games for other platforms.
According to a report by TheGamer, Google has picked up a number of former Assassin Creed developers, including their new studio lead Jade Raymond. Raymond has previously been the executive producer for Assassin's Creed 2 and other Ubisoft titles, and it seems she was able to bring in more talent from that company. Three more key Assassin's Creed development figures have since joined Stadia's Montreal studio, according to their social media accounts: Sébastien Puel as general director, Francois Pelland as head of production operations for first-party game strategy, and Mathieu Leduc as art director. Puel had previously been senior executive producer at Ubisoft Montreal, while Leduc was art director and Pelland was project lead of the UPLAY+ subscription service.
With four industry veterans behind the Montreal Stadia studio - especially four who have been involved with franchises as successful as Assassin's Creed - there's certainly potential for Stadia to turn its early failures around. One of the main complaints reviewers had with the service was its lack of compelling titles, and Stadia's only exclusive game at launch, Gylt, didn't feel worth the price of admission.
Perhaps the might of Raymond, Puel, Pelland, and Leduc can eventually create something gamers will feel is alluring enough to convince them to try out Google's streaming service. It all comes back to a question many reviewers have had, however: Why now, Google? It's odd the company is taking these development-focused steps after the platform's critically-botched launch, a move which is only adding to the feeling Stadia came out long before it was ready. Still, the Stadia Founder's Edition sold out everywhere, so hopefully Google was able to build up enough of a base profit to make important improvements to the Stadia service, like exclusive games and more fleshed-out features.