Phil Harrison openly lied to the developers of the Google Stadia exclusives before the Stadia Games and Entertainment studios closed.
Earlier this month, Google decided to close the studios Stadia Games and Entertainment based in Montreal and Los Angeles in order to stop the costs in the production of first-party games intended for the cloud gaming platform of the American giant. A surprising decision for many developers since Phil Harrison congratulated himself on the work of the internal teams a few days before the end of an adventure which did not have time to take shape: “ We’ve made great strides in building a talented and diverse team and in creating a strong catalog of exclusive Stadia games. We will quickly confirm the investment envelope for the studios, which will inform our strategy as well as the objectives and the expected results for 2021. “
They also learned the bad news at the same time as everyone else … They had to wait three days to directly share their confusion and frustration with Phil Harrison, vice president and general manager of Google Stadia, when a conference call. During this exchange, the former executive of Sony and Microsoft said he knew the ax was going to fall. If the many financial investments did not scare the company headed by Sundai Pichar, the COVID-19 pandemic was one of the factors that led to this sad situation with the takeover of Zenimax Media by the Redmond firm for 7, $ 5 billion. He regrets his way of doing things, but it was not possible for him to do otherwise.
Time wasted for Google Stadia
For some developers , the studio shutdown and the way it was communicated to staff was emblematic of the mismanagement of game development at Google . These included a severe lack of resources, difficulty obtaining the necessary hardware and software, and a workforce freeze throughout 2020 following the onset of the pandemic, despite the aim to ship several original exclusives in the coming years: “ We just wanted an explanation from the management. If you start a studio and recruit hundreds of people, it’s impossible to start like that in just one year. You cannot play a game within this time limit. We had insurance for several years, and then ultimately no. “