An exhibition of historic Stadia gaming failures is now on eBay
Outside of the 2019 Game Developers Conference, before anyone has ever heard the phrase “Google Stage”, the game history was displayed on a small display. Dates and markers have marked some important events, and three of the industry’s most infamous failures have sat on three pedestals: ETMattel NES Power Glove and Dreamcast from Sega. The fourth pedestal was empty except for for a card with the inscription “soon”. Just over three years later, Stadia, Google’s cloud-based streaming console, has finally taken its place on that fourth podium, and the curator who created the original piece is now getting ready to auction it off.
“Remember when Google Stadia had this GDC display where they placed it next to three of the most famous flops in gaming history?” Founder and co-director of the Video Game History Foundation, Frank Cifaldi. tweeted yesterdaysoon after Google announced the closure of Stadia. “Now you can recreate this display at home! I provided the originals for the exhibition, and now I’m selling them for charity.” The current bid on eBay is $1,525, with only six days left until the end of the auction. All proceeds go to Video Game History Foundation.
“Honestly, I put these items in a separate bin in the warehouse right after the GDC just for this purpose,” Cifaldi said. Kotaku by email. “The idea for this auction came to me during the exhibition, and I patiently waited. Okay, I’m a vulture, but at least for a good cause?
Does it come bundled with a Stadia controller? No, and Cifaldi was tired of questions. “I don’t have Stadia, no one has Stadia, if they had, we wouldn’t be here profiting from their misfortune,” he tweeted.
It was never clear what message Google intended to send with the strange display. Atari helped bring down the gaming industry in the early 1980s and ET was so bad that it became a legend for be buried in the desert by a truck. The power glove was a classic (and literal) example of reach over grip: a neat idea that was ahead of its time and had no real use other than cool moment in the 1989 movie Master. And then there was the Sega Dreamcast, redesigned, but wonderful system with some amazing games that only sold 10 million units and sadly ended Sonic manufacturer’s console manufacturing business.
“[The exhibit] went through what seemed to be several committees and decision makers who all disagreed with each other, they completely changed direction about a week before the show and by the end it was a hodgepodge of two completely different concepts, a “timeline”. innovation in game consoles” and “collectibles that people will take selfies next to,” Cifaldi explains in the description of the eBay auction. “The details don’t really matter, what matters here in the end is that it wasn’t my fault.”
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Although this trial was one of many bad omens, the exhibition certainly caught people’s attention. “I have no idea where this is going, but I’m intrigued #GoogleGDC19”, – gaming insider Nibel. tweeted when the exhibit was shown at the time. Since then, photographs of the exhibition have appeared from time to time as evergreen gaming memeespecially when it became clear that the only thing that matched Google’s ambition was its arrogance.
“When they finally presented [Stadia] at the GDC (I was not instructed as part of the help with this exhibition) it seemed to me a solution in search of a problem, ”said Cifaldi. “For example, their client is a hardcore gamer who will buy a $60 AAA game that takes a significant amount of time to complete and they pay for high speed internet, but they won’t buy a Switch or Series S? Who is this man?”
But the game historian was quick to point out that while Stadia remains the butt of many jokes, his heart goes out to all the game developers out there right now. abrupt closure of the platform. “I have a friend whose entire business is in jeopardy because he made financial plans around the income that Stadia promised him when his game was supposed to launch,” Cifaldi said. “He invested time and money into the game with that in mind, and now it’s just not going to happen.”
He continued, “I hope they take care of the partners they burn, but if not, I hope the industry remembers how it happened when Google inevitably tries to re-enter the gaming business in three or four years.”