A wild Phil Harrison appears as part of the Gaming Awards and is still part of Stadia

Phil Harrison has been very quiet of late much to the displeasure to a number of people with the Stadia community. We can confirm today, thanks to Anderzz on Twitter, that Phil Harrison is very much still part of Stadia and is part of the advisory panel for the Gaming Awards hosted by Geoff Keighley. His title states that he is VP and GM. There had been some outcry if he was still at Stadia or had shifted to a different job within Google. It appears that he is very much still at Stadia.

Phil Harrison is listed alongside other notable people from the gaming world like Phil Spencer, Dr Lisa Su, Doug Bowser and Hideo Kojima. It is unknown if there will be any Stadia presence during the awards. Phil Harrison’s last significant appearance was during the Ubiforward Event in September last year that won moment of the year at our Cloud Gaming Awards.

Let us hope that this is the first of many appearance by Stadia personnel over the next number of months.

GeForce NOW – Guess who’s back? Back again. EAs back. Tell a friend.

A couple of months ago GeForce NOW said it was matter of when rather than if big publishers would come back to the service. Today they are following through with this as EA are coming back to GeForce NOW today. Today EA are adding 4 games to GeForce NOW and these games are Battlefield 1 Revolution, Mirror’s Edge Catalyst, Unravel Two, Dragon Age: Inquisition. These games are in addition to Apex Legends that is already on the service. This is a new partnership between NVIDIA and EA and more games are expected over the coming weeks and months. The games will be available via Steam and access via Origin is being worked on. We are led to believe that an EA Play subscription will work with GeForce NOW but will confirm this when the games go live.

Along with the partnership a number of stats have been provided by NVIDIA these include an updated figure of how many gamers are playing on GeForce NOW and this number now exceeds 12 million. 1 million people have played Apex Legends on GeForce NOW. Over 20 million hours of gameplay are streamed on the platform each month. 80% of the devices that access GeForce NOW could not access the games if the platform was not available be that phones, tablets or underpowered PCs. GeForce NOW is now available in over 70 countries including Brazil and Australia.

We have a video as we discuss the EA news below. Our normal GeForce Thursday show will still take place today at 8pm UK 3pm Eastern but felt this news needed an extra video!

On top of the EA News it is still GeForce NOW Thursday and we have 6 release day games, the EA games and the Epic Game Store free game. My pick of the new games is Hot Wheels Unleashed and we are giving away a copy of the game to our members on YouTube tonight during the show. Kelly and myself had a look at Hot Wheels and really enjoyed the game.

The full list of the games is

AWAY: The Survival Series (new game launch on Steam)
Lemnis Gate (new game launch on Steam)
The Eternal Cylinder (new game launch on Epic Games Store)
Hot Wheels Unleashed (new game launch on Steam and Epic Games Store)
INDUSTRIA (new game launch on Steam and Epic Games Store)
The Last Friend (new game launch on Steam and Epic Games Store)
Rogue Lords (new game launch on Steam and Epic Games Store)
Europa Universalis IV (free on Epic Games Store, September 30)
Battlefield 1 Revolution (Steam)
Dragon Age: Inquisition (Steam)
Mirror’s Edge Catalyst (Steam)
Unravel Two (Steam)
Rustler (Steam)
Tom Clancy’s Splinter Cell Blacklist (Ubisoft Connect)

What do you think of the news today?

GeForce NOW adds 12 more games

Welcome back to GeForce Now Thursday’s with the Cloudy team. This week focuses on the amazing people at Team 17 and their new titles coming to GFN, making their total 40 games.

Searching Team17 on GFN will bring up a myriad of titles across many genres. Escape prison in the hugely successful Escapists series (The Escapists is also the Epic Games Store free game of the week), wage war in the Western Front in the brutal Hell Let Loose, and test your faith in Blasphemous; a beautifully violent pixel art adventure set in a distant religious land with horrifying bosses and plenty of deaths. Oh, and who can forget Worms?

Games Coming This Week

5 day-and-date releases will be hitting the platform this week, including the highly-anticipated Kena: Bridge of Spirits. Alongside this, it’s time to manage survival after the apocalypse in Team17’s Sheltered 2. Want to manage your survival whilst armed to the teeth and running from a zombie horde? World War Z:  Aftermath has you covered.

Sheltered 2

The apocalypse has always been a nightmare scenario, but also makes a great video game. This one, however, isn’t here to make survival easy. Manage your group of survivors and create relationships with other factions. Whether that’s a positive or negative relationship is up to you. Just remember; no respawns allowed. Decisions are life or death, so choose wisely.

“It’s been twenty years since the world as we knew it ended. The last of humanity splintered into opposing factions. Will you unite or conquer? Building upon the original 2015 fan-favourite, Sheltered 2 brings new challenges and deeper strategic gameplay. You are tasked with creating a leader and building up your faction whilst managing resources and tackling threats both natural and human. Everything from starvation and dehydration to radiation poisoning and enemy raids can prove fatal.”

Sheltered 2 is available now through Steam. We will be having a playthrough of this on our YouTube channel soon so keep your eyes peeled.

Kena: Bridge of Spirits

Become Kena; a sprit guide in search of a sacred mountain shrine. Whilst exploring a forgotten village, you’ll encounter corrupted spirits that will be ready to fight at a moments notice. Build a team of Rot to help enhance abilities, whilst also using the spirit world to uncover the secrets of the abandoned village.

“A story-driven, action adventure combining exploration with fast-paced combat. As Kena, players find and grow a team of charming spirit companions called the Rot, enhancing their abilities and creating new ways to manipulate the environment.”

Kena: Bridge of Spirits is available now through the Epic Games Store.

Here’s a look at what else is coming this week:

  • Beyond Contact (day-and-date release on Steam, September 21)
  • Kena: Bridge of Spirits (day-and-date release on Epic Games Store, September 21)
  • Sheltered 2 (day-and-date release on Steam, September 21)
  • World War Z: Aftermath (day-and-date release on Steam, September 21)
  • Sable (day-and-date release on Steam and Epic Games Store, September 23)
  • The Escapists (free on Epic Games Store, September 23)
  • Darwin Project (Steam)
  • EVE Online (Epic Games Store)
  • Gas Station Simulator (Steam)
  • Miscreated (Steam)
  • Professional Fishing (Steam)
  • Zanki Zero: Last Beginning (Steam)

That’s a wrap for GFN Thursday! We’re heading into some of the biggest releases of the year as the year starts to come to a close, so expect plenty of surprises! As always, game on!

Sheltered 2 is out today and is headed to GeForce NOW!

Another day and another game heading to GeForce NOW on release day this time Sheltered 2. The follow-up to 2016 Sheltered this game is a survival game. The developers have implemented changes from the original like and have stated.

Boasting revamped combat systems, a new 3D art style, and punishing challenges, Sheltered 2 builds upon the original game, bringing new challenges, deeper strategic gameplay, and the perennial threat of extinction to the end of the world. With both internal and external hazards to overcome, the wasteland is a dangerous and unforgiving place to go alone, and as the faction leader, making sure resources are managed, survivors are fed and happy, and relationships with rival factions are maintained will be the key to surviving the punishing world of Sheltered 2.

  • Factions: The factions system allows players to forge relationships with other groups to provide their base with resources and support, or they can grab their weapons and take things the old-fashioned way
  • Resource Management: Players will balance the needs and wants of their survivors, manage scarce resources, craft items needed to maintain the shelter, cook meals, and build equipment to keep their group alive, and with the expanded power system players can generate energy in new ways
  • Faction Leader: New for Sheltered 2, the faction leader is the most important member of a shelter, boasting their own unique and powerful traits, the faction leader will be pivotal to success, with their death meaning game over
  • An Unforgiving Wasteland: Starvation, asphyxiation, extreme temperatures, and combat are just some of the challenges players will face in the harsh wasteland
  • Combat: In Sheltered 2 players will use a variety of skills coupled with the ability to build parties of four and targeting specific body parts on their enemies to deal the most visceral damage in combat situations. Each action performed also has a stamina cost, so strategy will be at the forefront of every altercation, each move critical in the balance of life and death
  • Characters: Survivors have their own personalities, traits, desires, and skills to acquire, and the ability to customise each individually means every faction member is unique.

The game is released later today with a launch price of £13.49/€17.99/$17.99 that is 10% off. The game will be available via GeForce NOW later today.

GeForce NOW enters beta September 22 for Australia

Good news for Aussie gamers as GeForce NOW enters beta on September 22. The beta will include access to the full GeForce NOW library that stands at over 1000 games and 94 free to play games. This will also include the same features as GeForce NOW including RTX, access to the different store fronts and playing games on different. It has been stated that they are looking to stress test over the beta program. What this means is that they want people playing games but also pushing the service to the limits! So go play the RTX enabled games to your hearts content.

The platform is run by Pentanet and they will be offering rewards for your account via cloud.gg.

Inside CloudGG, you’ll be able to complete Quests, gain Achievements and earn Multipliers on your account!

This is welcome expansion for cloud gaming as a whole. Australia has been one of the most vocal areas of wanting cloud gaming and this is great to see!

Darksiders 3 added to Stadia with a Pro discount

After been rumored for a long time it has now happened Darksiders 3 has arrived on Stadia and with a Pro discount. This is the third entry into the Darksiders franchise of games and follows Fury this time. Many long-time players of Darksiders did not think this game would be made as had been a long time coming out when it was released in 2018. Despite this many fans of the franchise were not too keen on the latest installment, myself included. The combat was changed from the last two games (this can be changed in the menu) and overall for me felt slightly under the other two games.

Return to an apocalyptic Earth in Darksiders III, a hack-n-slash Action Adventure where players assume the role of FURY in her quest to hunt down and dispose of the Seven Deadly Sins. The most enigmatic of the Four Horsemen, FURY must bring balance to the forces that now ravage Earth.

Hopefully, this opens the door for the original Darksiders to hit Stadia as it for me arguably is the best of the series.

Questions arise about the funding aspect of the Stadia Makers Program

The Stadia Makers Program in broad terms is a scheme to bring indie games to Stadia. This program was announced on March 23 2020 in partnership with Unity and was lauded at the time as a good thing for Stadia. As part of the Stadia Makers Program, they provided technical assistance, free hardware, and crucially funding. We have seen some fruit from the labors of this over the last year including Kaze and the Wild Masks, Tohu, Figment Creed Valley, and others.

It is our understanding after speaking to a number of indie game developers, who wish to remain anonymous, that the funding aspect of the Stadia Makers Program is scaled back or is no longer available. A number of developers have reported to us that when asked about the funding aspect of the Stadia Makers Program has been changed and they cannot receive funding. This has resulted in some developers lower the priority of the Stadia port of the game. For others, this has made them question bringing their game to the platform. While some games are still on track to come to Stadia.

We reached out to Stadia for comment and the Stadia spokesman said

The Stadia Makers program is still accepting applications through Stadia.dev/apply, which we’re actively working through. In addition, we’re currently busy supporting Makers partners in launching their games on Stadia, including Merek’s Market arriving on the Stadia store next week.”

Thursday September 9th

During our conversations with developers, we also discovered a number of 3rd party game projects and partnerships have been canceled from Stadia. These cancellations happened a number of months ago. Over the last week, we have learned that Tchia is no longer coming to Stadia and is heading to PlayStation. Following a tweet by Stadiasource’s Lee Reid, this may have been the case with Tchia.

We approached Stadia for comments about partnerships and the funding and were told that they cannot comment on individual business deals. This was an expected response.

The Stadia Makers Program is still available via Stadia.Dev.

Luna launches Luna Couch, Free games to play for Prime members, New Family Channel + Retro channel coming soon!

Luna has been quietly going about their business and today they have come out with a number of announcements. From a gaming perspective, the news channels and the games have a lot of potential. Luna has announced 36 new titles to the platform with the launch of their new Family channel and the new feature Luna Couch. Luna Couch allows you to play with a second player via the Luna website or app, even if they aren’t subscribed to the Luna+ channel. They have also announced a new channel coming soon called the Retro Channel, which is said to have titles from Atari, SNK, and other classic publishers. Please note Luna is still only mainland US Only.

Luna Couch allows people to play games together as long as one of the people playing has a Luna account (on selected games). These games can be co-op or full multiplayer titles. This will be a great way to get people to play together and could introduce a number of people to gaming. To set up the Luna Couch it appears to be relatively straightforward as you will be given a code to enter.

To enter a Luna Couch code, open Luna on a supported device, enter the code, and join. You can also visit http://www.amazon.com/luna/couch to enter the code on PC or Mac on a Chrome browser.

If you are a Prime Member you can check out Luna for free and have access to Resident Evil 7 biohazard Gold EditionMetro ExodusKatamari Damacy REROLL, and Monster Boy and the Cursed Kingdom. Also if you prime member you do not need to request access and can start a free 7-day trial to Luna + .

Luna currently has 3 channels and the prices of these are as follows:

Luna+: $5.99 USD/month Ubisoft+ : $14.99 USD/Month ($17.99/month starting Sept. 30th) Family Channel: $2.99 USD/Month

Titles getting added to the Family channel are (*Luna Couch compatible listed with an asterisk):

  • Beach Buggy Racing 2: Hot Wheels Edition*
  • Bee Simulator*
  • Bridge Constructor Portal
  • Buildings Have Feelings Too!
  • Death Squared*
  • DreamWorks Dragons: Dawn of New Riders
  • El Hijo — A Wild West Tale
  • Garfield Kart — Furious Racing*
  • Giana Sisters: Twisted Dreams*
  • Melbits World*
  • Momonga Pinball Adventures
  • Monster Truck Championship: Rebel Hunter Edition
  • Overcooked!*
  • PictoQuest
  • Pile Up! Box by Box*
  • Race The Sun
  • Skelittle: A Giant Party!!*
  • Smoots Summer Games*
  • Smoots World Cup Tennis*
  • Snake Pass
  • Space Otter Charlie*
  • Sparklite*
  • Spirit of the North
  • Spitlings*
  • SpongeBob SquarePants: Battle for Bikini Bottom — Rehydrated
  • Summer Paws
  • Super Kickers League Ultimate*
  • Super Mega Baseball: Extra Innings*
  • The Adventure Pals*
  • Tracks — Toybox Edition
  • TRANSFORMERS: BATTLEGROUNDS*
  • Trollhunters: Defenders of Arcadia*
  • Tumblestone*
  • Urban Trial Playground*
  • Wandersong
  • Yono and the Celestial Elephants

What other games and new channels do you think they might add next? Comment below.

Darkwood is now available on Stadia

We have a second game on Stadia today in the survival horror game Darkwood. This game was rated a couple of weeks ago and it has made its way to Stadia. The game started life in Early Access on Steam in 2014 before moving onto a full release in 2017. The game has very positive reviews on Steam.

Darkwood – a new perspective on survival horror. Scavenge and explore a rich, ever-changing free-roam world by day, then hunker down in your hideout and pray for the morning light.

Will you be picking this up?

Katamari Damacy REROLL now available on Stadia

Stadia have today added Katamari Damacy REROLL to the platform and it is on sale priced at £5.27. The game has generally received good scores on Metacritic and is also a bit of a cult classic. This is a welcome addition to the Stadia catalog and a number of people have expressed their delight at the game making its way onto Stadia.

The stop-at-nothing pushing prince is back and ready to reroll! When the King of All Cosmos accidentally destroys all the stars in the sky, he orders you, his pint-sized princely son, to put the twinkle back in the heavens above. Join the King and Prince of Cosmos on their wacky adventure to restore the stars – now in full HD!

The beloved roll-em-up game returns with fully updated graphics, completely recreated cutscenes and in full HD!

Are you going to pick this up?