Earlier in the year, we learned that Google is struggling to get some developers and publishers on board with Stadia, leading to smaller than expected games library at this point. In an effort to target independent developers in particular, a new Stadia program is in place that should allow Google to work closer with studios.
The ‘Makers’ program is a new initiative for Stadia, with Google wanting to attract indie devs to self-publish on the platform. The program includes physical development kits, additional funding for projects and technical assistance for games being built on the Unity engine.
The Maker program does not require developers to launch their games exclusively on Stadia, but the cloud platform has to be part of the ‘day one’ launch. Developers also must be building their games in Unity 2019.3 or a newer version of the engine with plans to release before the end of 2021.
Developers that are interested do need to apply and apparently, Google is looking for ‘experienced’ developers, so it is unlikely that those working on their very first games will be accepted.
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KitGuru Says: It will be interesting to hear what independent developers think of this new program. Depending on the amount of funding involved, it could be good for a number of studios.