Google Stadia has been adding new games every month to convert regular players into cloud gamers. The company tried out free trials, discounts and even sent out free Stadia controllers to YouTube Premium subscribers not that long ago to encourage even more users to subscribe and try out the platform.
In a new attempt, Google Stadia is now offering a new way it could encourage gamers to join the platform (via 9to5Google). The new method allows any user to try out a select game for 30 minutes without paying a dime or providing credit information. The user needs to be logged in, so there are certainly other limitations to avoid abusing the system.
I have checked, the this also seems to work in the UK, so it’s not limited to the US only, and it may also work in other regions where Stadia is available. When you select a game (Hello Engineer is currently the only one supporting this), you’ll find a red “Play 30 min free” button. Once you start the game, a countdown will be shown in the Stadia sidebar, displaying how much time is remaining from the free trial period. Once the trial is up, you’ll see a prompt asking if you would like to purchase the game or subscribe to Stadia Pro, which would allow you to claim the game, and play it for “free” for as long as you’re subscribed.
A Google Engineer told TheVerge that Stadia will be experimenting with this new feature for the next few months, and that they plan on introducing more games with this new system. Interestingly, some of the games will differ based on user accounts, and some will have different times other than 30 minutes.
Personally, I feel like this feature should’ve been there from the beginning for 1-2 titles, allowing users to test out what’s possible with the next generation of cloud gaming platforms. Still, it’s better late than never to see this function appear and go live.