If you're stuck inside, one great way to pass the time is through gaming. But if you don't have a properly equipped gaming laptop (opens in new tab) or gaming desktop (opens in new tab), that may be difficult. Of course, the obvious answer is to build a PC (opens in new tab), but with some retailers, like Amazon showing shipping delays (here's how to buy PCs and parts that ship now), having another option can help. Google has taken notice of this, and decided that for the next two months, Stadia Pro (normally $9.99 a month) should be free.
Google noted in its announcement (opens in new tab)Wednesday that this for 14 countries around the world and will take a day or two to roll out. To subscribers, a total of nine games will be available for free, with more that you'll be able to purchase.
- Destiny 2: The Collection
- SteamWorld Dig 2
- SteamWorld Quest: Hand of Gilgamech
- Serious Sam Collection
- Stacks on Stacks (on Stacks)
If you're already a subscriber, then Google won't be charging you for the next two months either. Google Stadia works on desktops, as well as laptops, mobile devices and your TV through Google's own Chromecast device.
However, one thing to note is that amidst the COVID-19 breakout, the internet is a little congested (opens in new tab), so Google will be dropping the default game resolution down from 4K (opens in new tab)resolution to 1080p (opens in new tab). This will also help Google free up some capacity in its servers to deal with the increased user count that is bound to come from making the game streaming service free for some time.
In our Google Stadia review (opens in new tab) from November, when the service launched, we were not impressed by the library and noticeable input lag in some competitive games. But with gamers now having the chance to try it for free, stakes are less high. Alternatively, you can also look into Nvidia GeForce Now (opens in new tab), which has a free tier with hour-long sessions and a priced ($4.99 a month) Founders tier.