According to Gamedeveloper.com, Google Stadia is now testing a new feature with its click-to-play game trials. Instead of just and only playing until the timer expires (these are normally 60-120 minutes depending on the game), you can now play until you’ve unlocked a certain achievement.
This achievement milestone is of course determined by the game’s developer, and will likely be placed at a nice early point in the game so as to not give away too much of the experience for free. The Stadia team confirmed that these achievement-based trials are still time-constrained, so it’s like your car’s oil change – you go in to have it done every 3,000 miles or every 3 months. Whatever comes first, right? In the case of Stadia, it would seem that your Click-to-Play trial will end when you reach the designated time limit or when you’ve unlocked the achievement determined by the game’s creators – again, whichever comes first.
“Giving development teams an effective opportunity to hone in on those impactful, memorable moments with new players is an exciting experiment for us,” he said, “especially when it takes zero effort for the developer to switch on.”Karen Arora, Stadia Senion Product Manager via Gamedeveloper.com
Remedy Entertainment’s Control (60-minute trial), as well as Sniper Elite 4 (90-minute trial) are both showing that achievements are tied into the trial as a metric in early testing, and again, only with about half of the platform’s users. This is called an A/B test, which basically just means that half of the users are a control group, while the other half is being used for an experiment. If the feedback on this new feature turns out to be positive, it will likely become a core part of Stadia’s offerings.
A really cool implementation of this system that we could see in the future is a Roleplaying game that lets you reach level 20 or so before cutting off your access to the demo and asking you to pay for the full experience. Another idea is to begin the gameplay at level 100 so that gamers who want to experience all that the title has to offer and live out their power fantasy before buying it and starting from the bottom of the totem pole can do so.