Since Stadia’s inception, State Share was planned to be one of its revolutionary, ‘game-changing’ features. Unfortunately, it was pretty much nowhere to be found when the service first launched. Even when it did finally show up, it was utilized in a pretty mediocre way. Although Stadia got a slow start in many people’s eyes, they’ve done a ton of work in their first year running to cement their place in the cloud gaming space. Beginning at the end of last year, they began rolling out a bunch of promised features. Things like Family Sharing, text-based messaging, and more. Oh yeah, don’t forget the games – to much surprise, they basically met their end-of-year games launch goal and have also stated that over 400 games will be present on the service over the next handful of years!
The launch of Hitman 3 on Stadia will give us a much more fully-realized vision of State Share. Product Manager for Stadia, Catherine Hsiao, says that the feature will finally be ‘brought to life’ and that it aims to let users share their favorite gaming experiences with others.
State Share turns a normal image or video capture into a portal to a unique game experience.
By embedding a game state within each capture, sharing gameplay for others to watch is transformed into a chance to try a playable slice of the game yourself. Each game state is defined by specific gameplay elements like player loadout, objectives, and difficulty, and trying each one is as easy as clicking a link.
State Share allows players to capture a unique ‘game state’ of a playable slice of the game itself, and share it with friends. These slices will include different gameplay elements such as the player’s current items, difficulty level, objectives, and more. All of this can be accessed via a simple URL or a game capture where the state share will be embedded. That is seriously cool!
For Hitman 3, here’s how that will look – share your campaign or custom mission to a capture, which can include the mission’s starting location, its objectives, the player’s loadout, and even the difficulty. Then, share that on social media or anywhere, really, since it’s just a link (see below). Your friends or anyone clicking the link will be able to jump straight into the game and take on all of these things as their own experience during their session – even if they have yet to get those specific weapons and such. The only stipulation is that they need to own the game they’re launching, of course. Luckily, the first two Hitman games are free with Stadia Pro, right now.
At the top right of your captures via the Stadia interface, you’ll see a little play button with a box around it. This icon will indicate which items can be shared as a playable scenario! It’s easy, it’s quick, it’s absolutely awesome. This is exactly what got me excited about Stadia in the first place, and now it’s finally rolling out. You can try out this new State Share approach beginning January 20 with the release of Hitman 3. It will also work in the two games that came before it – Hitman 1 and 2!
YouTubers will be able to share playable scenarios with their viewers, and competitive players can create a slice of their game to challenge others to match their score within the confines of their exact situation. It really does seem to have a lot of amazing uses and I can’t wait to see how it changes gaming as a whole. Regarding the use of State Share in other games, well, the Stadia team is providing the structure for it, but it’s up to developers to implement it. I have no doubt that after everyone sees what the Hitman trilogy does with it, they’ll want a playable slice of the pie themselves!