Google Stadia might one day play games for you to achieve 'negative latency'

Platforms: Google Stadia
Google Stadia might one day play games for you to achieve 'negative latency'

“Ultimately, we think in a year or two we’ll have games that are running faster and feel more responsive in the cloud than they do locally, regardless of how powerful the local machine is.” - Madj Bakar, Google

Google's Madj Bakar has been speaking to Edge Magazine regarding their plans for Google Stadia going forward and their intention to make it more responsive than having an actual console in your living room - a lofty claim and one that Bakar is attributing to the idea of negative latency; that is Stadia guessing what you're going to do before you do it.

The idea is that the platform would predict your next action - a gun shot, a movement or some other action - and then proceed with the rendering based on it's machine learning driven decision. It all sounds nice and futuristic until you consider the fact that once this starts happening games will progress in certain ways regardless of what you actually do. What would happen if Stadia makes one assumption and you do the opposite?

Games require lightning fast responses from the player by pre-guessing what the gamer is going to do could result in non-intended actions happening in the games. What sounds like a great technical solution could have significant implications for gameplay giving some an unfair advantage and others a disadvantage - especially in online play.

While we applaud Google's plans to reduce latency and increase responsiveness it shouldn't be at the expense of gamers control over what happens on screen.

There are other methods of lag mitigation being considered and developed for the platform - including varying the fps rapidly in response to reduce latency and things like this are far more palatable.

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