> Why does this have to be so hard!?
Well, in part because they are using the console rather driving it programmatically; all the cloud platforms are optimized for programmatic/IAC rather than console operations.
And in part because Google Cloud (as opposed to AWS) has a segregated-projects, and activate-options approach to manage the scope of management surface and costs, whereas AWS (unless you create separate accounts) is more of “lump everything together”, and within an account is everything-default-on.
If there was a similar thing for AWS, while there might be some configuration needed, the “create a project” and “activate the API” processes probably wouldn’t be part of the basic instructions.