Microsoft Fails PC Gamers

Is Microsoft Trying to Kill PC Gaming?

When Microsoft started talking up Vista's gaming functionality, PC gamers got all hot and bothered. There it was, laid out in front of us, the holy land of DX10 graphics, and an entire "Games for Windows" marketing program. It couldn't possibly get any better, as our PC gaming world was obviously not dying, and Microsoft was apparently not going to give up on us, expecting us all to move over to consoles, right?

If Microsoft's current PC gaming efforts are any indication, we're all very wrong in that assumption. Judging by the lackluster game releases and the attempt to suck the blood from PC gamers with "Games for Windows Live," it starts feeling like Microsoft is doing all it can to actually kill PC gaming.

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Why does Microsoft think that we PC users will PAY for Windows Live?

We have:

Xfire = FREE
Steam = FREE
Gamespy = FREE (But Bloatware)

How can they think that this will take off. Xbox users pay for live because they have no alternative.
We definitely won't pay for it.

Every major PC FPS (Quake based, Unreal based) = Free Online play

The *Only* monthly fee where pc's pay willingly are MMO (Wow, Everquest, etc), but GuildWars have shown that a non-paid model can work as well.

B0GiE said,
Why does Microsoft think that we PC users will PAY for Windows Live?

That's because MS management are a bunch of latte-drinking, ivory tower, MBA white collar crooks who spend all day devising ways of "maximizing profits" without ever considering what it means to customers.

That is another term for "how can we squeeze every last penny out of these stupid kids?"

MS doesn't support gaming, they look at gaming as a product, rather than look at individual games.

Take Shadowrun, for example. Instead of making it an RPG, which it started out as and could have made a good game, they used the franchise as a cheap excuse for their own Counterstrike clone to peddle Vista.

Why Counterstrike? Look at how well STEAM is doing. In between drinking blood, Steve Ballmer took one look at "the most popular online games" and saw Counterstrike at #1. So he ordered his goons to "make me a Counterstrike clone! And put elves in it, because WoW is so popular!"

MS is pathetic. They're even worse than EA.

yeah and in a future if microsoft start charging for windows live messenger and their services people will pay for it, its all about microsoft branding, it suppose to give quality and the best experience but so far its disappointing

B0GiE said,
Why does Microsoft think that we PC users will PAY for Windows Live?

We have:

Xfire = FREE
Steam = FREE
Gamespy = FREE (But Bloatware)

How can they think that this will take off. Xbox users pay for live because they have no alternative.
We definitely won't pay for it.

Who said you have to? If you look at the base membership (GfWL Silver) you will see that it (like XBL Silver) in fact costs $0.00 (as in "nada, zip, zero, bupkis, gornischt"). Most X360 owners (and original XBOX owners) don't have XBL Gold (the paid membership); instead, they are perfectly happy with XBL Silver (which, like the cross-compatible GfWL Silver, has no fees). Get your facts straight, people.

B0GiE said,
Why does Microsoft think that we PC users will PAY for Windows Live?

We have:

Xfire = FREE
Steam = FREE
Gamespy = FREE (But Bloatware)

How can they think that this will take off. Xbox users pay for live because they have no alternative.
We definitely won't pay for it.

Are you speaking for the entire PC gaming fanbase? If you are trying to, then stop--you are wrong. There are thousands of people out there who are already subscribed. If you have an Xbox Live account, you're already subscribed to it, and I would say a good 70% of the people who play on Xbox Live also do some kind of PC gaming.

well microsoft NEVER did anything to make pc gaming a viable option thats why they are dedicated to xbox360, i dont see any changes they was trying to make gamers to move on to vista but so far its failing miserably

eilegz said,
well microsoft NEVER did anything to make pc gaming a viable option thats why they are dedicated to xbox360, i dont see any changes they was trying to make gamers to move on to vista but so far its failing miserably

Guess there was no point in making DirectX in the first place with you comment. Its alot easier writing a 3D Program with all the DirectX functions that wrap up lots of common tasks in programing. Not saying OpenGL is bad. But at one point in time it wasn't the best.

WOW subscribers :7 million
Lineage2 subscribers : 2.25 million.
Mapple Story players :50 million!! (not all are active player).
Steam accounts : 13 millions (not all are potential buyers) but i bet that there are more CS players that in Halo.
Runescape subscribers: 1 million.
Ragnarok Online :17 million! eh?
Final Fantasy Online : 0.5 million.


Versus:
XBOX live subscribers : 5 million (lol).


Results:
XBOX live is overhyped, MS is indeed trying to kill the pc gaming online but (currently) they are being beated by death. In fact there are a mere 7-8 million of console versus a gazillion of pc.

It's not a numbers race.

They recognize that people want to have some of the features that gamers get with Xbox LIVE.

It offers them a way to give people that functionality as well as a selling point for Windows Vista.

Of course there are more PC "gamers", it's been around a lot longer.

Console games haven't been online (I'm talking big services, not just one or two games) that long - about 5 years.

It's not in Microsoft's interest to kill PC gaming online - it's a key selling point of their platform versus Mac OS and Linux.

It's something people see the PC as being known for.

The non-LIVE efforts should be praised by gamers. It makes buying a game a much more satisfying experience.

LIVE on the other hand, is new. They are merging a well established service with a new, untried service. Expect there to be problems.

Magallanes said,
WOW subscribers :7 million
Lineage2 subscribers : 2.25 million.
Mapple Story players :50 million!! (not all are active player).
Steam accounts : 13 millions (not all are potential buyers) but i bet that there are more CS players that in Halo.
Runescape subscribers: 1 million.
Ragnarok Online :17 million! eh?
Final Fantasy Online : 0.5 million.


Versus:
XBOX live subscribers : 5 million (lol).


Results:
XBOX live is overhyped, MS is indeed trying to kill the pc gaming online but (currently) they are being beated by death. In fact there are a mere 7-8 million of console versus a gazillion of pc.


By that logic you'd have to count the number of each different game sold on the 360 instead of the installed Live base. A better estimate would be Steam, which has one application that brings together a collection of products. It would be nice to have Live built like an addon into the current PC online model. If you had Live, all your stats/achievements would record and you'd get the other Live additions. On the other hand, if you didn't want to use Live, you'd have the core online component without hassle. Anyway, I haven't tried Halo 2 PC, so I don't really know what's going on.

Also, everyone who has a 360 is going to have a PC and that means only a small fraction of PC users have any console at all.

Even though I don't really play any games on my PC anymore, I see GfWL as something you could ignore if you really wanted to. Now hopefully they'll offer some kind of alternative if your game is GfWL and you don't want to shell out $5/month, but I don't see all games having GfWL. Plus what if you could have PC only titles that used GfWL that didn't have a console brother. Something like PC only achievements. I like the Live service, it's why I got a Xbox over a PS2 years ago, but I don't think it needs to regulated to the console space. Personally...I'm a big fan of cross game voice chat, achievements (no matter how easy or stupid they may be), a unified marketplace, etc. I just hope they do PC gaming right and can expand the Live system without ruining the core aspects of what makes PC online fun.

well what bothers me is that every game capable of running in vista and xp, will always run better in vista due to lower overhead. its not the gamers platform. dx10 very well could run under xp, if they wanted it too. the windows Live service could also run under xp, if they wanted it too. but instead of doing whats good for the consumer they limit usage to the new OS to force peple to upgrade to an OS that is buggy and less efficient then the old standard.

i dont think MS has any idea what the gaming community wants. but to say they are PURPOSELY trying to kill pc games is plain stupid. there is money to be made in pc gaming. its not nearly as much as console gaming, but its a market none the less.

Nose Nuggets said,
well what bothers me is that every game capable of running in vista and xp, will always run better in vista due to lower overhead. its not the gamers platform. dx10 very well could run under xp, if they wanted it too. the windows Live service could also run under xp, if they wanted it too. but instead of doing whats good for the consumer they limit usage to the new OS to force peple to upgrade to an OS that is buggy and less efficient then the old standard.

i dont think MS has any idea what the gaming community wants. but to say they are PURPOSELY trying to kill pc games is plain stupid. there is money to be made in pc gaming. its not nearly as much as console gaming, but its a market none the less.

I wouldn't say Vista is buggy. Everything I want to do on there works perfectly and I produce music, create webpages and such. The big problem I see are program compatibility and driver issues, which XP had when it first came out. I do agree that Dx10 could most likely run under XP but you know how the world of business works, we bend and they stick....lol

(V)eGa said,
I wouldn't say Vista is buggy. Everything I want to do on there works perfectly and I produce music, create webpages and such. The big problem I see are program compatibility and driver issues, which XP had when it first came out. I do agree that Dx10 could most likely run under XP but you know how the world of business works, we bend and they stick....lol


gosh isnt that the truth. well, i had VISTA on my work laptop since release and i got rid of it at the beginning of this week. there are all sorts of issues with VPN, terminal services, lots of 3rd party tools like sales force for outlook does not work. if i try to do a remote session with someone via GoToMeeting or some equivalent, i get issues with the security. Kaseya, which is another remote administration platform also has tons of issues, and its based of all native windows services.

so, ive got a big problem with it.


then there is just plain stupid stuff, like forcing all OpenGL resources through a software channel instead of running it directly off the video hardware. its slower then xp, its far more ram intensive then xp, even with all the AERO stuff off and having it look like XP, there is still more overhead. and for what? its not more secure, its not more user friendly, its obviously not faster, it takes three times longer to boot and login. i have found absolutely ZERO benefit for a home, office, or enterprise user.
zero.

The reason games tend to be slower in Vista than XP right now is a result of poor graphics drivers due to the transition from kernel mode drivers to user mode. I fully suspect with the right drivers, games will perform equally or slightly better in Vista than XP. Already Oblivion runs faster on Vista on my computer.

There is no way Microsoft could have written DirectX 10 for XP. It is an entirely new architecture with roots deep in the OS. Microsoft had to make major changes in the core OS to cut down/eliminate overhead that has existed in DirectX9 and earlier. Theoretically, with DX10, games will have the same overhead as a console, i.e. little or none.

Nose Nuggets said,


gosh isnt that the truth. well, i had VISTA on my work laptop since release and i got rid of it at the beginning of this week. there are all sorts of issues with VPN, terminal services, lots of 3rd party tools like sales force for outlook does not work. if i try to do a remote session with someone via GoToMeeting or some equivalent, i get issues with the security. Kaseya, which is another remote administration platform also has tons of issues, and its based of all native windows services.

so, ive got a big problem with it.


then there is just plain stupid stuff, like forcing all OpenGL resources through a software channel instead of running it directly off the video hardware. its slower then xp, its far more ram intensive then xp, even with all the AERO stuff off and having it look like XP, there is still more overhead. and for what? its not more secure, its not more user friendly, its obviously not faster, it takes three times longer to boot and login. i have found absolutely ZERO benefit for a home, office, or enterprise user.
zero.

It isn't Microsoft's fault if 3rd-party software uses core Windows services and then fails to function in a completely new OS.

How many times must I explain the extra RAM Vista requires? For the 500th time, Vista is not a resource hog. It caches your frequently used programs in memory, up to about half of your RAM. That way your apps will load much faster. However, if you have 512Mb, you will notice a speed decrease - XP works better with less RAM.

You must not be running the same Vista I am. On all my computers, from desktops to laptops, Vista outperforms XP, in both the time it takes to boot/shutdown, open apps, log in, etc. In fact, the only thing that is slower in Vista right now is some of my computer games - but that number is constantly decreasing due to better graphics drivers. As far as user-friendlyness, Vista, is miles ahead of XP. The ability to search for programs in the Start menu, the instant Control Panel search, the network diagnostics, the network map, the more understandable error dialogs, the moving away from the outdated text-menu system in Explorer, Photo Gallery, and IE, all enhance the user experience.

In fact, once I installed Vista on my mom's computer (she doesn't know a whole lot about computers), I have not received any complaints about Vista. It is as solid as a rock.

Gaming on Vista is slower because you also need to download DirectX9. Vista comes with DirectX10 and although it is backwards compatible, if you have both APIs old games made for DX9 will run better.

my work laptop has a gig of ram and it never idles beloew 87%. apps do not load faster, they open slower. i have installed vista on 6 brand new dell D620s with 2 gigs of ram and duel core cpus and all there end useres report the same crap.

your right, MS cant be blamed for 3rd party apps not working. but there is no excuse for having buggy vpn and terminal services.

the vista i have been using is enterprise and buisiness.


ati/amd and nvidia have had a year now to develop drivers and we still have crap.


can you expand on this
"There is no way Microsoft could have written DirectX 10 for XP. It is an entirely new architecture with roots deep in the OS"

rIaHc3 said,
Gaming on Vista is slower because you also need to download DirectX9. Vista comes with DirectX10 and although it is backwards compatible, if you have both APIs old games made for DX9 will run better.

That's not true. Vista comes with a version of DirectX 9 and DirectX 10.

Skanks said,

That's not true. Vista comes with a version of DirectX 9 and DirectX 10.

False. Search around and you will see that Vista does not have DirectX 9. Better yet prove it yourself; Download the latest copy of DirectX 9 and you will see how Vista allows it to be installed.

Nose Nuggets said,
my work laptop has a gig of ram and it never idles beloew 87%. apps do not load faster, they open slower. i have installed vista on 6 brand new dell D620s with 2 gigs of ram and duel core cpus and all there end useres report the same crap.

your right, MS cant be blamed for 3rd party apps not working. but there is no excuse for having buggy vpn and terminal services.

the vista i have been using is enterprise and buisiness.


ati/amd and nvidia have had a year now to develop drivers and we still have crap.


can you expand on this
"There is no way Microsoft could have written DirectX 10 for XP. It is an entirely new architecture with roots deep in the OS"

Im no Vista fan quite yet, but I gotta say, I've the exact opposite experience with Vista. I find it extremely responsive, much faster than XP loading apps, its one of the things I really like about Vista. Also, its the first OS that I haven't had to tweak the connection to hell. Im blown away at how steady, stable and fast my connection is with Vista.

rIaHc3 said,

False. Search around and you will see that Vista does not have DirectX 9. Better yet prove it yourself; Download the latest copy of DirectX 9 and you will see how Vista allows it to be installed.


No, Skanks is correct. DirectX 9 comes with Vista, it just isn't the latest version.

Danrarbc said,

No, Skanks is correct. DirectX 9 comes with Vista, it just isn't the latest version.

Yes and No. Vista comes with a new version of DX9 that XP will also not get. If i recall its DX9EX. Has alot of the new XNA stuff in it. Reason dude busted a nut. Was a game most likey installed and said he wasn't running the correct version of DX9. So it installed the one that came on the CD. Well at least started the installer. Then DX installer dose it checks and moves on.

If you look when it's installing, it installs the SDK updates for DX9 (and from what I can see mostly ones that are post Vista) which obviously it wouldn't include.

The game industry rushes games to market and then do massive patches after the fact.
When game console acquired the ability (xbox360 especially atm) to patch, console games risk the same fate.

They use to release a game that was "done" and working... not rushed out the door and put out fires.

Charging people for PC version of windows "live" and wanting to do subscription service is a very bad move. Pc games and gamers are use to free online play unless it's an MMO type of game.

jstillion said,
The game industry rushes games to market and then do massive patches after the fact.
When game console acquired the ability (xbox360 especially atm) to patch, console games risk the same fate.

They use to release a game that was "done" and working... not rushed out the door and put out fires.

Charging people for PC version of windows "live" and wanting to do subscription service is a very bad move. Pc games and gamers are use to free online play unless it's an MMO type of game.

GfW Live *Silver* (the base membership) is actually free (and is cross-compatible with XBL Silver, and uses the same GamerTag, achievements, etc.), so your argument holds no water.

Not all GfW games use the matchmaking service (in fact, neither SupCom or C&C3 do; instead, both titles use their own matchmaking services). While Halo 2 *does* use the GfWL matchmaking service, it is only the *third* GfW title (the first title honors, in fact, belong to Supreme Commander).

I own both SupCom and C&C3, but have never owned either sort of XBox; yet I *do* have a GamerTag (which I got via GfWL, which costs me bupkis). Explain that, please.

Sorry, but this article just screams FUD. It's basically saying that Microsoft fails PC gamers based on their own failings at getting 2 games to work as they were intended. Now while I agree that both games have their share of problems, I disagree that it degrades from the whole "games for windows" stuff in any way.

Besides, PLENTY of games released these days don't run perfectly on everyone's systems right away. HL2 is a prime example, we all remember the chaos people were having when that game was first released. More Recently, S.T.A.L.K.E.R. is filled with bugs causing it to crash (and I was personally affected by that), SupCom is another one that was plagued with issues at first.

But at the end of the day, if you actually bother to READ the "games for windows" prequesties (it's not just a logo you pay to have the privilege of using, you know), it's nothing but a good thing. Things like support for more systems, things like support for installers that DON'T restart your computer, things like support for the ability to double-click a save game and jump right into the action - all good things.

I'm not defending Microsoft's inability to properly QA some of their titles, but I am trying to point out the other side that this article seems to ignore.

Installers that don't restart your computer??? WTF? I've never needed to reboot to install a game! Maybe MS did for its own games but then they're finding solutions for a problem they themselves created, oh wow, I'm impressed.

Double click a save game? Yes! I REALLY need that feature! .... Oh wait, no I don't ! Come on, is that all you can come up with? You're actually getting all hot and bothered about being able to double-click on a save game file? You're easily impressed.

I basically agree with the article except for the fact that they suggested that Steam now has a friends list because they copied it from MS? Again:WTF? Steam has had a friends list for years! (ok, it pretty much sucked and I still think it can be improved greatly but it existed at least).

quintesse said,
Installers that don't restart your computer??? WTF? I've never needed to reboot to install a game! Maybe MS did for its own games but then they're finding solutions for a problem they themselves created, oh wow, I'm impressed.

Double click a save game? Yes! I REALLY need that feature! .... Oh wait, no I don't ! Come on, is that all you can come up with? You're actually getting all hot and bothered about being able to double-click on a save game file? You're easily impressed.

I basically agree with the article except for the fact that they suggested that Steam now has a friends list because they copied it from MS? Again:WTF? Steam has had a friends list for years! (ok, it pretty much sucked and I still think it can be improved greatly but it existed at least).


i remember red alert 1 telling me to restart my computer after installing, but im pretty sure the world has passed those days of restarting all the time

quintesse said,
Installers that don't restart your computer??? WTF? I've never needed to reboot to install a game! Maybe MS did for its own games but then they're finding solutions for a problem they themselves created, oh wow, I'm impressed.

Double click a save game? Yes! I REALLY need that feature! .... Oh wait, no I don't ! Come on, is that all you can come up with? You're actually getting all hot and bothered about being able to double-click on a save game file? You're easily impressed.

I basically agree with the article except for the fact that they suggested that Steam now has a friends list because they copied it from MS? Again:WTF? Steam has had a friends list for years! (ok, it pretty much sucked and I still think it can be improved greatly but it existed at least).

Ugh, you've completely missed my point. I have had games force me to restart my computer during either the install or uninstall process. You mean to tell me you've NEVER installed a game and had it say "you should restart your computer now"? We both know that 99% of the time, that's complete bull**** and you don't need to restart at all, but average joe doesn't know that.

And the guidelines also force the installers and uninstallers to do a completely clean Job, it forces them to have similar installation procedures to make each game install in a similar fashion. Here, this is only part 1 of the INSTALLATION guidelines:

Games with a traditional installation must provide a simplified path in their setup user interface:

Display a maximum of one EULA

Provide default and custom installation options. The default option must bypass all selections for the install (such as installation folder, component selections, etc.), assume the default selections and then run the game or launcher upon successful install without addition prompts.

Install any required OS components (such as the DirectX and Visual C runtimes) silently without prompting or guarded by component version checks using the correct Microsoft redistribution package(s).

Provide removal only via the Programs control panel for both the game application as well as user-generated game files. This must ensure all installed files are removed and all settings (firewall, registry, etc.) are cleared. Redistributed OS components must not be removed.

I've highlighted just a few key points that I know personally appeal to me, as an end user. And that's JUST installation guidelines.

As for the save game issue, there's a very good reason for it. When you're busy playing through a game, why should you have to wait for the game to load up to the main menu just so you can spend more time waiting for the actual game to load once you pick your save game? It's a waste of time and nobody needs to see the developer logos again and again. It would be much easier to just open up your games explorer, select the game, then select the save you wish to continue from. Next thing, screen goes black, loading screen appears and you dive right into the middle of the action.

Suuure, you might not be impressed by it, hell I'm not impressed by it, but it sure is a nice little feature to have none the less.

And here's another important one that a LOT of games, even today, overlook:

Requirement
The game must support at least the following aspect ratios and associated minimum screen resolutions:

4:3 "normal" (800 × 600)

16:9 "widescreen" (1280 × 720)

16:10 "widescreen" (1152 × 720)

It might have been uncommon to have a widescreen monitor a few years ago, but they're everywhere today and anyone that's had one will know that a LOT of games lack proper support for them, so they're forced to either adjust their screens so they get nasty black bars down the sides, or live with squashed characters on screen. But when you pick up a game with "Games for Windows", you KNOW that it'll support your monitor's aspect ratio.

That's what this is about, really, just making things a bit better for PC gamers.

Why don't you try looking at the actual GfW guidelines before deciding that you just don't need them? I for one welcome them.

oh noe i have to restart my computer which will take all of one minute.. what AM i going to do

and a big no no to silently installing components for games, users should be told what is going on, not kept in the dark because they are "too stupid" to understand

rob.derosa said,
oh noe i have to restart my computer which will take all of one minute.. what AM i going to do

and a big no no to silently installing components for games, users should be told what is going on, not kept in the dark because they are "too stupid" to understand

Once again, why don't you bother reading the entire guidelines before debunking them?
Besides, the point is that this article is full of crap, Microsoft isn't trying to Kill PC gaming and none of it's points are actually relevant to the GfW initiative.

Well I don't have Vista, so I don't know exactly what "Games for Windows Live" does for gamers so I can't comment on "will it kill pc gaming".

I can say however that the argument for the "lack of compelling titles" is bogus, since it's so early in the program's lifespan. I would think in time more games will come out for GfWL and it won't be such a ghost-town anymore.

On a side note, I do hate the naming conventions MS is using for all its new-age Windows online integration stuff. "Windows Live this" and "that for Windows Live". I dunno, it just irks me for some reason.

spacer said,
Well I don't have Vista, so I don't know exactly what "Games for Windows Live" does for gamers so I can't comment on "will it kill pc gaming".

Here's a quick summary of it.

1. "Games for Windows Live" hopes to integrate PC gaming with Xbox gaming. Bad idea, IMHO. I like my PC games the way they are, I don't want to play dumb console games. Rather than honestly promote PC gaming, MS is further dumbing it down to serve it's own agenda.

2. To get Games for Windows approval, a game must have a purchased license from Microsoft. To qualify for that license, it must conform to US ratings laws (ESRB). That means publishers will shy away from "hardcore" games the same way they do from R-rated movies. The game must also support Xbox controllers. Microsoft also has the option now to refuse to grant a license to any game it doesn't approve of.

3. MS wants PC gamers to get stuck with a service similar to Xbox Live, where they will eventually have to pay a monthly subscription for the "privilege" of buying addons that normally would be free.

I know Neowin is filled with Microsoft fanboys, but if you're a gamer you really should not be supportive of this initiative because it doesn't help gamers in any way, it only benefits MS.

As for killing PC gaming, no, MS isn't trying to do that. MS is trying to grab control of PC gaming in the same way it controls Xbox gaming.

I think the big PC publishers should boycott Vista and this whole Gaming Live thing. Develop in OpenGL and there will be no need for Vista, or Microsoft's extortion schemes.

toadeater said,

Here's a quick summary of it.

1. "Games for Windows Live" hopes to integrate PC gaming with Xbox gaming. Bad idea, IMHO. I like my PC games the way they are, I don't want to play dumb console games. Rather than honestly promote PC gaming, MS is further dumbing it down to serve it's own agenda.

2. To get Games for Windows approval, a game must have a purchased license from Microsoft. To qualify for that license, it must conform to US ratings laws (ESRB). That means publishers will shy away from "hardcore" games the same way they do from R-rated movies. The game must also support Xbox controllers. Microsoft also has the option now to refuse to grant a license to any game it doesn't approve of.

3. MS wants PC gamers to get stuck with a service similar to Xbox Live, where they will eventually have to pay a monthly subscription for the "privilege" of buying addons that normally would be free.

I know Neowin is filled with Microsoft fanboys, but if you're a gamer you really should not be supportive of this initiative because it doesn't help gamers in any way, it only benefits MS.

As for killing PC gaming, no, MS isn't trying to do that. MS is trying to grab control of PC gaming in the same way it controls Xbox gaming.

I think the big PC publishers should boycott Vista and this whole Gaming Live thing. Develop in OpenGL and there will be no need for Vista, or Microsoft's extortion schemes.

Do you really think that Microsoft cares about ESRB ratings? I mean, as long as it isn't AO (which no store would sell anyway), they'll take it. Xbox is known for being the "mature" console. Hell, they were the only one with BMXXX for example (horrible game, but only Xbox had the version with nudity).

I'm not sure where Microsoft is going with this approach, but I really don't feel they're killing PC gaming. I just think they're being stupid about some things, but I do like the fact that they're pushing developers to having features that all games should have (video options, joypad configurations). Maybe the controller thing doesn't appeal to some, but if it's a way to convert console enthusiasts to PC gaming, then I'm for it. It's about time they see the limits to their console.

Besides, there are still a lot of games releasing without giving 2 cents of what Microsoft has to say. Remember that Microsoft has yet to convince us that "Games for Windows" means anything special other than "Screw Macs".

Dakkaroth said,
Hell, they were the only one with BMXXX for example (horrible game, but only Xbox had the version with nudity).

Not true at all. The only censored version was the PS2 version, GameCube and Xbox were not.

Dakkaroth said,
Do you really think that Microsoft cares about ESRB ratings? I mean, as long as it isn't AO (which no store would sell anyway), they'll take it. Xbox is known for being the "mature" console. Hell, they were the only one with BMXXX for example (horrible game, but only Xbox had the version with nudity).

I said that publishers care, not that MS cares. They do. For the same reason that movie studios do. They want to reach the widest possible audience for their demographic. That demographic happens to include a large percentage of little kids.

That's another problem. The demographics for consoles and PCs is different. PC gamers are on average college age and older, while console gamers are, on average, teenagers. When making a "Games for Windows" game, which is actually a Games For Windows + Xbox game, a publisher will have to cater to the lowest common denominator: kids and their paranoid parents who believe the hype about violence in games.

I'm not sure where Microsoft is going with this approach, but I really don't feel they're killing PC gaming.

Yes, I agree. They're not trying to kill PC gaming, they're trying to gain control of it and profit from forcing PC gamers to use MS Gaming Live, or whatever it's called. Yes, it's free now, for basic features, but you know what will happen if MS ever succeeds in getting people hooked on this crack.

I call it crack because there is ZERO benefit for gamers in all this. I love how MS says it's "helping" us! Sort of like how George W. Bush "helped" Iraq.