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The real reason 'PC gaming is dying'

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May 8, 2008 3:07:04 PM

Alright, I would LOVE to discuss this with some people who know something about the current state of the industry. We all know piracy is a problem, but that's not what I'm here to discuss. Has anyone checked out gamesforwindows.com?

Here's my take on it. PC gaming has always had console ports. Historically, very few ports were considered good games. Games typically do better if they're designed for their platform (correct me if I'm wrong). Now we have this "Games for Windows" that appeared about the same time I started hearing all the "PC gaming is dying" talk. Fact is, PC gaming sales are in the billions, and they went up from last year. This GFW seems to me like a port-machine for Xbox 360. It also requires compatibility with the 360 controller.

Now, people that read these forums and I know that PC games look a hell of a lot better than their console versions (cept Bioshock for SOME reason). Joe Consumer, on the other hand, has a choice to make. He sees "Games for Windows" and could assume that it's a PC game and anything that doesn't have that logo must not be authentic. That limits his picks to GFW games. J.C. may not be tech savvy but he isn't stupid. He weighs his options. He looks at a game for both PC and Xbox 360, let's say Overlord, or Bioshock, doesn't matter. Both say you can use a controller, however J.C. realizes he would be more comfortable sitting on the couch. Looking at the graphics, J.C. doesn't see much of a difference. Then J.C. looks at the system requirements and finds it would be cheaper to buy an Xbox360 AND a low end HDTV than it would be to upgrade his current system.

It could be argued that without GFW we wouldn't have seen games like Bioshock or Overlord on PC and that would have hurt more. I don't agree. I think because of the ports being so similar and the massive amount of marketing going into them, would-be PC gamers are turning to Xbox (or ps3). I think all the 'PC gaming is dying' talk started when GFW started. The comparisons were too hard to make until GFW turned PC gaming into a more or less XBox emulation platform. I can see the ideas for it, make one game and sell it on more than your own platform, make extra $$. If the plan was to get people to buy two copies of these games, I don't see that happening.

Clearly, the main reason people are PC gamers in the first place is either for the controls, the graphics, or the ability to play online with a massive group of people. If everything is the same, the Xbox gets the advantage for being a couch/TV system.

Again I agree piracy is a problem and it's turning developers away from PC gaming, but nobody so far has even looked into this other issue. I really am looking for a meaningful discussion here, if you're gonna flame me keep it out of the thread thx.
May 8, 2008 4:12:04 PM

ughhh no, GFW main purpose is not to be a port machine for xb360...

The purpose of it is to set an industry standard. You buy a game for xbox 360 or PS3 you go home unwrap it, pop it in and start playing.

That's more or less what the purpose is, to set a standard set of hardware specs for the games to run on.

So basically if your PC can run windows vista, you can run any game with the GFW logo on it. They want to make it as convienant to install and play the games as possible, not everyone like us hardcore PC gamers want to play with settings, tweak things etc..

Don't get me wrong I have no doubt in my mind that M$ has alterior motives and a hidden agenda in all this, but that's the simple fact of it.

It had nothing to do with piracy, although a problem of course.. The main goal was to make it as easy as possible for joe consumer to purchase a game and start playing it as hassle free as possible on his somewhat basic hardware and not have to upgrade everytime a game somes out.

Same idea behind the PC Gaming Alliance, they want to set a standard and help slowdown the hardware arms race between companies, that in turn make your 6 month old video card look like a pos.

They as well want to set a standard, but trying to work with the main companies too, for instance intel... and their onboard graphics, which is absolute crap. Then joe consumer thinks he can buy this budget gaming system with onboard graphics then go play the latest games... well clearly we all know that aint going to work...

Like mentioned in another thread I think Steam (valve) has a really big opportunity here. I hope that they can make it work and jump in it, which they prob are but who knows. If they can make steam the super friendly game consultant, then they will gain the respect of gamers and grab a HUGE marketshare...

For instance like discussed before, if they could tell you (which they can cuz steam is pretty intrusive in respect to analyizing your PC specs) how well a game will run before you even buy it, well that will be an amazing feature and no need for GFW now. SURE some people won't buy a game because they can't play it on their hardware but at least they didnt have to purchase the game for 50$ to find out.

This way they avoid people bashing and bad mouth devs,publishers etc.. and are happy at least they knew before they paid for it.. it's the best of both worlds, hardcore gamers will be fine as they are, and the not so hardcore who aren't going to update their pc once a year, let alone a couple times like the hardcore won't be left paying for games they can't play.

They will at least know where they stand and what it will take to let them play this game. VIA updateing hardware if they want to play a game badly enough.

There is alot more to all this but I think that GFW is a croc for the most part and a failure. Only because M$ has done squat all with it, such a big build up and announcments etc.. then nothing...

anyways, this topic can get thrown around back and forth alot... it sure is the hot one at the moment...

but PC Gaming is Alive! more then ever!
May 8, 2008 4:20:09 PM

like many things, this is an issue of interconnected relations. to play the newest, most graphically-intense games for PC, your machine has to be suitably high-end to give the user a smooth presentation (i.e. no lag, good framerates, pseudo-realistic graphics). this either requires john doe to buy a "high end" pre-built system (i.e. dell, etc.) or invest a substantial amount of time and money into building a custom system on his own.

enter current console hardware. while not being upgradable (for the most part), consoles have an edge in presenting the latest games in that their developers write the game around the console's capabilities. this is not to say that console games don't lag, but that's another story.

ever notice how PC gamers are looked at far differently than console gamers? that's not an accident. generating mass appeal for consoles means console developers/publishers have to make console gamers non-pariahs. look at the amount of commercials for console games vs. PC games, and the types of commercials for each. on a related note (with a nod to the "couch gaming" idea), console gaming is seen as much more of a socially involving activity, since many games are designed for 2 or more players on the same console. kinda hard to play much of anything split-screen on a PC nowadays.

so, while the general public knows little to nothing about building a gaming machine or even what RAM is, they can look at a game released on both xbox 360 and PC and make the "obvious" choice as a consumer: the console is a one-time investment, it's more socially acceptable to play, and the game doesn't need to be installed or patched (usually). simplicity, as far as john doe is concerned. this is exact mindset console games target.

relating more directly to the GFW branding: the more I see it, the more I think it's just another way microsoft is trying to force the conversion to vista. no, GFW games aren't vista-only, but judging by their list of supposed benefits, not much else stands out. "tested rigorously?" does that mean the game has no bugs and never needs to be patched? "easy to play?" (which translates to "easy to install/uninstall, especially under vista") are they really trying to tell us that previous games weren't easy enough to install or uninstall? in my opinion, GFW is the same thing as "the way it's meant to be played": nothing more than marketing.







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May 8, 2008 4:27:01 PM

Quote:
Now we have this "Games for Windows" that appeared about the same time I started hearing all the "PC gaming is dying" talk.


People have been saying PC gaming is dying much longer than when GFW first appeared. GFW is more like a very late response to years of people saying PC gaming is dying. You can debate whether GFW is good for PC gaming or not (I think it is), but the trend that PC gaming has been going in started years before GFW was even thought of.
May 8, 2008 4:48:42 PM

mudlab said:

ever notice how PC gamers are looked at far differently than console gamers? that's not an accident. generating mass appeal for consoles means console developers/publishers have to make console gamers non-pariahs. look at the amount of commercials for console games vs. PC games, and the types of commercials for each. on a related note (with a nod to the "couch gaming" idea), console gaming is seen as much more of a socially involving activity, since many games are designed for 2 or more players on the same console. kinda hard to play much of anything split-screen on a PC nowadays.


This may also have to do with the fact that PC gamers usually are in front of their PC's not a TV... wasted money.

When they game is for all platforms well then it's just a bonus, but you didn't see Crysis ads on television did you?

well at least I didn't but then again, i fall into the PC gamer in front of my pc, not a tv.
May 8, 2008 5:05:20 PM

PC Gaming isn't dying.
Steam just crossed the 15 million user mark in March with a total , total sales of PC Games in the last 3 months out paced all the console sales combined, and Microsoft just announced their vision for Games for Windows including addressing some confusion on Windows Live and how it's a free service for Windows Vista owners.
The facts are Windows is Bill Gates baby. This was the baby that made him who he is today. He isn't going to let it die. X-box was something to help them get to where they wanted Windows to be which is a multi-functional OS that could compete with anything and everything. People talk about what a crap product Vista is but these people haven't delved deep into the OS. Microsoft Synch was developed for Vista and then ported to cars, Windows Live was beta and made primarily for Vista (that GfW has way more use than what people thought), and then there is the phasing out of 16 bit crappy installers and drivers.
Now we look at what consoles bring for Gamers and it's little improvement on the past but PC Gaming is always expanding and growing. PC Games have driven the tech that makes consoles able to exist in their current form as it is today. Without PC Games the Console Market would still be at the Sega Genesis Level. We may hate the fact that every year we have to buy the newest and best Graphics card to continue playing the games we love but it's this ever expanding growth that has driven our technological advances. Without this all Gaming would stagnate and die.
Then we look at Sony's Gaming Department and it's inability to get out of the Red, Microsoft has stated publicly that they take a loss on every console that is bought, and the only company to actually report a profit for their console business is Nintendo.
The biggest problem with PC Gaming was Piracy but even that is going to be addressed as the PC Gaming Alliance begins to take shape. Who is heading the PC Gaming Alliance? Microsoft.
This is it for Consoles. They had their day but it's over. They have hit a mark where every Console produces a negative profit. Sony will port over to their own brand of Computers running ReactOS or Linux with Wine, Nintendo will continue on their mark of producing a Console for Family oriented and Group play, and X-box will fade into Windows.
For PC Gaming to die then PC's would have to die and that would mean Windows would have to die. That's not going to happen. The only reason people think Vista is a crap OS is that only a few people have actually delved deep enough into it to see all the features it does have. With SSD's coming down in price the 15 second from turn on to full function is here. It takes 30 seconds to install Vista from start to finish with a SSD. That's installing.
PC Gaming is just getting started. It's going to get pretty interesting in the next ten years.
May 8, 2008 5:09:54 PM

I didn't see any crysis ads either. I do, however, remember f.e.a.r. ads...then again f.e.a.r. was not only on PC...

May 8, 2008 5:16:45 PM

There were Crysis TV ads. I remember seeing them on both G4 and FX. However between the release of the demo and the full game being such flops it's probably more likely that EA pulled the ads to cut their losses on a game that just wasn't going to catch on. WoW ads are on all the time though as are The Sims for PC only games. Not a lot of other major titles are PC only anymore though.
May 8, 2008 6:26:17 PM

Cuddles said:

This is it for Consoles. They had their day but it's over.


hard to believe, considering the recent sales of gta 4, halo 3, CoD 4, etc. both microsoft and sony have stated that their consoles are on a 5-year cycle. over? I think we're far from that. both PC gaming and console gaming are coming into their own, but ultimately it'll be sales that determine who remains years down the line.
May 8, 2008 9:39:31 PM

Unless Sony can show a positive influx of cash from Playstation Sales it should be over but I just don't see it happening for them. Right now they are loosing around a $100.00 per sale of Console. Microsoft's X-Box 360 has already lost Billions for Microsoft and they were loosing a little over $100.00 per Console before the recent price drop. I can't even imagine the loss they are taking with X-Box 360 right now but if they have played it smart they will use it as a Tax Right Off and use their Gaming Department to show plus positive figures. Microsoft unlike Sony though has one of the best Gaming Departments in the Industry while Sony has one of the worst. I think Microsoft was looking at the bigger picture years ago and done a pretty good job of destroying their main OS Gaming competition. Nintendo was a suprise but I think Microsoft will let them be. There is a need for consoles and Nintendo does a good job in filling in that niche.
May 8, 2008 10:09:34 PM

the reason pc gaming is dying is because for the average gamer doesnt want to spend two hundred quid on a graphics card every six months and probabarly wouldnt know how to install it anyway, pc gaming is too complex and expensive for most (i think).

the other reason is that the kind of guy who knows how to do the techie stuff involved in building and maintaining a gaming rig also knows where to get his games for free... dont tell me you dont you liars!

i was thinking, how could the pc gaming industry fight piracy more effectively and make it easier for the average user?

well what about games for windows introducing a piece of software that essensialy turns almost ANY pc into a gaming console, install the software and run the games straight from the disk as consoles do? granted it would have to run on a wide range of systems(even ones with intergrated graphics, eeek!) and this will be the biggest hurdle i think. but if there was something like that which updated itself automatically, adjusted graphics properties automaticaly, had a universial controller that just plugged straight into usb with out drivers or time consuming button mapping needed i think they would be able to sell more.

the adition of the universial controller, specialy designed for the platform would also enable them to perhaps put some kind of security chip in the controller so games will not run unless you buy the controller,

theres my crazy idea anyway....
May 8, 2008 10:11:57 PM

I think I'd just quit playing games if they did something like that.
May 8, 2008 10:20:38 PM

Oh Snap said:
I think I'd just quit playing games if they did something like that.


yea i mean hav that simple plaform open for the ametures who dont like messing with pcs and obvously there will still be the market of power hungry games that demand high speed pcs to run but look beautifull. i would also be gutted if they introduced that security system i mentioned, but it would prolly cut down on piracy, look at the professional audio editing programs like cubase 4, you have to buy a security dongle for the software to work, cubase 4 hasnt been cracked yet so maybe this would be worth is to stop piracy and thats a good thing? (for the people making and sellin games obviously) were not gunna benifit from the meney they make straight away, but if pc gaming becomes more profitable we would have big titles like gta iv running on our machines right now..... probabarly
May 8, 2008 11:49:32 PM

How about a compromise? Sony, Microsoft and Nintendo keep making their consoles with their fixed specs, but have them basically be mini PCs (pretty much there right now) and have all games developers create a single version of each game that you could use in any one of the consoles or PC. The games would all be compatible with the consoles, with the software detecting which one is running it and adjusting the settings to run optimally on that console or, if it's a PC, allow the user to customise as they do now. That could also work for activating/deactivating console/PC specific features, but in the end, we'd all get basically the same game on the same disk for the same price. The consoles could still differentiate themselves from each other with different controllers/graphics/online capabilities/etc and anyone who wants to put a bit more time, money and effort into their gaming can stick with their PCs.

Is that just a crazy dream? An unreachable gaming eutopia? I hope not! Thinking about it right now, it's utterly baffling to me that we don't already have universal games like this. Look at the way you watch movies at home. From a cheapo £50 player, to an expensive £xxxx full home entertainment system, they all take the same discs and the experience is pretty much the same (with varying quality though, obviously), but that's how it should be with games. I'm tired of needing several systems to play a few games when any of them are capabable of running them, just because some company bought the exclusive rights. It's time games were made for gamers, not just to make money from them!
May 9, 2008 12:08:34 AM

mothhive said:
How about a compromise? Sony, Microsoft and Nintendo keep making their consoles with their fixed specs, but have them basically be mini PCs (pretty much there right now) and have all games developers create a single version of each game that you could use in any one of the consoles or PC. The games would all be compatible with the consoles, with the software detecting which one is running it and adjusting the settings to run optimally on that console or, if it's a PC, allow the user to customise as they do now. That could also work for activating/deactivating console/PC specific features, but in the end, we'd all get basically the same game on the same disk for the same price. The consoles could still differentiate themselves from each other with different controllers/graphics/online capabilities/etc and anyone who wants to put a bit more time, money and effort into their gaming can stick with their PCs.

Is that just a crazy dream? An unreachable gaming eutopia? I hope not! Thinking about it right now, it's utterly baffling to me that we don't already have universal games like this. Look at the way you watch movies at home. From a cheapo £50 player, to an expensive £xxxx full home entertainment system, they all take the same discs and the experience is pretty much the same (with varying quality though, obviously), but that's how it should be with games. I'm tired of needing several systems to play a few games when any of them are capabable of running them, just because some company bought the exclusive rights. It's time games were made for gamers, not just to make money from them!


that would be soo good for the consumer... i agree totaly with your idea, the only problem is that consoles like the ps3 would die, theres no way sony and nintendo would buy into thiis 'cos they'd loose money.

i think if this happened, and all games and consoles beame x86/x64 based so they could run the same disk on a pc as a console, sony for example would come up against competition from dell, hp, pretty much any one who can build a pc! right now i doubt sony and nintendo have the ability to build pc as cheap as a company like dell as thats all they specialise in.

but then again, as you said, sony and nintendo could capture a market by hiring IBM, nividia or amd/ati to build customised x86/x64 chips that exell in gaming... thats how they currently source their chips but i dont think they are x86/x64 based... so cant run windows and you cant run the games on a normal machine without a slow emulator. plus they av the option to develop better controll systems, networking abilities and even customised operating systems o run games faster and make the whle thing easier...

i dont know but it would be brill if that happened


May 9, 2008 1:09:03 AM

It'd never happen though. Companies wouldn't work together like that because they couldn't count on revenue from exclusive titles like Halo. It'd be cool, but honestly corporations are far more concerned with their financial success than with the overall success of the industry. That's just the way it is.
May 9, 2008 1:51:21 AM

mudlab said:
I didn't see any crysis ads either. I do, however, remember f.e.a.r. ads...then again f.e.a.r. was not only on PC...
F.E.A.R. released on the PC a year before the Xbox360, and the PS3 version came out even later than that.
May 9, 2008 11:42:11 AM

psymanproductions said:
well what about games for windows introducing a piece of software that essensialy turns almost ANY pc into a gaming console, install the software and run the games straight from the disk as consoles do? granted it would have to run on a wide range of systems(even ones with intergrated graphics, eeek!) and this will be the biggest hurdle i think. but if there was something like that which updated itself automatically, adjusted graphics properties automaticaly, had a universial controller that just plugged straight into usb with out drivers or time consuming button mapping needed i think they would be able to sell more.

the adition of the universial controller, specialy designed for the platform would also enable them to perhaps put some kind of security chip in the controller so games will not run unless you buy the controller,

theres my crazy idea anyway....


THIS.... This right here is why PC gaming is diminishing (I won't say dying because it isn't). Companies are becoming so obsessed with fighting piracy that they aren't noticing all of the honest gamers that they are alienating and thereby driving either to consoles or away from gaming altogether. DRM is the cause of the diminishing market.

Many people might not have even realized that this was the reason. Many console gamers I have talked to have quoted instability as the main reason why they left PC gaming for consoles. That instability was often caused by shoddy DRM. Now with the new versions of Securom rearing their ugly heads, more savvy PC gamers are starting to think the grass looks awfully green on the consoles these days.

And the most frustrating part is that the DRM isn't even doing any good. It is just outright absurd. Why do they spend so much money on alienating their audience for no discernible benefit?
May 9, 2008 4:24:45 PM

Quote:
amdfangirl: Look, here's more on the Bioware DRM case http://www.fudzilla.com/index.php? [...] 5&Itemid=1
Blacklisting? have they really lost it?


yeah, they probably have. Games are getting insanely time consuming/expensive to create, and every minute and dollar spent on anti-piracy is a minute and a dollar taken away from the games' quality.

I'm really trying here to not turn this into a piracy/anti-piracy debate... I bought Crysis and Call of Duty 4, but I've also pirated so I'm not really biased. I'd just like to say that I really do believe that SecuRom or ANY DRM is just as bad as piracy to begin with. People who really want the game will get over it to play it, but it still makes things a pain in the ass and will probably drive a few people away from the game, or PC gaming in general.

Back on topic anyways... I think the point made earlier about a game working on every platform would be a mistake. We as PC gamers sacrifice couch comfort and ease of use for specific PC features. The more PC games become like console games, the more people will want to switch over. 90% of people would not be able to tell the difference between UT3 on a PS3 at 1080p (whew, acronyms!) vs UT3 on a PC at 1920x1200. Technical superiority is NOT an advantage unless it means running a game that no other system can run (Crysis). Make a new game like Bioshock or Call of Duty 4 that runs on PC and the consoles, give them the same control options (xbox 360 controller for windows), and you have a problem. Why would people bother upgrading their PC, setting up the game, and dealing with the DRM when they could just throw the game in their console and play it from the couch, with the SAME exact experience! Now throw piracy into the mix.... that's my point. Piracy is a problem but these people are starting to use it as a scapegoat for ALL problems.
May 9, 2008 4:40:25 PM

Just one more thing about the piracy/DRM debate, both sides are way off. P2P technology is only going to get better, consoles aren't immune from it either. There has to be a way to deal with it other than treating everyone like a pirate (DRM, Comcast throttling P2P) or trying to claim some moral superiority (piracy is a crusade vs X company!) There is a way to deal with it... is there some kind of problem with steam? Why doesn't everyone take this approach? There's an offline mode so you can play without internet (seems to be a main topic of debate). As far as I know, you could still get a hardcopy of the game if retailers released some sort of "steam" version or whatever they wanted to come up with. Wheres the problem?
May 9, 2008 9:33:44 PM

First there was Pong, the begining of our epic Odyssey, and all was well.

Then cometh Atari 2600, TI-99, Intelevision and the start of our Odyssey²! Though they whom are your forefathers cometh onto the scene the almighty PC stood as a great stone wall until them who did cometh are no more.

Then they of the third generation stood to fight King PC; Atari 7600, Sega, NES and his little game boy to. Though hey fought valiantly and much was the lamentation for the death of the King, still he stood.

Not long after the third epic war did the scoundrels come forth in new terror as Sega Mega drive and Super NES come with a plot to foil the King, again, which failed, ho hum.......

Down through the ages have they come, now to the seventh war; Xbox 360, Sony's PS3, Wii. Surely now with their combined might the King shall surely fall. It is a dark day my friends, a time of chaos.

For those whom are faithful, we await the return of the King..........
May 10, 2008 1:18:18 AM

While piracy is definitely a factor in the recent (and hopefully not permanent) PC gaming slump, I think a more significant cause is the 'Average Joe.' I think it's safe to say that the majority of video game purchasers (for all platforms combined) would gladly sacrifice graphical quality and options for ease of use. The truth is, the typical game consumer just wants to plop down on his/her couch and play Madden or something along those lines. If he is in the store weighing the decision to buy a pc or console game, he is going to avoid the platform on which he tried for three hours to install Far Cry, but failed because "something about having integrated graphics" kept him from doing it. Based on my friends' and relatives' opinions and questions I get about computers/pc gaming, I think it's safe to say that many, many consumers have been literally scared away from pc gaming.

Let me share an experience I had when I was rather young. For some reason, I was totally psyched about Medal of Honor: Allied Assault when it came out. I asked for it for my birthday several months in advance, and sure enough, I got it!

Then I went to install it...

Being raised with a Nintendo 64, I knew virtually nothing about computers, and so i didn't even think to check any specs on the box (i didn't even know what most of them meant anyway). So after months of anticipation, i go to install, load up the game and....the sound doesn't work! So I spend literally several hours of frustration before I finally figure out that maybe i need to update my audio driver. I do this, restart my computer, and load up the game. The sound is working...i'm ready to roll!! I watch excitedly as the loading bar moves across the screen to load the first level...here it comes...here it comes....BSOD! I try again, this time, no BSOD, but the game crashes back to desktop.

I tried everything in my twelve year old power to fix this, but i just didn't know what i was doing. Turns out I had an old computer with integrated graphics and not a snowball's chance in hell of running any 3-d game after 1999. But i just gave up...didn't even consider buying another pc game til 2005, when I started to teach myself about computers.

Most 'Average Joes' who have ever tried to buy a pc game with the expectation that it will run well (if at all) just because they own a computer have had a similar experience and have thus been scared away from pc gaming. This is why I believe PC gaming is slumping currently, but, as always, I think it is the true home of innovation in gaming, and I don't think it is 'dying' as many have been claiming for years and years.

Solutions? Well first of all, as someone stated above, all players in the pc game industry (software developers, chip makers, computer manufacturers) need to get together and agree to some level of standardization and cooperation in terms of compatibility and ease of use. The 'average joe' hasn't the faintest clue how to update his drivers (let alone what the hell a driver even is). Nor does he have any idea how to install a new video card or ram.

Also, game developers need to get a grip on hardware requirements. While I was a big fan of Crysis, I hate to say it, but games like that scare the living crap out of the average consumer. This also (in part) explains the popularity of World of Warcraft. It is so scalable to older systems, that the vast majority of PC users have virtually no problem running it. While I love to see new graphical technology, I think the PC gaming industry got a little ahead of itself and in doing so alienated many consumers.
May 10, 2008 6:19:26 AM

I agree with everything you have said Rayzor but look at how far PC Gaming has came since it's inception. Now you compare it to Books, Movies, TV, Cars, Trains, Air Travel, and you suddenly see that if PC Gaming has came this far in such the short amount of time since it's birth just imagine what it will look like in just another ten to fifteen years.
Now I really want everyone here to retake a look at Microsoft Vista and what it trully brings. I wasn't a fan of Microsoft. I really wanted to go to Lepord but as a Gaming OS it failed. I went to Linux and it failed. I had XP but routine bad hardware drivers, Creatives Monopoly hold on Audio, and the want of a more robust and secure OS forced me to try Vista.
Vista opened some good doors and closed some bad ones.
I'm not saying every piece of Hardware that is Vista certified is going to be good but it is bringing that across the board standard that is so sorely needed for PC Gaming to the forefront. What it's not doing is restricting Hardware Growth as Apples Mac OS does. In fact quite the opposite. For how many years has Creative had a strangle hold on the PC Audio Selection and now that Vista has arrived we are seeing bigger and better Audio Cards than we have ever seen before.
I'm not saying that Vista is for everyone but it is the step in the right direction. In fact quite the opposite. Do not move towards Vista until you do have all the Hardware that can run it. If you do you are asking for Headaches and Heartache you just can't even begin to fathom. But if you were like me where you just needed to make a big huge push into new Hardware then Vista should be something you should really consider.
Vista probably won't be the OS that brings a complete standard like everyone here would like but it is a big step in the right direction.
Let's also don't loose sight that there will be certain companies who hate change and we will see die. Right now I think we are at that point. Broadband is growing in an unbelievable direction. Where Movies and Games were safe it isn't so much so now. What the Music Industry faced with the emergence of the Internet these companies are just facing right now. Where the Music Companies thought it was the end it was just the begining to something bigger and better than before. Music CD's are still here and Piracy is even a worse problem with Music than it is with PC Games. Most people hate stealing but more people hate being ripped off and for to long it has been to easy for these Companies to rip off the Consumer.
When Starcraft 2 comes out we'll see how many people are saying PC Gaming is dead then and we'll also see if Blizzard is saying "The reason we failed is because of Piracy."
People have and always will reward Companies huge rewards for quality products and that's just the way it is.
May 10, 2008 7:41:05 AM

pc gaming is really just beginning.... People are becoming more 'tech savvy' via the people around them like you and I. I taught 70 year old woman how to shop for a new tv once... Sooner or later people are going to start realizing that consoles are a load of bs. You get a game box.... you build a pc, sans the video card you pay a few bucks FOR A PC, not for a game box... but you have said pc... no compare game box, to ploping a video card into your pc, dollar for dollar. pc wins out, and is soooooo much more flexible on price... it's just that these people don't know what they need. The majority of the public are morons when it comes to just about anything technical unless it's in their specific field...and even then... it's questionable. I've mentioned this over and over again....why does it still come up? Why would a soccer mom want to hear their retarded kids whine and bitch because the lot of them are too ignorant and don't require the intelligence to install a pc game? WHY! neither the kid, nor the parent knows how to do it... they won't teach your kids in school... it's become a BASIC SKILL in our society to manipulate and troubleshoot hardware and software... but MOST PEOPLE JUST CAN'T DO IT! this is one of your biggest reasons nobody buys pc games.... so quit arguing.... people go the extra mile for an extraordinary experience, they don't go out of their way however if they don't know what the hell their doing...

anyway, start the bitchfest........................................NOW! :-p
May 10, 2008 7:55:27 AM

oh and ps: vista isn't a step in the right direction. People have limited amount of money that they will spend for a particular experience of any kind. Be it a movie, or mountain climbing, canoing or gaming. Linux based gaming would be a step in the right direction. eg. buy a gaming console get the software and hardware. buy/build a pc, get the the hardware, pay extra for the software. So that brings the price point way down. I support linux 100%... and it's because it just requires less hardware to do the same job, and it does it better. It's also more flexible. Having said that, i know it has it's problems and it's hurtles to leap... But I just think the statement "vista is a step in the right direction" is backwards as far as the overall industry goes, and what consumers really want. People want freedom... not confinement that they have to pay for... Having said that, the IDEA of a more standardized platform is correct based on my previous post. To make the big bucks, it needs to be easy, it needs to work well, work all the time, and be an impressive improvement over all the competition. So you are right in that aspect.

k, game is done downloading on steam, later!
May 10, 2008 3:32:02 PM

nachowarrior said:
oh and ps: vista isn't a step in the right direction. People have limited amount of money that they will spend for a particular experience of any kind. Be it a movie, or mountain climbing, canoing or gaming. Linux based gaming would be a step in the right direction. eg. buy a gaming console get the software and hardware. buy/build a pc, get the the hardware, pay extra for the software. So that brings the price point way down. I support linux 100%... and it's because it just requires less hardware to do the same job, and it does it better. It's also more flexible. Having said that, i know it has it's problems and it's hurtles to leap... But I just think the statement "vista is a step in the right direction" is backwards as far as the overall industry goes, and what consumers really want. People want freedom... not confinement that they have to pay for... Having said that, the IDEA of a more standardized platform is correct based on my previous post. To make the big bucks, it needs to be easy, it needs to work well, work all the time, and be an impressive improvement over all the competition. So you are right in that aspect.

k, game is done downloading on steam, later!

Too bad linux would just alienate a lot more users and drive them to consoles. Most people want something easy, and linux can be a pain in the ass.

P.S. What do you call a warrior that isn't yours?
May 12, 2008 1:32:46 AM

Linux has major problems. Check the ReactOS site to find a quick list of them but the facts are 85% of the Worlds Computer Users use Windows. If you play games you don't even bother trying to get the game to work on Linux. For the amount of time you would have to invest just to get one game working though Linux you could have spent the $99 and called it good.
I think ReactOS is the better route and once it begins to take off will draw a lot of the Linux users away. This will begin to bring the cross platform stability everyone is looking for.
Microsoft will continue to be years ahead of ReactOS and will generally force most Hardware Vendors into a sort of cohesive unit .
ReactOS will run on any machine but you may have to put up with bad Development Drivers from Hardware that isn't Vista compliant nor will it be Supported.
Linux will continue to be used as a Primary Server OS and in Research mainly for Security Reasons.
Apple will feature a Mac OS that is based around the Windows Kernal in the next ten to fifteen years. This will happen two to three years after ReactOS is released to the general public.
May 12, 2008 1:57:00 AM


No one is talking about the BIGGEST impact on Pc gaming in recent history.

Microsoft decided to make DIRECTX 10 available only with an OS purchase.

Ben and Rob, you guys have to do a discussion on the Directx 10 fiasco. Hardware supports it, but gamers don't. Vista runs like a dog and is an unnecessary upgrade for gamers. The prior versions of Directx were not linked to an OS purchase.

Developers are getting seriously stuck in limbo. They can't access the power of the new graphics cards through directx 10 without alienating their target audience.

Microsoft announced a 'Gaming for Windows' push and then they screwed everyone with a massive cash grab called Vista.

Instead of playing Directx 10 games now, I will probably wait almost 2 years, when I purchase my next pc, to experiece it. (or directx 11?)
May 12, 2008 3:20:22 AM

3Flusher.... that is old news. Don't get me wrong, I was right in there bitching about that as well, but it would be a bit late to make an expose on it now....
May 12, 2008 8:59:49 AM

I'm sure most companies will do like they did with Bioshock and make the next two to three years of games run on both DX 9.c and DX 10.1. But in a way you are right and in three years you will have to make major Hardware Upgrades to continue PC Gaming. At that time you'll want prefetch and want to do away with a Paging File. At 8 Gig of Ram Prefetch works in an amazing way and not having a Paging File goes beyond describing as far as performance.
From Turn On to Full it's about 15 seconds and it's about 8 seconds to shut down. I'm trying to think of one thing XP did that Vista doesn't do better and I can't. Everything is so much faster, with less hassle, and no more viruses from all those Porn... OH wait.. I was joking... No I was... Damn!
May 14, 2008 12:41:48 AM

I heard a while ago Bill did not want another xbox since they are not making any money off it. I heard bill wanted to promote gaming on the PC instead of a console. That is what I always thought the purpose of games for windows was. To help perpetuate that.
May 14, 2008 11:00:12 AM

I personally don't see PC gaming dying.

From those who state it is, there seems to be three sources cited:

1. DRM - this is problematic, but I think that SecureROM and other anti-piracy measures will go the way of the dodo. I've sen several non-protected games do well, and I believe this will eventually be monitored with your standard CD key, no disc in the drive method. Most PC gamers are pushing in that direction anyways, and it'll eventually happen with enough complaints from legitimate purchasers.

2. Components and upgrading - Seriously, this is a load of bunk. I was using a 3-year old system (AMD 2800+XP) for years past its "lifespan". One game (an MMO) I really wanted to play made me upgrade, but with a little tweaking, I could have gotten it to work on my old system. A game released just recently with high reqs ran fine at medium-high settings. I did, in fact, get the beta of that MMO to run on my old system - I just felt it was time to experience 64-bit computing, and wanted to build a new system from scratch (being an IT guy anyway), so I purchased the components for a midrange system. Aside from the case and video card, nothing cost more than $130 for a single component. The total cost out of pocket was something close to $600.00. If you can't build, a Dell with a video card purchase should do you just fine, and get a 19" LCD monitor for free, to boot.

The fallacy is that you need to buy a new video card every six months. The only reason you need to do so is if you want to run every game at max settings. Factually, most people don't want this, or care. They'll upgrade once every two years to the BBFYB card, which costs all of $150. I don't know about you, but I can blow more than that on new releases every 3 months, let alone 2 years.

And if I hear one more person start talking about ram or HDDs, I'll kick them. RAM costs me $50 at newegg.com for a decent 2GB DDR2 stick - actually, it costs less than a current-release title. HDDs are (unless you buy a raptor or something) running at less than 0.10 a gig for a decent 7200RPM drive, especially if you get a newegg.com special. There are no other components to upgrade (if I hear "CPU", I'll puke. That's a three-year purchase and only needs upgrade really with a new OS from M$).

3. Title availability - While not many people talk about this (because it's not really a problem), it seems that this is the only other thing that would prevent people from going to PC gaming. There are not too many titles that are platform-exclusive anyway, so it's not really that big a problem. I've missed, what, two titles in two years that I wanted to play because of platform-specific issues. But there's no way in hell I'm buying a Wii, a PS3 AND an XBox360 for catching one title every year for each. While I can muster up the money, I suppose, $1800.00 in game consoles will be more expensive and less money returned than upgrading video cards every month.

I suppose there is #4, which is Bugs. Half the bugs stem from the piracy prevention in games, so will be solved eventually by just pushing for better DRM/no DRM. The other half is just part of the software industry at this time.

Let's take a look at WOW patch 1.0, shall we? It's been touted as this brilliant work of genius, but I remember Day 1 release. They had just as many bugs and lack of content as Vanguard (and don't blow smoke up my rear about how that's not true - I stumbled across a LOT of problems). The only difference between WOW and VG was that the devs for VG are asses and don't make a product for general consumption, and listened very little to feedback, did not survey, and made it for a niche crowd. Yeah, VG was THAT terrible.

So, it's been the standard for so long, I really don't see the issue here - avoid companies who are pulling a Troika and you're set. That just takes about 20 minutes in Google to learn about, and if someone cannot find out about a new release game being buggy or not in an hour of browsing the internetz, then you really do get what you deserve on that.
May 14, 2008 11:18:53 AM

Pulling a Troika eh? You mean making a spectacular under appreciated game that could have desperately used some more debugging time?

If Troika was still around I'd keep buying their buggy games because they knew how to make an engaging RPG. They just didn't know how to properly debug before release.
May 15, 2008 9:18:45 AM

It is only the FPS genre that is having problems as a pure pc platform. RTS and strategy games are doing just fine. The line between console and PC has blurred so much as that argument for or against the other seems silly. I used to hate consoles when you had to go to save points or type in codes for your progress. Since consoles got hard drives and network connectivity the difference between PCs and consoles is much more marginal. Though console gaming is dumbed down to only a few keystrokes rather than your entire keyboard with hotkeys.

The problem with PC gaming is
unrealistic expectations. Crysis sells 1 million copies and it is nearly considered a failure. Yet, there are many excellent games that sold 1 million copies on the PC and were considered good for sales. Also as stardock put it is developers need to make games for people who buy, not those who pirate.

High hardware requirements. Games seem to be made for computers in the last couple of years, but many people have older systems. This is why blizzard sells well for their games is due to the mass accessability. Most games have problems running with onboard video ram. Blame intel or blame the consumer, but the reality is the video ram for the majority of computers is onboard.

Buggy games. The philosophy of when it is done is one thing. Yet, games lost touch of when it is done and instead release games before they are ready. So people wait for patches before they buy.

Bloat code for OS. Microsoft is terrible for making more and more crap on your computer without any real benefit. If the OS was streamlined more to run games then we wouldnt need as much hardware to run them smoothly.

Short game play. Used to be 20-50 hours was standard for a game. Now 10 hours is more common.

PC only sales sell less than multipllatform. If you can get a game for a Wii, PS3, Xbox360 and PC then you have a much wider audience. It is little difference than if you make a wii only game. The smaller your target audience the less sales potential you have.
May 15, 2008 9:37:50 AM

Quote:
If only Blizzard did a Diablo...... (again)
Anyways this issue of Hardware requirements starts with Intel and Microsoft and ends with Vista Capable.......

Sometimes I like to fantasize about a Diablo 3/Diablo MMO. All other games would cease to matter.
May 15, 2008 10:59:36 AM

I love the smell of a doomsday post in the mooorning !!!

Lets debunk this one shall we ?

Oh noes, me no tecnitianz !! Me noes nothing about PCs, need moar helpz !!

I remember having to configure EMS/XMS and base memory (a whopping 640kb) so i would be able to game. This are getting easier by the year. Porting should be easy here. Glad M$ is thinking about it, because honestly, isnt the selling of consoles that makes money, but the selling of games. This is the strategy by the industry. Both have flops and good points. M$, $ony and Nintendo both have it.

Vista was a step back ? I consider it more a side step. Its wasnt a forward step, and basicly it wasnt backwards.
IMHO it should never come in a x86 version. That would stop most of the Vista Capable/Premium Ready scandal.

Like i said before, Joe computer is getting better at computers and computers are getting much better dealing with Joe computer aswell. If M$ could make a single DVD that would run in your PC and your Xbox, they would break even very quickly on game sales. They know it. And my guess is that they are going to try and do it.

About PCs that come with a **** IGP, thats something the brands must change (HP, DELL, ACER, etc). Its possible to make a cheap gaming PC atm almost at the price of a PS3. Its only but a matter of time. I dont consider PS3 a real gaming console, because i believe that most PS3 that are sold are going to be mainly used as a Blue-Ray player. Still believe its a flop.

About a diablo MMO, i hope it never comes out. Really. I have a good job. I have a nice Ms. I have other hoobies. All of this would disapear. Everything would seem a Cow Level or Andariel Rush :pt1cable: 
May 15, 2008 4:46:42 PM

PC gaming is not dying it is just the state it is in now. It is an a never ending flow up and down with console releases. I been gaming for over 20 years and back when the PS 1 came out...pc's were dying. Dreamcast, N64, PS2 every few years the same old bs. The difference in todays market is companies have been pushing shovel ware for games for a longtime. Unfinished products, broken code that should of been tested longer etc. PC gamers have spent good money on bad games with no where to turn when they want to return the bad investment. You no longer can take an open game back if it doesn't work or has Starforce on it which imo the brand of drm on software should be listed on the box. I want to know what they are putting on my expensive pc and I should have access to this info from day one on the box in a retail store without having to do any investigation online before I buy any software.

They blame piracy but they caused a lot of it by how they treat consumers. Give them a fair deal and a certain return time and you can make them have to authenticate the product say after 5 days evaluation of the product. After that the product does not work..ala Fade etc. But if the said product is a dud or defective or plain sucks let the consumer get his money back. But greedy publishers want to get the money even if they pushed the product out the door before it was ready. Patches should fix or tweak minor things or add content not make a game playable. It should of been playable before released so now all these publishers and even some dev teams cry Piracy is ruining PC gaming and it is BS. The drm added to most software effects the paying consumer far more than the pirates anyhow. The pirates have always been there and always will be. Make a great product and people will buy it but in todays world the consumer is savvy and knows there is a good chance the game is broken or sup par and they have no way to take it back. Demos help but more and more games are not releasing demos. I buy games from Stardock as they are great games with NO drm on them and they earn my money by trusting me as a consumer not treating me like a thief. Do you also know that a lot of pirates end up buying the retail game after trying out the pirated version. I have buds in China and they pirate everything overthere but he ends up buying what he likes so he can join us in gaming here and if the game is good he spends the money. So in most cases Iwould say the publishers end up getting the money on a good product.

Bad movies make no money... Bad games make no money.

I am a pretty hard core gamer but guess what...buying smart and knowing what is good enough has kept me out of the non sense that you have to have direct x 10 hardware or the latest pc. My pc is going on 4 years old. I bought it refurbished but it was near the highest end when I purchased it for around 1K. I have added 3 differrent video cards but never costed me more than 150. I added memory but that is about it. I played through Fear, Oblivion, Hitman BM, WoW, Vegas just fine. I avoided Crysis but I am ok with it. One game does not make me want to upgrade hardware. When there is a list of games I can not enjoy then it is time to upgrade.

PC gaming is going to be fine no matter the hype. Besides, pc gaming and console gaming has always co survived and will...some people actually play both. I own a ps2 for my sports games and my sons have a Wii. But I am a pc gamer in my 40s and I still enjoy it.

May 15, 2008 8:18:42 PM

psymanproductions said:
the other reason is that the kind of guy who knows how to do the techie stuff involved in building and maintaining a gaming rig also knows where to get his games for free... dont tell me you dont you liars


My favorite game is "Half-Life 2: Deathmatch" which is $5 off of Steam. Or it's available in a $10 package along with "HL2: Episode One" (which I am playing through) and "HL2: Lost Coast". It's a shame that people still pirate games when there are great games that are dirt cheap. Plus there are tons of free and awesome mods/games for the HL2 Source engine.
May 15, 2008 8:31:45 PM

PC gaming will never die. Although I say this mostly as a PC fanboy who grew up playing games and never consoles, the simple fact is that PC's are becoming an essential part of the American lifestyle. Additionally looking at the fact that consoles and console games themselves have to be designed on the PC means that as the overall father of consoles, the PC will never die away.

The console market is ridiculously large because of the type of audience it targets. The young, twitch happy, instant gratification-seeking gamers. The last thing this generation wants to do is have a delay between the purchase and playing of their game.

Consoles simply make it easy and quick to play. No hardware or software adjustments, everything is there when you need it to play. Yet consoles have PC gaming to thank for the incredibly fast technology rate. Without a need to upgrade and sell enthusiast level hardware for the hardcore crowd, consoles would stagnate at a tech level. M, Nintendo and Sony would starve for the technological innovation that comes out of the AMD/ATI and NVIDIA wars (INTEL vs AMD prevalent as well).

PC gaming is here to stay, why? Because it targets a different mentality than the consoles do. These gamers, like myself, will never be satisfied without the tweaking, adjustments and general tech love that comes from being someone who actually opens the case and stares lovingly at their mobo with custom CPU heatsink and SLI'd graphics cards. Oh and MMPORG's create a huge cashflow.

Piracy, here to stay it will never go away. There will always be pirates because of the innate human desire to satisfy the self interest at the lowest cost. Developers and producers worry excessively much about piracy instead of the part of game development that matters the most; the actual game. Create a good game and you will find that sales will exceed expectations regardless of how many pirate. Piracy should be viewed as a sunk cost, your game will be pirated no matter what you do. So take that into consideration and you need to excel in the game itself to sell it to those who aren't going to pirate. If you make a good enough game, we will come and we will shout it loud and clear the 50$ that we slap down.

A key point that most people here aren't discussing is a games longetivity. What happens beyond the initial say 20 hours of gaming is where great games distinguish themselves. The games that offer involving multiplayer, easy modification, and support beyond the initial launch are truly successful. This is the advantage of PC gaming here, something constantly overlooked. Console games are as is, there is no development, no change no advancement within the game itself. They are wholly dependent on the producer to continue with new content. PC gaming contains a whole array of creative individuals who can't wait to sink their teeth into changes and mods for the game.

And console piracy exists, you may not think so but with our tech savvy PC gamers are crossing over to consoles and thinking to themselves how can I get that for free. Easy enough, those who know know it only takes 80$ on ebay to get yourself a fully functioning drive to burn for the Xbox. Consoles may think they are safe, but this is only for the moment. If PC gaming ever dies piracy will live on still.

What people forget is that piracy is a constant. It never goes away, it is always adding itself to the equation and will always do so. You can't stop that without completely eliminating the freedom of the consumer. Accept piracy for what it is (good or bad) and move on. Piracy will not be a cause for PC gaming decline, that responsibility rests solely with the developers of the games.
May 16, 2008 5:52:55 AM

console gaming has more piracy than pc gaming, the only reason why it is more successful compared to pc gaming is that, a console lasts years and you never need to upgrade them to game,

all games for a console look ok but best of all they all run and they run smooth

with pc gaming, you get videocard companies pushing out new cards every 3-4 months, and game developers designing games around those new cards with out thinking that (hey most of these gamers just spend $200-300 on their geforce 6-7 series and are not willing to dump another 300-500 on this new card t run this game)



the main problem with pc gaming is system requirements and DRM

not everyone has the money to constantly upgrade to run these games

also the better the graphics, the harder the game is to make

so under tight deadlines game developers devote more of their time to graphics and very little on gameplay, so you wind up with games like crysis, which look good but have almost no gameplay

with older game systems, you would see a new game almost every 2-3 weeks but now your lucky to see even 1 or 2 a year



game developers are also stupid,

they see that over a billion people own a computer, and for some stupid reason they think there looking at a billion gamers

when in reality probably at most a few thousand people actually have the hardware to run the game, this greatly reduces their market


all games not are targeted at the extreme high end so out of the 1-2 million gamers, only 200-500 thousand of them will have computers that can run the latest games

game developers are really killing them self, it is like a crappy music with a bad story line, they try to make up for it with extra special effects and other visuals

the whole game industry is killing it's self, if you look around online you will see that there many people out there who have truly great and new ideas for games but have no chance of getting into the gaming industry where those ideas can actually be applied to make good games

it is currently impossible to get into the gaming industry to gaming is dying because were just milking a dead cow

the current developers brains have already been picked through and through, but they don't listen to the people and don't allow anyone new in or allow new ideas in

there millions of gaming ready consoles but only a few thousand gaming ready computers

90% of the pirates probably cant even run those games, they just want to see how their pc runs ot or just want to play it in all of it's laggy wonders


piracy did not kill pc gaming, game developers did by reducing their market from hundreds of millions to only a few thousand by making nearly impossible to run games and loading them with drm on top of that which causes many of those who can run it to pirate it


many high end gamers pirate because they cant get them self to not get the game.

they spend $600 on their videocard and that game is the only new game they can run and if they don't get it then the next game will require a new videocard and to avoid from having their videocard become a waste of money, they pirate the game

the geforce 6800 ultra was expensive when it first came out, but only very few games were able to run smoothly with it, newer games after that card needed a 7800 and after that, they needed a 8800 and now they need a 9800

and with there being only 1 or 2 games out each year, not getting the game is not an option because that will be the only game that they can run that will make use of their videocards power, thus justifying the $500-600 they spent on their card (at least in their head it does), because they surely know that the next game to come out will require the
Geforce 10800GX2 to run.

before a videocard wound handle gaming for a while so there were much more gamers able to run the games, now the requirements are in such a way that videocards become outdated and unable to game with in a few months


if you don't like the drm then don't buy the game, but if you don't buy the game then you will need to pirate it to avoid the drm because you must play that game or you bought that $600 videocard for nothing

it is like you buy a car today and the world ends tomorrow and you never got a chance to use the car, (if that happens then you went through the trouble of getting the car for nothing)


people don't DRM but they also don't like their $600 card going to waste to they pirate it

for console games, the crowd generally has less to spend on games and games are overpriced to out of all console gamers, probably 70-80% of them are pirating the games, but the console gaming population is just so big that the developers are still getting rich from it



the way to save pc gaming is to tone down the system requirements, no need to go overboard with the graphics, many pc games look better than xbox 360 and ps3 games but no one can run them

if they were to make the games look kinda like the console games in terms of graphics then users of the card speeds that have the performance of the geforce 6 series will be able to run then there will be a lot more people able to run the game and the game will sell more (the reduced graphics will just mean they will need to focus on gameplay more often (pc games will still look similar to console games graphics with requirements this low )

like with consoles, theres no graphics battle going on because the consoles are already at their limit
May 16, 2008 10:28:31 AM

Some good points made here. My opinion is:

PC game developers are losing their customers to consoles. Simple as that. I'd say piracy loses sales but the fact is that there are a lot of people with consoles and not a lot of people with decent PCs.

Out of people I know personally who play games, very few have good PCs but nearly all have a console of some kind.

Why don't they play PC games???
- Their computer doesn't run them well.
Why don't they run well?
- Because they didn't build the PC themselves; they don't know how to; they don't want to know how and any PC you buy in one piece from mainstream manufacturers will nearly always have some really crappy graphics card.
Most end consumer hardly knows what a graphics card is and doesn't know why the game doesn't run well.

Console games have XBox360 or PS3 marked in the corner - "Ah I have one of those; I can run that". End of story.

Piracy may be an issue but not one the scale many would have you believe.

Distributers are being stupid or looking for an excuse if they blame the downfall of PC gaming on piracy.

-They're losing sales to those moving to consoles (people tend not to buy two copies of a game)
-They're losing money on anti-piracy SW (1.People are going find ways around it; 2. You're blowing away consumer respect and trust).
-Piracy is rampant in consoles. It just is.

That's pretty much all I want to say for now.
May 16, 2008 12:15:56 PM

i had no idea pc gaming was dieing, as far as i'm concerned pc gaming was for the hardcore like me and its owning!!!!!!!!!!!!
can anybody say Starcraft2\Diablo 3 FTW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
user created content started from the pc.....
May 16, 2008 3:32:54 PM

kriminal said:
i had no idea pc gaming was dieing, as far as i'm concerned pc gaming was for the hardcore like me and its owning!!!!!!!!!!!!
can anybody say Starcraft2\Diablo 3 FTW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
user created content started from the pc.....



back in those days you had a new pc game coming out every few weeks, not any more

also think about this, back then a larger % of the pc community were able to run those games, until the graphics race started where developers only focused on graphics and very little on gameplay

and upgrading becoming 1 upgrade per game because the next game to come out will only run properly on the next gen videocard

so if they don't like the DRM, then they pirate it because they cant afford not to because that is the only game their card can run thats designed to take advantage of their card (no point in upgrading to a geforce 8800 in order to play pong )


each year the number of gaming ready computers decreases a gaming pc from the geforce 6 era cant handle gaming from todays games and if you look at many polls, steam did a few also, around 90% of the gamers are still hovering around the 6800's- 7800's

the next game developer will design their games to be run on a geforce 9 or geforce 10 series card and at that point they will blame piracy even more when in reality, the users who spent hundreds on their 8800 systems will not be ready to buy another videocard yet, so even fewer people will buy their games because the target market will be even smaller
and they may use an even worst DRM which will lead to even more piracy because after spending $600+ on that future geforce 10 series there getting that game designed for their card one way or another otherwise they will not be able to justify the price of their card because there will be no waiting for another game because the next game will require another videocard upgrade


i understand the need to have ever increasing graphics for games but it doesnt need to be so rapid,

if microsoft made a new xbox 360 every 3-4 months and you needed that new xbox 360 to play the latest xbox games
how many people do you thing would be buying xbox games now?

everyone is willing to upgrade but not every 3-4 months when a new videocard comes out



if a xbox 360 came out 1 month and only 3 games came out for it, and then 4 months later the xbox 370 came out and you needed it to run the newer xbox games that were coming out, then 4 months later, the xbox 380 came out and you needed it to run the next 1-3 games then a month later the xbox 380GX2 came out and you needed that console in order to run 1 or 2 newer games that took advantage of a new shader that requires a little more power. would you get into gaming with the xbox if you knew you would have to go through all of this just to be able to game?


would you go through this with your pc to be able to game?

console gaming is more popular because it lasts longer, during the lifespan of a xbox 360 before the next xbox comes out, the hard core pc gamer would have gone through at least 5 videocards costing over 400-500 each

if pc gaming was more gradual in that it required less frequent upgrades kinda matching the upgrading of a console, then pc gaming would be just as popular and just as big of a money maker for the developers

http://www.steampowered.com/status/survey.html

if you look at the one valve did

only about 9% of the gamers there have a high end videocard

but most of the gamers are on pci express,

the majority of the videocards hover around the geforce 5-7 series the performance of a xbox 360 is similar to that of a geforce 6800GT or a x800xl

more gamers adopted pci express because but changes bus changes only happen once in a while like a new gaming console

but less adopted high end videocards due to the frequency of new videocards coming out


game developers are constantly focusing on making the most use of the latest videocard that almost no one has (then when it doesnt sell they blame piracy)
May 16, 2008 6:42:49 PM

For instance I wanted to buy Overlord but once I found it had a drm I did not want on my pc I passed on this. Codemasters lost money on most of the pc versions of this game. They made it for the console and they sold as not the damaging drm in that version. So they say the pc is dying as the market did not sell as well on the pc vs the console. But this is a mixed truth as if they provided Overlord with a system the consumer was comfortable with it would of sold far better on the pc then it did.

I probably will pass on Mass Effect for the same reason...the drm on it. I want the game but not with the limit of only loading it 3 times. I often reload games over the years a few times as they are my games. I sometimes have to reformat my gaming rig once a year to keep it trouble free. I still have Baldur's Gate which I have played through a few times over the years and probably will load up again sometime. My game..My pc my right to play it when I feel like it as many times as I feel like it.

May 16, 2008 7:34:23 PM

@Barzenak's post
I actually meant to make this point. DRM like this will turn people away and some games won't work if the company folds up. One way around the DRM is to get a pirated copy and I have seen people do this just to avoid having to go through that crap.

@razor's post
A lot of this is true... but not to the extent you have it at. You're talking about running a game at MAX settings. A good card can last for a long while and even a $150 card at the moment can get you pretty far.
A lot of games do lack immersion in favour of graphics but innovation of any kind isn't bad. But many gamers won't buy a game unless it looks good (i.e., judging it by its cover). I think a better solution is more efficient coding and allowances for lower resolutions.
May 16, 2008 8:01:58 PM

thats the problem, when they design a game around max graphics and focus very little on gameplay, if you cant max the game out then all you wind up with is bad gameplay and crappy graphics and you get the worst of both worlds

like for me, i thought crysis was a below average game at best. it looked good at high quality but at that point the game became a flipbook or even slower

the graphics were good but the gameplay ranges from frustrating to boring and annoying

the game was just designed around graphics and they did nothing that has not already been done a million times by other games


for games like call of duty 4, i could run it on high settings and it ran ok. they did not try to outshine other developers in terms of graphics (even though the graphics were good)

the gameplay was just more immersing and gave you a good feel of the action.

even though it was short, the game took you through many aspects of combat.

based on the story line, they couldn't make the game very long or the game would have become repetitive

gameplay should come first and next gen should come when the gaming crowd is ready for next gen.

would you buy a xbox 360 if you had to get a new faster one every 3-4 months in order to play newer games?

and another problem is that developers are going beyond what hardware can handle so the latest is always still on the edge of not being able to run the game maxed out

and with new videocards, you are only seeing minute improvements in the speeds

compare the 8800GTX to the 9800GTX cant even tell the difference with out a benchmark but tht slight improvement will be completely exploited by developers and people will need it to max out the next game

May 19, 2008 11:21:13 AM

razor512 said:
http://www.shamusyoung.com/twentysidedtale/?p=946
Graphics Hardware is Killing PC Games


That is fairly old thread, but its point still remains. New titles demand a high end rig to be playable and to graphicly show its improvements. Graphics wise. Because honestly gameplay wise, things are getting really repetitive.

Honestly Nvidia and ATI should get a Unified Language so coders could do their job for both GPUs. About new "bling-mapping" and other advances in GFX well...i think we will just need to suck it up for now. With time i guess things wont evolve as fast. Or will be better projected *cross fingers*
May 11, 2009 6:21:10 AM

In my opinion the reason PC gaming is dieing is due to a lack of PC exclusive titles.

Q: What is the point ins spending $2000 dollars for a gaming rig to play the same games you could play on the X-Box 360, or PS3 which only cost about $350?

A:none

The other problem with the "Games for Windows" marketing system is that it doesnt guarantee the game will work on windows. Example I purchased Fallout 3 for 49.99, every time I go to install it I get this error message "An error has occurred while running the setup. Please make sure you have finished any previous setup and closed other application. If the error still occurs, please contact your vendor: Bethesda Softworks (http://fallout.bethsoft.com)." If I had purchased the PS3 version (same game for same price it would load right up and work no questions asked.

Furthermore, simply because a "game for windows" is compatibe w/ Vista as marked on the box, there is no guarantee it is compatible with 64bit vista, and in an effort to push sells vendors dont mind leaving out this critical info even though they are perfectly aware you will not be able to play that game if u have the 64 bit OS.

Another problem is that even the most high end PC gaming rigs cant seem to handle games as well as the consoles can. Far cry 2 on the PS3 runs smoother (higher FPS) on my PS3 then it does on my pc rig (i7 920, 6gb of ddr3 performance ram, and a gtx 360 graphics card.

Also, why is there no backwards compatibility for Windows games? Games that ran on XP and earlier versions of windows usually dont run on Vista.

I dont know enough about the software behind these OS's, or the mechanics of the graphics cards to say exactly who is to blame for this, but the problem exists and it shouldn't.

Reading the system requirements on the games box doesnt really help you determine if the game will work or not.

And I would rather spend my time playing games then trying to figure out how to get the games to run, which is what I usually end up having to do with my PC games.

In summary the xbox 360 has more exclusive titles than the PC. And out of the many cross platform game that have a PC version, only a few of them will likely work on your particular PC's configuration.

Its just sad that the most powerful system (the PC) is the system that can handle the fewest number of games.


May 16, 2009 1:16:10 PM

The PC market is about DOMINATION. you don't spec your rig to the max just to "play" the latest game. You max your rig to own the competition. The consoles put everyone on a level playing field because the average "Joe" wants to be able to sit on his couch and be somewhat competitive in the 3-4 hours he has before he has to go to bed for work in the morning. PC's are about performance and power. You spend the bucks for that Core i7 OC'd, the best and most ram your system will allow, high end SLI or CR cards and extra cooling and PSU not just to "play" but to RULE! To impose you will on other online players, to enter the arena not as just a mere player , but as the avatar of destruction. To be feared, hated and even revered. MUHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

Why do you need an advantage some might counter with. If you have an even playing field wouldn't the more skilled opponent win? Because this is WAR and in war you overwhelm your opponent. That's like us just sending the Navy to deal with Suddam during the Gulf conflict and keeping all or tanks, infantry, artillery and air force at home. In war you need all your assets, every advantage you have and you show absolutely no quarter. Cause losing sucks!

!