Microsoft Wants to Lead PC Revolution

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The GM of Microsoft Games Studios says the company needs to step up and put more resources behind PC gaming. Amen to that. I think we can all agree that it would be nice to see the gaming industry refocus its efforts on the PC.

“There’s been a fair bit of criticism aimed at Microsoft that we were spending a lot of our focus on console, and we need to be putting resources behind PC as well,” Microsoft Games Studios’ general manager Dave Luehmann told MCV in an interview.
 

HardOCP News

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Remember when PC games were ported to consoles? Now the trend is to port console games to PCs….wtf?
 

BETA.

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Nah, the community should lead a PC revolution. But, if a company has to lead, it should be Valve not M$
 

dr.stevil

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I really hope they actually mean it. I would love to see some innovation on the PC gaming side of MS... a new AOE would be cool too :)

Remember when PC games were ported to consoles? Now the trend is to port console games to PCs….wtf?

honestly, I don't really care where they start their life, as long as they make it to the PC and they're not half assed in the process.
 

cptnjarhead

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How about an operating system dedicated to games.. Small and fast.. with nothing baked in but what is needed to play games with hardware support.
Auto configure and console like GUI for noobs.. and plenty of advanced tweaking for tech heads.
 

Kangg

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Let's just say I'll believe it when I actually start seeing PC games come out of Redmond.
 

Cyrilix

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How about an operating system dedicated to games.. Small and fast.. with nothing baked in but what is needed to play games with hardware support.
Auto configure and console like GUI for noobs.. and plenty of advanced tweaking for tech heads.

Why? Are you saying Windows is not small and fast enough? Are you saying that Windows does not have the appropriate hardware support? I don't see what's wrong with the current setup for PC gaming, unless you're just ridiculously bad at computers.
 

PornoSatan

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Why? Are you saying Windows is not small and fast enough? Are you saying that Windows does not have the appropriate hardware support? I don't see what's wrong with the current setup for PC gaming, unless you're just ridiculously bad at computers.

He's basically trying to say he wants the amount of optimization a console gets in the form of an OS dedicated to gaming. It's common knowledge that consoles optimize and run games far far better if given the same hardware because there's only a single configuration and developers can develop around that down to the last megabyte, not to mention there's not as much overhead to go through at the OS level. It's a nice idea but unfortunately impossible because there's too many different PC configurations.
 

SixtyWattMan

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honestly, I don't really care where they start their life, as long as they make it to the PC and they're not half assed in the process.

If they start their life on the console they will be half assed from the start. We will never see interface like UT99's.
How about an operating system dedicated to games.. Small and fast.. with nothing baked in but what is needed to play games with hardware support.
Auto configure and console like GUI for noobs.. and plenty of advanced tweaking for tech heads.

I agree but it needs to come with dedicated hardware and proprietary accessories so I don't have to upgrade year after year.
 

Cyrilix

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He's basically trying to say he wants the amount of optimization a console gets in the form of an OS dedicated to gaming. It's common knowledge that consoles optimize and run games far far better if given the same hardware because there's only a single configuration and developers can develop around that down to the last megabyte, not to mention there's not as much overhead to go through at the OS level. It's a nice idea but unfortunately impossible because there's too many different PC configurations.

Right, because one configuration only would defeat the purpose of a multipurpose highly configurable personal computer... There's no need to turn the PC into "another console".
 

Ashtaka

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The big problem I have is I have felt that since the XBox, Microsoft has gone out of their way to harm PC gaming to make their console seem more appealing.

Couple this with their desire to branch out into every market and they seem like they have ADHD. Kin! Kinect! Zune!

I have a feeling someone finally realized, "Oh... crap. We just lost Bungie. Halo ODST and Halo Wars did not do as well as a legit Halo sequel. We have Halo 4 and maybe 5 before we see our golden goose start to lay regular eggs."
 

PornoSatan

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Right, because one configuration only would defeat the purpose of a multipurpose highly configurable personal computer... There's no need to turn the PC into "another console".

The idea behind it is to allow the latest and greatest graphics cards and CPU's to take full advantage of a game in a console like environment. Unfortunately the concept cancels itself out because the optimization itself calls for a single configuration.
 
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The big problem I have is I have felt that since the XBox, Microsoft has gone out of their way to harm PC gaming to make their console seem more appealing.

Couple this with their desire to branch out into every market and they seem like they have ADHD. Kin! Kinect! Zune!

I have a feeling someone finally realized, "Oh... crap. We just lost Bungie. Halo ODST and Halo Wars did not do as well as a legit Halo sequel. We have Halo 4 and maybe 5 before we see our golden goose start to lay regular eggs."

lol of course they would want people to game on the xbox. They have the PC market on lock with windows, now they can charge people for hardware, and get royalties from games produced for THEIR hardware, and then charge people a fee to play online. It makes more $$$ sense. All they, and any other company does, is follow the $$$.

WE PC gamers are being shafted but it makes sense why. I will continue to give my limited funds to game devs who focus on the PC like blizzard, valve, epic, id software, etc, console devs be damned ;-)
 

maxius

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Microsoft does not give a damn about the pc. every game i see a game that is released for the 360 that looks interesting i look for the pc version and i find nothing. microsoft is not actively involved in any way in getting games on the pc. whatever happened to the xbox/pc cross-platform play?

i have seen many game franchises that were released for the pc & consoles over the years just jump ship for the consoles and if the game is released its released 6 - 12 months after the console version is out and the media campaign has wound down.
 

SockMan!

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PC gaming could use a boost but I'm not sure if I trust Microsoft to take the lead - especially since they have their own console that they'd rather sell.
 

DeathPrincess

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Does anyone else remember when twisted metal had better graphics on the playstation version than the PC version, because they didn't bother to do hardware rendering? There must have been times before that.
 

kllrnohj

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It's common knowledge that consoles optimize and run games far far better if given the same hardware because there's only a single configuration and developers can develop around that down to the last megabyte, not to mention there's not as much overhead to go through at the OS level. It's a nice idea but unfortunately impossible because there's too many different PC configurations.

Like many things considered "common knowledge", it's also not true. The "console speed" largely comes from 2 areas.

1) Running at much, much lower IQ settings than you realize. Most console games (I mean the high end pretty titles, not arcade games) render at 1280x720 or *less*. At that resolution, things like the 7900GT can still handle games on medium settings and average 30 fps (also what most pretty console games run at) - which shouldn't be a surprise, since that is what a PS3 is running.

2) Tweaking the config. Look at all the ini tweaking guides for games. You can tweak inis to get much better performance without much IQ loss. If you want to put in the time playing with settings, you can get very close to "console optimized". And remember, the target is 30fps.

Now yes, there are those highly optimized games for consoles. But many of the optimizations have nothing to do with the OS, but with being able to target a single hardware configuration. The OS isn't slowing things down on a PC much at all (console's have OSes too).
 

Phatal

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Like many things considered "common knowledge", it's also not true. The "console speed" largely comes from 2 areas.

1) Running at much, much lower IQ settings than you realize. Most console games (I mean the high end pretty titles, not arcade games) render at 1280x720 or *less*. At that resolution, things like the 7900GT can still handle games on medium settings and average 30 fps (also what most pretty console games run at) - which shouldn't be a surprise, since that is what a PS3 is running.

2) Tweaking the config. Look at all the ini tweaking guides for games. You can tweak inis to get much better performance without much IQ loss. If you want to put in the time playing with settings, you can get very close to "console optimized". And remember, the target is 30fps.

Now yes, there are those highly optimized games for consoles. But many of the optimizations have nothing to do with the OS, but with being able to target a single hardware configuration. The OS isn't slowing things down on a PC much at all (console's have OSes too).

Agreed.
Real life illustration: I had a friend over and I showed him Batman:Arkham Asylum running on my PC @1920x1200 with very high settings, including physx. He was stunned at how much better it looked compared to his PS3 - and the PS3 doesn't look bad.
 

zero2dash

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Dear Microsoft,
I don't want you to "lead" any "PC revolution".

We already have Steam. Valve has this one covered.

We don't want more Games For Windows Live crap. We don't want your fake currency system (MS Points). We don't want you to start charging for online play just like you have done on your consoles.

Leave us alone.

Yours,
z2d
 

michael.pa2

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Microsoft has done more to kill PC gaming than anyone else,who are they kidding? All they care about is selling their crappy,antiquated consoles. If they were serious about leading a PC revolution,they would have released Halo Reach,and other games in the series,for the PC. Every time I see one of their puppets mouthing ridiculous statements like this,I despise them all the more for what they've done to gaming.
 

Mr. Bluntman

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Remember when PC games were ported to consoles? Now the trend is to port console games to PCs….wtf?

I still remember there were some pretty awful console ports in the late 90's as well, but people are right to argue the trend has disturbingly become the norm.
 

PornoSatan

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Like many things considered "common knowledge", it's also not true. The "console speed" largely comes from 2 areas.

1) Running at much, much lower IQ settings than you realize. Most console games (I mean the high end pretty titles, not arcade games) render at 1280x720 or *less*. At that resolution, things like the 7900GT can still handle games on medium settings and average 30 fps (also what most pretty console games run at) - which shouldn't be a surprise, since that is what a PS3 is running.

2) Tweaking the config. Look at all the ini tweaking guides for games. You can tweak inis to get much better performance without much IQ loss. If you want to put in the time playing with settings, you can get very close to "console optimized". And remember, the target is 30fps.

Now yes, there are those highly optimized games for consoles. But many of the optimizations have nothing to do with the OS, but with being able to target a single hardware configuration. The OS isn't slowing things down on a PC much at all (console's have OSes too).

None of what I said is incorrect. Coding GTA 4 or Crysis for example to run on a system with 256 MB main memory (like the PS3) has everything to do with the optimization and lack of OS overhead. Windows XP, which is almost 10 years old likes to use approx 128 MB memory for miscellaneus services, and that's at idle with no user specific applications running. That means you only have 128 MB of memory left on a PC for GTA4, good luck. It's alot more than laughable ini tweaks, and more in the realm of demo scene optimization.
 

cptnjarhead

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Let me expand on my post.
PC’s and the OS to run them were never designed to play games from conception.
Not to say that you cannot build a pc just for gaming… but your just configuring hardware for gaming around an OS that is designed for everyday tasks. The premise of my post was to have an OS that is dedicated to games.. built from the ground up in conjunction with hardware.
Even with all the different hardware configurations.. windows is still very capable of playing games along with other applications …so don’t tell me that it would be impossible to build an OS just for gaming.
Right now developers push the limits of consoles because that hardware is all they have to work with.. but when it comes to PC’s.. well.. its kind of a catch 22.. most games now are console first then out to pc if we are lucky and that is because consoles are the big gun when it comes to games… so why spend time and money developing for PC when you can cash in on console?
Consoles have the luxury of dedicated hardware and pc’s do not.. I get it.. but if you have an OS built just for games in conjunction with hardware.. with a rating system like vista/7.. then you could build or buy a system rated for the type of games you wanted to play as long as the software and hardware vendors were on board and developing for the rating system.
If you’re buying new hardware with said rating then you could build a system around the performance number you are trying to achieve.
Lets say the games you like to play are a level 5.. 5 being the highest.... then the CPU, video, ram, mobo, hard drive.. you purchase should be rated for 5.. and as long as you stick to level 5 hardware then you will be able to play level 5 games at maximum settings with maximum FPS.. why? Because developers would have a standard to go by.
Microsoft tried doing this with Vista.. but without ratings on hardware these numbers don’t really do much.
Buying components would be easier based on their rating and that would open up a whole new market of pc gamers. I realize this would require a joint effort with software and hardware.. but lets face it.. Even buying a system off the shelf say at Walmart would be easy because of the rating it has. I know that pc gamers would never buy from wall mart.. but that is the problem.. We are a minority when it comes to games. If more people got into PC gaming then maybe games would start on pc first then go to console.
Consoles are killing it in sales.. all because developers go for the big market which is a sound business decision.
Why not create a PC market capable of competing with consoles in sales?
If the PS3 had keyboard and mouse support with all of its games and pc games ported over.. plus office type software to run everyday apps…the sales of the PS3 would go up and Microsoft would be in serious trouble.. because the average person would by the PS3 instead of a PC.
I love my pc and I hate playing games on consoles.. but I feel we are going the way to the dinosaur when it comes to games.
 

GMcDougal

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i actually agree with this statement, one of the few things i can agree with microsoft on. I was a big fan of there games like motocross madness and monster truck madness. good stuff back in the glory days of pc gaming. oh the days...where did they go? :confused:
 

cowgod

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I have been longing for Microsoft to step up their game for years now. I was so elated when they first announced the Games for Windows initiative, and Games for Windows LIVE was supposed to revolutionize the PC market and bring Xbox 360 and PC gamers together as one harmonious group, collectively we are all just gamers--the platform shouldn't matter.

All the packaging will have the same banner across the top--good! We get a simple minimum and recommended number letting us know if our hardware can play a game (Windows Experience Index)--good! All games must support widescreen resultions--good! All games will have plug and play capabilities for the Xbox 360 controller--good!

Then, when Games for Windows LIVE launches, it is awful. I can't chat with friends or see who's online unless I'm in a game? I can't get invited or invite others to a game unless I'm already in game? I still have to put in the game disc to play, even though I've authenticated with the LIVE service?

I hate to say it, but I think it's too late for Microsoft to enter this market. People are so heavily invested in Steam now that they don't stand a chance. Every time I have to login to LIVE to play a game, I groan. None of my friends even know what their Windows Live ID is so I can add them, but they all know their Steam ID.
 

aggies11

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It seems like they've taken this "first step", several times over the recent years. They don't quite seem able to make it to step 2.

In all fairness, I believe this guy sincerely believes it, but Microsoft is a big company, and the PC Games division is just one of Parent Microsoft's many children. But it doesn't make nearly as much money, and isn't as "good looking" as it's other siblings (consoles), so it's often neglected ignored and forgotten about.

Trying to spear-head change at Microsoft must be one frustrating experience: forget about banging your head against a wall, it's probably more like flinging your entire body against a concrete slab!

That being said, we don't need them to put out games themselves, plenty of companies release great PC games. What we need is for them to improve some of the problems/difficulties facing PC games/development. Creating a massive hardware compatibility testing center (convincing all the other hardware partners to donate the equipment, as it's in their best interests to make PC games a vibrant industry) to improve compatibility and ease the testing burden facing PC games developers. And also co-marketing support for individual titles, probably less retail and more online oriented.

Make it both easier to play and to *make* PC games, and the games will do the rest. Microsoft easily has both the money and manpower to do this, but they are a giant entity with many heads, so it's probably way too difficult to get the requisite number of people to sign off on this, when the "Xbox" is a much sexier/ more notable group.
 

cowgod

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The premise of my post was to have an OS that is dedicated to games.. built from the ground up in conjunction with hardware.

I don't want an OS dedicated to games. I'm a PC gamer because I can play PC games as well as do a bunch of other stuff on the same hardware. Nobody is going to want a dedicated set of hardware AND a computer that have to be jury rigged to the same monitor, keyboard and mouse. It doesn't make any sense. The console works because it's in the living room. The PC works because it plays games very well, but can also do things besides gaming.

We [PC Gamers] are a minority when it comes to games.

Are you kidding me? There are more PC gamers than all console players combined, especially when there is a huge game release like Starcraft II.
 
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