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PC Gaming Alliance Formed

Top technology companies form gaming alliance (thanks Mike Martinez) officially announces the formation of the gaming alliance first revealed last week (story) to help promote/revive the PC gaming scene. Here's word:

Some of the top technology companies, including Intel, Microsoft, Dell, and Advanced Micro Devices joined forces Tuesday to form the PC Gaming Alliance, which will try to promote the PC as a gaming platform.

The alliance will bring hardware makers, software companies, and game publishers under one roof to "accelerate innovation, improve the gaming experience for consumers and serve as a collective source of market information and expertise on PC gaming," the alliance said in a statement.

The companies will work together on challenges facing the PC gaming industry, including piracy and the establishment of hardware requirements for PC games, the alliance said. PCGA also hopes to accelerate growth of the PC gaming industry and standardize the development of gaming PCs and software by developing and promoting guidelines.

The alliance comes at a time when PC video game sales are falling. PC games sales in the U.S. were $910.7 million in 2007, down from $970 million in 2006, according to research from NPD Techworld. PC game sales in 2007 dwarfed in comparison to the sale of software for video game consoles like Sony's PlayStation and Nintendo's Wii, which were $6.6 billion.

Unit shipments of PC game software totaled 36.4 million in 2007, compared to video game software unit shipments of 153.9 million, according to NPD.

The U.S. gaming industry already has the Entertainment Software Association, which represents vendors that publish games for both computers and consoles. About 90 percent of the $7.4 billion revenue of PC and console gaming software in 2006 belonged to ESA members, giving the association a dominant presence.

Other PCGA members include Acer, Epic, Nvidia and Razer USA.

The announcement comes during the Game Developers Conference, which is being held in San Francisco. During the show PCGA member Intel launched a new gaming platform formerly code-named "Skulltrail." The Intel Dual Socket Extreme Desktop Platform includes two quad-core microprocessors, totaling eight-processing engines, and supports graphics cards from ATI or Nvidia.

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90. Re: No subject Feb 21, 2008, 21:34 DedEye
Way back when, I went from a sega genesis to a 386. For me it was because games for PCs were different, and the control scheme was, and still is, far superior.

The games were generally more mature and covered far more topics and settings. Since consoles have become so popular, that line is now blurred. Many "adult themed" games are now available on the console, and this is to be expected given that gamers are aging and there are a number of different platforms on the market now. I have to say I am really disappointed and worried about the trend to "consolize" and make poor ports to the PC that I've experienced over the past couple of years. It simply doesn't take advantage of all the platform has to offer and is a deliberate decision on the part of the publisher to maximize profits and minimize costs. Back in the 386 days, PC versions had more features, not less. Why has this changed?

There are still games that I love that are, for now at least, only on PC. Every non-arcade flight sim for example. Which brings me back to controls. I can plug in a variety of controls and gamepads into my PC. How am I supposed to connect a programmable stick, throttle, and rudder pedals into a console? So let's make a console that accepts keyboard, mouse, and other peripherals. Let's see, it now has all this, a hard-drive, system memory, CPU, and GPU. Sounds like a PC to me.... a non-upgradeable, proprietary machine that is good for only a few specific things.

The PC as a platform is amazingly flexible and versatile, which is why it will likely remain my platform of choice. Contrary to popular belief (if it is), it does not cost a lot of money to maintain a decent rig. It will if you want a Ferrari, but you know, I think a Corvette is damn fine.

I remember spending a number of hours trying to free up 600kb of memory by fiddling with config.sys and autoexec.bat before successfully running Aces over Europe. I remember rebuilding Windows95 every 2-3 months. I waited a year before u/g to XP. I haven't had to rebuild the o/s once, even through a couple of u/g's. I can't remember it ever being this easy to play games on the PC as a platform. I waited to hear what Vista is like before taking the plunge. Glad I did, and so much for swimming Is there buggy software? Yep, there was back then too, even on the consoles (game breaking crash near the end of Sega's Outlander for eg.), but that's not the fault of the platform, that's the fault of the people making the software for it. Maybe it's a lack of tighter standards. If so, hopefully this group will address that.

I also recall way back when overhearing conversations about people d/l cracked games from BBS'. That, sadly, has not changed either, and still remains a poor argument for abandoning the PC as a platform.

So ends my stream-of-conciousness ramblings.

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