Game devs should not feel threatened by the windows 8 app store. They can still sell their desktop games the same way as they used to. They are only worried because if users start to gravitate to the app store they may stop purchasing desktop apps from other channels. If that does happen then that will only validate the direction they are going with the app store.
The certification process is a necessary evil to ensure that end user gets a good quality experience from these apps.
Here are some PROs of Windows 8 Store apps:
- The app can utilize more resources. All apps are required to properly support suspending and the possibility that the OS can terminate the app when it is not running. This means that an app store game can be a resource hog, and other open apps that are not running will get terminated if your app requires the resources used by that app. - Consistent ways to update all of your apps. No more Quicktime/Adobe flash updaters pop ups and the corresponding services that are constantly running in the background checking for these updates. - Security of the walled garden builds trust in the store and their apps. This will increase the number of users willing to take a chance on your software if you aren't a well known and trusted publisher. - Installing an app can only install that app. No more hidden installations of google toolbar and other crap that you didn't ask for. - Simple and easy way to uninstall an app, and uninstall it cleanly. Most desktop software today will leave things behind, such as loose files and additions to the registry. Which contributes to the decline in performance and disk space of the PC after several years. - Apps that go unresponsive (the grey ghosting of the title bar you see in desktop apps) are terminated immediately. This raises the bar on developers to write responsive UIs.
Classic desktop applications can still have a short cut tile on the start screen obviously. But the desktop app won't be able to take advantage of the above mentioned benefits of Windows Store Apps.
As for the desktop experience in Windows 8; I don't miss the start button at all. Instead of having a roughly 50x50 hot spot for the mouse to click on, there is a 4x4 hot spot right in the corner. I know where the start button is, I don't need the wasted pixels on my taskbar to show the Windows Logo. Not that I use it much anyways, since the Windows key on the keyboard has always opened the start menu and still has the same function.
I also definitely like the multi-monitor taskbar and having the taskbar icons show on the moniter where the applications are being displayed.
tldr; Lots of improvements all around. Devs should target the app store to reap the additional benefits it provides, or they can stick to the old way of doing things.