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EA: PC "Extremely Healthy" and Could Become "Our Biggest Platform"

An article on GameSpy by Chris Morris looks at the landscape of virtual goods sales within games, analyzing sales figures on various platforms and projecting what this means for the future. One of the sources cited is Frank Gibeau, president of EA Labels, who talks of how he sees the trend of free-to-play PC games continuing to grow. "If you look at the way people play in Asia, PC is the model," said Gibeau. "I think that the free-to-play model is coming to the West in a big way." So big, in fact, that he also made the following statement:

"PC retail may be a big problem, but PC downloads are awesome," said Gibeau. "The margins are much better and we don't have any rules in terms of first-party approvals. From our perspective, it's an extremely healthy platform. ... It's totally conceivable that it will become our biggest platform."

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52. Re: EA: PC "Extremely Healthy" and Could Become "Our Biggest Platform" Aug 17, 2011, 04:44 The Opera Ghost
 
Good Old Games. Direct2Drive. Steam. DOSBox. DirectX 11.

Better physics, faster graphics, massive storage. A billion and one other things to do besides gaming.

They'll have to pry my PC out of my cold, dead hands.
 
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51. Re: EA: PC Aug 15, 2011, 09:57 yuastnav
 
kanniballl wrote on Aug 15, 2011, 08:55:
[...]
There's nothing wrong with console-gaming. It's a great place for platformers and casual gaming. [...]

I'll take platformers on PC over platforms on consoles any time, thank you.
 
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50. Re: EA: PC Aug 15, 2011, 09:27 Verno
 
As someone else stated, what EA's idea of a healthy PC gaming platform and our idea of a vibrant PC industry are drastically different things.  
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Playing: Shadow of Mordor, Peggle 2, TIE Fighter
Watching: Capturing the Friedmans, The Jungle, Person of Interest
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49. Re: EA: PC Aug 15, 2011, 08:55 kanniballl
 
ColoradoHoudini wrote on Aug 14, 2011, 18:57:
If us smarter PC people could just influence/correct/educate the console kids and their parents about gaming.. we'd be better off. no more insta-buying every new shiny box just because it's on the shelf..and thus inflating sales numbers.
If the console world knew what they were missing and what they should expect from a title.. a boy can dream

There's nothing wrong with console-gaming. It's a great place for platformers and casual gaming. And if you can get by the fact that a controller is less accurate than a kb+mouse it's even fun to play FPS games on them.

PCs are both more powerful and versatile, but consoles are fun for gaming.

Now if only they could release some more powerful hardware... the current line-up is long in the tooth.

If the complaint is people buying the XBox 360 slim, the XBox 360 Halo Reach edition, the XBox 360 Red, etc... I can understand. Sometimes there's a good reason, like the new version runs quieter or cooler but otherwise it's pointless unless you're getting a second unit for a brother or something.

If the complaint is buying the next-gen stuff when it comes out, then that's just silly.
 
"Space. It seems to go on and on forever. But then you get to the end and a gorilla starts throwing barrels at you."
-Fry, Futurama
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48. Re: EA: PC Aug 14, 2011, 18:57 ColoradoHoudini
 
If us smarter PC people could just influence/correct/educate the console kids and their parents about gaming.. we'd be better off. no more insta-buying every new shiny box just because it's on the shelf..and thus inflating sales numbers.
If the console world knew what they were missing and what they should expect from a title.. a boy can dream
 
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47. Re: EA: PC Aug 14, 2011, 15:15 necrosis
 
Asmo wrote on Aug 14, 2011, 05:47:
Ironically, with some companies jumping their prices up on Steam re: Aus prices, it's now more advantageous for me to buy from ozgameshop/ozgamestore (30-40 AUD for most titles) than use Origin or Steam (EA, Bethesda etc charge in USD on Steam what brick and mortars in Aus charge in AUD)
Sounds more like you need to get after your government than the game companies. IIRC that's the real issue. Government backing the B&M stores demanding that nothing can be sold cheaper online because it would undermine the B&M's.
 
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46. Re: EA: PC Aug 14, 2011, 15:03 reisub
 
killer_roach wrote on Aug 14, 2011, 14:51:
RollinThundr wrote on Aug 14, 2011, 13:46:
That's why the only sports title they even do on PC anymore is Tiger.

FIFA as well, although apparently FIFA 12 is still using FIFA 11's engine on PC.
Where have you heard that? The devs have come out and stated the PC and console engines of FIFA 12 are identical. That's the only reason I was planning on picking it up, well that and the fact I haven't bought FIFA since '99.

This comment was edited on Aug 14, 2011, 15:11.
 
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45. Re: EA: PC Aug 14, 2011, 14:51 killer_roach
 
RollinThundr wrote on Aug 14, 2011, 13:46:
That's why the only sports title they even do on PC anymore is Tiger.

FIFA as well, although apparently FIFA 12 is still using FIFA 11's engine on PC.
 
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44. Re: EA: PC Aug 14, 2011, 14:39 Rockn-Roll
 
Slashman wrote on Aug 14, 2011, 00:50:
Bhruic wrote on Aug 13, 2011, 21:09:
I didn't say that at all. I just said we wouldn't be as far along as we have been, and it's true.

Because in your alternate no-MS universe, it's totally impossible that some other company could have stepped in and filled MS's role. If MS hadn't have done it, someone else would have. The reason we didn't have anyone else doing it is because MS monopolized the system so badly. You can say "we wouldn't be as far along", and yes, there's no way to prove you wrong, but I could say "we'd be farther along without MS", and there's no way for you to prove me wrong. Rather pointless speculation.

I'm not so sure that's accurate either. Apart from Apple, no one seemed to want to play in the personal computer space at the time. There was Commodore and Amiga...but I can't say that they failed because of Microsoft's monopolizing.

Microsoft's monopolizing became a factor afterwards when people began to realize that there was a goldmine in the 'average joe' having his own PC.

I'm not going to ever sing MS praises, but I don't think it's their fault that they have no real competition in the personal desktop space. They've done a lot of crud with the power that they do have...but I think they got it because no one else was trying to grab it at the same time.

I had just started my computer programming career in 1982. Personal Computers started with the Atari, Commadore, Texas Instruments, and Radio Shack. Apple was not a part of the PC revolution because their computers were too costly...the lowest price was like $800 back then when those other 4 dropped down to $250 for an Atari, $150 for the TI, and under $100 for a Commadore VIC20 and Radio Shack's Color Computer (COCO). But, for the most part these were mostly just game consoles with some home office style applications and a BASIC interpreter with an audio cassette storage outlet to save user created programs.

Each of those 4 Personal Computers had their own operating system, but some versions of their computers included CP/M which was a contender for the IBM PC operating system. It wasn't until IBM PC clones hit the market that operating systems really started to narrow down. There were eventually only two: CP/M and MSDOS (a version of IBM's PCDOS). CP/M had already been in use for years in various business computers and stand-alone word processing machines. MSDOS was mostly restricted to IBM computers. One of the reasons that MSDOS did so well was the fact that it was what IBM PCs used...and home users were frustrated with the first 4 "game consoles" and the limited applications available. They saw that there were hundreds if not thousands of programs available for MSDOS that would run on the clones and interested home users. CP/M had an equal number of applications, but most didn't run on the Z80 or 8086 and/or were for a specific business need that home users weren't interested in.

Now that the story is over...the last sentence is why we can't get another OS to totally replace Windows...it has too many applications available. Linux and open-source in general has come a long way and is currently a viable option. But, any operating system starting out would take like a decade to build up the number of applications available to make it worthwhile.

Heck, I could make an operating system better than Windows or Linux...I made a good start in school and changed the designs of my project to make it more stable. For example Windows and Linux both place the clean-up routine in the application pool instead of the system pool...which is why when an application crashes the entire system sometimes becomes unstable. But, nobody would use Rockn-OS even if it's better because there's no application software for it...other than what I could provide unless I could convince other developers to make builds for it. I suppose I could develop an OS that would run Windows or Linux executables, but I don't have enough spare time to do the reverse engineering or the political/marketing clout to get a license to run them.

No...we are stuck with Windows and Microsoft or Open-Source ala Linux. A link to some of this info is: here and some more specific to gaming is here: here

 
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Let's Rock!
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43. Re: EA: PC Aug 14, 2011, 14:29 Marvin T. Martian
 
LittleMe wrote on Aug 14, 2011, 08:34:
It seems to me that the next generation of consoles will not be nearly so bleeding edge to compete with PC as well as this generation was a few years ago. Also with phones & tablets the market is more diluted. Tablet games are more suited to PC ports than consoles also. Don't presume the next generation of consoles will cost $500-$600 like the last ones did. They won't. The centrally planned economy is still in the dumps and the PC is a far, far more flexible beast to deal with the current economic situation than a console maker.


Thosse flash games sure work great on the iPad, don't they!!!! lol
 
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42. Re: EA: PC "Extremely Healthy" and Could Become "Our Biggest Platform" Aug 14, 2011, 14:16 KilrathiAce
 
Too bad EA idea of PC is "Origin only", no thanks.  
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41. Re: EA: PC Aug 14, 2011, 13:47 Beelzebud
 
But see here in reality no other company did step up to the plate. If it weren't for Steam, Apple still wouldn't be offering much in the way of game support.

Of course in your alternate universe there were other companies that put a lot of money into R&D for video, input and sound, we just haven't heard of them.
 
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40. Re: EA: PC "Extremely Healthy" and Could Become "Our Biggest Platform" Aug 14, 2011, 13:46 RollinThundr
 
That's why the only sports title they even do on PC anymore is Tiger.  
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39. Re: EA: PC "Extremely Healthy" and Could Become "Our Biggest Platform" Aug 14, 2011, 10:55 Hump
 
Please don't tell me that, heaven forbid, the suits are starting to realize they need to come up with new business models that are in line with the way people want to play their games and not whine about piracy "killing the industry".  
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"Both the “left” and the “right” pretend they have the answer, but they are mere flippers on the same thalidomide baby, and the truth is that neither side has a clue."

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38. Re: EA: PC Aug 14, 2011, 10:28 Tony!!!
 
Considering this is the LONGEST the public has gone without a new console release...yeah. When the next batch of consoles come out....  
-Tony!!!;)
my 360 user name is Robo Pop
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37. Re: EA: PC Aug 14, 2011, 10:21 WaltC
 
killer_roach wrote on Aug 13, 2011, 15:30:
Nothing about the next console generation changes what he's said. The problem is how much interest consumers have in PC gaming once the next generation of consoles comes out.


With ever more powerful PCs coming down the pike at ever-lower prices, I don't think it's a question of "consumer interest" in PCs, I think the real question is: How long do consoles have?

PCs enjoy economies of scale that console manufacturers can only dream of (PCs are selling > 300 million units a year.) I don't think it will be long at all before you can buy desktop PCs in the $300-$400 price range that have multiples of a given console's processing power, 3d rendering power, storage space and many other things that consoles don't offer at all. That's console country at the moment in terms of pricing, but when fairly powerful desktop PCs arrive in that pricing space the only thing that Microsoft or Sony will be able to do is either to slash the price of their consoles down into the $100-$200 range, start selling Microsoft & Sony branded PCs that are called "consoles" for the sake of tradition, or just give up the ship and walk away from the console business.

I think that people forget that consoles were originally introduced as a concept back when a "gaming PC" might cost as much as $5,000. Against that sort of backdrop, a $300 console was the perfect compromise product that would allow people to game while not costing them an arm and a leg in the process. The economic rules that originally made consoles attractive to people simply don't apply anymore, however. So, I think it will be interesting in the upcoming years to see just how long the console as a concept will be able to hang on in the face of the inevitable $300 UberPC...;)

 
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36. Re: EA: PC Aug 14, 2011, 08:34 LittleMe
 
It seems to me that the next generation of consoles will not be nearly so bleeding edge to compete with PC as well as this generation was a few years ago. Also with phones & tablets the market is more diluted. Tablet games are more suited to PC ports than consoles also. Don't presume the next generation of consoles will cost $500-$600 like the last ones did. They won't. The centrally planned economy is still in the dumps and the PC is a far, far more flexible beast to deal with the current economic situation than a console maker.

 
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Perpetual debt is slavery.
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35. Re: EA: PC Aug 14, 2011, 05:47 Asmo
 
Ironically, with some companies jumping their prices up on Steam re: Aus prices, it's now more advantageous for me to buy from ozgameshop/ozgamestore (30-40 AUD for most titles) than use Origin or Steam (EA, Bethesda etc charge in USD on Steam what brick and mortars in Aus charge in AUD)  
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34. Re: EA: PC Aug 14, 2011, 03:06 J
 
Goomich wrote on Aug 13, 2011, 19:02:
Veterator wrote on Aug 13, 2011, 17:38:
Then they lock us in the DRM lined basement for a few years while they bring their girlfriend(s) over named Xbox and PS3......until they get just a tad too old for EAs taste and they decide to drag us out of the basement with nice words.

But this time I've met that guy, his name's Minecraft. He taught me how to dig out myself from this basement using only 1 hand.

I think Minecraft paved the way for a lot of fresh development on the PC. It all begins by punching a tree!
 
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33. Re: EA: PC Aug 14, 2011, 02:10 Jerykk
 
"Free to play" is the most pathetic idea and I hope it dies hard and fast.

There's nothing wrong with the concept of free-to-play. It's all about implementation. If microtransactions are restricted to purely aesthetic items, that's fine because it has no impact on the gameplay experience.
 
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