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Croteam on Windows 8 Issues

A post on the Steam Users' Forums from a couple of weeks ago offers a distressing overview of Windows 8 from Croteam (thanks Gamer's Hell), as Alen Ladavac says: "I would very much like to clear this one thing. I think that this is very important as there are 'under the hood' motions related to Windows 8 that are hidden and not well understood even by many developers (yet), and certainly not by most gamers." Saying "Gabe Newel did not overreact," he goes on to describe how "under the hood, the new tiled UI is a means for Microsoft to lock Windows applications into a walled garden, much like the one on iOS." Here's more:

There is this "small detail" that Microsoft is not advertising anywhere, but you can find it dug deep in the developer documentation:

One cannot release a tiled UI application by any other means, but only through Windows Store!

I cannot even begin to stress out just how horrible this idea is! There is no side-loading, except for corporate use inside one company, and that works only on the enterprise edition of Windows 8. Do we all understand what that means? You cannot download an application from the Internet and run it on your computer. You have to get it from Microsoft's store. Even if it is a free app!

If it was just about "being downloaded from Windows store", it would not be a problem. It would be nice to have a common hub to download things from. But to get an app onto that store, it has to be certified by MS. This means bringing the "console experience" onto your desktop. Each app that you will get through the Windows Store will have to adhere to certain requirements imposed by MS. So far, we know that they've banned mature games, like Skyrim, CoD, and Serious Sam.[*] They have forbidden modding. They could very well forbid Open Source if they want. But even if these terms were not there, this is still a certification system. With all of its downsides, including uncertain release dates, rare and late patches, and everything turning out to be more expensive and sucking more.

While, theoretically, desktop applications are exempt from these requirements, it looks more and more like just a foot-in-the-door technique. A large number of developers have expressed their concern with possibility that, probably in Windows 9 or something like that, the ability to get even desktop apps in any other way than through Windows app store may very well be removed. When that happens it will be too late.

I would not invest into supporting the tiled UI apps (which MS now conveniently calls "Windows Store apps" - does that ring a bell?), until MS removes the requirement that they have to be shipped through Windows Store on desktop at least - and thereby remove the requirement of certifying them with MS. Certification is a broken concept and should be abolished.

Now, while in current state Windows 8 do look like they support plain desktop apps seamlessly, the removal of start menu and use of "charms" even on the desktop looks like a pretty blunt attempt to force users to "get used" to the tiled UI. It would be fine by me if it wasn't for the aforementioned certification issue.

So, it is a vicious circle. And not an accidental one. This one was carefully designed to be that way. I say: no thank you, I'll skip on that one.

* (Our footnote, not Alen's): He seems to have missed this story).

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153 Replies. 8 pages. Viewing page 7.
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33. Re: Croteam on Windows 8 Issues Nov 17, 2012, 18:08 Mordecai Walfish
 
NegaDeath wrote on Nov 17, 2012, 17:20:
-Removing gadgets from the desktop. Wtf MS? Gutted entirely and requires ANOTHER mod to correct. Yet another exile worthy idea.

AFAIK gadgets were removed because of security issues with them, as outlined by this article

MS even issued a patch that they recommend users apply to completely remove desktop gadget functionality

This probably did not come in the form of a normal windows update because it breaks functionality of installed gadgets that people are currently using.
 
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32. Re: Croteam on Windows 8 Issues Nov 17, 2012, 18:05 DG
 
Dades wrote on Nov 17, 2012, 14:36:
DrSquick wrote on Nov 17, 2012, 14:31:
I don't get what all the hoopla is about, I only look at the start menu for a couple seconds; I dragged all my important apps to the left side, so I hit the windows key, and click the app I want, then the metro interface goes away. I'm guessing this is about people who want to make fullscreen metro games?

WinRT developed apps are what he was referring to. [...]
what is the importance of these WinRT apps?
 
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31. Re: Croteam on Windows 8 Issues Nov 17, 2012, 18:03 StingingVelvet
 
NegaDeath wrote on Nov 17, 2012, 17:20:
If Croteams fears come true about Windows 9 being even more walled then they've lost me as a customer permanently.

Pretty much. If the fears end up being well-founded then 7 is my last OS for gaming and I keep my machine for legacy purposes. If the fears are as paranoid as I hope they are then I will upgrade when 9 comes out, skipping over 8 like most people skipped Vista.

It's not really an immediate concern though, since it's only a portion of the OS and entirely circumventable.
 
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30. Re: Croteam on Windows 8 Issues Nov 17, 2012, 17:58 Tom
 
NegaDeath wrote on Nov 17, 2012, 17:20:
-Performance improvements. I have a small 60GB SSD and 4 megs of ram (that I will not be expanding until mid next year) and Windows 8 takes up less of that. Nice.

Windows 8 runs with 4 megs of RAM? Now that's what I call a performance improvement!
 
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29. Re: Croteam on Windows 8 Issues Nov 17, 2012, 17:30 Overon
 
Windows has in the past and must remain an open platform otherwise there are anti trust issues I think.

The concerns in this article are valid, but I think perhaps certain predictions are yet unjustified.
 
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28. Re: Croteam on Windows 8 Issues Nov 17, 2012, 17:20 NegaDeath
 
I have similar reservations as Croteam, Gabe et all but we're not at that point yet. I was due for a reinstall so I gave Windows 8 a try last night. I've been vocally against it in the past for some of their design choices, but I'm not shallow enough to make a final decision without trying it once. Here is my mini review.

Positives:
-Performance improvements. I have a small 60GB SSD and 4 megs of ram (that I will not be expanding until mid next year) and Windows 8 takes up less of that. Nice.
-New features like the OS refresh option, improved task manager, much improved upgrade installs.
-Came pre-installed with everything for my system except for Logitech mouse software. Even my video card had current drivers. This was probably the most complete install I've ever had.
-Speedy install. I did a partial upgrade install that kept my personal files but dropped windows setting and programs so I could keep the OS clean. Up and running fully in the fastest time ever.

Negatives:
-Metro. Metro metro metro metro. It's a fisher price designed piece of shit. If I could transfer it to a DVD I would proceed to toss that DVD into a wood chipper and burn the remains. Classic shell was the first thing I installed and I will never, ever look back. Its utter insanity that they made it the mandatory default on a PC, whoever came up with that idea should be exiled from the industry.
-Removing gadgets from the desktop. Wtf MS? Gutted entirely and requires ANOTHER mod to correct. Yet another exile worthy idea.

In summary the default Windows 8 is the worst OS they've ever released. Once you patch out the stupid (which took 10 minutes) its better than 7. I will not support their closed wall store and xbox live garbage, if I have my way I'll never even see it again. If Croteams fears come true about Windows 9 being even more walled then they've lost me as a customer permanently.
 
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27. Re: Croteam on Windows 8 Issues Nov 17, 2012, 17:05 Dades
 
bigspender wrote on Nov 17, 2012, 16:52:
so whats the big deal? make your game anyway you want, and then release a separate tiled application to act as a live shortcut if you so want.

I doubt it would pass certification.

- DADES - This is a signature of my name, enjoy!
 
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26. Re: Croteam on Windows 8 Issues Nov 17, 2012, 17:01 Mashiki Amiketo
 
theyarecomingforyou wrote on Nov 17, 2012, 16:53:
]See above. Just because they haven't come under much scrutiny yet that doesn't mean they shouldn't. The EU was in the process of investigating Apple with regards to iTunes' DRM restrictions, unless Apple dropped it altogether.
And yet they haven't, and in turn other companies are emulating said behavior because regulators aren't regulating. Apples DRM restrictions though aren't the same thing as the app store that Apple runs, Google runs, or now that MS runs either. Though there appears to be more competition in terms of apps, and 'who can run what and where'.
 
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25. Re: Croteam on Windows 8 Issues Nov 17, 2012, 16:53 theyarecomingforyou
 
DangerDog wrote on Nov 17, 2012, 16:12:
Because Apple can, and to a small extent Google with the play store.
Google Play is optional on Android, as you can use any competing store - that's exactly what Amazon has done. As for Apple, my opinion is that they should come under scrutiny for limiting the market.

Mashiki Amiketo wrote on Nov 17, 2012, 16:12:
So, has apple come under regulatory scrutiny yet?
See above. Just because they haven't come under much scrutiny yet that doesn't mean they shouldn't. The EU was in the process of investigating Apple with regards to iTunes' DRM restrictions, unless Apple dropped it altogether.
 
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24. Re: Croteam on Windows 8 Issues Nov 17, 2012, 16:52 bigspender
 
so whats the big deal? make your game anyway you want, and then release a separate tiled application to act as a live shortcut if you so want.

or just make a normal shortcut :S
 
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23. Re: Croteam on Windows 8 Issues Nov 17, 2012, 16:27 Ozmodan
 
Mashiki Amiketo wrote on Nov 17, 2012, 16:12:
theyarecomingforyou wrote on Nov 17, 2012, 15:52:
I'd be incredibly surprised if Microsoft didn't come under regulatory scrutiny, as the requirement to use the Windows Store to distribute WinRT apps is fundamentally anti-competitive. I honestly don't understand why Microsoft thinks it can get away with it.
So, has apple come under regulatory scrutiny yet?

Yep, Microsoft is just watching apple. Excellent point.
 
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22. Re: Croteam on Windows 8 Issues Nov 17, 2012, 16:18 Soulburner
 
I love Windows 8. It's fast, I like the desktop UI changes, I even like the Modern UI apps and the start screen. I use it on a desktop PC and see no issues with it being designed for touch.

But I agree with these comments from Croteam, Gabe Newell, etc. Closing the platform is a really bad idea. I hope more developers voice their concern - maybe Microsoft will change its mind? I don't think that's likely, but if game developers avoided the Windows App Store and "Metro" apps, it would make Microsoft execs at least think about it.

Since I'm a satisfied Windows 8 user, I hope all the criticism of the app store doesn't impact the games I run on the desktop. It would really suck if a game would run flawlessly on Windows 7, but would crash or otherwise work badly on Windows 8, just because developers don't agree with the Modern UI app store philosophy.
 
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21. Re: Croteam on Windows 8 Issues Nov 17, 2012, 16:12 Mashiki Amiketo
 
theyarecomingforyou wrote on Nov 17, 2012, 15:52:
I'd be incredibly surprised if Microsoft didn't come under regulatory scrutiny, as the requirement to use the Windows Store to distribute WinRT apps is fundamentally anti-competitive. I honestly don't understand why Microsoft thinks it can get away with it.
So, has apple come under regulatory scrutiny yet?
 
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there is a neat, simple solution;
and it is always wrong."
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20. Re: Croteam on Windows 8 Issues Nov 17, 2012, 16:12 DangerDog
 
theyarecomingforyou wrote on Nov 17, 2012, 15:52:
I'd be incredibly surprised if Microsoft didn't come under regulatory scrutiny, as the requirement to use the Windows Store to distribute WinRT apps is fundamentally anti-competitive. I honestly don't understand why Microsoft thinks it can get away with it.

Because Apple can, and to a small extent Google with the play store.

The RT version of Surface is going to be the next Zune for MS and it's their own fault, they could have easily cleaned up the tablet market space if they had.

a) Released an inexpensive x86 based hybrid tablet / pc that ran metro apps and regular desktop apps.

b) made the platform open for developers and enthusiasts alike to create programs for the metro UI, create incentive programs to release programs for the microsoft app store but not make it a requirement.

c) offered an educators discount for the tablets to be entrenched into k through 12 schools. All those kids would then tell their parents to purchase the MS tablet. As it is, schools are investing in Apple ipads - most without any discount and guess what tablet the kids are telling their parents to buy.
 
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19. Re: Out of the Blue Nov 17, 2012, 15:55 xmb1121
 
All I see in the MS Store are things like Angry Birds. If that's where Cryteam is heading, then they deserve what they get. I prefer a honest to goodness PC gaming experience when I sit at the computer, not a tablet/phone experience. I humbly implore them to keep making 100 proof desktop games not 99 cent jello shots.  
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18. Re: Croteam on Windows 8 Issues Nov 17, 2012, 15:52 theyarecomingforyou
 
I'd be incredibly surprised if Microsoft didn't come under regulatory scrutiny, as the requirement to use the Windows Store to distribute WinRT apps is fundamentally anti-competitive. I honestly don't understand why Microsoft thinks it can get away with it.  
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17. Re: Croteam on Windows 8 Issues Nov 17, 2012, 15:37 jonbly
 
Oh noes! MS have seen all the parasitic profits made by Apple and Steam from other's apps, and they want a slice of the pie!

Duh...
 
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16. Re: Croteam on Windows 8 Issues Nov 17, 2012, 15:35 ASeven
 
Dades wrote on Nov 17, 2012, 14:43:
There is no financial incentive for microsoft to keep supporting them in the long term.

There is, if Win8 sales are piss poor. MS won't be able to ignore the fact that their cashcow, Windows, is doing poorly. They certainly won't be able to survive on their console business alone, that's for sure.

Then again, this is what they get for neglecting the PC market to the point they become deluded enough to launch Win8 and its slippery slope.
 
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15. Re: Croteam on Windows 8 Issues Nov 17, 2012, 15:31 ASeven
 
Thank goodness all indications seem to show that Win8 is currently a sales disaster. The biggest share of clients of a new Windows, companies and corporations, don't want to touch it like PC gamers don't. There's simply no reason whatsoever to upgrade from Win7 or even WinXP, despite what MS fanbois might say.

If this turns out to be a huge financial disaster for MS, as the indications seem to show, I wonder how long Balmer will be able to survive.
 
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14. Re: Croteam on Windows 8 Issues Nov 17, 2012, 14:43 Dades
 
Prez wrote on Nov 17, 2012, 14:40:
One cannot release a tiled UI application by any other means, but only through Windows Store!

How many times have I heard this would not be the case by people here pitching Windows 8 as the greatest thing since sliced bread? No way in hell I'm buying Windows 8, or any other Windows OS ever if this is where they are headed. Time to start learning Linux.

The microsoft buttboys use the excuse that you can just keep using the desktop applications, as if those are bulletproof in a market where microsoft could get 30%+ revenue instead of 0%. There is no financial incentive for microsoft to keep supporting them in the long term. I have no problem seeing a future DirectX be exclusive to Metro apps or require some sort of Metro compatibility layer. Microsoft is indifferent and sometimes even hostile to pc gaming, they even use the Xbox brand names for pc gaming shit now.

- DADES - This is a signature of my name, enjoy!
 
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153 Replies. 8 pages. Viewing page 7.
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