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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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76. Re: No subject Feb 20, 2008, 21:08 Yosemite Sam
 
#62 If you can't find a PC game you want in a store, you can probably buy it from one of the download services. Steam, Stardock, ...

Yes I realize that, its just something I dont do. I guess I just want some actual physical evidence of where my $50 just went, and I'm sure I'm not alone. We are talking about overall video game sales and if you want to move product you have to have product on the shelf for people to buy. I hate to say it but EA knows the score in that department. I bet anyone of us could, right now, go to a local store and buy a copy of BF1942.

That "Games For Windows" label is like a kiss of death for PC titles. Making games only for Vista has just about killed the PC games industry. Too many customers got burned by unknowingly buying games that they couldn't play or return. Too many retailers got burned by having pissed off customers fuming at them and trying to return open software. Even if they change the label to not be only for Vista, the damage is done.

Along the same line, I think a big issue of PC games has been the quality of shipped product. The industry seems to think that there is no need to debug there product, becuase they can just patch-it. So now they can ship on a pre-set timeline and just finish it up in patches. How many people do you lose because they buy a game get it home and it doesnt work right. Hell my sister bought roller Coaster Tycoon 3, real happy and excited to play. Couple hours later shes practically in tears becuase her park is shit, nobody rides the rides and shes got a park full of pissed off poeple becuase the AI is fricken shit and deosnt work, hell even after the patches the AI in that games is crap to the point the game is almost useless.
Now I notice that with the ability to patch console games they are starting down that same road, ship now fix later.
Big business is whoring as much as they can as fast as they can, sounds familiar... hmmm 80's, rushing out shit games to ride the boom, hmm what happened then? oh ya public said fuck you and the industry crashed hard, bunch of ET games buried out in the desert somewhere... if the industry throws itself off of a cliff again it will be consoles and big production houses that die, not PC gameing. PC will just go back to its roots, sure there will be no crysis or COD4 but commander keen was a pretty fun game.







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75. Re: Our savior! Feb 20, 2008, 20:51 Krovven
 
If Sony would really like to screw Microsoft, they would mandate keyboard and mouse support for all FPS, RPGs, and strategy games on the PS3.

Absolutely, but they must have re-bindable controls. Third Person shooters as well.

They should lead by example and patch Resistance Fall of Man for M+K support, and make sure it's in Resistance 2 from the start.

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74. No subject Feb 20, 2008, 20:35 Ouch
 
As far as hardware goes, there is no excuse these days for any even halfway modern computer not to be able to run a new title. Maybe they might be expected to cut the settings down but it should still run.

If a new title doesn't run on a relatively modern computer then then the programmers simply don't know how to(or didn't even bother to) optimize.

On the software end, Windows-Vista-only, in which companies go out of their way to make sure that the majority of PC owners can't use their title, is suicidal.

 
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73. It's about the hardware Feb 20, 2008, 20:23 UnderLord
 
As some of you realize, but I said it first ;-)
http://www.bluesnews.com/cgi-bin/board.pl?action=viewthread&threadid=85112


 
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72. Re: No subject Feb 20, 2008, 19:59 Jerykk
 
Then, well, 10 years later I'm still sitting here playing PC Games while my XBox360 is collecting dust in the entertaiment center. I'm not too worried.

You should be because more and more PC games are becoming ports.

 
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71. Re: No subject Feb 20, 2008, 19:55 Valtyr
 
Must be that time again...

I remember just before the PS2 and the XBox launched people were predicting how PC gaming is a thing of the past. How consoles will take over and simply swallow whomever is still using a keyboard and mouse to play games.

Then, well, 10 years later I'm still sitting here playing PC Games while my XBox360 is collecting dust in the entertaiment center. I'm not too worried.

 
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70. No subject Feb 20, 2008, 19:47 Ouch
 
That "Games For Windows" label is like a kiss of death for PC titles. Making games only for Vista has just about killed the PC games industry. Too many customers got burned by unknowingly buying games that they couldn't play or return. Too many retailers got burned by having pissed off customers fuming at them and trying to return open software. Even if they change the label to not be only for Vista, the damage is done.

Most retail space was already vanishing for PC games. EB games here stopped carrying any PC titles at all. Retailers just don't want to deal with the hassles related to most customers not being able to run their games and then trying to return them after the box is open.

 
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69. Re: No subject Feb 20, 2008, 19:39 Nate
 
#62 If you can't find a PC game you want in a store, you can probably buy it from one of the download services. Steam, Stardock, ...

 
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68. Re: Our savior! Feb 20, 2008, 19:28 LemonJoose
 
Amen. This Skulltrail crap is emblematic of the ever-increasing degree of abuse with which all of these companies have treated PC gamers over the last 5 years in particular. Companies like Intel and Nvidia simply viewed PC-gamers as suckers who by the millions would blow huge wads of cash on ever-more-outrageously expensive hardware such as Extreme edition processors, Triple-SLI using $500 videocards, etc. Game companies who were actually stupid enough to target PC hardware that high-end compounded the problem. The only thing keeping me involved with PC gaming at this point is the keyboard/mouse interface for FPS and MMORPGs. If Sony would really like to screw Microsoft, they would mandate keyboard and mouse support for all FPS, RPGs, and strategy games on the PS3. If that happened I could buy a PS3 and a Macbook and be done with MS forever.

 
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67. Re: gimme flight and space sims please 8 Feb 20, 2008, 19:26 WebDemon
 
I had hoped that this would be the thing that brought me back to PC gaming because after 20 years of it, and playing a 360 for the last year, I REALLY miss the depth that the PC brings. Sadly, it just looks like a gang selling overly expensive shit that people don't really need to run games on. The very reason I left in the first place. When PC gaming doesn't cost me several grand every year and a half or so, I'll be back. They should have standardized AT LEAST 15 years ago. If they had, PC gaming wouldn't be the bleak place it is today. And before I get flamed for the last line there, if you really were gaming on a PC for the last 20 years or so, you'd KNOW that it's pretty bleak right now.
It's not going to die as some predicted, but it's not exactly a healthy baby boy right now. The other old farts will know what I mean.

 
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66. Re: No subject Feb 20, 2008, 19:18 Jerykk
 
I like CS and I liked DoD (before they ruined it), but just playing CAL matches of the same mod until the end of times doesn't really make you a PC gamer or loyalist imo.

QFT. Playing one game repeatedly doesn't make you a hardcore PC gamer, it makes you hardcore [insert game name here] player.

 
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65. Re: gimme flight and space sims please 8) Feb 20, 2008, 19:17 >U
 
I hope PCGA does something that actually benefits consumers in some way instead of hurting them.
It only benefits consumers if you think that coercing them to buy Windows Vista and the latest and most expensive hardware like "skulltrail" to run games and forcing more draconian copy-protection/DRM down their throats like TPM is beneficial.

 
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64. Re: No subject Feb 20, 2008, 19:15 Chain
 
zirik: Uhh yes I did but I guess you diden't?

"The alliance comes at a time when PC video game sales are falling. PC games sales in the United States 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."

Oh and before you whip out the flame, yes I realise they are lumping all consoles together vs. the PC. Even if that is the case, that still means that consoles are selling more games as a group, which will prompt developers to develop for consoles instead of PCs.

This comment was edited on Feb 20, 19:16.
 
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63. Re: PC Gaming Feb 20, 2008, 19:05 >U
 
PC gaming needs to use the hardware that consumers have rather than designing for what they want them to buy.
Amen, but...

The best thing the gaming alliance can do for PC gaming is encourage developers to stick with a common denominator that will work for the most possible users.

that's not going to happen because the whole purpose of this "alliance" is to sell new hardware. Games are what has driven the PC industry to this point. The overwhelming majority of PC users wouldn't need a Geforce 8800 and four cores if it weren't for games like Crysis forcing users to buy them. The executives at all of these hardware companies finally got their bean counters to run the numbers and realized that without PC games, there's nothing to push consumers to buy the latest one-hundred pipeline video cards and twelve core processors. Video game consoles don't get updated but every four or five years, so they can't makeup that revenue with console sales especially when the costs of the components decrease with each passing month. These hardware companies can only demand premium prices for their latest and greatest offerings if consumers are willing to buy them. And, without PC games requiring them, the overwhelming majority of consumers won't waste their money on those high-end components.

This comment was edited on Feb 20, 20:57.
 
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62. Re: No subject Feb 20, 2008, 18:21 Yosemite Sam
 
So the Alliance first move to save PC gaming is the announcement of a processor that, alone, will cost more then a console!?!

Skulltrail... 2x quadcore processors... I'm still waiting for games to be natively coded to fully utilize 2 cores.

Pretty much sums it up, games are not even using the power we have now and they are already upping the anty, friken hardware cold war, why not get the shit you already have on the market working correctly instead of pushing out new shit that doesnt work. This alliance is nothing but a bunch of bullshit, Axis would be a better term to use.
Microsoft even being on the list is an insult, I remember one of Bills big speeches when the Xbox first hit the market, his vision was that every houshold used a M$ console for all there entertainment needs, and that is the path they are on. Theres no room for PC games in that vision.

It would probably help if retailers would bring the PC games back up front instead of keeping them in "PC Software" next to MS-Word and Norton Anti-Virus on a shelf in a back corner that's completely disorganized. Target and Circuit City are the worst offenders I've seen.

Bring games to the front where they can be seen? LOL how about they stock the games period, how many times I have wanted to pick up an older game that I had passed on due to time and lo and behold I cant get it anywhere. Shit there are new games out now that I cant find in the stores. You want PC sales up, dont try to sell me new hardware, GET THE FUCKING SOFTWARE IN THE STORE!!!

meh now I'm pissed off, fucking PC gaming alliance my ass.


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61. Re: No subject Feb 20, 2008, 17:59 MattyC
 
You're totally mistaken. Counter-Strike players are some of the most die hard PC loyalists. Ask a CS player what they think about Halo or GoW.

Yes but, in my exp, those people JUST play CS. Over and over and over. I like CS and I liked DoD (before they ruined it), but just playing CAL matches of the same mod until the end of times doesn't really make you a PC gamer or loyalist imo.

 
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60. KEYBOARD & MOUSE FTW!! Feb 20, 2008, 17:49 TangledThorns
 
What would really fuck PC gaming is if M$ or Sony supported keyboard & mouse for their consoles. Whats preventing them is beyond me. If its about proprietary then make their own.

 
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59. Re: No subject Feb 20, 2008, 17:38 NKD
 
All I have to say that this is nothing but a waste of resources as it can't and WON'T amount to ANYTHING.

What a bunch of tossers.

Thanks Derek. Now your hate brigade is gonna come in here and flame you, thereby ruining the thread.

But seriously, I think you're probably right. They don't need an alliance, they need a clue.

 
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If you don't like where gaming is heading, stop giving your money to the people who are taking it in that direction.
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58. Re: No subject Feb 20, 2008, 17:32 Mashiki Amiketo
 
The last time there was a good game that I wanted to buy, last on my list was Civ4+exp's, freelancer was pretty decent. I wouldn't mind another really good space sim, kinda waiting on spore and eh? What else is there.

I'll bet that SC2 will be a huge boost however.
 
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57. Re: No subject Feb 20, 2008, 17:30 Valtyr
 
We don't need more innovation in the hardware sector right now. We need a reliable OS and games that last longer then 6 to 8 hours.

 
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