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The State of WiiWare, Xbox Alternatives

Soulskill posted more than 5 years ago | from the one-of-the-lesser-known-states dept.

Games 73

CVG is running a piece discussing the current state of WiiWare, and where they expect it to go in the future. They point to the success of Mega Man 9 on WiiWare and other platforms, but worry that the perception will arise that certain games are "too good" to be featured on WiiWare. GameSetWatch has a related interview with independent developer Ninjabee discussing their recent games and comparing WiiWare with Xbox Live Arcade. Meanwhile, Microsoft has announced that the new Xbox Experience coming in November will included their Community Games initiative, which will allow amateur game developers to create and share games using the XNA development tools.

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73 comments

Illin in the panicillin? (-1, Troll)

alfs boner (963844) | more than 5 years ago | (#25437675)

Is she illin with the panicillin? Is she reelin in the panicillin? Is it feelin with the panicillin? Are you steelin in the panacillin? Panka Panka Is she liable no suitifiable no not on trial but so suitifiable Is she viable no suitifiable pliable style is so suitifiable so reliable no suitifiable shes not on file but so suitifiable im on the dial its so suitifiable its like im liable but more suitifiable suitifiable s-suitifiable s-suitifiiable s-suiti-panka panka suiitifiable s-suitifiable s-suitifiable s-suiti- BASS! panka pannikin annikin pank pannikin anna anna annikin anna panka pannikin panka pannikin annakin pnka pannakin ana anna annikin anna panka pannikin suitifiable suitifiable s-suitifiable s-suiti-panka panka suitifiiable s-suitifiable s-suitfiable s-suiti- BASS! panka pannikin anakin panka pannikin anna anna annikin anna panka pannikin panka pannikin annakkin panka pannikin ana anna annikin anna panka pannikin panka panka babe i think in dreaming theres a party in the ceiling and you know i got this feeling that im in the panicillin you got me kneelin now im reelin in the panka panka shilling in the drilling in the room with panicllin panka panka the arch-rival, genocidal, stupifiable man is suitifiable the tribal liable lionel trains are running on time, but the lady who showed up is suitifiable

Re:Illin in the panicillin? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25437943)

Go back to school and learn how to write english.

Re:Illin in the panicillin? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25439397)

Racist. Not that I'd expect less from Slashdot trolls. Sad, really...

Don't forget Sony (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25437735)

Hey, don't forget Sony's equivalent, uh, "downloadable game." Let's see how it stacks up against those:

Has Unique Games Only Found On The Service

(X) WiiWare
(X) XBox Live Arcade
( ) Sony

Oh. I guess demos don't count, huh?

Carry on, then.

Re:Don't forget Sony (4, Informative)

DrEldarion (114072) | more than 5 years ago | (#25437889)

You mean like Pain, Calling All Cars, Flow, Warhawk, Echochrome, Everyday Shooter, the Pixeljunk games, Super Stardust HD, etc. etc. etc.?

Re:Don't forget Sony (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25439473)

No, I mean like games anyone in their right mind would want to play.

Seriously, I got to play one of the Pixeljunk games, and God damn, I can't see why anyone would want to.

The point remains that all the best stuff is on the Wii and the Xbox 360 anyway.

Re:Don't forget Sony (-1)

M-RES (653754) | more than 5 years ago | (#25439549)

...except for GT5 Prologue (and GT5 when it finally comes out). GT is, after all, the ONLY reason to own any platform. All other games are mere fillers in between GT releases! ;P

Re:Don't forget Sony (1)

Floritard (1058660) | more than 5 years ago | (#25530873)

Here, here. The PixelJunk games are honestly quite sublime. Whoever can play Eden and not get totally sucked in, I cry for your wilted inner child.

PixelJunk's next game is supposed to be a dungeon crawler, a genre of game I have traditionally cared nothing for, but since it's PixelJunk I'm actually quite intrigued.

decent but needs work (0)

chibiace (898665) | more than 5 years ago | (#25437813)

wiiware is alright. bigger games are needed so the storage must be increased, though more people will always buy games from retail stores because of the credit card and point cards limitation. not like there are any really really good games for wii.

Re:decent but needs work (2, Funny)

philspear (1142299) | more than 5 years ago | (#25438213)

not like there are any really really good games for wii.

Begs the question "what do you mean by really really good games when there's..." But I'm not going to ask it. So there, foiled your plot! :-P

Re:decent but needs work (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25439185)

Before someone else calls you on it, that's not what Begging the question means. Remember, beggings the question involves no begging and no question.

Re:decent but needs work (1)

chibiace (898665) | more than 5 years ago | (#25445113)

well some are ok. but not really really really good.

Re:decent but needs work (1)

Theoboley (1226542) | more than 5 years ago | (#25445835)

Nintendo boils down to 3 constant franchise games that nintendo rehashes every generation. 1. Mario (and all the games associated with it) 2. Metroid and 3. Zelda. Arguably 3 of the most recognized Game characters in video game history, and if you haven't heard of them, you need to get out from under your rock a bit more. They also had Castlevania, until that went multiplatform.

The DRM issue needs to be sorted out. (5, Interesting)

earthbound kid (859282) | more than 5 years ago | (#25437851)

I've used the WiiWare and Virtual Console stores, but I think Nintendo really needs to work out the DRM issue. If I want to change to a different colored Wii in a couple years, will there be any way to bring my current games with me? What if my current machine just dies for some reason? What about when the Wii 2 comes out? Will there be any way of bringing my current collection of WiiWare with me to future consoles? Yeah, you can link your Wii with a My Nintendo account, but so far as I can tell, so far that has no effect whatsoever on your ability to retrieve your games in the future...

Re:The DRM issue needs to be sorted out. (5, Insightful)

dunezone (899268) | more than 5 years ago | (#25437977)

I bet they will allow it but be prepared for a hassle. I mean look at the friend code system they have for playing games with your friends.

The best bet to see how Nintendo will do this is to find the instructions they have right now for transferring your account from a dead Wii to a replacement unit. That will give you a general idea of how some future transfer of accounts will work.

Also this is the same company that wanted me to pay $5 for Super Mario Brothers (AGAIN). Nintendo should have made this a free download when the Wii launched. So expect anything from them.

Re:The DRM issue needs to be sorted out. (1)

Lumpy (12016) | more than 5 years ago | (#25439453)

Expect this from ALL the console makers. Nintendo was simply the first out the gate with it.

All of them want to anally rape the consumer, It's all about how can we get you to re-buy that game again.

Re:The DRM issue needs to be sorted out. (1)

MikeBabcock (65886) | more than 5 years ago | (#25440215)

You mean like Sony? Who lets you re-download any purchased game content from their store on up to five PS3's on which you have an account? Sounds awful.

Re:The DRM issue needs to be sorted out. (1, Informative)

trdrstv (986999) | more than 5 years ago | (#25440767)

You mean like Sony? Who lets you re-download any purchased game content from their store on up to five PS3's on which you have an account?

Yes, The same Sony that killed the Downloadable version of Warhawk by not allowing local multiplayer if both people didn't buy the game?

If you buy the retail disc, you can take 4 people online from 1 system, on the downloadable copy each user needs to have bought the game.

Re:The DRM issue needs to be sorted out. (1)

MikeBabcock (65886) | more than 5 years ago | (#25454647)

By killing local multiplayer you mean "didn't allow multiple local accounts access to the software." Local 'multiplayer' works just fine (I play split-screen regularly with friends over).

And yes, that feature annoys me, but its also in the terms of service for the download ("can only be used by ...")

Yes, it should have been spelled out clearer, and I even sent Sony several E-mails sharing my distaste for that reality, but in my home, nobody but me plays Warhawk anyway, so it works out fine.

Re:The DRM issue needs to be sorted out. (1)

Lordnerdzrool (884216) | more than 5 years ago | (#25448543)

As far as I can tell, that's darn near the same thing as Spore on PC. Limited installs = bad. If it's my account and my software that I bought, I should have the ability to install it as many times as I wish.

Re:The DRM issue needs to be sorted out. (5, Informative)

Ringl (895323) | more than 5 years ago | (#25438007)

You don't even need to set up the my nintendo account. Anything you purchase you can delete off your system as much as you want and just go back and download it right away.

And if your system dies? When you get a new one call Nintendo's customer support, give them your old serial number and then give them your new serial number and Nintendo transfers everything you've purchased to your new console. Then everything you've purchased is available to download.

Nintendo doesn't have any DRM issue that can't also be said of the 360 or PS3.

Re:The DRM issue needs to be sorted out. (3, Insightful)

philspear (1142299) | more than 5 years ago | (#25438231)

Nintendo doesn't have any DRM issue that can't also be said of the 360 or PS3.

Of course there's the real issue. DRM is such an anathema around here that it doesn't even have to have real problems to be denounced. I get the impression that anything more than a note (http://www.penny-arcade.com/comic/2008/9/24/) would automatically get a "brokenbydesign" tag and halfhearted calls to boycott it until they learn.

Re:The DRM issue needs to be sorted out. (2, Insightful)

elrous0 (869638) | more than 5 years ago | (#25439863)

The REAL problem with DRM is something common to WiiWware, 360 arcade, the PSN store, and virtually everything else DRM touches, namely:

What happens when the parent company gets tired of supporting it? What happens when they no longer answer the phone when you call them to transfer your account to a new console (or, alternatively, they answer and tell you "Sorry, we're no longer supporting that console model/DRM scheme")? What happens when they shutdown their old DRM servers (like Walmart threatened to do [slashdot.org] recently).

I'll tell you what happens. You kiss your "owned" music/games/movies goodbye. THAT'S the problem with DRM. Unlike with physical media, you never really OWN your media. All you've bought is an extended rental, whose rental period could end at any time.

Re:The DRM issue needs to be sorted out. (-1, Troll)

not already in use (972294) | more than 5 years ago | (#25440033)

What happens when the parent company gets tired of supporting it? What happens when they no longer answer the phone when you call them to transfer your account to a new console? What happens when they shutdown their old DRM servers.

Ohh, hypothetical arguments! I want to play!

What happens when Nintendo reveals their plot to take over the US by remote detonating every Wii sold within our borders? What happens when Sony subconsciously converts us all to Islam by including Quran references in hit titles? What happens when you catch the red ring of death from your 360, a terrible sexually transmitted disease?
You die. You die and go to hell. THAT'S what happens.

Re:The DRM issue needs to be sorted out. (1)

mj_sklar (888539) | more than 5 years ago | (#25439069)

And if your system dies? When you get a new one call Nintendo's customer support, give them your old serial number and then give them your new serial number and Nintendo transfers everything you've purchased to your new console.

Not quite. My Wii died recently, and when I called Nintendo, they said you have to send the system in for repairs, otherwise they won't transfer any data.

Re:The DRM issue needs to be sorted out. (1)

gEvil (beta) (945888) | more than 5 years ago | (#25440647)

I believe that's to transfer your user accounts, Miis, and any save data that can't easily be moved.

Re:The DRM issue needs to be sorted out. (1)

Chokolad (35911) | more than 5 years ago | (#25443125)

> And if your system dies? When you get a new one call Nintendo's customer support, give them your old serial number and then give them your new serial number and Nintendo transfers everything you've purchased to your new console. Then everything you've purchased is available to download.

And this is better than Xbox 360 how ?

Re:The DRM issue needs to be sorted out. (1)

ndb82 (736898) | more than 5 years ago | (#25446369)

And this is better than Xbox 360 how ?

And he said it was better than Xbox 360 where ?

You still get your WiiWare/VC games after repair (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25438041)

I had my Wii repaired because of a problem with it overheating and displaying black boxes from time to time. [youtube.com] (The repair was free, btw, and I recommend it if you are having the same problem.)

Essentially they copied all my data over to another Wii and sent that Wii back. So from a DRM-standpoint, it's like getting a new Wii. From what I recall, my WiiWare and VC games stayed on there just fine.

The only downside I noticed was I can no longer edit the Miis that were on there before because they don't allow you to edit them on someone else's system.

DAMN YOU NINTENDO, GET RID OF YOUR OVERLY RESTRICTIVE Mii DRM!!!!!

Re:You still get your WiiWare/VC games after repai (2, Interesting)

Daetrin (576516) | more than 5 years ago | (#25439841)

Did you have a Super Smash Bros save on the original Wii? I've heard that several games, SSBB among them, have copy protected save files that only work on the original console (similar to the Mii files you're having trouble with.) Though i'm not sure what it is they're supposed to protected _from_ =P

Re:You still get your WiiWare/VC games after repai (2, Informative)

xenocide2 (231786) | more than 5 years ago | (#25443715)

A savegame is one of the paths to breaking the data / code barrier and running untrusted code. This has two implications: piracy and viruses. We've already seen how easy it was to run untrusted code via a simple savegame. Transfer the save from the Wii to the SD card, load up the save in a hex editor and start looking for meaning. Name strings, for example. If you rewrite the save to use an overly long name, maybe it notices and nothing happens. But maybe they forgot to check the horse's name. All you need is one weak path, and now you can run homebrew emulators that compete with Virtual Console games (you can also run Linux, but there's little point without wifi). You might also be able to

There's another problem however, that affects more than Nintendo's bottom line. Malicious virii. If there was a problem with game names, it could potentially wreck a chain of players. I imagine a game like Brawl does peer to peer multiplayer to reduce latency and bottlenecks, so you can't filter out bad packets. And you can't shut down online play without fiasco. So encrypting the save at least obscures where data that might be transferred over the net is stored.

Re:You still get your WiiWare/VC games after repai (1)

Lost Engineer (459920) | more than 5 years ago | (#25447057)

There are a couple of easy solutions to the problem you're talking about that don't involve preventing people from sharing saved games. Most obvious is to just insist that there aren't those sorts of bugs in savegame code. That's a bit impractical, though. You could, however, provide a common save game API that eliminates common errors.

Microsoft uses a combination of code signing, a hypervisor, and hardware security features like the NX bit to make running unauthorized code extremely difficult. That's probably the way to go these days.

Re:You still get your WiiWare/VC games after repai (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25448893)

Did you have a Super Smash Bros save on the original Wii? I've heard that several games, SSBB among them, have copy protected save files that only work on the original console (similar to the Mii files you're having trouble with.) Though i'm not sure what it is they're supposed to protected _from_ =P

Well...there are ways to copy those through the magic of homebrew (GeckoOS' rebooter function) if you want to back them up/transfer them to a new console. IIRC, the reason they are locked is because of the online play in those games (two systems with the same friend code would not work).

Re:The DRM issue needs to be sorted out. (0)

M-RES (653754) | more than 5 years ago | (#25439569)

What about when the Wii 2 comes out?

Wii is so-called, because it's Number One. Number Two will actually be rightly called Puu heh ;D

Re:The DRM issue needs to be sorted out. (1)

morari (1080535) | more than 5 years ago | (#25444469)

What?! I thought that the next Nintendo console would be the wII. Haha... Roman numerals!

The Real Problem... (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25437931)

The real problem IS NOT the perception that a game is "too good" for WiiWare. Hell, give me ALL titles available as WiiWare. It works for my PSP and PS3.

The real problem is that there is no fucking space to store the games. Four pages of 16 channels and your only hope of filling them all is to buy nothing but NES games.

Let us play off flash like the PSP. Or give us an external hard drive.

I'd be more than happy to shell out $50 for Resident Evil 5 as WiiWare. I just have no place to store it.

Re:The Real Problem... (2, Informative)

Karma Sink (229208) | more than 5 years ago | (#25438137)

SD cards aren't very expensive. I only have a 2GB card in my Wii and there's still plenty of room for me to download games. Mind you, I tend toward NES and SNES games more often for download, but it's still a lot of space.

Re:The Real Problem... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25438263)

Except, you can't play the games off your SD card. And compared to games downloaded on other systems, there is not really a lot of space.

Re:The Real Problem... (1)

MikeBabcock (65886) | more than 5 years ago | (#25440233)

I hear that -- but some people don't realize you can purchase 4GB+ games from the Sony Playstation Store, for example (Burnout Paradise). Warhawk isn't small either (and completely downloadable).

"Only" 2GB (2, Interesting)

Rurik (113882) | more than 5 years ago | (#25439525)

That's beating around the issue that the maximum SD card that the Wii accepts is 2GB. It doesn't support SDHC, which greatly limits its storage which, IMO, is a huge fault of the Wii. For a full life cycle, 2GB will not be enough for many users. There are already people who are hitting that ceiling, especially those that do not have regular Internet access, and thus can't afford the luxury of just deleting games to redownload later.

I've hit 2GB, however I have a lot of homebrew apps.

Re:"Only" 2GB (1)

Monsuco (998964) | more than 5 years ago | (#25444147)

I've hit 2GB, however I have a lot of homebrew apps.

You could just spend the $12 and buy another 2 GB SD card. How big of a ceiling is that? SD is cheap.

Re:"Only" 2GB (1)

Rurik (113882) | more than 5 years ago | (#25444803)

Right, and we could still be using 1.4MB floppies, as most daily documents can fit on there. We don't for the same issue as here. I don't want to lug around a dozen SD cards, even if they are cheap. I want a single card to stay in the Wii, so that there's less a chance of it becoming lost or damaged.

Re:"Only" 2GB (1)

trdrstv (986999) | more than 5 years ago | (#25444819)

HCSD Cards use the same pins as SD cards, so it is possible to support larger cards with a firmware update.

XNA Community Games (2, Interesting)

neokushan (932374) | more than 5 years ago | (#25438199)

I'm more curious as to how the /. community feels about Microsoft's community games. I, personally, think it's a brilliant idea and hopefully it'll bring back the days of the "bedroom-made game". I'm a little worried that many quality (and more to the point, original) games will get overshadowed by the fad-of-the-month sort of thing, but the system seems to be working well enough for music and youtube, so I think we'll be all right. Plus it's still a lot better than what you currently have - publish and distribute it yourself, on your own site, at your own costs, etc.

I look forward to seeing some really awesome stuff over the coming months (And hopefully years).

MS Desperately Needs Content To Pad Out Lineup (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25438405)

If you look at the complete mess Microsoft's first party lineup of developers it should be perfect obvious why Microsoft is making this move.

Sony has roughly 20 first party development studios + additional exclusive third party developers and exclusive PSN developers

Nintendo has about 10 first party development studios.

And Microsoft only has about 3-4. They've closed more studios over the past few years than they have total now.

That is the main reason Microsoft has had virtually nothing new to show for the past year or so at gaming shows. Other than the usual exclusive and mostly irrelevant exclusive PC ports the Xbox gets there just aren't enough developers making exclusive Xbox content for Microsoft.

Microsoft is really screwed in the console market. They have racked up almost similar losses to the first Xbox mess even though the Xbox team was given strict guidelines that the first XBox type losses would not be tollerated again. Shane Kim made it clear that pulling the plug on the 360 isn't an option like they did with the first Xbox. So Microsoft is in a position where they have a console that is content starved with another couple years on the market.

This is nothing more than a desperation move by Microsoft. The entire console business is based on making it worthwhile to game developers to support your platform because you filter out the mass of garbage that you get when everyone can dump crap onto the platform.

 

Re:MS Desperately Needs Content To Pad Out Lineup (2, Interesting)

neokushan (932374) | more than 5 years ago | (#25439025)

I think you're a little bit misinformed there, or slightly biased (but then aren't we all?).

Yes, Microsoft doesn't have half as many first-party developers as Sony or Nintendo, but I wouldn't say they've had "nothing" to show for the past year, there's still way more 360 exclusives than PS3 exclusives (But Nintendo has the runaway total of those because so many developers are happy to port crap games to the Wii to make a quick buck).
What "mostly irrelevant PC ports" are you referring to, exactly? The myth of the Xbox 360 being little more than a PC is exactly that - a myth (the original Xbox definitely was, though), but it's no surprise that both platforms tend to go hand-in-hand when Microsoft supplies pretty much all the development tools for both. But I digress, I'm not sure what ports you're referring to, unless you count a few Arcade games.

As for being content starved and desperate, I really can't say anything to that because it's just so utterly, utterly wrong. The PS3 is way more content starved than the 360, the 360 has hundreds, possibly thousands of titles on it right now, way more than the PS3 and I've yet to see any kind of NPD data or similar that indicates that the 360 isn't the most profitable system of them all (For developers, that is). The RROD $1billion certainly ate into Microsoft's profits quite a bit, but the amount of money they're raking in through console, software and peripheral sales is staggering. What's more, aside from the Wii (Can you count it as a "current-gen" console? That's a debate for another time), it's selling stupendously well right now and absolutely out-pacing Sony in all markets - Even Japan.
Yeah sure, Microsoft has a lot of ground to make up still, but they're currently in an extremely strong position (Stronger than Sony and that's saying something) and nothing seems desperate at all. One thing Microsoft is good at, though, is making money and I think with this XNA lark, they've noticed quite a large amount of potential market for indie games and this is an excellent way for them to get a piece of that pie.

Re:MS Desperately Needs Content To Pad Out Lineup (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25441657)

It's worth mentioning at this point that Sony is losing exclusives at what must be an alarming rate to their execs.

Final Fantasy XIII has already jumped ship, and the only exclusive they have this holiday season is the delayed LittleBigPlanet. And "October" isn't quite "holiday season" but hey, if they keep on delaying it, they might actually hit Christmas.

How bad is it?

Konami is talking about porting Metal Gear Solid 4 to the Xbox 360. Nothing final yet, but apparently even with it being the game to get for the PS3, they weren't able to recover development costs.

Re:MS Desperately Needs Content To Pad Out Lineup (1)

Theoboley (1226542) | more than 5 years ago | (#25446627)

Um... LBP hits stores next Tuesday, Don't Know if you got that memo or not...

Re:MS Desperately Needs Content To Pad Out Lineup (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25447117)

In fact I did, which is why I mentioned it being released in October.

I also got the memos about it being released tomorrow (Oct. 21st) AND the one about the amazingly lame excuse for it to be delayed. It's not like PSN can't force patches, and it's certainly not like there's any point to playing LBP offline.

I'm wondering what this week's excuse for delaying the release will be?

Re:MS Desperately Needs Content To Pad Out Lineup (1)

Theoboley (1226542) | more than 5 years ago | (#25453025)

Truth... Never thought about the PSN patching it... I Now agree with you... IDIOTS!!!!!

Re:MS Desperately Needs Content To Pad Out Lineup (1)

Walpurgiss (723989) | more than 5 years ago | (#25453475)

But if they just release the discs with the two sentences from the Koran, and just patch the songs out, they'll have to worry about being hot coffeed/manhunted..

That's probably why they want to restamp all the discs. Sad really.

Re:MS Desperately Needs Content To Pad Out Lineup (1)

Theoboley (1226542) | more than 5 years ago | (#25460653)

If someone wants to listen to the song that bad, they'd YARGH!!! the song via limewire or a torrent website... I know that I wouldn't go to all the trouble of hacking a video game just for two lines of a song...

Re:MS Desperately Needs Content To Pad Out Lineup (1)

bevoblake (1106117) | more than 5 years ago | (#25445649)

Your statement that the 360 is outselling the PS3 is wrong. For almost the 2008 calendar year, the PS3 has outsold or tied the 360. [vgchartz.com] That said, cumulative sales of the 360 are way ahead of the PS3.

Another interesting aspect of all of this is that current middleware products don't port as well to the PS3 (in general) as to the 360/PC. A friend of mine at Id claims that their upcoming middleware will close that gap - I'd love to see simultaneous releases on all 3 platforms.

Re:MS Desperately Needs Content To Pad Out Lineup (1)

neokushan (932374) | more than 5 years ago | (#25450107)

Yeah for most of 2008 the PS3 outsold the 360, but for most of 2007 it was the other way around and right now, right as the holiday season kicks off, the 360 is outselling once again - even in Japan.
If it's outselling Sony in Japan, you KNOW something is horribly wrong...or horribly right, depending on your perspective and since Sony isn't likely to have a price cut any time soon, it looks like this is how things are going to be until 2009 at the earliest.
Plus, as you already pointed out, the 360 has the larger install base (by a good margin) and even at the rate Sony was outselling the 360, it would have still taken them several years to overtake the 360.
I think Sony needs to triple the amount of PS3's being sold in order to "beat" the 360 at this rate.
But still, I'm glad of all this, this has been the most competitive generation yet and we've all benefited from it.

Re:XNA Community Games (1)

sshuber (1274006) | more than 5 years ago | (#25438907)

Well it's $99 to a year to join the "Developer's Club" and they offer you 70% of the profit. I'm sure a lot of people might have some incentive to jump on the bandwagon at that price point. I'm personally 100% for this since fantastic games like Age of Booty and Castle Crashers were made by small developers, but having to pay for "community" work doesn't sound so "community" to me. If the game is good enough to be published, then make people pay for it, otherwise, distribute it for free.

Re:XNA Community Games (1)

elrous0 (869638) | more than 5 years ago | (#25439919)

The main problem with XNA games is that you HAVE to charge for them. There is no option to make them available for free. This was, in part, a pragmatic decision for MS (to keep their servers from being overwhelmed by free stuff and to make money, of course). But it only highlights once again how far the console has to go before it ever offers anywhere near the value and freedom of a PC.

Re:XNA Community Games (1)

neokushan (932374) | more than 5 years ago | (#25439995)

I don't think Microsoft wants to try to replace the PC, per se, (after all, it's where they make most of their money), I think they're still pining for that long saught after dream of a PC in every living room.
They've been trying for years to do it and all the fancy designs and "media centre" brandings in the world didn't help, but somewhere along the line someone noticed that Games Consoles were rapidly appearing in people's living room's and thus the Xbox was born. I'm nearly certain the Xbox started off as little more than a trojan to get PC's into the living room, but then someone realised there was quite a lot of money to be made from games, so the 360 was born - a genuine games console with support for PC stuff like this. Anyway, I've digressed far enough, what I'm trying to say is I believe this is another way for Microsoft to bring the PC into the Living room - while taking a cut along the way.

I didn't know you HAD to charge for games, though, that is indeed a bit of a pisser, but I suppose it does stop a million people remaking pong.

Re:XNA Community Games (1)

trdrstv (986999) | more than 5 years ago | (#25444763)

The main problem with XNA games is that you HAVE to charge for them. There is no option to make them available for free.

You realize Xbox market place is a store right? "Free" is the exception, and not the rule. I'm sure iTunes or your corner supermarket have similar requirements to use their space.

Re:XNA Community Games (1)

elrous0 (869638) | more than 5 years ago | (#25445295)

Actually, iTunes doesn't. A lot of podcasters have their podcasts on iTunes for free, for example.

And my local grocery store doesn't just let random outsiders come in and drop off stuff for sale, period. The store (or parent company) buys all the products directly from chosen vendors and then resells them in the store. The XNA community model would be more analogous to a farmer coop or a farmer's market. And as long as you pay your rent for a stall at such a market (much like the XNA creator's club yearly fee), they don't care what you charge for your wares (or if you even charge at all).

Amateurs are the key (1)

Secret Rabbit (914973) | more than 5 years ago | (#25438233)

"""
Meanwhile, Microsoft has announced that the new Xbox Experience coming in November will included their Community Games initiative, which will allow amateur game developers to create and share games using the XNA development tools.
"""

This is the way to go. I mean, we know that Sony has release a couple API/dev tools/etc to University students. But, that really doesn't go far enough. Especially, when we consider that many of the people who get into the games industry aren't looking to go that way until it's "too late" to learn all the tools. When it comes to others using Sony's tools, there is a thousands of $'s fee and even then, you have to apply (including company and project information?!?!?) and could get rejected. Similarly for the Wiiware.

Making the tools available for free (for non-commercial use) will allow people to get a grip on what they'll be using in the industry (or something similar) should they decide to go that way. And at a very low entry cost as well.

I've always found it staggering at companies that don't distribute these tools. I mean, modding tools being released for games is assumed today (and if they don't its looked down upon). And those engines are where some real money is made. I really wish that the people making the consoles would loosen there death grip on the licensing just a little bit to allow the amateur game developer to give it a go. After all, what amateur game could really compete with a AAA title?

So, here's my suggestion to Sony and Nintendo. Release a "lite" version of your tools for download (Window/Mac). Then modify your console so that it can run this compiled code at least over a local network (or a downloadable title that does the same). That way, the normal console could become a "debug station" and a way to play it.

I'll bet you anything, that this would put the spotlight on some developers that wouldn't have otherwise had a chance. And them being successful, means that they'll either be giving you money for licensing to make more games, or joining a company and making them stronger for doing the same.

See, it'll benefit your bottom line.

Re:Amateurs are the key (2, Informative)

CronoCloud (590650) | more than 5 years ago | (#25438605)

You're forgetting the PS3 has the ability to run Linux, so there's your hobbyist dev station right there, at least for 2D games.

Re:Amateurs are the key (1)

Bert64 (520050) | more than 5 years ago | (#25438757)

But the mass market does not want 2d games, they want 3d, even when it ruins the game... Just look at Lemmings 3D!

Re:Amateurs are the key (2, Insightful)

tepples (727027) | more than 5 years ago | (#25439103)

But the mass market does not want 2d games, they want 3d

Then why did Capcom make Mega Man 9 and not just release its N64 port of Mega Man Legends on Virtual Console?

Re:Amateurs are the key (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25445259)

Then why did Capcom make Mega Man 9 and not just release its N64 port of Mega Man Legends on Virtual Console?

Because they're going to re-release it with added Wii remote controls and minigames for $49.99

Re:Amateurs are the key (1)

MikeBabcock (65886) | more than 5 years ago | (#25440269)

Except that Lemmings is essentially a 2D game on the PS3 :-)

Actually, the PS3 has some very cool 2D games, including Locoroco and Eden, and I'm glad they're not afraid to publish them.

Re:Amateurs are the key (1)

neonfrog (442362) | more than 5 years ago | (#25442245)

I purchased World of Goo [wikipedia.org] (by 2D Boy) this past weekend and it rocks. Nothing wrong with 2D games (many flash games are) if they are playable.

Simple understandable games (like Goo) are often better in 3D and more instantly accessible. Limiting the required axes gets you to the game faster. Not having wacky 3D cams whipsawing your perspective around is nice, too. Party games are mostly 2D. Even Wii Sports is mostly 2D, really. I think that would be considered mass market and successful, wouldn't you?

Re:Amateurs are the key (1)

manekineko2 (1052430) | more than 5 years ago | (#25445221)

Except that the PS3 Linux locks you out from the graphics system, such that no one is really looking at it seriously as a hobbyist dev station. Why would you develop for a crippled PS3 Linux when you can just develop on uncrippled PC Linux?

Re:Amateurs are the key (1)

Secret Rabbit (914973) | more than 5 years ago | (#25449885)

PS3 Linux is a toy and isn't there for serious development. There are still some major hurtles for PS3 Linux to get over for this to be a viable venture. Hell, you even mention that it only has a 2D framebuffer. Another one is getting proper Sixaxis support. So, it certainly is not for the hobbyist developer. Only the hobbyist developer that likes to make retro games. Not to mention the fact that libspe, etc are all LGPL. So, you also have to be willing to accept that license for your game.

Sorry, but still not even close to "prime time." Not even worth a mention.

Doritos dash of destruction (1)

philspear (1142299) | more than 5 years ago | (#25438247)

F1TFA

It's been almost a year since Doritos Dash of Destruction was announced for Xbox Live Arcade through the Doritos Unlock Xbox Competition, where a competition winner got to have his game created for XBLA. Where is it currently?

Answer: is there ANYONE who cares?

What is this gamesetwatch anyway? A covert marketer for doritos? A look at the "yaris" game will tell you, games that are really just commercials are less fun than watching a non-interactive TV commercial. Granted, I'm not "out on the street" where the youngsters talk about the next game they want (gives me chills just thinking about the level of dialogue that must go on on that street) or in a videogame store, but I feel it's safe to say that the people who are looking forward to this game being released are all executives working at Doritos.

WiiWare? Sounds like... (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25439235)

...a brand of adult diaper.

Still waiting for (1)

Monsuco (998964) | more than 5 years ago | (#25444201)

Earthbound on Virtual Console. This game has consistently won on polls of what game people want for VC (oddly, the prequal Earth Bound Zero often polls 3rd or 4th, even though it never saw a US release). I WANT MY GAME /rant.

Re:Still waiting for (1)

captjc (453680) | more than 5 years ago | (#25448561)

Amen that.

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