Beta

×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

Microsoft Demos Three Platforms Running the Same Game

Soulskill posted more than 4 years ago | from the pick-up-and-play dept.

196

suraj.sun writes with this excerpt from Engadget: "Microsoft's Eric Rudder, speaking at TechEd Middle East, showed off a game developed in Visual Studio as a singular project (with 90% shared code) that plays on Windows with a keyboard, a Windows Phone 7 Series prototype device with accelerometer and touch controls, and the Xbox 360 with the Xbox gamepad. Interestingly, not only is the development cross-platform friendly, but the game itself (a simple Indiana Jones platformer was demoed) saves its place and lets you resume from that spot on whichever platform you happen to pick up."

cancel ×

196 comments

Sorry! There are no comments related to the filter you selected.

AWESOME! (1)

blai (1380673) | more than 4 years ago | (#31391408)

Though he also said the games use the same texture data.
How much space, then, will a typical cross-platform game take up on my phone?

Re:AWESOME! (1)

recoiledsnake (879048) | more than 4 years ago | (#31391978)

They have low res and high res versions of the content as can be seen in the Visual Studio solution in the video. The phone will use the low res content only.

Cross platform - maybe not so awesome (1)

perpenso (1613749) | more than 4 years ago | (#31392414)

I'm sure cross platform (as in computer/console/handheld) can work well for some games but for many games I expect it will not be awesome. There is an inherent imbalance between the platforms, for example input devices. In games where precise control offers an advantage, say a shooter, a player with a mouse may have an advantage overs someone with a controller. Can the game be designed to level the playing field by introducing automatic assistance in aiming , yes, but that limits a players ability to prevail with better skills. Balancing some cross platform games may require too many compromises to make it fair across platforms.

--
Perpenso Calc [perpenso.com] for iPhone and iPod touch, scientific and bill/tip calculator, fractions, complex numbers, RPN

Re:Cross platform - maybe not so awesome (1)

ToasterMonkey (467067) | more than 4 years ago | (#31392676)

In games where precise control offers an advantage, say a shooter, a player with a mouse may have an advantage overs someone with a controller. Can the game be designed to level the playing field by introducing automatic assistance in aiming , yes, but that limits a players ability to prevail with better skills

Rifles in the real world are much less accurate than a mouse. I'm a little tired of hyper accurate mouse targeting "skills" being the centerpiece of shooter mechanics. How about some more strategy? Console games have been branching out with soldiers, planes, trucks and tanks, all of which adapt well to gamepads. Even games with 100% auto-aim can work, look at Warhawk. How can you even say "skill" when everyone has different machines running at different frame rates with different mice, and differing network latencies?

Sorry to everyone who thinks they have mad mouse "skills", but hitting a moving target at a distance _should_ be hard, and increasing movement speed to compensate for hyper accurate aim is f*cking retarded. Yah, those games are fun, but please don't say it's a level playing field, it's not, it's incredibly elitist.

  Also, two men with rifles at melee distance should either result in a very short gunfight or a brawl if they are both out of ammo; not a prolonged gunfight. *sigh* starts making own game...

Balancing some cross platform games may require too many compromises to make it fair across platforms.

I agree.
Same game with three wildly different input devices is going to suck badly at two of them regardless of mouse/kb/touch/gamepad etc.

Re:Cross platform - maybe not so awesome (2, Informative)

mobby_6kl (668092) | more than 4 years ago | (#31393132)

Rifles in the real world are more accurate than they are made to be in the games. For instance, IRL it's possible to hit a person-sized target at 300 meters with a simple M-16, while in a game, you'd be happy to do that at 100m, and might even need some optics to pull that off. So yeah, it's already hard to hit a moving target a at a long distance, there's no need to also have to fight an inferior input device while doing this.

Also, in any "realistic" game like Rainbow Six or SWAT two people bumping into each other at close range will almost instantly result in at least one corpse, not a prolonged gunfight. I'm sorry if that's not something your console allows you to experience, it's great fun and leads to very tense and exciting matches :D

Re:Cross platform - maybe not so awesome (1)

NouberNou (1105915) | more than 4 years ago | (#31393184)

ArmA2 + ACE2 mod. Doesn't get much more real than that with out signing your name someplace.

Re:Cross platform - maybe not so awesome (3, Interesting)

pcolaman (1208838) | more than 4 years ago | (#31393340)

There are a good number of people I know (including a few riflemen in the Marine Corps) who would most definitely disagree with your first statement. It's more of a matter of the ability of the shooter, not the accuracy of the rifle. The US Military has some highly accurate rifles, when put in the hands of the right shooter.

90% shared code? (0)

YesIAmAScript (886271) | more than 4 years ago | (#31391412)

How about 100%?

Have you never played a Flash game online? It uses the same code on all platforms and it picks up where you left off even if you switch platforms.

What's the big deal?

Re:90% shared code? (2, Insightful)

inputdev (1252080) | more than 4 years ago | (#31391470)

I agree, There is nothing special about running with or without a game controller. It sounds like the only thing "new" here is Windows Phone 7 Series. So they got the game to compile for the phone? Whoohoo! Good for them, I never imagined it to be possible.

Only player 1 (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 4 years ago | (#31392596)

I agree, There is nothing special about running with or without a game controller.

Other than that it's the only choice for players 2, 3, and 4. Only player 1 can use a keyboard and mouse.

Re:90% shared code? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31391528)

Imagine if the browsers were the same across the platforms.

Re:90% shared code? (2, Interesting)

sourcerror (1718066) | more than 4 years ago | (#31391548)

Actions script is a dynamic interpreted, and it significantly limits its performance. Writing cross platform c++ code is significantly harder.* (Although, if you use a compilers by the same vendor it makes things easier.)
I guess this demo was about to showcase their cross-platform gaming libraries. I guess 10% non-shared parts were responsible for the different user-interface controls.

* I guess it's more likely some c++ libraries with .net bindings.

Re:90% shared code? (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31391802)

C# and XNA. Not C++.

Re:90% shared code? (2, Interesting)

gbjbaanb (229885) | more than 4 years ago | (#31392624)

Nothing is going to be native C++ on Windows anymore. Microsoft is only interested in using .NET, probably C#, for *everything*.

Its their new lock-in. Developers write in C# and find their code only works on Microsoft platforms. Then they look at their developer tools and features MS has packed in there and think "I don't know/not interested in writing code that works on alternative platforms", as Ballmer grins and rubs his hands together.

I know the 'real' game studios all use C++, so I understand where you're coming from, but this is MS. This is their new strategy for even more dominance.

Re:90% shared code? (1, Insightful)

chentiangemalc (1710624) | more than 4 years ago | (#31393304)

It is not just 'Microsoft' that is interested in using C#, it is developers. It singificantly reduces development time, much less code to manage, and much more difficult to introduce buggy code then using C/C++. I don't know where you get the idea only 'real' game studios use all C++. Many 'real' game studios also use C# In addition on other platforms you can use C# with the mono framework, so it is not locked into Microsoft.

Re:90% shared code? (1)

larry bagina (561269) | more than 4 years ago | (#31393322)

action script runs on the tamarin [wikipedia.org] VM and is JIT compiled (that's why adobe is taking so long to go 64-bit flash).

Re:90% shared code? (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31391810)

Have you ever played a Flash game with a joystick or a gamepad? On any machine without a keyboard or mouse? How about a Flash game that makes use of 3D hardware?

Yeah, that's what I thought.

dom

Re:90% shared code? (2, Insightful)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 4 years ago | (#31391866)

Flash is the platform. It's not a particularly efficient one on Windows, let alone any of the places where an inferior knockoff is provided. You can get halfway decent performance on OSX (from what I hear) and you get almost that good of an experience with Linux on x86_64... Or in other words, ugh.

Re:90% shared code? (1)

M8e (1008767) | more than 4 years ago | (#31392974)

It is possible to play flash games with gamepads if you use joystick 2 mouse or similar program, and some computers don't have keyboards(car-pc, tablets, htpc etc). So yes, yes and no for me.

But that is not really cross-platform as those where pc's and all where running windows, mod me offtopic for that. But it is possible to remap keys and flash exists on more than one platform("PC", mac, some smart phones and other portible devices) so it is possible to run some flash games on a number of different machines.

90% shared code? so what? (-1, Troll)

ardiri (245358) | more than 4 years ago | (#31391432)

i've been writing code across many platforms with 100% code reuse - more importantly, not using a runtime - all my applications are native. just write a few basic entry points; put the platform specific points in a library and then all your applications link against this. you then end up with native binaries for each platform - just distribute. this is not news - most developers have been able to do this for years (including myself). i can build applications for windows, linux, macosx, iphone, windows mobile, symbian series 60/uiq, palmos, moblin, maemo et al by doing this and i've been doing it since 2003.

Re:90% shared code? so what? (3, Informative)

Karlt1 (231423) | more than 4 years ago | (#31391584)

i've been writing code across many platforms with 100% code reuse - more importantly, not using a runtime - all my applications are native. just write a few basic entry points; put the platform specific points in a library and then all your applications link against this. you then end up with native binaries for each platform - just distribute. this is not news - most developers have been able to do this for years (including myself). i can build applications for windows, linux, macosx, iphone, windows mobile, symbian series 60/uiq, palmos, moblin, maemo et al by doing this and i've been doing it since 2003.

Let's see where to start....

1. If you are writing different libraries for each platform -- that's not 100% code re-use
2. You're not "just distributing" the same binary for each platform.
3. What are you using for graphics, sounds, storage, etc. on each platform?
4. You're doing this without a bunch of #ifdef's?
5. How are you accounting for different screen resolutions, graphics hardware, touch capabilities, and other hardware difference?

I've never programmed games for either the PC or mobile but I do write boring old business apps for Windows Mobile industrial devices. I'm able to target Windows Mobile and take the same app and run it flawlessly on the desktop -- without a recompile.

Re:90% shared code? so what? (0, Troll)

BitZtream (692029) | more than 4 years ago | (#31392438)

Depending on what you're doing, most if not all can be accomplished with OpenGL and GLUT.

I most certainly have the source to a pong clone that will compile on OSX, Linux, FreeBSD, and Windows out of the box. Not even an ifdef.

Of course, EVERYONE uses 'frameworks' unless they are writing raw assembly and not using any linker libraries.

From my standpoint, there is no platform specific code, unless you count the command line required to start the build (its simple, single source file, didn't even bother with a makefile)

Screen resolutions are irrelevant to me, it just scales, if you were to put it on an iPhone, you'd need good vision, but thats easy enough to remedy without special treatment for the iPhone if you choose to give up things on desktop PCs.

Graphics hardware and input differences are taken into account by using OpenGL and GLUT. Note, these are native on OSX, OpenGL is native in windows, GLUT not so much, of course neither are native in FBSD or Linux, but again, everyone uses frameworks of some sort. So MS calls them Frameworks and I call them shared library, while technically different they are for practical purposes the same thing.

I'm able to target Windows Mobile and take the same app and run it flawlessly on the desktop -- without a recompile.

Most certainly wrong, you are not able to do so. You may move the binary and run it, but it most certainly IS being recompiled. Thats part of what the Common Language Runtime does, unfortunately you're confusing MS marketing with reality, this leads me to believe you know even less about development than you realize. I could actually do the exact same thing as you are doing with C# source code and a wrapper to kickstart the process. It'd have to be a .NET wrapper since getting a batch file to run on WinMo isn't something you can do out of the box.

From my perspective, I've dealt with #1, 3, 4 and 5. I can do #2 with a java wrapper probably if I thought it mattered, but it really doesn't, its just not that big of a deal right now. It'd be nice to move across platforms without anything special, but currently it would be retarded. Games (and 'business apps' typically have different resource requirements for diffferent platforms like this. Its retarded to include 3 gigs of ultrahigh resolution textures, lightmaps and models when publishing to a mobile device. When one texture has about 12 times the resolution of the screen, its rather pointless. You're going to distribute multiple packages anyway so your PC users can have their 3 gigs of high res textures and you're going to distribute one for your WinMo users that have 5 megs of textures and models that are more than high enough resolution for display on your 320x240 postage stamp screen. Effectively making the quest for #2 fucking retarded.

My point is that really, none of this shit matters to anyone serious.

This shit from Microsoft is entirely to get crappy incapable programmers using MS dev tools to produce more things that businesses are tied into using MS platforms for. We can sit around and debate it, but the only people who think this is different are those that don't understand development in general, and those are EXACTLY the people MS wants to hit with this sort of thing.

I'm sorry, what was the point?

The second paddle (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 4 years ago | (#31392674)

I most certainly have the source to a pong clone [for OpenGL and GLUT] that will compile on OSX, Linux, FreeBSD, and Windows out of the box. Not even an ifdef.

What controls are used for the second paddle in this Pong clone? If a gamepad, then since when does GLUT support gamepads? If another computer, then since when does the same networking code work without modification (not even WSAStartup()) on Windows?

Re:90% shared code? so what? (1)

Karlt1 (231423) | more than 4 years ago | (#31393168)

Depending on what you're doing, most if not all can be accomplished with OpenGL and GLUT.

And you said you could target Palm. Palm just released a native SDK for the WebOS a few days ago. OpenGL is not public yet for the Palm Pre and doesn't work on most Windows Mobile devices -- especially not the industrial ruggedized devices. Exactly how many of those platforms that you bragged about above have you actually programmed for?

I most certainly have the source to a pong clone that will compile on OSX, Linux, FreeBSD, and Windows out of the box. Not even an ifdef.

So how well did the Pong clone work on the iPhone? the Palm Pre? Windows Mobile?

Of course, EVERYONE uses 'frameworks' unless they are writing raw assembly and not using any linker libraries.

Yes everyone does use frameworks -- but none of those frameworks are as seamless or cross platform as you imply.

From my standpoint, there is no platform specific code, unless you count the command line required to start the build (its simple, single source file, didn't even bother with a makefile)

So how do you handle the difference between the touch screen interface of the iPhone/iPod Touch and non touch screen devices?

Screen resolutions are irrelevant to me, it just scales, if you were to put it on an iPhone, you'd need good vision, but thats easy enough to remedy without special treatment for the iPhone if you choose to give up things on desktop PCs.

And you have a poorly thought out app that no one would want...

Graphics hardware and input differences are taken into account by using OpenGL and GLUT. Note, these are native on OSX, OpenGL is native in windows, GLUT not so much, of course neither are native in FBSD or Linux, but again, everyone uses frameworks of some sort. So MS calls them Frameworks and I call them shared library, while technically different they are for practical purposes the same thing.

And you're still not taking into account text entry, hardware that doesn't support OpenGL, etc. Have you actually written any software for the iPhone or Windows Mobile?

Most certainly wrong, you are not able to do so. You may move the binary and run it, but it most certainly IS being recompiled. Thats part of what the Common Language Runtime does, unfortunately you're confusing MS marketing with reality, this leads me to believe you know even less about development than you realize. I could actually do the exact same thing as you are doing with C# source code and a wrapper to kickstart the process. It'd have to be a .NET wrapper since getting a batch file to run on WinMo isn't something you can do out of the box.

Who ever said anything about batch files?

My point is that really, none of this shit matters to anyone serious.

This shit from Microsoft is entirely to get crappy incapable programmers using MS dev tools to produce more things that businesses are tied into using MS platforms for. We can sit around and debate it, but the only people who think this is different are those that don't understand development in general, and those are EXACTLY the people MS wants to hit with this sort of thing.

I'm sorry, what was the point?

So what platform are we suppose to use? I did the whole C things for a decade, played around with Objective C, and for low level programming I still use C on WinMo. C# and the whole .Net platform is a godsend compared to C.

Re:90% shared code? so what? (1)

ardiri (245358) | more than 4 years ago | (#31392484)

If you are writing different libraries for each platform -- that's not 100% code re-use

sure it is. if you use libc - is that code re-use? i have done a library for a generic platform for developing on top of. it is a library; that as a developer you dont have to write - you just use it.. just like openGL, libc, mathlib et al

You're not "just distributing" the same binary for each platform.

unless there is a universal "thick binary" standard; you are going to have to ship different binaries. thats how it is.

What are you using for graphics, sounds, storage, etc. on each platform?

graphics - you can generically define graphic sets based on DPI. scaling, layout design. it is not difficult to play with different resolutions. as for audio; worst case; you have PCM audio.

You're doing this without a bunch of #ifdef's?

yes!

How are you accounting for different screen resolutions, graphics hardware, touch capabilities, and other hardware difference?

very good design. :)

but seriously - a good architect design can allow you to dynamically detect, load and work with functionalities across platforms. abstraction is dangerous - as it typically defines a common denominator. like web technologies are being dynamic in the way they work (ref: RESTful) - you can do the same with programming.

i've been working with mobile platforms for 10+ years and i've played with almost every platform out there. i avoid .NET and Java like the plague for mobile applications - the end results are very slow and just doing deliver what i want from a programming environment.. sure, i need to do more effort - but the results are better.

this is what i do for a living as well. if you want to discuss more offline - you can reach me via the contact me section on my website.

No text-to-speech in XNA (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 4 years ago | (#31392706)

as for audio; worst case; you have PCM audio.

That's not the worst case. The worst case is XNA's solution "XACT", where you have to precompile all audio assets into your solution. You can't synthesize audio at runtime, which means no chance of text-to-speech.

i avoid .NET and Java like the plague for mobile applications

Then how do you target BlackBerry and Android, both of which use Java? Or how do you justify to your boss the lost sales from not targeting these platforms?

Re:No text-to-speech in XNA (1)

ardiri (245358) | more than 4 years ago | (#31393210)

Then how do you target BlackBerry and Android, both of which use Java?

android - NDK (native development kit)
the library portion i provide is actually still Java; but with JNI calls to the real meat of the code.

Or how do you justify to your boss the lost sales from not targeting these platforms?

i support android - i have demo versions in place - so, thats not an issue. as for justifying it to my boss? i am my own boss - justified. but you do raise a valid point.

Re:90% shared code? so what? (2, Insightful)

maxume (22995) | more than 4 years ago | (#31391594)

If you have platform specific bits, you merely have very high code reuse, not 100% code reuse.

Re:90% shared code? so what? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31392198)

So you are saying you are a Java programmer?

Re:90% shared code? so what? (1)

ardiri (245358) | more than 4 years ago | (#31392546)

90% shared code? so what? (Score:-1, Troll)

is it me - or are some of the slashdot moderators total idiots? either apple or microsoft fan boys. when i was your age you were probably still in diapers. obviously they miss the point. oh well.

Re:90% shared code? so what? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31392696)

These days we make the point instead of mocking those less intelligent than us who don't see it, grandpa.

Not Cross Platform (5, Insightful)

Foofoobar (318279) | more than 4 years ago | (#31391436)

Technically thats same platform, different devices. Cross platform would be if they had the running on iPhone, Windows 7, Playstation and Linux. THAT would have been impressive (not to mention newsworthy).

We expect them to be pushing studd across their own platforms. Not news.

Re:Not Cross Platform (2, Insightful)

Vermyndax (126974) | more than 4 years ago | (#31391480)

Yep, you beat me to it. I was going to comment... how is this cross-platform? It's all Windows technologies and .NET. That's hardly cross-platform. Show it to me on Windows, Linux, Mac, Wii, Xbox and PS3 and that'll be something to post an article about.

Re:Not Cross Platform (2, Funny)

DeKO (671377) | more than 4 years ago | (#31391620)

Remember, one of the definitions of cross platform is that it still works after a system restart.

Re:Not Cross Platform (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31392534)

Well that only means it runs in Windows!

Re:Not Cross Platform (5, Interesting)

UnknowingFool (672806) | more than 4 years ago | (#31391888)

Funny thing about the "cross-platform" comment is the employee is admitting something that MS has tried to obscure from consumers: Their different product lines are not using the same OS. Techies have long known that Windows Mobile isn't anything like Windows desktop or their Xbox 360 OS. Whereas their competitor Apple is using OS X variants for their computers, iPhone/iPod Touch, and now the iPad, MS has tried to leverage the "Windows" name brand by putting it on different software in name only.

Re:Not Cross Platform (1)

forkazoo (138186) | more than 4 years ago | (#31392184)

Technically thats same platform, different devices. Cross platform would be if they had the running on iPhone, Windows 7, Playstation and Linux. THAT would have been impressive (not to mention newsworthy).

We expect them to be pushing studd across their own platforms. Not news.

The device is part of the platform, so it is cross platform, just weakly so. OTOH, I have no idea why you think what you describe would be 'newsworthy.' I can run a GUI app with OpenGL written in python on my Mac, Windows, and Linux PC's of any CPU architecture, and then move the same application to my mobile phone and run it unmodified. It wouldn't be as fast as native binaries for each platform, but if portability is what you really want to show off, then running the exact same thing on each platform is the first level where it starts to get at all impressive.

Re:Not Cross Platform (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31392386)

Technically, if Mono supported this stuff on Linux, you could use the Windows binary and run it too without changing code.

Re:Not Cross Platform (1)

BitZtream (692029) | more than 4 years ago | (#31392426)

By your definition of platform, sure.

Unfortunately, you have a strict, non-standard interpretation of 'platform' that doesn't fall in line with pretty much the entire rest of the world.

MS, and most of the world has come to believe cross platform means hardware platform OR software platform. FreeBSD 7 is one platform, FBSD 8 is another.

You're definition doesn't match with the majority of the rest of the business world. Its kind of hard for you to communicate effectively with them if you don't understand what they are saying.

My definition of cross platform is much closer to yours, but ... I never bother using it that way in communication since its unlikely the person I'm communicating with is going to have the same definition.

I agree, the way its being used in this context is wrong, but you might as well wake up and realize that people don't give a fuck about your definition, they care only about theirs as it applies to them. You go around telling people something isn't cross platform because it won't run on Linux and you're going to quickly get written off as an idiot by the people who matter. Its fine to say it here on slashdot, but do yourself a favor, when you're not surrounded by geeks, keep in mind they may have different definitions for technical things than you do.

Re:Not Cross Platform (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31392818)

keep in mind they may have different definitions for technical things than you do.

Yeah like calling the entire ATX tower case a "CPU". Let an entire industry dumb down terminology based on the ignorance of a subclass of clueless persons with more money than knowledge.

Re:Not Cross Platform (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31392846)

Bleh. 90%. LOL...

I'm working for a gaming company. We have shared base code for all our games, MORE THAN 90% is the same code for all games, the differences being the way to play the game, as the Wii Remote is definitely not the same as a Windows 7 multitouch screen, and although we could have them all use the same code base, it'd be HORRIFIC to play the exact same games on all platforms.

Inside the engine, in the innards where the game developers never go, more than 80% of the code is also shared (I would frown saying a precise number, how do I calculate this? number of lines, bytecode, what?) ... and all the development is streamlined and exactly the same for all platforms.

What are we supporting?

Mac, PC, Wii, PS3, 360, DS, PSP, Win7 Multitouch, iPhone.

So 90% code on Windows-based systems? I call astroturf PR mission. Been there, done that.

Cross-platform? (1)

clang_jangle (975789) | more than 4 years ago | (#31391456)

Interestingly, not only is the development cross-platform friendly, but the game itself (a simple Indiana Jones platformer was demoed) saves its place and lets you resume from that spot on whichever platform you happen to pick up."

Great! Can't wait til they have this at the BlackBerry app store.

Oh, you didn't really mean what we normally mean by "cross-platform" then?

Re:Cross-platform? (2, Insightful)

thePowerOfGrayskull (905905) | more than 4 years ago | (#31391628)

Indeed. "Cross-platform" for an extremely narrow definition of "platform".

Re:Cross-platform? (4, Insightful)

v1 (525388) | more than 4 years ago | (#31392332)

and lets you resume from that spot on whichever platform you happen to pick

My take was a little different. "oh, so they finally got it to work the way it's expected to work? Congrats.

1) use the same save game format
2) use the same controller layout
3) be network gaming compatible

is this soooo much to ask?

ummm...uh..ummm (1)

BlueWaterBaboonFarm (1610709) | more than 4 years ago | (#31391488)

That is...uhhh...um...truly a horrible spokesman.

Meanwhile... (4, Insightful)

Sarten-X (1102295) | more than 4 years ago | (#31391518)

A simple demo game written on a Fedora system runs perfectly on Ubuntu, Debian, Mandriva, Mint, Arch, and a few dozen others, but nobody paid for a press conference.

Re:Meanwhile... (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31392588)

Um, who modded this a troll? Its a good point. Its pretty typical that something made for um... Windows, should work on Windows. Cross platform would be if they got it to run on Linux, Mac, Windows, PS3, Wii, BlackBerry, iPhone and Android.

Re:Meanwhile... (3, Informative)

tepples (727027) | more than 4 years ago | (#31392626)

A simple demo game written on a Fedora system runs perfectly on [other Linux operating systems], but nobody paid for a press conference.

Unless the game was developed using the Allegro library. Distributions that switched to PulseAudio broke sound in Allegro games because PulseAudio does not like unsigned 16-bit PCM.

Re:Meanwhile... (3, Funny)

dave562 (969951) | more than 4 years ago | (#31392980)

And the 0.02% of the global video game playing market rejoiced!

So now pc games will be dumbed down to phone level (2, Insightful)

Joe The Dragon (967727) | more than 4 years ago | (#31391532)

So now pc games will be Dumbing down to the phone level.
And If you think that deus ex 2 was bad with that then this may even worse.

And will this lock out user maps and mods.

Re:So now pc games will be dumbed down to phone le (1)

Darkness404 (1287218) | more than 4 years ago | (#31392622)

No, rather PC games are becoming console games because that is what gives publishers the most revenue. Why keep supporting a game with user maps when you can release a new game with a few new weapons and maps and charge the full price? Why allow for mods when you can release DLC?

Re:So now pc games will be dumbed down to phone le (1)

gbjbaanb (229885) | more than 4 years ago | (#31392682)

Its already started - Supreme Commander 2, which I hoped would be a perfect extension of SupCom1.. turns out to be dumbed down game designed specially for the XBox. I've heard comments from people that they won't even bother pirating it, let alone buying it.

This is the new world order - dumbed down for the phone is next.

Profit maximization (1)

imfeldma (267468) | more than 4 years ago | (#31391592)

So..., does this mean they'll sell me the same game x times?

Nothing new, you have to pay their tax everytime you buy a new machine already. It's the continuation of their business model. The new thing is introducing a cloud that, omg, allows you to take your data with you.

Re:Profit maximization (1)

Tim C (15259) | more than 4 years ago | (#31392472)

So..., does this mean they'll sell me the same game x times?

Only if you choose to buy it x times.

internet drm will kill cell phone games as costs a (0)

Joe The Dragon (967727) | more than 4 years ago | (#31391674)

internet drm will kill cell phone games as costs are very high for data in some areas and I don't think the cell phone networks will like phones that are on the network 24/7 useing data.

Re:internet drm will kill cell phone games as cost (1)

Darkness404 (1287218) | more than 4 years ago | (#31392716)

Fragmentation will kill cell phone games before networks do. The reason why gaming has thrived on consoles is because it takes the guesswork out of knowing how a game is going to play. PC gaming has always had flaws where no one knows -how- their game is going to play. So the system requirements recommend a 3 Ghz P4 CPU, ok, would a 1.6 Ghz Pentium Dual Core run it? What about an 2.7 Ghz Sempron? The same thing is going to happen to cell phone games, especially on simi-open platforms such as Android and Windows Mobile, while it might be easy to give out the 3 models of iPhones and the 3 generations of iPod touches, what about the million different names for the same Android phone? The T-Mobile G1 is known in some parts as the HTC Dream or the Era G1, and that is just one of the many Android phones. Mix that with different capabilities (a G1 is going to have different capabilities than a Nexus One which is going to be different than a Motorola Backflip) and you have a platform where you don't know if something as demanding as a game is going to work well or at all and who wants to spend money on a download that might not work.

"Cross Platform" (0, Troll)

Lord Lode (1290856) | more than 4 years ago | (#31391680)

Ok, if it doesn't run on any non-Microsoft platform, it's not cross platform. Nice try Microsoft. Better luck next time.

Re:"Cross Platform" (4, Insightful)

Simon80 (874052) | more than 4 years ago | (#31392006)

The headline should read "Microsoft Demos Three Microsoft Platforms Running the Same Game".

Re:"Cross Platform" (1)

Gadget_Guy (627405) | more than 4 years ago | (#31393268)

Nice try Microsoft.

It was not Microsoft who claimed that it was cross platform. They were never trying for that. Eric Rudder explicitly said in the video how this was a demonstration of the "commonality of the platform across all of their offerings". This was just a demonstration of that, plus the use of the Live services to link that save games (which was the only thing that got any audience reaction).

The integration over the net sounds like a nice feature, but if it cannot also save locally then this is just another version of the Ubisoft DRM - where the game won't work without contacting their servers.

Cross platform? (5, Insightful)

owlstead (636356) | more than 4 years ago | (#31391684)

Oh, my god, he's displaying this and he has all these #ifdefs and "copies of projects" within his workspace and a "shared resources" folder for the game. Is that the future of cross platform? That's more like the PAST of cross platform. The way to do this is to create interfaces for the same object and implement that using different devices. What you don't want, ever, is to have all this different execution paths through your code using #ifdefs to instruct the compiler to compile each and every one of them separately.

Re:Cross platform? (1)

Simon80 (874052) | more than 4 years ago | (#31391966)

Amen, mod parent up. This advice isn't Microsoft-specific, it's simply the right way to go in general.

Re:Cross platform? (4, Insightful)

pitdingo (649676) | more than 4 years ago | (#31391986)

Yeah, i do not get it. What is so special about this? Looks primitive to me, and you still do not have a cross platform solution yet. I can make that game even easier and truly cross platform....HTML, Javascript and CSS. Sure there needs to be some hacks to support broken browsers like IE, and yeah it will run in a slow browser like IE, but it the same code runs on Windows, OSX, GNU Linux, Iphone OS (touch, ipad, iphone), Blackberry, Windows BMW 7 Series (sorry could not resist), Solaris, Palm Web OS, etc...

Re:Cross platform? (1)

jonbryce (703250) | more than 4 years ago | (#31393052)

There is no way you are going to run that game in Pocket IE for Windows Mobile 6.1.

Re:Cross platform? (1)

pitdingo (649676) | more than 4 years ago | (#31393458)

Who said anything about Windows Mobile 6.1?

Re:Cross platform? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31392396)

Well, it's the future of *Microsoft's* cross-platform strategy. A truly great improvement over their old "print out the source code, take a picture of it, fax the picture to yourself and then type the code in again" strategy.

Re:Cross platform? (1)

syousef (465911) | more than 4 years ago | (#31392948)

Oh, my god, he's displaying this and he has all these #ifdefs and "copies of projects" within his workspace.

You clearly missed the #ifdef MARKETING_BULLSHIT

Re:Cross platform? (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31393106)

I guess you've never actually used XNA, but feel qualified to talk about it regardless.

The reason you have ifdefs in XNA projects are not because you need to ifdef everything from the graphics API to the networking API and so on. The ifdefs exist, because the different platforms it works across have different capabilities. You do not have an XBox 360 controller on Windows 7 phones, and you do not have a touch screen or keyboard on the XBox 360, the fact is the platforms DO have differences and they simply have to be catered to one way or another, the method used really works just fine and has no disadvantages- go and actually have a play with XNA rather than just whining about it.

The doesn't detract from the fact though, that all your rendering, networking, audio, concurrency, IO, physics, game code and so forth are shared between them.

A lot of people are talking it down as been there done that, but has it really? Well no, it hasn't. The great thing about Xbox live is the profile system and how everything connects back to it- they're just taking that across other platforms, you should be able to buy a game on XBox live arcade and play it wherever you are and that's the goal, simply put this hasn't really been done yet. The closest we've had are flash games and other web based games, but they're limited in performance, and are limited in ability. Even the likes of Steam hasn't stepped away from Windows yet, and only just seems to be creeping across to the Mac, there's no sign of it going to Linux, or phones, or media players, or consoles any time soon, if ever. This is a big deal, because it means you can continue to play your games wherever you are, and it makes it piss easy for developers to do it, you no longer need graphics abstraction layers and so forth like you used to.

Really, if this is not cross platform, and if this is the way of doing things in the past then tell me, where can I find a phone, console, and computer that let me play the same game and move between them without having to manually copy saves, without having to buy a different copy of the game for each platform, without having to care about anything technical, and which makes full use of graphics hardware and isn't some crippled web implementation of something.

What's that you murmured? no such thing currently exists. So this IS in fact a major step forward? thought so.

I love how Slashdot goes idiotic about things when Microsoft is involved, but if this was Apple they'd be masturbating all over the screen because Apple has created something else that "just works" even though when it's Apple it's inherently crippled, and uses a dated horrible language like Objective C.

How is this news? (1)

salesbot (1524011) | more than 4 years ago | (#31391704)

people have been doing this for years via XNA... that crappy indiana jones games is the demo platformer that comes with XNA and compiling for XBOX, Windows, or Zune is just a series of #ifndef XBOX blahblah #endif... save/resume files that work on all platforms isn't impressive: text files have worked on lots of platforms for a while now ;)

Re:How is this news? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31393316)

Better yet, the Indiana Jones platformer is the XNA Game Studio "demo game."

Platform = HARDWARE platform (1)

owlstead (636356) | more than 4 years ago | (#31391740)

For those nerds equally confused, I'm pretty confident that they just mean the hardware platform, since all devices seem to be using some kind of Windows & .NET. So the software platform is more or less the same. It just shows how you can store and load save games from the .NET using different hardware platforms.

Re:Platform = HARDWARE platform (1)

spire3661 (1038968) | more than 4 years ago | (#31391930)

Dont justify their intentional obfuscation

Re:Platform = HARDWARE platform (1)

Sarten-X (1102295) | more than 4 years ago | (#31391988)

Even so, how is it news? I could understand if Apple were to show OS X running well on non-Apple hardware, and implying that it may be legally allowed in the future. That's news. Windows and Windows programs have been running on myriad hardware combinations for years, with few problems (if we ignore Vista). This is not news.

Re:Platform = HARDWARE platform (1)

crazycheetah (1416001) | more than 4 years ago | (#31392456)

ME.

Just make it happen for Civilization 5 (3, Funny)

FunkSoulBrother (140893) | more than 4 years ago | (#31391816)

Make it happen for Civ 5, so I can play the same game on the TV at home, switch to the laptop when the wife wants to watch TV, then switch to the phone in the bathroom at work! My life would be complete.

Takeing civ 4 as guide no phone will have power ru (1)

Joe The Dragon (967727) | more than 4 years ago | (#31392050)

Takeing civ 4 as guide no phone will have the power run it at any good speed also the small screen will make it hard to play.

Re:Takeing civ 4 as guide no phone will have power (1)

FunkSoulBrother (140893) | more than 4 years ago | (#31393038)

Well, in all seriously, I don't care what they do to it graphically. The game would be just as much fun if a grassland was a unanimated green square, mountains were gray, etc. Civ 1 was 320X200 wasn't it? My phone has a better screen, and more processor/RAM than my 486/33 where I played Civ1. I have no idea how CPU intensive the math that calculates all the moves and AI logic is in Civ4 though.

Re:Just make it happen for Civilization 5 (1)

Bat Dude (1449125) | more than 4 years ago | (#31392172)

Bugger civ 5 let's see them do it to WOW that would be .. Well! WOW.

They've got their head in the sand (2, Interesting)

PaladinAlpha (645879) | more than 4 years ago | (#31391890)

I can see where this is news for Microsoft, king of platform-specific APIs. For those of us accustomed to developing using, say, SDL and OpenGL, this isn't news at all, as a properly written program using said libraries will need literally zero changes between several platforms. The input bit is tricky, but 90% reuse is low, I would think.

Re:They've got their head in the sand (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31393386)

The input bit is tricky, but 90% reuse is low, I would think.

Because you sure know what you're talking about! You're in the games industry and have ported code from platform to platform. Oh, wait, you're not and you have no idea what you're talking about. Because if you were (or paid attention at all to the industry), you would know that there are development houses that are dedicated to porting between platforms. Sure, your little SDL spinning teapot works everywhere, but have you ever tried porting something that is non-trivial? Didn't think so.

Is this MS thing the coolest fucking thing ever? Not really, but it's better than the Windows-dependent shit that they've been making for years. Things like Unreal, Unity or Rage are awesome, but no independent developers have access to running those on non-PC platforms. So yes, this is actually cool. Not that you give a shit, because SDL can do that, right? Oh, wait.

Posting as AC because this will get modded flamebait, because it mostly is. Then again, I'm sick of this stupid /. armchair developer crowd acting all high-and-mighty because "yeah, that's trivial." Guess what, morons: it's not (that's part of why the games that you all pirate are so expensive).

In short: shut the fuck up unless you have the slightest clue.

And? (1)

nataflux (1733716) | more than 4 years ago | (#31391964)

This isn't really a big deal, all they had to do was create an environment that can run on multiple platforms, and then run the game under that environment.

What I would love is... (1)

BlackBloq (702158) | more than 4 years ago | (#31392068)

Give me a portal to my xbox360 and make the device a good gamepad,with all the controls there. Being able to play MW2 on a portable phone/psp type device would rock!

Virtual Machine? (2, Insightful)

wmspider (1333299) | more than 4 years ago | (#31392074)

Wow, they actually got a .NET program working on several different microsoft operating systems! Now, seriously, where's the news? .NET runs on a virtual machine. It's just like showing a Java game that "magically" works on several differnet PLATFORMS (and with Java they can be called platforms, a program running on several different microsoft products can hardly be called cross-platform).

With New Hats! (0)

UnknowingFool (672806) | more than 4 years ago | (#31392076)

That reminds me of the Simpsons episode where Lisa comes out with a new doll called Lisa Lionheart. In response to this the Malibu Stacy company wheels out new Malibu Stacy dolls. Well not really new. They just have new hats.

Right now MS is desperately trying to keep their mobile developers. Most of them are leaving for other platforms because there is far more potential to make money. Their mobile platform has been stagnant for a long time in IT years. With Windows 7 Phone a year away and the quiet acknowledgment that Windows 7 Phone Apps will not run Mobile 6.5 apps, MS is trying everything they can to keep developing from abandoning the platform. "Look you can make one version of a game that will run on Mobile, XBox, and desktop. Isn't that neat?"

What about the Zune HD? (1)

chrismsummers (629478) | more than 4 years ago | (#31392226)

Its interesting that they did not also show it on the Zune HD as "Platformer" is also available for it as well.

The same old shit (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31392400)

when it runs on linux, unix or CBM then I'll be impressed

cross-platform != monoculture (1)

bl8n8r (649187) | more than 4 years ago | (#31392418)

this isn't cross-platform, it's an example of an incestuos codebase. Cross-platform means your code can cross os boundaries too. Java, python and perl are examples of cross-platform computing.

M$ is universal. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31392530)

Just like the World Series entirely inside the US.

Is it my mistake or all three said "platforms" doen't include Linux?
Or Mac OS X?
Or *BSD?
Or Solaris?
Or Symbian?
Or Android?
Or Iphone?
Or Maemo?
Or ReactOS?
Or PS3?
Or Wee?

Well, I omitted Amiga and others, but the picture is clear: they're having a ball inside their parking lot.

So, basically, if I ever buy one of these fine M$ products, does it get convenient to buy the others?

What a novel idea!

Only 90% of the code in common? (4, Interesting)

argent (18001) | more than 4 years ago | (#31392794)

God almighty, their code base is more fragmented than I ever imagined.

Even at the worst of the "UNIX wars", if you had to rewrite as much as 10% of your code to get it to run on (say) AIX, SunOS, and System V that meant you'd done a really bad job of isolating the platform-specific parts of your code. If Microsoft can't keep their code bases in sync when they control all of them and they have incentive to do so, they're really slipping.

Re:Only 90% of the code in common? (1)

chentiangemalc (1710624) | more than 4 years ago | (#31393336)

keep in mind this is for 3 completely different hardware types....this is why there is 10% of unshared code, to account for changes in the hardware.

Worthless (1)

hduff (570443) | more than 4 years ago | (#31392942)

Unless it can run on OSX and Linux as well, a consumer game is NOT 'cross platform'. Apparently, their development platform needs some work.

Re:Worthless (1)

dziman (415307) | more than 4 years ago | (#31393250)

cross-platform doesn't mean all platforms. it means some other platform.

Re:Worthless (1)

chentiangemalc (1710624) | more than 4 years ago | (#31393476)

The definition of cross-platform is software that works on more than one system platform. Doesn't have to include OSX and Linux.

Our core management platform is cross-platform, (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31393006)

it runs on anything with a Java 5 or better JRE.

cross platform (1)

McGiraf (196030) | more than 4 years ago | (#31393130)

cross platform:

Windows, Windows and Windows.

yipee!

Re:cross platform (1)

chentiangemalc (1710624) | more than 4 years ago | (#31393344)

Windows Phone Series 7 != Windows XBOX != Windows

Re:cross platform (1)

McGiraf (196030) | more than 4 years ago | (#31393420)

It's all different versions of Windows.

Cross platform windows development (1)

fireman sam (662213) | more than 4 years ago | (#31393174)

This story reminds me of a text book I once purchased that was about cross platform programming using windows. What I failed to realize until after I purchased it was that the platforms were Windows 95, 98, NT 3.51 and NT 4. Also what is so impressive about saving data that is not dependent on the platform, or are microsoft still simply dumping memory and calling it a file format?

Re:Cross platform windows development (1)

dziman (415307) | more than 4 years ago | (#31393226)

Hardware is also part of the platform, is it not?

Abstraction (1)

dziman (415307) | more than 4 years ago | (#31393186)

If you're writing cross-platform code, which may even use different APIs, there will still be more high level code than low level code (in quantity). A lot of this depends on the design of the abstraction that helps adapt between the platforms. With this in mind, I can easily see 90% being obtainable on ANY complex system where there is a lot of high level code.

What Microsoft is likely referring to is that they don't have to change 90% of their low-level code too. This means they have pushed the abstraction further down into the low-level code using directx et al.

But doesn't work on linux? (1)

Sam36 (1065410) | more than 4 years ago | (#31393432)

How worthless
Load More Comments
Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?
or Connect with...

Don't worry, we never post anything without your permission.

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>