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It's No Game At Apple

Zonk posted more than 8 years ago | from the would-be-nice-if-it-were dept.

175

Mac Observer is running a piece by John Martellaro looking at why Apple isn't into gaming. It's just one man's opinion, but he makes some interesting arguments. From the article: "The reality is that Apple has struggled for a long time to avoid the perception that Macs are toys, and so their principle emphasis is on science, small business, education, and the creative arts. All very grownup stuff. If a market doesn't appear on Apple's main page tab, you can be sure it's a secondary market."

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fr1st ps0t!!!1! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15480695)

GNAA pwnz j00!!!

Well... (2, Funny)

revlayle (964221) | more than 8 years ago | (#15480704)

I guess they make enough bling selling to the user-base demographgic as is....

Apple has always been about Jobs (1, Offtopic)

KJSwartz (254652) | more than 8 years ago | (#15481082)

Because Steve Jobs liked Graphics
Apple created QuickDraw and QuickTime.

Because Steve Jobs liked Communications
Apple created AppleTalk, MacTCP and OpenTransport.

Because Steve Jobs liked Plug & Play
Apple created the ADB bus and FireWire.

Because Steve Jobs liked Music
Apple created the Apple Quadra, iTunes, iPod and GarageBand.

Strange thing is, Steve Jobs doesn't like shoot-'em up Video Games
So why promote such a wasteful way of life to people?
Leave THAT to the Dells and Microsoft/XB.

Re:Apple has always been about Jobs (-1, Flamebait)

halfcuban (972832) | more than 8 years ago | (#15481649)

Because Steve Jobs likes to own the whole system, Apple users are locked into their hardware. Because Steve Jobs needed his company NeXT bailed out, Mac OS X was adopted and the company bought out. Also, I'm tired of people crediting Steve Jobs for everything Apple has ever done. Guess what? Steve was gone by the time QuickDraw and QuickTime were developed and he was ass-halfway out the door by the time AppleTalk was put in in 1984. OpenTransport was developed he came back on board, as was the Apple Quadra line. ADB was developed by Wonziak, not Jobs. If you're going be a Mac fanboy atleast get your history right.

Re:Apple has always been about Jobs (1)

Embedded2004 (789698) | more than 8 years ago | (#15481776)

"Strange thing is, Steve Jobs doesn't like shoot-'em up Video Games
So why promote such a wasteful way of life to people?"

I don't get that? How is playing video games more wasteful than listening to music? ...It isn't.

It's just a harder market to get into.

Re:Apple has always been about Jobs (1)

BewireNomali (618969) | more than 8 years ago | (#15481869)

Many would argue that listening to music makes them more productive, not less. Listening to music doesn't preclude productivity whereas playing video games does. Unless you're playing games because you're a professional gamer, or you're playing an educational game that makes you better at your profession.

Re:Apple has always been about Jobs (2, Interesting)

just_forget_it (947275) | more than 8 years ago | (#15482859)

That's all true until Steve Jobs changes his mind.

Recall that Steve Jobs thought putting video on an iPod was a bad idea. Yet, the very next iPod released had that capability. Maybe he really changed his mind or maybe he was trying to throw folks like ThinkSecret off his trail. Apple has a history of shunning and then embracing new markets.

Console Gaming + PVR Mac (2, Interesting)

elliotj (519297) | more than 8 years ago | (#15481210)

This guy has an interesting blog entry speculating that Apple will go after the console gaming market [objectiveresponder.com] . This sounds pretty plausible: if they do build a PVR (and Front Row is SO BEGGING for it), then they'd be in the living room. How hard would it be to add some bluetooth controllers and take a bite out of the XBox360 pie?

Re:Console Gaming + PVR Mac (1)

dloose (900754) | more than 8 years ago | (#15481468)

It's an interesting idea, but I don't think it would be much more than a gimmicky addition to an Apple branded PVR (assuming they even make one in the first place). I don't think Apple has the wherewithal to design and market a successful game console in an ecosystem that already contains several blood-thirsty, 800-pound gorillas, but they could easily add an "arcade" section to the iTMS for little time-killers like Tetris or Bejeweled. Simple games like that don't need sophisticated, force-feedback controllers. They can be played with a TV (or DVR) remote without much loss of control.

If there was any doubt, MS has already shown that this kind of idea can work with the 360 arcade. It seems as though the only games I hear about for the 360 are X-Box Arcade games like Geometry Wars and the aforementioned Bejeweled.

Of course, the truth is that Apple won't really produce anything like this. Much like the Mac tablet, the cube 2, and the iPhone, people will continue to expect the announcement of the MacDVR at the next big Mac conference only to be disappointed when Jobs' "one more thing" is just another bump to iPod capacity or a CPU upgrade for iMacs. Or maybe I'm just pessimistic.

The reality... (5, Informative)

Ant P. (974313) | more than 8 years ago | (#15480709)

Their attempt [wikipedia.org] at entering the games market was a flop. Not even a _spectacular_ flop, since nobody really noticed its existence.

Re:The reality... (2, Interesting)

RexRhino (769423) | more than 8 years ago | (#15480887)

How much do you want to bet if they came out with the a new console, the "iGame", with a white designer pod look, and designed to interface with your iPod, that it would be a groundbreaking success!? All the Apple fanatics living the i-lifestyle would buy it for sure!

Back when Apple created the Pippin, Apple didn't have the widespread cult following it does now. Apple wasn't a "lifestyle choice".

Re:The reality... (3, Informative)

Haeleth (414428) | more than 8 years ago | (#15481031)

How much do you want to bet if they came out with the a new console, the "iGame", with a white designer pod look, and designed to interface with your iPod, that it would be a groundbreaking success!?

Not much.

The thing about music and video is that they're very easy to convert into any given format. Apple can easily introduce products like the iPod that simply take data that other people have created and play it back. That's trivial. But games aren't. Games have to be designed to run on a certain platform, not the other way round. Would Apple be able to convince people to develop games for this "iGame"? Unlikely.

So they'd have to make it a clone of someone else's platform, or license someone else's platform and brand it. Your "iGame" would either be an overpriced Apple-branded DS, or it would be restricted to playing crappy Java games designed for mobile phones. Either way, it's hard to see who exactly would want one.

Re:The reality... (1)

91degrees (207121) | more than 8 years ago | (#15482097)

True to an extent. However, it does depend on positioning. The differences between a console and a PC aren't quite as extreme as people seem to think. Perhaps the PS3 and XBox 360 are a little more unusual with their multiprocessing capabilities, but you'll still see a typical game is mostly game logic, with the platform specific stuff such as graphics easily separated and ported to different platforms. It should be quite easy to port games that are already multiplatform, such as Star Wars Lego, to a new system.

Had Nintendo not got there first, I could imagine Apple coming up with something similar to the Revolution. Something very cheap and targetted much more at the mainstream than the other contendors, with a strong emphasis on alternative "lifestyle" type games. Whether such a thing would be a success without having Nintendo's reputation backing it is uncertain, but perhaps we'll see something similar in a few years.

I can't imagine that Apple wouldn't at least consider the market if one of their staff had a concept for a games system.

Re:The reality... (1)

baldass_newbie (136609) | more than 8 years ago | (#15481061)

They have a console that does all that.
It's call a Mac mini. It has DVI output.
All you need is a fancy USB 2 or FireWire controller and you would be set.
In fact, once I opened the box, it was one of the first things I thought.

Re:The reality... (3, Informative)

IntlHarvester (11985) | more than 8 years ago | (#15481023)

I happened to walk into Fry's Electronics during the two week period when the Pippen was actually being pushed.

Pippen was not sold as a game console. It was demonstrated as an Internet box similar to WebTV. I think there was also some CD-ROM type shovelware titles for it and maybe some edutainment software. WebTV + CD-i.

Yes, it probably was developed originally as some sort of game box, but somewhere along the way Apple woke up.

Re:The reality... (4, Informative)

gEvil (beta) (945888) | more than 8 years ago | (#15481170)

Remember that Apple didn't actually manufacture the Pippin. The only company that signed on as a licensee and ever manufactured and sold the Pippin was Bandai, [wikipedia.org] a Japanese toy company.

Re:The reality... (1)

IntlHarvester (11985) | more than 8 years ago | (#15481250)

That's true -- I should have mentioned that the Pippen marketing did not associate it with Apple or Macs in any way.

Re:The reality... (5, Insightful)

hey! (33014) | more than 8 years ago | (#15482621)

Pippen was not sold as a game console. It was demonstrated as an Internet box similar to WebTV. I think there was also some CD-ROM type shovelware titles for it and maybe some edutainment software. WebTV + CD-i.

Which is the kind of mistake you pay your marketing guys to help you avoid.

I've been in on business decisions of this nature, albeit on a much smaller scale, and I know how this thought process works. In order to get more revenue, you try to goose up your volume by spreading out your product line. The logic seems reasonable: you take something you already know how to do, in this case design a computer, and design a somewhat different computer. It seems on the surface safer and easier than getting into a completely different business. But in fact, it's the worst possible thing you can do.

People who talk about Apple being a company that breaks the rule of "do one thing best" are wrong, because they define what Apple does incorrectly. By that way of thinking, Apple is a personal computer company, and providing a cheap computer (albeit through a licensee) is just more of the same. Producing an iPod is a radical departure. But in fact Apple is not a personal computer company: they're a company that produces luxury technological appliances. Offering a cheap PC means Apple has to be a high end and a low end computer company at the same time. Offering IPods is simply occupying the same niche in the music world that they do in the personal computer world. It's doing one thing well, only in two places.

The mini is an interesting case because in some ways it resembles the Pippin. But the Pippin was really just a cheap Mac knockoff. And while the Mini is a indeed a cheap computer, I bet most people who buy them don't think of them that way. Apple was smart to make the tiny form factor, even though it would probably be cheaper to make a mini tower or desktop form factor. It means the $$/cubic inch is high. Also they explicitly marketed it to PC users who had had a positive experience with the iPod. From the point of view of that user, they probably have a Windows PC they can live with, but hate. At $500, the mini looks like a luxury, but one that you can afford if you want it badly enough. Like the iPod. I think some Mac users might have switched to the mini for the form factor, but if you're an Apple consumer drone who's been trudging the upgrade treadmill for years, the Mini isn't going to be an upgrade, more of a sidegrade. I bet a lot of the ones who broke down and bought a Mini for form factor bought another Mac as well.

Re:The reality... (1)

soft_guy (534437) | more than 8 years ago | (#15481231)

Apple had grossly incompetent management at the time the Pippin was created.

Apple is the same from the beginning of times (1)

jackhitrov (977971) | more than 8 years ago | (#15480710)

I really like that face ;) http://www.worddisplay.com?apple [worddisplay.com]

Science? (2, Informative)

Unc-70 (975866) | more than 8 years ago | (#15480759)

Creative arts yes, science? I'm not so sure. Having worked in science in academia and industry, all the work is done on PCs and a little on SGis. The only Mac I used was an ancient thing that had some PCR simulation software from the early 90s (I think). Oh, and Igor Pro http://www.wavemetrics.com/ [wavemetrics.com] for electrophysiology but that was moving towards PCs when I left anyway.

Anyone know of any current Mac science applications?

Re:Science? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15480810)

I see more Macs in my physics department. Probably because so much work here gets done on Unix, and Macs are a friendly Unix. Still mostly PCs, though.

Re:Science? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15480833)

At my university, the genonomics people use clusters of Xserves to do various number crunching stuff. Also, I know someone who does condensed matter research and he does all his work on a cute little iBook.

Re:Science? (1)

MustardMan (52102) | more than 8 years ago | (#15480902)

I do condensed matter research, and used to do it on a cute little ibook. Now I do it on a cute little macbook.

Re:Science? (1)

penguinstorm (575341) | more than 8 years ago | (#15480844)

I think the new rubber on the road under OS X (that is, FreeBSD Unix-y underpinnings) is helping with the traction problem here.

Re:Science? (1)

maubp (303462) | more than 8 years ago | (#15480891)

In our Maths department, Macs are very popular with the accademics for their personal machines - especially the laptops.

Mind you, for their clusters etc they use Linux (i.e. hard core computation). I guess almost all the Windows machines in the building are the generic computer labs managed by central IT services.

Re:Science? (5, Informative)

kakapo (88299) | more than 8 years ago | (#15480968)


I am particle physicist / cosmologist, and macs are widely used in my field -- both for number crunching, and as personal machines.

To provide some anecdotal data, I was at a conference last month and I would guess that at least 50% of the speakers were using Macs, and that ratio has been climbing steadily over the last few years. With the exception of Mathematica, all the "technical" software I compile from source, and these packages almost always assume you have access to a Unix commandline of one sort or another. Moreover, I have friends in the bioinformatics world, and many of them seem to be working with Macs.

(FWIW, I am looking forward to buying an intel Mac Book -- I bought an HP laptop for my post-doc, which he uses with Linux, and it runs circles around my G4 powerbook.)

Re:Science? (4, Insightful)

Shisha (145964) | more than 8 years ago | (#15480988)

The platform of choice in different parts of academia used to be hugely determined by what platform have the software tools that the scientists need been written for. Since you do not say what field you're talking about, I can't possible comment on the accuracy of your statement.

Here [apple.com] you might find a lot of very serious applications that are getting used on a daily basis. This [macresearch.org] is a quite recent initiative. But it's clear from the way Apple has incorporated distributed computing into the heart of OS X that it takes science seriously (if you have a Mac, have a look under the Sharing in System Preferences and look for Xgrid).

Re:Science? (5, Informative)

tb3 (313150) | more than 8 years ago | (#15481052)

Anecdotally, I understand that Macs and OS X are popular in the biomed fields. Apple themselves have ported BLAST [apple.com] to OS X.

Here's a huge list of all the scientific applications available, from the Apple Site: www.apple.com/science/software/ [apple.com]

Re:Science? (1)

Doctor Memory (6336) | more than 8 years ago | (#15481104)

When I was doing LIMS for large pharmaceutical R&D shops, they used Macs a lot for molecular modeling. They used ChemDraw for modeling, and JChem for looking up matching compounds in the database. Oh, and stuff from Daylight -- we used their libraries to add some capabilities to our stuff.

This was all five or six years ago, not sure what's available now.

Re:Science? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15481129)

We develop bioinformatics and 3D visualization software, primarily for the neuroscience field. The work in our lab is primarily based on MacOS, and has been for 15 years. The only times we use other platforms is when a particular application isn't available on the Mac, like LabView. Our processing pipelines, visualization server, and reconstruction software are just about all MacOS. Our end-user client software is Java, so it can stumble along on most platforms. A large part of the Mouse Brain Library (http://mbl.org/ [mbl.org] ) is also Mac-based.

Re:Science? (1)

Gat0r30y (957941) | more than 8 years ago | (#15481235)

how about MATLab or Mathmatica or running python libs. I know I basically had to run some of my MATLab programs on macs at school to save time.

Re:Science? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15481258)

As said above, the laptops are very popular - unix based and all the hardware and power saving stuff works out-of-the-box. If you can get your department to pay towards it, then you get a Mac laptop for sure. (Even I would nowadays, I'm a grad student and also a gamer but boot camp covers that).

I've even seen some PowerMacs and Mac Minis, though they're pretty rare since the bang-for-buck of x86 whitebox + linux is so far ahead of anything Apple has. I think Macs tend to get deployed in science in situations where you don't have enough linux geeks working in the group to ensure smooth running.

Re:Science? (1)

oudzeeman (684485) | more than 8 years ago | (#15481302)

I work at a genetics research lab with about 1200 employees and there are about 500 macs on campus.

Re:Science? (4, Interesting)

thebdj (768618) | more than 8 years ago | (#15481572)

I was doing IT work once at a cancer research center. A great many of the doctors and labs used Macs instead of PCs. Some of this was simply preference because the majority of the SW was available on both platforms; however, a lot of the work some of these doctors did was also very graphical in nature. I believe that when you get into sciences that require a bit more visuals and maybe even some photo editting, you begin to see more Macs used.

Now in the engineering world, I see a lot fewer Macs. In college, the EE labs that did not run windows were HP-UX machines running on PA-RISC processors. CIS for the longest time was running nothing but Solaris thin clients in the labs connected to some serious slow servers. They later changed to mostly windows, but a lot of the work was still done using SSH to connect to the Solaris systems.

I can also attest that the at least a few of the stats professors as my alma mater used Sun workstations. I really think when you want number crunching power people used to lead more towards these systems because of the architectures used and maybe even the 64-bit computing. The latter isn't really an advantage anymore, since most mainstream PCs can be had with 64-bit processors. But, in the end, yes Macs do get some use...and it may be because of a Power issue as well. PPCs were a might nice processor, too bad you will soon only be able to get them in workstations and servers that make the PowerMacs look cheap.

Re:Science? (4, Informative)

schwanerhill (135840) | more than 8 years ago | (#15481629)

I'm an astronomer, and my department and the laptop selection at conferences are both roughly a 50/50 split between Macs and Linux. (There were essentially no Macs about 5 years ago, before the advent of OS X. Some astronomers use Windows for PowerPoint, but very rarely for actual work -- most of the software we use is *nix-based.)

I don't think Macs have much of a foothold in the life sciences (about which I know very little), but they're quite popular in the physical sciences.

Re:Science? (1)

UnknowingFool (672806) | more than 8 years ago | (#15481687)

Maybe back a decade or so, it wasn't the case, but today Macs are perfect for science. Ever since OS X, Macs have allowed for scientists to combine the two different machines that they've needed. They have a general computer to handle everyday tasks like email and writing papers. They also have a Unix workstation that runs all of the computing needs.

Anyone know of any current Mac science applications?


Here [apple.com] is a short list. Since OS X is Unix based, it should be easy to port any Unix based applications. Well easier than porting to Windows which is a different OS altogether.

Re:Science? (1)

CubFanHere (980229) | more than 8 years ago | (#15481825)

Actually yes. I used to run technical support for a company called APS Technologies before it was aquired by La Cie, Ltd. Some of our biggest customers were in the scientific research field and used Macs and SGI machines. Companies like Glaxo-Smith-Kline, Genentech, Merck & Co, Abbot Laboratories, and Amgen, etc. Our other big Macintosh customers were defense contractors and space organizations like JPL (Jet Propolsion Labs), Raytheon Missle Systems, NASA, Boeing, Allied Signal, Computer Sciences Corporation, Lockheed Martin, Rockwell International. They used our hard drives because we had sort of a niche market for Macs and Unix machines.

Re:Science? (3, Informative)

99BottlesOfBeerInMyF (813746) | more than 8 years ago | (#15481935)

...science? I'm not so sure. Having worked in science in academia and industry, all the work is done on PCs and a little on SGis.

I see a lot of replies to this talking about scientific fields that have a lot of macs. I can tell you in biological sciences and biochemistry labs my girlfriend works at, most of the machines are macs and some of the big, expensive machines can only be accessed using a mac. What surprises me, though, is that no one has mentioned computer science. I work at a company that develops specialized network security devices, and over the last few years macs have gone from maybe 5% of the machines to more like 55%. For that matter, NANOG is going on right now. What percentage of the laptops there are macs, do you suppose? I don't have numbers, but I know there are a lot of them.

Re:Science? (1)

FatMacDaddy (878246) | more than 8 years ago | (#15482436)

I can't tell you what applications they're running, but the NIH staff uses tons of Macs and very few PCs.

Re:Science? (1)

richmaine (128733) | more than 8 years ago | (#15482462)

When is this that you left? If it was in the last few years, then all I can say is that you must have had an awfully narrow perspective. Macs are very big in many areas of scientific and technical work today. In particular, there is a huge difference between OS X and previous Mac systems. The Unix base of OS X has attracted large numbers of scientific and engineeering users. If your experience was pre-OSX, then it almost doesn't count; it is a different world in terms of scientific stuff.

I'm typing this on my Mac. I've got a Linux box at my desk also, but haven't bothered to even power it on for several months.

Do I know of any current scientific Mac apps? Yes. Start with almost all the Unix/X11 apps. That's a lot, including some specilaized ones that I wrote for my area.

Umm...Halo? (5, Insightful)

penguinstorm (575341) | more than 8 years ago | (#15480767)

I guess that's why Steve made such a huge deal out of Halo at the PowerMac G4 launch. (I still curse Bill Gates for making me wait so long for that on a Mac.)

And Myst.

And why they featured game design prominently on a number of user examples on their home page for some time.

Probably why they partnered with Bandai lo those many years ago to create the Pippin.

It's a secondary market because Apple hasn't gained traction, not because Apple wants it be a secondary market.

Re:Umm...Halo? (3, Funny)

Quarters (18322) | more than 8 years ago | (#15480888)

Breakout....Super Breakout....Photoshop....

Re:Umm...Halo? (1)

neoform (551705) | more than 8 years ago | (#15481201)

I'd say more importantly, if apple really wasn't interested in that "toy" appeal, why are they selling ipods to kids?

fact is, apple will make whatever they think will sell, if mac games will help sell more macs, that's what they'll do..

Re:Umm...Halo? (1)

soft_guy (534437) | more than 8 years ago | (#15481305)

The anti-toy thing has nothing to do with the iPod. It has to do with the initial perception that people had about GUI that it was "like a video game". "Serious users" used command line. There were even lots of people that said the Mac was "only for games". I kept hearing this over and over from idiots like John Dvorak up until Windows became popular. Since that time, I've heard the same people do nothing but dump on the Mac for not having enough games.

Re:Umm...Halo? (1)

penguinstorm (575341) | more than 8 years ago | (#15482569)

>> GUI that it was "like a video game". "Serious users" used command line. There were even lots of people
>> that said the Mac was "only for games"

Damn straight. I was a pretty mean Choplifter guy with the command line interface. Only way to play.

Well... (-1, Troll)

gowen (141411) | more than 8 years ago | (#15480841)

Maybe they're targeting their computers at grown-ups?

Re:Well... (2, Informative)

PixelScuba (686633) | more than 8 years ago | (#15480895)

Or maybe they're targeting children since the average gamer is an adult. http://www.theesa.com/facts/top_10_facts.php [theesa.com]

Re:Well... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15481197)

Is that a mean or a median age? Big difference.

Re:Well... (1)

Golias (176380) | more than 8 years ago | (#15482493)

Is that a mean or a median age? Big difference.

It's certainly been mean to by back and knees, sonny.

Re:Well... (1)

TheGavster (774657) | more than 8 years ago | (#15481028)

They most certainly target their computers who use the term 'grown-ups' as a condescending term.

They Can't Ignore WoW (0)

Black-Man (198831) | more than 8 years ago | (#15480870)

At their peril, of course. He has a point... an iMac in its current form is not gamer friendly... even WOW friendly. A PowerMac *is* - and handles WoW quite well... but if they price it out of the reach of family's... they expose themselves for great risk!

Re:They Can't Ignore WoW (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15480897)

How is the current iMac not WoW-friendly? Even the iMac G4 does a decent job at playing WoW (although Blizzard deserves as much credit for this as Apple).

Re:They Can't Ignore WoW (5, Interesting)

RSquaredW (969317) | more than 8 years ago | (#15480960)

The MacBook, on the other hand...

I had a friend who IMed me last night asking if I'd been on the Battlefield 2 tracker earlier (I hadn't, was playing America's Army, but whatever), and I asked him where the heck he'd gotten a PC from. Turned out he'd bought a new macbook and was using the dual-boot/Windows for games and not much else. Battlefield 2 is a pretty graphics-heavy game, and I was interested to hear that the hardware (even on a laptop) can handle gaming well.

At that point the question becomes: does the mac need gaming? If those who're interested in games can use the OSX for most of their work and winXP for games, does Apple even need to try to cater to that market natively? The solution my friend has appeals to me a lot (I'm currently dualing WinXP/Ubuntu, but FreeBSD-based OSX could easily take the place of the second). It really comes down to the tools-for-the-job argument, and if OSX can provide a better environment for my office (currently WinXP) and compiling (currently linux) tasks while allowing the alternative superior-for-games environment (obviously WinXP) if I want it, I think it's really a best of both worlds.

Re:They Can't Ignore WoW (1)

E-Rock (84950) | more than 8 years ago | (#15481252)

I'm not so sure Apple wants a setup where in a user's mind they use Apple software for the drudgery and Windows for all the fun stuff.

Re:They Can't Ignore WoW (1)

sgt scrub (869860) | more than 8 years ago | (#15481373)

That begs the question, Will there be an increase in people using cracked copies of windows for duel boot with the belief they don't have to keep them updated.

I prefer games that I can run native on Linux. Fortunately my favorites are available. If I used a MAC I still wouldn't buy a copy of Windows just to play games. Needless to say, the temptation would be there.

What kinds of problems would come from MAC (and some Linux) users that choose to have an already pathetically unsecure system running in duel boot mode to play games?

How many people play WoW for less time than it takes Slammer to send 100k emails?

Re:They Can't Ignore WoW (1)

Golias (176380) | more than 8 years ago | (#15482521)

I prefer games that I can run native on Linux. Fortunately my favorites are available. If I used a MAC...

So not big on network games, then? Even with Linux, it would be tough to get on line without a MAC. ;)

Re:They Can't Ignore WoW (1)

Matt Amato (2494) | more than 8 years ago | (#15481389)

I've done this for years with Windows and Linux, as have most people. My biggest annoyance (and I'm sure others' too) is that we don't want to shutdown everything we're doing in Linux to boot into Windows for a little gaming. Sometimes, I want to take a break from a game to check my mail, surf the web or check on a background downloading. If I'm booting into windows for gaming, those things that I want to do in linux become unavailable.

Re:They Can't Ignore WoW (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15481555)

The MacBook Pro is basically an iMac in a laptop enclosure. The MacBook is an iMac with a mediocre integrated GPU. Neither is particularly good for gaming.

Re:They Can't Ignore WoW (1)

Golias (176380) | more than 8 years ago | (#15482566)

The MacBook Pro is basically an iMac in a laptop enclosure. The MacBook is an iMac with a mediocre integrated GPU. Neither is particularly good for gaming.

But all three are "WoW-friendly". I know, because I've played it on a MacBook, and it runs just dandy. I also have a friend who has cheerfully pitched her "Game PC" into a closet in favor of playing WoW on the iMac. It actually kicks all kinds of ass as a gaming rig, as long as you're happy with the screen.

Re:They Can't Ignore WoW (1)

snuf23 (182335) | more than 8 years ago | (#15481802)

He must have been using a Macbook Pro which has an ATI x1600 just like the iMac. The Macbook and mini have Intel integrated graphics chips which would be terrible for Battlefield 2. The x1600 isn't even a very good card either, mid range cards like the Nvidia 7600GT kick the crap out of it.

Re:They Can't Ignore WoW (1)

kwerle (39371) | more than 8 years ago | (#15481093)

I've been playing WoW on my BookPro for .. as long as I've had the pro. I've hit MC with a full 40man, and it ran just fine. I find it hard to believe that the iMac performs worse. Does it really?

Re:They Can't Ignore WoW (1)

happyemoticon (543015) | more than 8 years ago | (#15481902)

The performance of the iMac is identical to (or better than) its equally-specced counterpart in the MBP line. There is evidence [hardmac.com] that the performance of the iMac is better due to underclocking on the video card.

At their peril, of course. He has a point... an iMac in its current form is not gamer friendly... even WOW friendly. A PowerMac *is* - and handles WoW quite well... but if they price it out of the reach of family's... they expose themselves for great risk!

Balderdash. A current-gen iMac plays WoW as well. I've even heard suggestions that it plays better on a current top-of-the-line iMac than it played on the PowerMac. And by the way don't... use elipses... in writing... they... make....... you sound like... a dipshit! Yeah, the iMac isn't an Alienware system, but it's not designed to be. You don't need one of those beasts to game properly, and the iMac does just fine. In any given MC run, there are five or so people who constantly have to reboot their computers or get kicked from the game because they have too much adware (connection issues aside). I would be surprised if there was one of these annoying raiders on the planet who was using a current-generation iMac.

Re:They Can't Ignore WoW (1)

envious1 (797639) | more than 8 years ago | (#15481320)

Are you up to date on your facts? The iMacs run WoW fine. I don't have a frame rate in MC, but I heard it runs smoothly. Though I agree with you on one thing: Apple needs to create a gaming rig. If they had a 2PCIe 16x mac and one 8x slot (for an audio card) and dumped an NVIDIA 7950 or a Radeon X1900 XTX in there, they could sell it for the price of a iMac (sans display of course). And it would make a pretty kick ass gaming system. But let's not ignore the fact that no one buys a mac to play games on. It's just a nice feature.

Re:They Can't Ignore WoW (3, Informative)

Gropo (445879) | more than 8 years ago | (#15481405)

I regularly play WoW on a Sawtooth G4 with a dual 1.2 Ghz upgrade and AGP 2x Radeon 9000... Fail to see how a new iMac with Core Duo and X1600 PCIE is "not even WoW friendly"

Creative arts? (5, Insightful)

HellPhish (91069) | more than 8 years ago | (#15480874)

"The reality is that Apple has struggled for a long time to avoid the perception that Macs are toys, and so their principle emphasis is on science, small business, education, and the creative arts.

Maybe I'm forgetting something, but isn't game design a creative art?

Re:Creative arts? (4, Funny)

Mir322 (519212) | more than 8 years ago | (#15481388)

Play Any Electronic Arts games lately?

I think (0, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15480884)

It's time for Steve Jobs to get his game on.

(cue laugh-track)

two things (4, Interesting)

poppen_fresh (65995) | more than 8 years ago | (#15480916)

One, he talks briefly about the business decisions behind this, and then spends much of the time about how Apple "feels" about games. I don't think this plays as much of a role as he thinks. Apple is a much more business driven company than this man wants to believe.

Two, take a look at the apple developer's main page, developer.apple.com [apple.com] . The top item for featured content is "Developing Games on Mac OS X...".

Hrm

Re:two things (1)

wbren (682133) | more than 8 years ago | (#15481033)

Apple is a much more business driven company than this man wants to believe.
I think Apple is more business driven than most Apple fans want to believe, not just this one guy. Oh I forgot, the $99 leather iPod case promotes a culture of creation and life.

Or maybe it's just gouging people because you know they'll buy it.

Damned stupid. (5, Interesting)

kneeslasher (878676) | more than 8 years ago | (#15480973)

That has to be one of the silliest articles I have ever read.

The author waxes lyrical on how games personify "power" and "death" and "destruction" (and later mentions how Apple likes "control" by the way). He also states how an instrument of this "power" (the US military) is "wedded" to Windows.

It seems to me as if the author is vastly over-rating the Apple's "ethical" stance on its products. Does anyone for a moment believe that if the US military gave Apple an exclusive contract to, say, supply the servers for, to take a silly example, America's Army, that Apple wouldn't snap it up? "Sorry Mr Army Guy, we have to turn down your $50 million deal because, uh, we don't like 'power' and 'death'."?

Apple *should* concentrate on the games market: it is a given that a large percentage of Mac users like to play games. If they need to keep a Windows beige box handy (or, these days, reboot), isn't that axiomatically a detriment towards the concept of Apple providing an end-to-end solution to a user's needs?

Occam's razor suggests that the reason Apple doesn't concentrate on games has been that traditionally, with a different CPU architecture and a fraction of the market, it simply wasn't worth the effort to woo game developers to do a difficult task for which the results would be mediocre at best. Add to that the lagging speeds and specs of Apple's consumer level offerings (I refer to the G4 based systems), Apple's actually *couldn't* play fashionable games that well. And emulation was a nightmare as regards speed.

Mr Jobs announced that OS X had been running on Intel for five years previous to the unveiling of Mac OS X for x86. So if Apple *knew* it had an Intel version under the hood, why would it spend any effort at all persuading game developers to write, or port to PowerPC? Only to shaft them later by announcing OSX86?

I suggest we wait and see. Now that the biggest hardware block has been removed, there should be no reason why fashionable games do not become available on the Mac.

Re:Damned stupid. (2, Interesting)

99BottlesOfBeerInMyF (813746) | more than 8 years ago | (#15481273)

It seems to me as if the author is vastly over-rating the Apple's "ethical" stance on its products. Does anyone for a moment believe that if the US military gave Apple an exclusive contract to, say, supply the servers for, to take a silly example, America's Army, that Apple wouldn't snap it up?

Apple does focus a lot on marketing, more so than most companies. They try hard to control the public perception of their product as a sales tool. This is not the same thing as ethics. Apple does and for a long time has supplied various branches of the military.

Occam's razor suggests that the reason Apple doesn't concentrate on games has been that traditionally, with a different CPU architecture and a fraction of the market, it simply wasn't worth the effort to woo game developers to do a difficult task for which the results would be mediocre at best.

Occam's razor suggest that Apple has not been convinced that concentrating on games is practical or likely to generate as much additional sales as less expensive markets. Processors have little or nothing to do with it.

Add to that the lagging speeds and specs of Apple's consumer level offerings (I refer to the G4 based systems), Apple's actually *couldn't* play fashionable games that well.

Heh, I take it you've never seen the average specs for a gaming machine. The target platform for the average game is well below the capabilities of any mac on the market. Aside from a few graphics powerhouses, most games aim at an average two year old machine. Take a look at the requirements for 2006's top sellers so far. I think you'll be surprised.

Mr Jobs announced that OS X had been running on Intel for five years previous to the unveiling of Mac OS X for x86. So if Apple *knew* it had an Intel version under the hood, why would it spend any effort at all persuading game developers to write, or port to PowerPC? Only to shaft them later by announcing OSX86?

The PPC chip was not holding back gaming on the mac. Optimization for the chip set was a minimal concern. Several industry experts have already testified it mostly amounted to a recompile with a few different options. The cost comes from porting to a new interface and in most cases porting away from MS's proprietary DirectX. Take a look at the major games out there today. Those that develop using OpenGL tend to release for the mac at about the same time as Windows. Think Blizzard and ID. Companies that develop using DirectX (which is completely dependent upon the Windows OS), generally hire a specialty firm to help them port to the Mac and OpenGL. This is a significant expense and thus they usually wait until they know the game is successful before even starting. OpenGL versus DirectX is the single biggest consideration for making Mac gaming lag Windows gaming and has nothing to do with the processor.

I suggest we wait and see. Now that the biggest hardware block has been removed, there should be no reason why fashionable games do not become available on the Mac.

The hardware change will make a difference, but not because companies write for a processor. Intel chips will do one of two things. If Apple builds in a Windows virtualization/reimplementation environment it will let macs run native Windows games and developers will probably do very little differently except be more careful about activation schemes, even though Macs will now play games. If Apple does not build in such technology, many companies will use the WINE technology to make quick and dirty ports, much faster and with less expense, thus shortening the lag time between releases, but also possibly reducing quality.

Author is a little misinformed (5, Interesting)

artemis67 (93453) | more than 8 years ago | (#15481769)

You're absolutely right about that.

There's no evidence that Apple, today, is worried about the Mac being perceived as a toy.

Back in 1984, yes, Steve Jobs was worried about his revolutionary graphical-based system being perceived as a toy, and was famously anti-games at the time (Jobs, himself, does not play computer games). You had to file an application with Apple in order to purchase the Mac software development tools, and include a description of the application(s) you were going to write; and if you said that you were planning to write a game, your application simply did not get approved.

Fast forward about two decades, and you see that Apple and Jobs have no such biases anymore. I remember when Jobs called out John Carmack to demo Quake III at a Macworld keynote, and games have been featured prominently on Apple's website from time to time. Apple has even kept the graphics cards in their systems fairly current over the last seven or eight years.

The problem is not Apple; the problem is that, in the realm of games development, Apple is completely at the mercy of third-party developers to write games for the Mac. And given that the Mac only has around 4% marketshare (give or take), 99.999% of all games get written for Windows first, and very, very few are ported over. Mac-first and Mac-only games are almost non-existent. That's the reality of the marketplace, so it doesn't really make sense for Apple to throw a ton of money at game development when NOBODY buys a Mac to plays games.

I'm absolutely positive that Apple would LOVE to be known as a serious gaming company. Gamers spend BIG BUCKS on their hardware. Maybe now that Apple is selling x86 boxes you'll start to see more emphasis from Apple on gaming hardware, for those gamers that want to dual-boot, but it will never be a primary market for them unless Apple dumps OS X altogether (which ain't happenin).

Disappointing Article (5, Insightful)

wbren (682133) | more than 8 years ago | (#15480982)

First of all, regardless of whether he worked at Apple or not, he read into some decisions the company has made way too much. Trying to rationalize unrelated business moves by fitting them to an anti-gaming philosophy is just ridiculous. I think developer support just isn't there for the Mac. Why isn't it there? Market share. Case closed. I don't think there's some vast conspiracy centering around Steve Jobs and his "concerns about some components of the military and its leadership."

Second, I thought the following was funny:

Computer games, as we've come to know them, are mostly (not always) about aggressive behavior, conflict, battle, wars of power, domination, and sometimes, in the worst cases, some very unwelcome social behavior. To put it bluntly, death and destruction. Apple's public culture appears to celebrate, on the other hand, creation and life. When you have several hundred senior managers at Apple who are most likely married and typically have children, you'll find a culture of affirmation, family, and life.

All games have conflict, even the simplest childrens games. As much as we hate to hear this, the executives at Microsoft are not hedonistic killing machines bent on destruction (OK, except Ballmer if there's a chair around). Heck some of them might even have wives and children, just like those Apple managers who support a "culture of affirmation", whatever that means. I seriously doubt aggressive game content is the reason Apple sucks at games. Suggesting that Apple users want to live on a higher plane of existence where there's not "unwelcome social behavior" or aggression is why non-Mac users get ticked off at you guys.

Finally, Apple likes control. They need and love to manage and control the image of their company. If Apple computers were to become the darling of the gaming industry, then the natural evolution of the worst driving out the best would infect their culture.

If your corporate message can be severely tainted by a video game, you've got bigger problems. When I'm fragging people in UT on my Windows PC, I don't often forget that Microsoft is pushing Office/Vista/World Domination. In fact, I like Windows more because I can play my killing game, my educational/puzzle games, do my word processing, surf the web, etc. I think that's promoting more of a "culture of creation and life" than Apple does by trying to shove their philosophy down people's throats while making it appear trendy.

So Apple doesn't mind supporting game developers, but they just don't want to let outrageous success in gaming cause them to lose control of the Apple message.
And one more "we're better than you" for the road.

Re:Disappointing Article (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15481162)

A "me too" to parent poster.

If they don't care for games, why was this article posted on developer.apple.com this week?
Developing games on Mac OS X... [apple.com]

Re:Disappointing Article (1, Insightful)

nanowired (881497) | more than 8 years ago | (#15482114)

Honostly Apple has never been too honost. They've always talked a bit of BS, proclaiming themselves better than microsoft, when the cold Reality is that they're just as bad, if not worse. Its a highhorse, and all it will take to knock them down a knotch is a few script kiddies deciding its time for the first wave of mac virii.

Fatuous connection (4, Interesting)

anaesthetica (596507) | more than 8 years ago | (#15480989)

This article is just dumb. The author strains to make some sort of connection between gaming and the military-industrial complex, as if not gaming is somehow a "principled" stance against the Pentagon. There's no evidence that Apple specifically avoids gaming. Trotting out the pictures of children in iMovie demos does not count as some sort of evidence that Apple is shaking its fist at a perceived war machine. *Every company* on earth uses pictures of cute children in its advertising. Case-in-point: Lockheed and Boeing and Raytheon use pictures of children in their advertising.

The reality of the situation is that Apple knows its user demographics, it understands the gaming industry, and wasn't going to waste its time promoting something that wasn't going to happen. Apple doesn't sell to hardcore gamers. Apples ran on non-standard hardware using Apple's unique application environments and only had 2-3% market share--no gaming company was going to waste its time with Apple, and Apple wasn't going to waste its time on games. End of story.

This guy is reaching hard for something that's not there, most likely reflecting his own personal biases rather than any insight into Apple's behavior. If Apple wanted to be in gaming, and the market would support Apple being in gaming, they could easily take a position like Nintendo (avoiding gore and focusing on writing as many kid appropriate games as they could).

Gaming != support for military. Moderate article -1 Troll.

Re:Fatuous connection (0, Flamebait)

wbren (682133) | more than 8 years ago | (#15481054)

Lockheed and Boeing and Raytheon use pictures of children in their advertising.
But those are all family companies that only make products to help mankind, and... Doh! Looks like I've fallen victim to clever marketing again!

Re:Fatuous connection (1)

Jerry Rivers (881171) | more than 8 years ago | (#15481409)

"no gaming company was going to waste its time with Apple, and Apple wasn't going to waste its time on games. End of story."

Overly generalized given that there ARE gaming companies making money on mac gaming, some of which are mentioned in the article (and I'll add SOE to that list). While it is true that most gaming companies apparently can't justify the cost for the return, some certainly can and do.

Jobs (1)

Kuvagh (947832) | more than 8 years ago | (#15481013)

Take this with a grain of salt, but I've always heard that Steve Jobs himself isn't particularly fond of games. That may be a factor. Perhaps someone should spin their usefulness to him as productivity-increasing stress relievers. I bet somebody would have a fair chance of turning him on to Spore or something like that. I think that Apple ought to produce a new line of really high quality educational games and offer them to schools at absolute bargain prices... if well-produced, they'd be good for the kids... and it's never too early to start building brand loyalties.

It's not about fun, it's about gaming. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15481117)

You can get some pretty fun games for the Mac, some of which run well enough to entertain, especially with upgraded hardware. That doesn't really matter, though. Gaming isn't about fun, it's about buying whatever people are selling.

It's really frustrating to hear other Mac users disparage the platform and suggest using Windows to play games. Instead of buying games from people who support their favored platforms (and this goes for Linux users too), they jump at the next shiny thing, and will sell their soul for it, because they are a gamer.

The term "gamer" has gained a new meaning that must make Windows game developers wet themselves; it apparently now means a person who has access to every new game available on Windows, and obtains it. Even if you log 15 hours a day at Nethack or even World of Warcraft, you are no gamer. Not only that, but you are no gamer if you don't have the absolute best hardware available this year, or even this season. Doesn't matter if you thought the x800 xt you bought for your G5 was pretty spiffy, you're just kidding yourself; you're no gamer.

These are well-trained consumers. I doubt there is much future in Mac or Linux gaming because of this.

That was so looooong ago (3, Interesting)

Nicolay77 (258497) | more than 8 years ago | (#15481144)

In fact, Apple had this gaming image that was negative for their bussiness. (See the last paragraph of this [folklore.org] )
It was in the times of the Amiga. So they fought hard to avoid being seen in the gaming space.

However, since the times of Doom and Quake (ten years ago), there was a big hardware demand for gaming pcs, and being seen as a gaming platform would have helped sales.

Even now, one of the main buying concerns is "would this computer run my favorite games?".

The lack of games for the mac is more about the game developers not wanting to invest in a small market (they are even going out of the PC market because console sales are so much bigger), than anything Apple had done recently about games.

So, that article is outdated by about 15 years.

Poor Little Puzzle (1)

Judge_Fire (411911) | more than 8 years ago | (#15481244)

The same attitude towards gaming in the early days is also mentioned in this Folklore.org story of Puzzle [folklore.org] , the fun little gadget that shipped with the original Mac.

J

Re:Poor Little Puzzle (1)

Nicolay77 (258497) | more than 8 years ago | (#15481580)

Yeeees...

May be I just found the Alice article I posted when I really was looking for the Puzzle article.

Anyway, both articles from Folklore.org are relevant.

Re:That was so looooong ago (1)

SpinJaunt (847897) | more than 8 years ago | (#15482877)

Even now, one of the main buying concerns is "would this computer run my favorite games?".
For me, it is whether or not it will run my favorite[sic] linux distro or even more preferably a BSD.
</Joke>

Moral high-road? (3, Insightful)

nsmike (920396) | more than 8 years ago | (#15481161)

Sorry, but this article is pure drivel. Since when does being less popular and prevalent in the market equal moral standards? Apple is no different than any other corporation. Give them money and they're happy. The real reason Apple doesn't dive into the gaming market is because Apples don't offer any drastic advantages over PCs in that arena, and until they do, Apple doesn't have enough market share to get the big business of gaming interested in developing a game solely for Macs.

Game Publisher: "Hmm... I can get hundreds of millions by releasing this on PC, or I may hit two or three million by going for the Mac market."

No brainer there.

Re:Moral high-road? (2, Informative)

99BottlesOfBeerInMyF (813746) | more than 8 years ago | (#15481855)

Sorry, but this article is pure drivel.

Agreed.

The real reason Apple doesn't dive into the gaming market is because Apples don't offer any drastic advantages over PCs in that arena, and until they do, Apple doesn't have enough market share to get the big business of gaming interested in developing a game solely for Macs.

Apple, until recently, would need to make a huge investment to get gaming on the mac equal to gaming on the PC. This would be either building dev tools that made games for mac and PC using OpenGL, or an easy way to port DirectX games, and/or buying game companies and rolling their own exclusive titles. More likely, they could partner with Nintendo or Sony to get console games on the Mac. Times, however, are changing.

Game Publisher: "Hmm... I can get hundreds of millions by releasing this on PC, or I may hit two or three million by going for the Mac market." No brainer there.

Actually the choice is, develop portable code that does not rely upon MS's DirectX and reach PCs, macs, and consoles easily while having better quality code and being less beholden to MS, or develop for Direct X, using less talented coders and count on the money that comes in to hire someone else to let us port it to macs and consoles if it is successful.

The former is what most of the best game companies do, like Blizzard and ID. The latter is what cheaper operations, with less certainty of success do. There are a lot more of the latter than the former, although most you never really hear about, since their games end up in the cheap bin.

Now, however, Apple has the OpenSource WINE project as well as several VM technologies to make use of. Additionally, the new Intel chips contain hardware virtualization tech. For a much smaller investment they can provide tools to quickly port Windows software including games, or run them under OS X in a VM at reasonable speeds. Even if Apple does nothing, third parties will certainly provide both of these options. It is just a matter of time and seeing what Apple decides to build in.

Minority group (5, Insightful)

boyfaceddog (788041) | more than 8 years ago | (#15481208)

I know this is hard for all of us to remember, but people who buy PCs to play games on do so because the PC is a multi-function device (email, surfing, recipes, taxes, accounts, etc). Many /.ers buy or build PCs just for gaming and $2000 for a game-machine is not a big deal. This is not true of the majority of PC game players.

I would guess from my exposure to Macs over the years, that most Macs high-end (game friendly) macs are purchased as single-use items for money-making purposes, and low-end macs are purchased for family members of high-end mac users OR because someone somewhere demended a mac for a specific use (University IT depts, school boards, etc).

For the rest of us caught in between high-end mac users and high-end PC gamers, there are the consoles. Consoles provide the high-end game machine without having to justify buying TurboTax to run on it.

We have seen the minority and they is us.

Apple is going for low-hanging fruits... (3, Informative)

PhoenixOne (674466) | more than 8 years ago | (#15481221)

The "Mac isn't a toy" idea may have been true in the 1980s, but then Apple tried Pippin and Game Sprockets.

IMHO, Apple wouldn't mind having a game market but, unlike Microsoft, they are not willing to suffer to get it. The first 2-3 versions of DirectX sucked! The first version of Game Sprockets made more sense than DX3. But Apple gave up when large numbers of game developers didn't immediately switch to Sprockets.

I think now Apple would rather fight for markets that it sees open (i.e. the ones Microsoft doesn't own yet).

Jerk stole my post (4, Insightful)

objekt (232270) | more than 8 years ago | (#15481264)

From the day before on /.
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=187341&cid=154 64790 [slashdot.org]

"Macs are OK for games... ...but when you REALLY want to do some serious work, you need an IBM PC!"

That's what Apple was afraid of hearing back in the '80s an what lead them to ignoring the games market.


He took that and fluffed it out into a complete article! :P

Different fun? (5, Insightful)

Octos (68453) | more than 8 years ago | (#15481424)

if you look at the software that comes with a Mac, you get the picture that Mac users might have a different use for their computers than just blowing things up. Instead of playing games they make moives, take photos, compose music, or podcast for fun.

The no-games cry also applies only to the latest 3D monster games. Nobody complains that they can't play Bejeweled on a Mac; because they can do it just fine. There are tons of great, fun games for the Mac. They just aren't the ones that get all the buzz from the hardcore crowd.

Re:Different fun? (2, Interesting)

halfcuban (972832) | more than 8 years ago | (#15481475)

if you look at the software that comes with a Mac, you get the picture that Mac users might have a different use for their computers than just blowing things up. Instead of playing games they make moives, take photos, compose music, or podcast for fun.
Well what do you know, I run Linux, and I don't use it to just write Perl scripts! I use it for the exact same reasons you said. Except I'm not locked into ridiculous underperforming hardware. You mean the games that sell hundreds of thousands of copies? Those "hardcore" ones? When fraternities have Halo contests and you see people with Greek hats at LAN parties, its hard to argue that its merely the geeky "hardcore" who are somehow buying and playing these games.

Is this guy serious? (5, Interesting)

halfcuban (972832) | more than 8 years ago | (#15481438)

Gaming isn't part of Apple's "grown up" image? You mean the same grown up image that has one actor making fun of another actor whose labelled as a PC? The same image that has dancing silouettes to the latest "hip" music? Are we honestly talking about the same company here?

2. The "Get a Mac" ads say something subtle about power. Recall what I said previously about the two actors representing the computer, not the user. There is some additional, subtle symbolism in those ads that says something about Apple's public (not internal) image of power. The PC, who wears a suit, is the computer that's used as an instrument of power. Having been in federal sales, I can tell you that the U.S. Air Force and the U.S. Navy have embraced Microsoft almost completely. [1] The PC can be taken as an instrument of willfulness and power that shouldn't be but often is abused in that role.


Of course it says something about the users. PC users are boring and staid, and Apple users talk to cute Japanese girls. I also like the subtle hint that Apple's public message is not about power, but its internal dynamic, driven by mini-tyrant Steve Jobs, is all about command and control.

Remember, it's not in Apple's culture to hold people back. They create insanely great tools for people to build whatever their imagination can conjure up. In addition, Apple could try to build the greatest game machine on earth. Silicon Graphics, Inc. (SGI) built those kinds of expensive graphics toys for years. Today, they are in bankruptcy.


This guy is absurd. SGI? SGI got into the spot it did because of shoddy and delayed execution of their transition from their MIPS processor line to Itanium, as well as the general loss of proprietary market of IRIX to Linux. SGI did not build gaming rigs. Alienware does. And last time I checked, Alienware seemed to be doing well enough to get bought out by Dell. So much for "bankruptcy".

So Apple doesn't mind supporting game developers, but they just don't want to let outrageous success in gaming cause them to lose control of the Apple message.


This line is a hoot. Time and time again Apple fan(atics) claim that the reason Apple isn't in x,y,z market is because they're simply too good for it. You really have to question ones investment in a company (and a number of people here have mentioned they own stock in the company) that willfully turns down markets because they're too good for them.

And for the piece de resistance.

Rather than complain, this should be taken as an outward sign of Apple's most serious branding intentions:


Don't complain about Apple selling you underpowered, underwhelming computers, but rather realize how the overpriced MacGuffin you just bought is all about the "branding intentions".

Lest We Forget Bootcamp! (-1, Offtopic)

cyberbian (897119) | more than 8 years ago | (#15481467)

and the opportunity to dual boot XP(lode) on all new Mactel offerings, all of which are sporting DX9 capable cards... trust me, I'm running XP(lode) ONLY on my TPM enabled iMac Intel Core Duo because Apple didn't bother to include the TPM driver for XP(lode) and it's therefore disabled...

Apple isn't wrong very often... (-1, Redundant)

Il128 (467312) | more than 8 years ago | (#15481694)

I don't want to insult anyone or anything but maybe just maybe Apple has a point? Most PC games are either sickeningly violent or skinner boxes. Tetris is and was a great exception to that rule.

Way wrong. (4, Interesting)

TheSkepticalOptimist (898384) | more than 8 years ago | (#15481796)

Apple doesn't want people to perceive their products as toys??????

WTF?

Apple's turnaround began when Steve Jobs came back and release colourful bubble computers called iMac's. These cheesy plastic CRT monitors with embedded Mac's kept Apple from bankruptcy and enabled Apple to develop another entertianment device, the iPod.

Apple followed up with release those clam shell iBook's.

Apple has always had both a Pro line and consumer line of computers. Their G4 PowerMacs were aimed to be clearly professional products ( complete with a professional look and feel along with a professional price tag), but those makes aimed at the average home user were typically colorful and aimed at entertainment.

I don't believe for an instant that Apple perceives themselves as professional level consumer goods and want a reputation for being serious computers. This is the kind of arrogance that Apple fanatics seem to impose on the company.

Currently, Apple has been heavily focused on sleek style, putting computers into the smallest or thinnest possible cases and their color scheme has been metal, white or black. But, simply put, Apple's current focus it to try and market the FUN side of Apple, as those "I am a PC, I am a Mac" commercials are clearly showing. Apple wants you to use your Mac for entertainment value, such as music, movies, video, etc, etc, etc.

The reason why Apple doesn't get into gaming is the kind of dichotomy that has kept this company from reaching TRUE success. Its my fundamental believe that aside from Wanting to be a successful computer company, I think Apple is afraid to be too successful.

Apple has shown time and time again that they have the ability to release a product that everybody wants. But, how is it that Apple only hat 5% of the desktop market? With a superior OS and formerly superior hardware (sorry, Apple's Intel based computers are just fancy PC's, they are not better, just better looking), Apple never was able to capture more then 5% of the market from Wintel. I think for all the marketing hype and grandstanding and Steve Job's whipping Apple fanatics into a frenzy of lust every MacWorld event, Apple doesn't want to be #1 in the computer market. It will mean they will have to move from being a relatively small, personal and committed computer company to some large, aimless and impersonal monstrosity like Microsoft or Dell.

In the end, all Apple has to do to succeed is to simply listen to their consumers. A product developer at Apple need only to launch MacRumors.com or ThinkSecret and find out what people WANT out of Apple. But this is where Apple allows too much of Steve Job's arrogance to affect the company. Steve Jobs doesn't like PDA's, so Apple doesn't have a PDA, yet consumers are screaming for an Apple PDA/Cellphone. Steve Jobs doesn't like Home Theater PC's, yet consumers are screaming for a set-top all-in-wonder box to be the center of their multimedia universe. Steve Jobs apparently thinks gaming is a fad because Apple hasn't focused on gaming, period.

Its Steve Jobs' arrogance the prevents the company from becoming the success that consumers want Apple to become. I mean, it would take nothing for Apple to dominate in gaming. Because Mac's only come with a few video cards and hand picked hardware, game makers for Mac's could focus on bringing game console like performance to the Mac platform. When you consider that the Xbox is an Intel CPU with an nVidia video card, what the heck is the iMac? A PC with a considerably more powerful Intel CPU and nVidia video card then the Xbox. The iMac would kick the Xbox's ass if Apple focused some of its time in making the Mac an excellent gaming platform.

Combine kick ass gaming on a semi-dedicated gaming platform along with all the rest of the bell's and whistles that a Mac can offer, and you would start to see the tide turn in Apple's direction.

The fact that Apple doesn't focus on gaming despite wanting to be an entertainment-centric platform just boasts of the kind of arrogance and strangle hold Steve Jobs has on the company. Sure, he is responsible for saving the company from oblivion and bringing Apple into consumer electronics with the iPod, but Steve Jobs needs to step down from actively directing the company and let someone else take the reigns. Apple has so much potential but I think Steve Jobs keeps it in check because either he isn't ready for it, or simply waits to see if Apple's stock dips a little before releasing another bombshell on the public.

Apple doesn't do anything until Steve Jobs approves, and when you have a company being held by a dictator like Jobs, when everybody BUT Jobs can see what needs to be done to make Apple successful, then its it obvious what Apple's problem is. But as long as the Apple's board of directors are getting paid millions while Jobs is at the helm, the company will be on cruise control.

BTW, the best way to sell a Mac these days is to run Windows on it. I don't think this is a win for Apple, but a win for Microsoft. Apple is pretty much claiming that despite giving the Intel CPU a fun place to call home, you can't really have fun on a Mac unless you run Windows. The fact that Mac's are only selling now to become Wintel boxes should shock and anger any so-called Apple fanboy.

Whats with the rash of articles? (1)

KodeJockey (928302) | more than 8 years ago | (#15482034)

Wasn't this largely addressed by this article? http://apple.slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=06/06/02/ 1611210 [slashdot.org] On that note, apple is not a gaming company. Aspyr and their ilk are the ones who port for the Mac platform. I always find it funny that Apple gets blamed for not producing something that is mainly supported by third-party vendors. As for the hardware not being friendly for games...WTF? The speed of intel hardware combined with superior graphic capability (and that delicious 30" monitor) seem to be perfectly suited to gaming. I think its simple economics: just not enough demand (read as Mac users).

Could Apple go with handhelds/G6 ipod?? (1)

kinesin-x (980246) | more than 8 years ago | (#15482321)

We all know Apple's entry level hardware isn't fast enough to play the latest games. The mini & MacBook only have a GMA950 which is about the same performance as Radeon 9200. However I do think Apple might the option of getting into handheld gaming with the next generation Ipod.
All the rumors are showing a full touch screen video ipod (some faked, others not -who knows??) http://guides.macrumors.com/Gallery_of_Apple_Leaks _and_Prototypes [macrumors.com] with possible talk of bluetooth/some other wifi-ness. Now it's you have played with Nintendo DS, you know that some great games exist - ones that are fun to play due to the touch screen. Itunes would make a great delivery method, bluetooth could make multi-player standard. - Could Apple do it? Would the hardware be useful?? Chip based decoding mp4/mp4/AAC is a little different than providing a GBA..

I Didn't Realize the Onus Was on Apple (1)

griffeymac (625596) | more than 8 years ago | (#15482533)

It seems to me that most games--either for Mac OS or for Windows--are made by third-party vendors (yes, I realize that Microsoft has several game titles of their own). And it also seems to me that the reason there aren't lots of games for Macs is because there isn't that much demand for them. Think about it from a third-party vendor's point of view: Why get into the business of making games for a platform that only has 5% of the market (or however much Apple has at the moment) when there is most certainly more money to be made creating games (or other software) for Windows-based PCs?

Any more it takes a very large investment to create some of these complicated 3D games, and when there is little return, making that investment ends up being a bad business move.

And I can't speak for all Mac users, of course, but that's part of the reason I have multiple machines at home: Macs to do actual work on, and a Windows machine for playing games. :)
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