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Unreal Creator Proclaims PCs are Not For Gaming

CmdrTaco posted more than 6 years ago | from the true-if-you-run-a-mac dept.

PC Games (Games) 705

An anonymous reader writes "TG Daily is running an interesting interview with EPIC founder and Unreal creator Tim Sweeney. Sweeney is anyway very clear about his views on the gaming industry, but it is surprising how sharply he criticizes the PC industry for transforming the PC into a useless gaming machine. He's especially unhappy with Intel, which he says has integrated graphics chipsets that 'just don't work'."

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PCs are for goatse! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22699404)

Goatse Goatse Goatse [twofo.co.uk]

You nerds love it.

I'm not worried, because... (3, Insightful)

PC and Sony Fanboy (1248258) | more than 6 years ago | (#22699410)

There aren't many GOOD pc games coming out lately. So, if the manufacturers drop the ball on hardware ... it doesn't REALLY matter, because the software developers aren't doing much better either.

I don't think that it is a downward spiral, either - software companies aren't focusing on consoles because the PC hardware isn't great ... they're focusing on consoles because there is more money in consoles!

Re:I'm not worried, because... (4, Insightful)

DuncanE (35734) | more than 6 years ago | (#22699500)

Personally I find that only games that require a mouse are worth playing on a PC now anyway. And I dont include FPS's in that either. So really I only play RTS's on the PC, but I would happily play them on a console and then wouldnt have to worry about driver issues and bugs due to odd hardware conflicts.

Re:I'm not worried, because... (5, Interesting)

Brian Gordon (987471) | more than 6 years ago | (#22699628)

Oh please. I don't understand you console jockeys at all- FPS can. not. be played on a controller. None of them can. Halo came somewhat close to playability, but anyone who ever seriously played the terrible PC port of one of the first two Haloes can attest that without the added challenge of dealing with a joystick input, the game is ridiculously easy, and multiplayer is a joke- anyone with moderate railgun skill can just crank up their resolution, grab a sniper rifle, and score nonstop headshots from a mile away. Sorry Wii, the input should be seamless and not the only thing that makes a game challenging. The mouse is obviously the easier input device for FPS, so it alone should be used. Ever wonder why the console versions of multipleyer FPS can never play with the PC versions of the same game? The first time they tried that was with Quake 3 on the dreamcast and on the PC. Even if you've never played the game yourself, you know the reputation- ridiculously fast amphetamine-twitch gameplay. The PC players absolutely curb stomped the dreamcast players until they were drowning in the blood pouring out their eyes.. it was a huge joke at the time because the dreamcast players just couldn't even score a kill- you'd look at the scoreboard and it would be like naturally the top half of the scoreboard is reserved for PC players, the bottom half for dreamcast players.. the controller just sucks that much.

Re:I'm not worried, because... (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22699750)

Did you get a free vagina with that whiny attitude?

Re:I'm not worried, because... (5, Informative)

Telvin_3d (855514) | more than 6 years ago | (#22699866)

regarding the Wii; It's taking a while for the various companies to figure the quirks of the new control scheme. However, some are getting there. Drop a few dollars and rent Resident Evil or Metroid for the Wii for a weekend. I've seen it happen with a half dozen people now where they bitch about the controls for a hour and then everything clicks and away they go.

Re:I'm not worried, because... (1, Interesting)

sqldr (838964) | more than 6 years ago | (#22699962)

FPS can. not. be played on a controller.

I finished Resistance: Fall of man on my ps3 last month. Absolutely brilliant game. Ok, so the controller was a bit clumsy, but did that stop me having fun? No. It also enabled me to play the game slouched on a sofa, rather than sitting bolt upright at a PC desk with a bottle of mountain dew and a half eaten pizza for sustenance.

"The PC players absolutely curb stomped the dreamcast players until they were drowning in the blood pouring out their eyes"

Well done. Give yourself a pat on the back, and slurp some more of that mountain dew.

The PC is fundamentally flawed by inconsistent drivers, latency, incompatibility, and simply by being a moving target. How fast is a PC? What graphics chipset does a PC have? A developer has to make the game tweakable, so that it works on everyone's PC and the people with the lithium-cooled turbofan graphics card can stop moaning that it doesn't play at 15241x19841 in 64 bit colour. Alternately, they could just focus it and optimise it for the same graphics chip everywhere and get the absolute best out of it.

Last Ninja 2 on my C64 was a far better game than daikatana, running on a far more powerful machine. Go figure.

Re:I'm not worried, because... (2, Insightful)

Volante3192 (953645) | more than 6 years ago | (#22699976)

FPS's can be played with a controller, but you have to add an autolock feature (i.e., Metroid Prime) which seriously drops the difficulty level.

Multiplayer, an autolock is akin to cheating, even if it's game supplied, so sorta screwed there.

Re:I'm not worried, because... (1)

twoboxen (1111241) | more than 6 years ago | (#22700142)

I think you mean "e.g.", not "i.e."

Re:I'm not worried, because... (5, Insightful)

reidconti (219106) | more than 6 years ago | (#22699988)

Maybe we care more about having fun than about worrying about optimum input devices, highest possible mouse resolution, upgrading our video cards every 6 months, and so on. All to end up with a "gaming" PC that makes too much noise and crashes all the time (or is down for repairs).

I like to come home, flip on my 360, know it'll work (joke's on me I guess) and play games for an hour or two.. then put it away and go on with my life. It's nice to have a system that just does what it's supposed to do. The game makers know what hardware I'll be using and optimize the game for it. Perfect.

Go ahead, tar and feather me as a Mac user, but I work with computers all day; the last thing I want to do is come home and mess with one too. I love my job, but home time is relax time.

Re:I'm not worried, because... (1)

CheeseEatingBulldog (703915) | more than 6 years ago | (#22700048)

Sorry but the WII is awesome as an fps platform, way better than keyboard and mouse.

Re:I'm not worried, because... (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22700154)

Dear Sir, I'm sorry but you appear to have wedged your head in your ass.

This kind of attitude is exactly why everyone except hardcore PC gamers, /really hate/ hardcore PC gamers.

Re:I'm not worried, because... (2, Informative)

xkhaozx (978974) | more than 6 years ago | (#22700208)

I won't argue with the fact that using a mouse for aiming has its advantages over a controller, but to say that FPS's _cannot_ be played on a controller?? That is completely ridiculous, especially given the success of the halo series. The thing is, the controller has a number of other advantages. The game controller is designed so that a number of buttons can be easily reached and used. The buttons themselves are even placed in certain location purposely to create more natural controls for the game (Ie, triggers for shooting guns). For games that actually aren't just run around and shoot things (Ie, Quake, CS), having the controller for these games becomes quite useful. Take a look at Halo 3. The controller makes the system of dual guns so much easier to use. You can easily switch individual weapons easily with controller. With the keyboard, once you start adding all the different functionality, the control system becomes very clunky and unintuitive. Games like Bioshock are made easier as well through the controller. RTS is the only type of game I would seriously limit to mouse-keyboard.

Re:I'm not worried, because... (3, Insightful)

Brian Gordon (987471) | more than 6 years ago | (#22699512)

Not many good pc games coming out? Who cares about new games when you have such a massive library of games available? Just have to have your madden 09? Then go away. Like a good game despite Windows 95 graphics? Break out Chip's Challenge [therhogue.com] and see if you still remember how to beat it. Craving something new? How about Steam's library, which is massive and is actually priced reasonably unlike any console game at all. And has free mods for the more popular games that are good for more play hours than the game itself-- how many people have bought Half-Life 2 Deathmatch just so they they can play SourceForts, and never even launched HL2DM? How about Insurgency [insmod.net] ? PC gaming is dead? Does netcraft confirm it?

Re:I'm not worried, because... (2, Informative)

PC and Sony Fanboy (1248258) | more than 6 years ago | (#22699538)

Thats my point - who cares if PC hardware isn't on par with consoles - there aren't any games coming out with those requirements, so stick to the old ones!

Re:I'm not worried, because... (4, Interesting)

Brian Gordon (987471) | more than 6 years ago | (#22699736)

And who said PC hardware isn't on par with consoles? Have you seen those new NVIDIA cards? From wikipedia [wikipedia.org] :

Two 65nm process GPUs, with 256 total Stream Processors (128 per PCB) Supports Quad SLI. 1 GiB memory framebuffer, possibly up to 2 GiB [this is insane 2ghz GDDR3 memory] 128 GB/s memory bandwidth

Re:I'm not worried, because... (1)

falcon5768 (629591) | more than 6 years ago | (#22699802)

And how much is the chip? If its like most chips its probably around the cost of a console which leads to the "why bother?"

The more telling statistic is numbers sold. A PC game that breaks 300-400 thousand is considered a hit. A console game that barely breaks that though is considered lukewarm at best when most games hit 1-2 million these days.

Re:I'm not worried, because... (1)

ericartman (955413) | more than 6 years ago | (#22700242)

Let see 20 million people playing WoW, which is not ported to any console, guess its a hit. When Burning Crusade came out I went to the release line up. Being almost 60 I was ready for the hordes of kids, surprisingly most people were closer to my age than teens. BTW most of us got into hardware discussions while in line and the money being spent by the older generation in line was amazing. My 8800GTX Nvidea video board was around the norm.

Cart

Re:I'm not worried, because... (2, Funny)

sm62704 (957197) | more than 6 years ago | (#22700040)

There aren't many GOOD pc games coming out lately.

That's Tim's fault, isn't it?

Unreal Tourniment is a game? (1)

Morromist (1207276) | more than 6 years ago | (#22700106)

Shocking.

But Its clear that when Tim Sweeney talks about games and I talk about games we are not talking about the same thing.
Unreal sucks; Its not fun; and only the creeps with super expensive systems ever want to play it at lan parties.

Why the hell do EA men and Sweeney make the crapiest games and then complain about the gaming market?

If Unreal is the apogee of games then the computer really is a useless machine - but I'll stick to my Dwarf Fortress and Starcraft, reveling in my self defined glory, disdainful of anything geared to run with dual core machines.

Hardware is a factor (1)

Midnight Thunder (17205) | more than 6 years ago | (#22700248)

There aren't many GOOD pc games coming out lately. So, if the manufacturers drop the ball on hardware ... it doesn't REALLY matter, because the software developers aren't doing much better either.

Then again crappy integrated graphics is not going to help much. I wanted to do some non-gaming 3D and I wa lucky to get some of the 3D working on one computer. This was a month old Dell Latitude using an integrated Intel chipset. Before I went the unoffical route the provided Dell driver could barely do OpenGL 1.0, and then with the official driver it could do OpenGL 1.5, but performance sucked big time. This is why if I choose a computer I make sure it has at least an ATI or Nvidia chipset, but unfortunately not everybody understands the importance here.

There is only so much a programmer can do if the hardware just doesn't support what they want to do.

I have spoken to a number of games developers and one advantage for them with consoles, is that they are relatively easy to develop for, since they aren't a moving target which it comes to configuration.

If you are spending a $1000 USD on a computer then it better have the ability to do OpenGL 2.0 well-ish.

Judging from the recent Unreal sales numbers (1)

elrous0 (869638) | more than 6 years ago | (#22699420)

I'd say that PC have decided that their PC's are certainly not for YOUR game.

Re:Judging from the recent Unreal sales numbers (5, Insightful)

Lumpy (12016) | more than 6 years ago | (#22699616)

Have you even tried to play Unreal III? It takes far more PC than most people have. and that same problem plagued ID on it's last 2 releases for almost 2 years. Hell I know people that STILL dont have a pc capable of running Doom III at any playable speeds. Gaming companies are killing themselves. They are selling games that require a 4ghz dual core, 4 gig ram, and a $500.00 video card. While the world is happy as hell with their 3 year old Pentium 4 3ghz running that $45.00 Geforce 6600 card.

you cant sell a crapload of games that runs on hardware that most people dont have.

Re:Judging from the recent Unreal sales numbers (1)

SD-Arcadia (1146999) | more than 6 years ago | (#22699826)

Agreed. That's why I only play games that are at least 2 years old and I am happy. The communities are still there and the games are just as good. Trying to keep up with the latest and greatest is just too expensive.

Re:Judging from the recent Unreal sales numbers (1)

MightyYar (622222) | more than 6 years ago | (#22699884)

From the article, their development rig:

My work computers are Dell workstations. Currently, I have a dual-CPU setup, dual-quad cores for a total of eight cores, and 16 GB of memory. We at Epic tend to go to the high-end of things. Until recently, we used to buy high-end consumer PCs, simply because they tend to deliver the best performance. However, as time goes by, we constantly run into stability problems with CPUs and graphics, so we decided to switch to workstations. We just need very, very stable computers and they perform very well.
Price that one out and see why you can't get stuff to run on a $400 Dell :)

Re:Judging from the recent Unreal sales numbers (4, Interesting)

MORB (793798) | more than 6 years ago | (#22699974)

That's twice that someone from epic say pc gaming is dead. I think that's because they have sour grapes that UT3 sales failed.

The problem is that they failed on many points:

1. They shouldn't have released an unfinished games to meet seasonal sales, because in the end they missed much more than just christmas 07 - they made people ignore the game altogether.

2. When you release a primarily multiplayer game with the idea that it's third parties who'll host most of the servers, you have dedicated linus server binary available on the release day. On release day people had to host servers on windows with a retail CD in the drive for fuck's sake.

3. When you release a successor to ut2004 that had tons of maps and mostly the same gameplay and game mechanics (minus the bugs and unfinished features of ut3 like spectating), don't expect people to upgrade just for the visuals - especially since ut2004 can run so well on today's machines.

4. And they should have listened to complains and answered them on their forums instead of deleting any post suggesting ut3 is far from a perfect game in the hope that other potential buyers wouldn't otherwise find out (how stupid can those PR fucks be?). That or just don't have forums at all.

Intel doesn't work? (1)

Ant P. (974313) | more than 6 years ago | (#22699444)

i915 works fine for me; runs compiz and plays video without blinking. It's a bit lacking in other areas... but PCs aren't supposed to be game machines now, are they?

Re:Intel doesn't work? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22699502)

Intel is catering to the 99% of the market that doesn't give a shit about playing games.

Re:Intel doesn't work? (1)

BrentH (1154987) | more than 6 years ago | (#22699714)

I thought a PC was a general purpose machine, a device that did whatever I want to do with it. Apart from no games to write home about from Epic the last few years, it even manages games pretty well.

Re:Intel doesn't work? (1)

Cutie Pi (588366) | more than 6 years ago | (#22700224)

Offtopic: I have Ubuntu running on a 915G system and while the compiz and video seem to work well, browsing with Firefox feels like I'm running a 100% CPU process in the background. The page scrolls are jerky and you can forget about any Flash content. My daugther likes to play Flash games on sites like noggin.com and they are unplayable on Linux. Meanwhile, they are perfectly smooth on Windows. This is the only reason I still have Windows installed on the machine.

Care to share any Xorg settings that might help?

In other news.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22699468)

Hitler is accusing dictators of killing "inferior races". Film at 11.

TFA Clarification (5, Informative)

GWLlosa (800011) | more than 6 years ago | (#22699472)

He's not saying that the PC is not a gaming platform, or that it shouldn't be. He's saying that there are 'high-end' PCs that can play games, and 'low-end' PCs that can't, and the gap between them is large and transparent to the average consumer (who doesn't realize that buying a PC with "Integrated Extreme Graphics" is the same thing as buying a PC that "can't play modern games").

Re:TFA Clarification (5, Insightful)

iainl (136759) | more than 6 years ago | (#22699528)

But, as ever with Epic staff, he seems to labour under the frankly ludicrous idea that the solution is to stop home and business users who don't need an 8800 from buying anything slower.

If he's not able to label his game box clearly enough as needing a £300 graphics card, that's his problem, not Intel's. They make chipsets that are perfectly good enough to accelerate Aero Glass, and there are plenty of consumers that only need that.

Re:TFA Clarification (2, Interesting)

daveime (1253762) | more than 6 years ago | (#22699640)

Amen to that ... I'm so tired of buying games for my 10 year old, then having to disappoint her when it won't install because it doesn support pixelshader 1.N, and 10^27 polygons per second etc ... perhaps it's time for them to realise that I don't want to buy a new graphics card every 3 months just because they are too lazy to put anything in code anymore and rely solely on the GPU functions. DOOM was a cracking game, and works on everything, even Intel integrated chipsets ... why can't they follow that model for success ?

Re:TFA Clarification (4, Insightful)

p0tat03 (985078) | more than 6 years ago | (#22699894)

Because you, the consumer, demand flashier and better graphics. Not to mention that the level of graphics we're talking about is *impossible* to implement on CPU - the GPU trounces your CPU's performance many times over for matrix math and other calculations.

Scalability is certainly a problem that game developers face - your game should look fairly decent even on a relatively old card, but PC gaming (especially of the 3D graphics variety) has always been an enthusiast thing. If you're not willing to buy a new $200 video card every year or so, you have no hope of keeping up.

I object to your description of game devs as "lazy". The usage of the GPU is a matter of necessity, and it's not easy either. Game developers are not taking the lazy way out by "not writing code" (they are), and relying in GPU functions - what does that mean anyway? Do you think there's a magical "awesome graphics" API on your graphics card that we can call to make things shiny? The kind of work we do on the card (shaders) is sometimes a LOT more complex than what we do on the CPU.

Oh, and DOOM works fine on integrated chipsets because... *drumroll* it doesn't use it! All your 3D work is done on-CPU, and I'm sorry to say that as fast as our CPUs have gotten, they are FAR from fast enough to power all of the pretty graphics you're used to seeing. We are, what, 100 times faster than the CPUs of the DOOM era? But our performance needs for games have progressed leaps and bounds beyond that.

I'm so tired of buying games for my 10 year old, then having to disappoint her when it won't install because it doesn support pixelshader 1.N, and 10^27 polygons per second etc

Read the requirements on the box! Every PC game I've ever bought has been *perfectly* clear about its video card requirements up front. After all, PC developers don't want pissed off consumers any more than you like getting disappointed when a game won't run. And seriously, if you're buying things like Lego Star Wars for your child, anything higher than a GeForce 6600 will run it buttery smooth, and that's a $50-100 card these days.

Honestly speaking, IMHO PC devs have been doing a good job with scalability. The only game recently that required a massive upgrade just to play was Crysis, everything else (Portal, TF2, C&C3, etc.) scales VERY well down to some downright low-end hardware.

Re:TFA Clarification (1)

daveime (1253762) | more than 6 years ago | (#22700190)

Read the requirements on the box! Every PC game I've ever bought has been *perfectly* clear about its video card requirements up front. After all, PC developers don't want pissed off consumers any more than you like getting disappointed when a game won't run. And seriously, if you're buying things like Lego Star Wars for your child, anything higher than a GeForce 6600 will run it buttery smooth, and that's a $50-100 card these days. Ah you mean the statutory :- Windows Operating System Direct x9.0 1GHZ Processor or better 512MB RAM 2GB Hard Disk Space CD-ROM Mouse Soundblaster Compatible Soundcard That appears on the majority of the boxes ? Then you get home, spend an hour installing the N CD's, click the magical icon and nothing happens except some Illegal Instruction at x00FC45e7 dialog. Only then of course, are you able to find the file called "readme.txt" on the CD, which actually describes the REAL requirements for the game, suitable graphics cards, issues with pixel shader 1.N that mean it won't run with older graphics cards etc. Regardless of whatever is said on the box, the readme.txt file invariably tells a fuller story. I'm not taking issue with your point about "me demanding better and better graphics" ... who wouldn't want that ? BUT, if my "antiquated" PC with it's three month old graphic card isn't up to the job, it would be nice if I could tell the game to use a lower res, lower detail mode that would work ... the majority of the latest games I've bought (and subsequently taken back), can't even get past the splash screen, never mind to the configuration menu. ANY game that doesn't allow that has been coded in a "lazy" manner ... the ethos of the producer being, yout must have this, or you are having nothing. And more and more these days, this is sadly the case.

Re:TFA Clarification (1)

Ross D Anderson (1020653) | more than 6 years ago | (#22700008)

You may have had a point right up until you used DOOM as an example... It's 15 years old for christ's sake, so damn straight it should run on everything, it even runs on my mp3 player, but you can't exactly claim it's the pinnacle of graphics at this point in time can you? Besides, even DOOM needed a comparatively "fast" computer for the time. Maybe it's time to realise that either you should stick to games from pre-2000 or splash out on a upgrade.

Re:TFA Clarification (3, Interesting)

MightyYar (622222) | more than 6 years ago | (#22699800)

You nailed it. Furthermore, his message is very confusing:

You pay twice as much money for 30% more performance... That is just not right.
Fair enough, but then a few questions later:

The biggest problem in this space right now is that you cannot go and design a game for a high end PC and downscale it to mainstream PCs. The performance difference between high-end and low-end PC is something like 100x.
I mean, I get what he is trying to say, but it's not a very consistent message. He's just spouting facts that support his flawed argument that everyone else should be concerned about how hard it is for him to design a game.

He also doesn't consider reality:

A PC should be an out-of-the-box workable gaming platform.
So the interviewer then asks "what about notebooks?":

There is no room to put a fast GPU into that compact form.
So now he wants EVERY computer to be an out-of-the-box workable gaming platform... well, except for 50% of them. So apparently portability is an acceptable trade-off, but cost is not?

He also makes this odd statement regarding Intel's integrated graphics:

They're not faster now than they have been at any time in the past.
Weird thing to say, since integrated graphics seem much, much better to me. In the bad old days integrated graphics meant watching the windows redraw... if you were lucky you got some 2d acceleration. Now you can actually run in 3d. I'm presuming that he means they aren't faster in relative terms - which is probably true.

By the way, gamers:

My work computers are Dell workstations. Currently, I have a dual-CPU setup, dual-quad cores for a total of eight cores, and 16 GB of memory. We at Epic tend to go to the high-end of things. Until recently, we used to buy high-end consumer PCs, simply because they tend to deliver the best performance. However, as time goes by, we constantly run into stability problems with CPUs and graphics, so we decided to switch to workstations. We just need very, very stable computers and they perform very well.
I think that it is very interesting that he does not try to use super high-end gear. It really tells you where the sweet spot is for gaming - might as well use the gear that the developers do.

Laptops can be underpowered like the DS and PSP (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 6 years ago | (#22700014)

He also doesn't consider reality:

A PC should be an out-of-the-box workable gaming platform.
So the interviewer then asks "what about notebooks?":

There is no room to put a fast GPU into that compact form.
So now he wants EVERY computer to be an out-of-the-box workable gaming platform... well, except for 50% of them. So apparently portability is an acceptable trade-off, but cost is not?
I think he sees laptops as analogous to handheld game systems. Nintendo's GameCube (previous generation console) is much more powerful than Nintendo DS (current generation handheld). Likewise with Sony's PlayStation 2 and PSP, and Microsoft's Xbox and Pocket PC.[1] Laptops are supposed to run games designed for weaker graphics hardware; that's part of the tradeoff for mobility.

It really tells you where the sweet spot is for gaming - might as well use the gear that the developers do.

Which would be consistent with the rest of the article: With the consoles, end users are guaranteed to use "the gear that the developers do".

[1] Yes, I know Windows Mobile isn't marketed as a video gaming platform, but until some sort of Xboy comes out, it's the only one Microsoft has.

Re:Laptops can be underpowered like the DS and PSP (2, Insightful)

MightyYar (622222) | more than 6 years ago | (#22700250)

I think he sees laptops as analogous to handheld game systems.
It is, and that is an excellent point. What I don't understand is why he is willing to see portability as an acceptable reason to trade off performance, but cost is not... All he has to do is design a low-end version of his game - no different then making one for the DS or one of the consoles. If he doesn't do it and there really is the market he seems to think there is, one of his competitors will be happy to eat his lunch.

Which would be consistent with the rest of the article: With the consoles, end users are guaranteed to use "the gear that the developers do".
Then his developers need to go out and buy some low-end Dell machines. They'll never sell stuff developed on a 16GB RAM dual-quad-core $2000 workstation to folks running the 3-year-old low-end P4. He needs to accept that the market is stratified and develop a laptop version of his games. People aren't going to spend an extra $50 on a better graphics chip just so his development process can be slightly easier.

You're way off the mark (4, Interesting)

Nicolas MONNET (4727) | more than 6 years ago | (#22699840)

I just bought a new motherboard with integrated Intel GMA3100 graphics. I ended up buying a low end Nvidia 8400 for 40 EUROS because it sucked so much. The Intel can barely run Google Earth. It runs Quake3 worse than a 6 year old Geforce. The 8400 runs ET:QW at 30 fps @ 1680x1050, medium-low settings with shadows disabled. That's not £300, just £30, and it's capable of running recent games decently.
So yeah, the guy's right, Intel's graphics adaptors are terrible. I don't know about the X3xxx series, they're supposed to be much better, but I wouldn't count on it.

* OH FOR FUCK'S SAKE /. still can't display the EURO sign, what the fuck is wrong with you people? *

Re:You're way off the mark (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22699908)

Right on. I just built a computer for my cousin and gave him a 30 dollar ATI gfx card from newegg (X700) instead of sticking him with that integrated crap -- he can now enjoy HL2 and other games released recently at 60 frames per second instead of SIX. =X

Re:TFA Clarification (1)

Kamokazi (1080091) | more than 6 years ago | (#22700240)

Most modern games will actually run QUITE well on a $100 graphics card (and you can get 8800 series cards for $200 now, $600 is absurd and you deserve to be exploited if you pay that much). The 8600GT does wonders, and can be thrown in most $400 desktops for very respectable game performance.

I'm not saying put those cards in the $400 desktops by default...I think the problem is people buy $800-1000 PCs (or slightly more expensive laptops) with 'Intel Extreme Graphics', that could, at very little extra cost, have a halfway decent video card in them. (Or they could at least make sub-$1000 'Gaming' PCs and NOT exploit them by putting crappy $40 video cards in SLI) Fortunately Windows Vista (yes, I'm actually going to complement it here), has a rating for Gaming Graphics performance, which goes a long way to help this (if people start checking it). I've talked to quite a few people that have tried gaming on their PC but got frustrated because the game couldn't run. For them to have an option when they walk into a store would be quite nice.

He's not even saying that (1)

Chrisq (894406) | more than 6 years ago | (#22699676)

What he is saying is that the PCs are no longer a common platform. There are games for low-end PCs and games for high-end PCs, but not ones that scale to both. From TFA:

...we would just have to design two completely different games. One for low-end and one for high-end. That is actually happening on PCs: You have really low-end games with little hardware requirements, like Maple Story. That is a $100 million-a-year business. Kids are addicted to those games, they pay real money to buy [virtual] items within the game and the game.

In other words, PCs are good for games, but you need to know what your PC will run!

Re:TFA Clarification (1)

Rooked_One (591287) | more than 6 years ago | (#22699928)

This is where I give the company I work for some props (as far as comsumer sales goes)...

They ask what sort of games are played and tell them what they won't and will be able to play, and recommend a non-integrated graphics card when applicable.

Also, I get to see the new *beastly* machines before they come out ....... And yes - I want that dual 9800 GTX watercooled setup which the public can see tomorrow (i think?) - I dunwanna pay 6,500 dollars though!!

RTS (2, Insightful)

hansamurai (907719) | more than 6 years ago | (#22699488)

I really believe the last bastion of PC gaming lies in real time strategy games, a genre that essentially requires at least a mouse. I guess many die hards would say the same about first person shooters, but I am comfortable playing with either a mouse or controller, and ever since Halo came out back in 2001, the FPS scene has been migrating to the consoles at a pretty quick rate. The PC will always have Counterstrike, but when it gets pretty popular console games such as Gears of War a year after their console release, you can tell that times have changed.

But yeah, real time strategy games, I don't think we'll ever a decent port of say Starcraft 2 to the consoles, but I suppose if anyone can pull it off, Blizzard can.

I'm not really sure if PC games losing to consoles is entirely a bad thing, I think people are just fed up with trying to keep their system up to date with hardware, nasty CD protection schemes that kill their drives, and console ports that can play just as well and in the comfort of their living room.

Why not touch screen RTS? (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 6 years ago | (#22699624)

I really believe the last bastion of PC gaming lies in real time strategy games, a genre that essentially requires at least a mouse.
Do real-time war sims require a mouse, or do they work well with a DS touch screen, a Pocket PC touch screen, a GP2X F-200 touch screen, or a Wii Remote?

I'm not really sure if PC games losing to consoles is entirely a bad thing
It is. Independent developers have less access to the consoles by far than they do to the Windows platform due to the lockout chip business model adopted by all three major console manufacturers.

Re:Why not touch screen RTS? (1)

theheadlessrabbit (1022587) | more than 6 years ago | (#22699796)

Do real-time war sims require a mouse, or do they work well with a DS touch screen
if you have a DS and an M3DS simply or R4DS card, you should look up "a touch of war" a simple homebrew touch-screen controlled RTS.
its a little buggy and limited to only 4 units, but it works quite well. with a more powerful system, a touch screen RTS would be an enjoyable experience.

I might have to go out and buy a tablet PC now and crank out some old command and conquer disks and see how it goes.
hopefully i have better luck than i did trying to run WoW on a Wacom tablet.

Lockout chip business model (2, Insightful)

tepples (727027) | more than 6 years ago | (#22700162)

Do real-time war sims require a mouse, or do they work well with a DS touch screen
if you have a DS and an M3DS simply or R4DS card, you should look up "a touch of war" a simple homebrew touch-screen controlled RTS.
Which brings me to the next point. The console makers have preferred to lock out smaller developers rather than embrace them. Once every generation, at least one console maker sues retailers that carry some product that allows homebrew, and at least one console maker continuously updates newly manufactured consoles with code that blocks the exploits that homebrew uses to boot without the console maker's digital signature. With PCs and PDAs, independent developers and players of their games don't run nearly as much of a risk of losing their hardware supply channels as they do with the major game consoles and handhelds.

Re:Why not touch screen RTS? (1)

hansamurai (907719) | more than 6 years ago | (#22699868)

I recently played FFXII: Revenant Wings on the DS which is a real time strategy game. I honestly didn't think it worked that well, but the game could have used more shortcuts for assigning units to certain buttons and creating groups more effectively. Review here [beyondthefirsthour.com] if you're interested.

Re:RTS (1)

Machtyn (759119) | more than 6 years ago | (#22699682)

There are several very important advantages to PC gaming over the consoles.
  • User input. There are just more options.
  • Expandability. First person shooters, real-time strategy, role-playing, sims (flight, car, etc), and more all gain major replayability due to easy expandability. Granted, consoles are making huge inroads, but their systems are still pretty tightly closed with a high startup cost for starting development. (Still, consoles are starting to break-down this feature, too. Still, PCs have the greater advantage here.
  • Better hardware. You can always throw in a new (or extra) graphics card (relatively inexpensive) or more memory (cheap) in three years and bring your PC up to spec for the latest games. You have to buy a whole new console system at $400-$600 every three years.

The (sorta) myth of upgradeability (3, Insightful)

JSBiff (87824) | more than 6 years ago | (#22700016)

"Better hardware. You can always throw in a new (or extra) graphics card (relatively inexpensive) or more memory (cheap) in three years and bring your PC up to spec for the latest games. You have to buy a whole new console system at $400-$600 every three years."

That's sorta true. . . but not so much. . .

  • You can't upgrade the CPU (usually) without upgrading the mobo (that is, while you might be able to upgrade to a slightly faster CPU, usually you can't upgrade to the next generation of CPU which gives the big performance gains vs. the incremental upgrade from 3.0 to 3.2 GHz)
  • You might be able to upgrade the graphics card, once; about every 2-3 generations of graphics cards and mobos use a new physical interface (i.e. the recent transition from AGP to PCI-X), which requires a new Mobo
  • You can upgrade the amount of ram, but ram is constantly getting faster, and to use the faster ram requires a new mobo
  • Then the new Mobo might possibly require you to get a new hard drive (if, e.g. it supports only SATA, and not PATA. . . or it supports the same physical interface standard, but at a slower speed, e.g. the transitions over the years from 33Mbit/s to 66 to 100 and beyond) - yes, you could by a PCI card to provide the old interface, but at that point it might make sense to use the money instead to get a new hard drive (so that the HD isn't a performance bottleneck in your upgraded system.
  • Then when you upgrade the Mobo, so that you can upgrade everything else, the new mobo might require a new case and power supply, or other new components (almost certainly it requires new RAM, but you were planning to buy that anyhow)


By the time you finish upgrading your computer, you've spent enough money that it might have made more sense to by a medium-spec next gen machine, instead of trying to upgrade your last-gen machine to high-spec (for that generation). Because the medium spec machine will likely be more powerful than the high-spec last-gen machine. Or, you have, really, bought a new computer, one part at a time, anyhow, and probably spent $400-$600, at least, to do it.

Re:RTS (1)

joebooty (967881) | more than 6 years ago | (#22699700)

With the consoles all being networked now the only thing that makes those games so good on the PC is the mouse and keyboard.

Those games are also tend to have fairly complicated interfaces that would not compress well to a standard TV resolution but for HD sets it would be no problem.

Starcraft2 will be out in the semi-near future. It will be interesting to see the quality of the console ports for it.

Re:RTS (1)

DdJ (10790) | more than 6 years ago | (#22700068)

1) "Halo" is the game that changed many peoples' minds about this with regard to FPS games. It is going to be very interesting to see whether "Halo Wars" can do the same for RTS games. It's due out this year. I'm not very interested in it myself, but I will be watching the market's reaction to it.

2) More and more people are hooking up a mouse and keyboard to their consoles anyway. All the current-gen consoles have USB ports and support keyboards. I've got a Logitech wireless keyboard/mouse attached to my XB360. I used to attach a keyboard and mouse to my PS2 and play FPS games with them -- I first hooked up the keyboard/mouse to the PS2 in order to play Deus Ex on it, and it worked. Even if RTS games are strongly enhanced via the use of the mouse, there's nothing stopping developers from using the mouse (or just about any other input mechanism that works on a PC) on consoles. Heck, I consider my XB360 to have more input options -- those "big button pads" for the XB360 version of "Scene It!" communicate with the console via IR, and few of the computers in my house have IR receivers (only some of my portables do).

Many good points, but I don't quite agree (5, Insightful)

amazeofdeath (1102843) | more than 6 years ago | (#22699490)

For example:

[...] a problem that we have today, and that is the fact that every PC should have a decent graphics card.
Why would a computer meant for browsing the Internet and reading email need a separate graphics card?

Re:Many good points, but I don't quite agree (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22699532)

So that game developers can make more money? That's my guess.

Re:Many good points, but I don't quite agree (1)

amazeofdeath (1102843) | more than 6 years ago | (#22699562)

If the computer is not used for gaming, do you think the user would suddenly start buying games if there was a separate graphics in the computer?

Re:Many good points, but I don't quite agree (1)

cbart387 (1192883) | more than 6 years ago | (#22699596)

earlier in his article ...

Retail stores like Best Buy are selling PC games and PCs with integrated graphics at the same time and they are not talking about the difference [to more capable gaming PCs]. Those machines are good for e-mail, web browsing, watching video. But as far as games go, those machines are just not adequate.
I agree with you. I don't play games anymore (unless it's with friends on a console). They just don't interest me, so why should I spend money on a computer with a good graphics card if I won't use it. It seems like he's under the assumption that everyone plays videogames. Probably that's true within the people he hangs out around. I would say he needs to get out more.

Re:Many good points, but I don't quite agree (1)

Threni (635302) | more than 6 years ago | (#22699696)

> why should I spend money on a computer with a good graphics card if I won't use it.

Exactly. I have an Intel on-board graphics system. My motherboard cost £60 or so, and has a bunch of stuff built in, including sound and graphics. People like him think nothing of spending £300+ on a graphics card so it can play the next 8 months games reasonably well, before they have to start turning the features down to cope with more challenging games. Very few people think the latter hardware provides value for money.

Re:Many good points, but I don't quite agree (1)

MMC Monster (602931) | more than 6 years ago | (#22699876)

For example:

[...] a problem that we have today, and that is the fact that every PC should have a decent graphics card.
Why would a computer meant for browsing the Internet and reading email need a separate graphics card?
Don't forget that the dedicated graphics card (or even high end graphics on the motherboard) will add more power consumption (heat) than most users will need 99% of the time.

i915 (4, Insightful)

westcoast philly (991705) | more than 6 years ago | (#22699506)

Of course integrated graphics aren't for gaming. that's what a dedicated video card is for. If you want to use your PC for gaming (Which I do, casually.. with dual geForce 8600GTSs) you have to add on.. it's a simple procedure as everyone here is probably aware. but integrated graphics are VERY useful for office environments where they don't NEED 3d performance. wow.

Re:i915 (1)

Elsapotk421 (1097205) | more than 6 years ago | (#22699764)

I'd like to add , however, that most PCs that have integrated graphics can't be upgraded unless you want to use a pci 1 card that really won't get you anything. so even if those people wanted to upgrade they couldn't.

Re:i915 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22699852)

Of course integrated graphics aren't for gaming. that's what a dedicated video card is for...But integrated graphics are VERY useful for office environments where they don't NEED 3d performance. wow.

He's the creator of a popular game and game engine, so obviously he's primarily concerned with gaming performance. His point was that 60% of PCs are unfit for gaming because they use integrated graphics. And on that point, which is actually in the article, he's correct.

He went on further to say that the video game market is becoming split into low end casual games that those PCs can run and a high end market that requires a recent video card.

BTW, the title of this article is completely inaccurate. He was not saying "PCs are not for gaming." The question was: "Broken down, that means today's mainstream PCs aren't suitable for gaming?" He was talking about mainstream PCs, not all PCs. Completely taken out of context.

Stability? Price? Gameplay? (1, Interesting)

Sansavarous (78763) | more than 6 years ago | (#22699534)

Stability?

How often does a game console crash? PC?

For me being able to care for my own system is important also. If it breaks I like being able to choose if I upgrade or replace. Being in control is important that's why I like Gentoo.

Price?

From my research to get a console, which only plays games. It would cost me 300+ $ (American) to buy new.
To buy a PC which does more then just play games. It would cost me 500+ to buy new. (A bit more then basic) I built my own power gameing system for 1500$.

Gameplay?

For me I learned games on the PC I know the mouse/keyboard Human Interface Device (HID). I've not played many console game systems, I know they have custom controllers for the HID. The only console I tried that was intuitive to me in the least was the WII.

PC's have more buttons and button combinations. Plus they come with full keyboard, note: consoles now can have keyboards also.

Re:Stability? Price? Gameplay? (2, Interesting)

thebdj (768618) | more than 6 years ago | (#22699916)

How often does a game console crash? PC?
This has always been touted as some sort of advantage of the console over the PC; however, I think the X-Box360 failures have sort of highlighted this as not being as lopsided as the console makers would have you believe. In the end, system stability is largely a variable based on the user system and setup. My PC has been known to run for weeks on end without the need for a reboot and without a crashing issue.

For me being able to care for my own system is important also. If it breaks I like being able to choose if I upgrade or replace. Being in control is important that's why I like Gentoo.
I think this is something that is lost on some people. Not only do you often have the ability to fix your PC problem yourself (where this is more difficult to impossible with a console), it is also far easier to get PC service without shipping off your system. From my experience, console repairs typically take longer to perform and often require the shipping of the console back to a manufacturer for repair or replacement (more likely the latter).

From my research to get a console, which only plays games. It would cost me 300+ $ (American) to buy new. To buy a PC which does more then just play games. It would cost me 500+ to buy new. (A bit more then basic) I built my own power gameing system for 1500$.
Price is an interesting debate. You typically will have a higher entry point for PCs then you will for consoles. Of course, you have added functionality with a PC, something consoles have been trying to gain on to as well. This is why you see some of the console makers pushing multimedia services of their consoles in an attempt to show it is more then just a game-playing box. (Of course, the sony execs seems to have a hard time saying exactly what their system was.)

For me I learned games on the PC I know the mouse/keyboard Human Interface Device (HID). I've not played many console game systems, I know they have custom controllers for the HID. The only console I tried that was intuitive to me in the least was the WII.
This is another interesting argument that is often had between console and PC gamers. I think there are some games that just do not lend themselves well to the console. In particular RTS comes to mind. Here is a game where fast key strokes and multiple commands are often required to be successful. This means a console with only a controller is very limited.

People have also made arguments that FPS is better on the PC (you can get higher frame rates and some prefer the mouse + keyboard combo). The same could be said for MMOs. (I think they've managed to successfully simplify most RPGs on consoles; however, an MMO where timing and networking are important still feels better on a PC. I think the number of MMOs on console vs. on PC shows the industry believes this as well.)

At the same time, there are games where simplified control allows the console to strive. I think this is why most sports titles are better sold on consoles then the PC. Platform games also feel more natural on the console. Granted, these can be made to work on PCs with the help of additional game controllers; however, this is another piece of clutter for a desk.

In the end, I think both PC and consoles have their place in the gaming world. I own a PC for gaming (mostly FPS and Lord of the Rings: Online), and I own a console (the Wii) for various game types.

Re:Stability? Price? Gameplay? (1)

Trent Hawkins (1093109) | more than 6 years ago | (#22700070)

How often does a game console crash?
Does X-box 360 bricking count as a crash?

Re:Stability? Price? Gameplay? (1)

DdJ (10790) | more than 6 years ago | (#22700198)

From my research to get a console, which only plays games. It would cost me 300+ $ (American) to buy new.
To buy a PC which does more then just play games. It would cost me 500+ to buy new. (A bit more then basic) I built my own power gameing system for 1500$.

So, on this point.

I didn't have any current-gen consoles when "BioShock" came out. But we have an XB360 at work.

I knew for sure I wanted to play this game. What do I do? Rational thing is, make a list of my options and do a cost/benefit analysis. So that's what I tried to do.

I downloaded the demo version for the XB360 and played it on the 50" 1080p plasma screen at the office. I downloaded the demo version for Windows and played it on the big flat screen at my desk. I compared the visuals and gameplay.

XB360 was a much better experience. And it turns out that buying a new XB360 was going to cost me less than upgrading anything I owned to be able to get even half the visual quality the XB360 did.

I was prepared to hate the XB360. I do not like Microsoft in general. But I did a fair analysis, given my own situation.

I have an XB360 now. (And 1000 gamerpoints earned on BioShock.)

It's very easy to believe the cost/benefit analysis would work out differently for other people. But I'm a developer, and had a developer desktop at work, and that's still the way it worked out for me.

for those 1337 3D games (1)

FudRucker (866063) | more than 6 years ago | (#22699556)

you are better off getting a Sony Playstation or a Nintendo Wii, about the only games i play on a PC are not video intensive (solitare/freecell, mahjongg, etc)..

Re:for those 1337 3D games (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22699836)

No sure what that means... Crysis isn't running on either 360 or PS. It doesn't run on most PC even. Most gamers have PC in addition to any consoles because the upgrade cycle let's PC have far better video than consoles (though this is expensive). WoW is a bad example because it isn't new but I play it at 1920x1280 Wide. Most console games play in 720p. The PS3 does run in 1080p- not allot of games there though.

Example: I have a 360. I also have a Alienware notebook with a NVIDIA 8600 and dual-core 2.5ghz cpu. I know the GPU throughput on my video card is allot more than the 360 and more than the PS3.

Re:for those 1337 3D games (4, Insightful)

dreamchaser (49529) | more than 6 years ago | (#22699982)

Show the the console that can play Crysis. For that matter show me a console that plays the newer 'Total War' games. Show the the console that supports various MMO's.

Drink your coffee before you post!

Hmm... (1)

qqqlo (1191709) | more than 6 years ago | (#22699588)

Interesting thoughts - I don't know that "every PC needs a graphics card" so much as the marketing needs to distinguish more clearly between gaming PCs and web browser/word processor/etc. PCs. If you don't want to play games, you shouldn't have to buy the hardware for it, but if you do want to, you should be able to know what you're getting without doing research. It can be frustrating to try to find a computer to do what you want these days.

If PCs aren't for gaming, then what about indies? (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 6 years ago | (#22699590)

If PCs aren't for gaming, then how can smaller game developers get their foot in the door with the console makers?

(after reading the article) False alarm. There is still a market for PC games with low-end graphics. From the article:

there will always be a market for casual games and online games like World of Warcraft. [...] You have really low-end games with little hardware requirements, like Maple Story. That is a $100 million-a-year business. Kids are addicted to those games, they pay real money to buy [virtual] items within the game and the game. [...]

So I don't see the point of the article.

Re:If PCs aren't for gaming, then what about indie (1, Redundant)

cliffski (65094) | more than 6 years ago | (#22699664)

The point of the article is for his company to slag off a pklatform it has recently failed on, so the investors think they are still doing well.
I bought a Nintendo wii, just for wii sports, but will always be a PC gamer. the idea that the games available to me have to be pre-approved by men in suits from sony, Nintendo or Microsoft is just stupid. In the immediate future we have Spore and The Sims 3 coming up, and I certainly haven't finished with COD 4 or Sins of a solar Empire yet either.
The PC will always be the ultimate games machine. Ultimate flexibility, ultimate storage space, moddability, processor power, memory.
This guy should just shut the fuck up.

Re:If PCs aren't for gaming, then what about indie (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22700192)

I agree- Some of my best experiences have come from mods + custom maps -

quake II
  ra2
quake III
  ra3
  cpma
comm&conq
  crazy custom maps

And what about new games such as Warsow (which is incredible, if you ask me), which I believe uses the released quake3 engine (although don't quote me on that). Sure, now there is downloadable content, and maybe in the future mod makers etc can take advantage of that... but I still believe that you can't harness the power of people who do this for FUN when you release only to console... especially when things like the XBox creator club require a subscription.

I agree with the author's sentiment that integrated graphics can sort of 'trick' people into thinking they can play games. Anyone in my family would buy into it... It's easy for people who rip computers apart as a hobby to think 'well, I just need to go out and grab a new graphics card or more ram rather than by the a next-gen console every 4 years'... but it isn't that easy for most people who have to buy whole new computers and can't interchange components (and have no real use for old components... *ding ding, geeks love old computer parts*). But I don't think computers will be left behind anytime soon.

Creativity (2, Insightful)

c_g_hills (110430) | more than 6 years ago | (#22699630)

I fully agree with the sentiment. In the good old days, you had to be creative to get the most out of the hardware you had, and gameplay was at the centre (or center) of attention. These days it is all about how many frames per second you can push from your graphics card and cpu.

See the stores (1)

Goffee71 (628501) | more than 6 years ago | (#22699638)

A system is only 'dead' when the major games retailers stop stocking the titles, or have a tiny rack of titles in a dark corner. Last time I looked, PC games were doing fine.

Dreamcast, dead! PC doing fine, even the PS2 is doing fine!

What may have changed is the type of PC owner and the massive installed base that just doesn't give a hoot about 3D games. But I guess he doesn't care about them, leave that to the people selling card, tile and puzzle games.

If the consolers will get off their high horses... (4, Insightful)

Evil Kerek (1196573) | more than 6 years ago | (#22699654)

and stop having an anuerism everytime someone tries to add a mouse, I'd pretty much stop using my PC to game with.

I will NEVER use a joystick to play an FPS. Period. It's inferior. Period. A good mouser can beat the best joysticker everytime, given a level playing field (and before you start, it's almost NEVER a level playing field - so don't tell me how good you are on a console. The target areas are programmatically larger. The AI is dumbed down. Etc, etc. These are facts - look it up)

If you even START to suggest adding a mouse option to consoles, the kiddies starting pitching a fit and immediately begin insulting your mother. It's pathetic - the fear of having their asses handed to them in combat is funny. I really enjoy my 360 - but not having a mouse as an OPTION prevents access to a lot of what is cool on it.

Until that time, the PC platform will remain strong. Consoles need a mouse. It's just silly they don't have them. If M$/$ony will EVER gets some balls and support a mouse, I think you'll see the PC side take a huge hit. I'd rather play on my 65" HD.

EK

Re:If the consolers will get off their high horses (5, Informative)

abaddononion (1004472) | more than 6 years ago | (#22699874)

If M$/$ony will EVER gets some balls and support a mouse

Hmm?

Unreal Tournament 3 on PS3 can be played with mouse and keyboard just fine.

Re:If the consolers will get off their high horses (1, Redundant)

unapersson (38207) | more than 6 years ago | (#22699886)

"Until that time, the PC platform will remain strong. Consoles need a mouse. It's just silly they don't have them. If M$/$ony will EVER gets some balls and support a mouse, I think you'll see the PC side take a huge hit. I'd rather play on my 65" HD."

Unreal Tournament 3 on the PS3 supports a Keyboard and Mouse.

Re:If the consolers will get off their high horses (1, Insightful)

pak9rabid (1011935) | more than 6 years ago | (#22699892)

I will NEVER use a joystick to play an FPS. Period. It's inferior. Period. A good mouser can beat the best joysticker everytime, given a level playing field (and before you start, it's almost NEVER a level playing field - so don't tell me how good you are on a console.
Amen. If I had some mod points, I'd give them all to you.

Re:If the consolers will get off their high horses (1)

Bardez (915334) | more than 6 years ago | (#22699914)

You can plug a mouse into the PS3 and at the very least the OS responds to it. I'm not sure how many titles do, though... but is sure ain't Sony's fault for not supporting a mouse.

Re:If the consolers will get off their high horses (2, Insightful)

Evil Kerek (1196573) | more than 6 years ago | (#22700196)

Yes I'm aware of that, however pretty much no game supports it. The support is half-hearted at best and is basically non-support.

And, yeah, it is Sony's (and MS's) fault. Say 'ok you can plug in a mouse' is not 'You must also support a mouse'.

Re:If the consolers will get off their high horses (1)

pak9rabid (1011935) | more than 6 years ago | (#22699918)

I'd like to see how far anyone would get with a joystick in, say, rocket arena [gamespy.com] , or ETQW [etqw.com] ;)

Keyboard and Mouse (5, Informative)

tripmine (1160123) | more than 6 years ago | (#22699656)

I used to be a complete hater when it came to keyboard and mouse fanboys. But even since my friends and I started playing UT2K4 together about a month ago (yeah I know it's an old game shut up), I have seen the truth. FPS's are meant for the mouse. Until a console fully supports this, I will refuse to believe that PC gaming is dead.

Re:Keyboard and Mouse (1)

Brummund (447393) | more than 6 years ago | (#22699766)

Well, being an oldtime PC gamer I made the switch to consoles when the PS2 came out, and I don't miss the keyboard and mouse a bit. I now play COD4 with the sensitivity on 5, and I'm still improving.

I guess I got bored by sitting in front of the PC all day and night, and just unwinding in my recliner while playing games on the projector-setup is awesome. Also, Xbox Live is great, I've met a lot of people who I regularly play with, as we seem to buy the same titles. Great fun!

Re:Keyboard and Mouse (4, Informative)

abaddononion (1004472) | more than 6 years ago | (#22699966)

Again with these posts. Clearly Im going to have to give up on pointing this out, but:

I cant speak for the 360 (I just dont know), but the PS3 already supports mouse/keyboards fully. It uses USB interfaces, so there's no difficulty finding a mouse or keyboard to hook up to it. If you want to go wild, you can buy an expensive bluetooth keyboard for it and save a port. Game support might be running a bit lower. I dont know about CoD4, but UT3 fully supports playing with the mouse/keyboard on the PS3. You have to set it up, but it's not a hard process and can be googled.

Im not sure what more people are looking for with this "I demand full support NAO!" thing.

Doesn't get it (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22699678)

Tim Sweeny clearly doesn't get it. The Intel integrated gfx isn't great - so what. It may be difficult to support everything for 4x crossfire or SLI down to integrated gfx but thats part of the joy and challenge of PC development. Is it just that it makes it harder to support using the unreal engine and so make it harder to sell that and the unreal games?

The Intel integrated stuff is better than what you'll find in a wii. Also it's about to improve once Intels first high end gfx attempt comes out larabee comes out - a year or so (I think it slipped a little). I'm sure that will be integrated to compete with the new AMD offerings.

Disclaimer: I am a paid games developer, I develop gfx engines for PC and consoles.

Define games (2, Insightful)

Thaelon (250687) | more than 6 years ago | (#22699690)

From the perspective of type of resources "modern" games require, he's right. But large portions of the gaming industry seem to have lost sight of the fact that games do not need to be pretty, only fun. They are games after all.

In the last six months I've logged more hours playing Mahjong on my N810 than I have playing UT3, EVE Online and Half Life 2 mods combined.

So from a wider perspective he's not only wrong, but lost sight of what is important in a game. Not that I don't personally think that UT3 is fun as hell, I actually bought that one. But some perspective on his part would be beneficial to him and his customers.

And the alternative is? (1)

badzilla (50355) | more than 6 years ago | (#22699732)

If you're a gamer and not using a PC then it pretty much has to be a console. Yes, those horrid locked-down computers with hardware enforcement of encryption and code-signing that prevent you from doing anything unless jointly and expressly permitted by the manufacturer and the government. You may say you don't care because it doesn't harm your game experience - but what's next? "Oh e-mail is no good on a PC because you can't stop people sending things you don't like." "Oh word-processing is no good on a PC because you can't revoke documents with bad content." Anything that deprecates general-purpose computing worries me a lot.

Re:And the alternative is? (1)

F-3582 (996772) | more than 6 years ago | (#22700036)

Gaming is general-purpose computing? How come?

Yes, he implies that you should be buying a console, instead (probably a PS3, because the X360 has numerous serious problems, yet), because a PC is basically a CPU shoving some data to a GPU doing the real job. Considering that the costs for one of those High-End beasts rival those of an Xbox 360 or a PS3, why should I even bother buying such a thing, in the first place?

Yes, consoles do have lockouts all over the place, but you know what: PC games have those, as well. Think about the horrible Starforce copy protection scheme. That thing could even break your entire PC, if you were unlucky enough. What else would you wanna do on a console, anyway? Pirating games might come into my mind. Okay, I have to admit that I hate those import barriers, but at least the PS3 got rid of those barriers, so there's just piracy left. Besides, on a console there's no Low-End or High-End, but only one spec to optimize your games for. Game devs usually love to optimize games to run as good as possible (except for those EA guys).

So, basically, this is an article written i favor of the PC as a general-purpose machine (that's the reason why x86 is still alive, anyway), but not as a gaming powerhouse. It's way too expensive for that and you'll always be upgrading in order to keep up with the latest and greatest (except for those indie games he was talking about). Consoles don't have such problems, because their full potential takes some time to be fully unleashed, depending on the skill of those who program for them.

Before the mouse vs. joystick wars begin..... (5, Insightful)

acvh (120205) | more than 6 years ago | (#22699786)

this article and interview are NOT about mouses and joysticks. this article and interview are NOT about PC vs. Console.

This article and interview ARE about how the overwhelming majority of PCs sold in the US do not come remotely close to being able to run current game software. It is almost a plea to Intel to stop making integrated graphics chips, because they suck at running games. If 90% of the PCs sold can't run the software you write and publish, then you aren't going to be a big fan of PC gaming at the moment.

Yes, we know, if you're posting here you can build your own PC, upgrade your graphics card every six months, and use your mouse and keyboard to headshot Osama Bin Laden in his cave from orbit. That doesn't change the fact that you are a part of a minority, and can expect that other game publishers will begin thinking of bailing out on the PC as a platform.

what did he smoke? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22699798)

I'm no fan of Intel, but what Sweeney says is a pile of bullshit. Integrated graphics chipsets aren't meant for gaming, that's why even the smallest PC mainboard has the option to disable it and at least one available slot to put an add on graphics card.
Had Sweeney studied five pages of how PC hardware works, he'd know that modern graphics cards, the ones he advocates, draw hundreds of watts. In a world where office PCs are struggling to go below 100 Watts and less, having an integrated graphics subsystem that draws three times what everything else in the PC draws, when you don't need it, would be the stupidest idea ever.

Also, from a OSS user point of view, Intel chips give a decent performance and 100% open source drivers, which is something NVidia and ATI still don't offer.

Uhm? (1)

eebra82 (907996) | more than 6 years ago | (#22699806)

He's especially unhappy with Intel, which he says has integrated graphics chipsets that 'just don't work'.
Which is why you get what you pay for. Such chipsets are not targeted for gamers, but energy efficient laptops and general surf machines / business application computers. Otherwise he could rant about how much the Wii graphics suck when compared to the PS3, but ultimately, it is the developers who push the graphics to an insane level of realism.

There are many examples of games with "dated" graphics that sell in high volumes.

Re:Uhm? (1)

Shados (741919) | more than 6 years ago | (#22700102)

I think the issue is, let say you buy an average/high end computer from dell (minus the XPS line). You can get something like a Core 2 Duo 2.6 ghz with 2-4 gigs of ram and a 500 gigs harddrive....not too shabby....with an integrated intel chipset by default.

So the rest of the machine will be screaming... People then have expectations on their games going on from there. Its silly, I know...but those chipsets are used -everywhere-, not just in low end computers or work lap-tops, and customers arent properly warned about them.

Weird 64 bit comments (2, Insightful)

IamTheRealMike (537420) | more than 6 years ago | (#22699824)

I like Tim, I especially liked his presentation on programming languages in games, but his comments about 64-bit Vista seem rather out of touch.

Sweeney: Let's be clear with it. The switch to exclusively 64-bit would clean up all the legacy viruses and spyware programs that have been plaguing us for years. The requirement for much more system memory cannot be an excuse, because most owners of 64-bit processors have at least 1 GB of system memory installed.

Yeah? It'd also have cleaned up all the "legacy" software people are using. Like iTunes. Not to mention all the actual legacy software like kids educational software, drivers for old hardware, etc. I also don't know why he thinks this would have cleaned up viruses and spyware. These guys adapt fast and the extra anti-patch systems in 64 Vista aren't all that strong.

Don't work ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22699882)

"unhappy with Intel, which he says has integrated graphics chipsets that 'just don't work'."
Oh really ? I use FreeBSD on 64-bit hardware, even for gaming. And I can say that Intel graphics chipsets are the only one that "just work" on my platform. Maybe I'll switch to nVidia or ATI when they release open source *3D* drivers.

Who's fault is this? (5, Insightful)

GauteL (29207) | more than 6 years ago | (#22700046)

If 90% of all PC's sold can't play 90% of the games sold, who's fault is this? Is it the hardware manufacturers that sell people PCs at a reasonable price, or the game manufacturers who target hardware only found in 10% of PCs? Even if only 1/9th of all the people buying low-end PCs wanted to buy games, that would still double the target market (and that is assuming that all of the people buying "capable" machines want to buy games).

Games manufacturers could easily start to target the 90% instead if they wanted to increase their market. Even an Intel GMA 950 (which is in an awful lot of PCs and laptops) should be capable of playing 3D games if the graphics are scaled down properly.

Personally I think a lot of games manufacturers are pissing away the chance for a large increase in their sales, by being way too '1337'. They want to show off their game, and they want to make it look super slick, which is fair enough... but don't come complaining if this rules the game out for a large part of the market.

He is absolutely right (2, Funny)

The Fun Guy (21791) | more than 6 years ago | (#22700120)

The PC should never have been used for gaming. It took kludge on top of kludge to make it work, and the end product is so far from its roots as a general-purpose computational device that it is barely recognizable.

And those jaw bones should have been left the hell alone [wikipedia.org] , too. You can barely recognize them, either, and in their current form, they are NO GOOD FOR CHEWING!

Why can't people leave well enough alone?

mod ugp (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22700232)

syste8s. The Gay be treated by your
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