Blizzard Agrees With Valve About the Impact of Windows 8 For PC Gamers

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Alpha-Zulu

The author of this article must not actually play video games otherwise he wouldn't make such a retarded statement such as, "we have to admit we are slightly confused as to why they feel so threatened."

Really? Are you serious? Cool story and all, but Gabe is right. Windows 8 is a giant fail boat.

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davelray

Again, much ado about nothing. First of all, as far as Blizzard and Valve are concerned, they can voice their derision over Windows 8 all they want to, but it will change nothing. Their companies are out to make money. To make money they need to create their software to target the biggest market they can. Last time I checked, Windows made up around 60% or better of the desktop market. So do you think their shareholders are going to let the company dump the Windows platform to make games for Linux which makes up what, maybe 2% of the market? Not a wise investment I would say. Even MacOSX only makes up around 8% of the market, despite the imagined "mass switch" that Microsoft haters have said happened after Vista released. Windows 8 is fine. There's nothing wrong with it, other than Microsoft has decided to embrace touch screens and push more into that market. I even demoed the customer preview to my 60+ year old parents and both of them appreciated the fact they did not have to go playing hide and seek with the Start menu. With a single click, all the programs are laid out making it far easier to find something they did not have a shortcut for already. And if the final release is as stable as I found the customer preview is, I'll even be upgrading far earlier than I have ever upgraded my production pc. People like DoctorX who like to claim others are drinking the "koolaid" are not facing the reality that business goes to the market, and right now Windows has the market and for very good reason. Until there is a company that picks up Linux, and markets it and, here's the key, SUPPORTS it like Microsoft does with Windows, it will never be a mainstream operating system and therefore not a real market for games. And while I appreciate Apple's ongoing efforts in the market to design a sleek, eye appealing desktop and laptop, until they match the market price wise, and maybe beef up the power a bit, they are going to continue relying on their consumption devices like the iPod, iPhone, and iPad to make their money. I only know three people that have a Mac. Two of them run Windows 7 on theirs instead of MacOSX and the other one only surfs the web. The people I personally know running a computer with a linux distribution are two. Myself for the simple reason of having a postgre sql box, and a friend that uses it as a dvr for his security cameras at his house. Not a big market for video games there.

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rwbojotquez

Would it sound right to move to linux when the majority of my games are windows only? I probably would not. Like most smartphones users they continue using the same platform because they have vested on that platform. I know steam have games which are compatible with both windows, macs and soon Linux (L4D2). there games for linux already. Yes this might be a phase (ME, Vista) for windows but will it become a close platform in the future? Windows RT maybe, which is pretty much the Ipad. As long I can play x86 games on windows 7 or 8 I have no problems (yet).

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Typo91

I ran windows 8 on a machine, and decided to try letting it just sit there and run a 'mcadmin' minecraft server... should be simple for a system with AMD 965 quad core, and 8 GB of ram, with a ATI 6770 right ??? ( and SSD for drive )

Guess again, not only could it not run stable as a server for more then 8 hours at a time, but even without the server... just using it with software I normally run on Windows 7 a lot of things didn't work right. Like tools i use to share my keyboard and mouse over other computers.

It's stupid widgets and games would just crash if you tried to dink around in them too much.... and I tried putting Firefox on it, that didn't work very well either.

So i just put Ubuntu on it. I can literally say "Windows 8 drove me to Linux", and I never looked back. Ran for months without issues in that OS.

Make no Mistake, Windows 8 is not Windows 7 with a UI... its got some hang ups about how programs install differently and quite a few things will not work correctly in that environment. Thanks to subtle changes to many OS variables. And something else was missing too, like control panel is gone or something weird like that I forget what... oh and the command prompt was buried... i hated that.

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Luminosity47

lol @ you for being confused as to why W8 isn't stable with all your stuff you do on it.

does "Release Preview" mean anything to you?

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Cregan89

Am I the only person who sees Windows 8 actually being a good thing for PC gaming? Metro is perfect for PC gaming. What's the first thing every PC gamer does before they start a game? They go close all of their running applications so that they're not wasting any system resources. Some gamers even take this to the extreme by disabling various Windows services that eat up system resources in the background. There's hundreds of Windows applications that automate this process, allowing gamers to create gaming "profiles" which disable the majority of applications and services except for the game itself.

The Windows 8 Metro application framework does this by design and even takes it further. The entire principal behind Metro is that it freezes all background applications and moves them into a cache, thus giving the running application 100% access to the system resources. And as PC games are built for the Metro application framework, you can skip the Windows desktop all together. Metro was basically designed for PC games! They run full-screen anyway. The application window based desktop is just wasted resources. I wouldn't be surprised if a Metro PC game could squeeze out an extra ~5% of performance from a given set of hardware compared to a desktop PC game.

With that being said, it is quite obvious why Valve and Blizzard aren't too happy about Windows 8. The new Windows Store in Windows 8 is direct competition to Valve's Steam Store and the Blizzard Store. Microsoft would get a cut of their profits from each sale through the Windows Store and it significantly limits their ability to shape their sales model. Because Metro is locked down to the Windows Store, the only truly open option for them is to continue developing on the Windows desktop, which is not possible on Windows RT, is not a very elegant solution all around, and misses out on the inherit performance improvements the Windows 8 Metro application framework enables (as I described earlier). It will be very interesting to see how these companies respond to Windows 8.

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Penterax

Thanks Cregan for a knowledgeable and logical analysis of Metro and Win 8.

I have to say, I'm seriously disappointed in these industry executives. All they are doing is showing how poorly educated they are. They look at Win 8 and see nothing but Metro, and think "Metro is for touch and that's bad for PC games".

I mean, I kind of expect that out of people who don't know anything about computers except how to turn one on and access their email, but these guys are supposed to know a little more than that.

I've never been a Steam fan and my last experience buying a game from them, coupled with the idiocy of their fearless leader here, means I won't be sending any more of my cash Steam's way if I can possibly help it.

As far as Blizzard - many of us have been fans for a long time, but we are losing our trust. I personally think Blizzard has lost its heart and lost touch with the gamers that made it big. Very clearly here, at least one Blizzard exec doesn't even bother to try to understand the technology he flaps his lips about. It's a very bad sign for future Blizzard games.

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ultrapain

Justin, I've read 3 stories from you this morning, and all 3 had typos. These are 2 paragraph stories. Is it too much to get a peer review? Where is the editor in this???

the internet instantly lit up with story’s and comments

should be

the internet instantly lit up with stories and comments

Wow...

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Cy-Kill

Justin made a mistake, and so did you.

Justin's:

'...the internet instantly lit up with story’s and comments...'

ultrapain's:

'...the internet instantly lit up with stories and comments...'

Internet should be capitalised, however, in this case, it would still make you both wrong, as it should actually be:

"...the Web instantly lit up with stories and comments..."

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DeltaFIVEengineer

The difference being that ultrapain doesn't collect a paycheck to write article comments.

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Luminosity47

+1

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armstrong.ohio

might be nit picky but " It if will run on Windows 7, chances are it will run on Windows 8."

That statement bugged me so much because... at the beginning of the sentence IT and IF are reversed.

Flame on...

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gmvolk

In order for linux to really take off is if one developer managed all the code for it. Right now, everything is so divided its a wonder that it works at all. Steam for Linux will not propel linux into the mainstream, but what it will do is pave the way. I don't see Win8 succeeding but as others have said, Vistas failure helped linux and mac os gain more attention than what they had. Win 8's failure will help even more.

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warptek2010

You want Linux to take off with more people? Very simple and I am surprised no one has figured this out yet (i think)... simply make Linux look and act like Windows. It comes down to the GUI. Make it a Windows/OS X clone. Down the line, work on the games problem. Either work on the emulator portion (has to be able to work much more than hit or miss) or when developers start seeing more adoption they will start releasing Linux versions to their games.

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mithras77

Actually, making Linux look and work like Windows can be done with just about any version of Linux.

IF you don't know how to accomplish this, there are some "Distros" that have already done this. The one I like is called ZORIN OS. It's based on UBUNTU, and its LOOK CHANGER can make it look and run like WINDOWS 7, XP, or Vista. Their ULTIMATE version can look and run like UBUNTU UNITY, Mac OS X or GNOME 2 as well. (The ULTIMATE version is available for a small charge)

SO, this has been thought of AND rectified.

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pocketdrummer

Already done.

The problem is fragmentation (lots of distros, lots of competing philosophies) and the notion that to use linux, you must learn the terminal.

Sorry Linux guys, but Granny will never do that. Hell, most teens will never do that. It's naive to think that you can create an OS that doesn't allow you to do 100% of your activities entirely in the GUI. Furthermore, the OS should offer something the others don't (without the need to heavily modify the OS). Yes, it's great that you can make your windows catch fire when you close them, but that option doesn't come stock and it doesn't improve your workflow.

I genuinly hope Linux support kicks off. If games convince more developers to use the platform, then so much the better. After all, it is far more convenient to download an OS for free than to drop $200 for windows.

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jowens203

Being a "desktop minimalist"; I thought I was going to have a panic attack when I first saw this win8 UI. Personal opinion, Live "tiles" equal clutter. This reminds me of walking by my co-workers' pc desktops splattered with 200 documents, assuming they don't know how to organize folders. Maybe someone at MS can't stand this either, and are trying to come up with a "cleaner" option? I'm halfway joking of course. But not totally... ;)

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John Pombrio

Heh, do what I did. I only have two tiles left on Metro, the Desktop app and the Weather (I like the weather app). If the Desktop app is in the upper left hand corner, hitting the ENTER key jumps directly into the desktop. I completely IGNORE Metro, just a very minor speed bump on bootup.

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John Pombrio

Justin, did you mean XP extension for Win8 in the last sentence? Makes more sense...

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GreenTurtle

When Google releases Android for PCs, there will be true Linux adoption. I use Ubuntu now but Android could reach the masses. That would be a major game changer.

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Ninjawithagun

Android for PC...lmao...never going to happen. The Chrome notebooks are a complete failure and have abysmal sales figures. The majority of the public is not and will not take the time to learn a complex operating system that is not user friendly - period. The sad fact of the matter is that LINUX is best used for servers and Android is best used in limited fashion - on smart phones an tablets where their use is limited to specific feature sets.

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Peanut Fox

Android as a desktop OS doesn't make sense to me. The biggest complaint that people leverage against Windows 8 is the tablet/phone UI. Why then would you want to bring a tablet/phone OS to the desktop? What about Android makes it a better option over every other Linux distro?

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GreenTurtle

Double post...

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USraging

I think everyone is blowing everything out of proportion. Even if or when win8 is released if it truly is not adopted by anyone, people are not going to just randomly start switching to linux or OSX. They will instead just stay where we are all at right now win7 instead of make the switch. As for new PC's, for what i have seen win8 is just win7 smashed together with touch screen features 'metro UI'and new performance enhancements. Everything that runs on win7 runs on win 8. Just like when vista didnt get adoption, the oem's will provide win7 as the default for the most part and make win 8 a free upgrade when your ready.

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loozer

It's windows 7 with metro bolted on. Windows 7 is still there[mostly], and it's not too hard to figure out how to use it.

I never touch metro, and I've been running windows 8 solid since the developer preview rolled out.

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loozer

Let's just hope OEMS have enough sense to uninstall the stock metro apps and include a start menu replacement.

Windows 8 - metro apps + start menu addon = Total disaster averted.

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loozer

I'm also waiting for Non-game applications on steam to totally rape the windows store.

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RodgerE1

If Microsoft releases Windows 8 the way it is now in the preview version, they are crazy.

I tried the preview version in a VM and I hated it. The Metro interface is terrible and they shouldn't force it on us.

I don't have a pc with a touch screen and I don't want one. I want to use the Mouse and Keyboard and I want a desktop and start menu.

I will be sticking with Windows 7, until we see how Windows 9 turns out.

I have a feeling Windows 8 is going to be another Windows ME.

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Ninjawithagun

You really are 'one of those' simple ignorant users? You don't have to use the Start screen at all. Yes, I can tell you don't know what you are talking about when you call the Start screen "Metro". That was what it was called in the early release candidate and not the final version. I have been using Windows 8 Pro for about one year now and LOVE IT. I never had any issues using the Start screen or the main desktop. And you DO NOT have to have or use a touch screen to use Windows 8. Really? Wow. Please don't post something in the future if you really have no clue as to what you are talking about.

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livebriand

I've tried Windows 8, and can say that I hate it. I tried the developer preview on my netbook when it first came out, and quickly realized my mistake and reverted back to the Windows 7 disk image I'd made. Since then, I've played with it in a VM a bit more, and still don't like it. Hopefully this will flop so Microsoft will stop trying to shove an unwanted tablet UI onto desktops and laptops, and start making good OSes again.

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Ninjawithagun

Good grief...another ignorant uneducated posting. I can tell you spent all but 5 minutes using Windows 8 and then rush to a forum and post "I'm really stupid and can't get up" comments. You based your opinion off of a review version right when it came out? Really? Wow. Oh, then you spent more time with it in a VM? Please don't post anymore. Your ignorance offends those who actually spent the proper amount of time to fully examine Windows 8 and all of the functionalites and features. The sad, but true thing is that Windows 8 is a great operating...for those who actually have the intelligence to use it.

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DoctorX

Both Steam and Blizzard are on OSX. I for one would move full time to Linux if i could game on it. The only reason I am still on windows is 7mc and gaming. I just found out now that Linux can watch .wtv files. I could just have my htpc handle things. I could then watch the recorded stuff.

I am all for Steam on Linux. This is what we really need on Linux. Someone to take Linux seriously and help get them past this hump. Valve is already helping ati and nvidia fix their drivers. They have some serious top Linux guns employed now. I run Xubuntu on my work laptop and love it.

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Hilarity

What is Win 8 good for? What does it add? Apart from being a touch faster *rolls eyes*, what else? Are there real fundamental differences that are useful? None. Absolutely nothing. Microsoft is a 1990's company trying to survive in 2012. It has no experience with all this tablet and cloud and touch rubbish and it shows. I won't pay for Win 8 and I won't even bother pirating it.

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John Pombrio

The benefits of Win8 ARE quite noticeable, much more than a "touch". Win8 is very responsive for me. I find Win7 now to be sluggish, especially when copying files and multitasking. I completely ignore Metro and have workarounds for the start menu and other tweaks so I miss nothing from Win7.

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ohsnaps1104

Exactly my thoughts. I always thought that 7 was a bloated resource hog.

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The Corrupted One

I don't think Win 8 can kill Windows. Microsoft did make Windows Millennium you know.

Imagine if Valve and Blizzard teamed up! Unstoppable much?

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jreis014

Valve's not fearing anything, actually. They already have a gameplan in execution. They are very deep into developing a native Linux Steam client, and are working on porting their game engine over to Linux as well. They plan on a launch of the Steam client, including a working version of L4D2 (to start) sometime this year. They have also been urging the other game studios on Steam to port their games to Linux as well. Any one interested can read about all this at phoronix.com. I'm surprised the author of this article didn't mention any of this.

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DoctorX

^ This ^

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zaphodbeeblebrox 42

"They already have a gameplan in execution. They are very deep into developing a native Linux Steam client"

why dont they fix the POS on windows first? damn thing is broken as hell. its a wonder everyone isnt using gamestop app. for the most part no BS from them. very rarely does it EVER give me any trouble.

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DoctorX

Sounds like your pc is the problem. I have steam running on 5 different boxes and absolutely no issues. Gamestop is Satan.

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Hey.That_Dude

Satan is insulted by your comparison and demands that you make sure everyone knows that THAT particular hell hole was not of his making nor did he in anyway influence it's creation.
Yay win 8 bashing!

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Peanut Fox

Valve's Steam can't survive with Valve only titles. If Microsoft offers a competitive portal for purchasing PC games that's pre installed with the OS, and sits front and center with it's own Metro tile with constant adds. Valve will have a huge problem that porting Valve published games can't fix.

I also feel it's greatly overestimated the number of people who would leave Windows behind for Linux due to Windows 8 and it's many changes. We are far and away from being the majority.

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DoctorX

I feel like you need to check your facts first. I actually know of a bunch of people running linux or would move in a heartbeat if Steam came to linux. I for one would be one of them. I have been running windows since 3.1.

Metro is a POS...

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Peanut Fox

Right. Within your circle of friends and like minded people you find others who share a common opinion on the subject. That's not wholly unexpected.

Unfortunately the large portion of people who use Windows aren't playing games like Duke Nuk'em, Skyrim, or Left4Dead. I'm quite sure of my facts when I say that. Valve supporting Linux won't hurt sales of Windows or increase adoption of Linux by a sizable amount.

It's my belief that for Linux to become a true contender is they'll need someone to release and heavily support a version of Linux that is "the" desktop standard. That includes a marketing budget, and getting big software companies like Adobe on the platform. nVida and AMD are also going to need to improve driver support and start doing day and day release with the Windows counterpart.

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jreis014

I actually agree with you here. Valve does need the other other publishers on Steam to start porting their games as well if Steam for Linux is going to work.

I also think there are some Linux enthusiasts out there that forgot what happened with Vista. If people don't like Win8, Microsoft will probably just start bundling "downgrades" to Win7 with every new computer they sell.

But I'm rooting for Valve to succeed in this venture.

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tekknyne

So you think that Valve and Blizzard are casting stones out of not-fear or something? Like they're excited about competing against the Windows Store for game sales?

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jreis014

No, I think that Valve (Blizzard hasn't made any official Linux plans), is proactively developing a better alternative (Mac and WINE on Linux being the only alternatives right now) to gaming on Microsoft's OS, in case it turns out to be the suck-fest it's shaping up to be.

Also, referring to the Windows Store as some sort of game selling juggernaut Valve (or Blizzard) should be afraid of is like saying that Apple should really watch out for that Zune thing. How'd that turn out again?

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Peanut Fox

Pretty well considering they're modeling an entire trio of operating systems out of the UI. As a stand alone device it failed to do much, but the Zune platform is alive and well.

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jreis014

You changed your comment in the middle of me making mine, which kind of makes my previous point moot :3

The whole point with this is that Valve has their bases covered now. Steam is already available on Windows and Macs, and soon it will be available on Linux as well. No matter what OS people use (unless they're going with BSD or something), Valve is going to make money on Steam, and saying Windows is going to trump them in that arena any time soon is somewhat ludicrous in my opinion.

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Peanut Fox

I did. I wanted to clarify my statement.

I agree that Valve has their bases covered as a multiplatform OS publisher. However, it remains to be seen if they can persuade other developers to produce games for Mac OSX, and Linux. Getting the Steam platform out there is the right start though.

It's early. Windows 8 will be out in October (I think), and even then nothing will change. The effects of all these changes probably won't shake out until we're well into the next console cycle in 2014/2015.

I also think Valve will have to do a little more than voice their displeasure, and work on a Linux port of Steam. They're really going to have to get behind Linux as a gaming platform, get some triple A titles out there, and persuade developers to port code to the OS.

Ideally these developers could come up with a Linux distro that was designed around playing games and it did nothing else but that. Something highly optimized and easy to code for.

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