Not ready for Vista? You suck.

Not ready for Vista? You suck.

Pick one:
a) I hate Windows Vista
b) I hate current-generation video games
c) All of the above

I'm not sure whose fault it is at this point, but the lack of speed -- and in come cases, utter lack of foresight -- between developers and Microsoft is becoming quite irritating. Scratch that. It's pissing me off. And while I cling to Windows Vista like Lisa Simpson to Princess the Pony, I'm starting to get a twinkle in my eye for that poor, neglected copy of XP that's still on a partition of my main drive.

I can forgive nVidia for its snail-like pace in getting working drivers to the market (still waiting on those 8800 SLIs!), and I can even forgive a company like Creative, who was still rocking month-old beta drivers on Vista's launch day for its X-Fi series cards. After all, games still worked; it's nearly April, and I still feel like Supreme Commander isn't up-to-speed (obviously true, since gamers worldwide are still rocking a DX9 version). But at least it's playable.

What's finally set me over the edge, however, is none other than the recently released (and reviewed in the MPC June issue) FPS/RPG/LULZ S.T.A.L.K.E.R., a game with as many Vista issues as it has periods in the title. I know I tend to wax a little poetic, and sacrifice examples to the altar of overblown for the sake of giggles, but I will be completely honest for one full paragraph. Starting now.

Dear THQ. WHY WOULD YOU RELEASE A GAME THAT DOES NOT RUN ON VISTA. Seriously. I know that you wanted to get this little guy out the door, and really show off that whole "this is totally not Fallout, we swear" aspect. But come on. When a person (namely, myself) can't make it through the first friggin' shootout without the game immediately going back to the Vista Desktop... that is not just a bug. That is a deal-breaker. It's comparable to tossing out a lame opening line to a hot girl versus spilling your drink on her dress, and as your mouth opens up in shock at what you did, having your cigarette fall off of your lips and set her ablaze all Ignus-the-Mage-style.

It kills me. It kills me, because I actually enjoyed my 5 minutes in the STALKER universe, and would very much like to have a few more. However, having to boot to a new OS just to play a video game... well. Call me lazy, but that's just a step I'm unwilling to take. THQ has its first patch up for the game, which will hopefully address these horrible Vista issues. But the company certainly hasn't learned anything in terms of helpfulness -- apparently, installing the patch renders your old save games unusable.

*sigh* Goddamnit, Butters.



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As the story goes from the news at E3, Ukranian GSC Game World is still looking for a publisher to their newest S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Clear Sky title.

I guess THQ didn't want to do two?

In regards to THQ in this article, you can blame GSC Game World for not having the patches out and the vista bugs fixed, not THQ. Plus, at this time I am writing this, Patch 1.0003 is out now, which fixes a lot more issues, and 1.0004 is coming very soon, when they get their Chinese translations going right.

-- Johnathan Lyman --

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