Mac/PC gaming death coming to a future near us?

Discussion in 'Games' started by Haoshiro, Mar 2, 2006.

  1. Haoshiro macrumors 68000

    Haoshiro

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    USA, KS
    #1
    Recent rumblings regarding publishers/developers (like John Carmack, id Software) switching to consoles (360/PS3) as the primary development platform leave me wondering... could "computer gaming" (PC or Mac) as we know it come to an end?

    Even Aspyr is getting lured to Xbox.

    I've been casually thinking the idea over and thought I'd share my observations/thoughts and see what everyone else thought.

    First, the Hardware:

    PCs/Macs have the edge over consoles in that upgrades happen at least yearly many of which directly effect games. Faster processors, video cards, the pending release of physics cards.

    That hardcore computer gamers help these hardware companies make money off these upgrades.

    But is this always a good thing in the eyes of publisher and developers or more of a headache?

    As a developer myself (not games, atm) I feel its a double-edged sword. I definitely like the advancements being made and more power can definitely equal more possibilities. On that same end it also makes development a bit shaky in that your platform is changing. Take the MacOS 9 developer that gets blindsided by Intel OS X that doesn't even support Classic.

    Game developers have the most to worry about. You can't directly take advantage of every new feature of the latest hardware without shutting out the majority of users who DONT have the latest hardware. You have to take a shot in the dark, guess where the majority will be in the 2 or 3 years it will take you to finish. Then hope you don't get left in the dust by things moving faster then you thought so you now have a game that looks "so last year." At the same time, again, you want to make sure people now can enjoy your game.

    Consoles are much more stable. The hardware is fixed, which already means less development time. This also increases the amount of your work you can keep for subsequent projects. You can take advantage of EVERY single feature the system has to offer and not worry about alienating anyone.

    It's also easier for people to buy into your game, meaning, its cheaper for people to obtain the hardware they need for your game. The latest video card, upgrade for memory, and cpu can be expensive, much more then $200-400 for a new console system.

    You can even garauntee the experience... and much less support because you don't have to worry about the myriad of hardware options out there.

    Now of course, computer gaming tech is improving and will continue to do so - but much of this still holds true regardless.

    Hardware manufacturers can benefit as well, since their hardware will, largely, always be used in every system. Small hardware monopolies you could say, every single Xbox 360 has an ATI GPU - no competition.

    second, Software

    A lot of the aspects was talked about already. Consoles offer a fixed platform, easier to support, more reusable work.

    They also have another Huge advantage - Piracy. Piracy still happens on consoles but it is much less of an issue, often involving some technical prowess such as hardware modding of the console, etc. Sure it happens, but it is just not near as common. Would it be if consoles were the only source of gaming? More so, sure, but I doubt it would be at the level that computer piracy is at. One good reason is that the hardware is controlled, whereas in computers anyone can buy from any manufacturer (at least on the PC side).

    Finally...

    Some other benefits are Controls, Online benefits (harder to cheat in online games, matchmaking is becoming integral as seen in the Xbox 360), and Profit.

    Console games usually hold there value very well compared to PC gaming with games holding retail value for very very long times. When they are marked down, they at least commonly go down to only $19.99.

    Also consider shelf space, if Console games were the primary market then they would get more shelf space - giving more room for the more profitable console games.

    Thoughts?

    So what do you think? Will PC/Mac gaming become secondary to publishers and developers? Will they switch focus to console systems and services like the online distribution of Xbox Live! Arcade?

    Will the PC game market become like the Mac game market? Consisting of mostly ports and indie/shareware games?

    If it does, will this be advantageous to the Mac platform? If gaming is no longer a primary focus for PCs, then why run Windows when you can have a more productive platform like OS X?

    ~ Hao
     
  2. bighairydoofus macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2004
    #2
    Gaming is not the primary focus of most PC's. Even if you discount business computers, most home computers don't have games as their primary focus. Many do, but most do not (most are actually dust collectors, but that's another issue).

    That being said, there seems to be no lack of people willing to plunk down five hundred bucks for a bleeding edge video card. For that reason alone, PC gaming will survive, if not thrive. I think the PC gaming market is slow due to a lack of innovative and interesting games more than anything else.
     
  3. Haoshiro thread starter macrumors 68000

    Haoshiro

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    #3
    I think you are missing the point here. PCs are where a massive chunk of the gaming industry focuses. PC games often get ported to consoles, but in general the majority of game titles begin life on the PC.
     
  4. takao macrumors 68040

    takao

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    #4
    whenever a new generation of consoles comes out this discussion comes up again

    let's face it within 1,5 years it will be an old discussion again with the next generation of GFX cards on the horizon
     
  5. Haoshiro thread starter macrumors 68000

    Haoshiro

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    #5
    I won't disagree about the reoccurence of the topic. Yet I don't think that invalidates the subject or possibility.

    As the years pass we come closer and closer to media convergence, TV on Monitors, PCs on TVs, TV Monitors, etc.

    This is the first generation that has pushed PC resolutions while also existing primarily of PC components. Systems like the Xbox 360 and pending PS3 that not only network, but also can hook directly to computer monitors, and include USB ports.

    Sure, the Dreamcast could go online (even SNES and an online service in Japan at one time), and also had an official VGA box - though compatibility was spotty.

    Oh, and Microsoft entered the game...
     
  6. Airforce macrumors 6502a

    Airforce

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    Jan 12, 2006
    #6
    I'm newer around here, but it happens on other forums as well. Personally, I don't think it will ever happen. There are things that consoles just aren't good at, including first person shooters. It of course is my opinion, but I hate first person shooters on consoles. Give me a mouse and keyboard any day of the year. Also, the xbox 360 can't touch the top end specs of my 7800GT :cool:
     
  7. takao macrumors 68040

    takao

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    #7
    oh and when you put the cost of those HDTVs into the calculation then the costs of a gaming PC stop being an argument ;)
    ( and for developers: you will need special hardware, more expensive dev kits etc. that's why smaller developers are still big on the PC side)
     
  8. Compatiblepoker macrumors regular

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    Feb 8, 2006
    Location:
    Jacksonville Beach
    #8
    I agree. I dont think PC games are going anywhere. Some older people feel more sophisticated playing on a PC than a video game which may make them feel childish. Not that its childish but thats the way it might make them feel.

    Roger
     
  9. Dagless macrumors Core

    Dagless

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    #9
    The way I see it, whenever I walk into a game shop theres a huge wall full of PC games. None interest me as there are so many. It's the needle in the haystack scenario. There are too many WW2 shooters, too many of the same game over and over.

    the PC/Mac needs a Metroid or Zelda. It's own franchise thats PC only, that is addictive as hell and will re-light the fire of PC gaming.

    It's the route consoles are starting to go down too. I was playing some golf game on my mates 360 yesterday. Whilst the wireless controller was snazzy and that, I couldn't help feeling that this is just a PC dedicated to gaming.

    In my world...

    PC= soulless, mechanical, systematic gaming
    (Japanese) Consoles= spirited, has love.
     
  10. Dagless macrumors Core

    Dagless

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    #10
    Very good point. Console gaming was good value when it was all 480i in the good old 90's, but now (in the UK at least) seeing that only consoles are HDTV's only use then it does look a little bad.
     
  11. GFLPraxis macrumors 604

    GFLPraxis

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    Mar 17, 2004
    #11
    I don't view this as a benefit at all.

    Joysticks are far superior for platformers, but the advantage ends there. The keyboard and mouse combo are far superior for:

    (A) FPS (mouse = perfect control)
    (B) RTS (usually can't even be played with joysticks, at least not in the traditional way)
    (C) god games and stuff like Spore and The Movies
    (D) Adventure games
    (E) MMOs, you can assign hotkeys to various tasks and type instead of having to hear annoying voices.
     
  12. OnceUGoMac macrumors 6502a

    OnceUGoMac

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    Mar 3, 2004
    #12
    I heard this from a friend that works at Gamestop. He was told that most of the major studios will stop developing for personal computers and focus on the consoles. However, I don't think it'll happen.
     
  13. Airforce macrumors 6502a

    Airforce

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    #13
    A friend that works at Gamestop....Bro, he has about as much info as me on the subject ;)
     
  14. Counterfit macrumors G3

    Counterfit

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    #14
    Like Marathon! :D




    Oh, wait... :eek:
     
  15. Anarchy99 macrumors 6502

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    Dec 13, 2003
    #15
    yeah right thats far from the truth
    with some of the latest games on pc not being able to be cracked(as of yet) and the fact that its easy to got online and buy a premodded xbox,ps2,GC under warranty
    and more and more trust online shopping
    its way easier to pirate for a console spend time once dont and you dont have to do it again
    where pcs its apply a crack, or use alcohol for some things and its getting harder and harder to find a work around
    heck look at the xbox a 5 min softmod and your good so its even easier
    eventually the 360 will be cracked along with the rest

    but anyway pc gaming wont die they make to much money to and the public outcry would be to much of a burden to the industry
    plus keyboard and mouse is superior for most styles of game
    and the companies like M$ have a stick up there ass and wont let keyboard and mouse be a optional standard control scheme
    it wouldnt be hard to emulate controller to keyboard mouse in software if the console was built to do it
     
  16. Marathon4ever macrumors regular

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    Jan 28, 2006
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    Massachusetts
    #16
    the person who started this thread is not very knowledgeable. I already posted about this nonsense.

    Computer gaming is not going anywhere. It's quite different from console gaming, IE it's not nearly as good.

    You cannot play an FPS on a console. PERIOD!!! no commas, no dots, no freaking semi-colons or any other dumb crap like that.

    Computer gaming is differnent from console gaming. THERE WILL ALWAYS BE TWO DIFFERENT MARKETS for those games.

    Don not listen to the idiots talking about the end of computer games. They have no idea what they are talking about. In fact, they are probably just trying to cause a commotion to draw readers.

    ok, I'm done for now.
     
  17. Marathon4ever macrumors regular

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    Massachusetts
    #17
    Um, piracy is very easy on the PS and Xbox if you get a mod chip. I would say piracy on consoles is not too far behind computers.
     
  18. Marathon4ever macrumors regular

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    Massachusetts
    #18
    YEAH!!! Marathon, woooo
     
  19. GFLPraxis macrumors 604

    GFLPraxis

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    #19
    Dude, I worked at GameStop until this last quarter of college started (drowning workload, plus I was a temp).

    Trust me, neither I nor my workmates knew what the major studios were doing.
     
  20. illegalprelude macrumors 68000

    illegalprelude

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    #20
    Idiots? Being a tad childish are we not? Its a meer discussion. No need to get pissed off. kids :rolleyes:

    anyways, I do agree with the topic creator in some ways. I dont think we will see the end of PC games but as u can tell, PC games used to be the only thing but its slowing down, more and more.

    To the person with the FPS comment, your right. PC has FPS...alot of it...to much of it. but PC = FPS, RTS and MMORPG but what about all the other casual gamers?

    Where is the Final Fantasy, the Metal Gear Solid, the Fifa World Cup, the Grand Turismo and the King Kong? No where to be found. (before you say u dont know about PC gaming, bla bla bla, read my sig and my PC stats, its a built gaming machine that will blow urs out of the water, more then likely :D )

    but I only play my PC for RTS and Unreal and I dont always play those.
     
  21. Airforce macrumors 6502a

    Airforce

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    Jan 12, 2006
    #21
    Final Fantasy, Fifa, and King Kong are on the PC....

    Just because you own a gaming machine apparently doesn't equate to you knowing what games are out :p
     
  22. takao macrumors 68040

    takao

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    #22
    and for racing games: there are plenty on the PC .. sure GT is really good but GT legends was pretty awesome when i tried it out

    what were the best sellers on amazon for PC games for christmas ? Civ 4 and age of empires 3
     
  23. MRU macrumors demi-god

    MRU

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    Ireland
    #23
    I actually think there is some truth to it. i'm not talking mac at the moment as the mac gaming community makes a negligable impact on the gmaing sales anyway...


    While I despise Apple's decision to use Integrated graphics, this year I have bought 8 pc's for people near me, all of which - bar one, had integrated graphics. These were people using their pc for word, email & surfing... some had familys who said they already had gamesconsoles so a decent graphics card was less important to them than the cheapness.

    It seem's that most people buying pc's these days are buying more and more machines based on cost rather than hardware. Most of these machines are going to be unable to play anything other than minesweeepr.

    You try and convince average joe to spend 300 quid on a decent graphics card so that junior can play doom 3 and I know what the response would be....

    PC games sales have fallen with each consecutive year and I imagine with PS3 & Rev out this year, the next two years will see a further decline. With the consoles picking up the slack.

    Even games that a few years ago were considered only suitable for PC are now getting console release. The new RTS lord of the rings game will debut on 360 as well as PC.

    This shift by developers & publishers point to an inevitable end.

    There will always be avid gamers on PC who are more than willing to blow a couple of grand on a killer gaming rig, but these are in the 'minority' of people.

    As pc prices fall and the dominance of value over hardware content continues to drive PC sales, the gaming will be sidelined.......

    Nvidia & ATI will sell more top of the line graphics cards to Microsoft & Sony (for consoles) than they will to OEM PC makers or retailers.....
     
  24. eva01 macrumors 601

    eva01

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    #24
    Hmm i know i love Metroid Prime on my Gamecube and that happens to be an FPS and my gamecube doesn't come up with a warning saying "You cannot play FPS on a console" maybe yours is broken :p

    And i know i can't wait for Metroid Prime on the Rev be better than any other FPS I have played.

    And thus far my favorite FPS have been whilst playing Console (Battlefront II, Sniper Elite, Metroid Prime)
     
  25. takao macrumors 68040

    takao

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    #25
    well then they have to speed up the porting since it's already out for the PC since yesterday (without europe getting a delay ;) )

    and there have been strategy games on consoles before.. with rather small success: wasn't there starcraft and command & conquer on the N64 ? civ 2 and PS1 ?

    unless a console maker comes out with a fully supported mouse+ keyboard add on no one will take them serious.. if they do then i start thinking about it
     

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