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Does Microsoft really care about PC gamers?

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  • ZenbaneZenbane Posts: 14,631 Valuable Player
    Zoomie said:
    @danknugs said MS is adding KBM support because they're feeling backed into a corner.  He said he's excited about Forza in VR. 
    He did not say MS was moving into VR because Sony backed them into a corner.

    There, misunderstanding cleared up. 
    Lets make out?
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  • ThreeDeeVisionThreeDeeVision Posts: 2,087
    Wintermute
    Zenbane said:
    Hasn't it been that way from the beginning? The PlayStation has always been a superior console. Microsoft simply dipped their feet in the console waters; to claim that they are moving to VR Support because they are "backed in a corner" despite their overwhelmingly superior worth is fairly unreasonable. Microsoft may be successful by their own Standards; they don't have to beat Sony in order to say they achieved their goals.
    Great point.  And 'backed into a corner' might be a strong way to put it, but it is in the right direction.  They are definitely feeling the sting of the PS4 outperforming and outselling the XBox one, so they are obviously adjusting as any company would.  That is one of the reasons a little competition is great, as long as it is driving innovation.  That Project Scorpio has raised my eyebrows no doubt about it.  Depending on the price I may have to pick one up, and I have a long time to save for it.
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  • Fredd32Fredd32 Posts: 251
    Nexus 6
    I bought my first gaming computer only because of cv1 and I couldn't be happier. I am also excited about this move by Microsoft, it will be great to let my kids use Rift on "their" system. Might also open the door to getting my son a Rift so we could play together without buying a whole second computer, desk, monitor etc. Here's hoping it will support Rift.
  • Shadowmask72Shadowmask72 Posts: 3,869 Valuable Player
    edited June 2016
    I think you need to give Microsoft a bit of credit for their revolutionary Play Anywhere. Buy one copy of a game and it works across muliple devices. People can hate all they like on Windows store but as an Xbox and PC gamer this is pretty sweet. 

    Other publishers are still going for greed in this regard. So I doubt we will see an industry wide adoption.

    Microsoft also said Play Anywhere won't kill off console or pc exclusives either like some people are suggesting.

    Just to add, I just swapped over my Killer Instinct Xbox One save file to the PC and now can play the game in glorious 4K (which looks fantastic btw).  A seamless transition and one I'm really appreciative of.  Forza 6 Apex also looks incredible on PC in 4K and with racing games there's tons of time investment so being able to cross play, cross save will be welcome from a gamer perspective. I don't think you can do that just yet with Forza though.

    One announcement from Microsoft that's not been talked about much is the Minecraft cross play. My son loves the game and if it means I can now play with him when he's on Xbox 360 using my PC or Xbox One or even Android version then this is pretty amazing. What's also cool is having one profile across the multiple platforms so when he does move across devices, his saves carry over too. It's a incredibly promising ecosystem Microsoft are setting up here.


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  • bigmike20vtbigmike20vt Posts: 4,089 Valuable Player
    edited June 2016
    Zenbane said:
    Hasn't it been that way from the beginning? The PlayStation has always been a superior console. Microsoft simply dipped their feet in the console waters;

    Hi

    Are you talking PS4 here or the brand in general?  the current generation I totally agree, MS dropped the ball big time by going "total entertainment system" and by cutting way to many corners in the hardware imo.  Truth be told I think the PS4 hardware is weaksauce too, which makes the XB1 a total joke.  The only think the xbox had going for it over the PS4 was kinect and they killed that off pretty damn quick.

    but past generations I beg to differ.  The Xbox was far more powerful than the ps2 (as it should be it was newer), and MS really took console online to the next level with the xbox.... Then came the PS3/xbox 360 generation and they kicked up xbox live another notch, far better than PSN and a cash cow to boot.  On top of this, whilst, sure, maybe 5 years after the xbox 360 launched when devs finally figured out how to get around the awful PS3 hardware implementation and take advantage of the cell processor, a handful of games were arguably better on the PS3, for the vast majority of that 1st 5 years the were at best on parity, but often the Xbox 360 ports were simply better due to better gpu and better memory management in the system.

    The Xbox 1I put down to the 3rd console curse. (which in actual fact is 3rd console complacency imo) however this generation is thankfully being cut a little short - thank god we are not having another 8 year cycle!!! - and hopefully it will be game on again for the PS4 "neo" and xbox "scorpio"

    All that being said, As a PC gamer I feel I can largely ignore the xbox console now, as it seems the xbox is actually becoming a brand now rather than a console, so I will get the best xbox games for my PC, which means IF I get a console next year (I skipped this generation entirely) it will be a neo, for the bagful of quality sony produced titles.

    Cross platform play is interesting, and hell i would have loved it back in the xob360 days where I was forced to buy inferior games on the xbox simply to play with friends (like Borderlands, dead island and left4dead) however I will be interesting to see how they handle it esp in competative games where pc has a potentially huge advantage with a hat full of control options, better framerates etc etc etc. On the flip side, most PC games are rampant with cheaters, with aimbots, wall hacks and all sorts and I will be interested to see how the counteract that.

    edit PS god knows what is wrong with the quoting on this board, i cant write outside of the zenbane quote :(
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  • Shadowmask72Shadowmask72 Posts: 3,869 Valuable Player
    edited June 2016
    Hey Bigmike20vt  not every game on the Xbox platform will be Play Anywhere, I believe these will primarily be first party developed titles which in the long run will bridge the PC and Console communities.  This sounds like a great advancement for multiplayer gaming (not including FPS games where the KB Mouse advantage exists - unless MS do offer KB Mouse for Xbox).  It's a shame Fable Legends got canned btw. There's no doubt going to be a ton of other exclusives for Xbox vying for your attention and when Scorpio releases next year at least there will be less of a visual downgrade if you're a PC gamer also gaming on Xbox.


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  • ThreeDeeVisionThreeDeeVision Posts: 2,087
    Wintermute

    To be fair @Shadowmask72 my original post and gripes came well before any of the cross-play news came out.  The lack of cross-play was a major gripe of mine for many years (since the first Xbox came out).  The XBox was supposed to be the same as a basic gaming PC running direct x, so cross-play seemed to be a given.  Chat worked great from PC to Xbox, and you could even send game invites, but of course that would give your friends on Xbox the "please insert windows disk" error when they tried to join.

    It is starting to look up a bit as we have some better games coming to the Windows Live Marketplace, but it is still pretty dismal for the PC gamer crowd.  What, are they up to 3 AAA titles on there now?  (Gears of War 1 remake, Killer Instinct, Forza).

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  • Shadowmask72Shadowmask72 Posts: 3,869 Valuable Player
    Yep October 2015 to be precise. But your recent comment digs at MS E3 approach and perhaps rightly so when compared to Sony's (that live orchestra was a nice touch though).  I think Microsoft need to learn to cut the crap at these events and they have gotten better over the years but still linger too much on fluff that's somewhat irrelevant for the big stage - as you suggest coloured controllers who cares.

    I disagree about the Scorpio announcement though because if I was just a console gamer (which is all I was up until a few years ago) then I would have creamed my pants over their announcement (a new Xbox so soon). It's a shame they couldn't spend the time showing mock, or as they say in the business target render footage of what it would look like. I do a lot of comparison videos on my Youtube channel and something similar might have wowed gamers a little more because talking about 6 terraflops is pretty alien to most gamers.

    I think they needed a sneak peek at Halo 6 much like they did with Halo 5's reveal and some other popular game. However, can you now imagine the drama when they announce Halo 6 looking mighty fine for Scorpio at next year's E3. Yikes!


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  • ThreeDeeVisionThreeDeeVision Posts: 2,087
    Wintermute

    Yeah, the Scorpio was not the only positive I got out of E3.  Don't forget the new Gears game being cross-compatible with XBOne and Win 10.  But the timing of the Scorpio release makes this reveal a bit lack luster.  It could have easily been a E3 2017 announcement.  I will probably pick one up depending on the price.

    My main point with my latest Microsoft gripe was that they were really strong on pushing hardware instead of letting new awesome software push the hardware sales.  In my opinion that is a bad move for E3.  You want to sell dreams at E3, not push hardware that is a given (slim XBOne, who didn't see that coming?), or colored controllers.

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  • Shadowmask72Shadowmask72 Posts: 3,869 Valuable Player
    edited June 2016
    You're right but I think it's a case of poor direction at these events. Microsoft still clings to the purporting of their ecosystem as a way to entice the audience, even though its been said time and time again people don't want that - well not at E3, Gamescom etc. They want wall to wall games because ultimately that's what they are there for. Problem is if you look at their conference quite a bit was already well known even if lacking in details.

    Dead Rising 4 was already leaked.
    Scorpio leaked
    Xbox One S leaked
    Gears of War 4 - we've had a beta already
    Merging of the Xbox and Windows has already happened.
    Minecraft is a pretty old game now regardless of how its presented.
    Coloured controllers - irrelevant like Xbox 360 faceplates.
    Recore was revealed last year as was Scalebound
    We happy Few has been around the block on PC for some time now.
    And they keep showing that indie game Cuphead for the last two years now.



    Edit: Just watching that video you can clearly see there's a lot of stuff they lingered on for too long. Clubs, Arena, Cortana, background music. The Minecraft announcement could have been a 30 sec segment not 5 minutes of gameplay. The Gwent card game was niche and not worth the time spent and the Battlefield 1 moot seeing as EA already showcased it at their own event.

    OMG where does one begin with the Tekken 7 on Xbox announcement and the FF XV gameplay. There seems to be a poor relationship with Japanese developers of late so now making a point of their relationship with games already announced for PS4 is poor showing.





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  • ThreeDeeVisionThreeDeeVision Posts: 2,087
    Wintermute
    Totally agreed.  Their marketing department needs a bit of work.
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  • Shadowmask72Shadowmask72 Posts: 3,869 Valuable Player
     I used to be Editor of a UK Xbox website for a number of years which had some great backing from Microsoft (I still do have a solid relationship with them) and they really pushed the marketing to insane levels post Xbox 1 moving into Xbox 360 territory.  They were the underdogs against Sony and Nintendo and spent millions on getting into the gamer mindset. Remember the XO events they used to host,  J.Allard, Origen campaign, The Zero Hour Event in LA, The Peter Moore days with the GTA fake tats (I interviewed him at Tokyo Game Show believe it or not). There was a massive push with getting the brand out there. But they seem to have lost that same spark now they are more established and their approach to marketing games has changed considerably since then. In fact gamers have changed considerably given the rise and popularity of social media platforms - especially Facebook and Youtube.

    There's lots to like about Microsoft of today and I believe they are heading in a good direction but there's a cloud of complacency hanging over them I feel since the Don Mattrick rubbish when they announced the Xbox One. They have recovered from that PR nightmare with Phil Spencer as the front man but still, there's a long way for them to go. I'm hoping with the ballsy move of announcing "the most powerful console ever made" which reminds me of the old N64 marketing speak they will regain some more deserved recognition from the wider non-xbox owning community, and with PC integration built into their ecosystem too it holds much promise indeed.

    I guess it's watch this space with them.


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  • ZenbaneZenbane Posts: 14,631 Valuable Player
    Microsoft Game Studios made Dungeon Siege... and that was some great multiplayer fun on the PC. They care, bra!
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  • DaftnDirectDaftnDirect Posts: 5,293 Volunteer Moderator
    edited June 2016

    One thing that worries me a little about PC/xbox cross-platform support is whether it will adversely affect PC games.

    If developers decide that a good deal of money is now on offer from their games being instantly compatible with both sets of hardware... will they concentrate on getting those game playing nicely on the console and put PC second.

    Console games tend to have a smaller hard-drive footprint.. which means more frequent (but possibly shorter) screen loading.

    They also have different control types... ok the xbox will have kbm support but most console users will stick with controllers I think cos that's what's easy to use and comfortable when you're sitting on a sofa 8ft from the tv... consequently, the game controls are perfected for controller with PCs given poor control implementations (I'm seeing this with Fallout 4).

    Menu's and UI styles tend to be larger and more simplistic for console games as they need to be seen typically from a further distance. 

    And the games tend to be designed to be easier & quicker to pick up and put down cos that's what console gamers tend to want more than PC gamers (there may be something on the TV worth watching in 30 mins).

    I'm still smarting from playing Deus Ex Invisible War, the shockingly bad console game ported to PC.. that was the follow up to possibly the greatest PC game of all time... oh the humanity!

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  • ZenbaneZenbane Posts: 14,631 Valuable Player
    Ports are historically terrible, because it is often 3rd party groups that are hired to do the port... which is on par with hiring a 3rd party business to run your call center :o
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  • DaftnDirectDaftnDirect Posts: 5,293 Volunteer Moderator

    The quality of the port is certainly a factor @Zenbane... but worse than that is the developers decision to design first for console... then make it work on PC, rather than the other way round!

    Good or bad port... you can always recognise a game designed for console.

    Discuss.

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  • ZenbaneZenbane Posts: 14,631 Valuable Player
    Indeed, I couldn't agree more. Granted, my introduction to gaming began with the Atari 2600, then the NES followed by SNES. But once I hit my first PC Game (WarCraft 2 via MS-DOS); I never looked back.

    The consoles I own now happened either due to sheer curiosity or because the family enjoys them. PC gaming is far more sophisticated. I remember when Elder Scrolls: Oblivion seemed to be designed for the console - that was a huge disappointment.

    I agree that the two platforms are too different to apply an effective "port." It's like trying to take a Tonka truck to a real construction work site :#
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  • HanoverHanover Posts: 549
    Neo
    Next Step:  XBOX OS

    If that ever became a thing, I'd love to be a fly on the wall in GabeN's office when it was announced.  :)
  • cyberealitycybereality Posts: 26,156 Oculus Staff
    Quantum Break is actually pretty good.
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  • ZenbaneZenbane Posts: 14,631 Valuable Player
    Hanover said:
    Next Step:  XBOX OS

    If that ever became a thing, I'd love to be a fly on the wall in GabeN's office when it was announced.  :)
    Due to the line of work I'm in, that would be a great thing! lol
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  • ThreeDeeVisionThreeDeeVision Posts: 2,087
    Wintermute
    @DaftnDirect Just as long as they make it as close to PC architecture there will be no need to worry about the PC version being nerfed to keep in line with the console.  The console will be the same game without the multitude of graphics options, it will be set to run smooth. The PC will still be free to crank the settings to match the hardware.  I think they could have been doing this since the first XBox to be honest.

    @Zenbane Oblivion was glorious with all the official addons and if you turned up all the graphics settings and view distances it pushed the best PC's of the time to the limit.  A couple years later I was easily maxing the settings on a newer rig of course.  Skyrim is still one of my absolute favorites, I have played through that one a few times now and have all the official DLC.  I always followed the nVidia tweak guide on that game to make it extra gorgeous.  I noticed you said in another thread you like the Final Fantasy games.  FFVII is still one of my all time favorites.  I just played through it again on the PS4 to get ready for the remake :)

    @Hanover It always baffled me that since the XBox's all used direct X, they wouldn't just run a version of windows as well.  Maybe XBox OS will be like another version of Windows specifically for gaming.  Win 10 Pro, Win 10 Home, Win 10 XBox, ect...  The Scorpio will probably need to run something very close to windows in order to support whatever HMD's they plan to support.

    @cybereality I will have to check that one out.  I am doing lots of VR lately though and doing another playthrough of the GTA V story mode because they updated the hell out of it and it is looking better than ever.  I will be picking up the new Gears for sure and am still waiting for the Halo 5 PC official announcement (E3 would have been the perfect time for that sort of announcement, I would have not been on here griping either hahahaha).

    Thanks for the input all, this thread has been a nice little change of pace.
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  • SyntheticSynthetic Posts: 704
    Trinity
    Microsoft's grandest gift to gamers has been DirectX and Hardware compatibility with the windows OS giving gamers the ability to use a wide variety of hardware and software on windows....

    Much of the success of PCgaming and Microsoft has been from that symbiosis

    I believe they can bring the hardware and compatibility to a new generation via XBOX brand... because the new xboxs will be running almost identical as a PC we will see the division almost totally diminish between them.

    I think they should stick to what they are successful with and that hasnt been stores or publishing ventures, but hardware and OS

  • ZandilZandil Posts: 975
    3Jane
    MS are extremely fond of gamers wallets. 
  • DaftnDirectDaftnDirect Posts: 5,293 Volunteer Moderator
    @ThreeDeeVision, I agree, nice thread with interesting discussions... these kinds of threads tend to get quickly drowned out by many related and possibly (some might say) repetitive topics.. so I'm shamelessly bumping this to the top again
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  • Shadowmask72Shadowmask72 Posts: 3,869 Valuable Player
    edited June 2016
    Deus Ex Invisible War is a great game if my memory serves me correctly, a bit dark and moody but let down by severe performance issues. They tried to do too much fancy stuff with the graphics engine on console and failed. I have no idea how the PC version handles.

    You make a good point, Daft, but maybe we'll see more grown up console versions of these games to suit or we can hope there will be a wider variety of modes to suit casuals and those looking for more deeper challenges.  If you look at Halo Wars 2 though, they had good success with their anyone can play formula of the original and I guess they will follow the same mentality with the sequel. Whether this will be to the detriment of "core" PC gamers is yet to be seen but yes I can certainly understand your concerns. In a ways it's already happened. I compare my beloved Rainbow Six Raven Shield and all the pre-mission tactical planning and then look at Rainbow Six Siege - two very different games.

    I think the main takeaway here is there will always be pro PC developers making the right sort of games to suit the audience with all the bells and whistles and there will be those dipping their hands in to cross format games. I think Xbox play anywhere console games in terms of options will become more like PC games to suit the variance in quality between Xbox One, scorpio and top end PC, So at least visually there won't be any impact. Microsoft will naturally tailor their first party games to be compatible for all but you are absolutely right they will need to cater to the lowest common denominator in terms of gameplay. So ultimately it will fall on ambition of game design.


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  • HanoverHanover Posts: 549
    Neo
    edited June 2016
    Quantum Break is actually pretty good.
    Im probably going to buy that for the PC this weekend.  Does anyone know when XBox Play start?  If I bought this today, would I be able to play it on my XBONE as well? (which, to be honest, really doesn't matter since my PC and my XBOX One are connected to the same TV)
  • DaftnDirectDaftnDirect Posts: 5,293 Volunteer Moderator

    I think Invisible war probably was a great console game... and a good PC game if I'm honest... I just remember it having small maps compares to Deus Ex, especially at the beginning so had loads of loading pauses where you wouldn't expect them. I seem to remember a few simplifications like all the weapons used the same stock of ammo, rather than having dedicated ammo for each weapon... even the rocket launcher!!! I may have to play it again for a more accurate and balanced memory of it though.

    I hope you're right about pro-PC developers keeping us happy but I still think the cross platform support will put additional pressure on them... and if they succumb then the design factors I described will have to be take into account... xbox games have to vie for the limited disk space on the console... I believe around 360Gb (after allowing for the OS) so I have a feeling this will be a big factor in games design.

    I love some console ports.. I really enjoyed the original Halo at the time, and sometimes I only want to play stuff that's quick to get into and fun... I just worry we'll see less of the other type of game.. the type where you need to set aside a good few hours to wonder around discovering things in huge and complex worlds with intricate character development... I'm loving Fallout 4 by the way but it also seems to have a smaller world than 3, and some simplifications in the mechanics of the game... character interactions seem to me to be a little more simplistic for instance... settlements and crafting make up for it though.

    Here's hoping the PC developers stay strong!

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  • Shadowmask72Shadowmask72 Posts: 3,869 Valuable Player
    edited June 2016
    Previously they gave out a code for owning both, but the two games did not share the same progress. Play anywhere is a different beast entirely and I'm not sure it's live yet for Quantum Break. Looking at the announced games I would say not at this time.

    Confirmed games:

    We Happy Few - July 26 (Xbox Game Preview)
    ReCore - September 16, 2016
    Forza Horizon 3 - September 27, 2016
    Gears of War 4 - October 11, 2016
    Cuphead - 2016
    Halo Wars 2 - February 21, 2017
    Sea of Thieves - 2017
    Scalebound - 2017
    State of Decay 2 - 2017
    Crackdown 3 - 2017
    Killer Instinct Season 3 - Out Now - Tried this works like a charm.
    Ark: Survival Evolved - Out Now (Xbox Game Preview)

    Digital versions only at the moment.


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  • ThreeDeeVisionThreeDeeVision Posts: 2,087
    Wintermute

    @Shadowmask72 Do you happen to know if they got the FPS bug sorted on Killer Instinct?  My 120 Hz monitor made the game twice as fast as it should be, which was pretty fun but was a bit much hahahah.

    Can't wait for the new Gears!  Forza without VR support won't get my money, I have had too much fun actually sitting in cars to go back to flat screen racing.  Halo Wars games are decent on a mobile platform but are lacking for the PC, Halo 5 for PC would make me a happy camper though.  2017 is looking pretty awesome otherwise.

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  • Shadowmask72Shadowmask72 Posts: 3,869 Valuable Player
    Sorry, no idea ThreedeeVision as I use a lowly 60hz 4K monitor so I couldn't test. You can change the refresh rate in your GPU control panel apparently which partially improves the situation.




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