Steam Spirit: Microsoft ‘Appreciates’ Valve’s Work

By Adam Smith on March 24th, 2014 at 12:00 pm.

Rumours that Nintendo, Sony and Microsoft all sat around a campfire during GDC, toasting marshmallows and singing Kumbayah are entirely false. From a distance, the merry folk troubadours might have looked like the creators and purveyors of generational gaming devices, but closer inspection revealed an entirely different picture. Microsoft were there, yes, represented by Microsoft supremo Phil Spencer (not Kirstie Allsopp’s chum). But the other figures were animatronic effigies, constructs of cloth and straw vaguely resembling PC gaming’s past and future. One of them distinctly resembled Gabe Newell and Spencer applauded his every move.

While claiming, again, that Microsoft would concentrate on improving the PC gaming experience in coming years, Spencer also acknowledged that Valve have been the kings of the scene over the last ten years – “They’ve been the backbone of PC gaming for the last decade. As a Windows company, I appreciate what they’ve done.” Anything that helps to sell copies of the Operating System is a good thing. The Windows family is a happy family! Imagine how all of this togetherness might change if Valve started to make come hither eyes at a certain penguin.

Despite Valve’s encroachment onto Spencer’s natural habitat (the couch), Microsoft claim not to see the company as a direct competitor. Both companies can work in the PC space without stepping on each others’ toes, he reckons, and Microsoft will be unveiling some ‘tier-1 initiatives’ for PC gamers. I don’t know what that means.

I agree with Spencer’s basic outlook – he says that more people playing games is a good thing for any company invested in games and gaming tech. The need to fight for a share of market seems like a worry for e-sports titles and MMOs rather than for entire companies. Anything that requires a large community and a great deal of time investment can dominate similar competitors, although that doesn’t mean any genre is like a Highlander in that there can be only one.

The DirectX 12 news is relevant to Microsoft’s future plans. Perhaps that’s a tier-1 initiative? Whatever the future holds, it’s odd to think that Microsoft probably need a strong PC gaming industry far more than the industry needs Microsoft.

Via Gamespot.

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85 Comments »

  1. Lemming says:

    If only Microsoft were just happy to make Windows and nothing else, I wouldn’t catch my breath every time I see they’ve announced something.

  2. Solidstate89 says:

    All I know is, when they announced that they would be “doubling down” on their gaming effort, they released AoE II: HD Edition, and just a couple weeks it was announced that they would be doing an HD edition of Age of Mythology as well.

    If those things are any indication of Microsoft’s future gaming goals, I’m all for it.

    • Horg says:

      The high definition past is the new future.

      • Solidstate89 says:

        If you’re a pedant, sure. The other benefit is of course, it allows the game to run in widescreen and…well…at all, for that matter. It’s a bit difficult to get those older games running on newer systems, and the fact they basically patched AoE II, enhanced some of the textures and allowed it to run in widescreen is all I really want out of an updated classic.

        And that’s exactly what they did.

        • Taidan says:

          So, by “doubling down on their gaming effort”, they mean they’re going to start charging for patches for games we bought over a decade ago?

          I have mixed feelings about that.

        • LordGravewish says:

          They added much less features than available from Userpatch and Forgotten Empires, two free community-made mods (Forgotten Empires was later bought and partially ported to the HD version), and removed LAN support because of PIRATES!!1!

          AoE2 with Userpatch already had Windows 8, widescreen and mod support, improved net code, over 500 bug fixes (many of which aren’t fixed in the official HD version), a much stronger AI (than even the HD version has right now) and was free (provided you had the original game). Also, it has LAN support. The only thing it’s missing is Steamworks, really, other than that there is absolutely no reason to play the HD version instead of AoE2 with Userpatch.

          Really. I’m a huge AoE2 fan and play it quite a bit with friends (mostly on LAN), so the fact that AoE2:HD is being sold for 20$ when there’s a CONSIDERABLY BETTER free version that was made by the community available – provided you have the original game – for free annoys me to no end. (I’m actually in the credits, as I helped out with the widescreen and Windows 8 patch for Userpatch a few years ago, and more recently got it working on Windows 8.1)

          I mean, I have nothing against an AoE2 remake, really. I’d love for a real AoE2:HD, but releasing a sub-par version that is worse than a community patch that has been available for years is a kick in the balls. And to make matters worse, they castrated the game by removing LAN, one of my most used features…

        • xavdeman says:

          They didn’t even bother to patch the atrocious AI (which uses cheats like magically gaining resources when they advance an Age to remain somewhat competitive) and the pathfinding. Both of which were already patched with community mods for the ORIGINAL AoEII. Especially with the raised unit caps, it’s more likely that your armies are stopped by laggy pathfinding than by any wall your enemy builds. Also, they updated zero textures EXCEPT the classic and well-known resource icons (which explains why hilariously THIS is one of the most popular mods).

    • SuicideKing says:

      The AoE II: HD launch was a complete mess.

    • MaXimillion says:

      It sure beats GFWL

  3. Fitzmogwai says:

    If only Microsoft would actually support and nurture their games studios and products, like Flight Sim (n), the MechCommander series, Freelancer et al, stop fannying about with Xbox-only exclusives – oh, and fix their bullshit corporate culture as well.

    Still, we can but dream.

    • Jumwa says:

      I’ll be content if they just stop sabotaging the PC by paying companies not to release their games on it.

      Luckily it seems like the market handled that for us, because it doesn’t seem Microsoft can afford to buy full exclusivity anymore, with the rise of PC gaming and the relative decline of console platforms.

      • C0llic says:

        It’s mainly just due to simple business. The defacto for most games is to hit multiple platforms, that’s led to a slowdown in PC graphical fidelity. We get some extra bells and whistles (sometimes), but not many companies are prepared to build games that utilise the extra power properly when it’s easier to just tone things down so they can more effectively hit all 3 platforms.

        Cost im sure is alos a factor. I imagine unless youre a compant focused on PC ( and not many are) its far more expencive to develop for the extreme high end of PC then backport to console, than it is to just set your sights at a middle ground.

        Annd, that was a reply to completely the wrong comment..

    • Baines says:

      These days, you can say similar about Valve.

      Valve doesn’t have a typical corporate culture, but what they do have causes all sorts of problems when it comes to doing stuff beyond releasing games with nebulous release dates.

      Valve may not release fatally flawed software, but they release new features to Steam that are created in an idealistic vacuum, with neither concern nor precautions for real world users (both on the customer and publisher/developer side). Valve doesn’t seem to to any testing or even the most rudimentary diligence for the products it sells, and is slow to respond (if it ever responds) to issues unless someone raises a public ****storm that makes Valve look bad, and from most indications wants to continually reduce responsibility more.

      Valve seems to increasingly want to conquer the electronics market, while letting their current successes stagnate around them.

      Not that Microsoft is better. Much worse, actually. Almost a race to the bottom situation, except without the race. No one is really moving at all. Microsoft, Valve, Apple, EA… They all pretty much seem to hover around the same territory for years, none taking enough steps to really improve, but not really shooting themselves in the feet enough to decline further. Just hovering around shooting any foot that tries to take a step forward.

      • AlFitz says:

        You cannot defeat de feet.

      • Volcanu says:

        I think it’s probably the classic ‘victim of your own success’ situation that tends to afflict all mature companies. As they transition from lean, innovative start ups (staffed by entrepreneurial / ‘visionary’ types) to big companies with a ‘manager / stewardship’ type mentality, it seems innovation is harder to come by and what you get is iterative improvement of the existing portfolio.

        It’s something about the size, structure and culture of large organisations that (often) seems to thwart real innovation, despite the hiring of genuine talent and often large amounts of R&D spend. I suppose the theoretical best way to do it, would be to have separate small entities run at arms length from the corporate centre, which allows small teams to get on with innovating. The problem of course is that someone still has to approve these things and allocate the budget, which means such attempts (and big companies have tried this) tend not to work either. It tends to afflict companies across all industries too, not just in the tech space.

        • Bury The Hammer says:

          I work for a startup that’s growing and maturing at the moment, and some of this is just the natural trend to move away from depending on a few awesome people to setting up processes. Our company owner calls it ‘hero dependency’. It’s possible for an incredibly smart and hardworking person – or a couple of them – to run a company of maybe 10, 20 people, and have a hold on what everyone’s up to. Once you start scaling up, it just doesn’t work that way. You have to have some sort of process in place. Communication gets difficult and stuff gets lost between the cracks. Processes, sadly, are not accommodating to any sort of risk or ingenuity, and encourage playing it safe and covering your arse. You have to have a really awesome culture and hire the right people to work around stuff like that.

      • P.Funk says:

        I’d like to hear some examples of these things Valve has done that hurt the user. All these generalizations are too delicious, but somehow have no hard calories to them.

        • HadToLogin says:

          Today I tried to play CSGO. But AGAIN, like they do for the last week, or maybe even month, something went down and game didn’t seen my Operation Phoenix.
          At least single-player games worked…

          If that were accidental stuff, fine. But now it’s regular thing. And it would be nice if they would say if there’s problem with coding and people are stuck somewhere because code written 10 years ago doesn’t work this days, kids have fun with DDOSes or GabeN ate all the money and they can’t put new servers that would handle new users (or they don’t care about few hours of instability, as some people will get bored and quit steam and all will be back to normal)…

      • Frank says:

        Um, Steam has opt-in betas all the time. That’s testing, right?

  4. Viroso says:

    It means they’ll bring top tier characters like Ryu and M. Bison to Titanfall as DLC.

  5. Myrdinn says:

    It makes sense that Microsoft needs a healthy PC market more than the PC market needs Microsoft in order to be healthy. And while Microsoft was nurturing it’s (Xbox) love baby, snatching Halo’s PC release etc. it was Valve who kept things interesting by turning Steam into a digital gamestore. Valve has probably been pretty important for (some divisions of) big hardware companies such as AMD and nVidia as well.

    Come to think of it; the 90′s and early 00′s were a period in which ‘innovation’ in the PC gaming market was largely dictated by technical stuff like 3d graphics, multiplayer and such. I would argue that nowadays this trend has shifted towards innovation in terms of new platforms such as distribution (Steam) and development (GameMaker Studio, Unity etc.) while ‘technical stuff’ nowadays is largely limited by the restrains of hardware used in modern consoles. Makes me wonder where PC gaming will find it’s edge in 15 years.

    • The Sombrero Kid says:

      All the biggest graphical innvoations of the last 10 years, Deffered Rendering, Tesselation, SSAO, Post Process Anti Ailasing all started on PC and had to be ported at great cost and with a lot of R&D to the last gen consoles and same goes for GPU Compute and this generation consoles.

      • Myrdinn says:

        I’m sure you’re right. Yet I can’t help but notice the increments in the quality of PC graphics has slowed down through the years. Would this be due to limitations dictated by the highly commercialized console market or due to technical complexity?

        • The Sombrero Kid says:

          I think it’s a few things:
          -Resources being directed towards optimising console versions rather than making PC versions nice
          -We’re reaching the limits of what we can do with deferred rendering & need to switch to rays but don’t know how
          -CPU/GPU Manufacturing industry moving towards efficiency as opposed to power

          None of these issues are going to go away for a while, I’d imagine we’d just be getting round to consumer ready ray based rendering by the time this console cycle comes to an end and you’ll see the same kind of graphical revolution you saw when deferred rendering started being used.

    • TechnicalBen says:

      They don’t care. They get 100% of the turnover of hardware, and 30% (or more) on software on the Xbox. That makes their PC market look like child’s play. While the PC market is bigger for them, the profit margins on Xbox are theoretically much, much higher.

      That and they get 100% control of Xbox, and control of the OS only, if that, on PC.

  6. serioussgtstu says:

    ‘Tier-1 initiatives’ for PC gamers makes it sound like MS are going put us in forced labour camps.

    • distantlurker says:

      I think tier 1 is the Sudoku books (Tier 2 is the friendliest, Hello! OK! and tier 3 being the naked ladies O_O).

      This must mean they’re replacing minesweeper with Sudoku. I’m sure of it.

  7. RedViv says:

    “We especially appreciate the workings of the Ear-lay Akses and Green-lyte programs, that humans, like us, engage in so much. We, humans, look to adapt them for our gaming experiences as well, for maximum fun with fellow humans, such as we are!”

    • bleeters says:

      Farewell now, fellow flesh beings! We depart to ingest sustenance through our face holes.

    • slerbal says:

      You made me snort coffee all over my keyboard as I chuckled uncontrollably. Bravo :D

      That also pretty much lines up with my experiences working with Microsoft in the past….

  8. LunyAlex says:

    Oh Man look at how cool Microsoft have been lately, congratulating Sony on their success, admitting past mistakes, praising Valve.
    I THINK I’M GONNA BUY AN XBOX ONE NOW THAT MICROSOFT HAVE REVEALED THEIR TRUE, FRIENDLY, WELL SPIRITED SELVES.

    …Bahahahahahaha

  9. The Sombrero Kid says:

    Just like I appreciate being beaten to death.

  10. malkav11 says:

    Yes. Yes of course they’re going to “support PC gaming”. Just like they’ve supported it several times previously. Wait, what’s that? They’ve actually just sabotaged it repeatedly while making claims of support? Oh. Whoops.

    • DanMan says:

      Yeah… nothing will change, because they can’t. Where’s all that PC support supposed to come from? Does that mean no more XBox exclusives? Yeah… right… If they suddenly start to support PC, they automatically compete with their XBox branch. Not gonna happen. Nothing but lip service.

  11. MeestaNob says:

    I’m sure Valve appreciate Microsoft being fucking useless.

  12. psepho says:

    It’s not ‘tier 1′ it’s ‘tear 1′ — a series of 22 initiatives that will change the way people engage with each other for ever and finally allow players to experience true emotions of friendship and loss while navigating through the install process of each new game.

  13. BarryK says:

    lol Phil Spencer is so full of shit. I’ve been hearing about Microsoft “doubling down” on PC gaming since they launched the first Xbox. Nothing good has ever come of it.

    Up until around this time last year Spencer spouted the same nonsense the rest of the Microsoft’s toads are known for in their ham fisted marketing. The only reasons he’s playing Mr. Nice guy now are everyone above him has been fired and the entire world fucking hate Microsoft’s slimy corporate attitude.

  14. misterT0AST says:

    Are Microsoft still living off their glorious past of near monopoly?
    Where is their revenue coming from today? Outdated companies that are afraid of Linux? Dumb teachers believing someone actually looks at Powerpoint slides? Old accountants unaware of the alternatives to Excel?

    Boy oh boy are they a redundant and useless company if that is so. And does their future look bleak.

    • Volcanu says:

      55% of MS revenue comes from enterprise software and services (i.e. licensing, software, server products etc provided to big business).

      A quick and snappy summary if you are interested:
      http://www.zdnet.com/apple-google-microsoft-where-does-the-money-come-from-7000026043/

      I think that illustrates the point that being brutally honest, people gaming on PCs aren’t very significant to Microsoft. Hence their generally pretty crappy treatment of ‘gamers’. We just aren’t a priority.

      But when you say their future is bleak, I have to ask, really? They made $22 BILLION in profit (net income) in 2013. They have very little debt. They have huge cash reserves. To paraphrase the famous quote “Reports of microsoft’s death have been greatly exaggerated”

      Use of MS OS and software is very heavily entrenched. You talk as if anyone preferring to use MS products are somehow idiots. But in the business world they have a huge advantage because everybody uses Word, Excel, powerpoint and so on, and has done so for years. So when you hire a new employee, in most ‘office’ jobs they will be at least competent on that suite of applications and will therefore hit the ground running, rather than need to retrain on ‘the alternative to excel’ etc. Furthermore, if you need to send that spreadsheet to an external party, you know that they will have no problems opening it and using it – and so on.

      As a company, you would need a compelling reason to change. Likewise, with operating systems. Windows supports a huge variety of software, including all the various specialist programmes used in various industries, that we tend not to think about. Say you have an office of 2,000 people using Windows and you decide to switch to Linux. Most of them will never have used it before. Therefore you will need to take them off their day jobs and train them on the new OS. That’s very disruptive and expensive.

      Sticking with MS is usually the most sensible option for a business.

      • znisses says:

        But there are a few things to consider I think. The poor performance of MS over the last years (win8, GFWL etc) did push quite a few consumers out of their reach. This does start a slow process of slowly having their offspring grow up without much MS software. MS has a great position now due to choices and actions made decades ago.

        It is now more then ever so that there are serious options for workstation OS choices (depending heavily of course on the type of company/work needed to be done) Sure, it is only marginally less natural to choose MS software now but it is a decline… I really think that MS will shrink considerably over the next couple of decades… preferably earlier if you ask me, with more and more alternatives gaining ground…

        I fear it will be a slow, slow process but I think it is going to happen….

      • manny says:

        Yes it’s true, it’s been decades that the KILLER APP of the windows OS has been Microsoft office, and still nothing comes close to the suite which has been slowly improved overtime.

        With emulation tech though this is gonna be less of a problem for linux variants which are finally maturing to something your average office worker can use.

        The other killer app for the microsoft os is game compatibility. But if steamos / chromeos workout they will take this away from microsoft as well.

        Microsoft isn’t in a good place with the coming convergence of the mobile and desktop spheres.

        • jkz says:

          Really? I can’t stand Office since they brought in that ribbon bar crap that helpfully means you can’t find anything any more. The open source alternatives are really good now, Microsoft is relying on integration with other software to keep ahead.

          • Tams80 says:

            I disagree. All the alternative office suites are lacking. Sure quite a few people don’t like the ribbon, but I have yet to find an alternative with a UI that is better.

            The other suites only tend to be on par with word processing as well. There is no decent alternative to OneNote.

            Then regarding games; getting the current catalogue of Windows only games ported is a long way off.

          • basilisk says:

            Fun fact: the ribbon interface was first introduced seven years ago. Seven. There are many young users of Office at universities who have never even seen the old UI.

            I understand people don’t like change, but seriously, there has been enough time to adapt already. The ribbon is perfectly fine and I don’t know anyone who has had any problems with it after about two to three weeks of use. In worst cases, I can imagine it taking two months. Maybe three. But not seven years.

          • jrodman says:

            Well, by your own argument, the ribbon is seven years old. Apparently what people dislike isn’t change, but the ribbon.

        • TormDK says:

          I would beg to differ.

          Microsoft is in the perfect spot for the mobile and desktop convergence. In fact, it’s been working on the unified approach for awhile.

          Windows vNext (Or Windows 9, whatever they’ll end up calling it) is said to be the first truely unified OS. Windows 8 already shares ~70% of the API libraries between Windows 8 and Windows 8 RT.

          Being able to capitalize on this is another matter, but from a Technical perspective they are #1, bar none. Apple has not even begun this Work, as they seem to be happy with the OSX / iOS setup they have now, and I haven’t been following Google’s ventures all that much, but their Chromebooks seems to be little more than larger version of their phone OS Android.

          And thats just from the consumer perspective. If you consider the business side as Volcanu notes, it’s a much better story overall than any of it’s competitors.

          So yeah, Microsoft is not going away and they are going into this battle fists up and ready for the full twelve rounds.

          • manny says:

            This would be the case if they hadn’t utterly failed at gaining any mobile device traction. Android has sewn up the market and tablets too. Chromeos is based on the chrome browser which is the streamlined doorway to the internet consumers will want. And webgl allows them to run any code safely. Which means run any program from any os.They’ve already won.

          • TormDK says:

            Not likely.

            Windows Phone is growing still and chromebooks is like Windows RT – not overly useful for anything serious.

            Plus there’s the matter of Google’s paid services, against Microsoft’s Office 365.

      • misterT0AST says:

        Your answer was very interesting and informational. Thank you for taking the time to write all that!

  15. Lars Westergren says:

    The arrival of spring in the northern hemisphere is heralded by the solemn “Hey guys, we are really serious about PC gaming this year, honestly” ritual conducted by the Microsoft priesthood. The frail and fluttering promises look even more beautiful in the knowledge that as autumn comes, the grim masks of business realignment will be donned, and the cycle will come to its inevitable conclusion.

  16. HadToLogin says:

    Come on guys, they showed that love PCs lately, didn’t they? For example they advertise DX12 by using Xbox Exclusive Forza, which is quickly followed by multiple confirmations it will never come to any PC, even those with DX12.
    If that’s not love I don’t know what is ;)

    • UncleLou says:

      Heh, yes. If they had announced Forza for the PC, I would have shown a little motivation to at least try and believe they are serious. As it is, the whole Dx12 exercise only confirmed that they’re continuing just as they were.

      Which, as the article points out, is a bit strange, seeing how they really could do with showing some support for Windows as a gaming platform, as times are getting tougher.

      • Myridiam says:

        Why would a console-only game from MS be a bad thing? It’s not like Sony is releasing GT on PC anytime soon… or Nintendo’s Mario Bros. So just because MS is operating in both sectors all games they release should also be on PC?

        On the DX12 side; I think it’s noteworthy that they actually make it available for “existing” videocards as well.
        (http://www.rockpapershotgun.com/2014/03/20/directx-12-existing-graphics-cards/)

        • HadToLogin says:

          I just found it funny MS is SO committed to PCs, they have NOTHING to show their new flagship (DX12, and quite possibly Windows 9) and need to use console exclusives.

          • SominiTheCommenter says:

            Everybody knows people don’t play PC games on couches. That’s the main reason.

  17. SuicideKing says:

    From some of what he said, i had a funny feeling we’ll see some kind of GFWL successor.

    Hey Microsoft, Halo 5 for the PC or GTFO.

  18. C0llic says:

    Rows of titles, all bearing down on meee

  19. Raiyan 1.0 says:

    While MS exclusively reaches into their bumhole when procuring evidence of doubling down on PC gaming, I wouldn’t go so far as to say we don’t need MS. Why? The holy grail of PC gaming – backward compatibility.

    The insane work Microsoft does to keep backward compatibility is like one of those games where shit just falls from the sky endlessly, and as you keep catching it, it just falls faster and faster until you miss one, and then the game calls you a loser.

    It all seems so very pointless.

    There’s a lot of responsibility involved in programming, such as making sure the program lets go of resources it’s done using, and not making assumptions that, if they turn out to be wrong, will make the user’s computer shit its pants. Some programmers take this as a dare.

    For instance, the original SimCity was really sloppy about how it used memory (i.e., it told DOS it was finished using a bunch of memory and then immediately start using it anyway). This was fine as long as the system wasn’t using much of its memory anyway (and DOS didn’t). But then Windows came along and started needing this memory that SimCity was tying up. So the game crashed.

    Microsoft fixed this by writing code so Windows would detect if SimCity were running and do special tricks to make it work. Then Microsoft did that for the next piece of software that fucked up. Then the next. Here is the current list of “we found this program doing stupid shit and have to work around it” applications Windows currently has to look for. There are 6,520 of them.

    Source: http://www.cracked.com/article_18808_7-reasons-computer-glitches-wont-go-away-ever.html

    I wouldn’t trust Valve or any other Linux wrench monkeys to give me that kind of service.

    • manny says:

      THIS. It’s difficult to believe linux will be able to match this level of investment in the os. But the crowd is powerful and not to be underestimated. China with it’s adoption of linux as it’s primary os is basically the death knell of Microsofts monopoly. And the hundreds of thousands of programmers fixing bugs on programs and the linux os (Ubuntu it seems) will catch up to microsofts os.

      In anycase OS wars ended when the internet became the new killer app. Cloud computing is the future and any half decent os can manage that. Things will revolve around killer internet apps, the steam game library is so far the most potent internet app.

      • Chorltonwheelie says:

        Bloody Linux…dream on.
        Strictly for types who’ll install Linux on their gran’s pc because she forgot her email password.

        Windows does everything, everywhere and that’s what we need. That’s why we all use it. The alternatives don’t even come close. No hysterical ‘evil empire’ reasons needed to explain that.

        Aaaand if you think MS needs gaming I’m afraid you’ve not acquainted yourself with where and how MS makes it’s megabucks. It provides an OS to business that will allow them to do what ever they like, in sharp contrast to other offerings out there. A bye product of that is that It’s a great gaming platform…pin money for them but great for Game Devs and us.

  20. ListsMania says:

    I have used windows 98, windows 2000, windows xp, windows vista but trust me on this .. the best one which i found till now is Windows 8.. i love it

    • cauldron says:

      At core, it’s a great OS. It’s only its interface which is rubbish.

      • Don Reba says:

        The very concept of tying the new API to the Microsoft Store is despicable. I will not stand for this.

        • TormDK says:

          I guess you are not using Android og anything from Apple then?

          • SominiTheCommenter says:

            Damn right, for the same reasons!

          • Don Reba says:

            I don’t use anything from Apple, no. But, AFAIK, OS X does not place roadblocks for competing methods of distribution, so it is ok in my books.

            You see, Microsoft added new functionality to Windows 8, but the only way to access it is by going through Microsoft’s App store. The classic software is left in a disadvantaged position. Which is no doubt a big reason for why Valve took off.

    • SuicideKing says:

      See, the thing is, an operating system is supposed to provide an environment for everything else, and shouldn’t try to be a fucking “app” in itself.

      And THAT is the problem with Windows 8. It wants to get into your face so desperately it’s crazy. I’ve used 95,98, XP, 7 and 8 (though not for my primary systems, and for about a month in total)…and Windows 8 felt pointless, annoying and an ugly mix of two different halves of Microsoft.

  21. Alpharadious says:

    Microsoft is just like NATO. Not actions – talk only.
    It’s not the first time when they are declaring support for PC. And then after around half year again they are doing this – declaring support for PC. And again! Wow M$, your support for PC, by promising of increse support for PC is just so big deal!

    • MattM says:

      The last time a NATO country was attacked, it kicked off a 10 year war. If you are talking about the Russian-Crimean situation then remember that Ukraine is not in NATO.

      • Widthwood says:

        But if NATO intervenes we will have a chance to experience Fallout 4 with ultra-realistic graphics FOR FREE!! Wouldn’t that be awesome?

  22. Neurotic says:

    I think “tier-1″ initiatives have beards, sunglasses and ‘ethnic’ scarves wrapped loosely around their meaty necks. I should watch out if I were you.

  23. wrycon says:

    Is it “toasting marshmallows” in the UK?

    In the US we say “roasting marshmallows”. Upon first read I pictured them squishing marshmallows together in a celebratory “cheers”.

  24. Don Reba says:

    He means that PC gamers will get tier-1 initiatives, but have to get an XBox for the higher tiers.

  25. Tei says:

    Yea, right.

    And we will get DirectX 12 in Windows 7. Ok? suuuuuuuuuuuuuuure.

    Somebody post that meme about memento with the photo of microsoft and “don’t trust her lies”.

  26. Tuor says:

    I’m sure most people know this, but Xbox uses DirectX internally. Since the original XBOX came out, Microsoft has only rarely updated DirectX except when a new version of Xbox was released.

  27. P.Funk says:

    Know what would have given me confidence in M$ and PC gaming? Not having shit canned the Microsoft Flight Simulator team after converting that most venerable of PC titles to a shitty and utterly irrelevant free to play game.

    Seriously, they didn’t have the understanding that simmers don’t want F2P in non adversarial titles, instead they want an uncompromized, full licensed (see total ownership) sandbox title with the chops to be modded to kingdom come. If they were REALLY smart they’d have avoided F2P but instead gone for a new Flight Sim title in the mould of FSX and heaped on liberal amounts of DLC in an attempt to tap into the market created by the third parties that have made fortunes selling people texture packs, airport redos and host of high quality add on planes. So much money to be made and they could have corporatized the crap out of it.

    They’re so dumb.

  28. weary ghoul says:

    It’s kind of sad how Microsoft can make the most mild, uncontroversial, innocuous comment and yet somehow they still generate a full page of derision. I almost feel sorry for them.

    But really, I bet Microsoft could announce they’re donating $100 mil to cancer research and the comments on most websites would nonetheless be bile and put-downs peppered with liberal use of the (ever fresh and witty) “M$” meme.

    • Tuor says:

      Yeah, it’s so sad the way past actions color current perceptions.

      There was this story about a boy who cried “Wolf”…

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