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Comment Re:No Sid We Do Not Love The Steam (Score 1) 295

Steam is pretty bad, but at least it works. 2K, and most publishers, have been going with Games for Windows Live, and that's an even bigger mess. GfWL lets you play single-player offline, but puts on an activation limit. Also, the peer-to-peer networking in GfWL doesn't work unless you either DMZ the system running it or forward a whole bunch of ports. If your ISP has an upstream firewall, it probably won't work at all. Strategy games generally use P2P and host migration for multiplayer, so you can see where GfWL would create issues.

Comment Re:Civ was my offline game (Score 1) 295

Generally, the "only activate once" checks your activation code (serial number, etc.), downloads some portion of the game off a server somewhere, and then marks it as activated. Should that server go down, you may not be able to install the game any longer. At the same time, there are usually hidden activation limits (3 to 5 installs) before a game will shut down and require a phone call to tech support to up the limit.

Is Steam better than this? That's a matter of personal preference. Is it as good as no DRM? Hell no.

Comment Re:Civ was my offline game (Score 1) 295

Steam has design problems, but the bigger issue is your ISP maintaining a proper connection. Check your contract -- they may be liable if they're not meeting a standard of service (residential contracts may not have such a standard, and if they do its generally lower than a commercial connection. Also, let your ISP know when you're having issues. I had relatively frequent dropouts until I explicitly informed my ISP; after I told them about it, they fixed it, and it stopped.

Comment Re:Civ was my offline game (Score 1) 295

Civ IV eventually came out in a DRM-free version.

It did? Do you have any information on that?

rather than pirate (or even threaten to pirate) the game.

Don't pirate. Publishers count each case of piracy as a lost sale. That may be a flawed method, but its how they do it. Instead, take your money and buy a game that is roughly the same but doesn't have DRM (i.e.: Galactic Civilizations). Make sure you buy it from a shop that reports to NPD Group (they track video game sales) so the purchase gets properly represented. That sends a much harsher message than piracy: your policies drove my willing dollars elsewhere.

Comment Re:I have a dream (Score 1) 850

You mean, they'll be able to view "touch" interfaces of websites, because they'll never be able to share applications? That's already possible, as long as web devs aren't idiots when they set up their sites (see also: Facebook redirecting Android phones to the regular mobile site instead of the "touch" mobile site for many months).

Comment Re:Where's my flying car?! (Score 1) 137

When Epic Games is nice enough to release the source code to the earlier versions of the Unreal Engine. They released the source for the renderer (which people have ported to DX 9, and DX 10), but not the full engine. id Software is courteous enough to release their old engines under the GPL, so ports like this happen fairly regularly.

Comment Re:it's not dying (Score 1) 496

On your last point: Asus, Acer, and Dell are pretty smart not to try to be a major player in the game console market. The market is crowded as hell (3 huge competitors with a several-year lead in install base and minimum 8/9 year lead in mindshare for Xbox, decade and a half for PlayStation, and decades for Nintendo), their competitors have a pretty big back library, and you're talking about hardware companies that don't generally develop software (and when they do, it tends to suck). Licensing an engine isn't cheap, and building a good game around it isn't any easier: there are a bunch of UE3 licensees that put out crap games, including Too Human, Stranglehold, Area 51, etc. The best these guys could do is to pay id to have Rage on their systems day-and-date, and then pick up on the scraps of gaming on Linux (and as a Linux fan, I know how scrap the games tend to be). Remember: game consoles aren't bought based on the hardware or OS inside them, they're bought on whether or not there is a big library good games for it.

TL;DR version: crowded, competitive market won't be overtaken by the likes of Frozen Bubble and Warsow.

Comment Re:No (Score 1) 496

Did you *gasp* read the article? It doesn't talk about now, its mainly about whether or not the current cycle of console hardware refreshes every X years will last, and if something like OnLive (streaming games over the net to a dumb interface, and letting the actual hardware sit in a data center) will take its place. MW2's launch says that consoles are good now, but says nothing about consoles beyond the X360/PS3 generation.

Comment Re:No (Score 1) 496

Games for Windows is a scourge. I don't know anyone who actually likes it. Games that use it typically are ports from the 360 (Fallout 3, Dirt 2, Gears of War to name a few). It only runs when the game is running (a blessing or a curse, depending on your point of view). Steam is far more popular in my circle of friends because you can just hop in to a TF2 server or get invited to a L4D game without having the game running already. Also, Steam DRM tends to suck less than the GfW DRM.

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