[casual_games] Same Vista- new thread
tturner at cmpgames.com
Mon Dec 18 16:04:58 EST 2006
This is in reply to Dave's posting but I changed the subject to create a new
thread. I am going off on a (wild) tangent and don't want to derail the
dialog he is starting.
I've seen a lot of concern about preparing for Vista and I agree this is
important to support as broad a spectrum of software/hardware configurations
as possible to maximize potential sales. But even before the Vista
questions started circulating it was my position that the low-end of the
range was pretty extreme. Any thoughts on when, if ever, we are going to
re-evaluate the minimum side?
I find it vaguely comic that we are worrying about losing customers with
computers that don't support 3d while also worrying about Vista. And before
anyone starts flaming me- this is not a position but an observation. Refer
again to the sentence about importance of broad spectrum to maximize sales.
Does anyone have a breakdown of how many of what level machines are out
there and in use?
From: casual_games-bounces at igda.org [mailto:casual_games-bounces at igda.org]
On Behalf Of Dave Selle
Sent: Monday, December 18, 2006 12:52 PM
To: casual_games at igda.org
Subject: [casual_games] Slow death for the current generation of
casualgames? (Bugs, Parental Controls & Game Explorer)
Just dropping you a bit of cheer before the holidays.
But seriously I want to raise some issues with our game community that we
are seeing currently in our network which will become acute in the very near
future for many developers.
Overall I also am very interested to hear in general what is happening with
Vista preparedness across the industry and what issues you may be
encountering. Here are some of the things that *we* have learned:
==Casual Games Vista Bugs==
About 80% of the games we get from third party developers have some kind of
issue with Vista.
Just under half of that number are "severe" issues that will significantly
impact a user's ability to play the game. In our network, these will have to
be pulled once our OEM partners start shipping Vista on new consumer
machines. Outside our network, these will die a slow but equally inevitable
death (if nothing is done to fix them) as consumer adoption of Vista marches
The issues are mainly in two areas:
* Installation/save games
* Sleep/Hibernate resume
In terms of Installation, many games write config files or save game data
into the program files area. In Vista this are gets virtualized per user.
Depending on what data is written users can lose save games or in some cases
will not be able to run at all as a non-elevated user after the initial
install. One thing that you can do now in XP to check is to run in a limited
user mode on XP. If your game installs and runs fine in that mode, 90% it
will work in Vista also.
The other big one is sleep/resume. Sleep behavior is turned ON by default in
Vista, so everyone with a new PC will be experiencing this. Furthermore,
Notebooks are the fastest growing segment of the PC market and there it's
not just a nice to have feature. Many games do not recover well, or at all,
when coming out of sleep mode.
==Parental Controls & Vista==
And finally, even if you fix your bugs there is one other issue looming
which could significantly limit accessibility to your games under Vista:
Vista comes with a robust set of Parental controls based on games' ESRB
ratings. And as we all know, relatively few casual games currently are ESRB
rated because few developers have seen the ROI for the cost and effort of
going through the submission process. Vista will certainly change this
equation, especially for new games.
Under Vista, as soon as *any* level of parental controls are set for games
all unrated games will be hidden from the game explorer and require a lot of
extra steps to access them. That's right: your games can just go "poof" and
effectively disappear in Vista.
The best defense against this particular threat is to get out in front of it
and get your games ESRB rated. After the New Year comes and the Royalty
checks start coming in I would strongly encourage all developers to consider
this investment in the future of their games.
Any other big Vista issues that folks are seeing out there?
Here is wishing everyone a happy and successful holiday season!
VP, Content Acquisition & Developer Relations
<mailto:dselle at wildtangent.com> dselle at wildtangent.com
ond%2C+WA+98052&country=us> 18578 NE 67th Court
Redmond, WA 98052
selle at wildtangent.com> 425-497-4538
selle at wildtangent.com> 425-894-0707
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