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Voodoo Founder Says Microsoft Is Doing Gaming Wrong

laptop exploding battery fireI’m totally a PC gamer, especially when it comes to first-person shooters. I play Team Fortress 2 most nights of my life (Heavy, if you’re wondering), and I’ve even been known to pick up the odd bout of Modern Warfare 2. So this news gives me a bit of a shit-eating grin. My apologies in advance to the Halo-folk reading this.

Rahul Sood, whom you may or may not recognize as the founder of Voodoo, and also CTO of HP’s gaming affairs, recently sounded off on Microsoft’s decision to axe console/PC cross-platform gaming, and champion the Xbox as its gaming saviour.

“There was a project that got killed at Microsoft. This project was designed to allow console gamers and PC gamers to interact and battle over a connected environment,” said Sood on his blog. “I’ve heard from reliable sources that during the development they brought together the best console gamers to play mediocre PC gamers at the same game… and guess what happened?”

Here’s where I get that shit-eating grin.

“They pitted console gamers with their “console” controller, against PC gamers with their keyboard and mouse. The console players got destroyed every time. So much so that it would be embarrassing to the Xbox team in general had Microsoft launched this initiative.”

In short: the project was possibly axed because console gamers suck too much.

“You simply don’t get the same level of detail or control as you do with a PC over a console,” said Sood.

But before your butt gets all puckered and dry and you make a beeline for the comment box, that’s not the point of this. The point is that Sood makes a point about Microsoft’s stance on PC gaming. As the experiment shows, the PC is still a solid platform for gaming, and a cross-platform system, console gamers’ suckage notwithstanding, could have really helped everyone realize this.

“…because had they kept it alive it might have actually increased the desire of game developers and gamers alike to continue developing and playing rich experiences on the PC which would trickle down to the console as it has in the past. Instead they wanted to keep an old business model alive, and as a result they are (all) getting attacked by the most unlikely competitor, Apple.” Emphasis mine.

When Apple‘s gaining ground in gaming, you know something’s amiss.

I mean, I personally won’t be giving up the PC as a gaming platform any time soon, but I think Sood is right – Microsoft definitely isn’t attacking PC gaming with the gusto it once was, instead focusing its efforts on the Wii 2 Kinect and whatnot. Yeah, smart move.

What do you think, guys? Should Microsoft continue snubbing the PC in favour of Xbox gaming? It’s obviously the profitable thing to do, but is it the right thing for innovation?

  1. I’ve been a huge gamer of all platforms most of my life, but PC is always my favorite. HOWEVER, with Steam, Blizzard, and EA all making their games run great on both platforms, I have not touched my PC in a long, long time.

    Macs are definitely gaining ground in the gaming world and I will hopefully never have to own a PC again.

  2. I am sad to read that the cross platform gaming environment was axed by Microsoft. That would have been awesome.

  3. Think of it this way. When it comes to gaming on any ‘traditional’ computer, there comes the varying hardware, need for unique drivers, and a whole bunch of crap which terrify the average person. Consoles remove that terrifying feel by offering a single platform, single hardware, and no real need to get into anything technical.

    The PC (And I imply any desktop/laptop computer of any make) is simply terrifying for the average person. Gaming on that platform is still quite large, but it’s more of a niche. That doesn’t make it not profitable; the market just isn’t as large as the console, or casual market.

    As for Apple gaining ground in gaming, I’m not really surprised. Yeah, Nintendo will still be favourably popular, but you will find that the general population just wants one device to handle their day-to-day stuff. Some will take their Nintendo DS’ with them, but you’ll find that most people will take their phone along with them, and that’s it. That’s really the only device people will carry with them on a daily basis. Very few would want to carry two or more individual devices.

  4. Solution: Allow all console games keyboard and mouse functionality through their usb connections. With this access across all platforms there is clearly $ to be made. I agree with Jaycob (see above) on the excessive drivers, hardware, and updates one has to deal with if you game on the PC. Not to mention it’s cheaper to game on consoles.

    However, I’m only going to game with a mouse and keyboard. I use to be a hardcore console fan, especially in the 2D fighting game era. When I switched over to FPS games I never looked back except once when my friends invited me over for a L4D2 shindig on 360. Talk about getting owned. I bet my console friends who were raping me that night $100 each if any one of them could take me on PC. The next week after our LAN par-tay I had the last laugh.

    TF2: Spy for life

  5. The first person shooter comparison is a poor one considering you can buy 3rd party mice and keyboards for most consoles today. This levels the playing field, Then as someone said above you don’t have to worry about varying hardware and so on so because of this the consoles typically have better performance and reliability.

    Computers have all kinds of drivers and other software running in the background that can mess up your game.

    I was a hardcore PC gamer for years, but now I have converted to console gaming and now I can finally get rid of my Microsoft windows and run Linux 100% of the time.

  6. I disagree with Rob. There is no way a console can match a PC in performance unless you are dong as you said, running apps at the same time. I love when console gamers say that their machines are better than PCs bc it’s simply not true. PCs get much much much better frame rates, and can be tweaked for best performance. The consoles cannot, which is a huge disadvantage. Generally if you’re gaming, your computer is going to have better hardware(faster cpu, better graphics card, more RAM) than any console out there. I never bought a console bc they are basically computers now so why buy a lower end computer that I have to be stuck with for years until the next gen console is released. These consoles have processors and graphics cards that are years old compared to computers. Xbox 360 has a triple core processor each running at 3.2ghz, not bad. I’m about to buy a laptop for gaming, I wouldn’t be caught dead with that processor when I can get an i7. So, I’m going to say that MS made the right choice. Also, the console crowd is really immature compared to PC gamers. God, I’m totally biased…

  7. I can live without Microsoft in PC gaming, there are many other companies that do a better job, and their games suck anyway. If I see a game with Live for Windows I won’t purchase it, period. Microsoft is too focused on profit (I realize it’s a business), once they started charging for avatar clothing items and everything else on XBL, they lost me for good. I say good, get out of PC gaming and focus on your shitty console.

    I recently canceled my XBL account and went straight PC gaming and I love it, now my 360 collects dust and I’m happier for it. Map packs and DLC are generally free, the service to connect and play with your friends is free, the community is more mature and the games are cheaper.

    As for Apple, the only reason they are gaining ground is because of Steam, a PC gaming service opening up to that platform. I’m not a fan of Apple at all and it’s laughable that they are thought of as a viable gaming platform. Can you run anything with intensive graphics without purchasing a $1,500 video card from Apple?

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