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Activision Wants Consoles To Be Replaced By PCs 344

Posted by Soulskill
from the oppose-on-principle dept.
thsoundman writes with this excerpt from thegamersblog: "We live in a world where we have multiple platforms for gaming: PC, PS3, 360, Wii, etc. Each platform has varying amounts of power when it comes to playing games. Activision, one of the leading cross-platform publishers, wishes to move away from the 'walled gardens' set by Sony, Microsoft and Nintendo. ... [Activision CEO Bobby] Kotick’s solution is to turn to the PC, where it can set its own model for pricing — not unlike what Blizzard has done with World of Warcraft and Battle.net. Kotick stated that Activision would 'very aggressively' support the likes of HP and Dell in any attempt at making an easy 'plug-and-play' PC that would hook up directly to the TV."
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Activision Wants Consoles To Be Replaced By PCs

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  • Bobby Kotick again (Score:5, Insightful)

    by SquarePixel (1851068) on Thursday July 08, 2010 @03:56AM (#32836478)

    While moving away from consoles 'walled gardens' sounds great and the summary makes it sound all nice and everything, this is Bobby Kotick [wikipedia.org] were talking about. The CEO of Activision who's primary goal is to milk as much money from computer games as possible by any means necessary.

    In the article he is angry that while people pay for XBL subscriptions, Activision doesn't get any share of that. Basically he wants people to pay Activision a monthly subscription for online services, on top of the normal price for games. While it makes sense for games like MMO's where the developer needs the monthly subscription to keep up their massive server farms and keep creating new content, the usual multiplayer games don't require that. Just see Valve and TF2 or countless amount of other multiplayer games.

    Forget about "opening up consoles", making the world a better place, ending wars and famine, he just wants more money.

    • by sznupi (719324) on Thursday July 08, 2010 @04:13AM (#32836550) Homepage

      More to the point, he is surely frustrated that he can't really pursue his own 'walled gardens' on consoles; for that he needs 'open' PC.

      • by Yvanhoe (564877)
        Isn't that the same kind of people who was praising consoles for their lower piracy ratings ? In a few years he will complain that PCs are too open and allow to easily crack games...
        • by Z00L00K (682162)

          It will probably come and go in waves - forcing customers to upgrade all the time.

          Customers are like cows - but milked for money in any conceivable way. Soon there will be copyright infringement suits on dices too.

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by TechnoFrood (1292478)

      the usual multiplayer games don't require that. Just see Valve and TF2 or countless amount of other multiplayer games.

      Thats simple to get round, you just don't release a dedicated server for your game, and force everyone to use your matchmaking service for P2P play.

      • by SquarePixel (1851068) on Thursday July 08, 2010 @04:30AM (#32836636)

        This still affects MW2. Recently they released a second multiplayer level DLC and changed some of the gamemodes (added a "pure" gamemode with no killstreak rewards).

        First of all if you want to play the new maps you have to play them in specific gamemode that rotates between team deatchmatch, demolition, sabotage and all the other modes. You cannot select the gamemode you like, but have to play those you hate too. Of course this isn't told on the sales page, but at least this time around I knew it will be the same thing and did not buy the DLC. They will probably be available in a month or two for the other gamemodes, but the funny thing is that those who don't have the DLC cannot join the games that have the DLC. This devalues the game for the old players, as they have much less people to play with and possibly can't even find a game to join.

        Secondly, they removed Capture The Flag gamemode to make room for the "pure" gamemode. It was my favorite one with Sabotage, but now I cannot select it. Obviously this would had not been a problem with dedicated servers where the server admin could choose it freely.

        Then theres also the cheaters.

        It just sickens me how they ruined otherwise good multiplayer game in their pursue for more cash.

        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by kevinNCSU (1531307)

          First of all if you want to play the new maps you have to play them in specific gamemode that rotates between team deatchmatch, demolition, sabotage and all the other modes.

          This is either intentionally misleading or you are misinformed. As long as everyone in your party has the new maps they will show up in all the game modes (at least all the standards like TDM, domination, ground war, CTF, ect). What they did was ADD a NEW game mode that allowed you to play ONLY the new maps and that game mode rotated between the various game types.

          This devalues the game for the old players, as they have much less people to play with and possibly can't even find a game to join.

          This is just absurd. you clearly have no concept of the size of the player base. Most of my friends got the DLC but a few don't and we convince

    • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday July 08, 2010 @04:21AM (#32836588)

      Forget about "opening up consoles", making the world a better place, ending wars and famine, he just wants more money.

      You sound very cynical. I think Bobby Kotick has learned that being evil is bad and he wants to redeem himself by making the gaming experience easier for children. He's merely thinking of the children when he wants to make games like Armed and Dangerous easier to experience with a PC environment.

      P.S.
      I am NOT Bobby Kotick. I'm just an AC who is giving an objective, unbiased opinion.

      • He's merely thinking of the children when he wants to make games like Armed and Dangerous easier to experience with a PC environment.

        Here's an idea: Make the retail game or the basic download stuck in paintball mode so it can get that E10+ or T rating. Then put a coupon in the box for DLC with the blood in it, which (unlike stuff hidden on the disc) is rated separately.

    • by FriendlyLurker (50431) on Thursday July 08, 2010 @04:28AM (#32836624)

      The CEO of Activision who's primary goal is to milk as much money from computer games as possible by any means necessary.

      In this case, the point is moot. Anyone who supports an open standard platform for gaming gets my vote, greedy or not. Walled gardens, especially when they are the dominant garden in the park, are never good for consumer choice or price in the long run. Sure Kotick can charge more on the PC than on some propriety gaming platform where he must follow orders. But he also can't exclude competition or dictate any terms to anyone else... so go to it Activision, I really hope you succeed in making a plugin and play gaming PC platform based on open standards!

      • by ultranova (717540) on Thursday July 08, 2010 @04:52AM (#32836728)

        In this case, the point is moot. Anyone who supports an open standard platform for gaming gets my vote, greedy or not. Walled gardens, especially when they are the dominant garden in the park, are never good for consumer choice or price in the long run.

        One should also remember that consoles hold back the development of games. Even something like XBox 360 has only 512 megs of memory, which severely limits how complex gameworlds it can represent; just compare with the 2 gigabytes minimum on newer PCs, and 6-8 gigs or more on high-end machines.

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by bloodhawk (813939)
          And the various levels of hardware in PC land hold back development even more. Very few games can afford to shoot for the leading edge of hardware as it simply restricts their gaming audience too much. An X-box will set a gamer back $300-$500 (depending on accessories), a modern gaming machine while relatively cheap nowadays is going to cost you at least as much and is a constantly shifting target that forces gamers to upgrade regularly (I am one of them), with a console I can spend more on games with sligh
          • by icebraining (1313345) on Thursday July 08, 2010 @05:58AM (#32837040) Homepage

            Very few games can afford to shoot for the leading edge of hardware as it simply restricts their gaming audience too much.

            Bullshit. PC games provide ways to reduce the load for older PCs. I could play COD4 in my P4 with a two year old $75 graphics card. Now that I have a quadcore and a HD5770 (total PC price: $450) I play it with much higher resolution, particles, etc.

            People are not forced to upgrade significantly more regularly than with consoles. They simply have the option to do so, and enjoy better graphics if they choose to.

            • by bloodhawk (813939) on Thursday July 08, 2010 @06:41AM (#32837254)
              So even with an only 2 year old graphics card you have to reduce performance, 2 years is a way to frequent upgrade. This is the whole damn problem, if you want to keep up with games in the PC world you have to upgrade or have the game operating at less than the designed intent. I can afford to keep up with that, I actually upgrade at least once a year but I have friends that can't afford to upgrade there 3,4,5 year old machines and find it almost impossible to play newer games. the 360 came out in 2005, the PS3 came out in 2006. Even games purchased in 2011 or 2012 will work the same on a 2005 model as it will on a 2012 model. get a gaming machine from 2007 or 2008 even and you will find you have to turn down the graphics on modern games.
            • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

              by jythie (914043)
              That 'reduction' also comes with a price. Higher development and testing costs. One of the advantages of producing for a known hardware set is you can put those resources into further developing the game rather then making it work across a wider range of configurations. Support for multiple resolutions alone can cause costs to balloon and gets even messier when you give the ability to switch particular types of graphics off an on. Each of those configurations needs to be tested and bugs only present in
        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          by gknoy (899301)

          consoles hold back the development of games. Even something like XBox 360 has only 512 megs of memory, which severely limits how complex gameworlds it can represent; just compare with the 2 gigabytes minimum on newer PCs, and 6-8 gigs or more on high-end machines.

          Bullshit.

          Having a restrictive (yet capable) standard sandbox enables a developer to focus on working within those constraints, which can allow them to exercise creative freedom. Look at some of the most interesting and innovative games recently --

      • by Eraesr (1629799) on Thursday July 08, 2010 @05:02AM (#32836764) Homepage
        Bobby Kotick's ultimate goal isn't an open platform. His goal is a platform that's very much closed off, but where he determines the rules instead of Microsoft. The reason he roots for the PC as a platform to do this on is because it's the only platform that is open enough for him to start up his own walled garden.

        It's bad news all-round. If every publisher started up it's own variant of XBox Live, you'd have to pay subscription fees for every publisher, maybe for every game. You'd be working yourself into serious debts if you want to sustain (multiplayer) access to a variety of games from different publishers.
        • by KDR_11k (778916) on Thursday July 08, 2010 @06:14AM (#32837132)

          To be fair this whole subscription service mania is a result of revenues not growing as much as costs so sooner or later their whole operation will crash down anyway (they'll focus on delivering fewer and fewer titles that must all be huge hitters but epect failures to eliminate publishers going that route) and people who are less hostile towards the customer and blowing less money on nonsense like cutting edge graphics (of course you need decent graphics but you don't need expensive cutting edge ones) will take over. While Activision et al build bigger and bigger blockbusters countless avenues for cheaply made games are springing up everywhere. The future of gaming is not ridiculous prices, it's cutting back the superfluous costs and delivering reasonably priced games with good enough graphics and good fun (which isn't terribly expensive).

        • Price competition (Score:3, Informative)

          by tepples (727027)

          If every publisher started up it's own variant of XBox Live, you'd have to pay subscription fees for every publisher, maybe for every game.

          You already see this with MMORPGs. But publishers will try to keep prices low even if only to attract price-conscious customers. Look at Activision with every Blizzard-brand game other than World of Warcraft: anyone with a valid serial has at least 5 years of free online play.

          • I'm not sure I'd bet 100$ on that. They're already putting the non-terran campaigns as expansions in SC2, I'm fully waiting for other weird moves of the sort.

      • Sort of (Score:5, Insightful)

        by Moraelin (679338) on Thursday July 08, 2010 @05:06AM (#32836784) Journal

        Well, sort of. Actually, not really. Someone who explicitly just wants to replace Sony's walled garden with his own, doesn't exactly strike me as a sort of freedom fighters. In fact the whole situation kinda gives me the mental image of fighting Apple's walled garden by replacing it with Microsoft software.

        The fact that the PC hardware itself will be open is effectively just a way to pass that unprofitable part to someone else. PC's commoditization just drove the profit margins of PC vendors into the basement and allowed MS to stick to the part where it can rake in the taxes like a king. In the end it's one reason why MS did better than apple, back in the late 90's and early 2000's.

        Activision here wants the same thing. It wants the likes of Dell and HP to do the work of building a cheap PC that's kinda like a console, but not charge royalties for it, so he can get the money instead.

        And generally I would question the logic between giving your vote to someone just because they intend to replace another asshole. The history is full of examples where that was a bad idea. I could even Goodwin it by mentioning a certain election in '32 where some people thought they'll show the established parties and coalitions by voting for the new and vocal third party, so to speak. Yeah, that went so well. But otherwise from Lenin to Yuan Shikai to ancient greek tyrants (yeah, most of those used populism to subvert the self-serving oligarchy that passed for ancient greek democracy), we have some millennia of people who offered to save us from they tyranny of someone else by replacing it with their own.

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by mcvos (645701)

          Someone who explicitly just wants to replace Sony's walled garden with his own, doesn't exactly strike me as a sort of freedom fighters.

          I don't know. Plenty of freedom fighters throughout history overthrew a brutal dictatorship just to institute their own. (Most didn't have the decency to tell you this up front, however.)

          • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

            by Moraelin (679338)

            Pretty much my point actually. I'm pretty much disinclined to believe any claim to be a freedom fighter if it involves his own benevolent autocracy (or even oligarchy) at the end, and much less so from someone who is candidly honest up front about being just pissed off that he's not the king collecting taxes off the land. I mean, I appreciate the honesty, but you won't find me with a torch and pitchfork in his mob at the castle gates.

  • by JohnRoss1968 (574825) on Thursday July 08, 2010 @04:00AM (#32836498)

    Kotick stated that Activision would 'very aggressively' support the likes of HP and Dell in any attempt at making an easy 'plug-and-play' PC that would hook up directly to the TV."

    Perhaps they could call it an X-Box.

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by paganizer (566360)

      Sounds to me that they would do better by talking to video card manufactures; if everything was based on a video card, it wouldn't really matter what sort of PC you had; add TV out hardware (if you can find a video card without the hardware already there) and use the GPU for the games.

      • by Hi_2k (567317)
        Modern video cards already have TV out hardware; DVI -> HDMI adapters come in the box of nearly ever video card I've seen in the past 2 years. Seeing more computer manufacturers go out of their way to make certain they've also got sound cards with S/PDIF digital out and that such are attached to the video cards for full HDMI awesomeness is the important step
        • Modern video cards already have TV out hardware; DVI -> HDMI adapters come in the box of nearly ever video card I've seen in the past 2 years.

          And way before that, my Geforce 4 MX came with S-Video out. TV out became common at least eight years ago.

        • by tepples (727027) <{tepples} {at} {gmail.com}> on Thursday July 08, 2010 @07:20AM (#32837452) Homepage Journal

          Modern video cards already have TV out hardware; DVI -> HDMI adapters come in the box of nearly ever video card I've seen in the past 2 years.

          The impression that I get from reading comments to other PC vs. console articles is that gamers tend to play games on secondary TVs, not the main living room TV, because someone's watching a show like American Idol on the main living room TV when they want to play. These secondary TVs are often $10 thrift store CRT SDTVs that don't take HDMI. However, they do take VGA through a $40 adapter cable [sewelldirect.com] that produces composite video and S-Video.

      • by thijsh (910751)
        Yeah, console grade A/V cards... Where you can plug them into the lowest grade shit computer and the GPU takes care of the baseload, both in graphics as well as game processing (reducing the CPU load as much as possible). The graphics card needs to be fed with data and then operates on it's own, with the HDMI to connect to the TV. The inclusion of audio processing in the GPU also takes care of the problem that multi-channel audio is also handled by the CPU way too often in cheap PCs. Basically the A/V card
  • by Chrisq (894406) on Thursday July 08, 2010 @04:02AM (#32836508)

    Activision would 'very aggressively' support the likes of HP and Dell in any attempt at making an easy 'plug-and-play' PC that would hook up directly to the TV."

    So would I .... it would like a great MythTV box

  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday July 08, 2010 @04:21AM (#32836586)

    There are no shortage of companies that want to tinker and salivate over how Blizzard's business model works. It's a game, direct to consumer, that has a monthly recurring fee with a very nice retention rate. So far, everyone has been absolutely god awful at pulling this off. The desiccated and dismantled battlefield of competitors goes to show, Blizzard has magic that isn't easy to reproduce

    I think the closest analog that Activision could come to is Steam. Yet again, deeply entrenched business model, direct to consumer with a nice retention rate.

    What Activision wants is control over the entire food chain. They are neither ready, nor well developed enough to jump from a business model they know incredibly well, to what is working on a, very profitable basis, but across a very, very narrow list of businesses that pull it off.

    The best thing Activision could do right now is ditch the idea of a PC under the tv. People for generations of games have made a very clear delineation for where they want their pc's and where they want on their consoles. And any company such as a Dell or an HP would be complete morons to go after that failed market again, and again.

    What Activision needs to do, is sit down with whoever they have doing arcade games. Take that, pop out a Steam like client, and make it a)not a crippled, bloated piece of shit b) not DRM'd to the point where you're screwing with your call center numbers by increasing traffic off a small step into the market and finally c)make it compelling.

    God the number of amazing indie developers out there that would kill to have Activision's resources behind their projects, without Activision being a general corporate pain in the ass... Go for the small market see what you can do there, it's your test pool. If you can't work out strategy there, then you're not going to do it where the big fish play. Remember, small nimble teams with experience.

    Then again, since when has Activision listened to anyone screaming "NO THAT'S A HORRIBLE IDEA, WOULD YOU PLEASE NOT DO THAT" and then watched whatever they've tried doing bomb, and tumble into disaster.

    • by smartr (1035324)
      I think Kotick has his head in the right place at the right time on this. I think the games themselves were more forcefully designed to be on a computer versus a console - not that the consumer wants that in the first place. Pretty much, short of one screen co-op games (Nintendo's forte), the difference between a console game and a pc game is that that pc games tend to default to mouse and keyboard input, while consoles choose a joystick. If you look at the number of internet tv boxes popping up (roku, boxe
      • by tepples (727027)

        Pretty much, short of one screen co-op games (Nintendo's forte), the difference between a console game and a pc game is that that pc games tend to default to mouse and keyboard input, while consoles choose a joystick.

        That and consoles have cryptographic lockout and policies against small, home-based businesses. Say my small company has made a working PC game that could be the next great one-screen 4-player party game, yet it isn't an "established" enough company to seek a license from Sony or Nintendo. (We considered XNA, but RROD and no procedural audio killed that.) Now where do we publish it, or how do we get it ported to a platform on which we can publish it?

        • 2Dboys did manage to get World of Goo on wiiware, but it was well after the game sold like hotcakes with free ponies on PC/Mac/Linux.

  • 640p halo limits to monster numbers, world sizes and artistic visions.
    Glad someone is thinking about new games on this generations gpu's with all the new features.
    Get the income stream. back to the producers not to some middle empire feeding of users and creators.
  • by d_jedi (773213) on Thursday July 08, 2010 @04:39AM (#32836678)

    Ex. Modern Warfare 2:
    "Criticism has arisen of changes made to the PC version of Modern Warfare 2 including the lack of dedicated servers, latency issues of the listen server-only IWNET, lack of console commands, lack of support for matches larger than 18 players, and inability to vote towards kicking or banning cheating players immediately"

    Remove the benefits of PC gaming, and gamers won't game on a PC..

    • inability to vote towards kicking or banning cheating players immediately"

      This part is especially annoying. Thanks to Killcam, you can see how the other person killed you. Often it is blatantly obvious that someone is cheating. Yet nothing can be done (not even if you are the one hosting the game, i.e. you are the server). Thats another thing. It never asks you "do you want to host the game". It simply finds the best upload/lowest latency connection and hosts the game there.

      Also, without hosting your own servers you cant make your own rules. That means if all you wanna do is

      • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

        by j4s0n (1121943)
        There's a program called MW2SA that you can use that works completely on the router side that interprets incoming packets and allows you to ban ip's of users through steam's web interface. I use it all the time and love the shit out of it. Seriously. If it was a girl, I'd stalk her until she court orders my ass. The only thing is that you MUST be host, but you can get host pretty easily.
  • I mean isn't that basically what he's describing here?

    • by tepples (727027)
      For the price of one Mac mini, you can buy two PS3s. Perhaps he's talking about ION nettops such as Eee Box and Aspire Revo, except with a more powerful GeForce than the 9400 in the ION chipset and a more powerful CPU.
  • Wait, Activision? (Score:2, Informative)

    by _KiTA_ (241027)

    Wait, Activision? They're still in business? I would have thought Robert Kotick would have ran them into the ground by now. God, he's getting slow in his old age.

    What's that? He's trying to turn Battle.Net into "Facebook for Gamers?" He's going to require everyone playing WoW to use their real names on the official forums (and in the in game friends' list), so that the next time you piss off some mentally unhinged social reject you can figure that out by the knife embedded in your front door and the cr

  • This would be great, IF this gaming PC could play titles from various platforms. OTOH it would require some degree of technical know-how to maintain such a PC, I mean look at how we currently tweak to get a game running on occasions. And what about infections?

    A Linux based box, for stability and security, that runs a sandbox for Win games, perhaps with something like www.reactos.org, with direct hardware acceleration to avoid such bottlenecks.

    Hardware is cheap nowadays so multi-processors and a few GiB's of

  • This Kotick guy wants something he can't have unless he ponies up the investment himself. He needs to talk to fabs and board manufacturers (mother-, graphics-, sound-, and peripheral-) to get large quantities of identically designed and spec'd hardware which conforms to the x86 architecture. He needs to make sure it runs an operating system his games will run on, namely Windows. Unfortunately, Windows doesn't differentiate between different x86-compatible hardware, so any and all hardware which conforms can
    • by Renraku (518261)

      A build your own console thing wouldn't be a horrible idea in a perfect world. You could have a big list of 'approved' parts and just switch them out as usual. Some games would require 'advanced' parts, some would require 'basic' parts. You could maybe construct it for $100 on the cheap end, and $1000 on the expensive end. You could replace parts as often as you wanted to play new games. It could have a Steam-like system for downloading games and connecting with your friends.

      This is just like the idea

      • Piracy isn't an issue with subscription based services now. WoW has a 0% piracy rate, as do other subscription-based games. Hell, even if there is piracy of the client that's still one more subscriber you wouldn't have.

        I'm surprised you have to pay for the WoW client; Eve does fine without making you pay for the client or any patches / expansions. Still, if it ain't bust...
    • by Zironic (1112127)

      All he really wants is for the major PC manufacturers to put together a HTPC with a gaming sticker on it, ideally the manufacturers and the gaming industry would would agree on standard specs and Activision would be able to say "All our games run on Dell HTPC Gamerz Edition".

      There would obviously not be any difference between the Gamerz Edition and anything you could build yourself with parts from Newegg, the point would just be to aggressively market the idea that you can play TV-games with a PC. The main

  • by ScaledLizard (1430209) on Thursday July 08, 2010 @05:08AM (#32836790)
    ... they could provide their games on bootable Linux discs. No install needed, no patches possible, full control over the player's experience, with the added bonus of being able run the games in Linux. Just a dream? Also no need to update DirectX.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Shikaku (1129753)

      Hell they could release something like SteamOS (name just for explanation) where it installs like Wubi and can be updated/patched from Windows but to play you have to boot into their OS.

    • by jimicus (737525)

      They'd be creating a support nightmare for themselves, unless they did something like put a bit of code on there forcing the disk to only boot on "approved" systems, because hardware support for bleeding-edge hardware (particularly graphics cards) can be a bit patchy at the best of times.

      There's a special word for a box with a limited range of hardware that runs games directly from a read-only media such as CD or DVD. Now, what was that word again?

  • green eyed monster (Score:4, Insightful)

    by bloodhawk (813939) on Thursday July 08, 2010 @05:14AM (#32836820)
    What you have here is serious jealously of Xbox Live and soon PSN as they look to monetise it. They are seeing the huge profit MS is starting to turn on XBL (while at the same time forgetting the years of investment ie losses it took to get there) and just like a petulant child they are trying to figure out some easy way they can claim a slice of this pie (while at the same time not actually do anything to earn it).
  • by ScaledLizard (1430209) on Thursday July 08, 2010 @05:25AM (#32836874)
    "We want an open, standard platform which is much easier than having five which are not compatible,"
    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/technology/7052420.stm [bbc.co.uk]
    • They should dust off Trip Hawkins 3D0 idea....
    • by jimicus (737525)

      It's called an abstraction layer, and nothing's stopping the games developers from funding a cross-platform layer which does that. The difficulty is in adding a layer of abstraction, making that layer reasonably platform-independent and still seeing half-decent performance.

  • Are you sure about this strategy? World of Warcraft is running out of ideas as fast as they are subscribers. Modern Warfare 2's PC version is already played by fewer people than Counter-Strike, an eleven year old fan mod. Starcraft 2 is not subscription based and don't get me started on Guitar Hero 40.

    To beat money out of a PC franchise, it needs to be good. Ask EPIC about how well games that compete with Halo compete with Valve.
  • an easy 'plug-and-play' PC that would hook up directly to the TV."

    Sounds just like the ZX Spectrum I had in the 80s.

  • A quiet PC with HDMI for output, usb gamepads for input, and a ton of emulators is already the perfect console; simple & reliable, yet flexible and upgradable, no rats nest of cables, no CDs to get damaged (no moving parts at all, if you can afford the latest stuff). Add XBMC and you have all the living room technology you need in a single box :)

    On a tangent, I ponder the possibility of having a standard virtual machine designed for games -- having a ton of emulators to convert from consoles to the PC

    • by grumbel (592662)

      The problem isn't getting the hardware, but getting the combination of software and hardware. If you go the TV PC way you will quickly find out that most software doesn't actually work with a gamepad or only works after quite a while of configuration with joy2key and friends. Searching for patches and entering cd-keys is also not fun when you are holding a gamepad. And keyboard/mouse is just unpractical on a couch. To make the PC on your TV work for the masses you would need it to be cheap, silent, standard

  • Didn't the XBox do exactly that?

    Okay, it was a rather underpowered PC, but still...

  • Talking about walled gardens, perhaps we can also replace the iPhone and iPad by PCs?

  • After reading TFA I feel I need to poke one's eyes out...

    One does realize, doesn't one, that Activision is interested in units sold, regardless of one's platform? The more platforms one can compile one's game engine and downsize their artwork for, the more likelyhood one has of selling a game to another one.

    PS: Where did one learn to write?

  • I just wish there was something similar to Mythbuntu for gaming PCs.

    I want to be able to install it on a home brew computer or net top, plug in my usb game pad, and navigate to a simplified package manager (that just shows the games section...there would also be an update manager and package manager with a full list of packages if you switch to desktop mode) where I can install some of the many awesome OSS games / Emulators / etc available and just play them.

    There are a lot of USB Gaming devices (thank you

  • Not exactly the same thing (as others have pointed out, XBox = PC with a TV-out - it just gets abused whoever makes it into a vendor-locked system) but anyone remember the Amstrad Mega-PC? Huge ordinary PC (of the 386-era, I think) with a little slidy door that revealed a Megadrive slot and turned the computer into a Megadrive (Don't think it was emulation, just a switch to an internal Megadrive board).

    I would have killed to have the money for one of those at one time.

  • Funny, I was just thinking the other day (while de-malware-izing my sister's computer for the fifth or sixth time...2000+ trojans, backdoors, and security-disabling programs; a task that left the computer itself barely able to run) "I wish that for this sort of person, there was the computer-equivalent of an xbox: a decent PC with good video and O/S hard-coded in, untouchable without the addition of something physical or at least without the use of a dongle, perhaps with a hard drive for storage of document

  • dead end (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Tom (822) on Thursday July 08, 2010 @07:32AM (#32837542) Homepage Journal

    what a piece of nonsense.

    We don't need a new computer type. We need a little bit of innovation regarding connections.

    If you have a computer in your computer room, and a flatscreen TV in your living room, why can the computer not use the TV as an output device? Wire, wireless, don't care. Why invent a new device if it does nothing you don't already have?

"Look! There! Evil!.. pure and simple, total evil from the Eighth Dimension!" -- Buckaroo Banzai

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