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PC Games (Games)

90 Million Gaming PCs By 2007 72

Joystiq has commentary on research by ananlyst group IDC, which states that 90 million 'gaming ready' PCs could be in homes by the end of 2007. From the article: "IDC expects out of those 90 million units that 67% will be Vista Basic and 30% will be Vista Premium (both private consumer versions). Vista requires the PC to have a semi-competent graphics processor, able to push DX9, just to function properly. This could mean the PC gaming market will enjoy more potential customers, especially among more graphically intense programs."
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90 Million Gaming PCs By 2007

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  • Will I have to get Vista to run Zork?
  • A lot of them use Windows 2000 for the extra speed over XP. Claiming they're going to upgrade to an even more bloated OS is just flat-out wrong. And preinstallation doesn't count, most gaming PCs are custom built.
    • by CTD ( 615278 ) on Thursday November 30, 2006 @04:10PM (#17054646) Homepage
      When you are talking about 90 million users, you aren't talking about hardcore gamers with gaming PC's -- you are talking about Joe and Jane Normal, who just want a computer to do basic work and keep the kids quiet/busy at home. That's the mass market -- and if you can deliver quality games that function on those computers (that are bought stock at the retail stores) you are delivering to a huge potential audience -- which makes great business sense.

      It's not about those of us who will build our own computers, it's about the Eloi who think Geek Squad is a lifesaver. :)
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by 0racle ( 667029 )
      I believe Vista is supposed to be able to unload a lot of itself when necessary freeing up the resources it held. On top of that, only Vista is going to have DirectX 10. Gamers will buy it eventually.

      Now what the hell is a gaming PC? I have a Sempron 2500+ with 1GB ram an ATI X1600 and a Creative XFi. Is that a gaming PC? It must be, thats all it's used for. If I found an old Pentium 166 and just for games, is that also not a gaming PC?
      • by KDR_11k ( 778916 )
        Anything that doesn't use onboard graphics or hardware that's older than maybe 4 years probably counts as a gaming PC.
      • I believe Vista is supposed to be able to unload a lot of itself when necessary freeing up the resources it held. On top of that, only Vista is going to have DirectX 10. Gamers will buy it eventually.

        Two words: DRM, WGA

        The problem is not as much the suitability of Vista for gaming (we won't really know that until it gets tested), it's the fact that it's the first time that when you buy a PC you pay for it but somebody else controls it.

        Unfortunatly for most people, they will only realize how far they have be

        • "Personally i intend to get a Wii for my gaming needs (up to now i've always played games on the PC and never got a console) and phase out gaming on the PC (basically i'll stick with XP and older games and will never buy a game that requires DirectX 10"

          Does the Wii run Eve-Online? Half-Life 2 Episode One? If not, then I'm still going to have to suck it up and run Windows. It sucks, and I'd give it up in a second, but the PC is still the best gaming platform out there. I've never owned a console, and alt
          • Does the Wii run Eve-Online? Half-Life 2 Episode One?

            At this point, there's no technical reason why it couldn't, they just aren't available for the Wii.

            However, that's a fair trade, I suppose, since there are more games on consoles that aren't available for PCs than vice versa, and the imbalance only grows.

            Sure, you might not like Zelda, Gears of War, Guitar Hero, or any of the other things that make game consoles worth owning but if you really have diverse gaming tastes the PC loses hands down.

            This isn't t
      • by ADRA ( 37398 )
        "only Vista is going to have DirectX 10. Gamers will buy it eventually."
        Or revolt. I've bought a Wii, so Microsoft and their ever more pointless (to me) OS can just go to hell =)
        • only Vista is going to have DirectX 10. Gamers will buy it eventually."
          Or revolt. I've bought a Wii, so Microsoft and their ever more pointless (to me) OS can just go to hell =)


          Good point. I bought a Wii because I won't have an HDTV until they drop in price (around 2009) and just have given up on PC gaming.

          My next laptop will be Linux - it currently is WinXP - but if you force me to upgrade, you lose me as a customer.
    • A lot of them use Windows 2000 for the extra speed over XP
       
      Sure and that's worked due to dx9 being available for 2k as well as xp. dx10 is Vista only. Crysis for one, and I'm sure there are plenty more, will only really shine under dx10. So, yes, many of the gamers are going to switch.
    • Another example of just because you do it doesn't mean that lots of people do it.

      According to the valve hardware survey [steampowered.com] about 1 percent of respondents uses windows 2000.
  • 50 percent of these "gaming" computers will not be used to do anything but run email and Internet explorer.

    Just more proof that "gaming ready" is another bullshit term used by media groups to signify that they might possibly run a game one day. Besides which this all assume Vista works properly and actually is able to shut off the gui when you start a game. If it can't do that, all these "gaming ready" pcs well be "gaming euniched" PC as it will require close to double what we had before.
    • by KDR_11k ( 778916 )
      Well, it prevents PC makers from putting onboard graphics into their systems while bumping up the MHz to claim their system is really powerful (while the user whines on the game developer's forum that the game won't run on his new PC).
  • What Potential! (Score:3, Insightful)

    by AKAImBatman ( 238306 ) * <akaimbatman&gmail,com> on Thursday November 30, 2006 @04:10PM (#17054640) Homepage Journal
    This could mean the PC gaming market will enjoy more potential customers

    (Emphasis mine.)

    The PC Gaming market already "enjoys" a rather massive "potential" market. Yet PC sales are quickly falling to the wayside in favor of console gaming. In fact, most PC Games are either being ported to consoles or are ported from consoles. Which means that there is little advantage to being a PC Gamer unless you're into MMOGs.

    A better headline would be, "Casual gaming market gets bigger! Game studios still have no idea how to make money off them!" :-P
    • not just MMOs (Score:4, Interesting)

      by snuf23 ( 182335 ) on Thursday November 30, 2006 @04:23PM (#17054908)
      "Which means that there is little advantage to being a PC Gamer unless you're into MMOGs."

      Or RTS games that actually have a decent interface. Or just about any kind of strategy game in general such as Civilization or Heroes of Might and Magic. Or if you want to play FPS games with a mouse (Wii MAY help to change this, but not PS3 or Xbox 360).
      • by Thraxen ( 455388 )
        Honestly, having played both platforms extensively, I really don't think FPS games are bad at all on consoles. The aiming and turns are usually slower paced than with a mouse, but they aren't bad at all. But since nearly everyone is using the same controls there is no disadvantage. It's not the same as an RTS where you may get bogged down with a bunch of extra menus that aren't necessary on a PC. It's just harder to aim. If anything, it could be argued that makes it a bit more realistic than the point
    • by KDR_11k ( 778916 )
      The PC Gaming market already "enjoys" a rather massive "potential" market.

      Not really, many PCs were bought with no understanding of the concept that there's more than MHz to a computer. Many use integrated graphics chips which means they won't run anything that was released in this century.

      Yet PC sales are quickly falling to the wayside in favor of console gaming.

      I'm not seeing that, the PC is still much more popular, partially because console games are just fucking expensive in comparison (1/3 to 1/2 more
      • http://www.gamespot.com/news/6162272.html?sid=616 2 272&part=rss&subj=6162272 [gamespot.com]

        "While The NPD Group's retail tracking service shows what appears to be a decline in PC game sales, critical developments in the PC games industry, specifically the Internet, is fundamentally changing the PC software industry," Anita Frazier analyst at NPD said in statement. "With the increase in high speed Internet access, not only are users purchasing their games online, they are also willingly paying additional recurring

      • Yet PC sales are quickly falling to the wayside in favor of console gaming.

        I'm not seeing that, the PC is still much more popular, partially because console games are just fucking expensive in comparison (1/3 to 1/2 more expensive) and drop in price slowly or even never.

        I have to look no further than my local Babbage's to refute this. When it opened at my mall in 1992, about 2/3 of the store was stocked with PC games (and even applications like MS Word and OSes like OS/2 and Windows 3.1). Now, 2/3 of the

    • There's one reason for this, and one reason only. Nobody likes configuring controllers in arcane menus. I have no problem with it, but I can write software:

      10 print "hello"
      20 goto 10

      See, not one bug! But for the rest of the populace, they turn on the game, they start mashing buttons, nothing happens, they turn off the game. Never mind that every controller under the sun has a different placement of button 1, button 2, etc....

      rhY
  • But how many of these gaming PCs will be connected to a 23" or larger monitor and thus suitable for single-head multiplayer with four gamepads in a USB hub? Right now, consoles seem to have an oligopoly on single-head multiplayer games such as Smash Bros., Tekken, Mario Party, Bomberman, and the like, and Windows seems to have a monopoly on independent titles. So what is an independent developer of single-head multiplayer games to do?

    • by snuf23 ( 182335 )
      "So what is an independent developer of single-head multiplayer games to do?"

      This is exactly the type of game that are well suited for console downloads (i.e. Xbox Live arcade).
      PCs are not good for single-head multiplayer gaming. They are well suited for complex online multiplayer gaming such as MMOs.
      • by tepples ( 727027 )
        This is exactly the type of game that are well suited for console downloads (i.e. Xbox Live arcade).

        But is this market open to independent developers? If not, then which market is?

        • by jchenx ( 267053 )

          But is this market open to independent developers? If not, then which market is?

          Which market are you referring to? The PC or console? (The grandparent mentioned Xbox Live Arcade)

          The PC market is definately open to independent developers, if you're okay with developing on Windows. Just go to the bargain bin aisle for games in Walmart/Target/Best Buy, and you'll see a ton of low budget, indie-developed titles. The problem is that there isn't much of a market for party games on PCs, because of the problem you

    • by KDR_11k ( 778916 )
      So what is an independent developer of single-head multiplayer games to do?

      Make and release the games normally, maybe adding an online/LAN option. Hey, it works in Japan.
    • by crossmr ( 957846 )
      This could be a niche market for open source guys to get involved in. We already know you can easily hook up 4 gamepads (or as many as you want really) to a PC, so its a matter of having some games. Drive an open source project towards gaming glory and you're done. I think the reason it hasn't picked up mainstream is simply because people don't see the computer attached to the TV. I think making one or two really solid "Party" type games and you might see a shift.
      • There have been these kinds of games in the paste for the PC. If you've ever played Atomic Bomberman it fits the bill. (And I really did hitch up a couple gamepads and play 4 player in that game a few times, it was a lot of fun)

        But the PC in general just isn't really suited to that type. Just like consoles are clunky with RTS games or games with a lot of inventory management. Every PC comes with a mouse that makes those actions simple and consoles don't. You can plug four gamepads into a PC, but most people
        • by crossmr ( 957846 )
          Except the reason consoles aren't suited to RTS play is because they don't take advantage of a mouse. They can't mimic that control properly. A PC has no such hardware limitation. Just because people don't use it to play party games doesn't make a PC itself unsuited for them. Plugging 4 gamepads in to it is no different than have 4 controllers plugged in to a console.
          • > Except the reason consoles aren't suited to RTS play is because they don't
            > take advantage of a mouse. They can't mimic that control properly. A PC has
            > no such hardware limitation.

            Neither do a lot of consoles. My PS2 uses a USB mouse (and a USB keyboard) just
            fine, thank you. Not a lot of PS2 games take advantage of that, but that's the
            fault of the individual games, not a basic fault of the hardware.

            > Just because people don't use it to play party games doesn't make a PC itself
            > unsuited
            • by crossmr ( 957846 )
              Except you can plug your computer into the TV, just like my media center PC is. If you want to get snippy about technicalities you might want to check yourself before posting. The mouse and keyboard are only a very recent addition to the line-up of console accessories and as you said, nothing really takes advantage of them. But PCs have been plugging into TVs (I can remember as far back as 89/90 seeing a PC plugged into a TV and they've been using Joysticks and gamepads for a long time as well. So its not a
    • FUCK 23" monitors! I've got a projector hooked up to my PC, 1964, and we EACH have a 50" screen for Mario Kart. Plus the projector was cheap. Something like $600!!

      We have AWESOME Mario Kart tournaments at MY house, and I've NEVER OWNED a console.

      Before you get all high and mighty on the old pirate, let me say that I HAVE purchased Mario Kart 64 (used) for 4.99 down at gamestop. So Nintendo got their duckets outta me! LOL

      rhY
      • by tepples ( 727027 )

        I've NEVER OWNED a console.

        Before you get all high and mighty on the old pirate, let me say that I HAVE purchased Mario Kart 64 (used) for 4.99 down at gamestop.

        So how did you copy the ROM image from the cartridge into your PC? Don't most N64 copiers require the console?

        Besides, I was talking about PC native titles, that is, products offered for sale to the public consisting of a CD-ROM or DVD-ROM containing an executable for Microsoft Windows.

        • I didn't copy it from the console to the PC. I downloaded it, but I figured since I already PURCHASED it, owning a copy I could actually use was no big deal. Go ahead, put me in prison!

          rhY
          • I downloaded it, but I figured since I already PURCHASED it, owning a copy I could actually use was no big deal.

            Judge Rakoff in UMG v. MP3.com [wikipedia.org] disagreed with your reasoning. So why aren't there any multiplayer games for home theater PCs that don't require either 1. multiple PCs and multiple monitors or 2. piracy?

            • That's actually a really good question. I really STILL like Need for Speed III. That's a fun split screen two player game... But it's SERIOUSLY dated at this point...

              rhY
  • There are a good number of onboard DX9 graphics that meet Vista specs. Onboard graphics like Intel's which can barely "run" any current games.
  • Why would any gamer want bloatware that would completely destroy their CPS?
  • Cause I aint buying a name brand computer for the rest of the ATX cases usable lifespan. or as long as they sell MOBOs to consumers.

    Seriously.

    I love to build, customize, and tweak my own computers. It's fun, challenging, and way way cheaper, with a more powerfull end result.
    Although in the past, my homebrews were like the Millenium falcon (had to kick em to get them to boot windows, but I think it's cause they were self aware....) They allways bring a much higher Performance : Price, have allways been roc
    • by dch24 ( 904899 )
      I couldn't agree more. I'm currently running two cases: An original PC-XT case (heh. built like a tank), and a medium tower (originally a 386). I've got an Athlon X2 in the PC-XT (took a little tweaking since they moved from AT to ATX, but thank goodness for two double-height drive bays). And I've got a Core Duo in the tower.

      I would have kept the power supplies, but they weren't ATX. That was a sad day.
    • Right on. Real gamers build their own PCs. :)
  • The operative word in the article is there COULD be 90 million gaming PCs running Vista by the end of 2007. The reality is Justin Murray (the article's author) needs to put down the pipe! Just like the PS/3--no one I know is excited about Vista. Quite the opposite. The talk I hear is about switching to a Mac/OSX or trying Linux on the desktop. The DRM controls in Vista are crazy. Vista turns a PC (Personal Computer) into a CCC (Corporate Controled Computer.) Vista will not bolster the PC gaming marke
  • We could know that couldn't we? When Intel..known of its integrated CRUD on most cheap motherboards and notebooks! Came with their Dx9 videochip, weak...very weak but it was just made to be able to run Windows Vista!

  • It's just the focus is placed on the fanciest graphics. The big publishers are losing out on a lot of income to people that want simple "pick up and play" games they could use to leverage against the exploding budgets of AAAAA++++ titles.
  • So more and more systems will be able to play more powerful games that require better video cards.

    But who is really going to make use of that? People who are very casual gamers are notlikley to find many (or any) games that they want to play that needs all that extra power anyway - those people are playing poker online today just fine thanks.

    Someone looking for more graphical oopmh is probably going to buy a console anyway, as that's where many games are headed for first runs now. If you had the choice be
    • Because I can make my own content with oblivion on a PC.
      • I agree that's a great point for why you'd go for a PC version, but it still seems like the majority of the market would rather have the simplicity and bullet-proofness of the console version...

        Not to mention that content makers are more limited in number over producers - the real answer to this issue is to allow the ability for user-defined content to be used by console users as well. There is no reason this cannot be so with all next gen consoles being able to download material online.
        • Do you seriously think they would let you put advanced content on a console without them getting a fee from you or rights to what ever you want to put on the console.
  • Now all they have to work on is getting more than 1% of that number to even want to play games.

    I mean lets be honest here, PC gaming has pretty much gone to the farm beyond RTS, MMOs, and decent FPS where even those are starting to be taken over by the systems. Do analysts really think with the recent trend downward for gaming sale on the PC for anything other than casual gamers that they will ever open up a bigger market?

    People who want to game will buy the system for it. The fact is, most people use c

  • and replacing them with gaming consoles.

    But, an analyst can predict anything.

    Doesn't mean it will come true, but they can predict it.

    Amazingly, they are rarely punished for being totally out to lunch on their predictions.
  • by StikyPad ( 445176 )
    This is ricockulous. The status quo for graphics processors won't increase just because of Vista. Pretty much every new computer in the past year has shipped with a GPU which satisfies the requirements/recommendations for Vista, save some business machines, but they're not exactly a potential gaming market to begin with.

    So Vista definately won't push the envelope for consumer hardware, but more importantly, hardware still ages. In about two years (+/- 1yr), today's bottom end Vista-capable card will be s
  • What exactly is a "gaming PC"?

    Is it a PC that can play games? If so, then any PC dating waaaay back to the 8086 was a "Gaming PC". What sort of non-news announcement is this?

    Reminds me of the old "Multi-media level" rating which failed pretty quickly as soon as Pentium computers became affordable as they all had CPU, memory, graphics, CD-ROM and sound capabilities far beyond the highest rating.

    Heck, I even remember when DOOM (the first one) was used as benchmarking program, which quickly became outdated a
  • Thats estimating that 97% of those computers will have Vista by the end of 2007. That seems like a tall estimate. I doubt that many companies and gamers will switch to Vista so quickly.

    I could see companies switching to Vista if they have a huge need for it specifically next year. I can't see that many gamers upgrading to Vista till a game requires it, like DX10, which isnt XP compatable.
  • IDC expects out of those 90 million units that 67% will be Vista Basic and 30% will be Vista Premium (both private consumer versions). Vista requires the PC to have a semi-competent graphics processor, able to push DX9, just to function properly. This could mean the PC gaming market will enjoy more potential customers, especially among more graphically intense programs.

    Should read "... Vista Home Premium and above requires the PC to have a semi-competent graphics processor, able to push DX9, to display the

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