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Gunstar Green
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Re: Random Gaming Thoughts

by Gunstar Green Thu Sep 24, 2020 3:05 pm

MrPopo wrote:If you mean "sell a stripped down PC as a game console" then that's just asking for headaches. The advantage of the console model is it is a completely walled garden where they can ensure that people can't install random bullshit and fuck up their machines. Not to mention that massively opens the door for piracy on the system.


Yeah, Steam tried that a couple years back and it didn't exactly work out. I actually had a little Alienware Alpha Steam Machine from a Best Buy sale and I really liked it as budget game machine for the living room TV but ultimately it wasn't a console, it was a PC with all the pros and cons that come with being a basic PC but with laptop-esque customization limitations meaning it didn't appeal to either audience.
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isiolia
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Re: Random Gaming Thoughts

by isiolia Thu Sep 24, 2020 4:08 pm

Gunstar Green wrote:Yeah, Steam tried that a couple years back and it didn't exactly work out. I actually had a little Alienware Alpha Steam Machine from a Best Buy sale and I really liked it as budget game machine for the living room TV but ultimately it wasn't a console, it was a PC with all the pros and cons that come with being a basic PC but with laptop-esque customization limitations meaning it didn't appeal to either audience.


The big problem Steam Machines ran into is that consoles are specialized hardware with a deliberate business strategy behind them. For instance, the Xbox Series S/X and PS5 will, at launch, be the cheapest way to get that level of game performance. The entire console will cost less than the graphics card you'd need for a comparable PC build. That's a combination of engineering, business partnerships and contracts, and (one assumes) the willingness to sell the hardware at a loss. That's what makes the limited functionality worth considering.

Ultimately, SteamOS itself could be installed on a lot of hardware, but there was little reason to use it outside of just Big Picture Mode anyway. Trying to get anywhere near the price of consoles, like you mentioned, just meant that the cheaper Steam Machines were just budget SFF PCs, not really that great for gaming.
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RCBH928
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Re: Random Gaming Thoughts

by RCBH928 Fri Sep 25, 2020 1:58 am

MrPopo wrote:It depends on what you mean by "put Windows on it". Architecturally the One was running on the same base as Windows with the frontend being Xbox specific. I would not be shocked to find the Series also uses the Windows foundation.



The same idea but that Windows foundation can run Windows games too. A "dedicated" Windows machine if you may with a console interface. They can have their Xbox Store gatekeeper where any games bought run on both platforms and they get their cut. Logically, people should opt for buying from the Xbox store because buying from Steam/Epic/GOG means Windows-only but XB Store will run on both. This should increase Microsoft's revenue since now they gain customers from Steam. It should also crush Nintendo/Sony because of the huge gaming library. I won't act like I am smarter than Microsoft executives, I am just wondering...

As for consoles being resourceful hardware, I do not see that is that is the case. Back in the day when PS2 ran on 300 MHz CPU it put out graphics as a capable PC. Now the Xbox has AMD RDNA 2 GPU and 8-Core Zen 2 CPU which sounds like a beefy PC hardware, the only part I don't get is why does this capable hardware costs as low as a chromebox ?

In the past, consoles were weaker hardware hence low price but high performance. Now its powerful hardware yet low price, and performance is on par with gaming PC.
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isiolia
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Re: Random Gaming Thoughts

by isiolia Fri Sep 25, 2020 10:22 am

RCBH928 wrote:As for consoles being resourceful hardware, I do not see that is that is the case. Back in the day when PS2 ran on 300 MHz CPU it put out graphics as a capable PC. Now the Xbox has AMD RDNA 2 GPU and 8-Core Zen 2 CPU which sounds like a beefy PC hardware, the only part I don't get is why does this capable hardware costs as low as a chromebox ?

In the past, consoles were weaker hardware hence low price but high performance. Now its powerful hardware yet low price, and performance is on par with gaming PC.


It goes back to the big reason why MS won't just let you run Windows on an XBox. They are selling them at a loss. This is nothing new, as most consoles are a launch. Which is in turn why they tend to limit functionality. Remember how the PS3's "Other OS" mode got stripped out? Likely had a lot to do with people buying racks of them for computing clusters. Something Sony probably wasn't keen on when they were losing $240 or $300 on every one, depending on model. Likely the same reason that Sony dropped a lot of the media player focus on the PS4, or even backwards compatibility - the point of them subsidizing the cost of the hardware is to make money on software.

To be fair, it likely costs MS less to build a Series X than a similar PC would cost with off-the-shelf parts. Buying a single CPU and GPU at retail is a little different than having one tailored to your needs and buying ten million of them. Still, right now, a comparable PC would cost twice as much, probably more. That'd make a $499 Series X that runs regular Windows apps very attractive simply as a PC. Not just a gaming PC, but, most people in the market for a PC under $1200 or so. Maybe MS could still make that money back, but it'd get a lot more complicated, and good luck finding one in stock to actually play games on.
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RCBH928
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Re: Random Gaming Thoughts

by RCBH928 Sat Sep 26, 2020 1:25 am

What you said makes perfect sense and I knew they were losing but not $300/c I imagined more $50-100/c. Again i say this, I am not after Windows on Xbox I am after Xbox ability to run Windows games. If Valve were able to run Witcher and DOOM on Linux, I guess Microsoft is more than able to run Windows games on their Xbox platform, even if that meant developers will have to do little effort on their side to "port" the games.

Which brings me to another random thought, why does Valve care so much about Linux?!
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Re: Random Gaming Thoughts

by isiolia Sat Sep 26, 2020 9:56 am

The degree that Valve cares about Linux is kind of related. Windows has a variety of application types it can run. Not just in the sense that you might have things running on Java or Python or something, but that there are different native applications too. One of the newer ones is Universal Windows Platform, as I'd mentioned earlier, which allows for that write-once, run on Xbox and Windows sort of deal. Except, it leaned heavily on being distributed on Windows only through Microsoft's store (among other restrictions), and in turn, that was the only application type available through their store. Those restrictions have been softened somewhat since. However, at the time, Valve (and others) saw this as a long-term threat to their business model. Windows already has a version (then) or mode (now) where it only will run software from the store (same, really, as OS X defaults to). So, they saw a possible future where that'd become standard, effectively writing out third party storefronts for (at least) new software.

Hence, SteamOS and ramped up Linux support. Valve, at the very least, wants it to be viable enough that MS would think twice about locking Windows down, since the customers affected would have someplace else to go...where Valve is ready to take their money instead :lol:
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RCBH928
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Re: Random Gaming Thoughts

by RCBH928 Sun Sep 27, 2020 12:57 am

isiolia wrote:The degree that Valve cares about Linux is kind of related. Windows has a variety of application types it can run. Not just in the sense that you might have things running on Java or Python or something, but that there are different native applications too. One of the newer ones is Universal Windows Platform, as I'd mentioned earlier, which allows for that write-once, run on Xbox and Windows sort of deal. Except, it leaned heavily on being distributed on Windows only through Microsoft's store (among other restrictions), and in turn, that was the only application type available through their store. Those restrictions have been softened somewhat since. However, at the time, Valve (and others) saw this as a long-term threat to their business model. Windows already has a version (then) or mode (now) where it only will run software from the store (same, really, as OS X defaults to). So, they saw a possible future where that'd become standard, effectively writing out third party storefronts for (at least) new software.

Hence, SteamOS and ramped up Linux support. Valve, at the very least, wants it to be viable enough that MS would think twice about locking Windows down, since the customers affected would have someplace else to go...where Valve is ready to take their money instead :lol:


hmmm...it makes sense but I think Valve is very wrong. Instead of people opting to install Linux to download Steam games, I think they will just download games from the Windows store, much less hassle. From the developers perspective, why build non-Universal Windows Platform or a Linux supported version? Universal Windows Platform is where all the money is and supports 2 platforms.
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isiolia
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Re: Random Gaming Thoughts

by isiolia Sun Sep 27, 2020 1:48 pm

RCBH928 wrote:hmmm...it makes sense but I think Valve is very wrong. Instead of people opting to install Linux to download Steam games, I think they will just download games from the Windows store, much less hassle. From the developers perspective, why build non-Universal Windows Platform or a Linux supported version? Universal Windows Platform is where all the money is and supports 2 platforms.


I'd say it mostly comes down to one of the reasons to have a app repository/storefront in the first place: verification. UWP applications may be more restricted in what they can do. As that wiki article points out though, MS has listened to concerns, and expanded what UWP supports, and allows the Windows Store to serve up other program types now too.

Valve also isn't really wrong. Or, at least, it's not a bad thing for them to work on having a viable alternative to gaming on Windows. Nice to have as an option, if not as a fallback in case MS ever restricts things on Windows. Figure, if MS actually did place limits on software like that, it'd probably mean a lot of older software from any source would no longer work. So while people may not swap to Linux just so they can buy something on Steam, if swapping to Linux meant regaining access to hundreds of games in their Steam Library, a lot more would likely do it.
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RCBH928
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Re: Random Gaming Thoughts

by RCBH928 Mon Sep 28, 2020 12:15 am

isiolia wrote: I'd say it mostly comes down to one of the reasons to have a app repository/storefront in the first place: verification. UWP applications may be more restricted in what they can do. As that wiki article points out though, MS has listened to concerns, and expanded what UWP supports, and allows the Windows Store to serve up other program types now too.

Valve also isn't really wrong. Or, at least, it's not a bad thing for them to work on having a viable alternative to gaming on Windows. Nice to have as an option, if not as a fallback in case MS ever restricts things on Windows. Figure, if MS actually did place limits on software like that, it'd probably mean a lot of older software from any source would no longer work. So while people may not swap to Linux just so they can buy something on Steam, if swapping to Linux meant regaining access to hundreds of games in their Steam Library, a lot more would likely do it.


Well, Whatever Valve's intentions are I am glad its happening for the simple reason that I am rooting for Linux to become more mainstream and have bigger support. I am really the kind of pro-privacy guy that hates when a corporation has a monopoly. A FOSS 1:1 alternative for Windows will be amazing, Linux problem though is its very fragmented with every group of programmers build their own custom version of it.

As for gamers, it can not be a negative. I wonder if that software magic from Valve can work on MacOS too.
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Re: Random Gaming Thoughts

by BoneSnapDeez Tue Sep 29, 2020 1:34 pm

Okay so some Vita games don't allow me to take screenshots.... And now I discover that some screenshots contain watermarks. What the hell?!
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