pc-gaming posts

EA exec: PC gaming could "become our biggest platform"

electronic arts
Electronic Arts wants to make a bet on PC gaming. At least that's the word from EA Games head Frank Gibeau. In a new chat at Gamasutra Gibeau praises the PC platform for gaming, particularly the downloadable business model for selling game titles.

Calling the PC game user base as "gigantic", he states, " ... PC downloads are awesome. ... The margins are much better and we don't have any rules in terms of first party approvals. From our perspective, it's an extremely healthy platform. ... It's totally conceivable it will become our biggest platform." He adds that EA is looking more and more to the free-to-play PC platform, saying, "I think that free to play model is coming to the west in a big way."

While those words sound good, we would also remind Gibeau that in terms of the PC platform in EA's multiplatform games they tend to treat the PC port poorly compared to a game's console counterparts, denying the PC users downloadable content and demos in games like Dead Space 2 and Need For Speed Hot Pursuit.

Interview: We get a new update from PC Gaming Alliance's Matt Ployhar

pc gaming alliance
Last December we were the first web site to conduct an interview with the new head of the non-profit PC Gaming Alliance Matt Ployhar. Since that interview we discovered that two of the organization's founding members, Microsoft and Nvidia, decided to depart the organization (the companies have both not revealed their reasons for their departure).

Last week as part of GDC 2011, the PC Gaming Alliance revealed some details of its latest Horizons report, claiming that PC gaming as a whole generated $16.2 billion in worldwide revenue in 2010, up 20 percent from 2009. Big Download decided to get back in touch with Ployar to find out more on the status of the organization including hints about its upcoming Technical Advisory Board.

Study claims sales of PC gaming-related hardware to total $22 billion in 2011

pc gaming hardware
PC gaming-related hardware sales are supposed to increase 27 percent in 2011 to $22 billion worldwide. That's the result of a new study announced today by Jon Peddie Research. Part of the growth will be in China as that country's internet cafe upgrade their PC hardware in order for them to run newer and more hardware intensive games. Russia is another country that the study claims will be spending more on gaming-related hardware products.

The study also claims that PC gamers in general have an "increasing appetite" for products like "high quality speaker systems, headsets, mice, cases, cooling, and other accessories and customizations." It also claims that interest in 3D gaming continues to grow as does buying monitors with "higher resolution and better color capabilities."

ScentScape may make you smell your PC games

Most of us thing that adding more immersion into PC games means better graphics or sound. But what about the sense of smell? A company called Scent Sciences is trying to sell a product ScentScape that will allow gamers to smell what they are seeing in a PC game.

The ScentScape, which was shown first with little fanfare last month at CES 2011, uses a USB port to plug into your PC. When used by a PC game that's been programmed to work with the ScentScape (and yes, the company is selling an SDK to game developers for that purpose) the product "directs the release of ScentScape scents providing background scents such as pine forest or ocean and from more scene related scents such as flowers and smoke to games or entertainment media." The scents come in a cartriage that supposedly lasts for 200 hours. The price for ScentScape is $69.99 although there doesn't appear to be an online store where you can actually buy the device.

[Via PC Gamer]

Interview: We chat with the new president of the PC Gaming Alliance

In March 2008, the PC Gaming Alliance was formed and introduced with a press conference at GDC. The non-profit group combined PC hardware makers like Intel, Nvidia, AMD and others with game publishers, developers and other interested companies to help promote PC gaming as well as help developers with issues like piracy, minimal hardware configurations for games and others.

Recently the PCGA has had a change in leadership as Randy Stude, the organization's first president, has decided to leave that role. Taking the helm is Matt Ployhar who currently works at Intel but has previously worked at Microsoft in a number of PC gaming related roles. He also describes himself has a passionate PC gamer.

In his first interview since becoming the head of the PCGA, Ployhar tells Big Download how he came to be picked as its new president and his plans for leading the organization.

PC Gaming Alliance appoints Intel's Matt Ployhar as new president

The non-profit group the PC Gaming Alliance has now appointed a new person to head the organization. Today the PCGA revealed that Matt Ployhar has been appointed as its new President. Ployhar's day job is at at Intel where he serves as a strategic planner for the company's Software and Solutions Group. In a message on the organization's web site (in PDF format) Ployhar states that he is "very committed and passionate about growing the relationships necessary within our industry and community leaders to ensure the continued momentum and success of PC Gaming worldwide."

Ployhar succeeds Randy Stude who has served as the PCGA's President since the organization was formed back in 2008. Today's announcement states that Stude will still be an "active member and contributor" to the PCGA.

PC gaming "will always be the place that drives innovation" says Irrational's Ken Levine

Irrational Games may be making titles for multiple platforms nowadays but when the game developer started it was a PC game only creative team (System Shock 2, the Freedom Force games and others). And as far as its founder Ken Levine feels,"... when it comes down to it, as a gamer, I'm a PC." In a guest post on Kotaku, Levine talks about his continued fondness for playing games on the PC, stating, " ... I like the ergonomics of the thing, the mouse and keyboard, the effortless transition from gaming to browsing to typing. I'm an alt-tab kind of guy."

While the column was supposed to be about Levine's views on the future of PC gaming, he admits, " F*** if I know." But he does say that PC gaming " ... will always be the place that drives innovation." He adds, "If you want to know the future of gaming, buy a PC. And pay attention. Because above all, that thing on your desk is a crystal ball."

Big Download's News Bits & Bytes - August 14-15

Wow. It's been such a busy weekend that we had to actually get a Bits & Bytes post up.

Where is the PC press conference at E3 2010?

On Monday, Microsoft will have its big E3 2010 press conference for the Xbox 360 console. On Tuesday, Sony and Nintendo will also have their own press conferences for their consoles. Publishers like EA, Ubisoft and Activision are holding their own press conferences at E3 this week. So where is the big press event at E3 that's just for PC games?

Alienware Arena posed that question to Randy Stude, the current president of the non-profit group the PC Gaming Alliance. Stude states that while that organization has considered holding such a press conference at E3, it has ultimate decided against it. Why? Stude states that E3 is a trade show for retailers and that while console games and hardware are mostly sold in brick and mortar stores, the number of PC titles sold in stores is shrinking rapidly. Stude says it might be time to have an E3-style event just for PC games.

PAX East: Panel on the Future of PC Gaming

At PAX East, just a few hours after NVIDIA announced the launch of the 400 series GPU, a panel comprised of John Kreiner (Terminal Reality), John Abercrombie (Lead Designer at Irrational Games), and Michell Shuster (Co-owner of LanSlide Gaming PCs) came together to discuss the future of PC gaming. Moderated by Jeff Kalles from Penny Arcade, the panel took questions from the audience to figure out where PC gaming is headed, given the trends and approaches publishers are taking combined with the leaps in technology. Although the room was almost filled to capacity with PC gamers and all three speakers are self-described fans of PC gaming, the mood quickly turned a grim comparison with console gaming. It soon became clear that the future of PC gaming was already going through a long, dark and ominous tunnel into the unknown. The only question is whether there's any hope of seeing light at the end of it.
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