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EA wants an open gaming platform

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  • User profile image
    blowdart

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/technology/7052420.stm

    Sorry, open? This is the EA who wanted to run their own servers for xbox live so they could charge users more, on top of a live subscription?

    Yea, sure, you want an open platform for the consumer. Right.

  • User profile image
    Massif

    You're missing the point, EA wants to make all the same money and slash development costs by only having to develop for one platform.

    Of course, this misses the point that the main reason EA is such a big company is no-one else (read, not many other people) can afford to develop cross-platform. Do EA really want to give up their big-fish status by removing the barriers to their competition?

  • User profile image
    Massif

    creditcard wrote:
    Well at least for PCs, if you code to OpenGL you can have games that run on all the major platforms.


    <needless fun poking>
    Well, to be honest, if you code for DirectX you have games that run on all major entertainment platorms. Tongue Out
    </needless fun poking>

    <more rational point>
    And if you code for XNA you can have games run on quite a significant share of the entertainment market.
    </more rational point>

  • User profile image
    figuerres

    creditcard wrote:
    
    Massif wrote:
    
    creditcard wrote:
    Well at least for PCs, if you code to OpenGL you can have games that run on all the major platforms.


    <needless fun poking>
    Well, to be honest, if you code for DirectX you have games that run on all major entertainment platorms.
    </needless fun poking>

    <more rational point>
    And if you code for XNA you can have games run on quite a significant share of the entertainment market.
    </more rational point>


    Yes I think EA is hitting themselves now for coding against DirectX since they are porting most of their games to MacOSX now.


    how does OGL solve the problem of having one code base to run?
    sure OGL can talk to the display system...

    but what about oh minor things like the file system? , thread management? , the network stack? and a few other things like that?

    I hate to say it but a package like .net is still needed... perhaps not XNA or .Net per se but someting like them....

    think about how much .net elevates the coders job away from the low level / platform calls....

    XNA might just be the ticket have Display bits that are optimized C/C++ and asm code and System bits that are the same but for the file system, process management and the network stack....
    then use managed code to knit them to gether ....
    have one common framework with a runtime for each OS you want to run on....

    BUT!  IMHO game ports tend to suck, I have seen games ported for example from consoles to the pc but the control setup really did not work unless you had a gamepad.... they did not allow for the use of keyboard and mouse.

    things like that and attempts at emulating another systems hardware make for not so good ports....

  • User profile image
    Bas

    creditcard wrote:
    The problem with XNA and DirectX is your stuck to Microsoft platforms, so I think your success and failure is up to Microsoft much more then if you use cross platform and/or standardized tools.


    Seeing how Microsoft owns an overwhelming majority of the available gaming platforms, I think your success is pretty safe on a Microsoft platform.

  • User profile image
    Sabot

    I didn't realise that when you 'buy' a game online from EA it only stays active on your account for only six months, after that time it disappears, so you have to pay for it again for it to become active.

    This is my experience with downloaded BF2142. I had such a bad experience with the user-account upgrade recently I have decided that this is the final straw for me and EA.

    If I am going to be milked like the cash-cow I obviously am, I at least want to have a high-level of service.

    My advice to EA is to look at Stream for a decent downloader service ... in other words, forget about having their own, someones already done it and very well.

     

  • User profile image
    figuerres

    creditcard wrote:
    
    figuerres wrote:
    
    creditcard wrote:
    
    Massif wrote:
    
    creditcard wrote:
    Well at least for PCs, if you code to OpenGL you can have games that run on all the major platforms.


    <needless fun poking>
    Well, to be honest, if you code for DirectX you have games that run on all major entertainment platorms.
    </needless fun poking>

    <more rational point>
    And if you code for XNA you can have games run on quite a significant share of the entertainment market.
    </more rational point>


    Yes I think EA is hitting themselves now for coding against DirectX since they are porting most of their games to MacOSX now.


    how does OGL solve the problem of having one code base to run?
    sure OGL can talk to the display system...

    but what about oh minor things like the file system? , thread management? , the network stack? and a few other things like that?

    I hate to say it but a package like .net is still needed... perhaps not XNA or .Net per se but someting like them....

    think about how much .net elevates the coders job away from the low level / platform calls....

    XNA might just be the ticket have Display bits that are optimized C/C++ and asm code and System bits that are the same but for the file system, process management and the network stack....
    then use managed code to knit them to gether ....
    have one common framework with a runtime for each OS you want to run on....

    BUT!  IMHO game ports tend to suck, I have seen games ported for example from consoles to the pc but the control setup really did not work unless you had a gamepad.... they did not allow for the use of keyboard and mouse.

    things like that and attempts at emulating another systems hardware make for not so good ports....


    OpenGL is just a part (important part) in game development libraries. There are a lot of options for the other parts. There is also OpenAL for audio (Unreal/Quake uses this), fmod (most Blizzard games use this). There is also SDL (many many games use this).

    The problem with XNA and DirectX is your stuck to Microsoft platforms, so I think your success and failure is up to Microsoft much more then if you use cross platform and/or standardized tools. If being stuck to Microsoft platforms is fine with you, then ok. It's up to the developer, but for a project so complex like a video game I personally would want my code to transcend CPU platforms and also operating systems.


    fine, but read what I wrote carefully...  as you wrote: to be platform indipendant you need more than just OGL, xna is tied to MSFT and windows but the concept of xna could be done w/o that...
    say a version of MONO with the libraries you refer to for example...
    I would think it would not be to hard to fork that into a killer system.
    understand that one of the problems in writing great stuff today is the amount of leg work you have to do leanring a bunch of tools and getting all of them working together etc...
    and if you write in C / C++ then you have the pointer and memory stuff to deal with that can be better handled in a "Managed Code" system like .Net or Mono.

    I am just observing what each thing brings to the table... and how XNA wraps up several things with one set of tools and formats and api calls... to help the game developer focus on the game development.

  • User profile image
    Ray6

    creditcard wrote:
    

    Yes I think EA is hitting themselves now for coding against DirectX since they are porting most of their games to MacOSX now.


    Not sure they're hitting themselves really, since they're going to be using the Cider framework to do the Mac ports.  The Mac games will be the Windows code with Cider wrapped around it to provide Mac compatibility.

    Win32 appears to be a cross-platform API ... who knew?




  • User profile image
    Ray6

    creditcard wrote:
    
    Yes, but I'm going to guess that EA had to pay a pretty penny for Transgaming's services. Cider is basically Cedega technology bundled with the game.



    .. and I imagine that they're probably be paying Microsoft too.

    creditcard wrote:
    
    It's also hard to predict how the game will behave when you port it, what the performance will be, etc. I'm not saying OGL is perfect, but I think it's much easier to support multiple platforms with it.


    I have no idea to be honest ...

    creditcard wrote:
    
    Inevitably DirectX will be work on multiple platforms if Microsoft wants to it not though, since the demand for video games on Linux and OS X is so high and so many existing frameworks the major game development companies use are build with DirectX. But again, if you want truly portable code and you want your code to be easily adaptable to any platform, look elsewhere.


    Well that's the thing though. You say that demand for games on Linux and MacOSX is high, but in relation for the demand for games on Windows, how big is that demand in terms of numbers willing to put down cash for the game? The chances are with Macs now running Windows natively, and packages like Cider available, I'm not sure that we'll see a huge increase in native Mac games. I imagine that the same really goes for Linux. Is a shame though.

  • User profile image
    Rossj

    Ray6 wrote:
    
    Win32 appears to be a cross-platform API ... who knew?


    It gets worse (or better depending on how much you hate it)

  • User profile image
    littleguru

    OGL and DX are very similar. I mean both run on the same hardware on the same pipeline... If you can master the math for game developing it shouldn't be that hard to switch. You could even create a layer upon your graphics library (may it be OGL or DX) and use that...

    No big deal. Look at how Unreal Tournament can run on OGL and DX.

  • User profile image
    ScanIAm

    Rossj wrote:
    
    Ray6 wrote:
    
    Win32 appears to be a cross-platform API ... who knew?


    It gets worse (or better depending on how much you hate it)


    Dear god, why would you implement the most obnoxious, confusing, and awful method of coding for objects on the Mac?

  • User profile image
    Rossj

    ScanIAm wrote:
    
    Rossj wrote:
    
    Ray6 wrote:
    
    Win32 appears to be a cross-platform API ... who knew?


    It gets worse (or better depending on how much you hate it)


    Dear god, why would you implement the most obnoxious, confusing, and awful method of coding for objects on the Mac?


    Portability apparently.

    You know that strange churning feeling you have in your gut right now? Been there - done that, but I got better when I learnt that nearly nobody uses it Smiley

  • User profile image
    Ray6

    Rossj wrote:
    
    ScanIAm wrote:
    
    Rossj wrote:
    
    Ray6 wrote:
    
    Win32 appears to be a cross-platform API ... who knew?


    It gets worse (or better depending on how much you hate it)


    Dear god, why would you implement the most obnoxious, confusing, and awful method of coding for objects on the Mac?


    Portability apparently.

    You know that strange churning feeling you have in your gut right now? Been there - done that, but I got better when I learnt that nearly nobody uses it


    That article is from 2004.

    I think we can safely assume that COM is not going to get a toehold on the Mac platform. Not sure if I'll be saying the same for .NET a few years from now ...



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