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Notch: Windows 8 could be "very, very bad for indie developers"

onQ123

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May 1, 2010
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Mojang boss joins Valve and Blizzard in concern over Microsoft's new OS

Mojang
Markus "Notch" Persson, the creator of Minecraft and founder of Mojang, has echoed Valve and Blizzard on the negative repercussions of Windows 8 for developers.

In an interview with the Reddit community, Notch predicted a bright future for independent game developers as long as there are "open and free" platforms to support their work. However, he believes that Microsoft's plans for Windows 8 could be a serious hindrance.

"If Microsoft decides to lock down Windows 8, it would be very, very bad for Indie games and competition in general," he said. "If we can keep open platforms around, there's going to be a lot of very interesting games in ten years, mixed in with the huge AAA games that we all love."

The debate around Windows 8 picked up after Valve's Gabe Newell voiced his concerns at the recent Casual Connect conference, calling the new OS, "a catastrophe for everybody in the PC space." Blizzard's Rob Pardo agreed with Newell via Twitter, claiming that Windows 8, "is not awesome for Blizzard either."

http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articl...ndows-8-is-very-very-bad-for-indie-developers
 
Jul 15, 2004
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I don't know an awful lot about the eco-system that MS have planned if I'm honest...

it sounds like everyone fears that Microsoft is trying to create an Xbox-style walled garden marketplace for the PC... is that really well-founded?

Is this essentially about the Windows Marketplace?
 

LukasTaves

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Dec 14, 2011
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I can understanding W8's app store being bad for competing stores, but i can't see at all why it would be bad for indies themselves...

If anything it should be the opposite with no approval needed... I mean, just look at the indie scene on the ios app store.
 

Drazgul

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Aug 31, 2010
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I can understanding W8's app store being bad for competing stores, but i can't see at all why it would be bad for indies themselves...

What, they're just gonna allow everything to be published in their app store, free of charge? Doesn't sound like the Microsoft I know.
 

jbug617

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Jan 8, 2012
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I don't get why he would be scared, Microsoft is not going to stop Steam from running on Windows.
 

Somnid

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Aug 9, 2006
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Eh? More development choices, more transparent approval system and less of a platform holder take probably means it's better than any currently existing marketplace. It's like saying the Apple App Store was bad for indies because it's not open.
 

DTKT

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Apr 1, 2011
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Eh? More development choices, more transparent approval system and less of a platform holder take probably means it's better than any currently existing marketplace. It's like saying the Apple App Store was bad for indies because it's not open.

Pay for patching? That doesn't sound that great for an indie dev.
 

spwolf

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Feb 15, 2007
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Eh? More development choices, more transparent approval system and less of a platform holder take probably means it's better than any currently existing marketplace. It's like saying the Apple App Store was bad for indies because it's not open.

i think the point was that before you could do whatever you wanted... so it was as free as free could be free... now it is locked. This is for Metro.
 

Dipswitch

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May 14, 2009
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Can someone please explain these concerns to me? I'm rolling with Windows 8 no matter what, but I'm at a loss as to why three separate developers/studios have come out against it in recent days.

Especially considering the desktop is there and is not being locked down in anyway as far as I know.
 

KageMaru

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Oct 6, 2010
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Are companies forced to sell through the Windows 8 app store? I know very little about the OS.
 

~Kinggi~

Banned
Oct 22, 2006
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Are companies forced to sell through the Windows 8 app store? I know very little about the OS.
Wouldnt that mean an internet browser couldnt exist? I dont get it, will windows automatically detect transaction based pages and ban them? Or do they require all apps to have a ms store signature to be able to be installed?
 

charsace

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Mar 23, 2007
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The problem that these guys have, and aren't saying, is that the market place is integrated into Windows. IE isn't the best browser, but its the most used because it comes with the operating system.
 

spwolf

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Feb 15, 2007
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Can someone please explain these concerns to me? I'm rolling with Windows 8 no matter what, but I'm at a loss as to why three separate developers/studios have come out against it in recent days.

Especially considering the desktop is there and is not being locked down in anyway as far as I know.

yes, but MS is pushing Metro not Desktop... so yes, they are closing it down a lot more than where Win7 was.

Now if Metro had an option to install games from anywhere, then it would be no difference, but Metro is locked down.
 

jbug617

Banned
Jan 8, 2012
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Are companies forced to sell through the Windows 8 app store? I know very little about the OS.

no. Microsoft is also having an app store. The way they are trying to get people to put stuff on there is by taking less once something sells over $20,000 (Normal would be 30% and after 20k it will be 20%).
 

Dipswitch

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May 14, 2009
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yes, but MS is pushing Metro not Desktop... so yes, they are closing it down a lot more than where Win7 was.

Now if Metro had an option to install games from anywhere, then it would be no difference, but Metro is locked down.

But Valve isn't going to produce Metro games/apps I assume? Neither is Blizzard. Notch I can see maybe falling into that camp, but even then, he could elect to just make a windows installation package.
 

brotkasten

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Sep 4, 2009
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yes, but MS is pushing Metro not Desktop... so yes, they are closing it down a lot more than where Win7 was.

Now if Metro had an option to install games from anywhere, then it would be no difference, but Metro is locked down.

You can still install and put on the desktop whatever you want. No matter where you bought it.
 

LukasTaves

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What, they're just gonna allow everything to be published in their app store, free of charge? Doesn't sound like the Microsoft I know.

Sorry, i worded that badly.

I meant that it's not like on XBLA for instance where either a publish or Ms have to pick your game, or even steam where they have to agree to publish your game.

You pay the fee, and as long as your game complies with the rules you are in.
 

Somnid

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Aug 9, 2006
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Pay for patching? That doesn't sound that great for an indie dev.

There is no pay to patch on the Windows Store.

i think the point was that before you could do whatever you wanted... so it was as free as free could be free... now it is locked. This is for Metro.

You can still do that or you can use Metro which has much wider visibility.
 

charsace

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Mar 23, 2007
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yes, but MS is pushing Metro not Desktop... so yes, they are closing it down a lot more than where Win7 was.

Now if Metro had an option to install games from anywhere, then it would be no difference, but Metro is locked down.

Metro is an online store so of course its gonna be locked down. The problem is that it automatically becomes a huge competitor because its integrated into the OS. People don't have to go out and explore when they can easily fire up an app store the moment they start up their system.
 

Zaptruder

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Jun 7, 2004
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As long as the Windows marketplace is just a tile that you click on, and Steam and Blizzard, and Mojang can have their own marketplace tiles... then I honestly don't see a problem.

OTOH, if integration is deeper, and interaction with W8 regularly shunts you towards the Windows 8 marketplace, then yeah, that's a lawsuit waiting to happen.
 

Einbroch

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Mar 24, 2009
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no. Microsoft is also having an app store. The way they are trying to get people to put stuff on there is by taking less once something sells over $20,000 (Normal would be 30% and after 20k it will be 20%).
Wait. And this is bad...how? Not saying that you're saying it's bad, but more competition and more money to developers is a good thing.
 

LukasTaves

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Dec 14, 2011
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Pay for patching? That doesn't sound that great for an indie dev.

That's for 360, in the W8 app store you don't have to pay for updates. And they are a lot less restrictive about update sizes and rate too.
 

Solid warrior

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Jul 15, 2009
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I don't know an awful lot about the eco-system that MS have planned if I'm honest...

it sounds like everyone fears that Microsoft is trying to create an Xbox-style walled garden marketplace for the PC... is that really well-founded?

Is this essentially about the Windows Marketplace?
Well, It seems that they're scared of the Windows Store. Their concerns would be well-founded in 1 condition. If MS doesn't allow other digital stores (Steam, Origin, etc.) to open in Windows RT (ARM tablets) for example.

Otherwise, I don't see the point of making such negative comments about Windows 8.
 

Berordn

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Mar 18, 2010
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Wait. And this is bad...how? Not saying that you're saying it's bad, but more competition and more money to developers is a good thing.

The default UI is Metro, similar to the Xbox dashboard and their UI on tablets and smartphones. There's still a desktop, but Metro also replaces the Start Menu and a few interface functions. Apps for Metro are a lot like smartphone apps, being limited to a particular API and only running in certain environments, which Microsoft can lock down to their own store. Desktop apps will still be available through any means, but Metro (and Microsoft's default app store) will be prevalent and locked down throughout the whole system.
 

ultim8p00

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Apr 26, 2008
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You can still install and put on the desktop whatever you want. No matter where you bought it.

This is my understanding as well, and restrictions only come into play when using metro/windows store-designed software. So don't use it and stick to downloads as usual from the internet. What's with all the bitching from devs?
 

Serialxp

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Jun 23, 2011
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God, there is a app store in Windows 8, only for metro apps, but the desktop aplications can be distribuited/instaled as aways. I can´t see the problem here.
 

charsace

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Mar 23, 2007
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Wait. And this is bad...how? Not saying that you're saying it's bad, but more competition and more money to developers is a good thing.

Remember Netscape and Mosaic web browsers? MS is gonna make something that is integrated into the OS. This is why people are mad. I don't think it really has anything to do with locking anything down. In truth I think the other retailers want MS to stick to making the OS and not create an app store. Looking at Metro it seems like something that could really take off.


This is my understanding as well, and restrictions only come into play when using metro/windows store-designed software. So don't use it and stick to downloads as usual from the internet. What's with all the bitching from devs?
The guys that are mad are the ones that have online stores.
 

tci

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Apr 7, 2010
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Metro is an online store so of course its gonna be locked down. The problem is that it automatically becomes a huge competitor because its integrated into the OS. People don't have to go out and explore when they can easily fire up an app store the moment they start up their system.
Valve,Blizzard can easily create a Metro app that links to Steam or whatever.

This could potentially be great for indie devs. They have a platform they can be promoted on, just like on Android/iOS. Nothing makes them go Windows only.
 

clashfan

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Sep 20, 2006
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Well, It seems that they're scared of the Windows Store. Their concerns would be well-founded in 1 condition. If MS doesn't allow other digital stores (Steam, Origin, etc.) to open in Windows RT (ARM tablets) for example.

Otherwise, I don't see the point of making such negative comments about Windows 8.

Their concern is if you want to sell a metro style app/game you have to use the windows 8 app store. I can see their point but like alot of people say, the iOS app store has been pretty good to indie developers...

Of course desktop apps/game will not have that restriction.
 

Visualante2

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Oct 20, 2011
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I think these devs really over estimate how many people are going to buy 8. Just because it's cheap doesn't mean people are going to buy it. People aren't stupid.
 

DTKT

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Apr 1, 2011
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I think these devs really over estimate how many people are going to buy 8. Just because it's cheap doesn't mean people are going to buy it. People aren't stupid.

Haha.

People tend to buy the next shiny thing.
 

SonofdonCD

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Feb 11, 2005
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yes, but MS is pushing Metro not Desktop... so yes, they are closing it down a lot more than where Win7 was.

Now if Metro had an option to install games from anywhere, then it would be no difference, but Metro is locked down.
That is a lie. There is NOTHING being done on the Desktop front to suggest this. Steam runs RIGHT NOW! So does Origin and any other software that ran on Windows 7. NOTHING has changed. There is only an addition of Metro being side-by-side the Desktop.

You won't be forced to sell your app on the Windows Store. Only if you want your game to run on Windows RT/Windows Phone 8/perhaps the next Xbox (as they share code) do you have to be on the Windows Store. If you just want to sell your game on Steam or on PC like you always could, then just forget the Windows Store and do what you want.
 

LukasTaves

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Dec 14, 2011
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Metro is an online store so of course its gonna be locked down. The problem is that it automatically becomes a huge competitor because its integrated into the OS. People don't have to go out and explore when they can easily fire up an app store the moment they start up their system.

Exactly, hence that's bad for competing stores, for developers themselves not so much, probably is even a good thing since it means that every single user is a potential buyer that can be reached by your app/game.
 

Einbroch

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Mar 24, 2009
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The default UI is Metro, similar to the Xbox dashboard and their UI on tablets and smartphones. There's still a desktop, but Metro also replaces the Start Menu and a few interface functions. Apps for Metro are a lot like smartphone apps, being limited to a particular API and only running in certain environments, which Microsoft can lock down to their own store. Desktop apps will still be available through any means, but Metro (and Microsoft's default app store) will be prevalent and locked down throughout the whole system.

And what is stopping Valve from making a Metro Steam app? I already have the Android one on my phone. Same with Blizzard.
 

ultim8p00

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Apr 26, 2008
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Their concern is if you want to sell a metro style app/game you have to use the windows 8 app store. I can see their point but like alot of people say, the iOS app store has been pretty good to indie developers...

Of course desktop apps/game will not have that restriction.

Seriously. These people need to relax on the negativity. If you don't want restrictions, just don't use the store and it will eventually fail due to low demand. Apple is doing the exact same shit with iOS and no one is bitching at them.

That is a lie. There is NOTHING being done on the Desktop front to suggest this. Steam runs RIGHT NOW! So does Origin and any other software that ran on Windows 7. NOTHING has changed. There is only an addition of Metro being side-by-side the Desktop.

You won't be forced to sell your app on the Windows Store. Only if you want your game to run on Windows RT/Windows Phone 8/perhaps the next Xbox (as they share code) do you have to be on the Windows Store. If you just want to sell your game on Steam or on PC like you always could, then just forget the Windows Store and do what you want.

THIS
 
Apr 19, 2012
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The Blue Marble
Kind of reminds me of that picture with the windows Operating Systems and how every other one was bad. Like XP was good, vista was bad, windows 7 was good, then it had windows 8 with a troll face.
 

Berordn

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Mar 18, 2010
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And what is stopping Valve from making a Metro Steam app? I already have the Android one on my phone. Same with Blizzard.

Having to distribute through Microsoft's app store, presumably. There may be restrictions on the approval process for anything that installs Metro or Desktop applications, or there may be fear of there not being enough ways to share your product, like in the old IE and Netscape wars.

We probably don't know enough at this point to understand why so many of these companies are up in arms about this, or it may be over nothing. I would understand their fears about a Microsoft controlled ecosystem though, since they're looking for a foothold in just about everything.
 

charsace

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Mar 23, 2007
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I think these devs really over estimate how many people are going to buy 8. Just because it's cheap doesn't mean people are going to buy it. People aren't stupid.

8 will be packed in with new computers. And its getting great reviews already.


Having to sell through Microsoft's app store, presumably.
They don't have to sell through metro. IMO the real problem is that MS is releasing an app store that is integrated into windows. These guys are floating the idea of MS locking things down to scare their customers into making noise.
 

aasoncott

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Aug 15, 2007
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There's... a lot of misinformation going around.

Windows 8 doesn't do anything specifically wrong. Windows RT, the tablet variation, does lock things down, though. It's not shocking, given that it's a different architecture, so apps programmed for the desktop wouldn't be able to run natively on it anyway.

Windows 8 doesn't lock you into using Metro programs. You can still run anything you want. You also don't have to buy apps through the app store. You can still install anything you want from any source. The problem with Windows 8 is that, inside of Metro, you are constrained by certain restrictions and app sources. And that's quite a change for Microsoft. Windows 8 won't stop you from doing what you want, it won't lock down or lock you out, but it's dipping its toes in that water. As is OSX. As is, really, every OS but Linux.

When all these developers say they think Windows 8 is a bad move, it's not because it's a bad OS. It's because it might mean the start of a shift towards a walled garden, which would be bad for pretty much everyone. It's the first step down the road of destruction. Possibly. Maybe. If we're not careful. The existence of Windows RT suggests we should proceed very, very cautiously.

This is, at least, what I understand the situation to be. If I'm wrong, someone please correct me.
 

Serialxp

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Jun 23, 2011
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I think these devs really over estimate how many people are going to buy 8. Just because it's cheap doesn't mean people are going to buy it. People aren't stupid.

I must be stupid because I really like Windows 8... I´m using it right now to tell the truth.