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Why aren't classic Microsoft games on GOG? What's Microsoft thinking?

Lime

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Apr 27, 2008
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Based on a previous thread I made, I learned that Microsoft-published titles and licenses aren't available on GOG. We have games like Freelancer, MS Flight Simulator, Mechwarrior + Mechcommander series (second-most requested games of all time on GOG), Monster Truck Madness, Starlancer, Tachyon: The Fringe, MS Combat Flight Simulator, and on and on, which simply aren't available on either GOG or Steam. Judging from the site as far as I've searched, there is not a single classic Microsoft game available on the service.

The only thing that Microsoft has done with their old games is put Rise of Nations and Age of Empires 1+2 HD on Steam, but otherwise they are completely absent from GOG. How can a company that has such a focus on video games not be in touch with the consumers and culture and not be available on a platform that is looking for all of these classics to re-distribute in an easily installable and modern-compatible manner? I could imagine GOG has approached Microsoft in the past, but have simply been denied or shunned.

They're sitting on so many classic games from when they wanted to gain ground for the PC gaming market, and it just doesn't make sense that they're doing absolutely nothing with them, despite a clear demand for the re-distribution of them.
 

18-Volt

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Jun 27, 2011
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Didn't Microsoft as a publisher show up on search once?

But seriously, Microsoft needs to be there, I think they are the only ones left along with Blizzard, to put up their games DRM free. I need to add Rise of Nations, Zoo Tycoon games and Midtown Madness to my collection.
 

messiaen

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May 10, 2015
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Age of Mythology too. But honestly, they've given those games a good treatment and AoE2 is getting yet another new expansion isn't it?

It's a shame they're not on there though.

Didn't Microsoft as a publisher show up on search once?

But seriously, Microsoft needs to be there, I think they are the only ones left along with Blizzard, to put up their games DRM free. I need to add Rise of Nations, Zoo Tycoon games and Midtown Madness to my collection.
I don't know if it's DRM-free, but if you put your old serial numbers into your Battle.net account, they'll be added to your library and you can download/install them without a client.
 

Nikodemos

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May 25, 2013
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Microsoft theoretically should have a much less adversarial relationship with GOG compared to Valve.

The absence of classic MS titles is indeed baffling.
 

Electret

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May 14, 2014
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In general Microsoft seems pretty disinterested in many of their classic IPs. DOS, Windows, OG Xbox, and Rare franchises in particular. Seems like there's a lot of untapped potential there, whether it takes the form of reissues, remakes, or new entries.
 

potatohead

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Aug 2, 2015
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In general Microsoft seems pretty disinterested in many of their classic IPs. DOS, Windows, OG Xbox, and Rare franchises in particular. Seems like there's a lot of untapped potential there, whether it takes the form of reissues, remakes, or new entries.
Yep it sucks.
 

ghostjoke

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Jun 21, 2014
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That would be a logical move by Microsoft in the pc gaming space, no chance of it happening.
 

Lime

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Apr 27, 2008
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In general Microsoft seems pretty disinterested in many of their classic IPs. DOS, Windows, OG Xbox, and Rare franchises in particular. Seems like there's a lot of untapped potential there, whether it takes the form of reissues, remakes, or new entries.
But why? GOG and several others have already approached Microsoft, yet they've actively denied any request to put the old games on the service. I just can't see the reasoning. Is it the DRM policies? Is it the disregard for old games? Is it incompetent management?
 

Nikodemos

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May 25, 2013
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Can't be DRM since MW4: Mercenaries was distributed for free by MekTek until 2 years ago, and MechCommander Gold and MC2 are/were freeware on some legit (albeit obscure) site.
 

Woorloog

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Apr 18, 2010
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What Microsoft is thinking?
They aren't.
Remember how they've been "supporting PC gaming" since, what, 2003? (UWP? LOL, it isn't really an improvement.)

Can't be DRM since MW4: Mercenaries was distributed for free by MekTek until 2 years ago, and MechCommander Gold and MC2 are/were freeware on some legit (albeit obscure) site.
MCG and MC2 were released as freeware as a part of... XML? Something like that. I think MS offers... well, more likely offered a download link for them.

As for MW4Mercs, pretty sure it has been longer than 2 years but i'm not sure.
 

potatohead

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But why? GOG and several others have already approached Microsoft, yet they've actively denied any request to put the old games on the service. I just can't see the reasoning. Is it the DRM policies? Is it the disregard for old games? Is it incompetent management?
Not necessarily incompetent but definitely a lack of motivation at the very least

Because it would take so much failure to sink the ship there is no impetus or urgency to anything Microsoft does it's classic for the company for last several decades except for early 1990 and 2000 pc games and og xbox and x360 first few years

Outside of these they just don't give a shit enough to do better
 

Lime

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Apr 27, 2008
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Not necessarily incompetent but definitely a lack of motivation at the very least

Because it would take so much failure to sink the ship there is no impetus or urgency to anything Microsoft does it's classic for the company for last several decades except for early 1990 and 2000 pc games and og xbox and x360 first few years

Outside of these they just don't give a shit enough to do better
I'm not following your explanation here. They've put up AoE on Steam along with Rise of Nations, so clearly they are doing something, but they are actively denying the old games to be put up on GOG, since it's clear that GOG have approached MS about the old portfolio.
 

eEK!

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May 31, 2015
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Not necessarily incompetent but definitely a lack of motivation at the very least

Because it would take so much failure to sink the ship there is no impetus or urgency to anything Microsoft does it's classic for the company for last several decades except for early 1990 and 2000 pc games and og xbox and x360 first few years

Outside of these they just don't give a shit enough to do better
Also it sounds like MS has a kinda toxic corporate corporate culture, where anyone that isn't chasing the latest buzzword is likely to be fired.
 

Tizoc

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Jun 23, 2010
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To me Microsoft nowadays area all about the XBox and pushing their Windows Store. That's a reason they prob. have little interest in their past projects.
 

Lime

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Apr 27, 2008
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Perhaps a general question: Whats the background story about AoE 2 HD and how did it get started and put up on Steam? How did Microsoft end up agreeing to it and much sales of the product have impacted any further considerations about their portfolio?
 

Glowsquid

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Jun 26, 2014
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Microsoft has nothing to do with Tachyon, that was Novalogic. Nordic recently bought Novalogic's entire portfolio so you can reasonably expect the game to show up on GOG in the future.
 

Lime

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Apr 27, 2008
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Microsoft has nothing to do with Tachyon, that was Novalogic. Nordic recently bought Novalogic's entire portfolio so you can reasonably expect the game to show up on GOG in the future.
Someone else in the previous thread wrote about it as if it was Microsoft's responsibility. My mistake.

I wish Microsoft followed in the footsteps as almost all other major game companies - EA, Activision, Ubisoft, Disney, etc. and got those classic games on GOG.
 

Timedog

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Oct 15, 2004
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Hey idiots. Let us give you lots of money for old as fuck games. Even put trash up there like nba inside drive. Also make windows 10 drivers for my sidewinder force feedback joystick, dummy. Thanks you idiot.


Edit: no one even knows that there existed an age of empires 1. No one played it or cared.
 

CecilRousso

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Jun 29, 2008
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This. Why would they publish them on a competing store?
Well, if they're open minded when it comes to the older games, they could look at Age of Empires 2 HD on Steam. A 17 year old game, today being played by 10-11k consecutive players, where there's actually a market for new expansions for that game. That's maybe on Steam, and not on GOG, but it shows that if they sell the old games where the players actually are, there migh be a suprisingly big market for them.

That would not happen on the Windows Store. There would be next to no revenue (based on how games seems to fare there today), no sudden rush of new players, no market for new DLC/Expansions, and they would not be building up attention for the franchise for possible new sequels.

Based on that example, there are reasons to sell the old games where the market is, and then maybe sell new entries in the franchise on their own store.

But of course they won't do that.
 

jelly

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Oct 14, 2013
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Perhaps a general question: Whats the background story about AoE 2 HD and how did it get started and put up on Steam? How did Microsoft end up agreeing to it and much sales of the product have impacted any further considerations about their portfolio?
Bill Gates likes it.

He does but I dunno how the HD version came about, fan mods kept interest high perhaps.
 

Khaz

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Ages of Empire II HD is a three years old game. It's a remake, not the original game tweaked to play on modern machines, made by an external studio. It's one big special case.

tbh I don't think they care selling the games where the market is. They're old games, fully amortised. They don't need to sell them. However, they can, if they want to, use them as a leverage to push their own store. Your opinion of how the Windows store is a failure or a barren wasteland doesn't really matter, it's how Microsoft sees it that does. And they certainly still see potential in it, else they wouldn't have kept it open.

Based on that example, there are reasons to sell the old games where the market is, and then maybe sell new entries in the franchise on their own store.
Giving away the old game on their store to promote the new entry would make much more sense than selling the old game on competing stores and having an unproven new game on sale exclusively on their store.
 

CecilRousso

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Jun 29, 2008
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Giving away the old game on their store to promote the new entry would make much more sense than selling the old game on competing stores and having an unproven new game on sale exclusively on their store.
I'm not convinced by that. I think that by selling them on an established market, they can at the very least gain some insight of which of the older games that have the biggest audience still, or has any audience at all.

I might be overestimating it, but I think that there are definitely reasons as to why they would sell them elsewhere.
 

Lagamorph

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Aug 6, 2013
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Oh man, Tachyon The Fringe....I remember that, good times.

I remember it being on a digital game on demand service years ago called Metaboli, but they removed it when they went 64-bit due to being unable to get it to work with their 64-bit client.
 
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Microsoft doesn't do anything on PC nowadays unless it promotes their current technology of the week (for the most part).

I'm not sure any store considers themselves in competition with the Windows 10 Universal Wasteland.
This is great. I am going to remember this for later.
 
May 27, 2013
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Ages of Empire II HD is a three years old game. It's a remake, not the original game tweaked to play on modern machines, made by an external studio. It's one big special case.
To be fair, they've also rereleased Age of Mythology and Rise of Nations since then.

But yeah, both of those were back in 2014.
 

Lime

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Apr 27, 2008
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Ages of Empire II HD is a three years old game. It's a remake, not the original game tweaked to play on modern machines, made by an external studio. It's one big special case.

tbh I don't think they care selling the games where the market is. They're old games, fully amortised. They don't need to sell them. However, they can, if they want to, use them as a leverage to push their own store. Your opinion of how the Windows store is a failure or a barren wasteland doesn't really matter, it's how Microsoft sees it that does. And they certainly still see potential in it, else they wouldn't have kept it open.
They don't need to sit on all the IPs they acquired in the late 90's when they tried to move in on the games market and then subsequently killed off because they realized they couldn't copy successful PC games onto a console design.

Microsoft could do what virtually all other sensible game publishers have done and are still doing, which is allow GOG's request to put up the old games on their store. Instead, they're basically on the level of Konami when it comes to their digital distribution practices and respect for the games they acquired in the 90s and 2000s.

For a company that is a major actor in the games industry, they surely aren't very supportive of the games themselves. It's frankly unbelievable that a company that makes a major console and has a host of games are so actively against requests to re-distribute their legacy games.