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Games For Windows Live Free, DX11 and Download Service Detailed
During the Gamefest 2008, Microsoft announced that Games for Windows Live becomes entirely free, even for cross-platform gameplay with X360 owners. The industry giant also announced that as of this fall it's going to launch a new Marketplace for Games for Windows Live, giving players an opportunity to download free and new content for games, in addition to trailers, demos and more.

Here's the official word:

Games for Windows ' LIVE:

Effective today, all Games for Windows ' LIVE multiplayer features are now completely free. Achievements, enhanced TruSkill matchmaking, cross-platform play with XBOX 360 (in games that support it), voice and text chat, a friends list that is consistent across both Windows and XBOX 360 ' everything ' is now free to Windows gamers.

  • This change immediately affects all currently available Games for Windows ' LIVE titles and all future titles.
  • Microsoft will also announce plans to deliver a Games for Windows ' LIVE marketplace this fall, which will offer downloadable game content (free and paid, determined by the publisher), demos, trailers and more.
  • Microsoft is also making the Games for Windows ' LIVE in-game interface much more PC friendly, and reducing the technical requirements for developers.

    DirectX 11:

    Microsoft will disclose plans for DirectX 11 to game developers. DirectX 11 is a big step forward for gaming, adding features onto existing DirectX 10 (and 10.1) hardware. Direct3D 11, a key component of DirectX 11, will include:

  • Full support (including all DX11 hardware features) on Windows Vista as well as future versions of Windows
  • Compatibility with DirectX 10 and 10.1 hardware, as well as support for new DirectX 11 hardware
  • New compute shader technology that lays the groundwork for the GPU to be used for more than just 3D graphics, so that developers can take advantage of the graphics card as a parallel processor
  • Multi-threaded resource handling that will allow games to better take advantage of multi-core machines
  • Support for tessellation, which blurs the line between super high quality pre-rendered scenes and scenes rendered in real-time, allowing game developers to refine models to be smoother and more attractive when seen up close


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18 post(s)
Reader Comments
artofwot Jul 22 2008, 05:09 am EDT
About fucking time.
Supcic Jul 22 2008, 05:24 am EDT
360 owners continue to fall for their scam. Multiplayer should be fucking free regardless the platform. DirectX 11? You gotta be fucking kidding me.
  Juxtapose: I'm an Xbox 360 owner who has never once paid for an …
Paul Jul 22 2008, 06:16 am EDT
I love the fact that there is about 4 games that use dx10, and that "use" results in worse framerate with the same visual quality.
psamathos Jul 22 2008, 07:27 am EDT
That's nice. Still not installing Vista.
igal_alkon Jul 22 2008, 07:35 am EDT
"Marketplace for Games for Windows Live" can't they think of something shorter? oh well, that's microsoft, a bunch of shit build up one on another.
Tin_man Jul 22 2008, 07:43 am EDT
This is such a load of crap. How many games with DX 10 camed on pc? and how many were good enough to actually buy a DX 10 videocard? And even so, the difference between DX 9c and DX 10 on some pc games out there is outstandingly inexistent. And now they are gonna shove another DX down our throat just so that we are able to play Far Crap 15
  Terminator: This is why I'm a console gamer, screw DX 10 AND DX 11!
Tin_man: Never was a fan of the gamepad :)
NiteX Jul 22 2008, 08:05 am EDT
Yep, I agree with most of the crap you guys are saying. DX10 is currently a joke, so they decide to throw out an 11? Maybe devs will start using 10 once 11 comes out? ha!
  Foo: I sure hope OpenGL get popular again!
Foo Jul 22 2008, 08:48 am EDT
I sure hope OpenGL get popular again!
thestewieman Jul 22 2008, 09:19 am EDT
all consoles games not on the xbox360, are OpenGL...
  Cheddar: Wrong.
thestewieman: nope, PS3/Wii it's all OpenGL... also check the box …
thestewieman: the xbox/360 are the only consoles using DirectX, nob…
Juxtapose: The Xbox and Xbox 360 were built to show off what Dir…
Cheddar: The PS3's Nvidia GPU supports both the DirectX 9 and …
Cheddar: And btw, Juxtapose, the 360 doesn't even support Dire…
Juxtapose: Hello Cheddar, Yup, you are absolutely correct tha…
thestewieman: no no and no.
thestewieman: the PS3 always uses OpenGL and Nvidia CG for shading …
thestewieman Jul 22 2008, 09:24 am EDT
and i doubt live would be free for a very long time, once all developer switched they will just start charging for it again (as it's the Microsoft's way...)

  Juxtapose: Doubtful. It'll either remain free, or be phased out.
Terminator Jul 22 2008, 09:41 am EDT
I can't belive this, DX 10 just got going and they are looking at DX 11. Screw this crap, get a console for your gaming needs. This makes me glad I spent my computer money on a new slim desktop, which is not designed for gaming. The cost of PC gaming is only going up.
Cheddar Jul 22 2008, 11:58 am EDT
Well, it says right there in the press release that existing DX10 supporting hardware will support DX11, so you all can calm down.

Sounds like this will be an upgrade to the API similar to when DX8.1 upgraded to DX9. This won't be like when DX9 upgraded to DX10, people.
Cheddar Jul 22 2008, 12:03 pm EDT
# Compatibility with DirectX 10 and 10.1 hardware, as well as support for new DirectX 11 hardware

# New compute shader technology that lays the groundwork for the GPU to be used for more than just 3D graphics, so that developers can take advantage of the graphics card as a parallel processor

# Multi-threaded resource handling that will allow games to better take advantage of multi-core machines


Those are all great things, people. DX11 sounds like a step forward to me, and might actually be an API that makes Vista something other than absolute shit for gaming. Some of you are far too knee-jerk with your reactions.
  QuickBrownFox: Be honest, most of these replies were written by post…
Cheddar: Yep. Hence the term "knee-jerk."
DarkKnight: Use the graphics card as a parallel processor? My gra…
Templ Jul 22 2008, 12:07 pm EDT
The amount of whining that comes out of people's mouths these days is astonishing. I'm not sure what to make of it to tell you the truth.
Fedorro Jul 22 2008, 02:52 am EDT
Well. I truly think these are good news.
Someone finally understand that charging for a games on PC that are very weak at this moment (considering gaming) is simply retarded.

Looking forward for more improvements:)
DarkKnight Jul 23 2008, 07:11 am EDT
Whoever thought that charging for multiplayer on the PC was looking too hard at WoW.

No fucking sane person will pay to do what most PC games bring to us for free. Especially with the whiney fucking kids that play it. *Shudders*
TERATOGEN Jul 23 2008, 11:29 am EDT
What about XP and DX11 or it's Windows 7 only kind of thing?
  Juxtapose: Looks like DirectX 11 will be Windows Vista and up on…
thestewieman Jul 23 2008, 07:31 am EDT
cheddar:
only OpenGL plus Nvidia's CG and other non-Microsoft Api's are available on the PS3.
http://www.opengl.org/news/permalink/nvidia​_showcases_rsx_opengl_es_20_accelerated_graph​ics_processor_for_playst/

actually u can even ask my friend John Carmack over at slashdot.
http://slashdot.org/~John%20Carmack
he can tell u the exact same thing, that there are zero Microsoft API's on the PS3 ;)

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