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id Software: PC isn't the market leader anymore

8:00 AM on 10.08.2011 // Jim Sterling

id Software's history with PC gaming led gamers to believe that RAGE's computer-based version would be a worthy product. Unfortunately, it released to the tune of angry customers thanks to it looking like garbage and running like sh*t for a lot of people. id's Jon Carmack isn't thrilled about it, but he isn't too heartbroken -- PC just isn't that important anymore. 

"We knew that all older AMD drivers, and some Nvidia drivers would have problems with the game, but we were running well in-house on all of our test systems," he said. "When launch day came around and the wrong driver got released, half of our PC customers got a product that basically didn't work ... Issues with older / lower end /exotic setups are to be expected on a PC release, but we were not happy with the experience on what should be prime platforms."

However, Carmack is unrepetent about disappointing PC gamers who expected a quality product, stating that you can design a game to work properly on consoles or high-end PCs, but you can't do both. Since id no longer considers the PC important, it chose the former: "You can choose to design a game around the specs of a high-end PC and make console versions that fail to hit the design point, or design around the specs of the consoles and have a high-end PC provide incremental quality improvements. We chose the latter."

"We do not see the PC as the leading platform for games. That statement will enrage some people, but it is hard to characterize it otherwise; both console versions will have larger audiences than the PC version.

"A high end PC is nearly ten times as powerful as a console, and we could unquestionably provide a better experience if we chose that as our design point and we were able to expend the same amount of resources on it. Nowadays most of the quality of a game comes from the development effort put into it, not the technology it runs on. A game built with a tenth the resources on a platform ten times as powerful would be an inferior product in almost all cases."

Maybe the PC would get more market share if developers stopped releasing shitty, poorly optimized ports on it. Just a thought. 

Why Was The PC Launch of Rage Such A "Cluster!@#$"? [Kotaku]


Jim Sterling, Former Reviews Editor
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