Why Apple should cater to 'serious' gamers - and why it probably won't

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  • Reply 41 of 62
    Apple could and should support serious gamers. Gamers demand the same high performance graphics chips, CPUs and screens that are needed by the professional design community and also demand an affordable price. Take a look at the gamer PC and laptop markets where you can get a much more powerful computer than any Mac for far less money. They are ugly yes but at this point it feels like bucking the minimalist trend. Apple could support gamers by making a couple of internal changes and working with GPU vendors. First they would need a VM that had full access to the GPU. Building a VM into the operating system makes a lot of sense. You could use it for safe web browsing, backwards compatibility, and, in this case, to run Steam. Building a computer capable of running both Mac OS and all the latest games would be a fantastic challenge for Apple's management. If they could do that, they could break themselves out of their current mental restraints. It is something Steve Jobs would do.
    xzu
  • Reply 42 of 62
    I have used Macs since my Mac Plus in the 80's, have owned most models in the last 30 years including iMacs, powerbooks, mac pro's  and continue to live off my PB Pro 2013 (waiting for the next rev of that machine).  I also have one air-cooled and one water-cooled PC for gaming since  warcraft runs fine on my PB but driving a 34" monitor is not great and playing Skyrim or Witcher or Mass Effect requires Windows and a real graphics gpu.  I might be unusual in that I can sink 5 figures into PC stuff just to play games requiring windows, but I know a lot of PC gamers that have spent a small fortune on high end PC's just for gaming. I have upgraded my PCs for gaming annually but have seen little reason to upgrade my 3 year old MBpro or my 4 year old iMac.   Straddling both worlds, I would even propose that a lot of sales on the PC side are driven by gaming needs and not corporate or personal use.  Most personal domestic PC users probably prefer a Mac if they are not gamers.

    Until Apple addresses the gaming issue, then major PC/console games like Mass Effect and Witcher, etc. will not be ported over and they will miss out on the market.  I think the high end gaming market is under-estimated and given the sales of LOL, DOTA, and all the other stuff that currently will not run on a mac, it is something that Apple should seriously consider.  Even baked in system/hardware level support for external GPU configurations would go a long ways.
    xzuargonaut
  • Reply 43 of 62
    tallest skiltallest skil Posts: 43,399member
    Imagine a world in which Bungie isn’t purchased by Microsoft. Sure, the open world concept for the first Halo doesn’t happen, but at least Apple gets a native FPS that people would have… well, they’d still love it, but it wouldn’t have been as much a phenomenon. I don’t know much about the franchise otherwise, but I really like the idea of a game based on open world exploration of the concept itself. Anyway, maybe Apple cares more about graphics performance in that world.
    xzu
  • Reply 44 of 62
    macplusplusmacplusplus Posts: 1,652member
    MacPro said:

    The comparison Macs vs. consoles + PCs in the article does not make sense. Since the mature and established gaming solution is the console, then you should compare consoles to PCs + Macs.

    Console in desktop gaming, iOS in mobile gaming. These are two established and mature solutions shaping the gaming market. Apple already addresses hardcore gamers with its dominant mobile gaming solution. The rest is the stupidity and laziness of the studios who missed the paradigm shifting towards mobile.
    You might be a tad early with that thought.  I agree with everything you say or did until I read about LiquidSky.  There is possible a parallel market here.
    Same problem as VR: games must be re-written from scratch for cloud GPU emulation. Games playable on the web are not new: you can play sprite based games (as once happened with Flash) but playing a true first person shooter with 60 fps in 1080p resolution while watching ads will suck...
    xzuargonaut
  • Reply 45 of 62
    nhtnht Posts: 4,436member
    sog35 said:
    Timmy Cookie needs to support gaming on AppleTv

    absolute failure on his part. 

    First off the original restrictions on the ATV was beyond dumb:

    1. All games need work on the siri remote
    2. microscopic file size
    3. No 1st party controller

    horrible.

    If I was Timid Tim I would buy a game company and make games exclusively for Apple
    Lol...another 180...
  • Reply 46 of 62
    Simplistic games are okay on a smartphone due to limited controllers on a touchscreen phone model.  But serious games require serious hardware and much of the innovation in GPU and CPU tech is driven by gaming requirements.  You can use a 10 year old system to watch most media aside from cutting edge 4K HDR but even a 2 year old gaming PC is starting to chug on ultra quality settings with 2016 or 17 gaming releases.  Gaming developers have pushed the realism and physics/environmental rendering of the experience without pause and Apple simply is not even close as a player in that space.

    The odd thing is that Apple has pushed the boundaries for our collective good in so many ways over the last 30 years.  I mean they have done some amazing shit.  But there problem with the company is not engineering know how but rather a mindset that music, video and photo archiving is important but gaming is not "something we do".  In my opinion this is unfortunate because I would much rather have a 5K iMac with a 1080 GPU that I can swap out when I want to upgrade that portion than having a MBPro and a Win10 gaming PC sharing the real estate on my desk so I can do all the things I like to do with a computer.

    In the same way that Apple hired successful members of the music industry to senior positions to help with that space, or the fashion/marketing industry for that matter, I think they could consider hiring some hardcore gaming expertise.  It will be an uphill battle only because the game developers would also have to come on board and port current and future content over to Mac OS.  But Apple could help with that as well if they are serious.

    I am beyond the culture wars of Mac vs PC or iOS versus Android. I started out on a PDP 11/40 so all this seems like magic in a way. I simply buy the tool that does the job the best.  For me this has been 10K dollars to PC's for cutting edge gaming/better financial software/better dragon voice dictation and 0K to Apple in the last 2 years.


    xzuargonaut
  • Reply 47 of 62
    macplusplusmacplusplus Posts: 1,652member
    Epymian said:
    Simplistic games are okay on a smartphone due to limited controllers on a touchscreen phone model.  But serious games require serious hardware and much of the innovation in GPU and CPU tech is driven by gaming requirements.  You can use a 10 year old system to watch most media aside from cutting edge 4K HDR but even a 2 year old gaming PC is starting to chug on ultra quality settings with 2016 or 17 gaming releases.  Gaming developers have pushed the realism and physics/environmental rendering of the experience without pause and Apple simply is not even close as a player in that space.
    You're utterly wrong on that. Just go to an Apple Store and play some iOS games on the AppleTV with the attached controller. Those are not expo demos, those are real products. Thanks to Metal, iOS has "pushed the realism and physics/environmental rendering of the experience without pause" to unprecedented levels. Apple is the leader in mobile gaming, period.
    edited April 2017 StrangeDays
  • Reply 48 of 62
    Epymian said:
    Simplistic games are okay on a smartphone due to limited controllers on a touchscreen phone model.  But serious games require serious hardware and much of the innovation in GPU and CPU tech is driven by gaming requirements.  You can use a 10 year old system to watch most media aside from cutting edge 4K HDR but even a 2 year old gaming PC is starting to chug on ultra quality settings with 2016 or 17 gaming releases.  Gaming developers have pushed the realism and physics/environmental rendering of the experience without pause and Apple simply is not even close as a player in that space.
    You're utterly wrong on that. Just go to an Apple Store and play some iOS games on the AppleTV with the attached controller. Those are not expo demos, those are real products. Thanks to Metal, iOS has "pushed the realism and physics/environmental rendering of the experience without pause" to unprecedented levels. Apple is the leader in mobile gaming, period.
    Not arguing with that at all and some of those games are fairly compelling.  And not saying that a more complex game graphically is more entertaining or enjoyable than a very simple game.  But I think there is a big market demonstrable on the PC side for games that need serious GPU power and IMO a lot of the persistence of PC's and windows on the home consumer front is due to gaming.  Now you could have a PS4 alongside your Mac and be just fine but most consoles do not match PC's in terms of upgradeability of the GPU and many of us prefer keyboard and mouse to a controller.  

    I also agree that Metal is exciting and I hear Apple is continuing to push it forward, particularly in mobile.  What ever direction they take, I hope they consider the gamer market that needs cutting edge GPU power and develop hardware that allows you to upgrade the graphics card or that seamlessly supports external GPU power over thunderbolt 3 without hacks and patches.  Even improved intrinsic support for the latter would be huge and likely require little work on their part.  Imagine if you could attach a 1080 GPU to your Apple TV even.  Or your iPhone.  Crazy - sure but maybe there is a niche for that.  It would also get major game studios to turn more resources to the Mac ecosystem.

  • Reply 49 of 62
    nhtnht Posts: 4,436member
    sockrolid said:
    Why?
    Because high-end gaming rigs generate high-margin sales.

    Why not?
    Because the high-end gamer market is a tiny niche.
    The high end gaming market is not a tiny niche. PC gamers generated almost $32 billion in revenue in 2016. The mobile gaming market generated $36.9 billion. For comparison, the console game market generated $30 billion in revenue in 2016.  

    PC gaming isn't all that big.

    Since a 2008 peak in physical retail sales of interactive games, which brought approximately 11.7 billion dollars to the U.S. economy, the dollar sales figures have been declining and the latest 2014 results report sales of computer and video games at a level of 5.47 billion U.S. dollars.  Category breakdown shows that computer games accounted for nearly 3.11 percent of the entire figure, while the rest was attributed to video games.

    https://www.statista.com/statistics/189592/breakdown-of-us-video-game-sales-2009-by-genre/

    Link says 2009 but the data says 2015.

    Even using the reported $32 billion number hard core gaming is a tiny fraction:

    The worldwide gaming market was worth a whopping $91 billion this year, according to a new Superdata Research report. Mobile gaming, powered by huge hits like Pokemon Go and Clash Royale, led the way with a total estimated market value of $41 billion, but the PC acquitted itself very well, pulling in just shy of $36 billion over the year, "driven largely by free-to-play online titles and downloadable games.

    Premium game revenues on the PC hit $5.4 billion for the year, not too far off of the $6.6 billion earned across consoles. Overwatch led the way, earning $586 million, followed by CS:GO, Guild Wars 2, Minecraft, and Fallout 4. But the real money remains with free-to-play games: League of Legends once again tops that chart at $1.7 billion, followed by Dungeon Fighter Challenge, Crossfire, World of Tanks, and Dota 2, which brought in a relatively paltry $260 million. 

    http://www.pcgamer.com/pc-gaming-market-worth-36-billion-in-2016/

    WoT has a mac wrapper, LoL, DOTA 2 is on the Mac. DFO and Crossfire you need to bootcamp but the system requirements are modest.


  • Reply 50 of 62
    StrangeDaysStrangeDays Posts: 7,557member
    jdw said:
    In other words, even with a modular Mac Pro coming in 2018, don't expect Apple to sell you a true expandable Mac unless it adopts a radically different corporate philosophy -- like Apple did after Steve Jobs left in the 1980's and Apple subsequently released products like the Macintosh SE/30 with extreme expandability that never would have happened under Jobs.

    Jobs is gone, but Tim Cook & Co. are still holding on to what they think is the ideal strategy because in large part Jobs defined that minimalistic strategy.  And so long as their stock is rising and they rack in profits, nothing will shake them from their current state of complacency toward the Mac.  I'm all for iOS devices, but like Steve Jobs once said, WE WILL ALWAYS NEEDS TRUCKS (expandable, work-horse desktop computers).

    We haven't even seen the 2018 Mac Pro yet and already its a LET DOWN.

    Sad.  Very sad.
    Er, it's not a 2018 MP. They said not-2017, which does not mean 2018. They even corrected Gruber on this.

    Also, since Apple still sells Macs, they still sell trucks. At no point did Jobs say in his analogy that the "trucks" (regular personal computers) has to be expandable work stations. You're projecting your desires.
    edited April 2017
  • Reply 51 of 62
    StrangeDaysStrangeDays Posts: 7,557member
    A week or so ago there were posts here about Apple now doing their own GPU development.

    Well, if they are wanting to cater for "serious" gamers then their GPU will need to be DirectX or OpenGL compliant. Development houses aren't going to be making a Metal implementation for a platform that only has 4% of the market.
    What do they do for iOS? It ain't DirectX, that's for sure. 
  • Reply 52 of 62
    StrangeDaysStrangeDays Posts: 7,557member
    grangerfx said:
    Apple could and should support serious gamers. Gamers demand the same high performance graphics chips, CPUs and screens that are needed by the professional design community and also demand an affordable price. Take a look at the gamer PC and laptop markets where you can get a much more powerful computer than any Mac for far less money. They are ugly yes but at this point it feels like bucking the minimalist trend. Apple could support gamers by making a couple of internal changes and working with GPU vendors. First they would need a VM that had full access to the GPU. Building a VM into the operating system makes a lot of sense. You could use it for safe web browsing, backwards compatibility, and, in this case, to run Steam. Building a computer capable of running both Mac OS and all the latest games would be a fantastic challenge for Apple's management. If they could do that, they could break themselves out of their current mental restraints. It is something Steve Jobs would do.
    Yeah except Jobs is on the record as not liking gaming, so...not so sure about that. How well did you know him? You knew him personally, right?
  • Reply 53 of 62
    StrangeDaysStrangeDays Posts: 7,557member

    sog35 said:
    Timmy Cookie needs to support gaming on AppleTv

    absolute failure on his part. 

    First off the original restrictions on the ATV was beyond dumb:

    1. All games need work on the siri remote
    2. microscopic file size
    3. No 1st party controller

    horrible.

    If I was Timid Tim I would buy a game company and make games exclusively for Apple
    Wait -- so now you're bagging on Cook again? Did your mess wear off, or are you trying to manipulate stock, or is your account some sort of sock puppet?
  • Reply 54 of 62
    MacProMacPro Posts: 18,215member
    nht said:
    MacPro said:
    I'd rather Apple NOT focus on games. Someone in this world has to get some work done.
    Some of us are retired :)
    Start working out and hit the runway

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/80-year-old-model_us_581b77fee4b0ba0d98fdea73

    The assumption that enjoying playing a game or two when retired equates to not working out and / or not being in good shape is kind of stereotyping me thinks.  I'm in excellent shape (as in perfect BMI and zero belly fat)  so I could 'hit the runway' I'm sure ...  lol  but I'll decline thanks.  Maybe because I live on the gulf coast of Florida and can kayak, go to our private gym, bike ride, walk the beaches at sunset and swim  year round helps.  :)
    edited April 2017
  • Reply 55 of 62
    MacProMacPro Posts: 18,215member
    MacPro said:

    The comparison Macs vs. consoles + PCs in the article does not make sense. Since the mature and established gaming solution is the console, then you should compare consoles to PCs + Macs.

    Console in desktop gaming, iOS in mobile gaming. These are two established and mature solutions shaping the gaming market. Apple already addresses hardcore gamers with its dominant mobile gaming solution. The rest is the stupidity and laziness of the studios who missed the paradigm shifting towards mobile.
    You might be a tad early with that thought.  I agree with everything you say or did until I read about LiquidSky.  There is possible a parallel market here.
    Same problem as VR: games must be re-written from scratch for cloud GPU emulation. Games playable on the web are not new: you can play sprite based games (as once happened with Flash) but playing a true first person shooter with 60 fps in 1080p resolution while watching ads will suck...
    So LiquidSky is a con job eh?  Didn't realize that, thanks for telling me.  I was thinking of booting into Windows 10 from my 6 core 2013 Mac Pro and downloading the beta to see how it ran (only Windows version available as of yet)  but maybe I won't bother now I've been enlightened.  That said I can run GTA V at 60+ fps at 2560 x 1440 using both GPUs so  don't need LiquidSky but it seemed like a good thing for folks with lesser Macs.  Shame it's a fake technology.  How the heck to they get investors?

    BTW I'd pay the modest fee, not watch ads, had it worked and I needed it.  Those that don't want to pay could walk away from their Macs while the ads were on to earn points I'd have thought, I doubt they'd appear in the middle of driving through Los Santos   ;)
    edited April 2017
  • Reply 56 of 62
    MacProMacPro Posts: 18,215member

    Epymian said:
    Simplistic games are okay on a smartphone due to limited controllers on a touchscreen phone model.  But serious games require serious hardware and much of the innovation in GPU and CPU tech is driven by gaming requirements.  You can use a 10 year old system to watch most media aside from cutting edge 4K HDR but even a 2 year old gaming PC is starting to chug on ultra quality settings with 2016 or 17 gaming releases.  Gaming developers have pushed the realism and physics/environmental rendering of the experience without pause and Apple simply is not even close as a player in that space.
    You're utterly wrong on that. Just go to an Apple Store and play some iOS games on the AppleTV with the attached controller. Those are not expo demos, those are real products. Thanks to Metal, iOS has "pushed the realism and physics/environmental rendering of the experience without pause" to unprecedented levels. Apple is the leader in mobile gaming, period.
    Mobile gaming is great for my AAPL shares for sure.  Just curious, have you ever run X-Plane 11 across three large screens?  Ever played GTA V open world in free form mode?  Have you ever had the fun of loading mods to the likes of X-Plane or GTA V? 
  • Reply 57 of 62
    dasanman69dasanman69 Posts: 12,980member
    brucemc said:
    …opinions of the “never satisfied" have already declared it a failure.  These are the same "hard core" types that buy the gaming machines - they will never be happy with wuhat Apple produces and unlikely to buy the products.
    Games aren’t optimized for PC anymore. The best platform gets the short end of the stick every time. If software frameworks could be made that make PC development easier–more accessible, with easier means of implementing high-quality graphics (and certainly access to better animation tools because, for fuck’s sake, the AAA studios don’t care about that)–maybe there’d be a chance for a resurgence. I don’t get consoles–particularly non-Nintendo ones. Nintendo has the franchises, but they’ve sort of lost their way in making hardware to put them on. Why are consoles so popular when they’re worse in every way than PCs?
    Consoles have the best games 
  • Reply 58 of 62
    dasanman69dasanman69 Posts: 12,980member
    Imagine a world in which Bungie isn’t purchased by Microsoft. Sure, the open world concept for the first Halo doesn’t happen, but at least Apple gets a native FPS that people would have… well, they’d still love it, but it wouldn’t have been as much a phenomenon. I don’t know much about the franchise otherwise, but I really like the idea of a game based on open world exploration of the concept itself. Anyway, maybe Apple cares more about graphics performance in that world.
    I have no problem finding an online game for Halo 4. It came out in 2012, and it's the sixth best selling game in the history of the Xbox 360.
  • Reply 59 of 62
    tallest skiltallest skil Posts: 43,399member
    Consoles have the most games 
    Fixed that for you.

    dasanman69 said:
    I have no problem finding an online game for Halo 4.
    And many don’t have problems finding an online game for late ‘90s PC games. Can’t do that with a console.
    …in the history of the Xbox 360.
    To be fair, that’s not saying much.  :p

  • Reply 60 of 62
    argonautargonaut Posts: 124member
    LOL - I still play ID's Quake 3 Arena (OpenGL game from '99 ) on a 2012 Mac Mini running the latest Sierra update ( which screwed with the games gamma settings due to some under the hood changes introduced I think by the "night shift" feature - but luckily I found a work around in Q3A ) 

    The last time Steve Jobs or Apple showed any interest in Mac gaming was when they had John Carmack from ID Software on stage demoing the Q3test on a PowerPC ( G3 I think? )  with the newly announced OpenGL support in MacOS.... but that was to show off speed/performance of the new hardware and OpenGL.
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