Windows Live will be required to play Gears of War online

Thursday 19th July 2007, 07:07:00 AM, written by Farid

The multi million seller Xbox 360 shooter from Epic games, Gears of War, was announced at E3 to be on its way to the PC. This title published by Microsoft Games Studio, unlike Shadowrun and Halo 2, will be Windows Vista and XP compatible right out of the box. What the game has in common with the two other first Games for Window titles from Microsoft is the integration of the Windows Live platform for all the online related components of Gears of War.

Indeed, Microsoft did confirm to CVG that online play in Gears of War would be available via its Windows Live platform only. A Vista-only platform, so far, which will also be made available to Windows XP. Windows Live is the PC equivalent of Microsoft’s Xbox Live platform, with the same two types of accounts available: Silver, a free account and Gold a premium one.

So far, online gaming was available to Windows Live silver accounts, whereas it is a Gold-only feature on Xbox Live. Only the Cross-platform play (PC to Xbox 360) in Shadowrun required a Windows Live Gold account. Nevertheless, this news will probably irritate some of the PC gamers who are worried that this Windows Live experience could turn in the foreseeable future into an exclusively pay-to-play platform, akin what Xbox Live is.

Online multiplayer on the Xbox Live version of Gears of war was a peer-to-peer experience; it is unclear whether a dedicated server will be available, right out of the box or not, for the PC version. Compared to the Xbox 360 version, the PC version of Gears of War will feature DirectX 10 support, obviously a Vista-only feature, five new campaign chapters, a new multiplayer mode, three more multiplayer maps and more importantly, a game editor. Like every other Unreal Engine game from Epic, the game editor will allow for user created contents to be developed for the game.

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windows ± windows, live


Latest Thread Comments (15 total)
Posted by Bouncing Zabaglione Bros. on Thursday, 19-Jul-07 14:24:34 UTC
The PC FPS crowd has traditionally been vehemently against paying a monthly fee to play online games. There are a lot more casual players, and it's not as if there's anything like levelling or items that you work hard for and keep between sessions (as with the likes of WOW or EVE).It will be interesting to see how Epic handle the same thing for UT3. I suspect that title will not be Windows Live, and will be seen as far more hardcore than GoW.

Posted by AlNets on Thursday, 19-Jul-07 16:35:59 UTC
Quoting pjbliverpool
EDIT: I forgot the $40 for Live aswell.
You don't have to pay for Live on PC to play MP...
Quoting Bouncing Zabaglione Bros.
It will be interesting to see how Epic handle the same thing for UT3. I suspect that title will not be Windows Live, and will be seen as far more hardcore than GoW.
Mark Rein mentioned on their forums that UT3 will not use Windows Live.http://forums.epicgames.com/showpost.php?p=24945415&postcount=14
Quoting Mark Rein
UT3 does not use Games for Windows LIVE.

Posted by Scott_Arm on Thursday, 19-Jul-07 17:00:24 UTC
Quoting pjbliverpool
It says above this is available on XP aswell.

Besides, im not sure of the pricing logic of going for a 360+Gears over Vista+Gears. Clearly the second option is much cheaper and your getting more content with the PC version aswell.

EDIT: I forgot the $40 for Live aswell.
Well, it says live will be made available on XP, but it doesn't say when. It could be a year from now, for all we know.

If you're looking strictly at GoW, maybe Vista is a better way to go. Overall, I'd rather pay the extra money and get a 360, which has far more games available then what gets released on the PC. Unless there are OEM versions of Vista available now?

Posted by pjbliverpool on Thursday, 19-Jul-07 17:01:42 UTC
Quoting AlStrong
You don't have to pay for Live on PC to play MP...
I should have been more clear, that was in reference to having to pay it if you went for a 360+Gears rather than Vista+Gears (if Gears was Vista exclusive, which it isn't).

Posted by kyleb on Thursday, 19-Jul-07 17:26:15 UTC
Quoting Scott_Arm
Well, it says live will be made available on XP, but it doesn't say when. It could be a year from now, for all we know.

If you're looking strictly at GoW, maybe Vista is a better way to go. Overall, I'd rather pay the extra money and get a 360, which has far more games available then what gets released on the PC. Unless there are OEM versions of Vista available now?
Huh, the article clearly states that the game will ship with support for both Vista and XP, it is even harder to miss than all OEM versions of Vista being sold.

Posted by Scott_Arm on Thursday, 19-Jul-07 17:35:27 UTC
Quoting kyleb
Huh, the article clearly states that the game will ship with support for both Vista and XP, it is even harder to miss than all OEM versions of Vista being sold.
Yeah, the game will run on Vista and on XP, but it doesn't say Live multiplayer will be available right away on XP. I guess it's a good assumption, but it didn't read that way to me.

The post was written quickly and I didn't write what I meant to. I know there are OEM versions of Vista available, but my understanding is you're tied to the motherboard you first install on, which is something I don't want.

Posted by Malo on Thursday, 19-Jul-07 18:31:58 UTC
Quoting Scott_Arm
The post was written quickly and I didn't write what I meant to. I know there are OEM versions of Vista available, but my understanding is you're tied to the motherboard you first install on, which is something I don't want.
Full retail and OEM versions are linked to your motherboard. The retail just allows you to reinstall on a new computer, whereas an OEM is locked to that original computer. Thats why I bought retail.

Posted by pjbliverpool on Thursday, 19-Jul-07 21:46:26 UTC
Quoting Scott_Arm
Well, it says live will be made available on XP, but it doesn't say when. It could be a year from now, for all we know. If you're looking strictly at GoW, maybe Vista is a better way to go. Overall, I'd rather pay the extra money and get a 360, which has far more games available then what gets released on the PC. Unless there are OEM versions of Vista available now?
Since when does the 360 have more games than the PC? Either pre-existing or new releases? Regarding OEM Vista, you are theoretically tied to a motherboard but all you have to do is tell MS your existing one broke and I havn't heard of a case yet were they won't let you change it. But even retail is way cheaper than a 360. In fact retail Vista plus Gears PC would be cheaper than just the 360 alone. If you want a 360 anyway thats fine but there certainly isn't a financial advantage to getting one over getting Vista. And if you have a Vista powered PC thats capable of playing Gears as well or better than a 360 then much of the advantage of owning one at all evaporates. (although to be fair, I also have both).

Posted by Dresden on Thursday, 19-Jul-07 22:01:15 UTC
The latest issue of Games for Windows featured GoW on the cover and had a nice spread inside. This is definitely how GoW was intended to be enjoyed. Hopefully now I can play it without the dropped frames, and with full AA!

Posted by Farid For clarification sake on Friday, 20-Jul-07 03:56:09 UTC
Just an update based on an email I've just got from Epic:
Quoting News
it is unclear whether a dedicated server will be available, right out of the box or not, for the PC version
According to Epic, the answer to that game server question is still uncertain at this point.


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