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Xbox team ruining GfW Live - Stardock

"My friends, you can't do that on the PC."

Digital publisher Stardock believes Games for Windows - Live will collapse if Microsoft continues to let the Xbox team hack away at it.

"I started out as a big Games for Windows - Live advocate. I intended for [Elemental: War of Magic] to be on Games for Windows - Live, but then as we got closer, the Xbox group took it over more and more. And they have things where, oh, if you want to use Games for Windows - Live to update your game, you have to go through [their] certification. And if you do it more than X number of times, you have to pay money," Wardell told ShackNews. "It's like, 'My friends, you can't do that on the PC.'

"On the console, I don't have to update my game because an anti-virus program got an update and is now identifying my VB scripts as viruses and I have to apply an emergency patch. That would just add insult to injury. We've had to upgrade our games plenty of times over the years, not because we found some bug, but because some third-party program, or driver, or whatever screwed it up.

"If Games for Windows Live maintains that strategy and they take over," he added, "I'm done. I'm not making PC games. I would be done."

Wardell rued how his team had to become IT experts overnight to tackle NAT port connection issues with Demigod - something he'd "get for free" if making a game for Xbox 360. He wants access to the Microsoft game servers "without all these strings attached".

Wardell isn't the first to shun Games for Windows - Live: Microsoft-favourite Epic Games ditched the service for Unreal Tournament 3.

Games for Windows - Live was once a paid-for service like Xbox Live, which it sought to emulate. But forcing PC owners, who had choice, to part from their cash proved difficult. That's why GfW turned into a free service last summer.

Elemental: War of Magic, a turn-based fantasy strategy, is next on the Stardock schedule. Head to our gamepage below to find out more.

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Robert Purchese

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Bertie is a synonym for Eurogamer. Writes, podcasts, looks after the Supporter Programme. Talks a lot.