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Microsoft Windows DEAD¡™ - Elf M. Sternberg
Microsoft Windows DEAD¡™
I cannot imagine a more user-hostile experience than the one I just had using Microsoft Windows LIVE!™. So, although it was offered on Steam for $19.99, I bought Bioshock II for $19.95 at Fry's, expecting it would be the same experience.

I am never, ever, ever again buying anything "Made for Windows Live." Never.

First, I installed the game, only to be told "You must have a profile with Windows Live!™ to save your games. Do you want to create a profile?" No, you dumbass, I don't want to be able to save my games. Fuck you. I hit "Yes" and went through the process of giving it miscellaneous intimate information.

The game crashed. I tried again, and it crashed again. Apparently, it needed to terminate the Bioshock process, but being a child process of the game, when the game ended, so did it.

I ran Microsoft Windows LIVE!™ as a standalone process. It crashed. I looked; there was a hotfix. I downloaded it, and ran it, and while it was running I pulled up Firefox to write this.

Firefox crashed, I thought. No, it wasn't Firefox crashing, it was Windows rebooting without so much as a "bye your leave." It was just going down.

After it rebooted, I ran Bioshock again. And again there was an update. This time, it ran fine, but it had to "restart the game process." After that, it had to "download your profile," which apparently is a three-minute delay I'll have to suffer through every time I boot the game. And it's a Microsoft-branded overlay, in that blued chrome style that, while actually quite nice on its own, is a complete and utter clash with the beautiful art deco art style of Bioshock, a brand-identity reminder that Steve Ballmer owns your ass, which I find ironic given the ownership society mentality at the heart of Rapture.


Oh, and it gets better. As many of you know, I'm a Dvorak typist. I remapped the keys so that I could play the game without having to set the keyboard back to QWERTY. It seemed to work fine.

In the middle of the first boss combat scene against Big Sister, the keyboard suddenly went back to QWERTY. My keymappings were hosed. I died.

No reason given. None at all. When I tried to get out of the game, it crashed.

Fuck you, Microsoft. Fuck you hard. May you lose half a billion dollars per quarter on your so-called "Internet Strategies" now and forever for burdening the world with this fecal bacterial colony you call Windows, until there's no money left at all.

If I have a choice between Steam and LIVE!™, I'm going for Steam. They, at least, have a vested interest in writing and providing authentication plug-ins that work.
13 comments or Leave a comment
psi_star_psi From: psi_star_psi Date: March 28th, 2011 04:46 am (UTC) (Link)
That was my reaction also. Though it appears your experience contained a lot more crashing for bonus frustration. Please accept my sympathy.
sianmink From: sianmink Date: March 28th, 2011 04:51 am (UTC) (Link)
It lies. you don't need a profile to save your games. You can make an offline profile and just not worry. Of course they don't make this clear.

Still, it's a terrible interface.
ionotter From: ionotter Date: March 28th, 2011 04:57 am (UTC) (Link)
There's a perfectly logical explanation, of course?

The software detected the Linux partition on your machine and was deliberately ordered to malfunction and crash repeatedly.

To punish you, after all.

Heathens aren't permitted to set foot in the temple of Micro$oft, and those that do must suffer.

Edited at 2011-03-28 04:57 am (UTC)
kymri From: kymri Date: March 28th, 2011 05:21 am (UTC) (Link)
To be fair I had a similar experience (less the Dvorak issue). To make matters worse I did purchase BioShock II through Steam and still had to deal with the Games for Windows LIVE crap, including getting it installed, signed in, etc.
elbowfetish From: elbowfetish Date: March 28th, 2011 07:00 am (UTC) (Link)
Live is excellent if you're using a recent version of Outlook or have the current messenger client. And with Sharepoint (that Google Buzz was trying to copy, but without the science behind it). I don't use Steam on Windows or MacOS and don't know how it works with Windows Live. Similar games to Bioshock certainly work well with Xbox Live, though I've personally only tried Mass Effect (recommended) and Halo Reach.

I'm sure you can find your way through after some meditation time. :-)
elfs From: elfs Date: March 28th, 2011 06:30 pm (UTC) (Link)
mikstera From: mikstera Date: March 29th, 2011 01:55 pm (UTC) (Link)

I shed a tear for my beloved Amiga, a computer far ahead of its time, made by a company that didn't realize what it had on its hands... and wonder what the world would have been like if the Amiga had become the dominant machine of its time, instead of what IBM excreted.
elfs From: elfs Date: March 29th, 2011 02:07 pm (UTC) (Link)
I miss my Amiga too. I had the manuals, the big thick guides to every operating system structure down to the metal. Those were amazing chunks of education. My father thought it was a waste of money for me to not have a PC or a Mac, but I couldn't program on those. My Amiga had three different C compilers, and learning that there were differences, and why, made me a decent programmer.
From: foshka Date: March 28th, 2011 07:56 am (UTC) (Link)
me too kymri

I bought bioshock i & ii (because I saw the trailer for the upcoming bioshock) on steam as well, and when I tried to play ii got the very rude shock of windows live. Had the same experience crashing alt-tabbing reinstalling and updating that elf did.

Steam is great for many things, but it doesn't fix everything.
bikerwalla From: bikerwalla Date: March 28th, 2011 11:42 am (UTC) (Link)
I'll be saving the money I would have spent on Bioshock II, then.
dv_girl From: dv_girl Date: March 28th, 2011 04:47 pm (UTC) (Link)
There's nary a day that goes by where I regret getting rid of my Windows machine back in 2002. Looking back, I would seriously compare the reasons I continued using it to the reasons people stay in abusive relationships. It was familiar, it would cost me money to leave, the alternatives might not be better, etc. But once I got away from it, I realized just how bad it was. Every now and then I have to use it at work or a friend's house and I'm just stunned by how crap it is. Mac OS-X feels much snappier and more modern even on a vastly slower processor and some of the latest Ubuntu UIs, while not as quick as the ones on the mac, are still faster and more responsive than the Windows ones and they overall seem better organized and easier to use. Windows is incredibly slow and dated. I'm really surprised how many people are still using it.

I'm guessing that Android will be the real killer of Windows though. Lots of people only need as much as a phone for most of the stuff they want to do on a computer and since we consider a phone something separate from a computer and it's a cheaper entry point, I think you'll find more and more people shifting to using their phone for more and more stuff and thinking, "What do I need that boat anchor for anyhow?"
elbowfetish From: elbowfetish Date: March 29th, 2011 02:50 am (UTC) (Link)
Android doesn't work for phones. It will be interesting to see what develops for the tablet market though.
nbarnes From: nbarnes Date: March 30th, 2011 02:40 am (UTC) (Link)
May you lose half a billion dollars per quarter on your so-called "Internet Strategies" now and forever for burdening the world with this fecal bacterial colony you call Windows, until there's no money left at all.

I'm fond of speculating in mixed company about how many digits you need to measure the amount of money Microsoft set fire to by releasing Vista. It can't be fewer than 8. MS's ability to continue to burn money on iterative attempts to grok the Internet is truly impressive.
13 comments or Leave a comment