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  #1  
Old 08-18-2010, 06:37 PM
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medion medion is offline
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Default A different perspective on Zune HD apps

We've all had our share of issues with MS's app development. To some degree each of us has taken our shots at Dave and/or MS in general for;

-slow app development
-not allowing 3rd parties to develop apps
-lack of variety
-lack of focus
-killing babies (ooh, can we have an MJ baby-drop app!?)

With that said, I recently purchased my first Android phone. My wife uses an Iphone and has done so for 2 and a half years (she just ordered her Iphone 4). With that said;

I will take the free games on Zune HD over the free games on both Android and Iphone COMBINED. The quality of MS's games on Zune HD far surpasses the free games on both platforms in my opinion. I'd say definitely when compared to Android, and possibly when compared to Iphone.

Now, Iphone has a better selection of games, especially paid games and known series (such as Madden, Final Fantasy, Street Fighter, and even Hello Kitty!). Android's paid games are still a bit lacking, but they have some quality titles. Also, the variety is better on these platforms. Zune HD still needs a tower-defense style game, and a proper Tetris-clone. But overall, the Zune HD's games are not lacking, IMO. There are some apps we could all wish for (and Youtube, Last.FM, and Pandora would fit in well with their media-centric theme, but those are all run by 3rd party companies who won't want to sink development resources into a niche platform).
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  #2  
Old 08-18-2010, 06:43 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by medion View Post
I will take the free games on Zune HD over the free games on both Android and Iphone COMBINED. The quality of MS's games on Zune HD far surpasses the free games on both platforms in my opinion. I'd say definitely when compared to Android, and possibly when compared to Iphone.

I agree here. Even though MS is taking a incredibly long time to develop apps, each app has been very high quality and I am very pleased with that. That shows that MS is taking good time into making their apps stable and high quality, rather than releasing a bunch of unstable low quality apps at one time. That's the path that I'd like them to take.
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Old 08-18-2010, 09:27 PM
Icky6 Icky6 is offline
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Well I do have to say I agree to a degree with Medion. I railed against the Zune HD apps for being low quality, but they are, sadly, representative of the higher quality end of the app spectrum. On one hand I like that indie developers have the opportunity to make apps and get them on a PMP or phone (whether it be the ZHD or iPhone or Android), but the budgets they have restrict them from making games with any sort of depth to them.

This is a criticism I level at all touchscreen-based games. I want to play a game that has a story, and gameplay that amounts to more than just launching birds with a slingshot or placing explosive charges on buildings. Again, I realize that budgets are tight, but this is why I have ceased to get excited about the "games" on phones/PMP's. To me, the real attraction of apps is the pocket-computeriness of them - ebook readers, note takers, calculators (ones that don't take 10 seconds to start up *coughZuneHDcough*), Skype, texting. These things are all so useful.

Of course, I still think that the rate at which these Zune HD apps have come out has been pathetic. But they are actually high quality apps, however relative the term "quality" may be.
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Old 08-18-2010, 09:56 PM
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Quote:
This is a criticism I level at all touchscreen-based games. I want to play a game that has a story, and gameplay that amounts to more than just launching birds with a slingshot or placing explosive charges on buildings. Again, I realize that budgets are tight, but this is why I have ceased to get excited about the "games" on phones/PMP's.
Agreed. The only games I ever installed on my WinMo were emulators. Same intent with my new Android.

Quote:
To me, the real attraction of apps is the pocket-computeriness of them - ebook readers, note takers, calculators (ones that don't take 10 seconds to start up *coughZuneHDcough*), Skype, texting. These things are all so useful.
Same here. I just didn't care about this functionality on my PMP, as my Smartphone at the time (and moreso now) already did this. In fact, I just upgraded my old phone (still use as a PDA overseas) to Office 2010. Had I cared about this functionality in a PMP, I would have gotten an Ipod Touch. Even then, it would have been half baked, as when I'm using work related apps, I want mass storage mode so that I can easily transfer the files between a home and work PC.
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Old 08-18-2010, 10:59 PM
Xiamhighx Xiamhighx is offline
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The thing is, they could have opened it up to third parties so they wouldn't only be developing games in-house, and we could've gotten releases more often. They could have stuck to the resource-heavy things like 3d games, facebook, Youtube, etc. and let everyone else make the Tetris clones, checkers, tower defense, or what have you.
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Old 08-18-2010, 11:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Xiamhighx View Post
The thing is, they could have opened it up to third parties so they wouldn't only be developing games in-house, and we could've gotten releases more often. They could have stuck to the resource-heavy things like 3d games, facebook, Youtube, etc. and let everyone else make the Tetris clones, checkers, tower defense, or what have you.
No one is disagreeing with that yet in this thread. I'm more focusing on the quality of apps (specifically, games) when compared to free games on Iphone and Android. We could write a book on the posts that have been made on those other areas.
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Old 08-19-2010, 08:01 AM
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They are pretty good... and free. *hugs his zune*
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Old 08-19-2010, 08:24 AM
Icky6 Icky6 is offline
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Well don't I feel silly.

After having made that post about touchscreen devices not having games with depth, I went on the iTunes App Store and what did I see? Final Fantasy I and II. And Myst. I know those are re-releases, but that is just cool. And touch controls don't seem like they'd get in the way of the gameplay.
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Old 08-19-2010, 08:58 AM
Flyordie Flyordie is offline
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If they need a revenue stream for it, why not restore the ads? Just make sure the ads don't disrupt the music that may be playing in the background.

Ads did not bother me one bit. The only people it bothered were people who have nothing else to do but complain about a device that has a great price/feature ratio.

So, Microsoft... keep doing your thing. It would be great if you could ramp up to 2 Apps per month though, however if thats not possible just keep the quality up. :-)
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Old 08-19-2010, 09:31 AM
turdbogls turdbogls is offline
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personally, i would rather have quantity over quality right now. i have some nice time killers on my android phone right now, non of which i paid for. tetris, pacman, abduction, bonsai blast, bubble popper, 4 teh birds, and a mario clone just to name a few. i can honestly say i didn't play any game for more than an hour total other that solitare and labrynth...and Doom but that was 3rd party, on my HD. if i want a storry line for a game, i most certainly dont want my fingers getting in the way of the screen, an i want to play it on my TV...i have x-box 360 for first person shooters, and story line based games, i only need simple time killers on a portable device, and Android and iOS have those a plenty....now maybe i am the only one that thinks this way, but i seriously doubt it.

but i do agree that zune games are top notch when it comes to graphics and lack of bugs.
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Old 08-19-2010, 09:34 AM
NSILMike NSILMike is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Icky6 View Post
Well don't I feel silly.

After having made that post about touchscreen devices not having games with depth, I went on the iTunes App Store and what did I see? Final Fantasy I and II. And Myst. I know those are re-releases, but that is just cool. And touch controls don't seem like they'd get in the way of the gameplay.
they certainly shouldn't get in the way... they open up all sorts of additional options (hidden touch points, etc.) but they also certainly mean the game designer has to recode the UI. Some will be better, some worse...and it will depend upon the game designer.
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Old 08-19-2010, 09:44 AM
NSILMike NSILMike is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by medion View Post
We've all had our share of issues with MS's app development. To some degree each of us has taken our shots at Dave and/or MS in general for;

-slow app development
-not allowing 3rd parties to develop apps
-lack of variety
-lack of focus

[snipped]

I will take the free games on Zune HD over the free games on both Android and Iphone COMBINED. The quality of MS's games on Zune HD far surpasses the free games on both platforms in my opinion. I'd say definitely when compared to Android, and possibly when compared to Iphone.

Now, Iphone has a better selection of games, especially paid games and known series (such as Madden, Final Fantasy, Street Fighter, and even Hello Kitty!). Android's paid games are still a bit lacking, but they have some quality titles. Also, the variety is better on these platforms. Zune HD still needs a tower-defense style game, and a proper Tetris-clone. But overall, the Zune HD's games are not lacking, IMO. There are some apps we could all wish for (and Youtube, Last.FM, and Pandora would fit in well with their media-centric theme, but those are all run by 3rd party companies who won't want to sink development resources into a niche platform).
1) I think this all essentially ties back to something Dave posted when XNA 4 launched, and there was an outcry about the HD suddenly being left behind. As I recall, part of that discussion from Dave revolved around MS not anticipating the huge demand for apps, and therefore not creating the right infrastructure for a 3rd party apps store. I've read that it even took Apple by surprise. So, maybe a poor decision, and definitely a missed opportunity.
2) I can't compare zune to android at all, and only barely to the iPod (there's a touch in the family, always away at school.) But it doesn't surprise me at all that their (iPhone/iPod) selection is better. It's a competitive 'app' marketplace with income generation... it will attract more, and also attract those that require too much effort to be done for 'free.'

Two essential questions for HD users who want to see this improve are- will MS support a large app market for WP7 (it certainly appears to be yes...) and will this spill over at all to the HD? TBD on that one...unless someone has seen something believable in the press.

Late update: I am now hearing rumors of an app late launching later tonite or tomorrow... timing is everything?

Last edited by NSILMike; 08-19-2010 at 01:19 PM. Reason: Late breaking rumors...
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  #13  
Old 08-19-2010, 03:47 PM
FallenArms3 FallenArms3 is offline
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There is a way for third-party devs to submit apps. They just have to undergo the same scrutiny as official partners. It's not an efficient process, but I agree with the OP- it yields a great crop of apps.
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