GCN LAB IMPRESSIONS

How Windows 8 gets in the games

When GCN recently asked government readers what questions they had about Windows 8, we got back a variety of responses that we will try to answer all in our Windows 8 review feature in October. One of those questions seemed a little funny, but it is worth an answer for a variety of reasons.

The questions was: “Will Pinball be included in Windows 8?”

The answer is more complicated that you might think. First, no, it’s not there natively as far as I can see from the review copy of Windows 8. But Microsoft is doing some neat things with the operating system, like tying it into Xbox Live, or a version of Xbox Live.


Related:

5 keyboard shortcuts you won’t find in Windows 8


The Xbox Live service is how gamers playing on Xbox 360 communicate with each other and download games. Windows 8 users will be able to access a limited number of these services through their Live connections with the new OS, including, yes, a pinball title. These games seem to be direct ports from the Xbox Live versions.

The ease of this connection to the games might prove to be a problem for federal workstations, where presumably administrators would not want Big Buck Hunter installed. There could even be a few security issues if the games upload data to servers for high scores or achievement trophies. But that’s something we can look at another day.

The 32 games slated to launch with Windows 8, which can be purchased and added to the OS like any other app, are: 4 Elements II Special Edition, A World of Keflings, Angry Birds, Angry Birds Space, Big Buck Hunter Pro, BlazBlue Calamity Trigger, Collateral Damage, Crash Course GO, Cut the Rope, Disney Fairies, Dragon’s Lair, Field & Stream Fishing, Fruit Ninja, Gravity Guy, Gunstringer: Dead Man Running, IloMilo, iStunt 2 Jetpack Joyride, Kinectimals Unleashed, Monster Island, PAC-MAN Championship DX Edition, Pinball FX 2, Reckless Racing Ultimate, Rocket Riot 3D, Shark Dash, Shuffle Party, Skulls of the Shogun, Taptiles, Team Crossword, The Harvest HD, Toy Soldiers Cold War and Zombies.

From a gamer perspective, it will be interesting to see how titles like The Gunstringer, which normally requires a Kinect device with the Xbox 360 to play, will work on a desktop running Windows 8. But at least you will have access to Pinball.

 

About the Author

John Breeden II is a freelance technology writer for GCN.

Reader Comments

Wed, Sep 12, 2012 PinBall Wizard

At least I can now rest and know that I dont have to work much with my employers computers they are installing W8 onto, I can just continue to be a slug and play pinball all day. Man I love you guys at Zen Studio, you think of everything for us Government employees!PS, thank you Tax Payers for allowing me to really earn my money.

Wed, Sep 12, 2012 WiLL Colorado

Besides having a solid mobile OS, Microsoft has never addressed the absence of a solid app store or any viable app strategy for that matter. Having a great OS is nice, but you need to have something other than business software. Today’s mobile devices are being used for EVERYTHING and most people do not like to carry more than one device (game apps are no exception). I seriously hope Microsoft does it right this time as they have the potential and resources to make an impact.

Wed, Sep 12, 2012 Russ Virginia

Games for Windows is what drew me to the Win 7 upgrade. I am a bit leary of the next Windows update as it relates to PC Games.

Tue, Sep 11, 2012 Neil

Hello! Our pinball game (Pinball FX 2)will indeed be on the windows 8 store at launch. It will come with 1 free, fully functional table and have others that can be purchased if you decide you want more. We at Zen Studios all played lots of the Space Cadet table in past years and wanted to make sure that Windows users again had a free pinball table to play.

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