Games For Windows Live

The gaming community created and managed by Microsoft

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5.3

449 Votes

  • Category Various Utilities
  • Program license Free
  • Version 3.5.50
  • Size 73.85 MB
  • Works under: Windows 2000 / Windows Vista / Windows XP
  • Program available in English
  • Program by Microsoft

Games for Windows Live is, as the name implies, an online gaming community for Microsoft users to play against opponents from all over the world. It is available in 41 countries – the same countries in which Xbox Live is available as the communities are somewhat related, both being operated by Microsoft. Players from other countries can sign up and access games on Game for Windows Live, but they will have to choose a gamertag from a country that does support the service and they will not be able to access the technical help and support facilities.

Users sign up and choose the name that they will play under. This is known as a gamertag. Players who have used Xbox Live will recognise this system as it is identical to the one used in online Xbox interactions. Once signed in, players can access a huge variety of games (with many more being added every year). Players work to boost their Gamerscore (an overall rating of their skills and achievements) by playing their favourite games, either solo or as part of a team or multi-player game. Users can send and receive text messages, communicate with live voice-chat (during games), check friends' statuses and update their own as well as playing games for fun or in order to earn rewards or achievements.

There are some games that crossover from Xbox Live to Games for Windows Live allowing Xbox players to team up with or against Microsoft PS gamers in certain games.

Third-party developers can submit their offerings to Games for Windows Live, but there is no chance of substandard work making its way through the system: each developers must attain certain standards of skill, called Technical Certification Requirements or TCR. Developers can benefit from strong support from the Microsoft Developer XNA Developer Connection which helps to grow a new skilled generation of developers even as it ensures uniformly high-standard work on the platform.

Initially, Microsoft wanted to charge as much as US$50.00 per month for using the service, but after a great deal of protest from gamers they decide to scrap the price once more.

Pros

  • Access to hundreds of popular games
  • Community for like-minded gamers from all over the world to get together and play
  • Fun features to inspire players to beat their best score and increase their overall Gamerscore
  • Plenty of upgrades and improvements constantly being made

Cons

  • Only available in countries serviced by Xbox Live (as they use the same platform). This means players outside these areas cannot access technical help and support
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