Microsoft Makes Halo 2 a Vista-only Title

The BBC reports that Microsoft has decided to limit the PC version of the popular and multiple award winning Halo 2 Xbox game to the Vista operating system. Vista is expected to come out later this year but it still has not been confirmed by Microsoft. There will not be a version of Halo 2 for Windows XP.
Deciding to make the best-selling Halo 2 Xbox game a Vista-only title is likely driven by Microsoft's desire to get people upgrading to the new version of the Windows.

Minimum specifications for Vista (formerly called Longhorn) will be released in the summer but information gathered from reviews of pre-release versions have given clues about its hunger for computer power.

With Vista, Microsoft has made big changes to the way it handles graphics. Unlike other versions of Windows, it will need an advanced video card to get the most out of it.

It is also likely to demand a lot of computer memory and a sizeable hard drive. While these requirements are likely to be met by dedicated players who want to get the most out of games, many less keen players could struggle to comply.
The BBC also says Microsoft's decision could make it a costly one for gamers who have to buy Vista as well as new PC hardware just to play Halo 2. It is really the wrong path Microsoft has taken with Halo 2. They already angered gamers with the Xbox 360 delay. Instead of doing a Vista-only release they should have gone ahead with a version supporting the current Windows XP operating system. Bungie, the developers of Halo 2, posted that they aren't jerks who are trying to force people to upgrade to Vista.
But we're not idiots and we're not jerks. We realize that the underlying sentiment here, is that there are a lot of XP (and Mac) users out there, who feel like something has been wafted under their nose and then snatched away. Well, that's simply not our intention. We want as many people to enjoy as good a version of our game as possible, but the fact remains that when Microsoft publishes Halo 2 for PC - it will have released its new, bigger, better operating system and our game will take full advantage of that fact, and Microsoft will take full advantage of our game.
Gadgetspy also has a faq about the Vista version of Halo 2. Checking a few messages in the blogosphere you can see hundreds of blog posts about Microsoft's decision and some of them are unhappy posts by unhappy gamers.

Posted on February 20, 2006

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