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Smartphones, Tablets and Handheld Computing From Android, Symbian to Apple devices, this is the place for discussion and debate, whether it's smartphones, tablets or even gaming handhelds.

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Old Dec 26, 2010, 02:35 PM   #1
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Default Turning point for Android gaming?

So it appears we're about to see a substantial shift in 2011 as far as the best mobile gaming platform goes. First you have Nvidia's Tegra2 chip finally making its way into several new phones, which basically blows the iPhone 4 out of the water and might mark the start of Nvidia's graphic dominance in the mobile sector (Nvidia claims Tegra 3 is done and will launch mid 2011, and is already designing Tegra 4).

Then you have the Playstation Phone which brings a major shift to Android as a gaming platform. This (my opinion) will trigger a halo effect for developers and "copycat" phones. The PSP games will not be cartridge based, but downloaded and running on Honeycomb, which brings up an interesting topic of whether or not hackers can succeed in hacking/emulating PSP games for other Android phones.

Epic already has an android version of Unreal Tournament demoed, and Mark Rein stated it will be released for Android "soon." Right now, despite having more than capable hardware, Android gaming is less than iOS. There's more money to made with iOS, and there's no big developer/company taking the lead with Android as far as gaming.

However, I think the turning point is rapidly approaching thanks to Nvidia and Sony (and Google of course). This is kind of like the point when Android first started, the Apple fanboys laughed at the notion of Android surpassing the Iphone, but suddenly fell silent when it actually happened.

Is history about to repeat itself now with iOS gaming vs Android gaming? All indicators point to YES.
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Old Dec 26, 2010, 02:44 PM   #2
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Android 2.3 and 3.0 are also supposed to take steps towards making game development easier.
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Old Dec 26, 2010, 05:13 PM   #3
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Might be a big shift coming but I don't expect android to eclipse iOs in gaming this year.

One reason why android has taken on more people is because they have a million different models on all carriers. That's probably the main reason why they won't overtake iOS gaming this year. Sure they'll get a couple of AAA games but nowhere near as many as iOS. Not to long back someone posted a link to a page where dungeon defenders( a game already on iOS) announced it's release. The problem with that though is it actually had to list the android phones it was compatible with, and there were only like 15(compared to the zillions of android phones). On iOS there are only 3 devices they have to worry about to get their game to hundreds of thousands of people. Developers want to dev on the platform that will give them the broadest audience. Since apple makes it easier to obtain and find a game compared to android they will win there.

On the hardware front, even though Android is getting more than capable hardware, you will see the console effect on mobile gaming. Android will have powerful phones(the pc), but be bottlenecked by their lower end phones(consoles) and mobile gaming will not advance any faster than it is. Fragmentation may hold android gaming back and a lot of devs jumping to it.
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Old Dec 26, 2010, 06:31 PM   #4
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Android really got popular back when Droid one came out. Which was almost or just over 1 year ago. It was released with Android 2.0 which I don't believe any device is running anymore. Apple has had an at least 2 year jump on Android in that sense.

2011 may be the year for Android. Unless Apple does something drastic to iOS it's going to fall behind. Simply put, too many phones are being released with the Android OS. Good for Google, bad for Apple. I'm not saying Apple has a bad device, but with all the different manufacturers of phones using the Android OS it's going to be hard to keep up soon.

Developers will move where more devices are. From what I see the Android OS is going up in popularity.
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Old Dec 26, 2010, 07:34 PM   #5
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Hopefully there is some standardization in hardware, that would go a long way in helping devs get the most out of the hardware going forward. I mean, if only 2% of the hardware is using Tegra, devs aren't going to be programming with Tegra in mind too often.

What I like about iOS and Android, is that they aren't limited to phones only. Even if Android gets to the point where it has games I cannot live without, all I have to do is buy an Android tab for cheap and go to town. Works the other way around too.

Competition is healthy for the consumer, so I welcome Android as a viable competitor in the gaming realm.

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Old Dec 26, 2010, 08:30 PM   #6
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Developers will move where more devices are. From what I see the Android OS is going up in popularity.
Thats where the problem is for android and gaming though. There are so many devices with so many configurations, where do they draw the line of who to cut out and who not to when they develop games? I still think apple has the advantage even though their are more android users.

Im talking strictly gaming though, nothing to do with phone market share or anything else.
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Old Dec 26, 2010, 08:34 PM   #7
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Thats where the problem is for android and gaming though. There are so many devices with so many configurations, where do they draw the line of who to cut out and who not to when they develop games? I still think apple has the advantage even though their are more android users.

Im talking strictly gaming though, nothing to do with phone market share or anything else.
Perhaps we should wait to see how Google addresses this in 2.3 and 3.0 eh?
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Old Dec 26, 2010, 08:36 PM   #8
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Perhaps we should wait to see how Google addresses this in 2.3 and 3.0 eh?
What can they do from a hardware standpoint? They make the OS not the hardware, unless they are going to change the requirements for having android on a device to something uniform. It doesnt matter what version of android on a device.
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Old Dec 26, 2010, 08:44 PM   #9
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What can they do from a hardware standpoint? They make the OS not the hardware, unless they are going to change the requirements for having android on a device to something uniform. It doesnt matter what version of android on a device.
Same thing MS can do with Direct X, same thing OpenGL compliant video cards can do. A standard API. If graphically intensive games are all OpenGL ES 2.0 games, why would hardware matter so much, as long as it's compliant? The CPU's are all basically compatible as it is.

Version of Android does matter, newer versions have added API's.
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Old Dec 26, 2010, 08:49 PM   #10
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Android really got popular back when Droid one came out. Which was almost or just over 1 year ago. It was released with Android 2.0 which I don't believe any device is running anymore. Apple has had an at least 2 year jump on Android in that sense.

2011 may be the year for Android. Unless Apple does something drastic to iOS it's going to fall behind. Simply put, too many phones are being released with the Android OS. Good for Google, bad for Apple. I'm not saying Apple has a bad device, but with all the different manufacturers of phones using the Android OS it's going to be hard to keep up soon.

Developers will move where more devices are. From what I see the Android OS is going up in popularity.
I wouldn't say it is bad for apple. I bet if you look at the numbers you will find the number of apple users is still rising. Things are just settling to their natural equilibrium where apple supplies a certain and fanatic market segment for a minority user base and the broad range of android devices take the rest. So they got something for everyone.

Basically apple makes one product and no matter how good a product is it will only ever be able to satisfy more than a certain percentage of the market. Android on the other hand covers the full range of smart phones from small low powered devices to super phones for power users.
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Old Dec 26, 2010, 08:50 PM   #11
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Same thing MS can do with Direct X, same thing OpenGL compliant video cards can do. A standard API. If graphically intensive games are all OpenGL ES 2.0 games, why would hardware matter so much, as long as it's compliant? The CPU's are all basically compatible as it is.

Version of Android does matter, newer versions have added API's.
All android devices dont have the same GPU.. android can add standard APIs but if the hardware doesnt support it, it wont mean much. OGL and DX need hardware that supports it, android would need the same.
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Old Dec 26, 2010, 08:56 PM   #12
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Higher ended apps aren't going to work on low end devices. It's that simple.

iPhone 4 games tailored to iPhone 4's hardware won't work on 3Gs or 3G iPhone's. The problem exists on both iOS and Android.

Whether the developer wants to support devices running lower OS versions/slower hardware is their choice.

If anything it's the consumer not keeping up with the hardware. And you can blame your carrier for that. Locking people into 2 year contracts.
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Old Dec 26, 2010, 08:57 PM   #13
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All android devices dont have the same GPU.. android can add standard APIs but if the hardware doesnt support it, it wont mean much. OGL and DX need hardware that supports it, android would need the same.
Android has the same, hence I mentioned OpenGL ES 2.0.
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Old Dec 26, 2010, 09:02 PM   #14
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Higher ended apps aren't going to work on low end devices. It's that simple.

iPhone 4 games tailored to iPhone 4's hardware won't work on 3Gs or 3G iPhone's. The problem exists on both iOS and Android.

Whether the developer wants to support devices running lower OS versions/slower hardware is their choice.

If anything it's the consumer not keeping up with the hardware. And you can blame your carrier for that. Locking people into 2 year contracts.
I cant think of any game that is iPhone 4 only, there are iPhone 4 versions, but not iPhone 4 only games. Just now developers are starting to cut out the original iPhone and 3G.

The problems exists on the iOS but nowhere as big as the problem is on android. The baseline for iOS is the 3GS... whats the baseline for android?
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Old Dec 26, 2010, 09:12 PM   #15
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This is an argument that will never be settled.

Android is a free OS that allows manufacturers to integrate on their phone with no cost to them. Manufacturers are going to offer high and low range devices, just as they did in the past, before Apple and before and app store. These devices are going to vary. 4 years ago people weren't concerned with social networking, gaming and all the other ****. Most didn't even have smartphones. If you were lucky you had a PDA which even by todays standards sucked.

The only issue we have is that the hardware is not lasting as long as the software. New devices are coming out every few months. That's not Android's fault, nor the manufacturer. It's the lifecycle of a product. This problem is present on everything. PCs, TVs, cars.. etc. No matter what you have it will not last. Even of you own a console or Apple device you still never know when the time is right to own one. Apple updates its devices every year. Unless you buy one when it's released you don't get your money's worth for the products life. Same goes with anything.

This is a 'problem' that won't go away.

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Old Dec 26, 2010, 09:24 PM   #16
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True, but since Apple has a longer life cycle with their products, it makes it easier for devs to pick a platform where they know there will be users that can buy their apps.

Since android hardware gets released, what seems like every month, they are at a disadvantage gaming wise.

Of course there is always something new around the corner, thats just a given. But that around the corner comes later for Apple than android.


Heres that dungeon defenders game that just got released on android:

http://www.androidcentral.com/dungeo...cing-announced

How many android phones meet these requirement(that dont have custom roms):

Quote:
512 MB RAM
GPU capable of OpenGL ES 2.0
Android 2.1 Eclair
800 Mhz CPU or greater recommended
SD card with at least 400 MB free storage
Only the newest androids have 512mb of ram?
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Old Dec 26, 2010, 09:31 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by logical View Post
True, but since Apple has a longer life cycle with their products, it makes it easier for devs to pick a platform where they know there will be users that can buy their apps.

Since android hardware gets released, what seems like every month, they are at a disadvantage gaming wise.

Of course there is always something new around the corner, thats just a given. But that around the corner comes later for Apple than android.


Heres that dungeon defenders game that just got released on android:

http://www.androidcentral.com/dungeo...cing-announced

How many android phones meet these requirement(that dont have custom roms):

Only the newest androids have 512mb of ram?
Most every phone since the Nexus One...
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Old Dec 26, 2010, 09:32 PM   #18
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Do be honest I perfer not to play any type of 3D intense game on my phone. But I am DL'ing this on my Galaxy Tab

Looks like Samsung Galaxy Devices are high end. Didn't they sell almost 10 million

I'm much more into the simpler, time consuming, engulfing games.
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Old Dec 26, 2010, 09:41 PM   #19
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Thats where the problem is for android and gaming though. There are so many devices with so many configurations, where do they draw the line of who to cut out and who not to when they develop games? I still think apple has the advantage even though their are more android users.

Im talking strictly gaming though, nothing to do with phone market share or anything else.
If you're a pc gamer, then you should see the absurdity of this argument. Having different options for Android is a GOOD thing, and this is the reason why it skyrocketed ahead of the iphone in marketshare.

All that matters is a software standard, and for Android phones that's OpenGL. Angry birds is completely OpenGL compliant...it didn't care that my wife's viewsonic tablet had a tegra 2. Just like in pc gaming, doesn't matter if your card is ATI, NVIDIA, Intel, matrix, etc...

Android developer adoption is occuring much faster than you think, and it will surpass ios gaming in 2011 if current trends continue for reasons I stated above. To ignore it, or to wish it otherwise, is typical Apple fanaticism that has made Apple fanboys the laughing stock of the tech industry.
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But hey, let us not forget that while you bemoan about how Hollywood is bending over backwards for that market, you're also asking them to simultaneously consider the 'delicate' sensibilities of those state side who need to see a flag plastered all over the place like some Michael Bay movie barfed into another equally worse Michael Bay movie that then **** into the mouth of the team who designs the Call of Duty campaigns with all of their red, white and blue awesomeness with such an overly large boner for America that one does not need to actually 'fly' to the moon, they simply could tight rope on top if it. And if you're concerned about whether or not that penis is strong enough to be load bearing for such a journey, you forget that what fills all of those engorged crevices is freedom.
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Old Dec 26, 2010, 09:55 PM   #20
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Quote:
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Do be honest I prefer not to play any type of 3D intense game on my phone.
What did you play?

I'm really digging Dungeon Hunter 2, Mission Europa, Real Racing 2, Aralon and Mirror's Edge at the present time.
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Old Dec 26, 2010, 09:56 PM   #21
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What did you play?

I'm really digging Dungeon Hunter 2, Mission Europa, Real Racing 2, Aralon and Mirror's Edge at the present time.
I have dungeon hunter 2 but meh. The screen is too small to enjoy the game.

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Old Dec 26, 2010, 10:03 PM   #22
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I have dungeon hunter 2 but meh. The screen is too small to enjoy the game.
Which device do you have?

I didn't have any issues with it being too small, but perhaps my eyes are just different, I suppose not everyone is physiologically the same. I just play it about 10-15" from my face, and 960x640 allows for plenty of detail imo. I imagine it wouldn't be as nice on an older device, but I didn't have any problem with the first Dungeon Hunter either on my old 3g and its 480x320 display.

I like the game so much that I beat it three times right in a row, with only short sleep breaks in between. Most fun I had with a hack and slash game since torchlight. I just wish it was longer, but for the price there was plenty of gameplay. It lets you go through on higher difficulties each time and keep your stuff, and ramps up the equipment and difficulty of enemies to match. I wish there was a mode beyond heroic, ah well.

But if you have trouble seeing 3d graphics on a smaller display, I can understand why you would avoid it. I would hate to be in your shoes in that regard though as many of my favorite iPhone games utilize 3d graphics anymore.

Edit: Were there any other 3d games that you played on your device though that I might have heard of? Seems strange to me to not be able to play 3d games on a small screen. Did you never have a PSP or DS or anything?

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Old Dec 26, 2010, 10:10 PM   #23
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Droid Incredible, 3.7" screen. The resolution and size aren't the issue... I just personally find it hard to get into games like that on my phone.
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Old Dec 26, 2010, 11:23 PM   #24
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If you're a pc gamer, then you should see the absurdity of this argument. Having different options for Android is a GOOD thing, and this is the reason why it skyrocketed ahead of the iphone in marketshare.
Is that why closed system consoles games have greatly overtaken open-system PC games development?
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Old Dec 26, 2010, 11:36 PM   #25
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Is that why closed system consoles games have greatly overtaken open-system PC games development?
Not directed at you necessarily, but that reminds me.

I just don't get why it has to be one or the other and all or nothing. What is wrong with both platforms being awesome for gaming? That seems like the best possible result to me, and so that is what I will hope for. Being a fanboy to the point of wanting to see another platform die just strikes me as seriously petty.

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Old Dec 26, 2010, 11:49 PM   #26
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Is that why closed system consoles games have greatly overtaken open-system PC games development?
Piracy has always been the #1 reason stated by developers. Besides, PC gaming is quite strong these days...more PC games are sold (retail or digital download) than any single console, and most top tier games are also developed for PC with extra content/detail in mind.
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But hey, let us not forget that while you bemoan about how Hollywood is bending over backwards for that market, you're also asking them to simultaneously consider the 'delicate' sensibilities of those state side who need to see a flag plastered all over the place like some Michael Bay movie barfed into another equally worse Michael Bay movie that then **** into the mouth of the team who designs the Call of Duty campaigns with all of their red, white and blue awesomeness with such an overly large boner for America that one does not need to actually 'fly' to the moon, they simply could tight rope on top if it. And if you're concerned about whether or not that penis is strong enough to be load bearing for such a journey, you forget that what fills all of those engorged crevices is freedom.
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Old Dec 26, 2010, 11:53 PM   #27
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Piracy has always been the #1 reason stated by developers. Besides, PC gaming is quite strong these days...more PC games are sold (retail or digital download) than any single console, and most top tier games are also developed for PC with extra content/detail in mind.
One word comes to mind here... Steam.
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Old Dec 27, 2010, 04:36 AM   #28
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i have this game for samsung galaxy s i9000
IMO it is getting better, the quality of the game is top notch for android device.
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Old Dec 27, 2010, 08:53 AM   #29
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Piracy has always been the #1 reason stated by developers.
Piracy exists just as much on consoles, and yet their sales numbers are still much higher.

I don't buy that piracy ever had a substantial impact on sales. I'm very convinced that people just want to plug n play, and closed system offer an easier way for developers to get that content to consumers.

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Besides, PC gaming is quite strong these days...more PC games are sold (retail or digital download) than any single console, and most top tier games are also developed for PC with extra content/detail in mind.
I find this statement to be highly dubious. With unclear DD numbers, we can only really talk about retail sales. PC games are not selling well in retail, most retailers have clearly reduced their PC game shelf space in favor of console games. Taking Call of Duty Black Ops as a recent example, vgchartz has estimated that ~9M units were sold on 360 vs less than 1M on PC. Even big name PC game like Starcraft II sold what, less than 3M?

I can't think of the last crossplatform title to have PC-only content (save Dragon Age's isometric view). In fact, with developers being pushed to consolize everything (Mass Effect sequels, Dragon Age sequels, Fallout series, etc), I see a very clear preference for the closed system environment on their side.

The point I was trying to make originally is that closed system development seems to be where the industry wants to go. It really makes no sense for developers to try and unify a fragmented marketplace under their product. Nor would it make sense for mobile games to be developed with upcoming hardware in mind (to parallel PC game development) since most people will be locked in a phone contract for 2-3 years. I think this is where logical hits a good point, with iDevices being limited to 1 or 2 recent generations and very similar hardware sets, developers will always have an edge at developing, testing, and releasing on the iOS platform. And making money as a prime incentive, I can't see why they would otherwise choose an unproven and technically-more-difficult market with upcoming Android hardware.

I think it's great that iOS will get more competition, but I'd like to also think that most of it will come from seasoned development and standardized hardware with WP7, not Android this year.
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Old Dec 27, 2010, 08:59 AM   #30
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Not directed at you necessarily, but that reminds me.

I just don't get why it has to be one or the other and all or nothing. What is wrong with both platforms being awesome for gaming? That seems like the best possible result to me, and so that is what I will hope for. Being a fanboy to the point of wanting to see another platform die just strikes me as seriously petty.
I agree, having the choice to play on anything is the best option. However, the content that you play is created by others trying to make a living. Do we want game-makers to divide their efforts (and subsequently, the quality of the end product) by taking on multiple platforms? Or would we rather play on less platforms and get better quality games? Tough call.
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