the new mac: i, CARmac

the new year is here.

some of my friends call themselves ‘gamesluts’ because they will play any and all games. i used to be like that, but with time as one of the primary resources i’ve been trying to manage over the last few years, i have become somewhat picky. i generally give a game 30 minutes–if it doesn’t grab me, i dump it and move on. i am seeking some particular (immersive, chilling or strategically interesting) experiences, sans pain and suffering due to bad interface and other stupidness. my favorite game of the old year: THIEF. favorite game of the new year (so far): the S.M.A.C. demo.

anyway, on to the real issue today: i’ve always moved to whichever platform i’ve felt was better for the gamer. (commodore, atari 1040st, amiga, pc.) the pc has reigned supreme for some time and continues to do so. i just read a story that seems to imply that the winds of change are blowing. but this is the first time that mac has done anything to create enthusiasm in me personally.

some features this kickass new mac is supposed to have:

carmack’s endorsement–that is pretty much the ultimate game industry validation in my book.

handles on the case–wow, you mean i don’t have to struggle with a near-frictionless box that weighs more than my gamer-atrophied muscles can handle just to get my pc home for the weekend? this is, in my opinion, the modern equivalent of creating the wheel.

a door–so to get inside your machine and change out hardware, instead of nicking your senstive little geek hands on archaic screws and flimsy metal casings, you simply pop down a hinged door.

colored cases–yes, believe it or not, some of us in the dark-bedroom/play-games-for-12-hours culture actually have some personality…we don’t all want pale, bloodlessly corporate cases and peripherals. if i had my way, my pc would be black with whammo glow-in-the-dark goblin green trim.

open gl support–which seems to excite the programmers…something about not having to rewrite millions of lines of code just to make a game work on a mac and a pc. marketing and sales should get behind this too, since it makes their dream of cross-platform simultaneous release more likely.

game developer support–why did it take people so long to realize that gamers are the drivers of the computer/internet/hardware world. “early adopters.” like porn was to the vcr.

seductive marketing–the mac people are trying to make us all warm and tingly about buying their computers like the vw people are doing with the new bug commericals. here’s a free commercial campaign idea: show people (ok, chicks in underwear mostly) using their imacs to engage in sex-chat over the net, contrasted by scenes of us pc drones sitting in a ‘data processing room’ like members of the borg collective. this would sell a million macs.

rage 128 graphics accelerator card–kickass.

100 meg ethernet connection–faster network access.

conclusion: pc manufacturers need to wake up. the features mentioned above would be easy to do. don’t be arrogant and think that the world is too pc-ingrained to switch. we are fickle, i promise you that. remember how ibm lost most of its empire?

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