Which Microsoft Creation Is More Despised: Clippy? Or Games For Windows Live?

Which Microsoft Creation Is More Despised: Clippy? Or Games For Windows Live?
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Maybe I’m the only one keeping score every time this is noted, but Max Payne 3 is the latest game to say hell no, we’re not using Games For Windows Live. A tweet Wednesday from Rockstar, as noticed by PC Gamer, says it straight up.

Being not a PC gamer or a Windows user, I only know there are 226,000 results for searching the phrases (both with quotation marks around them) “games for windows live” and “piece of shit”. While not an official survey of customer satisfaction, it’s one indicator that the five-year-old service is not and never has been well liked. I’ve never read anything complimentary about it.

“GFWL”, which sounds like an internet abbreviation for Go F**k With Leather or something, “is unpopular, difficult to use, inconvenient, and can be very annoying for many users”, says a petition now at 22,271 signatures, demanding that Dark Souls not use it when the game releases on PC. I want to know more — and that’s a serious question.

Consider this your open thread to unload on Games For Windows Live. Why is it still around? Does anyone get anything out of it?


  • Games For Windows Live! Kill it! Kill it!

    Good news about Max Payne 3, Now they just need to deliver a clean GTA V and we’re good.

    Note that if you aren’t logged into GFWL (or don’t have an internet connection) you cannot ever save your progress in GTA IV (unless this has changed recently?)

  • Well to quickly answer which one is more despised, Clippy isn’t around any more and if memory serves me right he could easily be turned off.

  • Being a console gamer most of gaming life I had no what GFWL was until I got Dawn of War 2. The first thing that really p***ed me off was the fact it had to connect to steam, even though I had bought a hard copy, and then this stupid GFWL comes up. Took me hours to finally get to sign in without crashes.

    • That could be interesting:
      “It looks like you are launching Arkham City. Would like me to erase your progress and stop acknowledging your achievements?”

  • I think its even more stupid when a game on Steam also uses GFWL, like Fable 3.
    Layer upon layer upon layer (strudels should be eaten, not developed into software)

  • Am I the only one who actually doesn’t mind GFWL? Maybe it’s because I came to PC gaming after years of solely being on Xbox, but why is it so hated when it is just basically another Steam? I like getting achievements for my games that show up on my console as well. It baffles me why PC gamers hate it so much.

    • Yes you are. Don’t worry its only a matter of time before it decides you have had enough of a particular game or decides you would have more fun without your savegames.

      Or it will just not sign you in and just say “Could not sign you in” (How helpful!)

      • This, so much this. The thing that really annoyed me about it was that Dawn of War 2 was the first real game I played on it. And half the time unless I did a runaround it just would not sign in, in the game itself. Since the multiplayer was run through it you can imagine how much this made me like it when a friend would suggest we play a game and suddenly I’m trying to figure out how to sign in without punching my computer screen.

  • GFWL is far worse than Clippy ever was. Clippy was a minor annoyance in MS office for a few years, GFWL is a pain in the ass which many games will be saddled with for all time. I don’t need an additional layer of sign in and patch management (a bad one by comparison to boot) on top of Steam.

  • GFWL tries to emulate steam and adds the added anti piracy measure like EA’s Origin its just that none of these have the ease of use that steam had. I would think Steam had these problems at launch and all the haters at the time but seeing as this is Microsoft they are portrayed as an evil company (like EA) I am not defending these programs cause I hate the way they are set up myself its just the way companies are trying to protect their games from pirates it’s just sad that the measures also effect their legitamite customers as well and lol don’t censor the first f bomb but you do it on the next one.

  • GFWL!!!!!!! It tells me my copy of DiRT 3 isn’t my copy of DiRT 3!!! Even though 6months ago I played it for about 20hrs, now all of a sudden when I tried to play again the cd key is linked to another account!!

  • My full 20 minutes on Bulletstorm has been trying to login to GFWL, it saying it cant connect to the server and downloading an update.

    There is a special circle of hell for GFWL and the people who thought it was a good idea to implement it.

  • GFWL- get the HELL off the decent games you seems to be slapped on,
    like some horrid tropical skin irritation.. (emphasis: IRRITATION!!)
    STEAM may be occasionally annoying, but it WORKS. I wish the above said skin irritation on all Microsoft execs who promoted this FRANKENDOUCHE of a client.

  • I also don’t understand why people hate GFWL as much as they do. To be honest I have actually had more issues with Steam than GFWL.

    I see allot of people complain that they hate GFWL but never explain why they hate it.

    While I really don’t like GFWL as a product delivery platform (they should either get rid of it or throw a ton of money at it to make it a viable competitor), I have never had a patching problem or an offline user problem with it. Steam on the other had has been an absolute pain in the ass to get running in an offline mode; you tell it to switch to offline, but then it wants to connect to the net to verify that your account is active before it goes offline. God forbid you try to run Steam directly into an offline mode where it throws up so many roadblocks to get into the game I just don’t even bother.

    Yes, its non-sensical that GFWL runs along side Steam in games that support it like Fallout:NV and I would prefer that games ran in either one or the other, not both, I have never had it being invasive of my gaming experience or cause me any issues running my computer.

    GFWL as a product delivery system sucks. GFWL as an authentication and patching tool works just as well as Steam does. It even consumes less resources than Steam while running in the background of a game and then closes when you exit the game.

    I definitely prefer Steam more than GFWL. As a product delivery system and fully featured platform it is far and away better than GFWL.
    But is GFWL as huge of a problem as most people seem to think, I don’t agree. In fact I feel it seems to suffer from the “its cool to bash on it because everyone else does” syndrome in most cases.

    • Did you read the replies at all? GFWL CORRUPTS YOUR SAVE FILE. I’ve bought one GFWL game bioshock 2. Day one had a forced update that failed 3 times and the updates went for an undefined period of time because of no size or progress notification. Eventually I had to go to their website and manually update. Then one day it decided that i didnt want my save file any more.

      My friends pirated it and played it before i did…. without issues. As someone who wanted to support the developers because Bioshock was one of my favourite games, it was a really big kick in the face. Its like they were TRYING to punish me for buying the game.

      • Just because you haven’t experienced the same amount of problems nearly everyone has (clearly identified above and nearly everywhere else on the internet contrary to your viewpoint) it doesn’t make their gripes invalid nor does it allow you to throw their legitimate concerns and annoyances into the “whining” corner.

        I’ve never had a problem with steam running in offline mode, does that allow me to say you’re just complaining because everyone else is?

  • “Being not a PC gamer or a Windows user, I only know there are 226,000 results for searching the phrases (both with quotation marks around them) “games for windows live” and “piece of shit”.”


  • GFWL isn’t that bad imo. I’ve found it to be a pain in the ass when you install a game (the “you must restart the game to perform this update” bullshit is unnecessary) but work alright afterwards

  • My favourite is when I’m watching the footy through foxtel on xbox and I fire up a GFWL game and it signs me out of foxtel because I’m ‘logged in at another location’.

  • If you reinstall windows or install your games on another computer your saves won’t work. They only work on the computer they were made on, which is by far the worst GFWL feature. God awful.

  • Games for winblows live is a horrible, counter-intuitive, piece of shit roadblock to playing a game
    I spent a weekend (A WHOLE F*CKING WEEKEND) just trying to create an account when I got bioshock 2
    I still haven’t finished bioshock 2 because of that piece of crap trolling my saves or simply not allowing me to play AT ALL because it can’t connect.
    Trollosoft needs a bullet to the soft squidgy parts of it’s corporate brain.

  • GFWL would be totally okay if it weren’t so intrusive.

    I have one GFWL game; Bioshock 2. And you can’t save without being logged in. This is immensely intrusive.

    Steam manages all the DRM stuff while being inobtrusive. It just sits there, doesn’t nag, doesn’t pester, doesn’t bitch, doesn’t restrict functionality.

    GFWL nags, pesters, bitches, and restricts functionality.

    Honestly, if GFWL didn’t intrude, I’d have no problem with it. I like being able to track Xbox and PC game achievements on the same profile. But the problem is the intrusiveness of the program.

    Valve is right about the importance of SERVICES in the gaming industry. SERVICES means doing things that are HELPFUL, CONVENIENT and POSITIVE for the player. Steam, in my experience, makes things easy for the player. GFWL needs to adopt the same approach.

    If GFWL did so, I’d have zero problem with it.

    • Ye, was a pain at first when I got Dirt 2. Signing in again on top of Steam. And for the life of me had no idea why it wasn’t saving my progress.

      And then the problem of getting saved games back. Looks like I’m going to have to start over again 🙁

  • Ya know what I have never had a problem with GFWL. I reckon they could improve on it however.

    It should have been an intergrated part of the OS connected to MSN messenger and other live services.
    Hell you cant even use MSN to talk to people on your xbox list.

    If it was correctly designed I reckon it would have been a winner. It matchmakes ok and its great to get a few Xbox chievos too.

    Tbh microsoft has prolly missed the boat now. It could have been a great platform to really show that Windows is the gaming platform.

  • I didnt know about GFWL till I bought Batman Arkham City and I had to sign up for it just so I could save. I dispise Xbox ideas and hate that microsoft are forcing you to use it in the pc medium.

  • Well my issues with GFWL came with GTAIV. I have no idea why there are online and offline profiles or why these should affect save games, but I had to start GTAIV over because I couldn’t play the game without updating it, and to update it GFWL wanted me to sign in first, but I couldn’t sign in until it updated first…

  • The ONLY time I use my old “Windows Live” (ie. Hotmail) account is when I am forced to log in to “Games for Windows Live”.. Whenever I see a game that requires this, I think very long and hard whether I really want to play this game..

    ..Battle.Net is not far behind.

  • GFWL is horrible:

    – it is the only service that charges you Money to change your Gaming Alias (About $10 worth or Microsoft Points).

    – It doesn’t seamlessly operate with the game, the log-in and the GFWL interface is extremely over-bearing on whatever game is running it, steam is MUCH better in this regard

    – It seems pretty superfluous. On all my games with GFWL, I already am launching them through steam, so I’m not sure why the developer chose to use GFWL in the first place, when Steam already had half of those “developer requirements” as options.

    – If it doesn’t work, for whatever reason, it is IMPOSSIBLE to trouble shoot. Mysterious error messages, no useful information online. My Dirt3 copy could NOT connect to online mode for about 4 months…then one day I bought F1 2011, and after installing that Dirt3 magically worked again. It wasn’t Codemasters problem, it was definitely GFWL not signing in correctly, and no amount of mucking with the firewall, GFWL settings or anything else would fix it

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