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The expensive games usually get all the attention at GameSpot, but we wanted to take a look at the Windows Vista games that will be responsible for countless hours of wasted productivity through the end of the decade. Windows Vista's updated DirectX 10 API promises to give us better-looking and better-playing games by allowing game developers to get more performance out of the PC system, but Vista isn't only going to help improve those $50 games. Microsoft will update Windows's collection of casual games, which includes old standbys such as Minesweeper, FreeCell, and Solitaire, and Vista will also introduce completely new games including Chess Titans, Mahjong Titans, and Purble Place, which are designed to appeal to a large, global audience.
Mouse over each image to see comparison shots. The updated Windows Vista games have XP comparison shots, and the new Vista games have alternate shots.
The Windows team decided that it was time to overhaul its game collection by updating the user interface and unifying the design style to make the games worthy of the new AeroGlass desktop theme. Solitaire offers the same core gameplay mechanics that we're accustomed to in the current version, but it also has new graphics and supports Windows Vista's new Games Explorer display window, which features game box shots and vital stats such as publisher, developer, and ESRB rating.
FreeCell also has a new look, but the game still retains the core gameplay first introduced to players in Windows 95. One major change in the Vista version is a new "undo" command that lets you take back moves, which you can abuse to go all the way back to the start of the game if you want. The undo function appears in several of the other card-based games, as well as Mahjong Titans and Chess Titans.
Vista breaks out two 3D card decks for Spider Solitaire. Select your difficulty level and take advantage of the new "hint" option if you get stuck. Many of the games feature a hint option that will highlight open moves for you to take in case you get stuck. Using hints in Spider Solitaire will make sure you've exhausted all of your options before dealing out another layer.
Discuss: What's your favorite built-in Windows game? What games are you looking forward to the most in Vista? What's your best Minesweeper time at intermediate?
A Look at Windows Vista Installed Games
We take a look at the Windows Vista games that will be responsible for countless hours of wasted productivity through the end of the decade.