"I genuinely worry about the future of Microsoft," says Epic Games founder
Tim Sweeney not too pleased with the "closed" nature of Windows 8, also says that virtual reality will "completely change the world."
DayZ creator Dean Hall is not the only developer who is not terribly pleased with Microsoft and Windows 8. Speaking with Polygon, Epic Games founder Tim Sweeney said he's concerned about the "closed" nature of Microsoft's latest operating system.
"I genuinely worry about the future of Microsoft," Sweeney said. "They've locked down this Windows 8. They say future app developers should focus there, but you can only ship that with Microsoft's permission and Microsoft's approval through Microsoft's store. And that sucks compared to the open nature of the PC platform before…"
On the other hand, Sweeney praised Valve's line of Steam Machines, describing the product line as the "most open high-end gaming platform ever."
But Sweeney isn't ready to write Microsoft off entirely in the PC gaming space. He said he's hopeful, due in part to the recent senior management shakeup, that Microsoft will become more "open" as it relates to developing for the Windows platform. If they don't, Linux and Steam OS are a good backup plan, he said.
"I sense kind of a renaissance at MS in the last six months," Sweeney said. "Talking to the DirectX team for example, they're making some brilliant decisions on DirectX 12 to make it more efficient and more open than ever before. You just generally sense a momentum to be more open with the community and more broad with their Windows strategy. I'm hoping that takes root."
Also in Polygon's interview, Sweeney said the virtual reality market is going to explode in popularity and prominence over time. "We're doing a huge amount of research in VR, working with Oculus kits," he said. "We see this as a technology that will influence every game and every platform."
Sweeney went as far to say that virtual reality technology, like the Facebook-owned Oculus Rift or Sony's Project Morpheus, are going to revolutionize the world in a more meaningful way than smartphones did.
"It's technology that I think will completely change the world," Sweeney said. "I think It's going to be a bigger phenomenon than smartphones. You have to put it in perspective and realize we're in maybe the [first-generation] iPhone stage right now where you have this really cool device, but it has some real flaws that prevents it from being a pervasive device for everyone. There might be an audience for 10 million users of the current tech, but as it improves with each generation, the audience is going to keep growing until eventually you're going to reach a critical point where you can put on one of these devices and have an experience that is effectively indistinguishable from reality."