Dum_Gen

TLD is removed from GeForce Now

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Nicely done by Nvidia, they just cornered indies where they wanted to (not a legal mistake, come on !, either they are morons, which I don't believe, or this is a well thoughted strategy)

Now indies are stuck between Steam and the consumers, Nvidia is the good guy of course.

I got a youtube recommendation this morning with the title "GeForce is now pro-consumer so devs are trying to bury it". And there goes the comments about how nasty devs are.

Please add 2 + 2 and look at who are the actors and who is trying to (ge)Force the other side.

Don't be turkeys, don't vote for christmas.

 

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19 minutes ago, Eldeon said:

1. Why do you think it is a platform and not a service? Nvidia is not selling any games, they just rent hardware for gaming on cloud.

2. Why would Nvidia need legal rights from developers? Nvidia is not in business with developers. Nvidia have contract with users that allows users to play games on Nvidia hardware and the users have contract with a developer to use their game (intellectual property - IP). Users are the one who use the IP (they paid for this right), not Nvidia. If the developers wants their game out of GeforceNow, they should ask me (as user) and I would tell them, that they sold me the right to play the game whenever and wherever I want. If developers want their game be tied to a specific device, they should have changed the Steam agreement before they sold the game to me.

Not getting into any more discussions, but since 1. hasn't been answered yet (everything else really has):

Geforce Now doesn't offer you access to a full remote desktop on a Virtual Machine. It doesn't even offer you to just run any game or even any Steam game. It offers you to run a predfined set of games on Virtual Machines tailored to these games. As such you aren't renting hardware to use as just that - hardware - because if that was the case you could run anything on it - Word, Minesweeper, Seti@HOME, whatever - but you can't. You are renting to run an application, which we IT people call Software-as-a-service. So the service is the software you are running, not the hardware you are running it on. Even the Windows system shell is replaced with a specific loader, and each instance of your VM will only allow you to run exactly the game you started it for. 

Hence: Geforce Now is a platform that uses Virtual Machines to run games, not a service that offers you a Virtual Machine to run your games. 

Also, while you have to "install" games yourself (which is clearly a legal move), the package for the game isn't "downloaded" from steam, but from a transparent proxy inside the datacenter's local network. So the games, meaning all its binaries, media and miscellenous data files are distributed from a within Nvidias network, which means that Nvidia is acting as a distributor for these games despite having no legal right to do so.

And Nvidia knows they are in the wrong, because if they didn't, they wouldn't just budge to some small studio wanting to remove their game. They know they require a legal agreement from the rights owners, and they simply hoped that people wouldn't care and/or cave under the pressure of players buying into their marketing spinning this bass ackwards. The sad part is that with the help of loyal paying customers such as you angry people their gamble will, when all is said and done, work.

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I am not saying who I agree or disagree with, I would need to use and understand the service to make a call for myself. However I am happy any time people start to dislike nvidia because they've been pissing in our faces for years and people seem to still like them. I can't understand it.

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It's a very complicated issue of intellectual property.  I believe in empowering consumers, but it's also important the creators are empowered.  

The perception of the actors involved is always a bit interesting.  In many cases Hinterland is perceived as the big bad and Nvidia not so much, and I think some if it is that companies like Nvidia are sort of tacitly accepted as part of the landscape, where the actions of Hinterland or a developer are relativized against the consumer or individual.  If they did the same with Nvidia, the gap would be much larger.  Of course, it's always more subjective than many make it to be despite what logic they use. Most people are just conditioned and appetitive and the logic follows.  Of course,  this isn't gamers though.  Most of them are exceedingly calm, rational and prepared to listen to multilayered discussions.

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Posted (edited)

So how did people here feel about being able to stream the game by the streaming platform Shadow? The way how I understand that one is it's a complete Windows desktop that you're renting out for like $25 a month I think.

but yes Nvidia should have asked permission to host of the game of files on there node server thingie or whatever they want to call it. That is how Nvidia messed up. 

Edited by PyroYuy
Spelling errors

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Posted (edited)

@PyroYuyShadow is a much more interesting problem, actually.

Since there you can make the argument that you really just run it on a remote VM, and there is no inbetween hosting, at least not deliberately. (Sure, the shadow guys could host a proxy in their network to reduce bandwidth load, but transparent proxies are their own digital rights and data protection dumpsterfire, so I personally as a provider would give them a pretty wide berth.) Sure, shadow could technically prevent you from running The Long Dark specifically, but I have a hard time concocting a sound reasoning for why they should be inclined to do that.

On the other hand one of the problems for the Game Developers persist: you transcend platform boundaries with it, since you can run the streaming app on a Smart TV, a phone, a tablet, in short: any Android device with a screen. This way you get games not meant for a certain device on that certain device, even if it is rendered elsewhere.

And this is one of the challenges of cloud computing I alluded to:

Technically a game developer could present you with an EULA that forbids you to run their software on a remote virtual machine. But then what constitutes as a remote virtual machine? Does that apply to my Steam server at home I that run to use to stream games to my TV with Steam Link, but that also has a concurrent Fileserver instance? Does that VM need to be hosted in a datacenter? What is a datacenter? Does that also apply to non-virtualized servers that are in a datacenter? What is a server, and what is a PC? Is it even legal to force such limitations in an End User License Agreement? How far can a Game go to enfroce such a policy? Who is legally liable if such a policy is violated? The player? The service provider? Both?

All these are questions that have no satisfactory answer. But there is genuine interest for game developers to be financially able to port a game to a different platform. Not only for monetary reasons - but because if you ever tried to play Civ 5 on your smartphone via Steam Link then you know that just because it technically works it isn't automatically working well, and providing a good user experience on all devices a game is supposed to run on is in the developers best interest - and be it just from a marketing perspective.

What I can imagine what this all will lead to is that developers or more precisely publishers will offer you streaming instances of their games themselves rather than let you download their IP. This way they retain control over their IP, and since they cannot control the "interaction surface" anymore anyways, they might as well switch over to subscription models altogether. Actually .... if someone is willing to invest a few million dollars in a company that is offering game publishers to host their games under their conditions .... I think this business model could fly. Basically GFN, but as a service for game publishers, so they don't need their own infrastructure to host their games. At least in the long run this could work. Currently offering you games as a streaming service exclusively is not feasible with how many key markets are not sufficiently equipped with high bandwidth internet connections. But 5G might play a big role in changing that.

Edit: To clarify: What I think the future really looks like is that we don't buy games to install on a Streaming Service (GFN) or buy them on a Streaming Service for many publishers (Stadia) but that publishers themselves will offer you to stream their games embedded in a per-game subscription model, but not offer you to download them anymore. This would also heavily shift how personal computing (including consoles) develops.

Edit 2: because think about it: What is stopping Adobe from saying that the next version of Photoshop is hosted in the Cloud? Or After Effects? What is stopping Microsoft from telling you, that Word now runs exclusively in the cloud? For that matter: what's stopping them from running Windows from a remote machine altogether? Right, bandwidth is. But that problem will eventually solve "itself". Technically you could even imagine running a thin-client/terminal that is composing several remote "windows" onto a single screen, with the overall Operating System running on one service, a game from another, and Photoshop from yet another. Even more funny that Linux already has the capability to do such thing (at least technically, not saying X would be the right tool for this kind of job)

Edited by jeffpeng
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I think that the absence of an agreement between Nvidia and Hinterland puts Hinterland in the position of having the defend their property rights while they consider what to do. 

If GFN only allowed subscribers to upload their copy of TLD to run on GFN's virtual machine, Hinterland might have let that slide so long as GFN signed an agreement to abide by that nicety.  Similarly if GFN always verified that subscribers did own a copy of TLD then a signed agreement with Hinterland that they would always abide by doing that verification would have worked too.  Also if GFN makes changes to its virtual machine that breaks the game then GFN might have to deal with what broke the game not necessarily Hinterland.

Without an agreement between Nvidia and Hinterland to establish the ground rules and understandings between them,  Hinterland has to take steps to protect their property.  It is probably kind of easy to forfeit one's legal rights if one does not actively do so and even if it could be clawed back that may well be a long and difficult legal process. 

It may seem like it should be easy, but I worked on a memorandum of agreement, a simple amendment (to change who the landowner party to the agreement was) to a prior agreement that got tied the heck up in complications when the lawyers got involved.   😅

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1 hour ago, jeffpeng said:

@PyroYuyShadow is a much more interesting problem, actually.

Since there you can make the argument that you really just run it on a remote VM, and there is no inbetween hosting, at least not deliberately. (Sure, the shadow guys could host a proxy in their network to reduce bandwidth load, but transparent proxies are their own digital rights and data protection dumpsterfire, so I personally as a provider would give them a pretty wide berth.) Sure, shadow could technically prevent you from running The Long Dark specifically, but I have a hard time concocting a sound reasoning for why they should be inclined to do that.

On the other hand one of the problems for the Game Developers persist: you transcend platform boundaries with it, since you can run the streaming app on a Smart TV, a phone, a tablet, in short: any Android device with a screen. This way you get games not meant for a certain device on that certain device, even if it is rendered elsewhere.

And this is one of the challenges of cloud computing I alluded to:

Technically a game developer could present you with an EULA that forbids you to run their software on a remote virtual machine. But then what constitutes as a remote virtual machine? Does that apply to my Steam server at home I that run to use to stream games to my TV with Steam Link, but that also has a concurrent Fileserver instance? Does that VM need to be hosted in a datacenter? What is a datacenter? Does that also apply to non-virtualized servers that are in a datacenter? What is a server, and what is a PC? Is it even legal to force such limitations in an End User License Agreement? How far can a Game go to enfroce such a policy? Who is legally liable if such a policy is violated? The player? The service provider? Both?

All these are questions that have no satisfactory answer. But there is genuine interest for game developers to be financially able to port a game to a different platform. Not only for monetary reasons - but because if you ever tried to play Civ 5 on your smartphone via Steam Link then you know that just because it technically works it isn't automatically working well, and providing a good user experience on all devices a game is supposed to run on is in the developers best interest - and be it just from a marketing perspective.

What I can imagine what this all will lead to is that developers or more precisely publishers will offer you streaming instances of their games themselves rather than let you download their IP. This way they retain control over their IP, and since they cannot control the "interaction surface" anymore anyways, they might as well switch over to subscription models altogether. Actually .... if someone is willing to invest a few million dollars in a company that is offering game publishers to host their games under their conditions .... I think this business model could fly. Basically GFN, but as a service for game publishers, so they don't need their own infrastructure to host their games. At least in the long run this could work. Currently offering you games as a streaming service exclusively is not feasible with how many key markets are not sufficiently equipped with high bandwidth internet connections. But 5G might play a big role in changing that.

Edit: To clarify: What I think the future really looks like is that we don't buy games to install on a Streaming Service (GFN) or buy them on a Streaming Service for many publishers (Stadia) but that publishers themselves will offer you to stream their games embedded in a per-game subscription model, but not offer you to download them anymore. This would also heavily shift how personal computing (including consoles) develops.

Edit 2: because think about it: What is stopping Adobe from saying that the next version of Photoshop is hosted in the Cloud? Or After Effects? What is stopping Microsoft from telling you, that Word now runs exclusively in the cloud? For that matter: what's stopping them from running Windows from a remote machine altogether? Right, bandwidth is. But that problem will eventually solve "itself". Technically you could even imagine running a thin-client/terminal that is composing several remote "windows" onto a single screen, with the overall Operating System running on one service, a game from another, and Photoshop from yet another. Even more funny that Linux already has the capability to do such thing (at least technically, not saying X would be the right tool for this kind of job)

Awesome. This post and your preceding one, @jeffpeng, were the technical explanations I was looking for to complete my understanding of the whole issue. Thanks a lot.

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Posted (edited)
On 3/6/2020 at 12:37 AM, jeffpeng said:

Edit: To clarify: What I think the future really looks like is that we don't buy games to install on a Streaming Service (GFN) or buy them on a Streaming Service for many publishers (Stadia) but that publishers themselves will offer you to stream their games embedded in a per-game subscription model, but not offer you to download them anymore. This would also heavily shift how personal computing (including consoles) develops.

Edit 2: because think about it: What is stopping Adobe from saying that the next version of Photoshop is hosted in the Cloud? Or After Effects? What is stopping Microsoft from telling you, that Word now runs exclusively in the cloud? For that matter: what's stopping them from running Windows from a remote machine altogether? Right, bandwidth is. But that problem will eventually solve "itself". Technically you could even imagine running a thin-client/terminal that is composing several remote "windows" onto a single screen, with the overall Operating System running on one service, a game from another, and Photoshop from yet another. Even more funny that Linux already has the capability to do such thing (at least technically, not saying X would be the right tool for this kind of job)

I don't think that's a feasible future. Presently, the vast majority of complex video games are -- I believe -- stored, rendered, and processed by our PCs. Most single-player games do not need an online connection to run (though some do. Looking at you, Ubisoft), and what little internet traffic a game generates deals with making sure the games are up to date to the most current version, or the back-and-forth of UDP packets that allow our PCs to process not only what we're doing, but what everyone else in the deathmatch is doing, too. Streaming a game in the manner you're describing puts all that rendering and processing data through the network interface controller before it hits the CPU and GPU, (because we have to download it in real-time) as opposed to the current method, where CPU and GPU getting their data right from the system's hard drive with a latency of nil. Playing a video game in the manner you're suggesting would be like streaming a video on YouTube or Netflix, only now you can interact with it. Gamer's internet usage would skyrocket, as would the publisher's as they attempt to serve all their customers simultaneously. I have no idea just how much data my CPU and GPU process every second while I'm playing TLD off my hard drive, but I know with certainty that it's a lot higher than what my internet connection is capable of.

 

As for what's stopping Adobe or Microsoft, I don't use photoshop of after-effects so I can't comment on those, but Word -- or any Office app, for that matter -- is by no means a complicated program like a video game is. The demands Microsoft Word puts on a PC  -- compared to The Long Dark -- is insignificant, so running it over the cloud may indeed happen one day.

Edited by GothSkunk

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Posted (edited)
On 3/5/2020 at 12:29 PM, jeffpeng said:

... You are renting to run an application, which we IT people call Software-as-a-service. So the service is the software you are running, not the hardware you are running it on. ...

Hence: Geforce Now is a platform that uses Virtual Machines to run games, not a service that offers you a Virtual Machine to run your games.

It feels like you are contradicting yourself there.

 

On 3/5/2020 at 12:29 PM, jeffpeng said:

And Nvidia knows they are in the wrong, because if they didn't, they wouldn't just budge to some small studio wanting to remove their game.

I don't think it's that easy.
If Nvidia were so clearly in the wrong, publishers would simply sue them. Even if you think Hinterland could not afford to do so, money shouldn't be so tight for others.

 

Edit:

And I'm still not sure what Hinterland needs to defend here.

NVidia stealing their IP?
Can't image that.

Selling less licenses?
Well no one else is selling them, so how would that happen?

Losing the chance to make a port to a specific mobile platform?
We all know the announcements for a completed story mode from years ago. I think the people would be more interested in that than buying a port before the game is finally complete.

Edited by Spottdrossel
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Posted (edited)

I personally don't see where there is any argument...  Nvidia is in the wrong (other folks like Activision-Blizzard and Bethesda pulled their games even earlier), and Hinterland is well within their rights.

:coffee::fire:
Folks may not like it (but that's a personal problem)... I don't think that's any reason to spit venom at folks are exercising their rights as creators.

Also since it's been brought up... if it's just a service supporting virtual machines to "run games"  ...then why would the actual titles need to be "on" their service?  (the answer is, they wouldn't need to be - so I don't think it's quite what some folks are trying to make it sound like)  :D

 

Edited by ManicManiac
Bottom line... I think Nvidia is being exploitative. I say support Hinterland.
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Guest kristaok

Just because other companies pulled their games doesn't make nvidia the bad guy, it just shows that there's lots of greedy companies out there. 

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Posted (edited)
28 minutes ago, kristaok said:

it just shows that there's lots of greedy companies out there

I think that was a very presumptuous thing to say. ¬¬
Just because creators pull their games from services that didn't even bother to ask permission to host it, doesn't mean their being greedy... :D


:coffee::fire:
I think Nvidia is being exploitative... I don't think they should be allowed to get away with it.
I say: Support Hinterland.

Edited by ManicManiac

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Guest kristaok

@Trevmizer

I saw that. I never advocate for banning or censoring unless the comments are outright crude. I admit though I didn't get to see which comments were removed so I don't know how bad it got. 

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Posted (edited)

@Trevmizer :D

I think you're assuming quite a bit, and then trying to state it as fact.
I don't think you have any insider knowledge as to Hinterland's actions, motivations, or intentions. :D

I mean isn't also possible that Steam is moderating their own forums for their own reasons?  Is it possible that repeated topics are getting spammed in the forum?  Is there even any way for us to know any of it for sure?  ...or are folks just engaging in speculation now?


:coffee::fire:

Steam did make this announcement back in September of 2018:
"We want to give developers an update on what we’ve been working on related to community moderation and let you know about an upcoming addition to how we support your game communities on Steam. The short version is that starting on Tuesday, Sept 25th, our moderation team will start reviewing reported discussion posts in all game hubs on Steam"

Edited by ManicManiac

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Guest kristaok
 

@ManicManiac I typically do support Hinterland, but in this instance I can't support their decision. Now that doesn't mean I don't enjoy their game, and it doesn't mean I hate them. I don't hate Hinterland at all, but in my opinion they made a bad decision that I can't back. I also can't back the way they treat their player base when they reply to comments rudely. That's not professional at all. 

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Guest kristaok

@ManicManiac Forgot to add; I do recall when I checked the Steam Forums that the Team did admit they have removed comments and banned people over this, so @Trevmizer is correct that it wasn't the Steam mods, it was Hinterland. 

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Posted (edited)

@kristaok

I don't think I was being rude to anyone.

However, when folks make assumptions and then try to state it as fact, I will point it out.  I was also offering a counter point that many folks seemed to be overlooking.

:coffee::fire:

Edited by ManicManiac

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Guest kristaok

@ManicManiac I don't think I said you were rude did I? I just said Hinterland has replied to people rudely in times past, and that's not professional. 

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@kristaok

Interesting, when I checked I didn't come across such a thing... I'll look again.  :)

:coffee::fire::coffee:
Thank you for the heads up.  I try not to assume anything either way since I know I don't have all the facts either... I'm discouraging the idea of jumping to conclusions one way or the other.

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Posted (edited)
21 minutes ago, kristaok said:

I don't think I said you were rude did I?

Oh, my mistake...
I think I misread your reply.  I see you were referring to Hinterland...

:coffee::fire::coffee:
I really didn't mean to misinterpret.

Although, I haven't come across any of Hinterland's replies that come off (to me) as rude either...

Edited by ManicManiac

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Comment removed. We have a reasonable discussion here. Starting a new account just to launch ad hominem attacks is not allowed either here or on our Steam forums. 
 

People have been removed from the Steam forums for threats, homophobia, spamming and focusing on insulting others rather than the discussion, as per our standard Guidelines. 

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Guest kristaok

@ManicManiac Its okay. :) No hard feelings. 

I just get too passionate about things sometimes because I've seen games I love become affected by poor company decisions. I don't want that to happen here at all. 

Two of my favorite game franchises are in a rocky patch due to their poor decisions. I don't wanna see TLD suffer that's all. 

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5 hours ago, Spottdrossel said:

It feels like you are contradicting yourself there.

How you feel is entirely up to you. 😃

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