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Jester101

Palm & Windows CE market?

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Hello, does anyone have some numbers or know about the Palm & Windows CE games market? Is it worth to make games for it? If you want to make a Palm & Windows CE game for my company contact me please (royalties + small advance possible). Take care, Jester

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What I expected. Nobody knows about the Windows CE market. So lets change the question:

Why have you never attempted to break into this market? Do you believe it doesn''t pay? Too much work?

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It''s probably more like "let''s wait and see if anyone makes money on this before we jump in."

Also, everyone *everyone* I know has some sort of Palm OS device, and I''ve never even seen a Windows CE machine except for in Circuit City.

It''s probably too bad too, my guess is DirectX games are pretty easy to port to a CE device.

-M

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Personally, WindowsCE and the Linux-X-Server driven PDA''s annoy me. PocketCPUs, etc. Why? Interface.

Nothing more annoying than trying to use Windows on a tiny screen with a stylus.

Palm is successful because it''s a market leader and because it''s OS and applications are designed around it''s size and input limitation.

I''ve played color Breakout on my palm and some other simple games, so it''s not hard. I think the real point I''m trying to make is that it''s unlikely you''ll see mass acceptance of Quake on the Palm. =) The input and the output just don''t provide the same experience.

I think there''s a market for Palm or PocketPC games, but I suspect they''re for simple, short, non-involved games. (No one I know spends hours in front of their palm!). So, my question is do you really need DirectX or OpenGL to create PocketPc or Palm games? You can probably create games without that firepower. As for market potential, hard to say. I think most people aren''t upto paying much for Palm software, but I''ve seen some gamepaks for the Palm, so there''s definitely a market.

R>

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My own opinion is that the handheld devices will soon become powerful enough to run a "normal" version of Windows. And when that happens, voila, my software and games will magically be available to those devices.

I expect this to happen in 2-3 years. So it''s hard to muster a lot of enthusiasm to bother.

DavidRM
Samu Games

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Guest Anonymous Poster
quote:
Original post by Torn Space
Also, everyone *everyone* I know has some sort of Palm OS device, and I''ve never even seen a Windows CE machine except for in Circuit City.



Be carefull generalizing things like this. While it might be true that everyone you have has a palm OS device, in other areas this is much different. I know a lot of people that have a PDA of some sort, and they all have Windows CE based machines (okay, except for one person who has one with it''s own OS, that was based on windows ce though)

I know that palm is probably a little more popular at the moment. It was the last time I check at least.

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>My own opinion is that the handheld devices will soon become
>powerful enough to run a "normal" version of Windows. And when
>that happens, voila, my software and games will magically be
>available to those devices.

Ah yes, one day... one day...

Take the TabletPC for instance.

It's a little bigger than a PDA, but they'll be shrinking fast.




Edited by - Pyabo on December 11, 2001 7:03:09 PM

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Uhh, unless I''m mistaken, PocketPCs have enough power to run Windows 9X already. They just don''t have the hard drive space. I mean, someone I know has a PocketPC with a 233MHz chip and 64MB RAM. That''s enough to run Windows, methinks. However, the onboard data storage space is really tiny, like maybe 100MB at most. If they up that (perhaps using the same hard drives that are in MP3 players nowadays?) then it''d be a viable gaming platform.

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Interesting thread. Anonymouse (? - not really anonymous?) Poster has it right. Has anyone seen the new Apple iPod MP3 player? Size of a deck of cards with a 5GB hard drive. Doesn''t IBM now have a 1GB microdrive that is the size of a Compact Flash Type II card? I think the answer is yes (http://www.storage.ibm.com/hdd/micro/). The problem seems to be power, battery life. The same reason you don''t see GeForce 3 Ti 500 chips on ultra thin laptops. Yet.

On a related, but unrelated, has anyone year played with programming a Game Boy Advance? Lik-sang (www.lik-sang.com) has a Flash memory cartridge and there are free compilers, samples, and tools out there at a good many sites (www.gbadev.org). Could be great fun.

I''ll also just mention again here that NDL (www.ndl.com) and FatHammer (www.fathammer.com) have working 3D engine prototypes for powerful Pocket PC''s (high end Compaq iPaq for example). I''ve seen the NDL engine running, with a 2000 triangle textured, skinned character model dancing to some music at 10-15 frames per second. The dance floor was basically 1 rectangle (2 triangles), but had an animated texture. All running on a machine with no hardware floating point unit. Very cool.

Pocket games obviously require a different human computer interface and presentation than PC and console games. This is where there are opportunities to be innovative an creative.

Graham Rhodes
Senior Scientist
Applied Research Associates, Inc.

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We may see a Transmeta processor at 500+ MHz, Windows XP, and a 1 GB IBM Microdrive in the Palm PCs of the future...

Palm OS is sleek and you can run Joust on a Visor Prizm. I play several very enjoyable games on my Palm IIIx. I know several people you love the iPaq. Both Palm and CE have a good size user base.

Want to make a handheld game I say go for it. I think that is what the people who made Diakatana are doing now.



Glen Martin
Dynamic Adventures Inc.
Zenfar

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Guest Anonymous Poster
Right now, I think that game development for a handheld is just for a hobby, but the technology is getting more powerful, whether your talking about a Microsoft PocketPC handheld such as the Compaq iPaq or a Palm OS handheld such as the Sony Clie. On gamedev, there is a programmer (I believe his name is Pierre) who has a developed a PocketPC version of OpenGL he calls PocketGL. You might want to check that out. It''s pretty cool.

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Hi Jester,
I think the reson you did not get much of a reply is that the PocketPC developers have their own active message boards so they don''t come here to discuss things. I use gamedev regularly for info but today I am posting for the first time.

There are many developers (companies & shareware) bringing out titles and with the PocketPC now running fast enough to do reasonable 3D ( quake has been ported as have various other PC games ) the results are pretty good.

PocketPC is catching Palm up very quickly in units sold & the number of devices is growing fast. The capabilities are now in advance of Palm by a very long way ( I own both Palm & CE devices & have compilers for both )

Now that all manufacturers are using one chip ( Strongarm as in the iPaq ) people are starting to look at assembler to get speed.

See www.pocketmatrix.com for an example of a site with active dev discussion.

Regards

Ian

ps: I just do shareware for fun & have had many hundreds of registrations this year

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Just read the orther replies. Personally I don''t want a ''real'' OS to appear instead of CE on PocketPCs. Currently the PocketPC has instant on with apps still there, automatic wake up for reminders, almost no crashing ever etc so Windows CE is miles ahead of big windows in many ways.

Re the size/complexity of games most are shooters & pretty short play but my own PocketPC game Space Treker is played for hours at a time by some people and there are other complex titles out there. So long as the program is designed for the interface then it works fine.

btw: I find it really annoying when I touch my laptop screen & nothing happens

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"Hundreds" of registrations!? That''s pretty good for a PC game, let alone a PocketPC game. Is that for Space Treker?

One thing I have to take issue with though, is your statement about WinCE being "miles ahead" of other Windows OSes... the original WinCE core was actually stripped from the Windows NT source tree! It may have gained some reliability be stripping out nearly all of the real features, but it''s certainly not ahead of the game as far as Windows is concerned. Instant-on is certainly nice though.

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The CE and Palm markets have collapsed. In September/October it was still one of the hottest things and sales topped 5000 units a month of simple shareware collections in a store like CompUSA, but in November sales for these 2 formats hit a wall.

I strongly suggest anyone considering to get into developing for either Palm or CE not to give up his/her day job...

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this may seem like a silly question, but do you see Palm/CE as a competitor to nintendo''s gameboys anytime in the future? reading through the replies it seems like these "handheld PCs" have more power than the gameboy.

just curious.

- jeremiah
http://fakemind.com

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Wow, Mr. Rhodes. This is a first, my point not being contested. What an...odd...thing. Anyway, the new Apple iPod''s hard drive will soon be in PDAs, supposedly. 5GB of space in a hand-sized device? Sign me up.


(On another note, Civ III has stolen my life. Help.)

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quote:
Original post by Anonymouse Poster
Wow, Mr. Rhodes. This is a first, my point not being contested. What an...odd...thing. Anyway, the new Apple iPod''s hard drive will soon be in PDAs, supposedly. 5GB of space in a hand-sized device? Sign me up.


Call me Graham. Age is irrelevant to me here, and I don''t feel like I''m a Mr. anyway, .

I really want one of these high-end Compaq iPaq''s, but I may wait another generation (12 months) to see if the hard drives start making an appearance.

quote:
Original post by Anonymouse Poster (On another note, Civ III has stolen my life. Help.)


Sorry, can''t help here. A buddy of mine is in the same situation. I think he''s up to year 2150 or something like that.

Graham Rhodes
Senior Scientist
Applied Research Associates, Inc.

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quote:
Original post by Anonymous Poster
2150, the game ends at 2050 though ?


Yeah, I''m not exactly sure about that. Matt was surprised too that he could go beyond 2050. Perhaps there''s a bug? Then again, perhaps I just remember wrong.

Graham Rhodes
Senior Scientist
Applied Research Associates, Inc.

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In reply to Pyabo''s question, yes it''s Space Treker. The main reason that the registrations are in the high hundreds ( and this is only my guess ) is that the game has a the feel of some old space games and a retro quality which appeals to an age group which happens to contain lots of people who buy CE devices.

I did not mean that CE was more functional than big Windows, just that it actually does everything well and for most purposes it''s more user friendly & certainly more robust.

Regarding the level of sales in November or any other month I''ve given up trying to figure the internet. My sales were poor in November ( only 20 ) yet in October & December they are fine. Some days there are no registrations & other days 5 come together. Overall the PocketPC market is growing & the industry is on the up & up. Last Christmas there were lots of Palms & a couple of PocketPCs on sale here & now the average store catalogue has 3 pages of PocketPCs plus a few Palms.

Ian

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Hey Sundial,
Can you tell us a little bit about what you''ve done in the way of marketing, and how you are bringing in sales? Are you using your own website, or going through a 3rd party? If you''re doing online registration, who are you going with?

I''m intrigued by your game since it seems to be very popular in what I considered a very small market. Any more info you can give us is greatly appreciated!

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OFF TOPIC: Civ III calculates your final score in year 2050 (it was 2010 in Civ II), if you haven''t "won" by then. However, it gives you the option to keep playing for fun, with no scoring, for as long as you want.

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quote:
Original post by Peeper
OFF TOPIC: Civ III calculates your final score in year 2050 (it was 2010 in Civ II), if you haven''t "won" by then. However, it gives you the option to keep playing for fun, with no scoring, for as long as you want.


Coolio. So that''s what happened!

(end off topic.)

Graham Rhodes
Senior Scientist
Applied Research Associates, Inc.

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