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ShakeWell
06-04-2007, 12:37 PM
So, I tried some of the new free GameTap last night. It skews curiously more toward gamers than casuals, with a dearth of old school Neo-Geo games, although not all of them are good. The GameTap interface is kind of a pain in the ass sometimes, I had problems with getting my PS2 controller working with it (I use a USB adapter), but in the end all was good. My only big complaint is that the start button is also the "insert coin" button and the button that takes you back to GameTap, all depending on the length of the button press. Ultimately, I'd think those three things should be allowed to be assigned to separate buttons. Anyways, considering it's free to play, and the free games (about thirty at a time it seems) will rotate every week, it's worth checking out.

poetfox
06-04-2007, 12:39 PM
I was annoyed by the lack of a "show me the free games" button in the interface. Maybe I missed it. But they have a lot of games on there, I'm not about to scroll through each one to find the ones I can play, and I really shouldn't have to alt-tab to a browser window with the list of currently free things...

R^2
06-04-2007, 12:59 PM
The website's a lot better than it used to be, but it's still not as good as it could be.

On the front page, there's a front-and-center window (one of about fifty, ugh) titled "Free Play". On the top-right corner of that window is a button that says "All". And that's how you get to the list of whatever games are available for free.

Vahn16
06-04-2007, 01:10 PM
I signed up for the free version. If they make us pay to play Panzer Dragoon Saga (which I really hope they'll have eventually), I'll be angry...for about 2 seconds. Then, I'll sign up for a paid membership.

The website is pretty navigable. My biggest complaint is the way they have premium membership offers plastered everywhere. "Want to play this game? Too bad, you have to pay us. Oh, but hey, check out our featured game. You can play it...oh wait, you have to pay for that, too." It seems like the free version is there to show you how much better the paid version is.

estragon
06-04-2007, 01:22 PM
It seems like the free version is there to show you how much better the paid version is.

Why, yes, this does seem to be a reasonable assumption.

Jakanden
06-04-2007, 01:23 PM
I signed up for the free version. If they make us pay to play Panzer Dragoon Saga (which I really hope they'll have eventually), I'll be angry...for about 2 seconds. Then, I'll sign up for a paid membership.

The website is pretty navigable. My biggest complaint is the way they have premium membership offers plastered everywhere. "Want to play this game? Too bad, you have to pay us. Oh, but hey, check out our featured game. You can play it...oh wait, you have to pay for that, too." It seems like the free version is there to show you how much better the paid version is.

The only problem with running Saturn games through gametap is that the system requirements are pretty high. I have 2GB Ram and an Athlon 64bit 3200 and it fails the system requirement check. I can sort of still play, but not all that well as Panzer Dragoon is very jerky.

Excitemike
06-04-2007, 01:23 PM
I was fooling around with the light player last night and didn't have too many problems. I can't usually get games running on my laptop, and the regular Gametap player won't even install. But I was able to get on and play a few games and it worked pretty well. Neo Geo games were a bit too much for my poor system but anything from before, say, 1991 worked like a dream.

Hey! We can get together and play now.

Anyway, I signed up for Sam and Max and I fell in love with the service. It's the ultimate balm for my ADD-riddled brain. And when my new processor comes I am going to Panzer the hell out of those Dragoons.

Red Hedgehog
06-04-2007, 02:10 PM
I'm excited they announced they were working on a Mac client for GameTap. Of course, it will probably be Intel only so I suspect I'll still be out of luck until I get a new computer.

Torgo
06-04-2007, 02:12 PM
King of the Monsters 2 is listed as 'Coming Soon' in the free games rotation.

I think I might have to try it.

Jakanden
06-04-2007, 02:23 PM
Anyway, I signed up for Sam and Max and I fell in love with the service. It's the ultimate balm for my ADD-riddled brain. And when my new processor comes I am going to Panzer the hell out of those Dragoons.

That was the original reason I signed up as well. However, I am only on episode 4 right now.

djSyndrome
06-04-2007, 02:39 PM
I'm excited they announced they were working on a Mac client for GameTap. Of course, it will probably be Intel only so I suspect I'll still be out of luck until I get a new computer.

Why would it be Intel only? Universal Binaries, while big, are easy to produce.

Excitemike
06-04-2007, 02:47 PM
That was the original reason I signed up as well. However, I am only on episode 4 right now.
Heh, I still haven't finished episode 3.

Eusis
06-04-2007, 02:49 PM
Sam & Max was ultimately what made getting GameTap worthwhile for me. Unfortunately, I haven't used it for much else. Maybe I'll just go through the two worthwhile Tomb Raider games and desubscribe until I clear out my backlog some.

Mightyblue
06-04-2007, 02:53 PM
Why would it be Intel only? Universal Binaries, while big, are easy to produce.Hardware differences, not software. A mac on Intel hardware is still a mac OS wise. Suffice it to say that it's easier to release a client for something that uses relatively similar hardware than completely different.

Deadguy2322
06-04-2007, 02:54 PM
Intel only is easier to port from Windows. If their client runs close to the iron, using lots of machine code, a PPC port would be killer to program. Not to mention that Macs have been all Intel for over a year now.

Torgo
06-04-2007, 05:15 PM
So any tips on how to get GameTap to recognize any other part of my controller besides the d-pad?

(I am using a PS2 controller through a USB adapter.)

Excitemike
06-04-2007, 05:33 PM
So any tips on how to get GameTap to recognize any other part of my controller besides the d-pad?

(I am using a PS2 controller through a USB adapter.)

The PS2 controller always works for me. I have a 360 wireless controller that used to be touch and go until Ver 3.0 dropped. The PS2 pad was always my standby. Do you have the controller plugged in before Gametap starts? Have you tried reinstalling the drivers?

alexb
06-04-2007, 05:35 PM
So how does Game Tap work? Is it an emulator? Is it some fashion of streaming games temporarily to your machine? Both?

Torgo
06-04-2007, 05:36 PM
Well, some of the buttons are mapped. Circle is mapped to something or other because at the very least I can play Joust. Triangle either gives me a credit or pauses the game, depending on how long I press it.

Excitemike
06-04-2007, 05:53 PM
So how does Game Tap work? Is it an emulator? Is it some fashion of streaming games temporarily to your machine? Both?
It's an emulator inside of a client. The games are downloaded to your hardrive. They give you a fair amount of control over how much space you want it to use and you can delete games at any time. Some of the larger PC games can take a while to download, but most games are downloaded within a minute or two. Then you start it up and play. I have one PC hooked up to a TV, so it's like an uber-virtual console.

Well, some of the buttons are mapped. Circle is mapped to something or other because at the very least I can play Joust. Triangle either gives me a credit or pauses the game, depending on how long I press it.

With the paid account you can map the buttons any way you want, but I think they are still working the bugs out of the lite player. Have you tried re-mapping the buttons in Windows?

sraymonds
06-04-2007, 06:14 PM
I just picked up the free Gametap, and it's intriguing, but I'm going to need something more to pay for the service.

j00ey
06-04-2007, 06:20 PM
Gametap Lite is pretty cool if you have a work computer with a GPU that almost buckles under the technological prowess of Jedi Knight II. But oh my god they really should just throw custom joystick mapping in there. that kind of thing should NOT be a premium. (yeah yeah joytokey whatever)

Torgo
06-04-2007, 08:06 PM
But oh my god they really should just throw custom joystick mapping in there. that kind of thing should NOT be a premium. (yeah yeah joytokey whatever)
Completely agreed. Hopefully since it's still pretty new that it's just forthcoming and not premium.

That said, I had forgotten about joytokey. How do I figure out what keys Gametap makes use of? (You know, other then systematically going through every key on the board to find out.) I didn't see anything on the website or the Lite player that indicated.

Unless that's a Gold feature too.

Bellyaching aside, the one game I have gotten to play, Joust... wow. I had forgotten how great and downright elegantly simple that game is. It makes me wish I still had an Atari 7800. (I still have the cart, but the system broke long ago.)

chocogaz
06-04-2007, 08:34 PM
Maybe I should give this a try. I've been debating on Gametap for a while, this seems like an awesome chance to try it out.

Excitemike
06-04-2007, 08:46 PM
That said, I had forgotten about joytokey. How do I figure out what keys Gametap makes use of? (You know, other then systematically going through every key on the board to find out.) I didn't see anything on the website or the Lite player that indicated.

It's on the website. Look up the game and underneath the game summary there are hyperlinks for controls and instructions.

I've been a longtime Joust fan. Flying Ostriches! And the revolutionary "flap" button! And I recently realized that it has an easier Japanese cousin: Balloon Fight.

Maggie
06-04-2007, 08:52 PM
Ooh, they have Metal Slug. For free? Time to try this GameTap.

Torgo
06-04-2007, 08:56 PM
It's on the website. Look up the game and underneath the game summary there are hyperlinks for controls and instructions.

I've been a longtime Joust fan. Flying Ostriches! And the revolutionary "flap" button! And I recently realized that it has an easier Japanese cousin: Balloon Fight.
Thanks for the tips.

Anyway, since it's due to end tonight/tomorrow, would you be interested in a two-player round?

Maggie
06-04-2007, 09:16 PM
Ooh, ooh, I'm up for it. Pick me. I'm really not sure about this, though. I can't play games well on a keyboard, and I have no gamepads. So this is just not for me in the long run.

Torgo
06-04-2007, 09:20 PM
Find yourself a decent adapter online. They're pretty cheap.

But yes! Most certainly! ...if only they hadn't just closed down Joust. NOOOOOOOOOOO~! Prehaps Metal Slug then while it's still up?

Maggie
06-04-2007, 09:22 PM
Sure. I'm still trying to get the hang of this whole silly thing. It's all new and frightening to me.

Mightyblue
06-04-2007, 09:26 PM
Ooh, ooh, I'm up for it. Pick me. I'm really not sure about this, though. I can't play games well on a keyboard, and I have no gamepads. So this is just not for me in the long run.PROTIP: You can get PS2 USB adapters at Radioshacks. At least around here you can. I just got a wired 360 controller, and it works great.

Torgo
06-04-2007, 09:27 PM
I guess we go into the challenge lobby or something.

Maggie
06-04-2007, 09:29 PM
Yeah, I'm still.. not clear on this. I clicked buttons and yelled at the computer, but very little happened. Err, my username on there is ParanoiaToaster, by the way.

j00ey
06-04-2007, 10:18 PM
How do I figure out what keys Gametap makes use of? (You know, other then systematically going through every key on the board to find out.) I didn't see anything on the website or the Lite player that indicated.
The controls are linked on the overview pages, right below the description text. KOF, for example. (http://www.gametap.com/home/play/gameControls/120083350?ctrlId=8a250901015ef0c001016d74afaf0168) Did you know? ...that this is still bullshit?

Maggie
06-04-2007, 10:32 PM
That Metal Slugging was pretty intense. You see the world a lot differently when the pal you were fighting beside suddenly becomes a big red mess of pixel blood and gore and you think "Who is that screaming? Someone stop that person screaming."

Then you realize it's you.

Red Hedgehog
06-19-2007, 07:50 PM
Well, I was right about GameTap for Mac being Intel only. (http://www.macworld.com/news/2007/06/19/gametap/index.php)

Oh well, I'll probably get a new computer in the next year... or two... or three.

Kirin
06-20-2007, 09:17 AM
Bleh. My poor iMac sighs at its impending obsolescence.

djSyndrome
06-20-2007, 09:23 AM
Well, I was right about GameTap for Mac being Intel only. (http://www.macworld.com/news/2007/06/19/gametap/index.php)

THIS IS GOOD NEWS.

Think about it: there was no way that GT was going to write a feature-complete Mac Universal Binary client - the userbase just isn't there. Going this route may cut their Mac subscriber base from what it could have been, but it pretty much guarantees that Mac users will get the same features and games that are available on the PC side.

The jury is still out on how well GameTap will run under Cider, but I do have my fingers crossed. I'll be signing up when it goes online.