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December 8, 2008

Giving the new Games for Windows – LIVE desktop client a spin


It was noticed last week that Games for Windows – LIVE now has a new desktop client. The Games for Windows – LIVE desktop client is designed to deliver free content in the Marketplace such as game demos and videos like trailers to PC gamers. The Games for Windows – LIVE client will also deliver premium downloadable content like additional maps and levels for your games that can be purchased.

Download: Games for Windows – LIVE desktop client

I figured I’d give the new client a spin and share my experience walking through the client.


To login, I used the same Windows Live ID as my Xbox Live Gamertag.


After logging in, I was presented with key gaming announcements for Games for Windows – LIVE as well as what’s new in the Marketplace, News, and Tips & Tricks. On the top left, the client has several “sections” presented sort of like tabs: Home, Marketplace, My Media, and Settings.



Under Marketplace – I was able to choose from a variety of content being offered such as game trailers like the one for the James Bond game Quantum of Solace. This is also the place where you will find premium content for games. I am also able to check my balance of Microsoft Points and recently played LIVE games. You can see I’ve played Shadowrun and Halo 2 – although it’s been a while. I could choose to view content in the Marketplace by Game title which is nice. That means I could choose a specific game and see all the content for that game in the Marketplace.

I wanted to grab some content so I decided to download the “Reveal” trailer for Quantum of Solace. I was thinking about picking this game up.


When I clicked on the Quantum of Solace “Reveal” trailer – I was taken to the download page for the trailer which allowed me to either watch the trailer directly within the client or download it in high resolution as a .wmv file. I downloaded the high resolution video which played nicely in Windows Media Player, Zune, and Windows Media Center.

NOTE: The Games for Windows – LIVE client puts all game videos under your Videos folder within your user profile in Windows Vista. The Zune software will automatically see these videos – where you can then choose to sync with your Zune device.

The video I downloaded shows up under My Media. All premium game content and videos show up here.


You can manage all downloaded content under My Media. So if I were wanting to delete some downloaded content I could do so here.


And in Settings, I was able to customize where the Games for Windows – LIVE client puts downloaded Game Demos and Game Videos. If I wanted – I could also clear all stored profiles as well.

In testing the Games for Windows – LIVE client, I used my 64-bit PC and the client functioned just fine. So you 64-bit users out there will have no problem installing and using this.

Expect to see more news happening around the release of the Games for Windows – LIVE client in the future as well as more content being delivered to the Marketplace for games under Games for Windows – LIVE.