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GameShadow - patching made easy?

by Nick Haywood on 12 October 2005, 09:43

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Gameshadow – Making life easy for gamers?



Picture the scene; you rush out and buy the latest and greatest game, feverishly whip off the packaging and install it to then find the damn thing keeps crashing to desktop for no reason… Yep, it’s patch time. But which patch do you get? Is it the version 1.01 to 1.03 or have you already got 1.02 in which case you need the 1.02a to 1.03… You’ve got to face it, sometimes patching can be a nightmare.

Yes, patching is a way of life for PC gamers and despite repeated moans about how games shouldn’t need to be patched, you’ll have to face facts and just get used to it. We’re not going to go into the arguments for and against patching here, we’ll save that for another day. Let’s just face it that PC gaming comes with patching like a weekend in Ibiza comes with a visit to the clinic. Neither are nice but both are necessary if you want to play around.

Historically, patching has been to either fix known bugs or to tweak gameplay and now, more often, patches add extra content too, which makes them worthwhile getting, but the problem is finding the right version. Players of Oleg Maddox’s Pacific Fighters know full well just how damn hard that game is to patch. For a start you can do two different installs, and the horrendous amount of patches brought out after release mean that you must install some and not others depending on how far you have already patched… an utter nightmare if you re-install the game for some reason.

But even if you get the right patch for your version, there’s no sure guarantee that the game will run, as witness by thousands of players with EA’s first Battlefield 2 patch. Or, as has happened with Pacific Fighters in the past, you might patch up only to find no-one is using the latest patch as a new bug has been found and you still can’t play online.

Doesn’t all this leave you thinking that, to paraphrase the NatWest advert, ‘There must be another way’?. Well now there is. It’s called GameShadow, it’s being bundled with an ever increasing amount of new games and it’s worth taking a look at. We had a chat with Tony Treadwell, CEO of GameShadow and Nicholas Lovell, Non Executive Director about what GameShadow is, what it does and what it offers for the future.