So basically how my night went down yesterday: finally got Batman: Arkham Asylum downloaded/installed (picked it up for 14 bones on Steam) and decided I would play it.
So I start it up and copy-pasta the CD Key, and it says my graphic drivers are out of date. "Well, that's reasonable" I thought and promptly did so without too much trouble. Then I boot B-man up again and the Windows LIVE bar overlay pops on the top of the screen.
Now, through a lack of an Xbox and the existence of Steam, I have never had to make a Windows/Xbox LIVE account before. A friend of mine has expressed a little frustration with it, but I never really worried too much.
"Hey," I imagine it saying, "Hey. Listen. We need that CD key again."
"Er, kay then..." I think to myself as I copy-paste the sequence for the second time.
After this, I'm ready to start, but LIVE pips in, "You can make an account or play the game now."
Well, I just wanted to get in the game at this point, so I hit the cancel button.
"You can't save if you aren't logged in!," it retorts.
A bit peeved, I proceed to alt-tab and fill in the account creation form and hit submit. This hangs for several minutes before completing. I set up my gamertag and get back in the game. I log in and wait while it "locates my account" before...
"-Oh shit, I totally forgot I have to update," LIVE remembers.
"Wait, I don't want you installed on my computer, I just want to play the game!" I cry out uselessly as a progress bar begins to snail its way across the screen.
LIVE points out, "This'll take a while, and you might have to restart your computer."
Once finished, LIVE boots me out to the desktop, where it plays with a shoddy looking install app and sucks me back into the game.
"Okay, fucking finally." I sigh, "let's go Dark Knight on some fools."
"What is it, LIVE."
"Well, about that CD key," LIVE mumbles awkwardly.
"Wait wait, stick with us, we just lost it and well, could you do it again? Oh, and without that handy copy-paste function that you thought was a really neat time-saver the first time around?"
"Fuck you Windows LIVE," I growl as I muddle through the sequence a third time.
"Hey now, we want you to play the game as much as you do," LIVE staunchly asserts.
I hit the "Activate CD key" button.
"-Oh shit, I totally forgot I have to update," LIVE remembers. A second time.
LIVE proceeds with its download and quits the game to the desktop.
"Uhh... LIVE? You done? Gonna give me any sort of indication of your update completion, or anything?"
Windows LIVE does not respond.
Both thankful and thoroughly suspicious, I start up Batman once more.
"Yo dood, you ready to beat up some bad guys?!!" LIVE joyfully sings as I log in.
And I'm greeted with the "create new save file" screen.
Oh and my only other major gripe with LIVE is the nauseating design. Please, the fewer bright blue gradients, curved-edged tabs and Aero windows I see the better. The color combinations are ugly. The navigation ripped out of the OS does NOT give it that "branded" feel, because it's overlayed on my game. Although, I do enjoy the clean, new Xbox swirlies on their website.
While I'm probably blowing things out of proportion, or at least had a uniquely bad experience, I'd like to hear what kind of experiences with Windows LIVE others have had, and general thoughts about it if anyone has them. Also, I didn't get into it much here, but how does it compare to Steam for you?