It would seem that the first order of business for the newly loud-and-proud PC Gaming Alliance is to announce that Microsoft and Nvidia have quit the PC Gaming Alliance.
Newly-installed PC Gaming Alliance President Matt Ployhar said last week that one of his priorities is to give the group a higher profile with gamers, promising to make it "a lot more public and vocal and vociferous" than it has been so far. But he probably didn't expect that his first such public pronouncement would be to reveal that Microsoft and Nvidia, two of the biggest players in the industry, are no longer in the club.
Ployhar confirmed with Big Download that the two companies had left the group, although he declined to comment on what motivated their decision to leave. He did say, however, that he doesn't think their departure will affect the PCGA, although it would seem to deal a bit of a blow to his plan, detailed on his Intel blog, "to flesh out the PCGA's technical expertise while simultaneously addressing perceived gaps in membership."
Microsoft and Nvidia aren't the first heavy-hitters to bail out on the PCGA; Activision pulled out out of the alliance in April 2009. Its member roll is still impressive, including companies like Intel, GameStop, Epic Games, the Entertainment Merchants Association and Sony DADC, but without those three on the list it's hard to imagine that the group's relevance won't become increasingly questionable.
UPDATE: A Microsoft spokesperson says the company's decision to leave the PC Gaming Alliance is not an indictment of the group but rather a sign of the PC's strength as a gaming platform.
"At the time we joined the PC Gaming Alliance, the primary purpose was to change the false perception that PC gaming was dying. With that perception successfully changed, we have decided to not continue our membership and instead focus that energy on our own internal efforts, including the return of our flagship PC franchises Age of Empires and Microsoft Flight," the rep said. "We made this decision so that we could put more time and energy into our own PC gaming efforts. And we will continue to work with our partners to drive the continued growth of Windows as a game platform."
So there you have it. All is well!