Nvidia is planing to limit availability of its game-ready WHQL drivers to be only through its GeForce Experience app.
GeForce Experience, Nvidia’s PC program that keeps getting better and more feature-rich as the months go by, will soon become the only way for players to get crucial game-ready drivers for their GPUs.
Game-ready drivers are released around the launch of almost all AAA games, and provide the best possible way to play those games on launch, and in some cases, the only way to realistically play those games.
Starting this December, the only way for players to get these drivers will be through GeForce Experience. Furthermore, they’ll need to have their email addresses registered and verified. The GeForce website and Windows Update will no longer grab the latest drivers, only the quarterly ones.
“We kind of have two camps in terms of gamers. On one hand you have the gamer that’s just casually playing things here and there, using their system for daily use and gaming on the side. They don’t want to be inundated with these [Game Ready] drivers,” said Nvidia’s Sean Pelletier.
“On the other side of the equation you have enthusiast gamers, who get excited about pre-loading a game, who want to play a game the day it comes out with all the bells and whistles. That’s obviously the demographic we’re looking at for Game Ready drivers. We’re targeting GFE as a single-source destination for those gamers.”
Needless to say, a lot of fans are not happy. For one thing, unnecessarily locking GPU drivers – an essential part of PC gaming – behind an account and software download goes against the ethos of PC gaming’s openness, and isn’t really that beneficial.
That being said, because some people won’t accept this, there’s surely going to be a way to extract said drivers whenever they’re released on GeForce Experience and distribute them online. Probably through the same websites gained fame in the 90s for this very reason.