We've posted before on how the Vista brand will change the PC gaming market. But how will the OS affect the gameplay experience itself? An in-depth analysis of the operating system's draconian digital rights management features suggests gamers might not be too happy with some of the system's unintended performance effects.

The write-up itself is long and rather technical, but the main section of interest to gamers deals with unnecessary CPU resource consumption. Apparently, Vista does a sweep of all computer hardware over 30 times every second to make sure no one is trying to leech a digital video signal through a modification. Besides taking up valuable computing cycles, this method also makes it harder for the computer to perform video decompression, especially in low-end graphics chips.

While it remains to be seen how these "features" will actually impact Vista games, the fact that it's even an issue is enough to make us question Microsoft's devotion to Vista gaming. As the analysis' author puts it, "I wonder how [the gaming] market segment will react to knowing that their top-of-the-line hardware is being hamstrung by all of the content-protection "features" that Vista hogties it with?"

[Update: Fixed typo in headline]

[Via Boing Boing]

This article was originally published on Joystiq.

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