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Installing Xbox 360 games: Is it worth it?

It's a much-lauded feature of the New Xbox Experience, but does it really make a difference for load times? Gears of War 2, Call of Duty: World at War, and Mirror's Edge were all tested.

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Raoh2813d ago

hard call to make. i mainly do it with games i play often to eliminate the disc spinning noise.

as far as load times. cant say i see much difference.

anyone know if there is an issue with online games where one person has faster loading times with install and one person has slower loading times without installs?

just asking.

ChanDangle2813d ago

Agree with you there. I do it mainly for noise purposes only.

SynGamer2813d ago (Edited 2813d ago )

I have 327 games and counting indexed so far...including game performance ratings for 50+ games.

http://www.cheapassgamer.co...

Overall, the silence alone is worth installing games, not to mention many of them show at least *some* improvement in terms of load times.

Zeevious2812d ago

If you have the space and are regularly playing a game, installing to cut out DVD-Drive noise is great.

The couple seconds to nothing gained in loading though was a real disappointment to me. I don't see how loading from a 4200 or 5400 RPM Hard Drive can be the same speed or give you such a slight improvement it doesn't matter.

Maybe something to do with the disc protection, or due to streaming requirements it must throttle the actual speed to the DVD-Drive's data transfer rate?

Either way, it at least reduces drive noise, and that's at least enough of a benefit for me.

DA_SHREDDER2812d ago

My 360 runs alot cooler now since Ive been installing every game that I play alot. Everyone who has any experience with electronics knows the most important thing to do with your electronics is to keep them as cool as possible. You pretty much just extend the life span of your system by doing that. Also, less noise comes from the system. How can you go wrong by installing your games?

Kushan2812d ago

The reason load times aren't THAT different is two-fold. Firstly, the DISK is optimised to be loaded as quickly as possible, naturally some of those optimisations are going to be counter-intuitive when the data is copied to the hard drive, moreso if the game also caches stuff to the hard drive (As in Halo 3 and Gears 2). Secondly, when a game loads, it's not JUST loading data from the disk into memory, there's quite a bit more to it than that. Texture data is decompressed, game data is decompressed and calculated, various other forms of data are computed and this is where a lot of the loading comes from. It's not just the 360, the PS3 is the same, but in that instance the slower read speeds of the BR drive have a cumulative effect.

Zeevious2812d ago

I'd figured it was something like that...a .ISO-like disc image but I thought the DVD-Drives actual firmware had something to do with disk decryption/authentication. Emulation or redirection of that firmware might be in there somewhere too.

At first, after reading some of the times compiled in a list of installed games I wasn't going to bother. (with an average 5-second loading increase I guessed you'd need to play a game 120 times before getting back the 10 minutes you spent on installing it)

I'm glad I DIDN'T listen to the voice of unreasonable reason!

The quiet of running off the hard drive really makes everything sound better...Now if I could just get this suspiciously familiar looking guy to stop loitering on my screen, I'd be set. ;)

+ Show (3) more repliesLast reply 2812d ago
TBaT2813d ago

Ya really who cares about a few seconds difference in load times. The main problem was the noise of the spinning drive and that has been solved now. These people are missing the point.

tplarkin72813d ago

In games like Fallout, or Fable, a few seconds means alot when you are jumping back and forth on a map.

El_Colombiano2813d ago

With the MINI HDDs that came with the original Pros....not at all. you'd be lucky to fit two games in there.

But with the 120GB and 60GB....maybe a game or two. Partial installs FTW, full...not so much.

dragunrising2813d ago (Edited 2813d ago )

I don't know where you went to school but more than 2 games fit on a 60/120 GB hard drive. I have a 120 GB and have all 4 discs of Lost Odyssey installed- 28 GB total. I have Gears 2, Left 4 Dead, Fallout3, Ninja Gaiden 2, Cod: WaW, The Orange Box, Bioshock, GTAIV, Mass Effect, AND Dead Rising installed. One or two games my butt.

The games themselves take less than 5 to 8 minutes to install. In games with lots of streaming (think Lost Odyssey and Mass Effect) initial load times are cut down quite a bit not to mention texture pop in. The decrease in the fan noise is also nice however it wasn't bad for me to begin with (have a quiet Ben-Q drive).

Colombiano- considering your words, it would appear you have nothing interesting/relevant to add. Reported you as SPAM.

ActionBastard2812d ago (Edited 2812d ago )

I have Mass Effect installed and it has done NOTHING for the texture pop in. That game is a technical mess. Let's at least be honest. Unless you really are blindfromthesun?

Kushan2812d ago

I'm not disagreeing with the technical....limitations in Mass Effect, but surely you can't blame Microsoft on that one? Game installs aren't going to be a silver bullet that makes everything much better, but at least for the few games they do help, they're worth it. Mostly older games, it seems.

dragunrising2812d ago (Edited 2812d ago )

Sometimes I confuse certain terms. Sorry. Perhaps this clears up what I meant to say:

"No more “Loading” pauses when moving too fast. Elevator load times are identical (hardcoded)"

http://www.bingegamer.net/2...

And yes, I am who I say I am. Add me on Live if your still skeptical.

ActionBastard2812d ago

Thanks for the clarification blindfromthesun. Totally agree on the loading pauses, but the pop in is awful. And I definitely believe you are who you say you are. My reference was a failed attempt at a joke. Bubbles for remaining civil!

dragunrising2812d ago

lol, likewise. Bubbles. Sometimes its hard :-p

I appreciate your quest to end misinformation, though I wish you helped me with number three point O

Cheers

Richdad2812d ago (Edited 2812d ago )

FOr me they have reduced to a good extent, Texture popins where mostly occured in ME and GTA4 but after installation GTA4 textures popins where negligable and no matter how fast I drive say a car texture popins where still low.
In ME texture popins where still there but they where lower than on disc plus loading time while freerun gone and any tutorial and cutscene started without a hiccup. For me installation gave me better experience than before. Although I think as my 360 is 2 years old so and possible its drive is aging so that might have to do something with it.

+ Show (4) more repliesLast reply 2812d ago
LostChild2813d ago (Edited 2813d ago )

I only seem to install open-world games like Fallout3, GTAIV, Saints etc or games with a lot of loading, to get from one place to another. But onces I am finish with those games, I end up deleteding them off my HDD and I have a 120g.

Blaze9292813d ago

Seeing as im pretty sure none of these games were optimized for installs, of course there wont be much of a difference. gears in fact runs worse when its installed. I got a 120GB HDD and just install few games to cut down the noise and shut of the disc drive plus it runs alot cooler.

Is it worth it? For a longer system life span, i say yes.

LostChild2813d ago

Totally agree even though I didn't have any trouble running gears but I did have trouble running Naruto and had to convert back play from disk.

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