Microsoft has confirmed that changes to the way Windows 8.1 interfaces with pointing devices compared to previous releases are causing heartache for gamers, and promises it is working on a fix for the flaw.
Shortly after the release of Windows 8.1, the free upgrade made available to all Windows 8 users, gamers began to notice glitches in the way their mice worked. Games that had been butter-smooth on Windows 8 suddenly started juddering and jumping, 1:1 mouse movement stopped working, and polling frequencies were dropped significantly compared to prior releases.
For twitch-gamers, any one of the above problems were enough to swear off upgrading to Windows 8.1 - but Microsoft states that it is working on the issues. 'We want to thank our gaming community for the detailed feedback many of you have provided on these issues,
' a Microsoft spokesperson posted
on the company's Answers site. 'While we don’t have a date yet for the release of a fix, we are working to get these issues resolved as quickly as possible. The “mouse lag” issue is actually several different issues that could vary based on the game, input methods used, etc.
Sadly, Microsoft isn't at the point where it can offer workarounds for these issues - short of asking gamers to check whether their titles support raw mouse input, which would bypass the application programming interface (API) causing problems in Windows 8.1. Other reported bugs - including the pointer being restricted from reaching all areas of a game's window, and an inability to left-click on laptop trackpads immediately after pressing a key - do come with a few recommended ways of reducing their impact.
Beyond that, the company is simply asking gamers to be patient and wait for a fix for the flaw, or to try running older games in compatibility mode, available from the Properties menu when right-clicking on a game's shortcut.