Jimquisition: Why An Always-On DRM Console Would Be Dumb Dumb Dumb

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BOOM! And that was the big picture.

It was, though. Very informed, very interesting, and most of all, completely logical. I have no desire to buy any console that requires me to be online constantly, even though I have pretty damn good internet.

You know I'm curious what Jim will do when the industry really does crash.

the antithesis:
And that's how the Ouya will outsell the next Xbox. Deal with it.

Except it won't. At all. The Ouya is already failing as is with the few consoles that have been released due to its horrendous menu system and constant pop-ups telling you to pay for something.

Azriel Nightshade:
Why is always on-line for consols detrimental, but always online via Steam exempt from scrutiny?

I'm not asking this to be contrarian or witty, I'm generally curious. Mainly because the only two PC games I play are WoW and LoL, both on an 5 year old iMac. So I'm a bit out of the loop.

Because, loathe as I am to defend Steam, it's not actually "always online."

When my internet was cut about a month ago (because Comcast is stupid and can't process checks on time for some reason), I was still able to access and play my games. It didn't kick me out of Magic 2013 when my internet went down and it didn't stop me from launching other titles for the two days it took me to get my internet back.

The rumours here are that it'll kick you for three minutes of inactivity.

Do you honestly feel those two are comparable scenarios?

Capitano Segnaposto:

the antithesis:
And that's how the Ouya will outsell the next Xbox. Deal with it.

Except it won't. At all. The Ouya is already failing as is with the few consoles that have been released due to its horrendous menu system and constant pop-ups telling you to pay for something.

It's also going to be annual, isn't it? I'm pretty sure that a new Ouya every year will be a problem.

Well, damn.

That closing statement was REALLY impressive.

Uratoh:
How long until there's a shiny new jim sterling 'deal with it' gif? XD

Sir Thomas Sean Connery:
I need this immediately.

WaitWHAT:

NOT SOON ENOUUUGGGH!!

Someone make it NOW!!!!

Got it done as soon as could, I might have a higher quality version up later.
image

Proverbial Jon:
Agreed. On every level.

I have a pretty poor internet connection where I am and I'm not exactly in the middle of nowhere, I'm in the south of England, not much more than 70 miles from London itself. Yet my internet probably wouldn't sustain a strong connection all the time. It drops considerably low between 5pm and midnight, which is my normal gaming time.

Needless to say, PS3 updates take FOREVER and most times I'll avoid using that particular console simply for that reason. If there's an always on DRM console released, you can be sure I won't buy it based simply on those grounds.

^ I have two kinds of internet from the same provider. "WOW THIS IS FAST AND GREAT!" Or I get "DEAR LORD IN HEAVEN WHY DOES IT KEEP BOOTING ME OFF EVERY 5 MINUTES!!!!??!?!?!"

Also Jim

by Peter Moore, EA chief operating officer
Many continue to claim the Always-On function in SimCity is a DRM scheme. It's not. People still want to argue about it. We can't be any clearer - it's not. Period.

That was an order not a request we need to listen to his commands lest he smite us and take away our Origin games.

Zachary Amaranth:

Legion:
I think the reason they have that kind of attitude is because they are banking on sales from the kind of people who will buy the console because it's all shiny and new rather than for any other reason.

If you're talking about douchetagdealwithit, I think it's more the fact that people don't understand the repercussions of social media. As Nash said, there will come a time where we are intimately familiar with the size, shape and colour of our President's genitals (because they tweeted them 30 years ago).

Then again, the gaming industry seems to be behind the ball on a lot of things, too.

I mean the "Who gives a crap what the customers think?" attitude. Most places such as shops and restaurants will go too far to please their customers, apologising and offering refunds/replacements even when it isn't their fault.

The games industry seems more like our banks, water, gas and electricity suppliers. Constantly screwing us over because they know they can get away with it. They show very little desire to actually keep us happy as consumers.

Obviously I don't mean all companies, it also seems to be more common among the publishers than the developers.

Almost the only people who are not affected by this kind of attitude are the kind who don't spend a lot of time discussing games like we do. People who will see it advertised on the television and "have to get the latest thing", and will buy it without looking at the problems.

Scrustle:
MS needs to realise that it produces a luxury item. As much as gamers are willing to put up with shit to play their favourite games, we all realise that we don't really need to play them. These are things we fill our time with to entertain us. Comparing it to things like phones and vacuum cleaners is ridiculous. Those things are necessary items. We put up with problems with them because the need for them will not go away. If the electricity goes out or the mobile network doesn't cover wherever we happen to be, we wait until those services return and attempt again.

It's not just a luxery item, it's one luxery item among many others that don't require a constant online connection and that provide more or less the same kind of entertainment.

If Microsoft is putting DRM on their console they're not just shooting themselves in the foot, they're blowing their own legs clean off. And the fact that we haven't heard anyone from their side dismissing these rumors is only making them more concrete.

DVS BSTrD:
Got it done as soon as could, I might have a higher quality version up later.
image

*wipes away tear*

That was beautiful....just.....beautiful....

Come here and hug me, bro.

Nintendo is the only one I see that will still be around if there is another crash.

Scrustle:
MS needs to realise that it produces a luxury item. As much as gamers are willing to put up with shit to play their favourite games, we all realise that we don't really need to play them. These are things we fill our time with to entertain us. Comparing it to things like phones and vacuum cleaners is ridiculous. Those things are necessary items. We put up with problems with them because the need for them will not go away. If the electricity goes out or the mobile network doesn't cover wherever we happen to be, we wait until those services return and attempt again.

If crappy servers go down just that one time too many, we won't wait any more. We'll go buy a PS4 instead. Or maybe we'll get a PC, or even watch a movie or read a book. Whatever example you can think of. But if your luxury product doesn't work exactly when it is convenient for us, then don't expect our patience to last very long. You can't demand that we "deal with it", you need to deal with us. If you're not fulfilling our requirements, then we're not going to give you our money. Simple as that. You need to work around our demands, not the other way around.

The stupidest thing about all this is that our demands aren't even that complicated. We don't really care about all this fancy gimmicky shit. We just want a machines which has sufficient power to run games, and for those games to be fun. Maybe a few online features as well, like online play and download services. We'll gladly give you money for that. Instead you'd rather overcomplicate everything, treat us like criminals right from the word go, and try to squeeze as much money out of us at every single possible opportunity.

Not to mention that a vacuum cleaner and a mobile phone NEED electricity or a network to function. That is the biggest flaw in that argument imo. There is now way to create a device with the same functionality and efficiency without using electricity or a satellite network. Diablo 3 doesn't need a constant internet connection if you're playing alone. Yet we are still forced to have one for no reason other then to stop piracy. D3 could easily function without it though. A vacuum cleaner could not function at all without electricity. Besides, power outages don't really occur that often (at least in Western Europe and the US) and the mobile network still continues to function even under very high load such as during new years. The servers for D3 or SimCity? Not so much. No one complains that League of Legends is always on. The reason being that you NEED an internet connection for that game to work. Its build around multiplayer. Unless it only supports non split-screen multiplayer games the next gen consoles wont NEED a constant internet connection to function.

Capitano Segnaposto:

the antithesis:
And that's how the Ouya will outsell the next Xbox. Deal with it.

Except it won't. At all. The Ouya is already failing as is with the few consoles that have been released due to its horrendous menu system and constant pop-ups telling you to pay for something.

Let's wait until the console actually launches, yeah? The software isn't supposed to be finalized until launch, so that's a pointless criticism at this point in time. Right now only backers have access to what is essentially a beta version, if even that.
Although suggesting that it will outsell the Xbox is still ludicrous, it won't even put a dent into mainstream console sales.

DVS BSTrD:

Uratoh:
How long until there's a shiny new jim sterling 'deal with it' gif? XD

Sir Thomas Sean Connery:
I need this immediately.

WaitWHAT:

NOT SOON ENOUUUGGGH!!

Someone make it NOW!!!!

Got it done as soon as could, I might have a higher quality version up later.
image

Mine's is better, DVS! =P

image

OT: Anyway, I couldn't agree more, Jim. Hell, I actually get a decent internet most of the time, and my Xbox 360 can still be extremely pissy with it. So if the always online thing is true, I won't be picking up a 720/Durango/whatever it is, that's for sure.

You never disappoint Jim // I have a cast in point about always on DRM from consoles // On Friday we hooked up a new modem for the hose as the old was was getting on in years and would bug out from time to time // So we set it up, password and all and everything was working fine, computer's set up, phone works on the wifi but wait, my 360 could not connect // Maybe it's the password, nope, maybe its connection, nope. . . oh wait, it's that the 360 doesn't like the drivers of that modem so I've been jumping through hoops to get it working // It's Monday and I still can't connect // Now this is not a big deal as I don't play any games on my 360 that needs an online connection, what's what I have a pc and phone for, but imagine if this DRM was in effect now?! Firstly with my old modem I'd never be able to play any games as it would bug out a lot and now I can't even connect to my new modem because of reason

I don't even see myself buying any of the next gen consoles for money reasons and I'm quite happy with the ones I have now so I won't need too

-M

Azriel Nightshade:
Why is always on-line for consols detrimental, but always online via Steam exempt from scrutiny?

I'm not asking this to be contrarian or witty, I'm generally curious. Mainly because the only two PC games I play are WoW and LoL, both on an 5 year old iMac. So I'm a bit out of the loop.

Steam has gotten a lot of money from me over the years despite being a DRM system. And the only reason it has is because I'm secure in the knowledge that if Steam ever fails on me I can go to gamecopyworld or piratebay or even shadier corners of the internet and find cracks for all of the games I purchased to remove the Steam authentication.

In other words Valve doesn't have control over whether or not I can play the games I bought, they only have control over whether or not I have access to their network. It is a gentleman's agreement that either party can walk away from at any time without losing anything.

Its cool if Microsoft wanna go and make the next Xbox always online, ive been looking for an excuse to buy an Alienware laptop and unlike the Xbox this things designed to go online and I can watch Jim rant about shit whilst playing old games that I missed out on and can't play no more because you arn't backwards compatable!

I WANNA PLAY 'STRANGERS WRATH', IT LOOKS REALLY FUN!!!

linkmastr001:

Azriel Nightshade:
Why is always on-line for consols detrimental, but always online via Steam exempt from scrutiny?

I'm not asking this to be contrarian or witty, I'm generally curious. Mainly because the only two PC games I play are WoW and LoL, both on an 5 year old iMac. So I'm a bit out of the loop.

Steam has an offline mode, which usually works (I know I've had issues with it on occasion) and lets you play your games without the connection. If it didn't, I don't think people would be happy with it at all.

Fair enough.

Zachary Amaranth:

Azriel Nightshade:
Why is always on-line for consols detrimental, but always online via Steam exempt from scrutiny?

I'm not asking this to be contrarian or witty, I'm generally curious. Mainly because the only two PC games I play are WoW and LoL, both on an 5 year old iMac. So I'm a bit out of the loop.

Because, loathe as I am to defend Steam, it's not actually "always online."

When my internet was cut about a month ago (because Comcast is stupid and can't process checks on time for some reason), I was still able to access and play my games. It didn't kick me out of Magic 2013 when my internet went down and it didn't stop me from launching other titles for the two days it took me to get my internet back.

The rumours here are that it'll kick you for three minutes of inactivity.

Do you honestly feel those two are comparable scenarios?

As a 1-1 comparison, no. Unless I run into Linkmastr001's issue where Steam's offline mode is not working in my favor. Still, I want to see how Microsoft will handel this potential issue when it has examples of other types of DRM to learn from.

I personally don't care if the new Xbox is always online. The part that interests me is the how.

rembrandtqeinstein:

Steam has gotten a lot of money from me over the years despite being a DRM system. And the only reason it has is because I'm secure in the knowledge that if Steam ever fails on me I can go to gamecopyworld or piratebay or even shadier corners of the internet and find cracks for all of the games I purchased to remove the Steam authentication.

In other words Valve doesn't have control over whether or not I can play the games I bought, they only have control over whether or not I have access to their network. It is a gentleman's agreement that either party can walk away from at any time without losing anything.

Let's pretend Microsoft offered you refunds for games you. A) Didn't want anymore or B) found not to your liking.

In this senario you received credit to a new game. How would you feel about always online then?

(I would have said "full money back refund", but that would have been too hypothetical.

I live in one of those "joke" areas where them internets is just a dream within and dream and we marry out sisters...or not. But really, my internet connection is awful and so are most of the people that live near me. I have to go to my Uni's MU to use high speed internet. Always online is a bad idea!

As Jim mentioned the number of people who don't have their consoles connected to the net is substantial.Xbox Live has something like 46 million users.Given that MS have sold over 75 million 360s that means almost half of 360 owners either can't or have no interest in hooking their console up to the internet.Would MS really be so stupid as to alienate almost half their current market?

ZZoMBiE13:
And hopefully some self awareness that LIVE GOLD is no longer the value it once was.

When was Live Gold ever good value?Paying an extra fee on top of the cost of a game so you're not locked out of stuff you've already paid for is pretty much the opposite of good value I would say

Andy Shandy:

DVS BSTrD:

Uratoh:
How long until there's a shiny new jim sterling 'deal with it' gif? XD

Sir Thomas Sean Connery:
I need this immediately.

WaitWHAT:

NOT SOON ENOUUUGGGH!!

Someone make it NOW!!!!

Got it done as soon as could, I might have a higher quality version up later.
image

Mine's is better, DVS! =P

image

Your claim is instantly invalidated by the fact that mine has more Sterling in it.

WaitWHAT:

*wipes away tear*

That was beautiful....just.....beautiful....

Come here and hug me, bro.

I happen to have a giff 4 that 2.
image

For any company/publisher I just have to say this:

*sigh* why do song lyrics make the best responses,seriously that song is just perfect,for those who want to hear what it sounds like here:

the antithesis:
And that's how the Ouya will outsell the next Xbox. Deal with it.

I am so looking forward to the day when that happens. If all these rumours turn out to be true, it's looking very likely it'll go that way. The Shield will outsell it too and even the friggin $1.5k Razer Edge might outsell it.

Jim....you made me fist pump in the air and shout FUCK YEAH! at the end there.

An always on console model might be able to work if the consoles were little more then a bare-bones cable box that connects users to the game servers where all the computing power goes on. This would serve the multiplayer FPS market as it would cut down on the potential for cheating at the consumer level. However the only way this system would have an advantage over just getting a computer is if it was a portable device with build in WiFi. I do not know if this business model could be made profitable accept that a smaller device with less computing power would be cheaper to produce and sell. Nintendo figured this out a while ago.

I actually do kind of see the mobile market outselling the consoles...kind of in the same way when MovieBob mentioned that PC gaming was now dead because the PC as we know it is dying. In this case, console gaming is dying because now the mobile devices are becoming like consoles. So...I suspect the whole DRM debacle will slowly go away because no one will want to buy a traditional console anymore because of this drek.

Huh...maybe we will get the retinal eyeball gaming MovieBob mentioned soon enough. Possibly evolving from a Google Glass app.

DVS BSTrD:

WaitWHAT:

*wipes away tear*

That was beautiful....just.....beautiful....

Come here and hug me, bro.

I happen to have a giff 4 that 2.
image

D'aaawww....

(Better avoid low content. Uhhhmmm.....)

Would anyone out there actually but this console? I mean, like, what would it take to convince you to put up with always-online? I mean, Simcity and Diablo 3 still sold, didn't they? How much of a problem do you think this would cause?

excellent episode, yet again Jim. I'm just glad I built a PC when I did XD

Also, I find it rather amusing that Adam Orth's twitter account has been protected (is that the right word?)/ made private.

Capitano Segnaposto:

the antithesis:
And that's how the Ouya will outsell the next Xbox. Deal with it.

Except it won't. At all. The Ouya is already failing as is with the few consoles that have been released due to its horrendous menu system and constant pop-ups telling you to pay for something.

Yes, let's start criticizing the Ouya months before it's been released. Please ignore the fact that it's not even in an official Beta yet with its UI system and is already moving to fix it, and that those reviews are unfair at best as a result. Otherwise, we might be giving an ambitious up and coming console with the potential to do something great for indie developers its fair due. *eye roll*

The Ouya will probably never outsell the NeXtbox or whatever the hell they inevitably call it, but it's not designed to, and that's not for what the Ouya is aiming. It's a more niche market sold at a reasonable price for those who want it. We'll know months from now what the system is, and years from now what the system can be (remember, it's been announced for less than a year, and most games have a development cycle much longer than that).

That said, Jim is right on the money here. Always online is a horrible policy that simply cannot work in today's world. The infrastructure isn't there, the developers and publishers can't be trusted to make it work, and it detracts from what people actually want from a system: fun simple games that just work . So... yeah, don't be that dumb, Microsoft. Please.

I agree with Jim that the consoles are dying. (not just because I'm a PC gamer).

But their main advantage (pop a game in and go) is gone. And with always the always online prerequisites it's only going to accelerate it...

Haven't even bought a console THIS generation. I doubt I will the next either. I'm sticking to my PC (without being smug and looking down on those that do not).

Not one of Jim's best episodes, he's basically repeating the arguments that every other gamer has figured out, from the same angle no less.

What about mentioning how combining Always Online with mandatory Kinect would turn things into an Orwellian nightmare?

Or how about if Microsoft made the Xbox 720 Always Online while at the same time demand a subscription fee for next-gen Xbox LIVE? Subscription ran out? I hope you enjoy having your expensive game collection turn into coasters!

Always Online is a bad practice on its own, but if we look at the other practices Microsoft has used during this gen, it becomes all the more frightening

Spot on, Jim.

One thing that is worth underlining is that while before we were dealing with multi-platform game developers such as EA, now we're talking about one CONSOLE. Can you imagine a game dev, that is already knee deep in shait, failing to survive while selling millions of copies, taking the time to make games for the new XBOX? Can you imagine any good AAA XBOX-only title? HA!!!! Devs will avoid the XBOX like a plague and run to the warm embrace of Steam, Sony and Nintendo. XBOX will crash faster than a Hindenburg made of bricks. If that's so clearly apparent to us, I doubt that Microsoft would be that stupid to actually do it. Maybe this is just a marketing trick to make us breathe a sigh of relief. On the other hand... looking at Windows 8 and its monumentally stupid Start Menu... who knows?

Norrdicus:
snip

In that case, NOBODY would buy it. Simple. As things stand right now, Microsoft simply expects the same "booooo... but I'll still buy it" attitude that EA got away with so far. But nobody would go THAT far.

WaitWHAT:
Would anyone out there actually but this console? I mean, like, what would it take to convince you to put up with always-online? I mean, Simcity and Diablo 3 still sold, didn't they? How much of a problem do you think this would cause?

I reluctantly tolerated D3's online requirement. Blizzard is at least consistent with maintenance downtime and server restarts. Microsoft would have to show a similar level of consistency before I would consider it. Even then I wouldn't buy it because my ISP is so unreliable and there are no alternatives in my area.

*sigh* I will miss Halo... I really will. But it would seem that MS may chose to take a path which I cannot follow.

http://www.eurogamer.net/articles/2013-04-08-next-xbox-reveal-due-21st-may-costs-usd500-or-usd300-with-a-subscription-reports-suggest

In this article, Paul Thurrot hints that 'always online' was in the notes he received about the system a while back, but he does nothing to confirm if it's true or not. It's staggering to hear, however, because I imagine that if 'always online' were merely a rumor, he would have dismissed it.

For me, there is not a SINGLE advantage to being always online. Outside of Xbox Live, which I only use for a few games, my 360 provides me with nothing that I cannot currently do on my computer, tablet, or laptop. And guess what; I can connect my PC to my television quite easily if I want to put Netflix up on the big screen. It's laughable that Microsoft still thinks that we want to get an Xbox for Hulu, ESPN, Twitter, Skype, or Last FM. Even for people outside of my living room arrangement, smart TVs are providing all of these services through the TV. I can see Smart TVs becoming the mainstream television, and then, what will the justification for 'always online' be?

The fact of the matter is that there is no justification for an always online console, save one - for Microsoft to exert control over their consumers.

Also, I'm glad you brought up GameStop. The company is like a lightening rod for hate on the internet, but I'd guess that more than 3/4 of the people that bitch about them online still shop there. I mean... they make tons of money and publishers are always doing marketing deals with them. Someone has to be shopping there.

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