Xbox? Done.

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Xbox? Done.

MovieBob isn't too impressed with Microsoft's plans for the Xbox One.

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Well, if it is true that the concept of ownership is being turned from product to service with permission, then gamers are screwed since Microsoft is probably going to have cloud issues and take out everyone's games.

Pretty much this, Izanagi. This, the fact that the Wii U's Amazon sales have skyrocketed, UK polls showing that the Xbone has been given a very frigid reception, and the fact that my one industry buddy is now considering jumping ship as a consumer, from consoles to a desktop PC - all of that shows me that Microsoft and Sony are probably trying to bite more than they can chew.

I don't doubt that all the platforms will eventually have the same amount of evangelists and fanboys, but I wouldn't be surprised if initial sales for the new Xbox end up disappointing market researchers.

That is, assuming the community has a good long-term memory. Which it doesn't always have.

I completely agree with you.

The only thing you didn't go into was the Kinect and the data they can have on us. And even if they wouldn't misuse them (Who's goanna believe that). What happens when hackers get them?

And in the end when you look at the Kinect and know what they doing. It feels very creepy.

Well you've managed to expand upon my nagging fear of cloud data storage and justify it more succinctly then I would have thought to. And I also hate throwing away things that used to work.

I jumped ship in the middle of the 360 life cycle. Shifted to PC gaming and am thoroughly content with it. I have not looked back ever since and I implore others to vote with your wallet. If you don't want this then don't buy it. Eventually they will realize when their quarterly returns are lower than expected.

My biggest fear is that one day steam will disappear, taking away most of my game collection

In all the furor over the XBone, no-one has yet to comment on a similar service that already exists, one that ties your games to the console manufacturer's continued existence. Namely, Playstation Network Plus. If you subscribe to that, you get a myriad of premium features (why auto-updating firmware is a premium feature, I don't know, that should be standard), but to get back to the topic, they either discounted certain games or give them to you for free. However, those games can only be played as long as you are a paid subscriber. Should your subscription end, or the Sony server datacenter is bombed out of existence, you lose the ability to play them, just like what the XBone is threatening to do. Suddenly, subscribing to PSN+ isn't so that you, the customer, can access great features like uploading saves to the cloud and whatnot - it's so you can continue to play the games that are sitting on the hard drive.

Just think, about a year ago I was hopeful about a new console generation. I was thinking that games would look better, feel better, and more effectively immerse the player in their worlds. But apparently no one thinks about the games any more.

Anyway, my laptop's getting a bit old. Maybe it's time to invest in a gaming PC.

I too envision a world where the burrito trees grow lush and spicy.

OT: I'm okay with the cloud as a concept and many of the other futurist things that the Xbone half-assedly represents (since HDCP is more of a medieval concept) but it's the fact that it's been set up completely at the corporations whims that grates me more. I'm glad to see that the market seems to agree that the Xbone is a bridge not just too far, but a bridge on Mars. Sad thing is the 360 almost tempted me back into console gaming but, if MS insists, PC gaming master race for me it is.

RikuoAmero:
In all the furor over the XBone, no-one has yet to comment on a similar service that already exists, one that ties your games to the console manufacturer's continued existence. Namely, Playstation Network Plus. If you subscribe to that, you get a myriad of premium features (why auto-updating firmware is a premium feature, I don't know, that should be standard), but to get back to the topic, they either discounted certain games or give them to you for free. However, those games can only be played as long as you are a paid subscriber. Should your subscription end, or the Sony server datacenter is bombed out of existence, you lose the ability to play them, just like what the XBone is threatening to do. Suddenly, subscribing to PSN+ isn't so that you, the customer, can access great features like uploading saves to the cloud and whatnot - it's so you can continue to play the games that are sitting on the hard drive.

Whilst this is true, PS+ is entirely optional. My PS3 has been connected to the internet about 3 times in the 4 years I've owned it.

RikuoAmero:
In all the furor over the XBone, no-one has yet to comment on a similar service that already exists, one that ties your games to the console manufacturer's continued existence. Namely, Playstation Network Plus. (snip)

I'm not familiar with PSN+, but going by your description, I think the big difference would be that PSN+ is optional. You get a lot of bonuses for paying for it, but it's not the only way to play PS3 games. (I'm guessing that the discounts they offer are for games also available through normal channels? Feel free to correct me if I'm wrong on that.) Even with a lapsed subscription, a gamer can go buy games on disc and still play them. With the new Xbox, that option disappears. Even the purchased games are tied to the online service. And that's a scary thought.

The "no developer money on resales" argument is a valid one, I think. And developers desperately need to get the money they rightfully deserve for the products they create. My concern, though, is just like Bob said: this is redefining the concept of "ownership". And what I'm not certain on is why videogames, especially, are the product for which centuries of ownership and resale concepts need to be thrown out. Used cars have been resold since they were invented; houses too, for as long as humans have been building them. I'm not clear why certain forms of computer software are so drastically different that the whole system needs to be rebuilt. After all, as long as we've had commercial software available for purchase, they've been resold. I'm not sure why we have to change now.

I'm not sure what to think about someone complaining about entertainment being turned from a product into a service. The very notion of video-entertainment being a product (something you can buy and keep forever) is only about 30 years old. Plays, movies, and television were scheduled events that you planned around and savored. Books and records have existed for a while, but those are still much cheaper to produce (especially now) than a video performance.

Those action figures he talked about were valuable precisely because kids COULDN'T purchase the entertainment on an ongoing basis. If you can buy the DVD set and watch it over and over, why would you need an action figure or doll that you have to move yourself. Professional TV writers obviously have much better imaginations than kids so we should be happy to pay for the enhanced experience </hyperbole>.

From an archival perspective, sure, it's risky having the continued existence of a work be dependent on the solvency of its creators (even though that work will certainly be sold on as an asset in bankruptcy). But having those works be continually available to everyone cheapens them. Whether "cheapens" means "horay! more people can see this great and worthy thing" or "this will take up space on your shelf for years even though you got bored and quit in the first hour" is a question I'll let the media (social and otherwise) sort out for me.

Chaos999:
I completely agree with you.

The only thing you didn't go into was the Kinect and the data they can have on us. And even if they wouldn't misuse them (Who's goanna believe that). What happens when hackers get them?

And in the end when you look at the Kinect and know what they doing. It feels very creepy.

It doesn't help that the new Kinect looks like Hal9000. "I can't let you do that Dave, you haven't connected me to the console."

Xbox really have lost the next console war before it's even started. Now it's just a matter of waiting to see what the PS4 is like. And it's a safe bet that the WiiU will get some more games as a result of this.

Sabrestar:

RikuoAmero:
In all the furor over the XBone, no-one has yet to comment on a similar service that already exists, one that ties your games to the console manufacturer's continued existence. Namely, Playstation Network Plus. (snip)

I'm not familiar with PSN+, but going by your description, I think the big difference would be that PSN+ is optional. You get a lot of bonuses for paying for it, but it's not the only way to play PS3 games. (I'm guessing that the discounts they offer are for games also available through normal channels? Feel free to correct me if I'm wrong on that.) Even with a lapsed subscription, a gamer can go buy games on disc and still play them. With the new Xbox, that option disappears. Even the purchased games are tied to the online service. And that's a scary thought.

The "no developer money on resales" argument is a valid one, I think. And developers desperately need to get the money they rightfully deserve for the products they create. My concern, though, is just like Bob said: this is redefining the concept of "ownership". And what I'm not certain on is why videogames, especially, are the product for which centuries of ownership and resale concepts need to be thrown out. Used cars have been resold since they were invented; houses too, for as long as humans have been building them. I'm not clear why certain forms of computer software are so drastically different that the whole system needs to be rebuilt. After all, as long as we've had commercial software available for purchase, they've been resold. I'm not sure why we have to change now.

Yes, the games on PSN+ can be obtained elsewhere and yes, PSN+ is optional, but I consider it to be the prototype as it were for the XBone's system. Someone who signs up for + will be all gleeful to see all the new things they can do...but wait until six months down the line, a year. They boot up their console, browse to the game, and a big error message is plastered all over the screen. A comparison to Steam can sorta be made, but one doesn't need to pay for a subscription to Steam to still be able to play games they were given for free. I got the original Portal for free when Valve offered it for free a while back. With PSN+, I'm basically obligated to continue paying, not because it adds any value or I get something great in return, but so that my games aren't being held hostage.
And then along comes the XBone, which is even worse. It's not optional, and I resent the fact that Microsoft thinks it deserves a cut of the second hand market, despite doing nothing at all to earn it. If Microsoft ran some sort of Ebay-esque system on the XBone, one that is optional but far easier to use than having to get in the car, waste gas and go to a physical store to trade in your games, then fine, that would be great. But no. Microsoft is lord and master. Hell, this to me smacks of illegal price-fixing, since I've heard they're going to set a minimum and maximum price for second hand games.

The thing that resonates with me most about this is the fact that while I like streaming services and the like, I too have not stopped collecting physical media. Even still, physical media is becoming more restrictive, too.

Izanagi009:
Well, if it is true that the concept of ownership is being turned from product to service with permission, then gamers are screwed since Microsoft is probably going to have cloud issues and take out everyone's games.

Which is pretty much the underlying point.

Screw this, I'm not going to stand for Microsoft's business practices! I'm going to get a gaming PC! *buys a Windows PC* This was their plan all along.

Everything I recieved from PSN+ (for the 3 months I recieved it for free) I still have full access to. So I guess I can't really comment on it being like the new XBox fiasco.

But my biggest concern is even though Microsoft seems to be doing everything wrong, I just know once the next Halo (or insert whatever other big title here) comes out the system itself will be selling well. Most buyers don't care about "facts" and are only concerned with getting their "fix."

RikuoAmero:

Yes, the games on PSN+ can be obtained elsewhere and yes, PSN+ is optional, but I consider it to be the prototype as it were for the XBone's system. Someone who signs up for + will be all gleeful to see all the new things they can do...but wait until six months down the line, a year. They boot up their console, browse to the game, and a big error message is plastered all over the screen. A comparison to Steam can sorta be made, but one doesn't need to pay for a subscription to Steam to still be able to play games they were given for free. I got the original Portal for free when Valve offered it for free a while back. With PSN+, I'm basically obligated to continue paying, not because it adds any value or I get something great in return, but so that my games aren't being held hostage.

Honestly, I look at PS+ as sort of a rental system. I get to try out a bunch of games I wouldn't otherwise have tried. If I like it and want it after my free year ends, I'll probably just buy it. But in the meanwhile, I've learned about a few games I like and a lot I thought I'd like but don't. Plus, I get discounted titles that don't go away because I purchased them.

I'd also go so far as to speculate that a lot of people won't be playing these games in a year or two anyways. Games are disposable to a large portion of the population, so fifty bucks for a bunch of free titles with a limited shelf life probably isn't that big a problem.

Now, is PS+ a prototype for XBone? I'd say Gold was the prototype for both, and at worst Plus is a mid-stage. XBone also seems to borrow from Steam, but in no positive way I can glean. There's a lot that has nothing to do with Plus here, and most of that seems to be the worst elements. Cancer may develop from once-healthy cells, but that doesn't make the host a cancer.

For all the outrage on Xbox One games being "services, not products", there is very little when it comes to Steam, a retailer that has been selling "services" that exist only at the whim of a single company for the past few years. Most will say that the reason Steam gets very little backlash is because games on Steam are often put on sale for a fraction of their MSRPs.

Which means that the issue really has less to do with "services vs products" but rather price. It seems that consumers don't mind buying games whose functionality are tied to a single company so long as the price is right. But who's to say that the pricing model of the next generation will follow that of the current generation (in which nearly every retail game is $60, and every digital game is $10-20)?

zelda2fanboy:
Screw this, I'm not going to stand for Microsoft's business practices! I'm going to get a gaming PC! *buys a Windows PC* This was their plan all along.

Yeah, kind of ironic how the only way they "lose" is if someone buys a wii or a ps4. On the other hand Windows 8 is doing about as poorly as this new console is going to do: the last pole I've seen shows that 25% of PC users still use windows XP and close to 70% are using windows 7. The rest are using a mix of linux, OSX, and Windows 8. So less than 5% of users are making use of Windows 8.

New Troll:
Everything I recieved from PSN+ (for the 3 months I recieved it for free) I still have full access to. So I guess I can't really comment on it being like the new XBox fiasco.

But my biggest concern is even though Microsoft seems to be doing everything wrong, I just know once the next Halo (or insert whatever other big title here) comes out the system itself will be selling well. Most buyers don't care about "facts" and are only concerned with getting their "fix."

Really? You can fire up your PS3 right now, and you're not now a subscriber, but you can still play those games? Because going from
Q: What happens to the games and DLC I downloaded from through a PS Plus membership, and I decide to not renew my membership?
A: You will not be able to access free games downloaded with Plus if you choose not to renew your membership. However, if you decide to re-activate your membership, you will once again be able to play all games downloaded from the Instant Game Collection.

https://support.us.playstation.com/app/answers/detail/a_id/2034

It says that anything you get for free you are unable to access once your subscription ends. And yes, this does mean I made a slight mistake - I was wrong earlier when I said that discounted (not free) games were locked once your subscription lapsed. When you got PSN+ for free, was that in response to the hacking incident and the games you're talking about the ones they gave for free (I myself got Wipeout HD and Infamous 1). If so, those games aren't considered part of PSN+.

crackfool:
For all the outrage on Xbox One games being "services, not products", there is very little when it comes to Steam, a retailer that has been selling "services" that exist only at the whim of a single company for the past few years. Most will say that the reason Steam gets very little backlash is because games on Steam are often put on sale for a fraction of their MSRPs.

Which means that the issue really has less to do with "services vs products" but rather price. It seems that consumers don't mind buying games whose functionality are tied to a single company so long as the price is right. But who's to say that the pricing model of the next generation will follow that of the current generation (in which nearly every retail game is $60, and every digital game is $10-20)?

One point; when Steam can't connect to the internet, you can still play all your games just fine. From all indications given by Microsoft thus far, with the Xbone if you can't connect to the internet once a day your console bricks itself until you can, preventing you from playing any games. This key point is the difference, at least for me.

Hmm. Interesting points about the loss of Ownership. Unfortunately it seems that only the older generations (ie: Gen X and older) actually have this as a general point of view; younger generations seem to be (in general) fairly OK with the idea of not needing to physically own something to be able to use it.

Can you imagine how boned Microsoft would be if some clever, evil, hackerish-thingie-whateverthey'recallingthemselvestoday-guy got into the XBox servers and simply went "Delete - All" to all the user information that the XBox servers had? All the downloads, all the XBox Live ID's, all of that, on main and all backup servers? Didn't steal anything, just deleted it all?

"Fuck you. What's mine is mine."

-Walter Sobchak.

I would say I agree, but they are only going to a model that Steam has championed for many years already. They've proved that it can work, and work wonderfully.

The real determining factor: how RELIABLE is it? If there was a server issue, would it have a Steam-esque "Offline Mode"? Doubt it.

Captcha: it is different
I don't think so captcha, not really...

RikuoAmero:

Yes, the games on PSN+ can be obtained elsewhere and yes, PSN+ is optional, but I consider it to be the prototype as it were for the XBone's system. Someone who signs up for + will be all gleeful to see all the new things they can do...but wait until six months down the line, a year. They boot up their console, browse to the game, and a big error message is plastered all over the screen. A comparison to Steam can sorta be made, but one doesn't need to pay for a subscription to Steam to still be able to play games they were given for free. I got the original Portal for free when Valve offered it for free a while back. With PSN+, I'm basically obligated to continue paying, not because it adds any value or I get something great in return, but so that my games aren't being held hostage.
And then along comes the XBone, which is even worse. It's not optional, and I resent the fact that Microsoft thinks it deserves a cut of the second hand market, despite doing nothing at all to earn it. If Microsoft ran some sort of Ebay-esque system on the XBone, one that is optional but far easier to use than having to get in the car, waste gas and go to a physical store to trade in your games, then fine, that would be great. But no. Microsoft is lord and master. Hell, this to me smacks of illegal price-fixing, since I've heard they're going to set a minimum and maximum price for second hand games.

One doesn't need to pay to access steam, but one still pays for steam games (albeit, not that much, considering there's a term coined 'steam sale' these days). I hope that's not forgotten. What I also hope is not forgotten is that you buy PS+ for a duration of time. If your goal getting PS+ is the full game downloads they offer (it should be; the other services like cloud saving and background updates, game and system are nice, but not worth the ~4$/month it takes for PS+). You have ample time to play through games that you have not been able to pick up or find on your own, and new games are thrown at you around every month (it can actually increase your library so fast, that it gets in the way of playing disc-based games). If you're not interested in the games out, cut sub, and wait for a month where a game is interesting. My last comment as Sony's spokesman on PS+ is that it definitely isn't a collector's service; its a situation that gets you past putting in your credit card for games you'd like to download and PLAY (which I thought was the main point, could be wrong) but at a subscription cost. I find PS+ to be one of the more balanced subscription models; completely optional, you pay a sub fee, you get full access to games (of Sony's choosing) for the duration of your subscription (which, if you try, can at least story-complete one game given in the sub's time).

Bravo, excellent article. I wonder what kind of bloodshed would be required to apply their kind of article to other media like movies.

crackfool:
For all the outrage on Xbox One games being "services, not products", there is very little when it comes to Steam, a retailer that has been selling "services" that exist only at the whim of a single company for the past few years. Most will say that the reason Steam gets very little backlash is because games on Steam are often put on sale for a fraction of their MSRPs.

Which means that the issue really has less to do with "services vs products" but rather price. It seems that consumers don't mind buying games whose functionality are tied to a single company so long as the price is right. But who's to say that the pricing model of the next generation will follow that of the current generation (in which nearly every retail game is $60, and every digital game is $10-20)?

There's also the fact that Microsoft has a reputation as being greedy, powerful and downright evil at times. Steam doesn't have a negative reputation, so people are more likely to trust Steam than Microsoft.

Regarding the cost of digital downloaded games, I don't see that happening for new releases for quite a while. Just look at how much e-books cost; right now on Amazon.ca, Dan Brown's latest book is $15.00 for the HARDCOVER, while the Kindle edition is... $15.99. Now, yes, the Hardcover is on an Amazon sale (down from $30), but why is the Kindle version $15.99 at all? I'll look at his "Lost Symbol" book. Discounted paperback: $10.79. Kindle: 9.99. This is pretty much how things are for ebooks, and are pretty much exactly the same for games; your point about digital games being cheaper than physical games is... not exactly accurate. Buy Bioshock: Infinite? $59.99 for a disc on Amazon.ca, $59.99 for download on Steam right now. Skyrim is $30 on Amazon.ca and $30 on Steam. Mass Effect is actually cheaper to buy a disc on Amazon.ca (under $10 in some cases) than on Steam ($20). For some games it may be true, but there are glaring examples that I'm looking at right now (2pm EST, May 24 2013) that entirely negate your point.

And if Microsoft and Sony both try to move to a primarily digital distribution, why would the price of games drop? If you can only get them from digital distributors, there's no incentive to drop the price to woo customers.

(Hrm. I think I'll see if there's a thread biatching about the high cost of digital media compared to physical media, and revive if necessary just to get my rant about that out in a place that won't actively derail another thread)

But the gumption with which Microsoft has embraced the re-definition of the media itself, the Orwellian wordscape wherein the term "product" is subsumed by "service" and consumers are granted "permission" rather than "ownership," that development chills me to my bone.

Ever played an MMO Bob? Ever? I suspect you might've tried one or at least heard the lamentation of people who have.
This is nothing new and the fact that you're surprised only now, is chilling to me. I say that because while I disagree with a lot of what you say, you're undeniably a capable and intelligent individual who I assume doesn't get screwed over easily.

We haven't owned our games for years and the companies are steadily seizing everything they can, so they have to give as little a fuck about consumers as possible.

Windows 8 is by the way the first step in making sure that we don't even own our PC's or what's on them. Win8 is not horribly restrictive, yet, but if it's any indication along with the reveal of xbone of what's to come, then we'll soon enter a Big Brother society when it comes to our computers, consoles and smartphones.

iOS fx is very restrictive and very harsh on its users(I'm an iphone owner and I'm on my third model) if you want to do anything that's beyond Apples rules. Intrusive Game Center, apps that can't be deleted and that damn Magazine Stand that you can't even put in a folder. They're tiny issues, but they're so massively infuriating, because you've bought a very powerful ~$750 phone(more like $1000 in my country) and you're basicly powerless when it comes to the content.

Please note the point isn't how Apple conducts its business, it's about the way that ALL companies are now screwing us over because they've realized that they can exploit the vague definition of ownership when it comes to hard and software.

And no one gives a shit. Even when people do give a shit, such as when ACTA was a thing, people protested in the streets here in DK and nothing was done about it; Our country still voted for it. Now we have TPP to worry about and a dozen other under the table deals that companies have written and are feeding our governments.

I'm half expecting to see a flaming pitchfork mob walk by any day now, but I know it wont happen, because we've been fed so much crap over such a long period, that people won't do anything as a whole to prevent it and certainly not to stop anything ongoing.

Stock up on razorblades, because the Orwellian society is well underway :)

I completely related to the feeling of wanting to own a physical copy of something. When I first started watching My Little Pony, I posted on this website that I wished Hasbro would release them on DVD. Someone pointed out that all the episodes were available on YouTube for free, and I said that I just liked the idea of owning the videos personally. The same thing goes with all my games and books. Sure, I can get nearly every Star Wars book in e-reader format (if I had a nook or whatever), but the feeling of staring at my bookcase and seeing over two decades worth of Star Wars books that I've read is something that a computer file just can't capture.
As for games, I bought TNMT off of the PSN once, but my old PS3 crashed. When I got a new one, I forgot to download TMNT again, and now it's off the store. Meaning I'm out ten dollars forever. So yeah, I completely understand the dread that Bob is feeling from Xbox One.
I'm still having trouble actually believing any of this. I can't fathom how Microsoft thought any of this was a good idea, but who knows. Maybe sales will prove them right, although I can't see how.

RikuoAmero:

Sabrestar:

RikuoAmero:
In all the furor over the XBone, no-one has yet to comment on a similar service that already exists, one that ties your games to the console manufacturer's continued existence. Namely, Playstation Network Plus. (snip)

I'm not familiar with PSN+, but going by your description, I think the big difference would be that PSN+ is optional. You get a lot of bonuses for paying for it, but it's not the only way to play PS3 games. (I'm guessing that the discounts they offer are for games also available through normal channels? Feel free to correct me if I'm wrong on that.) Even with a lapsed subscription, a gamer can go buy games on disc and still play them. With the new Xbox, that option disappears. Even the purchased games are tied to the online service. And that's a scary thought.

The "no developer money on resales" argument is a valid one, I think. And developers desperately need to get the money they rightfully deserve for the products they create. My concern, though, is just like Bob said: this is redefining the concept of "ownership". And what I'm not certain on is why videogames, especially, are the product for which centuries of ownership and resale concepts need to be thrown out. Used cars have been resold since they were invented; houses too, for as long as humans have been building them. I'm not clear why certain forms of computer software are so drastically different that the whole system needs to be rebuilt. After all, as long as we've had commercial software available for purchase, they've been resold. I'm not sure why we have to change now.

Yes, the games on PSN+ can be obtained elsewhere and yes, PSN+ is optional, but I consider it to be the prototype as it were for the XBone's system. Someone who signs up for + will be all gleeful to see all the new things they can do...but wait until six months down the line, a year. They boot up their console, browse to the game, and a big error message is plastered all over the screen. A comparison to Steam can sorta be made, but one doesn't need to pay for a subscription to Steam to still be able to play games they were given for free. I got the original Portal for free when Valve offered it for free a while back. With PSN+, I'm basically obligated to continue paying, not because it adds any value or I get something great in return, but so that my games aren't being held hostage.
And then along comes the XBone, which is even worse. It's not optional, and I resent the fact that Microsoft thinks it deserves a cut of the second hand market, despite doing nothing at all to earn it. If Microsoft ran some sort of Ebay-esque system on the XBone, one that is optional but far easier to use than having to get in the car, waste gas and go to a physical store to trade in your games, then fine, that would be great. But no. Microsoft is lord and master. Hell, this to me smacks of illegal price-fixing, since I've heard they're going to set a minimum and maximum price for second hand games.

The difference is cost for content. PS+ is very much the "you don't own anything" digital system we all fear, but they've gone to a free game per week (assuming you own both PS3 and a vita) so in all honesty, I lose things that come down to a buck a game even without the other features (I only signed up for the cloud saving) if it goes under. When you get so much for so little, you kind of are willing to put up with the larger risk, and since it's just the free content held hostage, you always have the option to actually pay for it if you let your subscription lapse. Implement the same setup for full priced games and suddenly you become very worried that the large amount of money you've sunk into things could find its way into whatever limbo lost digital data goes. It's one thing to say I don't own it if I pay next to nothing for it. It's another if I pay full price.

themilo504:
My biggest fear is that one day steam will disappear, taking away most of my game collection

The difference is that you can always play your games offline when Steam has issues (which is extremely rare), while, if Steam goes under, you can safely expect them to allow you to backup your collection. And even in the off chance that they don't, it is extremely easy to crack the Steam DRM and backup your stuff. Also, if you buy cleverly off Steam, you can get your games very cheap. I've only been using it for purchases in the last year and a half and I own about 150 games, ALL of which were bought for under 15$ on sale or included in other bundles.

That's why I can justify putting up with "cloud ownership" in Steam's case, because they frequently have many excellent games on sale and they are not being huge dicks about their authentication process or their online requirement. It's as subtle as possible.

Now, Microsoft ain't gonna do that. If you expect to see 6 month old AAA titles at 50% off on Microsoft's store, you can keep on dreaming. Also, with their mandatory once-a-day sign in nonsense, their limitations on ownership, their always functioning Kinect sensor for no reason, their indie extermination plan and their overall greed and downright offensive fuckfacery, I feel that they've pushed people so far off the edge that the edge has practically disappeared and people are floating in midair. I don't want this console in my house. I just simply don't. The only version of Xbone that I'd buy would be a 50$ bricked hacked version, where the Kinect has been forcefully removed with a pair of rusty pliers.

I would love the irony if at the end of this next console phase all the actual gamers have moved back to pcs.

I don't know, this Xbox doesn't seem to have a lot to do with gaming, but maybe it works? I personally hardly play any modern games anymore, maybe a shift back to gaming's core audience is just what gaming needs.

Here's the thing that I think will prevent such a thing from happening:

1) 'hardcore' gamers are still a substantial customer support base to the gaming industry, whether the gaming industry likes it or not. Sure, we may be a smaller support base, but we spend (by far) more money on gaming; and 'hardcore' gamers read websites like these, understand changes in the industry and will not stand to allow such a change to happen.

The fact that Xbox One has had a substantial backlash in terms of its obscured information upon used games and tying games onto a single console has attracted even mainstream media attention is tantamount to the fact that we still have a significant say in what goes on in the industry.

If Xbox One fails because of its DRM-like features, or it loses a significant portion of the 'hardcore' gaming base to Sony/Nintendo (or perhaps even Valve/Ouya?) it'll have a substantial impact on the way the industry is run.

2) People generally know when they're being screwed over. I think even 'regular' customers of gaming will be able to tell that "hold on a second, why the hell do I have to pay for this second hand game?". Ultimately, even if corporations implement this to try and tie in customers to a specific brand, I don't think it'll work. One game has weird ways of trying to get more cash from you? Get a different game. One console has a weird way of making you pay for stuff? Buy a different console. Simple.

Because gaming is, fundamentally, a luxury item, people won't stand for companies trying to make 'necessary payments' out of customers, because gaming itself isn't 'necessary' at all. I think thats something 'regular' customers, as well as 'hardcore' customers, understand.

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