Xbox's Phil Spencer: Games With Gold "Different" Than PS+

Xbox's Phil Spencer: Games With Gold "Different" Than PS+

Phil Spencer 1

Microsoft Game Studios corporate vice president Phil Spencer also claims Games With Gold will feel "more true" to what he thinks it should be with the "constraints that are there" in the future.

While Microsoft's "Games With Gold" is similar to Sony's PlayStation Plus in that they both offer two "free" games each month, Microsoft's iteration has been chided since it usually offered games a couple of years old compared to Sony's more current slate of games available in its premium service. Speaking during a Q&A session following his SXSW panel, Microsoft Game Studios corporate vice president Phil Spencer states that Games With Gold is "fundamentally different" from PS+ since you get to keep the game even if your subscription expires.

One of our issues with Games with Gold - not 'issues,' but differences between the other system we get compared to, is the fact that with Games with Gold, you get to keep that game, regardless of whether you continue to subscribe...And the business around Games with Gold, for us, is just fundamentally different from some of the other programs that are out there, which does put a different financial picture on a - you're gonna go buy a game that's brand new, the cost of putting that in, just to be kind of blunt about it

While the exec isn't in charge of the Xbox's Games With Gold program, he reveals he's been working with the team on a more regular basis following its launch and has been playing a more active role in picking the games that appear in the initiative. Spencer also adds it will be "more true" to what he thinks it should be with "the constraints that are there."

That said, I have been sitting down, monthly now, with that team - some of the earlier months were already programmed - and playing a more active role in picking franchises that show up in Games with Gold, and I think you'll see at least something that feels, at least, more true to what I think Games with Gold should look like with the constraints that are there.

For reference, Games With Gold's offerings for March are Sid Meier's Civilization Revolution and Dungeon Defenders, while PlayStation Plus has Tomb Raider, Thomas Was Alone and Lone Survivor: Director's Cut for PS3, Unit 13 and Monster Hunter: Freedom Unite on the PS Vita, and Dead Nation: Apocalypse Edition for the PS4. To date, Games With Gold is still not available for the Xbox One -- a fact that I hope gets remedied soon.

Which platform do you prefer? Games With Gold where you keep the games even if your membership lapses, or PS+ that offers newer games but necessitates that you remain a member to play them?

Source: Polygon

Permalink

If someone doesn't even play the free games I doubt they'd care if they lost them or not. PS+ is still the better service thanks to covering multiple devices.

So for the xbox, you just need to try to download the game once while under Gold membership and then you basically own the game. Download it again whenever you want. I make it a point to download every single game and just own it. I almost never play any of them for more than an hour.

But for the Playstation, do you have the ability to play all the free games whenever you want? Or is it a seasonal thing that is for a limited time? Or is the download free for a limited time and then you can download it again not matter if it is in season or not?

What I've noticed is that the PS+ offers not only newer games, but more importantly better games. Like I said, I haven't really played any of the Xbox360 games.

It's a shame they did start this whole games with gold thing allot sooner.

I have been a xlive gold since the first day I got my first 360 (which was pretty much at release), and I've not really gotten anything out of this short run of games with gold so far (ether due to me already owning the games they give out, or disinterest in them).

And now as of April 1st my gold expires and I will not be renewing it, since my 360 has not seen any action this year.

So games with gold was completely pointless to me.

Hopefully sometime in future when I decide it's time to get a PS4, PS+ will be be more useful.

Colt47:
If someone doesn't even play the free games I doubt they'd care if they lost them or not. PS+ is still the better service thanks to covering multiple devices.

Yep, this is a big factor for me, honestly. Also, seeing as the PS4 needs PS+ for online play, that means I'm constantly subscribed. Even if it wasn't, I prefer newer games, but that's just my own preference. :)

UsefulPlayer 1:
But for the Playstation, do you have the ability to play all the free games whenever you want? Or is it a seasonal thing that is for a limited time? Or is the download free for a limited time and then you can download it again not matter if it is in season or not?

You can play them whenever you want, provided you're still paying for PS+

I think once a game is made free it stays so forever, but you can only add a certain amount of games to your collection once a month or something.

PS+ all the way. It's like comparing apples to rotten garbage, in my view.

UsefulPlayer 1:
So for the xbox, you just need to try to download the game once while under Gold membership and then you basically own the game. Download it again whenever you want. I make it a point to download every single game and just own it. I almost never play any of them for more than an hour.

But for the Playstation, do you have the ability to play all the free games whenever you want? Or is it a seasonal thing that is for a limited time? Or is the download free for a limited time and then you can download it again not matter if it is in season or not?

What I've noticed is that the PS+ offers not only newer games, but more importantly better games. Like I said, I haven't really played any of the Xbox360 games.

As long as you downloaded the games and continue to subscribe to PS+ (which by the way also offers discounts on the Store, early access to some games, and more) you can always play them. Deleted it from your system and it's no longer available for free? Just go to your Downloads list and download it again for no charge. The games are tied to your account to, so if you change out your system, you still have it. This is on top of it being a crossplatform service that serves PS3, PS4, and Vita.

The only limitation is that you have to remain subscribed to PS+. Not much of a problem.

As for the discounts, in December, I got the PS3 version of FFXIV: A Realm Reborn for $10 and it includes the PS4 upgrade for free.

Well first off, both services are required for online play now, except for PS3, so whether the game is no longer playable kinda becomes irrelevant for almost all "Premium" users. Either you're an online gamer and you'll be paying the subscription anyway in order to play online or you're an offline player and it's a decent guess that a month of playing a game is more than enough time to be done with it in 95% of the cases.

Secondly of course, newer/better games are simply a better deal than older games. Especially following the above argument.

captcha: Enter the following: "word for word". Meta :P

UsefulPlayer 1:
So for the xbox, you just need to try to download the game once while under Gold membership and then you basically own the game. Download it again whenever you want. I make it a point to download every single game and just own it. I almost never play any of them for more than an hour.

But for the Playstation, do you have the ability to play all the free games whenever you want? Or is it a seasonal thing that is for a limited time? Or is the download free for a limited time and then you can download it again not matter if it is in season or not?

What I've noticed is that the PS+ offers not only newer games, but more importantly better games. Like I said, I haven't really played any of the Xbox360 games.

you can download the games whenever you want as long as you add them to your download queue so for instance if sleeping dogs was added to the program and you didn't add it to your download queue and it lapsed and was replaced with something else you cant get it but if you did add it to your queue and even if you didn't download or play it you can still download it again as long as you have ps+ even if the game is no longer offered.

it seems like a bizzare argument since someone who has a console is likely going to have membership to play online anyway so all the "games" are basically owned anyway

I dislike the idea that if my membership lapses, my games die. But if it stays at $50 a year, that's dirt cheap. I can live with it.

I wonder if PS4 will make you have PS+ and buy the game new and have a code for it? I had to get Battlefield 3 new to get the code for multiplayer, which I wanted. So the game cost me $40 new rather than $20 used. If no, that $50 a year is all the better for it.

So far, Outlast for PS4 is a hoot. That zombie shooter, not so much. I deleted Resogun as I think it possibly a controller killer. Tomb raider has a few potentially analogue stick killing moments, but not enough to make me regret downloading it.

I have 2 PS3s, a PS4 and a Vita. I can download the same games to either PS3 as long as I'm using the same account. Once downloaded, I'm pretty certain I can play them using any account on the system. So, I can be playing Metro Last Light in one room while my son plays the same game in the other.

Amazon ripped me off sending me a Vita Bundle that was supposed to include Uncharted but did not. With PS+, I have it anyway. Now I only worry we're unlikely to see anything so amazing as that game for a long time if ever again. They're doing a lot of PS2 and PSP ports that are not, IMHO, up to snuff with what this system can do.

I had gold for 6 years that I owned a 360. Never, ever, ever got a free game with it.

I get what they're trying to do, and in a way theoretically it is sort of the better service, but

[360 has] Sid Meier's Civilization Revolution and Dungeon Defenders, while PlayStation Plus has Tomb Raider, Thomas Was Alone and Lone Survivor: Director's Cut for PS3, Unit 13 and Monster Hunter: Freedom Unite on the PS Vita, and Dead Nation: Apocalypse Edition for the PS4.

I would rather play a good game once than have a game I'm not interested in that I can keep forever. Sony are smashing them on game selection

I also do recall that PS+ does occasionally discount games to $0, which can be kept even after the membership lapses.

Also PS+ gets you discounts and further discounts on regular discounted games.

And as a subscriber who had one and then didn't and then got one again, the free games that I had previously hit download on were still all available for re-download as soon as I was subscribed again (and this was a gap of about 7-8 months).

PS+ is better for me, I mean... Tomb Raider vs. dungeon defenders?

"Which platform do you prefer?"

PC gaming since I don't have to pay a monthly fee just to be able to play games against other humans or to use apps. I know the monthly fee for something like gold level membership isn't huge, but it's the principal of attempting to force you to pay to get your full money's worth out of a game that just pisses me off to the money grab.

Ashley Blalock:
I know the monthly fee for something like gold level membership isn't huge, but it's the principal of attempting to force you to pay to get your full money's worth out of a game that just pisses me off to the money grab.

That's what happens when you push so much for expensive hardware in a vain attempt to compete with PC graphics. Forces you to sell your console at a loss and makes you create bullshit services like these just to get enough money out of customers, all while still having hardware inferior to most PCs.

I find it rather amazing that console developers have gotten away with charging for something which has been free for years on the PC.

I guess, it's true what they say about a fool and money.

The Lunatic:
I find it rather amazing that console developers have gotten away with charging for something which has been free for years on the PC.

I guess, it's true what they say about a fool and money.

It isn't free on the PC. They just put most of the responsibility on the users to create their own dedicated servers for online stuff.

Where as, on the consoles, an entire fleet of servers has to be maintained for a very specific purpose with millions of users wanting a streamlined online experience (regulated, controlled, online games with no hassle or server settings).

I signed up for PS+ a bit over a year ago. The service is really great and the game selection has pretty much always had something I wanted to play (new) every month. Real games I would have actually paid money for. In addition, it has given discounts on other games ...enough that just from the discounts I would have paid for the subscription price.

Xbox gold....is a joke. The only thing you really get from it, is games that would be almost free anyway if you got em out of the bargain bins. I mean, ok, by the time Tomb Raider came out on PS+....it was on sale a few times for around $10 or so on steam. I didn't pick it up, but I could have. Basically you don't get BRAND new games from ps+ usually, but you get games that are still relevant and that you might have picked up eventually.

In the end, there is really no comparison. For now, Xbox mainly charges you just for online access, Sony charges a tiny fee for a bunch of great games every month, and the ability to basically get all of that for free still if you do buy any games and use the discounts.

I paid, happily, for Ps+ for well over a year...without it being required for online access. I never paid for xbox gold even though it is required for it.

Course to me, sony just has more games I'd actually be interested in anyway. My 360 was mainly used for a few games like too human.....and left to gather dust most of the time anyway.

"Subscribe to get free bargain bin games, but at least we let you keep them if you unsubscribe."

I'll stick with PS+.

Alpha Maeko:
It isn't free on the PC. They just put most of the responsibility on the users to create their own dedicated servers for online stuff.

Where as, on the consoles, an entire fleet of servers has to be maintained for a very specific purpose with millions of users wanting a streamlined online experience (regulated, controlled, online games with no hassle or server settings).

Nope, not quite.

Majority of console games are "Listening Servers" or "Peer to Peer".

"Listening Servers" puts the burden of "Hosting" a game on one specific player. This is found in Games like CoD or Halo, basically, this is why you get "Host Migration" when a specific person leaves.

"Peer to Peer" is a type of networking in which in player connects to another, in sorta a daisy chain.

Either way, beyond the store and profile data, there's extremely little hosted by Microsoft or Sony.

And even then, that which is game related and hosted on a server tends to be managed by the company which made the game.

This is why Capcom can shut down servers for specific games, likewise with other companies.

Although, please note, I may have got some of this wrong, I don't know the exact details of all the networking that goes on, but, this is a basic gist of what happens.

Alex Co:

For reference, Games With Gold's offerings for March are Sid Meier's Civilization Revolution and Dungeon Defenders, while PlayStation Plus has Tomb Raider, Thomas Was Alone and Lone Survivor: Director's Cut for PS3, Unit 13 and Monster Hunter: Freedom Unite on the PS Vita, and Dead Nation: Apocalypse Edition for the PS4. To date, Games With Gold is still not available for the Xbox One -- a fact that I hope gets remedied soon.

Im a gold subscriber, still a ps+ virgin...and this right here pisses all over MS's pathetic sparkler fireworks.
Sooooooo the real question is...why even bother coming out with this statement? No one likes you anymore, microsoft. Go home before you embarrass yourself further!

So far PS+ has been giving away good games and Xbox Gold has been giving away shit games. That's the difference Phil. Civ Rev is pretty good but it came out in like 2007.

OK, make up your mind Microsoft. Is it all about the games or not? Because if it's all about the games, then PS+ wins so hard you should be in tears. $50 a year is NOTHING for the quality of stuff that you get.

Gorfias:

I wonder if PS4 will make you have PS+ and buy the game new and have a code for it? I had to get Battlefield 3 new to get the code for multiplayer, which I wanted. So the game cost me $40 new rather than $20 used. If no, that $50 a year is all the better for it.

Um, I think that might be a glitch. Because when I downloaded BF3 with PS+, I had full access to the multiplayer.

I've been with PS+ ever since it became available in Europe. I have so many games right now I can't even count them all, and each month more great new games are being added. And even if I don't play a game I still "buy" it, which means it is mine forever, as long as I have a PS+ subscription. I have games for my PS3, PSVita, /and/ PS4.
Should I let my subscription run out and then join up again later, I get access to all games I already had back, as well as any new stuff.

Yeah I'll take that over some bargain bin games on a single platform only. XBox: Pay More, Get Less.

Alex Co:
Xbox's Phil Spencer: Games With Gold "Different" Than PS+
For reference, Games With Gold's offerings for March are Sid Meier's Civilization Revolution and Dungeon Defenders, while PlayStation Plus has Tomb Raider, Thomas Was Alone and Lone Survivor: Director's Cut for PS3
Permalink

And there is the bigger problem with Games With Gold: they're not really good games. PS3's side of PS Plus has already offered 2 games from the GOTY 2013 rosters (including Bioshock Infinite). Meanwhile, Games With Gold just offers games that aren't very good nor well-known. The last game on GWG that was well-known was Dead Island in early February, and the last game that was both very good and well-known was Sleeping Dogs in early January.

what they need to do is offer 360 games on games for gold for the Xbone. Think about it how many people would download mass effect one, fable, and halo if they were all released for download just to have some games to play on the XBone.

They're totally different - it's got GOLD in the name so you know it's better! And it's got all this wibbly wobbly superior stuff.

The Lunatic:

Alpha Maeko:
It isn't free on the PC. They just put most of the responsibility on the users to create their own dedicated servers for online stuff.

Where as, on the consoles, an entire fleet of servers has to be maintained for a very specific purpose with millions of users wanting a streamlined online experience (regulated, controlled, online games with no hassle or server settings).

Nope, not quite.

Majority of console games are "Listening Servers" or "Peer to Peer".

"Listening Servers" puts the burden of "Hosting" a game on one specific player. This is found in Games like CoD or Halo, basically, this is why you get "Host Migration" when a specific person leaves.

"Peer to Peer" is a type of networking in which in player connects to another, in sorta a daisy chain.

Either way, beyond the store and profile data, there's extremely little hosted by Microsoft or Sony.

And even then, that which is game related and hosted on a server tends to be managed by the company which made the game.

This is why Capcom can shut down servers for specific games, likewise with other companies.

Although, please note, I may have got some of this wrong, I don't know the exact details of all the networking that goes on, but, this is a basic gist of what happens.

Yeah, you're probably right.

I must have been subconsciously thinking of Microsoft's plans for the "power of the cloud" where allot of background calculations are offered to developers.

Colt47:
If someone doesn't even play the free games I doubt they'd care if they lost them or not. PS+ is still the better service thanks to covering multiple devices.

Not only the covering multiple devices, but how many of us play a game once or twice maybe and then never touch it again? I know I do, and PS+ has been a great way to experience some of these games that I haven't bought and would only play once while spending about as much as the cost of a single game to do it. Hard to argue with that.

Getting to keep crappy old games isn't a feature Microsoft.

oldtaku:
They're totally different - it's got GOLD in the name so you know it's better! And it's got all this wibbly wobbly superior stuff.

Normally you'd be right in this, but you're forgetting that the PS+ logo is golden which means PS+ should really be called gold+ which means it's gold with a boost.

Honestly I have no experience with Games With Gold so I can't really say anything on the matter. I love PS+ though.

Genocidicles:

UsefulPlayer 1:
But for the Playstation, do you have the ability to play all the free games whenever you want? Or is it a seasonal thing that is for a limited time? Or is the download free for a limited time and then you can download it again not matter if it is in season or not?

I think once a game is made free it stays so forever, but you can only add a certain amount of games to your collection once a month or something.

Not true, as far as I can tell.

It's more a matter of PS+ changing its lineup every month; you'll only have the ability to 'purchase for free' so many titles anyway, in the span of one month.

But yea, as long as a game is in your 'download list', you can download it at any point you want to; if you got it free with PS+, however, your PS+ will have to be active for you to play it. So, should you can take a break on the subscriptions, you won't be able to play the games on that break, but when you come back, all the games previously downloaded can be played again EDIT:(I did this for a while; only picking up 3-month PS+ when I saw an interesting game for free). Games bought with money, of course, you can download at any time, whether PS+ was active or not.

Ipsen:

Genocidicles:

UsefulPlayer 1:
But for the Playstation, do you have the ability to play all the free games whenever you want? Or is it a seasonal thing that is for a limited time? Or is the download free for a limited time and then you can download it again not matter if it is in season or not?

I think once a game is made free it stays so forever, but you can only add a certain amount of games to your collection once a month or something.

Not true, as far as I can tell.

It's more a matter of PS+ changing its lineup every month; you'll only have the ability to 'purchase for free' so many titles anyway, in the span of one month.

But yea, as long as a game is in your 'download list', you can download it at any point you want to; if you got it free with PS+, however, your PS+ will have to be active for you to play it. So, should you can take a break on the subscriptions, you won't be able to play the games on that break, but when you come back, all the games previously downloaded can be played again EDIT:(I did this for a while; only picking up 3-month PS+ when I saw an interesting game for free). Games bought with money, of course, you can download at any time, whether PS+ was active or not.

Ps+ has a collection of games available. Every month new games are added to the collection and some are removed. So you only have a period of time to "buy" a game for $0. You don't even need to download it though. Once a game is "bought" its added to your download list. You can then download it any time, even after its no longer in the ps+ collection, so long as you are a current ps+ member when you try to download it. One of the less elegant design of ps+ is that there is no way to view your personal ps+ library except scrolling through your download list.

Korten12:

Gorfias:

I wonder if PS4 will make you have PS+ and buy the game new and have a code for it? I had to get Battlefield 3 new to get the code for multiplayer, which I wanted. So the game cost me $40 new rather than $20 used. If no, that $50 a year is all the better for it.

Um, I think that might be a glitch. Because when I downloaded BF3 with PS+, I had full access to the multiplayer.

Good to know. Makes me think that in the future, they will not demand you have a code to play a particular game even if you bought something that is supposed to make it so you can play multiplayer.

Of course the games are different. PS+ gives you games you want to keep, but cant. Xbox Gold Gives you games that you can keep but wish you couldnt.

 

Reply to Thread

Log in or Register to Comment
Have an account? Login below:
With Facebook:Login With Facebook
or
Username:  
Password:  
  
Not registered? To sign up for an account with The Escapist:
Register With Facebook
Register With Facebook
or
Register for a free account here