Xbox One Release: Tons Of Questions, Very Few Answers

from the confused dept

Unless, like me, you are looking at the release dates for the next generation of gaming consoles the way a starving hyena watches an approaching gazelle that’s been eating nothing but butter for weeks, perhaps you’re not up on all the information coming about regarding Microsoft’s next console. Actually, as I’ll discuss in a moment, even if you are paying constant attention, you probably still don’t know a whole lot for sure. See, after months and months of speculation on possible features of the next Xbox, Microsoft stupidly decided to not firmly address any of that speculation at the release event for the Xbox One. The most troublesome in terms of bad press have been rumors about online connection requirements and how used games would be handled. I say press, but perhaps I should rather say non-mainstream press, because it’s really been the smaller blogs and citizen journalists that have produced a roundly negative buzz for the Xbox One.

You would think that in a negative and uncertain climate that’s been brewing for the past several months, Microsoft would use the official release press event as a way to clear all of this up. Good answers or bad answers, it’s important that the public and the press have a firm understanding on what to expect out of the console. Aren’t we constantly told that uncertainty is four letter word in economics and business? That’s why it’s so curious that Microsoft appears to have provided very little in the way of answers and what answers it has chosen to supply have been both contradictory and confusing.

So, let’s take the two issues in order. First up is rumors about online requirements.

It turns out that the detail we were murkiest about was the one Microsoft themselves are the murkiest about. The official Microsoft party line on the day the company revealed the Xbox One: “It does not have to be always connected, but Xbox One does require a connection to the Internet.”

Welcome back. I say that because I assume you just spent the past fifteen minutes rereading that last sentence over and over again trying to figure out what the hell it means. As it turns out, the key word is “always.” The Xbox One will require an internet connection at certain points, but it won’t need to constantly be connected to function. So, what are those certain points? Well, nobody, including Microsoft, seems to know, which is strange of them to admit since it’s their nun-punching freaking product. Microsoft executive Phil Harrison told Kotaku that he “believes” a connection is required once every 24 hours. Oh, and possibly one is needed in order to play a new game for the first time. Also when you first use the console. The lack of finality in these answers is astounding, particularly coming from a Microsoft executive giving interviews at the release event. Imagine going to your local auto show and having a Ford Motor VP telling you how wonderful their new car is, but can’t firmly answer any questions about its motor or how many miles-per-gallon it gets?

And with the question of used games, we do no better. Harrison told one reporter:

“We will have a system where you can take that digital content and trade a previously played game at a retail store. We’re not announcing the details of that today, but we will have announced in due course.”

Then told another:

“We will have a solution—we’re not talking about it today—for you to be able to trade your previously-played games online.”

What you immediately notice is not only the lack of any specifics to one of the major questions hanging over the console like a set of rain clouds, but even these two non-answers are different. The first talks about used games being traded at retail stores, while the second seems to mention trading games online. That’d be a huge development if true, with some kind of Microsoft online trading platform threatening GameStop and other used game retailers. Speaking of which, reports are already surfacing that Microsoft is requiring agreements limited to select retailers to actually be able to buy and sell used games. If those reports are accurate, trading games will only be possible through those select retailers and the game publisher and Microsoft will take a massive cut of the transaction, leaving retailers with very little margin. The end results of this setup will be higher prices for used games and the inability for gamers to trade games with one another.

Still, as bad as that would be, Microsoft hasn’t even officially confirmed that program either. Between that uncertainty and that of online connection requirements, it’s no wonder the general public hasn’t been keen on the Xbox One release yet. There is a market, sadly, for the kind of walled gardens and restrictive requirements discussed above. Apple’s mobile devices prove that. But where Apple officially and boisterously owns those concepts, Microsoft’s opaque stance on these questions can only mute any release buzz for their new console. It’s high time the company got everyone on message.

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Comments on “Xbox One Release: Tons Of Questions, Very Few Answers”

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Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re:

Clearly you’re not really understanding here…

The switch to AMD from Nvidia GPU had little to do with compatibility – it was the switch from a PowerPC CPU to x86-64 that really causes the problem here.

Not to mention, performance will be substantially better, both CPU and GPU – you clearly don’t understand how it works. It will be almost on part with PS4, which also uses AMD APU, but with a slightly better graphics processor and faster GDDR5 RAM – but the XBox One employs a larger cache, along with cheaper DDR3 RAM giving it a different set of advantages over the PS4. Ultimately, they should be very equal machines with the same underlying architecture.

XBox 360 will be a POS by comparison…

Wally (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:

“The switch to AMD from Nvidia GPU had little to do with compatibility – it was the switch from a PowerPC CPU to x86-64 that really causes the problem here.”

In console gaming, for games…developers develop the game around the specific GPU architecture and thus strictly for what ever GPU is being used The CPU’s Architecture is basically designed for the OS.

Case in point, Halo and Halo 2 for XBox were specifically meant for use with nVidia GPU chipsets in mind…you can play both on the XBox 360 no problem. The XBox used an X86 CPU from Intel…The XBox360 uses the IBM PowerPC 950 architecture.

Wally (profile) says:

Re: Re:

The processor is the same IBM, but the GPU is AMD. Both previous generations used an nVidia. The original xBox used a specialized version of the GeForce3 GPU chipset and the CPU was from Intel I think…the XBox360 used PowerArchitecture but due to the nVidia GPU, it was capable of playing some older xBox Titles. The CPU architectures only control the actual interface of the consoles.

The XBox One is a very very bad thing because of the 8GB of GDDR3 RAM…which is much slower and far less efficient than the WiiU’s use of esRAM…XBox One only reserves 3GB for gaming…that’s including software and graphics in that 3GB space…given the average game will likely use 2GB of RAM just to run the software from the hard disk, that’s 1GB for graphics. This means that not only is it running off of Graphics RAM technology from roughly 4 or 5 years ago, it’s also means that in order to keep the efficiency and smooth gameplay, they have to keep the games natively at 720p .. The left over 5 GB of GDDR3 RAM is strictly for you to run the OS.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

But as he had metioned….. that the previous two generations did not require ported software or to be recompiled and the CPU architecture did not matter because the ORIGINAL XBox ran off of x86 and the XBox 360 used PowerPC950…like he said the ORIGINAL XBOX and XBOX360 GPU’s are practically derived from the rather portable nVidia GPU ARCHITECTURE….and since the GPU ARCHITECTURE is the same between those two (With some XBox games still playable on the XBox360 without any special porting or emulation as evidence). So yeah, he wasn’t talking about the XBox One’s x86 CPU, he was pointing out that the reason some XBox games had compatibility with the XBox360 without modification was because they relied on the GPU parts of the console rather than the CPU in them.

M$ changed to an AMD GPU as well as an AMD x86 processor…the original XBox also used an x86 CPU that was made by intel.

Have fun rebuying your games fanboy.

Lurker Keith says:

Re: Re: Re:

The XBox One is a very very bad thing because of the 8GB of GDDR3 RAM…which is much slower and far less efficient than the WiiU’s use of esRAM…XBox One only reserves 3GB for gaming…that’s including software and graphics in that 3GB space…given the average game will likely use 2GB of RAM just to run the software from the hard disk, that’s 1GB for graphics. This means that not only is it running off of Graphics RAM technology from roughly 4 or 5 years ago, it’s also means that in order to keep the efficiency and smooth gameplay, they have to keep the games natively at 720p .. The left over 5 GB of GDDR3 RAM is strictly for you to run the OS.

That, to me, sounds like Microsoft handing Nintendo a massive gift. With all the restrictions, the used game mess, & the uncertainty*, once Nintendo starts giving the Wii U proper game support (or the next Zelda launches), it might actually be a proper Console War after all.

*We also need to keep in mind Micro$ucks patent for what’s now called “Visual DRM”, which could be in use w/ the Xbox One’s Kinect 2.

Dirk Belligerent (profile) says:

Re: Re: Hi, I'm Wally and I know NOTHING!!!

Sony really needs to hire better trolls because even with the sketchy incomplete info we have on BOTH consoles, there is so much wrong in Wally’s vomiting on his keyboard, it’s pathetic.

FACT: Only the OG Xbox used an nVidia GPU. In fact, the whole chipset was developed by nVidia and was the basis of the Forceware motherboards which were so good because they could encode Dolby Digital internally and feed it via TOSlink to a receiver. Nice.

FACT: The XBone and PS4 will have DX11-complient GPUs with more RAM for graphics than their predecessors meaning Wally’s lie about the graphics being the same is a lie from a liar. Or a moron. His pick.

FACT: The Xbox 360 used an ATi (now AMD) GPU. The Playstation 3 used an nVidia chip. Both the PS4 and XBone will use AMD GPUs because nVidia doesn’t like being lowballed on parts – they had to sue M$ to get paid for the Xbox parts they delivered – and are concentrating on mobile.

FACT: The reason backwards compatibility is a problem is that both the PS4 and XBone are x86 architectures whereas the PS3 had the hard-to-code-for-only-good-on-paper Cell processor and X360 was a tri-core PowerPC chip. It’s the same reason old OS X software made for pre-Intel Macs stopped working after Lion was because Apple stripped out the Rosetta emulation layer. The only reason the OG PS3s were BC was because Sony physically soldered a PS2 Emotion chip in to handle BC, which is why used “fat” PS3s command a higher price than new Slims. PS4s are BC with old games either, but the Sony shills are trying to make people forget that little fact.

FACT: The talking about about DDR3 being too slow is technical illiteracy and marketing BS in action. “Sony has DDR5 which is two more DDRs than LameBox. Sony wins! Derpa herp derp!” DDR5 has more bandwidth, but poor latency. The layman’s explanation is that DDR5 is like a few burly guys unloading bricks in bulky loads while DDR3 is like a bunch of little guys grabbing two bricks each in a hurry. Specs are just marketing BS for trolls like Wally. The Cell processor was supposed to deliver better graphics and AI and did neither.

FACT: Wally Wrongo has the memory allocations totally backwards, not that facts matter to fanboys. The XBone has 5GB set aside for games and 3GB for system management. I don’t agree with their not using all 8GB for games, but M$ wants people to be able to instantly switch to watch TV, TV, TVTVTVTVTVTVTV. Whatever. Wally’s still wrong.

FACT: Wrong Wally is wrong and Sony needs better/smarter/faster fanboys.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re:

the xbox 360 has no nvidia chip at all. it uses an IBM Power PC derived in-order triple core CPU with 2 threads per core and an ATI GPU derived from the x1600/x1800 series.

The only xbox that ever had an nvidia chip was the first one which had a pentium 3 derived CPU and a nvidia geforce 3 based GPU

the only “next gen” console with an nvidia chip was the PS3 with a geforce 7800 derived GPU.

The Real Michael says:

Re: Re:

“That being said, Microsoft totally sold me a PS4 with that mess of a reveal.”

If Xbox One requires digital registration and a fee in order to play used games, PS4 will as well. No way would something like this be exclusive to only one platform, otherwise users could circumvent the process simply by buying software on the competitor’s console.

anonymouse says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

I think we need to put the blame for all of this where it belongs, at the developers doorstep. They have the power to destroy Microsoft by the biggest of them refusing to release content, but they are probably the ones who have demanded Microsoft and Sony find ways to help them generate more profit. Greed is a terrible thing and has destroyed many a console in years gone by. Although there are many real hardcore gamers out there, the market is predominantly full of casual gamers and when they flee the sinking ship the console cannot justify it’s existence.

I predict a new console from Microsoft in the next two years that will play 360 games and hopefully remove any restrictions on you owning your purchased games.

PolyPusher (profile) says:

Re: Re:

  1. It does not have the same graphics capablities. It is an 8 core CPU that is also x86/64 compatible. The graphics chip is capable of 1.2 teraflops. A dramatic difference when compared to the 360. 8 gb of ram vs. 512 mb. It is a significant improvement in performance…
  2. Nvidia never made processors CPU’s for game consoles. They make graphics processors “GPU’s,” The switch from Nvidia to AMD is not the reason for the lack of backwards compatibility. Switching to the x86/64 architecture is the reason and considering that the PS4 is based on x86/64 this will actually benefit game development significantly. What this also means is that you should just go for a gaming PC as games will be easier and cleaner to port to PC now.
  3. Activation fees are for used games not new games. The retailer pays this fee so your used games will be more expensive but it is not pay for game, then pay activation as you say. I too think it is lame, however it is important to be accurate.

    Planning my next PC build now… ๐Ÿ˜‰

Jbwallace82 says:

Re: Response to: Wally on May 24th, 2013 @ 7:04pm

It has better graphic capabilities than the xbox 360. You really think Microsoft is bold enough to come out with a new xbox and not make it better and try to compete with Sony. There is no way in Hell they would make it the same graphic
capability as the 360 because they know it would fail and if you watched the press release of it than you would know it has better capability. They discuss the new call of duty game and why they are able to make it a better looking game.

Anonymous Coward says:

Why in the world would anyone buy one of these?

Given that their track record — to date — consists entirely of “screw the customers as badly as possible”, why would any consumer even consider purchasing one?

It’s just a game. It’s not like it’s something important. Why sign up for that level of pain and frustration?

@Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Why in the world would anyone buy one of these?

Xbox has done me very well over the years. I have had my Xbox fixed by the company twice, but that was years ago and it works just fine. I bought a newer slim model and the power supply fan stopped working. Xbox replaced it with no problem. Yes, each time I was without my Xbox for roughly a week, but they gave me a month of Live each time and I got a lot of stuff done around the house. (I’m starting to wonder if my wife is breaking it on purpose.)

There are people in the world that just like to be negative, but there’s not too much of anything out there that’s not going to have a problem from time to time. It’s just a machine/computer. Things happen. It’s not reason to bash the system. They’re in it to make money. If you don’t like it then don’t buy one. Definitely don’t visit the site about the new one just so you can complain. It’s pathetic.

I’ll bet you’re a COD fan.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Why in the world would anyone buy one of these?

“Xbox has done me very well over the years. I have had my Xbox fixed by the company twice”

This is acceptable to you? In my 30+ years of gaming I’ve NEVER had to have a console “fixed”, but then I never bought an Xbox either. This was mostly unheard of until the Xbox came along. With the Xbox it seems to be a normal thing.

My 35 year old Atari 2600 still works as good today as the day I got it, though I did have to replace the joysticks a while back.

Wally (profile) says:

Re: Re:

“Its completely arrogant and just crazy. Good thing it seems like its going to bite them in the market.”

Not just arrogant and crazy….but very similar to the “updates” to the Windows platform that led to Windows 8…Steve Balmer (please excuse the spelling of that name)is trying to fix what isn’t broke. Instead of upgrading the hardware and interface, he chaged the hardware, kept the interface…and kept it incompatible with the previous generation regardless of the fact that the thing still shares the same performance level as the xBox360. Meanwhile over at Nintendo…we still have a system that plays our Wii and VC games…both of which in 1080p mode…. All WiiU games thus far have been natively rendered at 1080p….

As for the second part of your comment….You’re right… :-)I don’t see Nintendo getting all huffed up about used game sales…do you??

Lurker Keith says:

Re: Re:

I’m surprised WHY this should be reported on Techdirt wasn’t mentioned. I, sent them a URL & questioned if Microsoft trying to cutoff or control Used Games, or even control where you can play it, might violate the First Sale Doctrine.

I think this was the URL:

I was never going to get a Xbox branded system, Xbox One just proves my choice right.

Capitalist Lion Tamer (profile) says:

Don’t forget the possibly always-on camera and microphone pointed in the user’s direction that’s required equipment with the new Xbox. The fact that Microsoft has a patent laying around that would allow it to charge admission to movie-watching houseguests is just icing on the fucked up cake.

Call me a fanboy, but I’ll be saving my pennies for a shiny new PSWhatever and granting Sony the privilege of occasionally bending me over for some unpleasant surprise “loving” or severe data breach.

On second thought, I’ll just take advantage of the upcoming price breaks on last gen and stock up on a couple of PS3s and run them into the ground. (Which may take awhile, as mine spends about 90% of the time running Netflix, rather than games…)

Wally (profile) says:

Re: Re:

“Call me a fanboy, but I’ll be saving my pennies for a shiny new PSWhatever and granting Sony the privilege of occasionally bending me over for some unpleasant surprise “loving” or severe data breach.”

You can upgrade your old PS3 with a 1TB SATA 3.0 hard drive for about a tenth of the price…and keep your data after you get a PS4…and you can also hack it to the point of emulating SNES games.

Wally (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

Not saying the PS3 is where it’s at…but you can buy the cheap ones used and go from there…PC’s are capable of emulating the SNES, it’s just a bit more effort to hook up your PC to your TV via HDMI…not because of the connections, but because of the weight and size of the darn box you would want to play the games on.

Wally (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:3 Re:

Thanks ๐Ÿ™‚ I have a BluRay Player for home theater purposes and it does connect to my YouTube and NetFlix accounts.

When I initially hooked up my SNES to the HDTV via s-video, it seemed a bit pixilated and blury compared to having it on a CRT so using a heavier gaming PC for the complex Algorithms (and due to ventilation purposes) involved in scaling the SNES image on an emulator… is easier to just use a standard desktop…or a Hacked PS3.

Rekrul says:

Re: Re:

Don’t forget the possibly always-on camera and microphone pointed in the user’s direction that’s required equipment with the new Xbox.

I can’t wait until the cameras start getting hacked and videos of people’s private moments start showing up on the net.

Not that that will convince the public at large that having a game console with a built in spycam is a bad idea, unfortunately.

DannyB (profile) says:

Re: Re:

You beat me to it. I was going to point that out.
* Device is always connected to utility power
* Device is always connected to the internet
* Device has camera or multiple cameras pointed at user, capable of recognizing gestures that might be interesting
* Device has array of microphones to make it possible to triangulate the origin of particular voices

Wow, that certainly doesn’t have any potential for abuse.

It’s a good thing that we can trust Microsoft to always abide by the highest moral and ethical standards. Not only that, but you can rest assured that the Xbox will have the kind of trustworthiness and security that you have come to expect from the Microsoft brand name.

What could possibly go wrong? Nobody could ever hack into a game company’s servers. That would be without precedent.

PeterScott (profile) says:

There can be no question that what Microsoft means by “enabling” used game sales, means controlling it completely to their benefit. They are only taking more time to tweak the exact terms and work on their spin.

But you won’t simply be able to swap with friends or other normal things back when you actually owned games and they worked on any console.

The have killed that and hopefully they pay a price in lower sales.

Wally (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

I’m not sure Nintendo is really stupid enough to do that to its fans. The Nintendo fan base is by far the nerdiest (saying that with pride) and most demanding (and most dangerous to fuck in policy from the corporate level) quality because we expect all aspects of quality from them. This includes customer service.

So what are people not attracted to in a console?

1. Requirement of always online to play single player…Nintedon’t
2. Activation fees for games you already paid $60 for…Nintendon’t
3. Paying a monthly fee for services only related to the console and your online gameplay…Nintendon’t.
4. Does not allow you to play games you owned from the previous generation…Nintendon’t

Sony and M$ are currently doing exactly what Nintendon’t.

The Real Michael says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Re:

There’s nothing to prevent them from going in that direction in the future. Remember, they’re a corporate entity with a vested interest in profits and control. Nintendo’s heavy-handed policies and absurd royalty costs on cart manufacturing drove many developers away from their platforms after the SNES’ reign ended. The only software that manages to sell on Nintendo consoles is their own franchises and Dragon Quest. Small wonder that third-party support for the Wii U consists of shovelware and ports of current-gen softs.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:3 Re:

The only real reason the cartridge concept failed in the n64 was the restricting amount of space provided. The n64 was actually a much more powerful system and was capable of using Z-buffering to prevent texture and polygon popping. The cartridge only held 64 Megabytes (512 megabits) so the CPU was stuck compressing and decompressing files on the fly…which is why there was a frame rate drop at times.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:5 Re:

True, that may be, but the the only reason for the use of CD’s was for more cinematic FMV content. I am not saying either is superior in game libraries, nor am I saying that the cart system was better. The cartridge’s only limitation was the technology at that time. The N64 was a more capable system than the PS1 in graphics (z-buffer…antialiasing…RAM expansion port…) and had flash technology at the time been more cost affective (as the N64 cart held only 64MB) the outcome of that system would have been far greater in content..It was not just hubris, but limits in cost affective technology.

out_of_the_blue says:

"Aren't we constantly told that uncertainty is four letter word in economics and business?"

No, we’re not. No one has ever heard any such thing.

Were I able, I’d edit out that and about half the rest of your text as unnecessary at best, starting with the unique notion of herbivorous gazelles eating nothing but butter. That just about stalled me out, but I’m plucky and kept going.

Timmy, I try to not read your pieces because of verbiage*, not because of topic or any other reason. You’re often like reading “Engrish” ( ), either a hoot or baffling, in that your word combinations just about CAN’T occur to one immersed in the language from birth. It’s not something to be proud of.

You’re welcome to the attention; I know you appreciate anyone at all taking the time to read your… oh, let’s just say output.

(*Look that up as I just did and you should find that adding “excessive” is redundant, so I removed it.)

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: I'm done

Sadly, not all Wii models can play Gamecube games…

Do yourself a favor, start buying up used consoles and games at yard sales (this is what I do), that way you’ll forever be able to play the retro games you loved, and tell these companies to fuck off when they release newer, more restrictive consoles and games every generation.

I invest in “new” used games every month or so for a few dollars and it keeps my kids satisfied.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re: I'm done

I’m old enough that I grew up during the birth of the home game console and got many as they came out, but filled in the gaps buying up used consoles and games, like you, when I got older. I’m done though now. I’d rather break out my NES and play some Tecmo Super Bowl than deal with all this crap nowadays.

Nick (profile) says:

I… honestly can’t understand any of the decisions they made so far regarding this console. Focusing so much on a rehashed shooter series that needs to stop for a few years, a focus on sports games that I can’t imagine can do more than just be roster and graphics improvements year-to-year, and now all this.

They are bowing to the publishers who – for the last 20 years – only in the last 3 years suddenly find used game sales an unsustainable business. How about, if you make a game that is worth keeping for more than the 5 hours you make the game last, people will KEEP the game longer than 5 hours? Instead, they are trying their damndest to kill the used game market like they did in the PC market (RIP used PC games).

Then the non-upgradable hard drive, which was a feature the freaking PS2 had. It’d be a SHAME if people didn’t buy your arbitrarily overpriced “official” high speed add-on USB drives, wouldn’t it? Just like with the 360, which you stupidly decided to make as a baseline have NO hard-drive, so developers had to develop expecting one not to be installed.

And now we have the Kinect. An always-on, always watching and listening camera and microphone with the same company which has patents for figuring out the number of people in a room and charging an account based on the number of viewers. It can’t possibly go bad. Must make it mandatory. Nobody could possibly NOT want to participate in motion controls or voice activation, huh.

And while we’re at it, why are we so insistent on so much control over the devices WE purchase? Why do you insist on having the product phone home every damned day? You are treating every customer as if they are a dirty pirate in order to stop the 1% who actually are (console security was pretty good last generation, most didn’t bother), and it won’t even stop them! Instead, since the infrastructure in our country is still a joke, what with near monopolies in many cities, it is possible to not have internet. What’s worse, you can not have internet after having NOT turned on your console on for 3 days. Maybe you just got back from vacation. Turn it on, no internet. Well, since you didn’t phone home for 2 days, you must be a DIRTY PIRATE, NO VIDEO GAMES FOR YOU!

Console about to check in, and you disconnect it to take to your brother’s LAN party across town? Don’t bother to hook it up to his internet, just LANing them together is hard enough? well TOUGH YOU DIRTY PIRATE! NO HALO FOR YOU! DON’T YOU KNOW THAT SUDDENLY HAVING TO NEED MORE PORTS ON A ROUTER IS PROOF THAT YOU ARE A PIRATE?

*sighs* And the sad part about all of this? Is that my mother is actually interested in this. All she heard was a local news channel report about it talking about the cool gestures and hand waving about controlling your TV and cable box. Which I guess is EXACTLY who Microsoft cares about now. Not us gamers, but our mothers and fathers.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Dont like it?? DONT BUY IT

Geez you would think that was a hard decision for you!

if you do choose to buy it you have chosen to buy it under their terms of sale, like everything you buy.

They have every right to manufacture and sell whatever they feel will make the most profit, and sell lots of units.

They are not putting products on the market to cater for pirates or people “lending games”, if they want to sell products that do not support old games, that is their right, but at least it exists and if you want to use what you get, then buy it, if you don’t, don’t buy it.

But bitching about it being “not exactly what you want it to be” is just puerile blather.

Nick (profile) says:

Re: Re: Dont like it?? DONT BUY IT

I know, but if I don’t let my feelings known then a lost sale is just a lost sale and they don’t know if it’s because of the recession, betrayal (PS4), apathy, or outright disgust over their choices.

And honestly, it disgusts me that as people – even people of a corporation – will make such anti consumer choices in their products. That none of their designers would ever stopped and just asked themselves for any of these if it was even necessary.

Yeah, some of my earlier rants may have been a little petty, such as the non-upgradable hard drive, but that shouldn’t even be an issue. I understand you can expand with USB drives, but external will always be slower than internal, not to mention splits storage amongst two places (will I have enough to install to my internal? nope, now to put it on my external). But with advances in technology, why is this even an issue. We should be advancing forwards. Microsoft broke ground by introducing a hard drive in their first Xbox console. Then to take a step backwards by not having it standard in the 360 was… astonishing. And it’s still not upgradable.

My choice on whether to buy this console (and I’ve bought a lot of them in the past) will be simple: leave in such anti-rental, anti-lending, always-on, always-Kinected decisions… and I simply won’t buy it.

Wally (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Dont like it?? DONT BUY IT

So tell me…when authors on Techdirt gripe that an entire niche of the video game market is declining due to some asshole trying to curb piracy by making selling a used game cost prohibitive…even though the discs they store games on are made to make it nigh impossible to back up or copy them…that they are somehow shilling or advocating piracy?

Here’s the GODDMNED scoop ace…the reason why most of these games on the previous generation were so successful is that people could trade in their games, that they have finished, for others to enjoy. When you take away the ability to do that through a cost prohibitive fee, you are basically killing your own success. Not only does word not spread so quickly about how awesome the game is, but the used game market makes it more affordable to enjoy games.

Just Another Gamer says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Dont like it?? DONT BUY IT

I recently counted the number of Xbox 360 games I own and in total there were 87. The majority of them are either used purchases or new plucked from the bargain bin. As I’ve said here in the past, I generally won’t pay more than $20 for a game unless it’s something truly worthwhile. Walmart had a boatload of games in their bargain bin when I was there yesterday and I spent over $200 on a stack of them, bringing my collection to nearly 100 titles (I had already raided my local Futureshop recently).

I actually own two Xbox 360’s, an original and an elite. I bought the elite because the original broke down (RRoD) shortly after the warranty expired. Eventually I got around to opening the original and all I had to do was glue a magnet back in place. Good thing too because the elite broke down shortly after it’s warranty expired (non-fixable junk). Before that I was an avid PC gamer and own several hundred titles for it, all purchased legitimately (I’ve built six PC’s to date fwiw). Over my entire history of PC gaming, I’ve only ever owned two or three “pirated” titles (one was given as a birthday present and it didn’t work lol).

So there is my history as a gamer. I can honestly say that I do not like where the gaming industry is currently headed, particularly Microsoft with their Xbox One which will force a whole new set of restrictions on us. I was looking forward to the gaming experience superior hardware was going to provide (greater realism for example, I’m into CG) but not at the expense of my privacy and ability to do what I want with a game. It’s like Adobe with their creative cloud crap. They want to have consumers gripped firmly by the balls in order to squeeze every penny they possibly can out of them.

Thankfully we do all have a choice, as has been pointed out. I’m going to stick with my Xbox 360 for as long as I can, maybe buy a used PS3 down the road so I can play all the titles that only came out for it, then probably go back to PC gaming until that is no longer an option either. Then if things are truly bad with no hope at this point, I’ll cease to be a gamer and look elsewhere to spend my money, as I’m sure many others will. If anything, all of this will more than likely make a video game pirate out of me. I like supporting developers, especially the good ones, but there is a limit to my willingness for putting up with the kind of crap those greedy suits keep dreaming up.

So when the PS4 and XB1 arrive, I’ll thoroughly examine the capabilities and limitations of each, then make a decision based on the outcome. I’m actually kind of surprised the PS4 won’t be able to play PS3 games seeing as that is the kind of thing that would make an Xbox user jump ship, especially if Sony shows they have more sense than Microsoft as they have in the past. The XB1 won’t run 360 games either, so there is really no reason to stick with them. If both are bad, perhaps the PC gaming market will improve or some fourth party will launch their own console, one aimed at meeting users expectations rather than stomping on them. This could actually end up being the perfect time to break into the console market.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:3 Dont like it?? DONT BUY IT

I buy most of my games at retail, because I only get games I really want that generally have some replay value. I preorder and pick them up the day they come out. The only way Microsoft is going to lose my money is if they make their console too annoying to use, with little benefit over the current gen consoles. And it sounds like that’s exactly where they’re headed.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:3 Dont like it?? DONT BUY IT

Don’t forget about the WiiU ๐Ÿ˜‰ Nintendo doesn’t pull that shit on its customers ๐Ÿ˜‰ They even include the HDMI cable out of the box on all editions of the console. They loose $8 to $25 per console purchase because they want us to see that the machine is totally capable.

S. T. Stone says:

Re: Re:

When you think about it, Microsoft DOES care about mothers and fathers because they still generally believe in the concept of an ?Entertainment Altar? ? the all-in-one entertainment center situated in the living room where everyone goes to watch TV/play videogames/etc.

Gamasutra had a wonderful column about this:

What worries me the most ? aside from the always-on-but-not-always-on issue and the potential for Microsoft to use Kinect as a goddamned spying device to further its own ends ? is the idea of ?you don?t own your things any more?. The Xone won?t allow you to play used games without paying a fee (and you could pay one potentially as high as the purchase price of the game itself), easily modify the hardware (so you can?t upgrade the hard drive), or even play the console WITHOUT an actual Internet connection (as Microsoft has made a point of all-but-confirming). Microsoft will essentially own your entire Xone experience while you pay for the license to enjoy it.

I?ll stick with emulation of old games, Flash games, and Let?s Plays of current games for my gaming experience. At least I know I own my goddamned PC.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:

This is a disturbing trend on many technological fronts. Adobe is now moving to a subscription model, where you won’t own any software. It’s all in the cloud. You pay an enormous subscription fee so you can use all of their software – as soon as you stop paying, you lose access to everything. It’s a completely ridiculous model for those of us that only use one or two of their products, which I assume is most people.

Nick (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: subscription models suck

Indeed. In a time where a lot of CURRENT video game subscription models are discovering that F2P is more profitable than subscription, we’re finding that one-time purchase programs such as Adobe and Office are experimenting (I hope) with subscriptions. It seems they are stuck 10 years behind the video game market. Perhaps in 10 years we will see a F2U (free to use) approach to office programs, where you get the base program and just buy at small prices the parts you use.

That’s actually not too bad an idea… Hmm, I may fire off an email to Microsoft right now.

Nick (profile) says:

Re: Re:

Yeah, those were all a part of my original rant, all summed up as the fact that we are just losing ownership of our own products we are buying.

I’d like to point to PCs as a bastion of freedom, but then I realize that my gaming library is still locked down to an account irrevocably tied to a single company. If they were to go out of business or to feel that I broke some arbitrary rule, I could lose well over thousands of dollars worth of video games, all because it is controlled online, electronically.

Ronald says:

Re: Re:

sighs And the sad part about all of this? Is that my mother is actually interested in this. All she heard was a local news channel report about it talking about the cool gestures and hand waving about controlling your TV and cable box. Which I guess is EXACTLY who Microsoft cares about now. Not us gamers, but our mothers and fathers.”

It’s no longer about the children. ๐Ÿ™‚

Anonymous Coward says:

There’s no question about the Xbone: Doggy Woofare

Here’s all you need to know

-It will spy on you
-You won’t be able to make it stop
-You won’t be able to play used games
-You won’t be able to lend games out
-You won’t be able to disconnect it from the internet for too long
-You won’t be able to swap internal hard drives
-You won’t be able to play 360 games

But ignore all that, Look at the monkey! Look at the silly monkey!


Anonymous Coward says:

“Aren’t we constantly told that uncertainty is four letter word in economics and business?”

yes, that is quite stupid, when you consider that uncertainty is the DRIVING FORCE for the economy and business.

But Tim thinks he can give advice to the most successful software company mankind has ever seen, it’s not perfect but I am sure they know a lot more about business and markets that Tim will EVER know.

It’s really simple, if you don’t like their products or the company DONT BUY THEIR PRODUCTS !!!!

Clear many people do like them, and happily purchase their products and services.

Anonymous Coward says:

Harbingerofdoom mentions the solution I’ve already come to about consoles. With this release is there any wonder why pirates have a better model? Comes out right after if not before the official release and doesn’t have the requirement of on line spying as part of it. I’ll not regret missing out on the buying of this new Xbox product.

You want it, fine go for it. It’s just it’s not going to be my money supporting this.

silverscarcat says:

Re: Re:

As my friend, GH points out…

And this is some strong language, but bear with me.

It isn’t here because as much as the ‘PC master race’ likes to stroke itself, the real winner in the end is the goddamn smartphone. Let’s be honest once and for all, the smartphone market is outselling, all by itself, PC AND consoles combined, isn’t losing steam in the slightest, and is bringing in enormous profits for little effort for devs and publishers.

In the end, the tiny little piece of shit phones that every hipster twat shows off are the real winner, and the ‘hardcore’ gamers and ‘PC master race’ can just watch and gnash their teeth because for all PCs are more versatile, they lack the sheer selling power that smartphones have.

Smartphones are really ruining everything nowadays…

BigKeithO says:

Re: Re: Re:

But what is the install base of PC’s verses smartphones right now? Sure phones are outselling PC’s right now but what about for the past 10 years or so?

Games on smartphones are not the same as games on PC. The type of game that appeals to people on a PC cannot be replicated on a phone (yet). Smartphones are not about to kill PC gaming any time soon.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re:

Saying anyone is really “Winning” this is stretching it. At the end of the day, quality all across the board has sunk to a new low. Even if you don’t end up buying an XBone, you’ll still end up buying Windows 8, which I would consider to be just as bad of a message to Microsoft as preordering four XBones

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re:

The blessing of the PS3 is that it is currently the most hack-able console and has the ability to have the same power as a super computer at one tenth of the cost of an actual super computer… the US Airforce’s cyber division uses a rack of 64 PS3’s for communications encryption.

Home uses make it a REALLY good SNES and NES emulator box (the controllers feel natural.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:

They don’t anymore, they patched out OtherOS functionality quite some time ago

It’s what GeoHot got in trouble for: He shared the method he used to put Other OS functionality back in the PS3 and Sony came down on him because they’re a bunch of pricks. I’m amazed no one sued Sony for patching out advertised functionality of their system.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

It’s also why I think anyone who gives Sony “What’s a few million account names with credit card numbers lost? We gotta have the names and addresses of every person who visited this guy’s blog” any money just because Microsoft is a shittier company to be a fool. Sony is only currently the lesser of two evils. I believe most of their CEOs should be imprisoned for the shit they pulled not even two years ago.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re:

I own both a 360 and PS3. While there are things to like and dislike about both, 95% of the games today are released on both platforms. In my opinion, the controller of the PS3 is slightly better, although it sounds like Microsoft is working on this.

My point is, if you jump ship to Sony, I doubt you’ll be missing anything.

gorehound (profile) says:

I will never go near one of these XBOX and I mean never.
Want to play Games then build a PC.Stay far away from this XBOX and stay away from Sony as well.Both of these will be Consumer Unfriendly.And this XBOX is looking like it is also a Privacy Issue but I can smell Sony going the same route.Both of these will have DRM Wazoo built into the unit.And MS will have a Camera On always……..and for those who pay attention MS even has a Patent which could scan a living room and count how many people, etc are there.
F-You !
Build a PC
Go on VPN
Bypass DRM by downloading some kind of CRACK
Get to screw around and Tech out……….design and customize your own PC ala Gaming/Living Room Entertainment Center.
No Cameras built in, always on VPN, trying to just have some privacy, and no damn DRM.

Anonymous Coward says:

anyone who is stupid enough to believe that Microsoft will be protecting your freedom and privacy, you need your heads tested! the only thins Microsoft are interested in are profits from sales (second hand as well as new), preventing anyone from owning anything other than the console (all games being downloaded and them having the say/right to allow you to play it where you want. the price, however, is gonna be the same as buying a physical disk. why do you think that when you buy a game disk atm, you have to download gigs of ‘additional content’ before you can play the game? it’s to get you all used to having the whole thing downloaded! why do you think that the fight against ‘piracy’ has been going on so long and to such a degree? it’s because all of the entertainment industries know full well what way the want people to go, that the internet is the best thing since sliced bread and torrent files are going to be the poodles plums of a downloading protocol once the industries get everyone brainwashed into doing what is wanted. atm everything to do with the internet, as far as these industries are concerned, is bad, bad, bad! once they have it under the control of their grubber little, money grabbing hands, there wont be anything to beat it. IT’S ALL ABOUT CONTROL, CONTROL, CONTROL!!!!!! WAKE UP PEOPLE!!!!

John says:

The original topic...

I’m amazed at how much you’re all arguing over the architecture of previous generation consoles when the original article is about the next generation.
I have a PS3, a 360, a pretty decent laptop and an Android. I play games on all of them.

I watced the release of XBone on my 360.
I am disgusted by the way Microsoft has seemingly tossed aside hardcore gamers to cater to an unknown demographic! hardcore gamer with a family, I don’t watch much tv. I work, take care of my wife and kids, and after everyone is in bed, play multiplayer on Halo 4 or something else. I don’t buynew games very often
because I have kids and $60.00 is alot to shell ofut for a plastic disk.
I am incensed at Microsoft’s lack of disregard for the gaming community in whole by making the console as gamer infriendly as possible. Hardcore gamers could care less if they can switch between live tv, movie, to game and back again by voice command! They buy the console to play games! And until they make hand and body movement recognition lag free I don’t think well be seeing any hardcore FPS, RPG, or sports titles sold that don’t need a controller. This new console…(spit) isn’t a console! It’s a blu-ray player that allows you to switch to live tv while surfing the internet and takking to buddies on Skype … that spies on you.
Don’t we already have something like that?
Oh yeah! … the PC!!!
Oh, but this one will do it 24/7 because it’s always on!
Oh, sorry, I forgot… it’ll play XB one games (which prices will be higher on because the software store you go to will have to cover the fees that Microsoft charges them for selling used games that they take in on trade from savvy consumers who don’t want to pay full price.)
In the end, the one who gets hurt the most from corporate stupidity, is the corporation itself. Microsoft will lose a lot of customers if they follow through with this plan. And Sony would do well to pay attention to the bad hype that Xbox One is getting already and modify their plan accordingly for the PS4.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: The original topic...

The article is specifically about how this will affect the used video game market. By pointing out that certain architecture changes affect backward compatibility, I would say it’s pretty damn important to argue about how these changes affect things in a next gen gaming console.

PaulT (profile) says:

Re: Re: The original topic...

I’m sure it doesn’t confuse him. The fact that people can both complain about a product’s features and refuse to buy it is apparently beyond some people, though.

It’s perfectly valid to explain why you’re refusing to buy something, especially if you were perfectly happy with a product last gen but the replacement model is deemed inferior or less attractive. Which I where I also stand here, for what it’s worth, though I’m no longer an early adopter with these things so I’ll see where things are when I’m in the market for a new console in 2 years or so.

Akari Mizunashi says:

Thanks to the PS4 readying itself for a launch, I see Microsoft took the immature road by yelling “FIRST!!1!!” to the world, and like most comments like this on the internet, then offer nothing else.

Unlike most people, I plan to wait months beyond its release before I buy it. This way, I allow the suck, er, gamers to throw down their cash and tell me what’s up with the console (especially if it, you know, crashes and requires a send off to be repaired).

While I am fine with these new consoles being reclassified as “entertainment systems”, it’s really disappointing to see the gaming market is being forced to change in lieu of proprietary crap like this.

Doesn’t matter if the game requires an always-on internet connection, or that codes have to be used to play used games, the bottom line here is Gamestop’s billion dollar business model is ruined because everyone else believes those monies should be theirs and no one else.

If this is the future of gaming, they can keep it.

The great news in all this will be those who rush to sell their 360 and games means I can pick them up for a song (and maybe a dance), as I will most assuredly keep my 360 on hand for years to come, thanks to all the “new” games I’ll have.

PS: The Kinect will be a deal killer for me. No way in hell will I ever allow Big Business to require a camera in my house for their use. NO WAY.

That’s just going far, far, far over the line for “entertainment”.

Anyone who complains about this feature in the future, because it will be abused, has no one but themselves to blame.

Just Another Gamer says:

Re: Re:

“PS: The Kinect will be a deal killer for me. No way in hell will I ever allow Big Business to require a camera in my house for their use. NO WAY.”

Same here. The portion of my brain responsible for paranoia is ringing alarm bells like crazy over this “feature”. Inevitable tinfoil hat related questions pop to mind, like how deeply is the US government involved in this move by Microsoft? A high resolution camera and microphone in your home is no doubt a wet dream for the likes of the DoD/CIA/HLS/etc. Foreign governments should be very concerned about this development if they care at all about their citizens. I live in Canada and can only hope my government has the good sense to outlaw such a requirement. Doubtful given the Conservatives track record unfortunately.

I read this post on Gamespot today and thought it was worth adding to the conversation:

“I am guessing that this console is for

People who do not have a smart phone with internet capabilities.

People who do not have a Media Streaming device like: Roku, Apple TV, Tivo,

People who do not have a Smart TV

People who do not have a cable/Satalite DVR

People who do not have a Xbox 360/PS3/Wii

But those people who have none of these, would they be the ones to but a Xbox One????”

A good question. I also liked the post by an Anonymous Coward here on Techdrt:

“Here’s all you need to know

-It will spy on you
-You won’t be able to make it stop
-You won’t be able to play used games
-You won’t be able to lend games out
-You won’t be able to disconnect it from the internet for too long
-You won’t be able to swap internal hard drives
-You won’t be able to play 360 games

But ignore all that, Look at the monkey! Look at the silly monkey!”

It’s looking as if I will be going back to PC gaming after all, as more information about these next gen consoles comes to light. There are quite a few PC games I want to play which are not available on any console so I’m ok with that. I actually just built a new machine and was amazed by two things; how powerful it is and how cheap it’s become to build such a beast. It will last me five years minimum and does everything the XB1 can do, except I’m the one in complete control.

Here is more food for thought. GameStop shares are taking a big hit thanks to recent news regarding used games. I wonder if they’ll respond by boycotting all things Microsoft, choosing to sell only competitors products? Used games is big business with a heck of a lot of dollars involved, and not just for GameStop. Would game developers then respond by making their games only available on the XB1, in effect punishing the other console makers for not being as locked down and controlling as the XB1? From a business perspective, the video gaming market is about to be hit by an earthquake of epic proportions and it will be very interesting to see how things pan out for all the players involved once the dust settles.

special-interesting (profile) says:

The Xbox One article does bring up many questions starting with privacy and ending up with almost pesticide enhanced closed-wall/sealed-greenhouse gardening techniques. The hints about the extremely limited sales/resales licensing might cut into legitimate businesses like GameStop. Why would they even consider cutting into their supporting fan/user/commercial base?

For any product to be universally accepted it must be… universally available? (lets not forget universally appreciated) Yeah. Ideally it should be available at the local 7/11 convenience store or truck stop. Its sweet that MS shareholders want a larger cut of the pie but have they considered the size of the marketshare pie itself? (Is it growing or shrinking? What corporate wanking decides whether to squeeze cash out of a small captive market or profits from a larger open market??)

If EA/Microsoft/Maxis/etc were selling bubble gum or candy bars at the local convenience store who would care if a 50 cent or dollar item was disposable or not redeemable (with quality exceptions of course)? MS games cost about 30-60 a pop! They are NOT selling Life Savers or chocolate but ultra premium products that few could consider disposable. What can the average family afford? Zip.

MS seems to dance around the topic of ‘always online’. Even if this is not totally true, exactly what data does MS record and is there the capability to refuse/shutoff automatic updates and yet retain full functionality? Do the updates include changes to the End User Licensing Agreements (EULA) or Terms Of Service (TOS)? This only sounds trivial but it’s major contractual stupidity for any user. (Want to rant about such open ended nightmares of legal responsibility heaped on the average consumer.) -restrains self heroically-

Ok. The real beef in this imaginary triple decker with special sauce 2140 calorie burger… Privacy. Of which John Kass of the Chicago Tribune wrote a much more scary article about where it might be convincingly the only case where nuclear drone strikes might do some good.

To bring the ‘always online’ threat to full boil… The Xbox One has both a ?camera and a microphone? both tuned and pointed directly into your living room or game parlor not to mention one of the better micro possessors actually and actively monitoring your presence/movement/voice/guests. Since there will undoubtedly be voice recognition…

Waring… Spoiler Alert!

In 2001 A Space Odyssey HAL9000 was ‘always on(line)’ with a never ending stream of access to personal crew life-data. HAL 9000’s problem was that it was officially ordered (by defense/security officials) to keep its alien obelisk discovery mission a secret from the crew and not suprisingly considered the spacecraft crew members a risk. (and tried to kill all of them) A very real Artificial Intelligence (AI) dilemma that anyone who codes/programs self configuring programs/apps/networking might worry about.

Compare this with the Xbox One’s self updating programming risks. Further consider the proposals by the FBI/CIA/NSA/etc. for easy to use (and easy to abuse in every case) backdoors into all large consumer/business database… does anyone really have to have this sentence finished? Write your own ending.

All endings will almost surely be bad when the EULA and TOS are not set in nutronium/steel/iron/stone/titanium. One of the best examples of this is the web based TOS that says at the bottom (in smaller than the smallest print) ?this agreement can be revised at any time?. The cable (and many other) companies have obviously used/abused this prolifically.

A quote from Jeff Henshaw a MS rep; ?”If you want privacy, we’ll give you modes that ensure your privacy,”? which will allay any fears a child might have when worried about monsters under the bed. No mention that the current (EULA and TOS) shadows might be upgraded to substantial gremlins/monsters/dragons later on. There were other scary nonspecific quotes, please read the article.

The Xbox One supposedly will handle TV/Cable and be able to track a usage and recommend similar videos of like content. Where is this different from the TVO or Nielson ratings TV tracking devices? People actually get paid for providing consumer opinion and viewing habits… why give it up for free?

Keeping in mind that this ‘game’ console is being targeted and sold to kids! Can we expect any adult concerns about the obvious and substantial privacy issues from children? Do parents actually read up on the technical issues of a ‘game’ console when the brats are whining and screaming in the store isle?

Most high school kids and under would never even consider such details as privacy (and such) when overwhelmed by the glitzy attention grabbing graphics and captivating gameplay plot. Its reminiscent of selling cigarettes to kids. (Its done all the time if anyone remembers Joe Camel cartoon figures.)

Many other nontechnical users will also not likely be aware of the eternally changing contractual EULA and TOS traps these devices will likely be. Keep in mind that they will be tied directly to your credit card and as such contractually binding. Good luck.


Activation Fees after forking out 60 bucks for a stupid game? Yikes. (No way!)

MS’s switch from nVidia to AMD video processing is not surprising considering how nVidia has severe licensing problems. ($$) AMD is decent.

Smartphones can be so much better designed in terms of personal/individual security. All it takes is a bit of clever programming and hardware tweaks.

Disclaimer. Do not own a game box. However the Wii is looking really cool… (thanks for the comments) Went Linux so many years ago.

The above article did not mention 1984 in any way… hehhe.



In other unrelated Chicago, Illinois news; Gov. Pat Quinn signed into law to ‘crack down’ on anyone who uses flash media (unspecified) to organize ?flash-mob? violence? As if there are not already laws against violence. Is this not just another law that piles on top of existing law? Is not an offender/accused supposed to have a constitutional right not be charged twice for the same offense?

Anonymous Coward says:

I’m not fond of the idea of screaming 1984 every time someone oversteps but I seem to remember there being a passage in the book about a camera in your television, watching you always.
Well here we are with the Kinect 2.0 with a camera that is required to always be watching you and the government trying to push backdoors into all things.

RyanNerd (profile) says:

It was Halo that drove the market for the 360

This release there is no “killer game” that only works with the new console. The only reason I bought a 360 was because it would play the next release in the Halo franchise and pretty much anyone I talked to was of the same mindset.

M$ figures that since they’re M$ everyone will come running to their latest and greatest (be that O/S or game console).

Sorry M$ but you’ve become the new IBM and no one really cares about what you come out with next. Your ethically questionable strong arm business tactics are finally catching up with you.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: It was Halo that drove the market for the 360

Sorry M$ but you’ve become the new IBM and no one really cares about what you come out with next.

clearly, the author of this article cares, and you care enough to comment about it. Now let me guess, you just hate M$ as you call it.

You’re very passionate about this subject, clearly you care ALOT.

anonymouse says:

A bit late to the discussion but..

I think it is very very important for microsoft to note that since the relese of the “ONE” Nintendo has seen an increse in sales of their consoles of very close to 400% as compared to the week prior to Microsoft announcement.
Now i am sure that many will be able to spin this in favor of Microsoft somehow, but in reality a hell of a lot of people have just spent a hell of a lot of money to invest in the Wii U than had planned on doing. If Microsoft is to understand anything about gaming in this generation, trading games with your friends is one of the biggest things real gamers do. Yes they have caused the loss of a new game sale but the same can be said of second hand car sales and the thought of a manufacturer somehow removing the ability of someone to buy a second hand car is just crazy, and the thought that those people buying a car for a few thousand dollars would be able to afford a car for $20 000 is crazy. I mean in that way what would happen is people would save for years to purchse a car and they would then have to keep it their whole lives or until it was scrapped. This would happen to games too. People will not buy the various games and be putting their money into the games industry. For every person that is buying a new game there is another buying a second hand one, these are the rules of ownership…now if i cannot sell my game i keep it an cannot afford a new game unless i save much longer than i would have, therefore getting games well past their release date, which a hell pf a lot of fans don’t want, they want to play with their friends while they are playing the game.

I am trying to see how this could be a positive for the gamers.

If Microsoft had to charge a flat fee of say $1 to transfer a game from someone to another person that would be great, but i am damn sure they are not going to , they will take this opportunity as any business would to milk the gamers for as much as they could, maybe not initially but eventually.

I cannot see the publishers ever dropping the price of second hand games in the market to the price they drop on places like ebay and amazon, this will then force many to not buy some of the games they really want. And that could just end up being the end of gaming consoles for them, where they just cannot justify the purchase, or they move on to the likes of the Wii who do not have any restrictions at all.

I am surprised with this from Microsoft, i seriously thought they would understand gamers before doing something this drastic, but it seems like they think that as long as they stick to their proposals they will eventually grow. I think they are in for a big surprise this time around though.

Killer_Tofu (profile) says:

Market Research

I saw somebody mention somewhere on the interwebs, this could all be a sort of marketing research for microsoft.

They sit there and spew absolutely crazy ideas and see how badly the public will react to them. Since they are all software restrictions of stupidity, they can gauge how well the public will receive any absolutely horrible money grabbing policy they may want to push at the behest of the greedy EA types.

By being vague and letting the public discuss, they are trying to figure out exactly how anti-consumer and anti-freedom / right of first sale they can be before the public will actually say no en-masse.

Something to think about. Hopefully I am not too late in responding to this for some people to read this comment.
Have a great holiday weekend my fellow TDians.


Lurker Keith says:

Possible confirmations?

Every time I look into this, the info just keeps getting worse. Even Xbox loyalists are jumping ship.

Gaming journalists have ferreted out how much the Used Game fee will be, AND seem to have confirmed who gets it:

Just going to quote the relevant bits. You probably should read the whole thing yourselves.

Retailers can sell used games for whatever price point they want, just the same as they do now. However, each physical copy sold has a royalty fee that goes toward the publisher and console manufacture, and the retailer gets to keep 10 percent of the final sale. This means that if Gamestop sold a used copy of a game for $60, they would only make $6 on the sale, which would mean they would probably have to sell games for about 200% of the market value if they wanted to see decent returns on used game sales…

Now, one retailer informed GameSpot that the license activision fee for used games would be about 52$ or ?35. I don’t know how true this is but that would mean that Microsoft is getting a massive cut from every used game trade, and depending on how much you get back from the trade, that’s almost 90% of the game’s standard market value per each activation. This would easily explain why EA was so quick to kill off the Online Pass program.

As that says, people are starting to draw conclusions that EA only backed off of Spotpass because of this (they may have some exclusive deals w/ Micro$ucks).

This looks like GameSpot’s report:

It’s sickening that nothing I’ve read says the Developer gets any of that royalty. *head-desk*

The numbers on the Nintendo situation appear to be they went from 390th place (or 243rd; the numbers vary from site to site; one says, & has been quoted a few times, it’s a 875% increase in ranking) on some category of Amazon UK to 40th, or some reports are saying 10th now! Whatever the real numbers are, it is a huge change in ranking, & that is INSANE. People are congratulating Microsoft for selling so many Wii U’s:

Now, I will talk about the reported sales drop in the UK of the Wii U that only a fraction of sites mentioned. That price drop sounds like it was at the beginning of the month & not helping until this week. I’m not sure which site/s mentioned the timeframe.

There have also been claims that people (possibly insiders) have confirmed that that “visual DRM” Patent has indeed been implemented in Kinect 2 for the Xbox One:

I’ve been trying to find more concrete info, by Googling stuff like “Wii U sales increase after Xbox One reveal” only brings up the above links or stuff that links to the above links.

I’ve also ran across a pre-announcement backlash against PS4 including any of what the Xbox One is strangling itself with. I don’t use Twitter, but these are the hashtags: #Ps4UsedGames #Ps4NoDRM. It seems Sony may be listening:

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