Saturday, May 19, 2012

Will Next-Gen systems block used games?

I don't think so.

The prelim DevKits for the Next-Gen systems don't appear to have any special firmware that would prevent it from playing any specific disc, and the suppliers memo they sent with them didn't mention anything about it.

Honestly, though, I don't see how they could block used games. They can "physically" do it, sure, but not logistically. A vast majority of Gamers buy new $60 Xbox 360/PS3 games by trading in the other ones they bought to lower the price of it. Getting rid of that venue will see sales plummet and recreate 1983 all over again.

Regardless of what Publishers/Developers want to say, they make a killing on the Rental business, especially through companies like GameFly and the like. Given the facts above and the impending implosion of the Gaming market if Used Games were blocked, I see the probability of this happening as very very low.

Of course, it could happen, anything is possible after all. They could send a new memo requiring that each game be coded to use an Activation Code similar to PC Games, but I truly don't believe that will happen.

7 comments:

  1. Well, I guess it depends on how DRM crazy consoles get. It seems the more the publishers push that, the more honest customers get screwed and turn into dishonest customers.

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  2. It's more likely they'd make a console that only allow's games to be purchased online (digitally); though I think it's too soon for that sort of thing, and a lot of people prefer games to be in physical form, including me. However if Valve were to make a "Steam" console, I think that would be an intriguing idea

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    1. Gaming companies don't seem to take into account Bandwidth issues. A lot of ISP's CAP their users' internet so that they can only use so much bandwidth (sometimes it's 100GB, others it's 250GB, etc.) and having to download 9GB-50GB games will not only be extremely slow but eat up that bandwidth very quickly.

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  3. First of all, holy crap I gotta check my ISP for capped usage. What happens if you go over? Do they charge you more or do they just cut you off for the rest of that cycle? I've heard of cell phone companies doing this, but damn...

    Edit: yea man what a load of crap, I think i'm gonna switch companies. 150GB cap is not future proof, and it's likely AT&T wont raise it accordingly.

    Secondly, bandwidth issues are getting smaller everyday. If there's not a console this gen that focuses almost exclusively on the digital market, then it might be out next gen, or the next; bearing in mind the ISP's give us some leniency.

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    1. You have to check with your ISP and ask if they cap you to find out, more and more are starting to cap now which is horrible.

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    2. A download-only console wouldn't necessarily be a bad thing, but for any of the big 3, cutting out physical media from their console would effectively cut out a large portion of the American market, and probably even a good portion of other markets as well.

      The thing is, ISPs already cap bandwidth... and the majority of people don't currently download tens of gigs of information at a time. Bandwidth usage has definitely gone up, but most people are using chunks of it to watch Youtube videos or upload garbage to Facebook. It's completely laughable that anyone would consider a streaming service like OnLive to be a viable replacement to the current consoles. It's not that OnLive doesn't work right now, it's that having ALL gamers use that type of solution would cripple the current infrastructure.

      In other words, most people don't use nearly as much bandwidth as someone who uses OnLive; so while adoption is low, OnLive users can use all the bandwidth they want, benefiting from uncapped ISPs and minimal competition for bandwidth. But once adoption increases, ISPs are now hammered for bandwidth and HAVE to start capping because they can't even support all the traffic... so bandwidth becomes more valuable and hence, more expensive.

      The idea that this will improve in the future is flawed; in the case of OnLive, their current streaming service will be inadequate once people switch to 4K displays, for example, so the amount of data that has to be streamed will be quadrupled PER USER... so while that 5 Mbps broadband connection might have been good enough, it isn't anymore. Even in regard to downloading games, the size of games is constantly increasing, so the need for more bandwidth is always there. That's not to mention the large portions of the US that don't even have broadband... and they still won't, because they're too spread out to cover the cost of building the infrastructure. The US is far behind countries like Japan in broadband speed because the population density is so much lower.

      There's just a ton of problems with the online delivery method that necessitate the need for physical media. Steam is a great service and I love it, but not everyone can use it. I'd love to see Steam on consoles (or even a standalone Steam console), but there still has to be physical discs for those big games that people can't (or don't want to) download.

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    3. I completely agree.

      Games are going to keep getting bigger because textures are growing in size, sound is getting better and there's (hopefully) more content on the disc.

      Games like RAGE and Max Payne 3 are 20-30GB and Next-Gen could easily hit 50GB or more, necessitating multiple Blu-Ray discs. There's no way millions of people can download a 100GB game.

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