Let's Talk: Xbox One DRM - it's not your worst enemy

With the announcement of Microsoft’s Xbox One, there has been a collection of hatred focused on new video game DRM restrictions. Unfortunately many users don’t truly know the actual measures being put in place on Xbox One video games. In addition, there are a collection of new benefits that come with Xbox One games that are being overlooked. Let’s take a look and talk about how Xbox DRM licensing will actually work. My goal is to help you understand Microsoft’s decisions and see some of the benefits of the new DRM system. If you are still angry at the end of the article, which is fine – PlayStation 4 is a great alternative and I hope you enjoy it (Just let me know how good “The Last of Us” really is).

Obtaining your favorite games

Let’s talk about “step one” – buying content. You will be able to buy a video game on Xbox One, physically or virtually, on the same day. Want to jump onto the “no physical media” bandwagon – go for it! Still want to buy discs and display your favorite titles on your shelf – that is cool also.

A promise that Xbox content will be on both disc and digital the same day, means that gamers can skip the midnight lines and start gaming. No more waiting for a game to show up on the Xbox Live marketplace and no more having to sit next to the guy in line who hasn’t showered in a week, to pick up the latest Halo game.

Even if you choose to buy a physical copy of the game, once installed, no discs are required. All of the content you buy will be linked to the Xbox cloud in addition to being stored on your console. Scratch that game disc and afraid you will never be able to play it again – that was the past!

Sharing with friends and family

Here is the best part, because your game is in the cloud, you can head to your friend’s house, login, and play your games there! That’s right, you can actually play your games while chilling with friends at their house; this has been one of the biggest misunderstandings for the console. So go ahead, head to a friend’s house and play Call of Duty Ghosts multiplayer - Microsoft is not stopping you.

In addition to sharing with your friends, any accounts on your Xbox One can play games installed to the unit. Does mom want to play Dead Rising 3? Does dad want to play Peggle? Even if players aren’t related to you, if their gamertag is on the console, they can access any video games installed.

The fun doesn’t end there, up to ten family members can log in and play shared games on any Xbox One console. Which means when your brother heads to his friend’s house to play his copy of Forza Motorsport, he will also be able to access all of your shared games.

Reselling and trading

Now, let’s talk about reselling your disc games and trading with friends. You will still be able to trade in your games at participating retailers. In addition, Microsoft won’t be charging any fees to retailers, publishers, or consumers for enabling transfer of games. Enjoy playing that game and then head to a store to trade it in for something else – reselling is not dead.

Giving your games to a friend isn’t dead either. Xbox One allows you to give your games to friends with no fees attached. There are two requirements though: the first is that you can only give games to people who have been on your friends list for a least 30 days and secondly, each game can only be given once.

The new collection of DRM rules and restrictions attempts to allow friends and family to enjoy each other’s content while ensuring developers get paid. I know a lot of you like to think of game publishers and developers as “the man”, but truth is – the team of programmers and artists working on your favorite titles are trying to put food on their own family’s tables.

Take a second and step back from your viewpoint, if you work on a video game for years and then one bloke pays $50 for it and shares it with half a dozen friends – is that really fair? Sure, it makes life easy for you, but aren’t you slapping your favorite developers in the face at the same time? Xbox One allows you to still play your game with your friends and even completely give it to your best friend later, while allowing developers and publishers to get paid for their content.

Also let’s think how awesome the ability to access your entire library from any Xbox One console, no discs required, will be. In my house we have three Xbox 360s and if I’m downstairs in the living room and want to play a game, I have to trek myself out of my couch and upstairs to my man cave to grab the disc. Now, with Xbox One, I simply turn on the living room console and sign in to access my copy of RYSE. Microsoft’s latest console works closely with the cloud to ensure your content is everywhere you are.

24 hour check-ins

Let’s not forget to talk about Xbox One’s 24 hour check-in with Microsoft servers. This need to check in with Microsoft’s servers goes back to helping to protect one copy of a game being installed onto a dozen different Xbox machines. Remember, Xbox 360 didn’t actually have the ability to install games completely to the hard drive – this feature is completely new for the Xbox One. Microsoft’s previous gaming system didn’t need a check in because you always needed to have the disc on you. As we move into a world void of physical media, a system has to be in check to ensure piracy doesn’t run a rampage.

Other consoles and systems

After reading this, a percentage of you will most likely say “well that is definitely better than I thought, but PlayStation 4 is DRM free.” The answer to that remark is, no – it isn’t. Sony spent a lot of time talking about how they aren’t imposing DRM restrictions on their games and how awesome they are compared to Microsoft. What Sony didn’t spend a lot of time telling you, is that publishers can put DRM content onto their games if they choose to – and let me tell you, most will choose to.

Sony has more of a mess on their hands than Microsoft does; instead of having a system where all of your content is setup the same and accessible from everywhere, you will have a content system in which games may or may not be restricted in various ways. Some games will be accessible from everywhere and some won’t; it will be a toss-up and you better hope you get what you are wishing for.

Many of you shouldn’t even be bothered by the ideas above, specifically PC gamers who have been buying game after game on Steam. The digital PC game marketplace doesn’t allow you to trade with friends or sell for resale. Let’s not forget that after purchasing content you have to go into “Offline mode” if you know you won’t be able to access the web.

I have friends who have hundreds and hundreds of DRM restricted games on Steam, but scream “that’s Bull $%#@” when they hear that Xbox One has some (and less restrictive) anti-piracy methods in place. Excuse me, but – hypocritical much?


Not all of you will agree with me (trust me, I’m ready for the angry comments), but understand that with the slight DRM restrictions in place – Xbox One gains a new generation of features including disc-less gaming anywhere at any time and faster access to the latest game releases.

On a final note, take time to think of the restrictions in place and how they will affect you; Do you actually not have internet at home (and for those who don’t currently, Xbox 360  will continue to be supported for years to come)?  How many games do you actually sell and when you do - how many are at a store like GameStop or FYE? How often do you just give away your games to friends -and how often are they people you have known for less than thirty days?

DRM is not your worst enemy as long as it is implemented correctly. Whether you like it or not, developers have to get paid or the industry will collapse. Microsoft is working hard to implement DRM and to continue making gaming a great experience. Before you become a hate machine for the boys in Redmond - let’s remember how much you loved the Xbox 360, Halo, and other Microsoft goodies. Put down your angry fists for a second and think about what is actually happening – in the end, you might feel differently.



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Graven Pshya says:

Thank you so much for writing this article. I'm trying to explain to my friends that DRM isn't even THAT bad. Now, I can refer them to this article. :)

glassadam says:

DLing a new release on launch day and skipping the line is great, but ONLY if they allow pre-downloading. If the download isnt available until midnight and I skip the line and go the digital route , I'll be downloading that thing all night long while my buddies who went to GameStop or WalMart are busy playing it!

Musicman247 says:

Just like the PS4, the Xbox One allows you to start playing after a certain amount of the game has downloaded, streaming the rest of it.

glassadam says:

Ah, brilliant. Thanks for the info!

Not after a certain ammount, it will play immediately
Source: http://www.xbox.com/en-US/xboxone/what-it-is

Play without the wait.
With Xbox One, you can start playing immediately as games install. And updates install seamlessly in the background, so your games and entertainment won’t be interrupted.

txDrum says:

As a programmer, the thought of not getting paid would be awful. I don't work in the video game industry, but there's a reason for that. Its a nightmare. Perceived piracy losses often come out of the salaries of developers, not the company.

In five months, people will forget about DRM. That's not really the biggest issue when it comes down to whether or not the XBO will sell. The fact that it is 100$ more than the PS4 on the other hand will kill it for college and high school kids either scraping their own funds or petitioning their parents to buy them a video game toy.

The XBO will do just fine. It would even be plenty competitive at 400$, or even 450$. Steam is doing fine. At some point or another though, its going to come down to price.

tbonenga says:

^This^ Soccer moms will go with the cheapest console. Especially during the holidays. Gotta stretch that money.

diod123 says:

Until that kid goes to friends house and experiences the new Xbox and that crazy cool Kinect.

paulxxwall says:

What's so crazy cool about Kinect uhhh remember the last one

laserfloyd says:

It's far more advanced.  Do the research. :)

Musicman247 says:

With the enforcement of DRM MS would be able to charge less for games, like Steam, since every sale is a sale instead of a re-sale where publishers get nothing.

tbonenga says:

Don't hold your breath on them price drops.

You are 100% correct, that it won't matter in a year and the price is the real killer.

mondokjm says:

After trading in my PS3 and accompanying games, my Xbox One and Ryse preorder cost me $135. As a college student, this was pretty manageable.

Remember that the PS4 does not come bundled with the Eye, so for those that wan't everything the price difference is only $40.

Dan Rita says:

And as a person who works in the industry, actual console piracy rates are literally nothing.

hwangeruk says:

On current gen, which has the benefit of physical disc with an encrypted key to drive firmware with reciprocal key.
As we move to Digital Distribution, that element dissapears and we are now left with code on disk or "blob" in cloud. They absolutely need to make that cast iron - which is why the DRM exists.
Listen, the only people whining are people who are up in arms over used games and their misunderstanding that they think they will have 0 value. Which is not the case, as the articles articulates :/

masaga91 says:

DRM it's not my concern is the ability to use it outside of the us or one of the supported countries

That's one of my biggest complain. I realized yesterday that I cannot download Fable 3, because I'm not in a supported region. So it means all the new digital downloads won't apply for my, and the Xbox One is region locked ... so this is going to be worst. PS4 does not have this region atrocity and it is supported in my region.

A valid concern indeed. I live in Canada and am always sad when I see things that say US-Only. This doesn't just go for Microsoft thought, but a lot of other US based companies.

sasukeluffy says:

You should add to the article,that you can still do everything else your X1 can do when not checked in within last 24h,than play games. Some of my frienda thought that after that 24 line you have to buy a new X1... Please tell that to us!!

diod123 says:

Haha, your friends need to stay off the nitrous

stevechanyi says:

Haters gonna hate, but excellent article. Nice to see some balance for a change.

Rewire says:

Thank you for this.  I have been telling people the same things but they are all barking the same nonsense they heard someone else bark.  MS has given me exactly what I have been wanting in a console and people are bashing these telling them to change it.  There are options,  and I hope the people who were never going to buy this anyways don't make MS gimp my experience because they are short sighted and have a herd mentality.

hauz_20 says:

Very well-laid out article. A couple things: MS won't charge any kind of used game resale fees, but they'll allow publishers to do so. Also, verbiage suggests the family plan only allows one person to be playing a particular game at a time.

Anywho, I don't have a problem with their DRM, per se (it's honestly necessary for their vision), but I'm concerned about losing access to our licenses years down the road. I need to hear more about that from MS.

tgr42 says:

Wow!  Perhaps you would care to explain why MS require 24 hour checkins but Steam's offline mode works indefinitely?
Source: http://steamcommunity.com/discussions/forum/1/864969953572102601/

Musicman247 says:

Because you can't share a Steam game with a friend.

BigwaveMx says:

Thats not true at all. You can get the serial key from some games. Of curse, there is a limit of how many times you can activate a game. Usually 5 times per game.

tgr42 says:

Really?  You think that justifies 24 hour checkins?  If that was really the reason, why not do the checkins only when playing a game that you've shared or has been shared with you, instead of across the board?

Musicman247 says:

I'm glad you know exactly how the 24 hour check-ins will work. You might want to call MS and let them know, since they're still working on it.

The check ins are not on a game by game basis, it runs once every 24 hours (or as soon as you connect it to the internet after a prolonged downtime) and authenticates your entire game library. Why make it more complicated than it has to be.

Dan Rita says:

If you are playing someone elses game then the checks run every hour, such crap.

They haven't said that, all they said in regards to what you are saying is that if you are playing on any other console than your home console then the checks are every 1 hour. You do realize that the system is cloud based right? You can't play your home/shared libarary anywhere that wouldn't have an internet connection. What is crap is how people don't seem to understand the purpose of those check ins. You people need to  get  over it, either you have internet or you don't have it, if you don't then don't buy the X1, it's simple. You don't go buying cell phones if you don't have cell phone coverage in your area right? If your internet is shoddy then go talk to your god dam ISP and bitch, it isn't Microsoft's fault that your net is shit, and they shouldn't have to cater to it either. The 360 will be supported for at least the next 2-3 years, and will still get a majority of the new games too, use that if your net sucks or you don't have it. 

tgr42 says:

Do you realize how little competition there is for Internet access in most places? And how little ISPs care about how shoddy their service is, since they know they have little to no competition? They have you by the balls. You'd better hope MS doesn't end up enjoying the same advantage someday. How about trying to think outside your own situation and have just a shred of consideration for those less fortunate than you.

I do, and people less fortunate than me should be making decisions based on their situation. 

Yes ISP's have a lot of power, and hopefully that wil change in the future, but a company should not be locked in to what they make because of the inefficiences of other companies or markets. 

Currently there is ~80% Internet penetration in NA, that means 80% of the population has internet in some from. Every year more and more places around the world get internet access. Microsoft is obviously looking towards the future, and while that may not work for some now does not mean it will not work for them in the future. 

Why do consumers think that a company should make products specifically for their needs/wants, as soon as a company changes their marketing strategy they are branded as anti-consumerist. I'm sorry, but I don't feel I'm entitled to have a company make any product for my needs/wants. If the don't fit with me I don't buy them, just like people who the X1 doesn't fit for will not buy it. There is nothing wrong with that and people need to get over themselves.

I was about to say that

Aj Beamish says:

At the prices they sell games for on Steam your freind would have any trouble paying for one, two or three.
Live games will be expensive and overpriced no matter what.

Hi thr42, because there are no physical copies of Steam games.

Zeeshan360 says:

Actually there are Steamworks retail games which only work on Steam

Musicman247 says:

So in other words they have DRM.

Steam's offline mode is only meant for 30 days, what that article address' is cheating the Steam system, and is grounds for Steam to ban his account.

tgr42 says:

Wrong.  The official response from Valve in that thread says very clearly:
"Offline Mode is designed to be indefinite. You can't access any of Steam's online features such as friends lists or saved game synchronization, of course, but the client should allow you to run in Offline Mode for as long as you like."

My bad then, but Steam has also had 10 years to perfect their polices, what's not to say that Microsoft may not revisit their policy, or evolve it over time. Keep in mind though that you cannot share Steam games like Microsoft is going to do with the X1, and Steam uses CD key activation DRM which Microsoft is not using with the X1

tgr42 says:

What, like they're evolving their policy in going from Xbox 360 to Xbox One?  I think they've made it pretty clear which direction this evolution will progress in.  It's really sad that people defend ever less consumer-friendly policies.
By the way, Steam doesn't use "CD key activation DRM".  When you buy most games on Steam, there's no key that you have to enter.  You click "buy" and the game is downloaded, installed, and playable.  Some publishers have their own DRM that works independently of Steam which is where keys come into play, but they are in the minority.

They certainly have developed new policies since they launched the 360 and evolved them. What is sad is the hivemindedness that spreads like wildfire. it's fine though you can all stay with the status quo and buy the PS4, but when Sony follows Microsoft into primarily digital distribution in the future (and it will happen) just remember to look back and remember how much you bitched when Microsoft did it. It will be the exact same scenario as is happening right now with XBL and PS+, 8 years ago you all complained that MS charged for MP, but now that Sony is doing it it's suddenly completely acceptable to you.

And Steam uses product keys (CD key  DRM). Just because you don't see it when you purchase a game via the steam store does not mean it is not being used in the background. This is why steam games sold elsewhere (humble bundle for example) give you a product key to enter into steam. It locks the game to that user account indefinitely, you cannot sell, trade in, or lend  your games.

tgr42 says:

Ok you're right, clearly I was wrong to question our MS overlords.  Have fun with your Xbox One!  I hope you enjoy it a great deal.

I hope so too, and hope that you enjoy whatever console(s) you decided to get.

tbonenga says:

I have no problem with what you said except the sharing part. I've loaned my car, power tools, vacuum cleaner, ladders etc. I personally believe if you buy something you should be able to loan or sell it if you choose to. I don't see why game developers are entitled to get paid twice. I understand I'm in the minority on WPCentral but that's how I feel. I totally respect your view. It's just not right for me.

jaybee says:

The kicker there, as others here have said, is that you're not really buying the game. You're licensing it. That was the case even with disc-based games. You own the disc, but not the bits and bytes on the disc.
Your car, power tools, appliances, etc. are all physical goods that you purchased outright, so you own them. Software is completely different because it can be copied so easily. If you read the fine print on any digital/downloadable medium (eBooks, music, TV shows and movies, etc.), there's always a section saying that you are buying a license that can be revoked at any time. There was an article somewhere talking about how the Amazon "Buy Now" button should be renamed the "License Now" button.

mondokjm says:

That's the entertainment business for you. Sadly, we can disagree with it all we want, but it will never change.

You can sell it, just not in every way you want, but they still provide you the opportunity to.

And being able to share your entire library online with 10 close friends/family is not good enough for you?

testement says:

Finally someone talking sense and putting it in writing too.
You sir I salute you.

LucasLumia says:

I totally agree with you. I don't kknow why everyone is upset because they need Internet. If they post here is because they HAVE Internet or a smartphone (probably WP) for example. Even if your service provider is not working you can still use your smartphone as a Wi-fi hotspot. I have some more pros:
1) You can share your games with up to ten friends (not necessarily family) and you don't need to ask them to give you back your disc or they won't have the problem that you are still playing it.
2)Cloud processing. This DRM systems assumes everyone has at least once a day Internet  connection.
3) Constant game updates.

agentTREIZE says:

I'm gonna go with the PS4. I like most of the concepts for the XBox One..... except for that whole used game non-sense. I'm glad Sony remembered the basics that made them a household name.

Zeeshan360 says:

You could still share games with 10 people but in a different way .. U would be sharing games online & ur friend can access all ur game library on the cloud

_Emi_ says:

so what will  you do when games require you to be always online or have some sort of code and it will make it difficult to resell or share your games??
do you really think ps4 is drm free? are you that innocent? Sony game 3rd party publishers freedom to do whatever they want. but you think publishers would want drm in xbox one but not in sony console?
really... i dont know when people will stop writing nonsenses.

Zer0fluX says:

It's gonna be a big slap in your face to learn that Sony's official policy is the same as Microsoft's - developers/publishers can apply any usage restrictions, fees, or online requirements they choose. It will be an even harder slap to your face when the games you buy for the PS4 have the same (or worse) restrictions/requirements as they do on Xbox One.

Don't think for even a minute this is about Microsoft vs Sony. The publishers are driving this policy. They make the content - the games! - and so they have a ton of influence over each console manufacturer's policies. Without games a game console is pointless. Likewise, publishers will not make games for consoles if their returns (profits) aren't worthwhile. Consoles became the dominant gaming platform, far surpassing PC gaming, because developers earned a greater return from console games. PC gaming is seeing a resurgence because of DRM systems like those on Steam that provide more revenue for developers - once again making PCs viable for games that aren't subscription-based MMOs or ports of consoles games after their revenue plateaus on consoles. Don't forget that AAA titles cost tens of millions of dollars to make and have to sell millions of copies to break even.

So don't be surprised when you get hit with difficult to manage DRM that's different for every game from different publishers on that new PS4.

krafty11 says:

Sony going back to the basics in the context of being DRM friendly is the funniest thing I've read today, thanks! 
You may want to google "Sony Root Kit"

g_davis5 says:

Long live Xbox!!!

I agree... While I HATE that I can't carry my live games to the one and wonder what will happen when M$ turns the servers of for the 360 I do like that its been explained for this DRM mess

mondokjm says:

The servers for the 360 won't be shut off for quite a while. Sony was still making games for PS2 for 4 years after the PS3 was released. Expect a similar situation for the 360.

foxibs says:

I just want to say thank you for clarifying everything.

nablor says:

DRM sucks and is just another form of greed control so your article is just trying to justify all the bollocks, I pay for a disk and i should choose what to do with it so feck MS and their greedy bullshit.

Musicman247 says:

Re-selling and trading was never legal. MS is just enforcing the current copyright laws.

Tell that to the used car industry. Or any other type of industry that sell physical products.

lol, this guy...

BlobDude says:

Re-selling and trading has ALWAYS been legal. It's called the First Sale Doctrine. I can buy a game, and then choose to re-sell that product again at a later date, because I own and have full rightrs to that physical product. What I can't do legally is infringe upon the copyright, which would be copying and selling/distributing the content of that physical product while retaining ownership of the one that I purchased.
If re-selling and trading were "never" legal, then it wouldn't be a regular practice.

Musicman247 says:

I'm going to laugh when MS starts selling games at $49 while Sony is selling the same games for $59. PS4 FTL.

When Sony was asked if they were going to keep charging $60 for the games, they told the interviewer that they could no discuss that at this point. Microsoft had already confirmed that new games will be $60, so the only reason Sony wouldn't stick it to Microsoft again in a public manner would be if they were planning on raising the game prices.

Zeeshan360 says:

Lol writing PS4 ftw .. What if developers put cd key on PS4 like steam .. U won't be even able to lend to a single person.
Here MS is atleast allowing u to share to limited people

agentTREIZE says:

Lol you're funny. If Sony was anticipating developers putting cd keys on PS4 disks, they wouldn't have even bothered announcing the DRM-free PS4.

Zeeshan360 says:

Sony clarified in the interview that only 1st party games would be DRM free .. Third party publishers could put any DRM restrictions they want

sony is leaving the DRM to the publishers... the PS4 it self is DRM free, but the publisher of the games can choose the DRM method they want.alot of people seem to forget that sony just handed all the work to publishers so they can clean there hands

_Emi_ says:

please idiot.... im sorry but if you dont even know what you are talking about and you still comment like you do, you are an idiot.

diod123 says:

You think game developers for ps4 are going to just let you steal their shit? You need to get off the nitrous as well.

lemonsteveo says:

I wouldn't trust Sony with my credit card again after that hacking fiasco.

dlusted says:

Are you really that naive??
You have only purchased a LICENCE to play the game...... And that licence is only really meant for ONE client.....

You have paid for the ability to play!!!

But, if you don't like that then go elsewhere.... But remember EVEN on PS4, you are ONLY purchasing a licence!

The more I see these sort of illogical complaints, the more I think its just Fanboyism!

agentTREIZE says:

Clearly I am going elsewhere (and saving $100 in the process). I know that when you buy software, you're really only getting a license to use it.

Just because I'm a fan of a MS product, doesn't mean that I have to blindly follow and agree with any and/or everything they come out with.

The DRM stipulations are dumb and need to be redone. Needing to be online at least once every 24 hrs? Dumb move too. A lot of people either don't have a continuous reliable internet connection and others might go somewhere for maybe a week or two that doesn't have internet access.

Yeah people might go away for a bit, but are they really going to be taking their console with them? Oh no, with the X1 they won't be able to.. whatever will they do? perhaps they can go outside and play the game of LIFE.

hwangeruk says:

OK 2 things.
A) You can still sell your games
B) MS don't charge for it
The end.

tal99 says:

Not the End:
C) You can sell your games only to approved store (and not for example put it on ebay)
D) These stores usually take a huge margin
E) When Microsoft servers are down you can't play anything (esp. the 1 hour checkin at frieds)
F) Someday Microsoft will shut the servers down for good because most people use the XBOX THREE - then you can't play any of your games anymore
BTW: I'm OK with DRM in some cases, even no reselling if the single-user license is significantly cheaper. But if I buy a disk-based game I requiere that it should work in offline mode, too, when the disk is inserted.

DaveGx says:

They are going to still have to sell games slightly cheaper than the competition really sell this to some. I understand the why, but this can't be compared to Steam unless games are cheaper.

The real shame is the 24 hour thing makes the Xbox One useless for some people.

Remember that when Steam started they never had the insane sales they have now. Those type of sales didn't come for a few years, after they had established themselves and more consumers were adopting their platform.

Bloobed says:

It's not like XBox being similar to Steam is a good thing anyways. I do buy from Steam-sales. I buy games that I do not expect to play through more than once or twice, and the price has to match that expectation.

EbolaXB says:

The problem i have with this is that I am in the Navy and go on 6 to 8 month deployments and am unable to connect to the internet. Maybe make a way to certify the X1 as used by military members and let them play the game offline. Deployment really sucks without games to get your mind off things and I do not want a PS4.

Musicman247 says:

Pretty sure they said that Military would get codes to use to stay offline.

EbolaXB says:

I hope so, I just get the updates from here so I don't know everything involved with it.

tgr42 says:

Nope, not according to Don Mattrick @ MS.  No exceptions.  No Internet connection?  "We have a product for [those poor people], it's called the Xbox 360!"
Source: http://venturebeat.com/2013/06/13/microsofts-mattrick-doesnt-know-about-...

hwangeruk says:

No, they have said they would consider it (was reading it last night)
2) Its a small install base
3) Its wrong to assume Troops don't have internet access (they do) and are on Xbox Live
4) Some sea based military cannot get Internet access (like folks in subs)
So, as much as you like to hate on MS for this, the military element is not that significant. Its also not _your_ situation - you are just using it as point to argue your case.

EbolaXB says:

I'm not sure what you think you know but being on any Naval ship (not just subs) means you cannot hook up your Xbox to the ships LAN and get a connection. Just because we have access to internet doesn't mean we can go in Live and play. And don't ever pull that "not my situation" B.S. with me. I serve in the military and have been for 12 years. I'm not hating on MS (I have two windows phones, 3 pcs running windows 8, windows 8 in my car, a surface pro and 5 Xbox 360s. Don't assume or misinterpret a comment because you want to put someone down in order to stand on your imaginary soap box spewing biased information from the mouth of a derelict.

chucky says:

So that means if a friend gives me a game I can't give or sell that game to another person? So Im practically stuck with it? Ouch.

Correct. Two people are seen as the limit for one license.

Zeeshan360 says:

Only u and ur friend can use it ..
But if more of ur friends want it then they have an option of accessing ur Game Library on the cloud free of cost provided that u are a Gold member

Gigantuouse says:

In your article you have "Sony has more of a mess on their hands then Microsoft does" it should be "Sony has more of a mess on their hands than Microsoft does".

diod123 says:

Are you arguing over the word than/then or are you repeating the same exact thing?

He is helping fix the spelling, which is somewhat important because an article with poor spelling/grammar will not be taken as seriously as one with good spelling/grammar. 

Manny C says:

Thank you so much for this article. Helped me understand DRM more and and as I expected, it's not at all the big deal people are making it out to be. I will never notice any of the "restrictions." Thanks!

ovancantfort says:

This cloud thing makes me laugh. Yes, your games may be available everywhere, but maybe not INSTANTLY available. The reality will more likely be: you go to your friend, wait 5h for your 40GB game to download, then play (good luck if you intend to place your Xbox in a room with only WiFi access)

Zeeshan360 says:

No .. You could start playing game instantly while the game is being downloaded in the background

Considering that even G routers have transmit speeds higher than most broadband connections I don't think downloading over WiFi is going to be a problem (if you are trying to say that a wired connection would be better.

gastovski says:

I have to admit that some of your thoughts are true, but...
shares it with half a dozen friends – is that really fair?

Is it realy fair that you buy a BluRay for 25$ and then watch it several times with friends? Damn yes it is, so it is with physical games.
And the "24h hours check in" is just shit. Sorry, but it's as simple as that. I'm living at the university and have problems with the internet frequently. And as you say, it is to checking whether you have the rights to play games or not, but the consumers want to have the right to fucking OWN a game completly. Sure it is the decision of MS to make it that way, and it is our right to say that we don't want it.

Its not up to MS, its up to the devs. Its their property.

Musicman247 says:

You can't own a game. You can own a license to play a game, but you can never own a game. You didn't make it.

Same thing for movies. Showing a Blu-ray movie to a large audience is actually prohibited by law, it's just not easily enforced.

gastovski says:

I'm talking about private screenings. And for that there is no limitation.

Zeeshan360 says:

24 hr check in is to confirm whether u still own the license or u sold ur disc to ur friend .. U can play games without discs on Xbox One , so this problem has arised
I think Microsoft should allow playing offline if disc is in the drive .. Online check in should only be for playing disc less

The sharing feature makes sense. You have 10 friends on your list and any one of them can access any of your games at any time. This is no different then lending your games, except takes out the distance. At the same time you will always have access to your games, think of it like you have two licenses, one on your HDD and a shareable one in the cloud. 

And the authentication will take a small amount of data to complete, so unless you are without internet for over 24 hours at a time then you have nothing to worry about.

And people want to own their games completely? tell that to the millions of Steam users.

dlusted says:

Now hopefully people will shut up about it....

If you don't like the idea of DRM, just kindly fuck off and not get the XB1.... Maybe now people will move on with their lives

Not sure if any of you guys bought into the $99 " entertainment for all" Xbox that you had to sign a 2-year Xbox live contract for...it also has to be online to check the status of your contact...if you miss a monthly $14.99 payment, your Xbox WILL NOT work...i learned this the hard way..lol. Your Xbox will turn on, after about 30 seconds a screen pops up with a big red X and says please update your payments, or something like that, then shuts off your Xbox...i have never heard anyone complain of this..

wpguy says:

That's different... that situation doesn't happen if you paid full price for your Xbox, instead of doing the installment plan as you describe.

What your missing here is DRM is bs and sucks. I don't need some new restrictions on my gaming period. I'm so sick of musicians, game developers, and movie execs crying poor mouth.

Give me a break it's all about money and always had been. People at the bottom het exploited more than any exec ever has.

Trust me the cooperation's of America are well represented in Washington, after all they buy the congressman and buy the laws that have punishments that are disproportionate to the crimes.

jgbstetson says:

It's simple. Console gaming is on the decline. Game studios are feeling the pain. MS and devs are trying to enforce the policies that, ignored, are partially responsible for sucking the blood from the industry. But to you, it sounds like greed and political conspiracy? Well alright then.

Tordur says:

When I play a game, I rarely play offline, if I don't have an internet connection, I usually go outside instead, and cries.. MULTIPLAYER ALL THE WAY! 

Zeeshan360 says:

Microsoft would have number of people playing Xbox 360 online vs offline .. And the Online demographic would be more

Oh no, with the X1 gamers will need to go outside when their internet goes down.. LOL. Some of these complaints make me think that these gamers spend all their free time on their consoles.. and if they can't use them they will go into withdrawls.

lubbalots says:

I highly praise this article! The stupidity people and the tech community made themselves to look. They should feel ashamed and embarrassed of themselves. I honestly thought those gullible negative folks are PS fan boys getting paid by Sony to do hack jobs.

lubbalots says:

...and about the always on online. Every tech community was just hammering MS with negative articles. But when Xbox Live goes down, they also bitch! Who the F are these people!

Rug says:

Not every 360 owner complained when Live went down, just the ones that used the service. 2 very different numbers.

I have friend that has never had their 360 connected to the Internets.

tcman88 says:

I have ordered both Xbox one and PS4. There may be be perks but DRM has no benefits for consumers actually. Same thing apple did for years with iTunes. DRM is there to drive up the profit by controlling the market. But do most people care about it? I guess we'll see

lubbalots says:

If you look at game companies over the years, many good ones have died or been bought out. How is that? Even big name ones of late are struggling! But how? If DRM can help save them, wouldn't it be a good idea. By the way game industry is not same as music. Those music folks can still survive touring. Programmers tour for applications.

Yes, more popular music acts can survive touring, but groups that have yet to break out? Not so much. Plus, another downside of the situation with the music industry is that it's increasingly difficult for really talented artists to get distribution deals because labels have lower margins and therefore less funds to "risk" on somebody that's actually doing something original. (read: not guaranteed to sell)

xacious says:

Every form of entertainment has faced the same hurdle as game developers. Musicians and movie studios have found different ways to adapt the same needs to happen for these guys. I love Microsoft but this is all in the best interest of business not the consumer. I don't see where I fit in the business model anymore. I drop $500 on a machine that's largely useless if I don't fork out additional cash for subscription services. Obviously I have a simple choice, dont buy an Xbox 1 if I don't like their set of rules. My problem is where this could potentially lead and what it could mean in the future. I don't have a blind loyalty to any company once they out grow their usefulness to me so I won't excuse what I see as the cost of doing business with corporations. I love my Lumia 920 I love my windows 8 laptop but I may sit this round of consoles out as I fear its clearly becoming more about keeping shareholders pleased instead of the people who actually play the games.

Zeeshan360 says:

U should add in the article that Family Sharing requires Gold Membership

wpguy says:

The only hole I see is that there is apparently no facility for renting games. I am more likely to pony up the whole $60 on a game I am curious about if I have had the chance to play it for a day or three. RedBox, your games were fun while they lasted...

Musicman247 says:

The renting companies will either come up with a way to work with MS, or they will shut down. SImple as that.

You have to remember we're only hearing about the end consumer digital rights, not rights for companies. It's illegal for you to lend a movie to a friend to watch (yes it is), but Netflix and Blockbuster pay a lot more for the right to loan out the videos.

They are apparently working on a rental solution

wetworker says:

The only thing I'm worried about is the checking in feature, and how that will effect the fighting game community and tournaments.

darquehelmet says:

In an interview on gametrailers, the lead designer for the new Killer Instinct game said that Microsoft is working on a solution to allow fighting game tournaments to the xbox 1.

val.m says:

The only problem I have with the xbox one are the region locks. Since I'm not in one of the initial 21 countries, who knows when we'll get support back here, if ever. And I really want to get an X1. I love the kinect integration, I'm really digging the voice commands and just controling with gestures.

lemonsteveo says:

I'm with you on that.  I just want to get my hands on one, but wonder what restrictions would there be if I imported one.

Honestly huge Xbox fan and Lumia 920 but I hold no allegiance to anyone. Just like MS I'm gonna look out for me. So ps4 and sell my Lumia because I don't agree with MS actions.

Nobody has to agree with me it my personal choice. However I will miss my 7 years as a MS Xbox consumer. Have some great online friends but my beliefs are my own.

diod123 says:

This is just sad, really. You are ditching your 920 because of the Xbox? Come on man, get your head screwed on.

jgbstetson says:

If you have no allegiance to anyone, why does the 920 have to go? What does the xbone have to do with that?

He does not want to financially support a business that he sees as supporting so anti-consumer practices, that's the idea. Similarly, though the EA Online Pass only applied to used games, I refused to buy ANY games (new, used, or digital) from EA until they got rid of that feature, because I thought it to be a horrid way to punish consumers for GameStop's actions.
I dislike the practices with the Xbox One right now, and I won't be buying one, but I do not have enoguh of an issue to part with my PC and Windows Phone as well.

RellD05 says:

Just curious, but in the article you say: "What Sony didn’t spent a lot of time telling you, is that publishers can put DRM content onto their games if they choose to – and let me tell you, most will choose to."
What evidence do you have that 'most will choose to'. Have developers had the option on consoles in the past??

Musicman247 says:

EA did.
Also, when Sony sees how many exclusives Xbox will get, and how much cheaper they will be able to sell the games for, the publishers will begin implementing similar restrictions on the PS4.

james v says:

Big publishers won't,make Xbox exclusive games if they do they will be, losing millions of dollars from consumers who own ps4. Don't forget Xbox and playstaion are the big dogs of console market

Aj Beamish says:

Electronic Arts has also been awarded worst company two years in a row by The Consumerist.
Keep in mind, this is not worst company as compred to the like of 2K and Rockstar. This is worst company when compared to the likes of CHASE and COMCAST.
Saying "EA did' isn't saying much at all.

Zeeshan360 says:

Developers didn't have an option to differentiate because all the Console manufacturers used to have same DRM .. Now Microsoft changed it so devs could earn a part of re sale ..
Devs might put their own restrictions like cd key authentication , some might put always online , some might have online passes .. Everything will be fragmented on PS4
While on Xbox One everything would be same irrespective of any game

Bloobed says:

PS4 has the same policy as PS3, so far we have pretty much only seen online passes.

Rug says:

Hasn't ea stated that they are removing the online pass feature?

Michael, I agree with most of your points. The fundamental issue is who owns the game? Is it the customer or the developer? One of the posters above stated digital downloads and physical disks should be treated differently. I agree 100%. If you have the disk inserted no more online checking. If you have a downloaded version check online, perhaps once a week or whenever you load a game. Daily seems obsessive. Also decrease the cost of the downloaded version versus the physical disk, enough to compensate for the expected loss of revenue due to piracy and the tighter restrictions on the digital version. Then let the market choose!

Zeeshan360 says:

Yeah if u have disc in drive , there should be no online checks ..
I think MS might be thinking about it ..

jgbstetson says:

The result would be that no one connects online and game swapping remains rampant.

Aj Beamish says:

Give me a break already. People have been swapping games since Pong. There is nothing wrong with it. Rampant would better describe the over-inflated egos in the gaming industry that believe working class people are stealing from them and taking food of their upper middle class tables. You want to sell more games? How about this, try releasing a game that is fun and not broken and in need of a patch out of the box. A game in which people can log onto your servers without complication on day one. And if you are going to Micro-Transaction the fun out of a game have the decency to sell it for less than $69.99. Talk about theft.

zicoz says:

I agree completely, people are overreacting something insane, but that's the internett I guess.
One thing though, from what I understand the 10 "family members" don't actually have to be family members, if this is true, you can add your friends to that list, and voila you can share your digital games with friends.

"Microsoft won’t be charging any fees to retailers, publishers, or consumers for enabling transfer of games."
Yeah, MS won't, but any and all publishers can choose to, or even completely block the sales of used games, you seem to have forgotten to mention that.
I've not given up on the One yet, but it's not looking good so far, I'm gonna wait and see what happens.
As for DRM on the PS4, it's only for online passes, that's what publishers can chose to add, something the PS3 and the 360 already have. They can't chose to block used games altogether, or make you pay a fee for non MP focused things. It will work the same way the 360 and PS3 work now.

Zeeshan360 says:

Devs could add cd key authentication like Steam ..

Got a link to that?
I haven't heard anything like that,

ladydias says:

Pretty much what Jason said.

Very good write up. I completely agree!

restlessdan says:

Nice article. Its so nice to see a write up like this so sick of the bad press about this subject and people who misunderstand about it and because they don't understand they just moan about it.

The only thing that i think would be better with the 24 hour situation if people don't have a internet connection why can't they have the system ask for the disc to prove that they still own the game and haven't sold it on.

So do you get a license code to pass on to a friend when you download a game? Since you aren't required to buy a disc.

No, you create a shared online library and add your friends into it, up to 10 of them.


Thank you so much for this article. I will buy an Xbox One day one but with gangs of angry gamers roaming the wilds of the interweb it was disheartening reading the ill informed hate out there.

My only issue is with the "Always.online feature"... Maybe I shouldn't say "issue" , but it just brings up more questions. Like.. Are we gonna be required to purchase a year subscription? Or can I keep it month to month like I'm doing now? Will the price of XBL change since its required for everyone who has an Xbox? Or IS Xbl even required.. Do we just need an internet connection???

Zeeshan360 says:

U just need XBL Gold service on ur account .. Every other account on the console automatically gets Gold benefits

lubbalots says:

This is awesome. My family can finally use their own gamer tags online! They'd always have to use mine to play. I'd get negative community reviews because of them.

dainla says:

Is it fair to share games? Well, my friend told me how great Bioshock was but for whatever reason, u wasn't going to buy it. He then gave me the game. It was secondhand game. I played it and bought Bioshock 2. That would have never happened had I just continued to ignore the game.

So, net sale for developer due to sharing.

And that's not an uncommon story. I'm a content creator. I advise my fans to give out my albums to people when they are done with it because it expands my audience.

It's nowhere near as simple as what you laud out here.

jgbstetson says:

If you have a disc, you can still give it to one friend.

ok let me lay this out for you(the way i see it) lets say you spend a whole year working on an album and pay the whole studio fee's the remastering and blah blah blah out of your pockets. as an upcoming artist you will most likly be in the negative, now if i happen to pass by you and your selling your album for $5 and i happen to like it and buy it awesome for you. Now what if once i get home burn it to my PC libary and then give the album to my friend... now i happen to have your whole album with me for ever and my friend has it now also for $0, now this could happen countless times... now you lost $5 for every hand me down... now some of those people might not even like your music there for never really go back to you for more... how would you feel out of that lost?

Aj Beamish says:

I'd get out and tour more. Sell T-Shirts at the venue. The music business paradigm has changed. And for the better of the musician. Give out your music for free, blitz the social networks, build up a fan base and charge at the door. Much easier than when I was playing clubs in the late 89s and early 90s.

yes, so did you make your money from the album? or from touring?... personally i love the way Girl Talk took the Free method, he himself said he makes more money from touring and playing shows that actually selling albums... but do video games go on tour? do the studios themselfs put out merch at the stands? i have never heard the headliners like "gears of war exclusive weekend tour coming to a town near you" you have to remember for most of these studios there only form of income comes from the selling of there game

Aj Beamish says:

I've never seen a game developer standing on breadlines and I've been homeless; especialy the dickwad that made the medicocre Gears series. You want to make money creating a game, make a fun game. You want to make money creating music, create good music. It's not rocket science. The kids of working class people do things like trade games because they know their parents can't afford much. There is no malicious intent on their part., they are just tring to get the most out of their hobby. No one is stealing from game developers, they are doing hella better than I did playing gigs 24/7 when I was 19. It's ego-testicle bullshit on the developers part. And it's turning me off of gaming altogether. Maybe if these developers didn't blow millions on their frat buddies marketing firm they'd pull in better numbers. I find it insulting when I see a developer driving a posh sports car and whining about people stealing from him. What does digital distribution do for them? They can charge more for a game and circumvate FIRST SALE DOCTRINE completely. And when the consumer has less choices teh consumer looses each and every time.

Zer0fluX says:

Well, Aj, if the new model drives you out of the gaming marketplace, it's for the best. I much prefer a system where content creators make the money they deserve than one where entitled "consumers" rip them off. As a gamer, I am all for a system where the people who make the products I love are rewarded for their work and encouraged to make more and better games for me to enjoy.

homeless? then you sir have your priorities fcked up... Gears of war might not be your style, but gears is the only shooter to me that isnt a spray and prey that you get a kill, well im not here to talk about gears i love it you don't, but that leads me to the point of the argument. What you think good music to you is, i might think its the worst i have ever heard... same thing goes for games, people are never truly satisfied with what given to them they always complain about everything... example Halo 4 out of the box i had no problem with the balance but people still cried and cried so guess what 343 had to fix it, why cuz people were crying that the boltshot was to strong or this and that, instead of going out and learning how to use a weapon or learning how to counter it... so the developer had to waist more time and money to fix it... its not a one man team, your not taking food of the table of one person but hundreds 

paulxxwall says:

In the article it say only two requirements only friends of 30days and trade only once
Those aren't requirements those are restrictions that's how many see it as because Xbox gamers aren't used to these restrictions

Zeeshan360 says:

Major Nelson is writing a blog on Game Sharing and it would be published mostly by Monday ..
He just tweeted today

Skittledude says:

I remember not too long ago people where mashing up negative pictures of Steam due to their DRM policy, and look where it is now. This is a big step forward for Microsoft and the console industry and one that, with the help of this article, appears to be beneficial.

Like one of my old teachers said "It's easy enough to change the way one person lives but much harder to change the way 10 live.".
The console industry is so big now that a change like this is huge simply because of how many people it affects. This just needs time for it to become more excepted.

wolfgangjr says:

Oh God and this stupid Kinect always on Fiasco? Who flippin cares that it sees you all the time? You privacy nuts just go bonkers sometimes.

MerlotC says:

Family Share is an awesome feature!  Also, I would be surprised if there wasnt an online Netflix like service for game rentals not long after launch.

Shane says:

Great article Michael. Next up HDMI CEC and which providers will be supporting the pass through? I'm actually most excited about the XB1 media features. Also, just trying to figure out how it will deal with multiple users on one console. When my wife walks into the room, how will the system know it's her when she says "Xbox on"? I was selling her on the point she would be able to Skype (which would require ger to be logged into her account) with her mom while sitting in front of the tv. Thanks!

ryzama says:

Awesome article!

lubbalots says:

Finally no more scratched CDs. I've bought so many goods games over the years but to have them scratched or lost. I would say I've wasted a good chunk of money and games!

Bekkenes says:

I like the features on the new machine, for us casual games I think it will be a hit

DrFuss says:

I love my Xbox 360, I plan on switching to PS4, and I'm nowhere near as angst ridden as much of the internet is about the Xbox One.  BUT, I have a few qualms with this article: "Games can be traded in to participating retailers".  Um, who is participating? I sell and buy most of my games on eBay, since most trade in stores (e.g GameStop) is a monumental rip off.  Buying games at a discount (and making money back) puts more money in my pocket, allowing me to buy more games (and occasional new ones).  
Second, the author cites Steam, and how you can't trade Steam games in.  The discounts Steam offers are incredible.  If Xbox One sold download only games as the same price of Steam, I'd be happy to sign up.  Until direct downloads are at least close to the price of used games, used games will win.  
Finally, one last point- 100 bucks cheaper for PS4.  I'm sorry, but any friend of mine with a Kinect says it's collecting dust.  And my remote control works just fine in controlling my TV.  

V Turk says:

Well in that case you get a ps4 xbox one is doing somthing next gen ps4 is not. If you cant see the bigger picture then your gaming ain't going to change

lubbalots says:

What happens when DRM shows up on PS4? Right, you'll bitch again. Kinect was a success to the tech but not game. The new improved hopefully will change that. Imagine a developer implementing moving your head, whole body, or just whole to gauge your direction or ducking, character ducks. I'd say your short sighted as many are at the potential of Xbox One. I've seen many articles raging at Xbox but no article that points to anything compelling about ps4. I'm an old school guy. When I see improvements where its needed, I'm all for it. Ms just that. One more thing, the future is motion and voice control. Check it out. Its in movies, not anymore.

Change the 24 check to twice a month.  Everything else I don't mind.  I love, love going all digital.  Sharing my library of games with 10 friends is amazing.  The backlash is overblown and people are scared about change is all.

V Turk says:

Good article. I agree with everthing. I though another reason for always online was for the ability to use cloud all the time if games are built with cloud in mind then you need the allways online so the developers work with that just like kinect is with ever console now developer can work with that.

Apply_Logic says:

What about people who have limited internet data. I'm companies like ATT and Comcast allowing you to use only 250GB a month. Constantly downloading 10 to 15 GB of data to play a game Is surely a nightmare.

jgbstetson says:

They will still sell discs.

textomatic says:

Do you buy more than 10 games a month?  If not, don't worry about it.

dqgeek says:

I think some of the animosity comes from those who say, "I bought the game, I should be able to do with it what I wish!" This comes from a misunderstanding of the purchaser regarding what he has actually bought. He/she bought the physical media, but almost from the beginning of the modern computer age, the purchaser has never bought the rights to the intellectual property (software) on that media. All of that is contained in that "little" End User License Agreement that is included in pretty much every bit of software you buy today, but few people actually read. The creator/company always retains the ownership of the code, you just purchased a license to use/play/create with the code. The creators are within their rights to do what they need to do to prevent the unauthorized use/spread of their intellectual property.
However, I do agree with those who say the 24 hour connection limitation is a bit stringent and some type of system needs to be in place to allow those whose internet may be out for prolonged periods to have a manual bypass. Perhaps as some have suggested, a generated code that you call in to Microsoft who then gives you another code to enter into the X1 to allow for offline gameplay of single player or same machine multiplayer games.

Zer0fluX says:

Exactly. Digital products are not, and have never been, the same as physical products. Any analogies comparing the two are inaccurate and do not apply.

ZeroAE says:

Now they need to adress the publisher requeriment and the forced Kinect to clear up all the confusion.
Which I doubt they will, but still.
I mean, I really want to like the One, but it has a hubris the size of the Titanic..

james v says:

Am I the only one even after reading this article I still hate restriction on xb1? Like your friend can't play borrowed game unless he's in ur account for 30 days? And you can give lend it for only once? You serious guys?

Apply_Logic says:

Tell your friends to pay 60 bucks and buy one.

Apply_Logic says:

I personally hate GameStop for selling and reselling used games.I think Microsoft could have done a better job with the 24hours check in. Plus internet service is reliable everywhere.

alex6272 says:

Whatever happened to buying a game and actually owning it (well, owning a copy that is)? At least with disks/cartridges you would actually own the game and be able to take it wherever whenever and sell or trade it as you pleased. Yes, letting a ton of people borrow your copy is bad for developers but many people who borrow games just buy a copy anyways if they like it. Microsoft is giving Sony the edge here with all the DRM and complications that will only serve to confuse consumers.
By the way, I don't really care for how Steam does it either. I vastly prefer having a physical copy, as old fashioned as that may sound 

ladydias says:

Nothing wrong with that. My husband and I are the same way and will probably skip the XBone this time around. We are gamers first and the way they are handling this is silly. I wish more publishers would take Nintendo's stance which is to make games good enough that people don't really want to trade/sell them. I know people here are excited but I also know that most have no idea of just how important used games are in the grand scheme and so many people ignore the fact that used games are so popular for one very small but important fact. If you don't like it, you can return it and get your money back. Buying a new game means you are permanently out $60 if you don't like it.

trezzer says:

Valve has a motivation to keep backwards compatibility and activation servers so they can sell the same games again and again. When Xbox Two is out and games are made for that, what motivation does MS have to keep activation servers online for Xbox One? Original Xbox Live is dead with no way to reacquire DLC. Why should Xbox One be different? And why should games be sold at console prices in that case? They are not a long term game purchase. In 20 years I will most likely not be able to revisit Xbox One games as I am today with my NES or C64 games.

majohnny says:

I think if the deactivate said games they will take measures for that. For example disabling the check for those games or something, though I don't think they will shut those games down in the near future. And who knows how long this check system goes or what they implement next. Another thing, I'm not sure if I would like to play one games in some years. I don't think it gives you the same (what's the word, the connection to old times) as the snes and n64. Though they shouldn't shut the one off though. The problem is, noone can see what's happening in the future. How long will the One live, will there even be consoles after the One or will you maybe be able to play games of the One on the 'Second One' ;-)

majohnny says:

Exactly what I'm thinking. Especially the steam part is what people seem to forget. I also never resell my games and my 360 is always connected anyways, so I have no problem with those restrictions. I would like to add though, that game stop often doesn't give you the amount of money your game should be worth, and I think that won't get better if you have to go to them now(just adding for people which actually sell their games, never did). I also know that some of my friends are always offline with their 360s. But wouldn't hurt to connect it, would it. Everyone has WiFi nowadays so it isn't much of a hassle to connect your console too. One of my friends has a flashed one and though I don't support this if they achieve to exploit the One (love that name) they can stay with them offline,too, so it doesn't even bother those people.
Sorry for the large comment but another thing I would like to say. To the whole Kinect discussion, I remember the same rent when the last Kinect came out and in the end everybody who got one got used to it anyways. In the Kinect always connect thing we have to keep the developers in mind. Now they can really use the features of the Kinect because they know anyone has one. Before it was a big mess, some had one, others didn't, so the developers sometimes used functionality but mostly didn't, because they couldn't use it for too serious stuff foe the people that had none. I think that's a big point and people complaining should also consider the situation of MS and the developers. Once again sorry for the really big comment and thanks for reading ;-)

BigwaveMx says:

Suppose this: I hate playing videogames, but my son love do it. And my son doesn't want to play any game online (multiplayer match). He plays Halo 3, Halo ODST and Halo 4 as single player. But now, he can play Halo 1 in the new console and seems to look better than the first halo on the first xbox (black xbox).  Maybe in my country, specifically in my old town, i don't have any chance to get internet. How much bandwith data do i need to pass the verification? I already have a phone with internet and i can share it with the xbox but i can't spend all my data plan on the console.

spadX says:

You need ADSL. High speed internet or higher. Because you will have to install consol update and game update ( often as you think) they want you to have a good connection. Maybe in one year MS will allow you to only ping their servers for identification only, without having to do update at the moment, using you cellphone shared internet... Who knows? I dont

Sunofabob says:

What about GameFly? That's what I care about. Most of the games I play are used from GameFly. I don't agree with paying full price second and third tier games.

pompeyladbfp says:

MS is bad m'kay..

matfantastic says:

I will be going ps4 this fall. This is coming from an MS fanboy. Maybe when they drop the price and eliminate the 24 hour check in I'll pick one up. Also don't like everything being locked behind live gold subscriptions.

turbo8227 says:

Preach it Michael!!! Now let the church say Amen! I thought I was the last sane person on earth. I want a next generation console. Not a slight upgrade.

hutuka says:

Yo Microsoft! Hire Michael to be your PR Manager!

Another potential benefit of MS system is that there could be more deals and cheaper games like on Steam when publishers do not need to make all their money on the first sale anymore. 

Racxie says:

There are some good and bad points to the whole DRM issue, and the problem with this article is it's very biased/unbalanced. I'm too tired right now to go into detail but personally to me the bad outweigh the good. Only thing is that I'm a hardcore gamer so I play games regardless of format and the only way I can play all the good exclusives is by owning every console so I'll be getting one regardless (and good exclusives is definitely the Xbone's strongest selling point), that I'm a bit of a collector and want to own every console.

unit_three says:

I understand it and I still disagree with it.

I'm a pretty diehard MSFT fan (surface pro, wp8 owner, Xbox w/ gold subscription) but I've preordered a PS4. I hope it bombs the first year and they roll back the restrictions.

clay113 says:

Great article, hit it the nail on the head.

spakbaz says:

I think sony is sneaky here. how could they be DRM free? its like someone can copy the disk and sell it online for 1$???

spadX says:

Omg we are so happy to have finally the "rights" to share out game.... Wait! Why didnt have seen cops at my ebgames store?

Well I play my games and trade them in, in my case if a majority of the developers decide that they are going to not allow trades. I would just be a lot more picky and wait until the games have been out awhile and go down in price before purchasing. I have pre ordered the Xbox already but the game situation does cause me some concern. I know a lot of u are stating that many people don't trade their games, I have to disagree. In this economy $60 is a decent chunk especially for those of us like myself who buy 4 or more games a month.

gilesjuk says:

Even if you don't trade in games, you at least have the option to buy used if you aren't sure about a game.

Panik21 says:

WOW thank u! people out there need to understand this they just believe what idiots say on youtube. there is soo much hatred against the X1 im still getting one i understood everything since day one...

Houdani says:

Sharing a game with up to 10 other people is possibly the most underappreciated benefit of the new box.  It’s way more convenient than walking the disc around, and accessible even if the disc is missing.

But let’s not forget why the Steam model works.  It’s the combination of ease of use and fantastic prices.  (Note that indie games are a big part of that “fantastic price” statement.  Hint, hint.)  If MS really wanted to resonate with consumers, they would drop the price of new release AAA games by $15-$20.  In theory, they would make up the difference in revenue by selling a greater volume of non-used games, right?  Steam-like sales events (summer & holiday) would foster a lot of good will, too.

As for the price of the box:  Just drop it to $450 immediately, then sit back and watch the furor subside.

If MS hopes to lure folks out of their comfort zone, then they need to make the new reality as appealing as possible.

andrejhoward says:

Yeah when I heard the Steam argument I balked.  They are doing things similar to Steam but no where near as good.  Steams prices, customer support and their library are always going to be much better.  
Even AAA titles dip on steam really quickly and within a year that hit a sale for at leat a day they'll be 5 bucks.  
And ohhhh the indie games.  Serious Microsoft you say your doing this for developers why aren't you supporting the little guy. 

gilesjuk says:

No drm is good. Xbox one makes apple seem liberal.

NosRokanaske says:

Good article, but i still feel like MSFT still has to clear some information up in general because some of the information is slightly vague.
I like digital downloads because i dont have to go driving and waste gas, but the digital version has to have something, whether it be exclusive content (though i typically don't like this, but generally dont care) or a cheaper price, because if they're the same price I'd much rather get a hard copy with a case and manual. Plus, it makes reinstalling much easier and faster. So maybe this needs to be further addressed.
Sharing with friends and family seem really iffy to me. I question what are the limitations to this because based off this and other websites you can share with anyone on your friends list and up to 10 family members. My question is how are they going to determine who is in your family? Also, Is there going to be a restriction to anyone who wants to access your games must have XBL Gold? For the family one, is it going to internet based, PayPal/Credit linked, or a combination of both? If it's internet based, if your brother has to move because of college or work, he is pretty much screwed. Is it a single PayPal/Credit thing, shouldn't there almost a incentive to go to a family plan be it 10% cheaper or something. But if thats true, what stopping 10 people from using one PayPal account where everyone just sends money to the PayPal. So that needs to be slightly cleared up. For sharing with friends, i really like the idea but again i do feel that they need to elaborate more because it does feel like its screwing a developers and publishers. Assuming $50/game, instead of getting $350 for 7 players, they would get $50 for 7 people because only one of the 7 people need it buy it and the other 6 just needs to have the guy on thei friends list for I am assuming 30+ days. Just my thoughts on this issue.
For 24-Hour check ins, i dont mind it because im primarily a PC gamer so i have to deal with steam/origin and i am fortunate enough to live in a part of the world that has reliable and fast internet (sadly no google fiber) that chcking in doesnt bother me. I feel 24 hours is a bit too steep, maybe expand it to at least every 3 or so days. Steam offline kinda sucks balls, but again i live in a palce that has reliable internet so i dont mind. I do like the Steam DRM vs Origin DRM because at least with Steam there are a shit ton of sales (Spring, Summer, Autumn, and Winter Sale) and there's Greenmangaming where i can get even more sales.
Agan, mainly want them to address these. I'm still sticking with PC gaming, but it would be good to know about these so when/if i decide to get one of the new console, i know which one. Probably going to get the PS4 because the PSVita  remote play function sounds pretty damn cool if it is something like checking once to make sure you actually have the game then being able to play it for as long as you want on the Vita. Thats pretty sweet. Most likely, sticking with PC.

FearL0rd says:

I hope this help MIcrosoft gets advantage in the games with exclusives, because if the Developers release the Game for PS4 and XBOX simultaneously. I will go for a PS4 this time.
If the developers think about this they should give microsoft all priorities...

A great article and a great discussion in the comments on this post. This is why I come to this sight everyday.

Still not buying the internet goes out about once every two months and stays out about a week, and I won't be able to play minecraft

blak_yakuza says:

Could someone elaborate on region restrictions ?  As I live in the  Caribbean .... will Xbox1 work here ?

Martinspire says:

I found the point that Cliffy B made with his tweets the other day, also hitting an important note: Games for the next generation are going to be more expensive then now where a no-drm policy will make developers go bankrupt

Kurtis Fox says:

Still waiting for the "benefits" section of this article to appear.  
You can go to a friend's house and sign in with your gamertag, but then you're going to have to download your games if you want to play them.  That's GB's of data you're filling up on your buddy's console.
Used games are dead.  Just like how you said PS4 developers can choose to put their own type of DRM in place (Sony and Ubisoft have already denied uPlay bullshit though), most publishers will choose not to allow used games sales for their XBOX One games.  This is a choice Microsoft is allowing.  There is no standard system of participating retailers.  That's only for first party Microsoft published games.  Everything else is still up in the air.
Now, to address the STEAM hypocrisy claims.  It's not hypocritical of STEAM users to lament console DRM for physical copies of games.  It IS hypocritical, however, to complain about digital purchases being infused with DRM.  But with the XBOX One, if I go out to a store and buy a game disc, I STILL have to put up with DRM!  That is what people are complaining about.  If my internet provider goes down, if I'm gaming on my XBOX One, I'm screwed.  With STEAM, I can still play offline, for like, a month.

Zer0fluX says:

Spot on article. The fact is there are only four reasons for choosing PS4 over Xbox One: 1. You can't afford or won't spend $499 for a game console; 2. You don't have a reliable Internet connection or never play online; 3. You must have the PS4 exclusive titles; 4. You hate Microsoft and won't buy their products. In every other objective way Xbox One either beats or ties the PS4. Feature-for-feature, and value against value, Xbox One is the better choice, and I think the market will reflect its superiority within a year of its release.

ade333 says:

how long are you allowed to play your games while signed into a friends console?

Can someone at your home be playing the same game at the same time you are playing it at a friends house?

Since I can have 10 ppl on an account, what stops me from making 9 accounts and giving them to my friends to sign into their consoles with when they want to play games I bought?

andrejhoward says:

My only problem is every one of your articles is about how great Microsoft is but you say it in a way that makes you come off as not being a fan boy.  
I've read a ton of your articles and while informative at times and well written you are clearly biased.  So I have to take whatever you say with a grain of salt. 

tony1213 says:

Great article! I think a lot of people will change their ill feelings towards the Xbox One now. Im Sri getting me the One!

SmoothDog says:

Great article. Well written and clear. My thoughts you put on paper beautifully.

Lx23 says:

Nice attempt at clarifying most of the misunderstandings. However, from what I'm reading, people still have issues with the Xbox One. These days perception = reality. Microsoft should have handled this whole thing better. They are actually introducing the better console from an innovation standpoint. Their bad implementation, once again, is going to cost them a lot.

Now, I believe I understand the reason MS introduced all these restrictions and because I do not want to deal with all that, I'll be getting a PS4. It's just much simpler and that's what I want. People need to respect other people's choices even when they disagree with them.

NosRokanaske says:

Just like you i believe i understand why they're implementing this system, but when i buy a gaming console, i am primarily going to use it for gaming. If i want NetFlix, Hulu, or Youtube i would get my laptop and plug it in via HDMI. Plus the interface is a lot cleaner on a laptop anyway. Integration of those features into consoles is pretty sweet, but i have yet to use it on a console because of the clunky interface. 

Zenpharaoh says:

This is what I've been trying to explain to ppl but they just won't listen. Microsoft is not out to get you. Fair is fair, the developers don't get $1 from used games. People then say: " idc about that, they still sell millions, they get their money!" then tell me why the new tomb raider sold over 1 million copies and square enix (publisher) still lost money on it. These are the reasons why we see the same ol' thing year after year with every new game, dlc, etc... I want better games, better studios making better games, new studios, and NEW GAMES! this is how that will happen. Cliffy B (gears of war creator) just let out a statement of how crucial it is for the sale of second hand games to stop, it kills the industry, this is a fact. if you love gaming and love the ganes you play, then you should have zero issues.Hate if you want but its the truth. The innovation doesn't start until the game industry goes down this path. Grow up, accept change for the better, and above all #dealwithit. Xbox One pre-ordered.

FearL0rd says:

If they dont get anything from used games. they should stop making PS4 games...

Graven Pshya says:

Let's say you lose your internet connection. How about using Xbox Smartglass on your L920 using the phone network to sign in and check? And resume? Or do that automatically. Gah. Idk.

this i love this!!! i wouldnt mind checking in on my WP8 device while still playing offline on the X1

InlineV says:

Sustainability in this market is driven by developer support. If anything, what Microsoft has done here is brilliant because developers and publishers won't need to deal with DRM themselves thereby making the X1 platform more desirable than other alternatives. Beyond that, I'll just say that I didn't preorder my X1 because I'm a gamer. My daughter probably will on occasion but that wasn't the point. All I had to see was the AV control, video switching and gesture / voice support along with the CLEAN transitions between one to the other and I was hooked. Extensibility through Microsoft's cloud (eg... Clustering) makes it that much more appealing. This thing could replace people's PC's in some cases. The fact that it will be the third screen with support for other services I already use makes it a no brainer. Frankly, Sony could be in a world of hurt one of these days. Microsoft is expanding the Xbox brand into new markets while they drive adoption for more services in ways that no one else can. Their strategy is somewhat awe inspiring when you think about it. I simply cannot imagine that this would have an appeal to me if they had built nothing more than another game console. As for DRM, get over it and stop whining. You have to pay to play. If you have a problem with companies protecting their assets from theft, round up all jack offs that you know who has pirated copyrighted material and bury them in a shallow grave. Only problem is that most of the whiners would probably have to bury themselves.

This is an excellent article and it spells everything out in a concise manner. The uproar will die down soon enough, especially when game manufacturers put  DRM's on their individual games for the play station.

Samst22 says:

Because of the DRM, it allows digital downloads for xbox one to be potentially much cheaper than the ps4 games, similar to steam prices, this is because microsoft doesn't have to worry about multiple licences, and free trading between friends, and so the developers are more likely to agree to a lower price, where on ps4, the developers want extra money due to the fact that the licence is not restricted. 
Also the DRM allows xbox one games to be traded in to the retail stores for higher value than the equivilant ps4 game. Hence it's win win really. All it means is that there will be no more private selling, like ebay.

mysterioso74 says:

FINALLY!!!!  A voice of reason...thanks for clearing things up for me...Now I am all in, just ordered my XBoxONE from Amazon.

MoeHd7920 says:

Ms should at least make it so users Primary Xbox needs a connection to the internet every 7 days that way people can take their Xbox on vacation not worry about needing an internet connection. When gamers invest $500 I'm sure they want to know they can use in when ever and where ever.

cesar ruiz1 says:

All my friends are like, don't buy the Xbox one its sucks to many restrictions its always online I've been trying to explain to them but its like talking to a wall. I really don't care I already pre ordered my xone and still sticking with my 360.

I love the article explains it very good I never lend my games out anyways I only share with my kids but I would get upset about them scratching the disc now. I don't. Have to worry about that I'm going to pre-order my Xbox one with titan fall battlefield 4 deadrising 3

First I would like to say that sony did an interview after their show and was very specific that the single player portion of the game will in no way have any DRM, the explicitly said that developers will have rights to do as they please with multiplayer as they already currently do but they are not allowed to impose DRM on any single player portion of the game.. This is no different then today which is exactly what they said. What Ms said,is that restriction and any fee with that for single player is up to the publisher and so u may or u may not be,able to trade it in. The same goes for lending the game which u overlooked and its for the entire game not just one part of it.

now I have internet 99.9% of the time and my problem with checking in is nit with internet my problem is with the servers or have we all forgot the SimCity debacle? I would be more than upset if I couldn't play any games because the Ms server got hammered, or hacked or dos attack

I always trade in my used games. I use that as credit to buy the new copy of the new game I want. I only by used copies of games when I am between my new games and there was a game, I was sort of interested in but not enough to buy for $59.99. If there is no used copy I won't buy it anyway.

so, I am going from xbox360 to ps4 not because the system is better but because I will not support this kind of DRM, I purchased a product and I should be able to do with this product as I see fit within the bounds of the law and I will back that up with my wallet

JamesDax3 says:

Wow, this well written article explains everything nicely and people are still crying.  What a bunch of selfish brats.

mango.lover says:

Over 300 comments? I guess that means there must have been dissent.

HM02 says:

For me, personally, I always have an internet connection, so that's not a problem.
I never lend xbox games, so that's not a problem.
Like one article said about the worrying of 'checking in' once a day, we do that all the time with UNKOWN developers for apps we download on our phones, to access location, texts, etc, so that shouldn't be a problem.
Kinect 'always on,' not a problem, you can disable the wake up voice recognition and I can just turn the kinect around facing the wall and not be worried about the NSA or something.

RockmanNeo says:

The thing is it feels like they keep having their way with us. I'd say bring the good faith, start with ending your paywalling (e.g. XBOX Live Gold for Netflix) and we keep our faith in you.

RayWP7 says:

So I won't be able to sell and trade games for my XB1 like I can for games I buy on Steam, Origin, etc?? Oh, wait,.i can't do that either. This is what MS meant by saying they are just introducing a console business model that is in line with what is already happening. This isnt news, this is simply the future. Whether you accept that or not is a personal issue.