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.



There are 682 comments. Sign in to comment

RenatoFontes says:

Exactly my thoughts.

carlosrdd says:

There was some anonymous Microsoft engineer who went on a rant about this last night lol. Just google it funny stuff....

glassadam says:

Funny, but really good and informative. MS should find a way to get that same info out to the masses, or at least make that pastebin doc go viral. Something!

Graven Pshya says:

I've been doing some research on that anonymous tip, but it may be fake.

peachy001 says:

He mentions the lower prices. If One games are £15 - £20 cheaper due to this then they can turn the hate around.

They probably won't be lower than $60 at launch (even AAA Steam games are launched at $60) but I think their path will help them lower the prices quicker than PS4 can, and provide some great sales/deals as well eventually.

Razioer says:

Steam games are only 60$ because of GameStop. GameStop basically says to publishers "If this is cheeper on steam, we wont stock your game".
And GameStop has a similar agrement with MS about Xbox games, this includes that there must be a 2:1 ratio of digital:physical copys of every Xbox 360 game, or GameStop wont stock the games at all.

I understand that, GameStop's policies aren't the most gamer friendly. 
Could you explain your ratio point a bit further. I'll admit its before 6 am here so I may just be reading it wrong, but are you trying to say that certain games cannot be digital? or that there has to be at least 2 physical copies of a game to for Gamestop to sell? 

Steam is able to (now at least) reduce the game prices faster than retail stores do, and offer good sales as a result. Whether or not this will be where the X1 ends up, I think this is where Microsoft is trying to take it.. their end game seems to be to for consoles like steam is for PC's. Also, people forget that Valve is making a steambox, if Microsoft didn't choose the route it did with then the steam box would dominate in digital distribution, and that would be bad for gamers on as a whole (not that steam box would do well, but any single product dominating the industry would be bad)

lancguy says:

Except, game stop doesn't have any PC games in the store at all. They use to have a huge selection years ago. Then they dropped down to a 3 foot rolling unit, now they have nothing. They don't even buy back PC games any longer.

alphaxi3 says:

Who goes to gamestop.  Everything they sell is overpriced, except the games and that only because they can't overprice them.  Only idiot kids who don't know any better go there.  Anything they sell, except games, you can get cheaper somewhere else.

codylew says:

Prices drop extremely fast on Steam though. Furthermore, Steam does amazing deals all the time. I got Borderlands 2 for $20 just a month after release. I could never get that price for Xbox or PS. However, I could pay $60 on launch and play for a month then sell it for $40. That is no longer an option. I can sell it back to Gamestop yes but Gamestop is a complete ripoff and will give next to nothing for a game. To me the DRM thing is not a problem it is the rediculous prices that are being charged for games. If Xbox One games have good price drops and monthly deals like Steam then I may consider getting one but if not then I will stick with my 360 and Steam on PC.
On another note, I would really like to see Microsoft add support for the mouse and keyboard or a new controller. A controller like the Razer Sabertooth or a Scuf that has buttons that allow you to play games with out having to remove your thumbs from the sticks. I really like the idea of the Hori Tactical Assualt Controller for the PS3. I just wish there was a 360 version. However I do understand that this is a preference thing but I personally would like to chose between controller or m&k. Depending on the game i use both except on the 360 although I am currently saving to get a XIM3 to run with the Logitech G13 and mouse.

I think with the x86 architectures and WiFi-Direct you will see more 3rd party accessories for what you would like than we saw with the 360

peachy001 says:

Games have apparently been confirmed at $59.99. Which, I hear is the same as current prices.

Ticomfreak says:

No! We are Microsoft fans after all,we use Bing ;-)

james v says:

I love Microsoft products too but xb1 isn't getting my money until they take it easy on restrictions. There is nothing wrong with being a fan but because of restrictions I never bought any apple product after iPhone 4

chucky78 says:

How do you expect to have a digital experience where you don't have disk to play your games and be able to use any Xbox and share your library with 10 friends without the need to check for a license?

Rug says:

I've come up with a way for Microsoft to get out from under this...
Don't make the check-in necessary for ALL games.  Just make it a rule for games that you have made available for lending and games that were installed from disk.  All downloaded games work indefinately (or at least a year without checkin) on the console they were initially downloaded on (so long as they aren't marked for borrowing).  If you remove a game from your borrowed list, it goes back to working if your console misses a check-in.
This would also encourage downloads.  Also, they could just say they needed to clarify the 24-hour rule.
It's not perfect, but it's better than what's out there. 

KillaRizzay says:

Geez listen to yourself. Buy a PS4 and call it a day.

X1 or none! I'm a PC Gamer and I approve this message.

Skunkwurx says:

I'd also like to point out that it was "good guy Valve" that properly introduced DRM with half life 2... Couldn't even play campaign offline, and if there was a blip in your connection.... Cut off there and then.... Steam box is goin to be DRM 100%... Prolly even more restrictive... That leaves only ps4 DRM free... You think third party devs aren't gona see that and jump at the chance to close the market so the consumer has no choice but to buy DRM... The other reason they'll jump at the chance is they'll see Xbox, steam,PC,Wii u working with it and just implement it on all cross platform.... Anyone who thinks it isn't happening is an idiot

The world is ran by the internet.. Who honestly cares if you have to have internet in order to play a game? If it goes out maybe you should work on fixing it, or go outside and play a game of LIFE.

SirThoreth says:

Who honestly cares if you have to have internet in order to play a game?

Anyone in the military.  If you're not stationed in the continental US, you're pretty much unable to use an XBox One.
The 1/3 of the US that doesn't have broadband Internet:  yeah, they're going to have issues, too.

Wrong, if you're stationed in Afghanistan at a base with any type of satellite comms you can most certainly get a connection once every 24hrs.. It's not like back in 05 when we couldn't even get a call out.

tekhna says:

Armed forces internet blocks XBL. Have fun with that. 

Internet drops a lot over there but it's not impossible to get to nowadays, where'd you hear they block XBL? I personally have a friend that I mail a few games to each year that was serving and never heard that.

tekhna says:

Google it. The internet requirement is a giant F U to service members. 

Like I said you can get an internet connect to validate the Xbox at least every 24 hours.. Even in Afghanistan.

tekhna says:

You do not understand. 
XBox Live is blocked from armed forces internet. Armed Forces internet is not free, open internet. Many sites and services are blocked. 

As it stands right now it is not blocked, and as it stands most bases have a lounge that has free internet available when it is available. That's where 98% of our armed forces play Xbox, in the lounge.

MethodGT says:

Thing is, armed forces internet isn't the same internet the soldiers are personally using. The one with the restrictions is the one the government computers are connected to.

chucky78 says:

Here's the thing, you only need to make a connection once every 24 hrs. You don't need to game online. Plus you can use your phone to make that connection if that's an option.

beh1230 says:

I think 1/3 of the U.S. that does not have broadband internet is incorrect. I live in a state that most of the state does not have broadband, but most of the population lives where there is broadband (closer to cities).

NIST says:

I don't get to play games at work.

Ticomfreak says:

It works over dialup. Its a ping...

lippidp says:

So our big futuristic Xbox One has a modem? Right....

Ticomfreak says:

Dialup models are pretty cheap...

tmservo says:

Sure.. how do you propose connecting a dialup modem to the XBOX One?   Got a router that will manage it?  Plan on running a proxy off of a machine running a 56k modem?  And, FYI, it's more than a ping, it has to send and validate licenses, so it's not a micro-transfer.

starblade876 says:

Great! In that case, I won't have to hear them complain about it on the internet or try to play multiplayer online with their crappy/non-existent internet connections.

I'd much rather play life at the kitchen table, but to each there own lol!

jangula_99 says:

The game of life is much more fun. You can have sex and smell the flowers after.

Steve Nuzzo says:

They don't currently, EA just discontinued their use of it on current gen...

Very well written article. I've been preaching this exact stuff to X1 naysayers for days!

You, me, and the rest of the educated folk :) lol

Aka Aka says:

E3 is a PR and While Sony won round 1, there are still many many rounds left to go.

waraukaeru says:

You know, I keep hearing people say Sony "won" E3, but I watched both their press conference and Microsoft's. Sony doesn't have many exclusive titles, and the cavalcade of stuffy white guy executives presenting their stuff didn't exactly fill me with confidence that they give a rats-ass about what they are doing. They may have had the clever jabs with the DRM disc issue, but if you look beyond that their presentation was kinda lame. I didn't come away feeling like anyone won... except me. I'll stay out of the next gen water and catch up on all the AAA titles I've missed over the years when they go on ridiculous sales. Somewhere along the line I'll pick up a copy of Watchdogs. ^_^

ytazbddj says:

Now slight restriction and latter on they will impose full restriction, this is how they play. Before you know you are in their trap. This is our worst enemy.

That is sorta paranoid. The DRM is less restrictive than Steam. Did you read the article? You install the game disc and can play the game on any Xbox One console you access with your account. You can sell you're used games. Next gen won't have discs. Get used to DRM unless you want only free to play games.

Cut you liberatian BS its nt like MS and hove government are spying you... Tell that to google and grapple and ask yourself why you get so many penis enhancements spam

WebColin70 says:

Uncalled for: I'm generally libertarian and think this MS policy is fine. On net, I think it's a win and progress. I do worry some about the privacy aspects (especially with the Kinect combined with the Internet connection requirement combined with the NSA announcement that they are monitoring much of this), but MS has shown a much greater respect for user privacy than, say, Google, who makes the lion's share of their revenue by using the data in it's users' e-mails and search choices.
As a libertarian-leaning guy, aside from wanting limited government invasion in my life, I also believe in private property rights. That means I want authors/developers to have the maximum right to control the distribution of their hard work and investments. MS has now given them more options and more control. That's all MS has done here. If developers abuse this, now consumers can choose to buy other X1 games from other sources who don't enforce controls they don't like, so there's a clear market incentive on developers not to go so strict that most consumers won't buy their games. And, to set ther bar, MS has said that they will allow the games they publish to be resold at the "open" end of the range. This both sets a benchmark and provides a competitive incentive for the other publishers to do the same.

JasonH81 says:

+infinity. But you know internet rage, its contagious and it's still cool to hate Microsoft. I've informed people of Sony's slick tongue, but they have to read it for themselves. Sony won't have DRM restrictions on their 1st party titles, but third party can set whatever restrictions they want..... A total clusterfuck. Microsoft learned handily about fragmentation and lack of a unified game plan. Sadly Sony is still playing catch up. I hope they all do well and I will enjoy my preordered Xbox One.

Aka Aka says:

Actually the 3rd party DRM has always been allowed for 3rd party titles going back to the Xbox and PSX models so this isn't exactly something new. Third party publishers have always had the ability to implement forms of DRM such as the online registration that EA enforced with their titles this last generation. The real difference lies in the way DRM is implemented on each system . 
Microsoft has built a model where if the publisher wants drm they can have a serial # encoded into each disk that will automatically register with your console and keep the disk locked to it unless they participate in some sort of program. 
Sony on the other hand has no drm options built into the console itself meaning the publisher must implement a system for DRM on their side. 
TBH Both models suck. I do like Nintendo's approach to DRM wich has been if you make good games people won't sell them. Really it's the shitty or short games that line the shelves of your local gamestop games you would regret paying full price for in the first place. I think DRM is just going to make people be much more selective in what they purchase rather than actually putting more money in the hands of developers. 

JasonH81 says:

I know what you're saying, and I never fault the gamer for wanting to trade their game in. Now borrowing or selling it privately, I'm not to keen on because I seriously believe in supporting the devs/publishers. They work hard to bring us these experiences, and I think they should get the rightful recognition for their hard work. Gamestop on the other hand is largely to blame. When a new game would come out, they would give gamers massive incentives to beat and trade the game in quickly. Then they would line the shelves with those newly released used games, sell them for a lil cheaper alongside the new product and pocket all the money for themselves. In essence, they were cheating the developers and publishers. I mean, its a brilliant tactic, but it's also unfair and underhanded. I blame them and stores like them for the fall of so many developers and the lack of innovation from developers because they are now too scared to take a risk. And DRM is even more necessary now because you can pay the game without it being in the console tray. I'm kinda curios to know how Sony is going to handle that problem when they start doing more cloud computing next year. Will they prevent you from fully installing games to the HD or what?

exyaster says:

Thank god someone understands.

Exactly. Very good article. Nice to see someone spell it out.

Z10YkakPES says:

Ppl will be bitching even more after they buy ps4 and realize what they have, ill be right here with my Xbox One laughing

Sunofabob says:

Sony isn't being transparent. I just want GameFly support. Seriously.

mikefeero says:

I'm a ps3 guy so this doesn't change my mind. However, the way they have actually explained it makes it much more acceptable for everyone. The issue with it was the initial impression they gave everyone. If they had taken time to actually explain all of this then it would not have had the landslide that occurred.

mrpuny says:

Yeah, I'm not totally sold on the scheme Microsoft has chosen, but I can see positives in addition to the negatives.  Someone needs to send all the MS people who might ever speak in public - or write or approve a public statement - through a "cliche but true" course, starting with - and frequently revisting - "you never get a second chance to make a first impression."
I think this may be even more important than it would be just in the console market since now MS is rebranding all their entertainment (e.g. Music/Video) services as Xbox.  If they screw up the Xbox brand, it'll potentially spread across a huge swath of their products.

They did explain it. I understood the system perfectly after watching E3. People just have trouble with cognitive dissonance... Or they just need to get the sh*t out of their ears and listen.

NIST says:

Or just don't read Endgaget or the verge.

Rug says:

Think about what you are defending. This console is useless without the backend servers. If this is the policy, then the console should be free or close to free, as its a means to the content. Then, id have less of an issue with it.

Microsoft had been nothing short of arrogant this time around. Their comment of "well, if you don't like it, there's always the 360".

They've also given me no reason to stay in their ecosystem.

The other problem I have with this is that it really doesn't matter what I think. I have friends that are very much against this, and they're not getting one, so this leaves me in a predicament as well.

Whilst I'd like to take a stand against this with them and get a PS4, the games there just aren't as compelling.

I just think they made a mistake with this policy.

I don't think that the console the games were originally downloaded one should be victim to being disabled (like on the 360). This would be a non issue then. Just because its digital doesn't mean it has to be so inconvenient.

exyaster says:

I know exactly what I am defending. I'm defending a console that has adopted the Steam model that still contains sellable discs. Hate it all you want, but eventually PS will do the same thing. MSFT actually created something that works better than Steam. Albeit they had to have a "check-in." Seriously though, how often is your console not hooked up to the Internet? (Travelers and Troops aside, I know that sucks for them.)

Rug says:

My kids have taken the 360 to grandmas for the weekend and there was no Internet there.

The checkin is the source of most peoples hate here.

Tether from you cell?

Musicman247 says:

"(Travelers and Troops aside, I know that sucks for them.)"
Huh. That was there and you still commented.

exyaster says:

Microsoft doesn't have to cater to everyone. Obviously if you are traveling you are going to pick a console that fits your needs. However, if I want a console that allows me to access my content from anywhere then I think that's a great option. Don't hate a console (or anything else for that matter) just cause it doesn't cater to you.

I think the 'buy a 360' comment is a valid one, and is not arrogant. Fact is MS is now marketing and selling two consoles xbox one for the always connected experience, and 360 for those aren't/can't be always connected. They are still developing new content for the 360 and have announced some titles will release on both consoles.
There are valid reasons why always connected may not be an option for some, but clearly xbox one and its cloud enabled services is not the console for those customers. 360 is a great alternative and i see no issue in him making that recommendation to those customers. What should he have done, recommended the competition?

Rug says:

Ok, my bad. If I can play all the same games on the 360 as the One, then you're right, it wasn't arrogant.

Agent-P says:

Thank you, Michael, for this write up. There is so much misunderstanding about all this and I'm glad you're able to clear it up and explain it well. I'll be sending along this link to anyone that claims to understand the situation but actually doesn't.

You assume that dissenters are misinformed, but some of us are just unhappy with it. I know the situation of it, this stuff if not news. However, it is still a downgrade from the situation of the 360, in my opinion.

Agent-P says:

That's why I specified about people who aren't informed. Sure, some people are fully informed and still don't like it. That's understandable. I can agree with you that it definitely is a step down from the policies around the 360, but these ones don't bother me enough personally to not buy the Xbox One.

infosage says:

I'm at the exact same place.  I already bought my Day One device. 
Everyone following the devices this closely at announcement understands the situation, so assuming people don't understad sharing, etc. is pointless.  The article describes a nice fluffy bed, with great pillow, high thread count sheets, and a warm comfy blanket.  Unfortunately, there's that 24 hour spring jabbing you in the back.  Some people will avoid the whole setup to avoid the annnoying spring in the back, some will take the good with the bad. 

As I said in another post, Micrsoft blew the message and made a mess of things with an arbitary "24 hours then we cripple all games" choice.  That idea popped out of some dark stinky place and there have already been consequences.
1. Microsoft's "coolest" device took a huge black eye
2. Microsoft just reminded everyone of the "Evil Empire" emotions they held a few years ago.
3. The PS4 is now the "cool" device that all the "cool" game nerds will buy and recommend
4.  The Xbox franchise just lost it's chance to help make other struggling devices like Windows Phone and Surface "cool"
5.  In all likelihood, the PS4 is now going to kill the Xbox One at Christmas and they'll be hundreds of "Microsoft is Dead" stories this fall. 
If they only would have removed the "24 hours til we cripple all your games" restriction, or at least pushed it out, they could have avoided all the fallout and need to scramble and try to recover.  My fear is they will wait until everyone is saying the Xbox One is a failure to make changes.  By then, the gamers and game developers may be abandoning the device.

casualk says:

Developers will not abandon the Xbox One because Sony sold more units. Developers are the ones asking for these restrictions. What they will do is start to come out of the closet and speak up, you will start to hear stories from devs soon on blogs, TV, and Podcast explaining why they feel Microsoft is doing the right thing. 
The 24/hr check-in that most people are complaining about is almost laughable to me.
1st It is being done for the betterment of all games.
2nd even my satellite TV box check in every 24 hours now and I don’t hear people complaining about that. Yes that’s right every night at 3am the box updates.
3rd People really don’t understand how this check-in will work; it is not going to be when you start to play a game the Xbox One will say wait let me see if you own that game.  The check-in will happen overnight to update your system and make sure your game list hasn’t changed. That’s it. Most people will never know it checked-in.
4th I have read a lot of people saying that Microsoft should get out front and talk about this as much as possible, I disagree because when you put DRM on anything some people will never be happy so  why keep talking about it to have a small group of people keep putting a bad face on your product. The people that buy the Xbox One in the beginning will see that most of these talk about restrictions are nonsense and the word will spread through actual users. That is much better than anything Microsoft can say.
5th People that throw around the line that “Microsoft is Dead” have no clue. First they don’t know what the breakeven point is for the Xbox One. So it really doesn’t matter one bit if Sony sell more units at first if Microsoft turns a profit first.
6th This ties in to 5 but Microsoft said over a year ago that the next Xbox would be profitable from start unlike the Xbox 360 which they sold at a lost for years.
7th Most people that are complaining about the DRM are gamers but what I have seen in real life just yesterday was my sister in-law who could care less about video games ordered 2 Xbox Ones to control her televisions. And I repeat she don’t play video games at all.  

Kellzea says:

The 24 hours thing is integral to the system. Its not even a bad restriction. Your phone doesn't work at all without internet, try using an iPad without internet, see how much fun Facebook is without a connection. Things need the internet, tgats the end of it.

But in exchange for this "massive penalty" that wont actually affect anyone. You get to use your games anywhere without a disk. Your family and friends get to use your games without a disk. You get instant switching, multiple games playing at once.

All for the hefty price of something you were gonna do anyway.

Thomas Wilk says:

I saw an interesting idea to rectify the potential for the 24 hr check in if you fail to have internet for more than a day.  Imagine you would be able to still play the game if you had the original game disc on hand.  This would essentially verify you're still the owner.  If you don't have the disc, you probably don't own it anymore.  Once you can check in, you can lose the hard disc again.  This will work for disc purchases, but not for the download only games.  Just an idea.

WebColin70 says:

I had that thought too -- that would be a great compromise. While I generally support the overall MS policy, I do think the 24-hour check-in is a pretty serious negative. I think at MS, they may have a distorted view of how universal Internet access is. Or, maybe they just have market data that something like 95% of current XB360 users have Interenet and figure it's an acceptable limitation...

ReverendSlim says:

Or maybe unlike Sony, they're betting on the future, not what people have now.  With efforts like Google Fiber, Project Loom and the FCC offering tax breaks to companies that expand infrastructure, the U.S. should reach full saturation in the next few years.
Not that I'm knocking Sony...  They'll make a great console that will give people the status quo features that they expect.  But if you look back at Microsoft and what they have offered, think about how much of that is ubiquitous expectation now.  The original Xbox caught flak for having ethernet and no modem...  Then Xbox Live proved why they did that.  The Xbox 360 allocated enough memory for the guide and resident OS for them to add features like 7-person party chat, whereas Sony promised to bring party chat to PS3 and never could because they had already burned through their memory allocation for the system features.  Xbox Live itself is pretty much the model that Sony adopted for PSN, though it is still not as robust as Xbox Live.  Now, it looks like PS4 will have the equivalent service to what Live on the 360 has offered for years, including the paywall to play online.  While they're doing what Microsoft has already done, Microsoft is introducing asychronous matchmaking that works in the background outside of games and then notifies you a match is ready while you're doing something else. 
Sony has a history of giving gamers the status quo, whereas Microsoft takes risks on innovation.  Look at Kinect on 360.  They gambled...  24 million units and a pretty nice library of games later, it paid off.  Compare that to what Sony has done with their camera system over the last two generations, where they have really had very few games for them.  Now, here we are again with them making PSEye optional to the PS4...  whereas Kinect 2 is packed in with the system for Xbox One.  By doing so, Microsoft is ensuring that developers will know that the install base is 100% for Kinect and they can innovate with new types of controls, including controller + Kinect stuff like they showed at E3.  What did Sony show?  Vacuuming up virtual characters with a controller.  And given the low number of people who seem to be interested in the PSEye, you can bet that developers won't take the financial risk to make games for it, whereas Kinect will have a built-in market.  Stagnation vs. innovation.  Sony is giving gamers what they want, like they always have...  Microsoft is trying to give gamers what they're going to come to expect over the next few years.  And then Sony will put all of that into PS5, I suppose. 

WebColin70 says:

That's a fair point -- leadership can require providing something people don't know they want and pushing the envelope of technology. However, the reason that's leadership and why not everyone does it is because there are risks. By definition, that means sometimes those risks don't pay off, and the company, intending to lead, falters for the gamble. Anyone remember Microsoft Bob, the paper clip in MS Office, the Kin predecessor to Windows Phone, or the graveyard of various applications that MS started and then ditched because they failed (MS Money comes to mind)? Don't forget, MS also bet on HD-DVD over Blu-Ray. But that's why the great market leaders deserver our respect, for taking those risks and getting it right more often than wrong.
In this case, I would say there is also a customer service aspect -- it's not like MS's move here will drive broadband adoption, like networks offering shows in HD helped drive widespread HD purchases (and MS and Sony offering game systems that supported it). Broadband usage is mainly limited by access to broadband. In many places, you just can't get it, no matter how much you are willing to pay. That makes this the first game system to be unusable by millions of prospective customers.
Given that there are solutions that protect the publishers from theft w/o this draconion requirement, it's more than just bypassing those millions of people, it smacks of not caring about their previously loyal customers. The caring company would at least appear to try to find a way to support those users who simply can't get Internet access.
Note that overall, I support their current plan and think it will help move things forward, especially the Kinnect for general media control, but I think on this aspect, they have made a mistake. For their sake, I hope they back off on the 24-hour Internet check-in requirement before launch.

lemonsteveo says:

Its an upgrade for me, I hate swapping discs even though you know the game is on the system.

Agree with a lot of what you said. I did wonder how many people actually sell their games. As a PC gamer too, much of the Xbox one restrictions didn't bother me.

I stopped trading/selling this generation. It bothered me that I paid full price for games, only to get a small percentage of it back from GameStop. Achievements helped in that I would go back and play older games every once in a while to try and earn the ones I missed. I stopped buying physical discs last year and stuck to games on demand and I plan to do the same with the XB1

_Emi_ says:

thats the thing! it was usually not legal to resell or give your game to another person!.
now with this DRM Microsoft wants for Xbox, they are giving you rights to do that! because it would be finally legal the way Microsoft wants it.
in PC games is hard to find a non drm game, and well you cant sell them, like steam, ios, android, win8, wp, you buy and you cant share or resell anything, so microsoft is really trying to give users rights in this generation, but still having a drm like steam. this drm can bring good deals in xbox one games, and make publishers pay more attention for xbox one since they win, and consumers win.  

I know people might think the 24 internet check in would be bad...but alot of games now require you to be always online to even enter the solo mode. its a double edge sword but i think it will work when people see the benefits of this kind of uniform DRM across all Xbox one games.

BlobDude says:

Just to address your first point, it is very legal to resell, lend, or do whatever you want with your games. The only thing that's not legal is to take the content itself, copy it, and sell or distribute the copies.

lancguy says:

Think again, you have a right to the media the game is on, you don't always have a right to the content on that game. For several years now Microsoft has limited the number of different cpu/motherboard combo. And they always had an online certification check when you activate. Other forms of software technically are even more restrictive. They just didn't have a method to verify ownership.

Jrexxx says:

The thing is that most people are in outrage for the principle, not for the act of being able to trade games in itself. (I think? :P)

Probably, yes. Gamers can still trade with a friend though, just not the entire town.

montysan says:

People might be annoyed by the princle, but the logic of your 24 offline limit arguement is also flawed.
Discs will come with a code (like a prepaid code) so that they're effectively the same as a download. You redeem that code when you install it. It should then be like a download on the 360; you can play it offline without restriction (local license), you can play it on a different console if you're signed in(roaming license), with the added benefit of a 'family member' being able to play it on a different machine ( with a new family license). Online checks, if done properly, should only be required for roaming and family license checks. Search google for details about 360 local and roaming licenses... you'll find stuff on the microsoft website.
If they allow resale, then they just have to make an owner unregister the original code on the original console itself, which would ensure that the game is uninstalled. The store you take it to then check with Microsoft that the code has been unregistered. I love the idea of no discs needed, and am not bothered by resale, but the 24 hour limit is not needed. Microsoft might have gone down that route, but it's not needed for this to work. I've signed up to many sites to make this point because no one else is explaining why it's needed in detail, and i feel passionately about both xbox and our rights to play offline.

Zeeshan360 says:

MS should allow offline if disc is in the drive ..
For disc less gaming 24 hr check is mandatory or else people would sell the disc and still playing :P

montysan says:

Not really, because if you bought a prepaid card, you can't give that same card to someone else to download, because it has been used. You have to be online to install/download a game, so it generates the local license (and encrypts the local file) so that only you can play it, even if you copy the file to another machine. The 360 already does this. On Xbox One, the disc is just a quick way to download the game data... the value is in the code. My guess is you'd be able to borrow someones disc, but buy the game online via your console, which means you get your own license direct from microsoft, rather than on a card in the box.
However, requiring the disc for offline would also be an extra check they could do easily. I'm almost never offline, but in the UK, if your provider ,esses up, it can be for a long time.

This is exactly what i think they should do no disc requires a check but if you have the disc in the drive no need as the cert is on the disc... Simple and they need to do this and tell everyone now.

peachy001 says:

I had considered this too. Thought that it was a major chink, and the bit people hated most. Surely an Arcade game should not require a 24hr check, unless you can trade those too, or give to friends?

My internet has not been off in 5 years, but I still worry that it could, for any number of reasons, including me turning it off.

Alloying my family to play all my games on any console, to me is a huge plus. One of my kids lives with her mum for half the week. This could actually allow her to play me games at her mum's, which is superb. Given the number of families in similar situations to mine, I think MS has done a great thing. This does of course open up the system to some serious abuse, although I am sure there are measures in place to stop a group of 10 friends sharing 1 game.

Trading and selling games, I do trade and sell from time to time. Picked up numerous 2nd hand games too.

Where I think they could score a win with this is the price of the games. If their RRP was significantly lower, as it sure must be given the limits, then people would buy in to this DRM thing immediately. They could very easily drastically reverse the bad feeling and score a win over PS4. The low prices are always sited as Steam's huge selling point.

montysan says:

It's great that they're trying to do this, but it's not that different to allowing me to play my own game downloads on another machine if I'm signed in, which I can currently do on the 360. It's just an extra step for Microsoft to say that member is ok. My issue is with making the original machine have to sign in every 24 hours, which shouldn't be necessary. I will happy give that position up if it's explained to me properly.
Also agree that making the games cheaper, and not allowing resale would have been much better. People should pay to play I think, but not at the prices they currently charge for games. Make the games cheap enough that you can have consistent prices, and you could have subscription models where you pay per month to play any game.

badMojo69 says:

30 day friends.

Ryan_Nichol says:

The main thing that would bother me is that without internet it is branded as useless WTH not hating but that's a pretty big flaw when you think about it

Ryan, you are right - it can be annoying for a select majority. As for that aspect, I wanted to try and explain WHY it is that way.

TheSuperShoe says:

I love what Microsoft is doing with the Xbox, and the one thing that would be annoying is the check. I don't think it's unreasonable for Microsoft to allow Downloaded games offline or the disc in the tray for physical games. But once connected, this requirement could be removed.

montysan says:

Wait until people have an Xbox One and their interent goes out. You're going to hear lots of issues then! My worry is that the 24 hour isn't needed. I realise that it is a solution, but there are solutions that don't require it. The 360 already has one.... see my post above.

Bob101910 says:

How often does your internet go out for over 24 hours? Only times I've seen it happen are after major natural disasters. In that case, you probably shouldn't be playing games and rebuilding/repairing.

montysan says:

Personally, I've not had an outage since I last moved, but when I did move, it took over a month to get broadband going. The xbox was used a lot in that time. I've got friends here in the UK though who have had issues with their broadband going out, and it's taken weeks for the provider to fix it. It varies massively from place to place, from provider to provider, but many people don't get much choice. Just because you don't have problems, doesn't mean no one else does. I find it frustrating, because there just hasn't been a good technical explanation for why it's really needed.

Thomas Wilk says:

Because the aim is to move to a system that all games eventually become disc free. With that, you need a way to ensure that you haven't sold your copy to another. They could fix this by retailers checking your MS account to see if you opted to sell it and cancel your copy. But if you're never online, once you buy the downloaded game, it's hard to see what you've done with your copy. Sell it, copy it, whatever. Huge potential for piracy at that point.

montysan says:

Yes, they're trying to do away with discs, which is fine when broadband becomes fast enough everywhere. Until then, discs are needed. This rest of this is pretty much copied from a previous comment I've made.. I'm getting fed up of typing the same thing. This is more "how it could be done" rather than what I think they're doing.
Discs will come with a code (like a prepaid code) so that they're effectively the same as a download. You redeem that code online on the console when you install it. It should then be like a download on the 360; you can play it offline without restriction (local license), you can play it on a different console if you're signed in(roaming license), with the added benefit of a 'family member' being able to play it on a different machine ( with a new family license). Online checks, if done properly, should only be required for roaming and family license checks. Search google for details about 360 local and roaming licenses... you'll find stuff on the microsoft website.
If they allow resale, then they just have to make an owner unregister the original code on the original console itself, which would ensure that the game is uninstalled. The store you take it to then check with Microsoft that the code has been unregistered. I love the idea of no discs needed, and am not bothered by resale, but the 24 hour limit is not needed. Microsoft might have gone down that route, but it's not needed for this to work. I've signed up to many sites to make this point because no one else is explaining why it's needed in detail, and i feel passionately about both xbox and our rights to play offline.

Main annoy, is that half of Earth will not be able launch ANY game.

Stuart Brown says:

They have a 300,00 unit Azure cloud, you can be sure as shit there'll be redundancy for the activation checks as well.

montysan says:

Thinking about this more, it would probably be possible for Microsoft to support people without internet as well. Assume the 24 hour limit isn't required, which I've talked about elsewhere here, the point of the online registration when you install a game is to set up the local license on the console. Now, it could be possible for someone who's offline to phone up Microsoft with the game code in the box and the console serial number. Microsoft then give them a one time use code back, which is asked for by the console when you install. Now, this might not work, or maybe they could add it later? It was just a thought.

WebColin70 says:

Yeah, just like the activation codes for Windows or MS Office -- they'll work automatically if connected, or you can call in and get the code by phone if not. Great point.

No, I totally agree. Even on PC, you can play games offline (as long as it isn't multiplayer).

dlusted says:

Actually you're wrong.... Games like Diablo 3 require an ONLINE connection to even play Solo....

And many PC games will be going this way too to stop piracy.

Not  to mention that steam needs to log into it's servers before you can play, but you can go into the 30 day offline mode

Zeeshan360 says:

You could just tether phone internet for few seconds ..
Many new games are blurring single and multiplayer like Watchdogs , Titanfall and Crew .. Playing offline would take away all the fun

MFmonster says:

Should male an app got that. Many folks with smartphones cannot tether or use their device to do that.

Yeah, agree. I think they are too used to the freedom of buying and trading games that they are quick to backlash without understanding the situation completely

firehouse31 says:

Daniel that was an awesome article. Even though I already pre ordered the system, you answered 2 big questions for me. Now my friends after reading your article have pre ordered theirs. (you should get a commission from MS) I mean Michael.. You did such a good job I thought it was Daniel :-)

Hi buddy. Daniel didn't write the article - I did. Glad you enjoyed it through. And I don't write to appease Microsoft, just help answer questions for the community. :)

Good job, been tryin to explain this to alot of people. They here they can't do one thing and miss the things they can do!

I have a question, how will they know the difference between a game that I gave a friend once and a game that was traded/sold at a game stop multiple times? How will they stop the friend I gave it to from giving it to someone else? If Microsoft isn't charging any extra fees on resold games what's the difference between a game being sold 10 times at a GameStop and it being passed 10 times amongst friends? Still no more money to the devs outside of the original sell.

PittaMan says:

I imagine 'give once' means you can't give the same game to more than one person. Once it is thiers, they can give it to whoever they want.
Pure speculation, but makes sense to me.

minhin says:

Actually now that I think about it, if you sell or give the game to your friend. Technically you can't sell that same game as you no longer have a copy.  Your friend / craiglist fella on the other hand, can still give it to his friend again.  The game license only apply to one gamertag account.
Although the game is installed in your hard drive, you can't play or sell it anymore because you give it to someone. 

Great article.. Do you have any contact with the team at xbox? If so could you put the point over that if the physical disc is in the drive check in can be offline from the disc??

Do you by chance have any answers for the few question I asked?

thinkdan says:

But Daniel didn't write the article.

Double M says:

We have the same mind my friend! :D

liammatho says:

Yes it is fair that someone can share their game with half a dozen mates. They bought the product, they now own it and are entitled to its sharing and resale. My dad works for less than $60 an hour and manages to put more than food on the table. Keep in mind I'm in Australia, where everything is expensive as fuck.

That doesn't sound right. What about Steam? You bought the game but can't resale it at all. What are you talking about? Those games bought in google play, ios and windows phone aren't allowed to copy and redistribute. Your logic failed.

liammatho says:

Sorry, didn't state that I meant physical discs.

Yeah, but those games don't cost $60 and above.
Now if the next Halo was priced at $5.99, like a mobile game, then that's different.

How's that related to topic? nobody is arguing prices?

jSlides says:

That is a common misconception.  You don't buy the game, you buy the licence to play the game and use the disk.  You would have to read all the terms to see if that licence is transferable.
Also, if your dad is working a standard 40 hour work week at 60 per hour, he is making anywhere form 100,000 to 120,000 per year.  I would hope that he manages to put a little more than food on your table.  I know you said less than but anything above 40 per hour is a pretty damn good salary.

liammatho says:

He's a contractor, so he doesn't have a salary or guaranteed work like a game dev would. The point I was trying to make was that game devs have been able to survive this long, why pull this shit only now and only with the support of Xbox.

PS4 certainly doesn't agree with your first statement (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kWSIFh8ICaA). Games shops will also happily buy the game from you. Don't believe many have discussed the environmental impacts of not being able to sell their used games either (selling/trading used games is recycling)

ncxcstud says:

Game devs are surviving?  Employees of developers are being axed all the time...What about THQ and all its subsidiaries?
Here is a list of game studios that closed in the last two years.  Some have been responsible for some pretty fun games - others not so much... Not all are directly related to lost sales in piracy and used games sales, but I'm sure it took a hit either way...
Hudson Soft
Zipper Interactive
Rockstar Vancouver
Big Huge Games
BigBig Studios
Black Hole Entertainment
THQ San Diego
Multiverse Network
Monumental Games
38 Studios
Ubisoft Vancouver
HB Studios Halifax
Bright Light
Dark Engergy Digital
4mm Games
Bizarre Creations
Team Bondi
Propganda games
Black Rock Studio
Bedlam Games
Codemasters Studios Guildford
EA Visceral Melbourne
THQ Digital Studios Phoenix
THQ Digital Studios Warrington
THQ Studio Australia
Kaos Studios
Blue Tongue


liammatho says:

So it took all of those devs to die before they brought in strict DRM. Don't even care, this discussion is going absoluetly nowhere and I figured I'll be happy with GTA 5, don't need a new console.
You can take Team Bondi out of there though, they only made one game, which was a huge success. They died cause they couldn't find another game to work on.

MFmonster says:

Thank you.
You beat me to it.

Josh Cea says:

Sony is tricky...they say that's how you share but they don't say that DRM may be imposed by third party devs and that sharing that way may very well only be with their own 1st party games. They're leaving that out to draw more people in cause there last system had such a horrible launch

Thomas Wilk says:

Sony also doesn't address the use of downloaded games.  They made a huge deal about being able to download and play directly with no/minimal wait time during its February announcement.  But you need a DRM system in place with downloaded games.  Their E3 conference only mentioned disc games.  These games won't be able to be shared among other PS4 consoles.  To help or step in with a game on the PS4, you need your own copy of the game as well.  I would like to see how Sony addresses digital media for their new console.  They either don't know or didn't really think about how to address these concerns of copying and piracy.  

meekeem says:

Welp if its anything like the ps3 just add your account to there system download and bam free game for your buddy

Depending on where they live his dad could pay up to 47% of that straight to taxes. You count mortgage, car payment, and 2.3 kids and bam your broke.

liammatho says:

2.3 kids? damn! what happened to the 0.7 of the other one haha

Sold organs to put supper on the table :P

smerfy01 says:

That's what is being offered though. If you read up on family share, it allows for that in a much more convenient fashion. I don't know what you think developers are paid, but that analogy doesn't really fit. The developers don't get $60 per game sold. The publisher, the platform and retail all get cuts and you have to factor in that most titles are quite expensive to make.
What this system is curbing, however, is the unregulated abuse from retailers who, within the first week of sale, will have "used" games marked down $5 compared to newer ones so that they can garner more of a profit. Released games are competing against themselves due to how the retail space works in the games industry.
It's also curbing piracy, which is STILL a rampant issue. There are forums right now that detail exactly how to cut around restrictions on consoles and get free games. There are also entire groups of people that swap out games between dozens of other people. Hell, I know people in my life that haven't bought a 360 game in years but have played every major title.
There's a lot of abuse going on in the system and I welcome ways to fix it. What Xbox One's system is, is a way to preserve sharing games with your friends/family without abusing the system and I'm 100% okay with that.

liammatho says:

Wasn't an analogy, was replying to the article: "the team of programmers and artists working on your favorite titles are trying to put food on their own family’s tables."
I know how the money gets split. That's the way it works with just about EVERY product on the planet. And yes, piracy is still a big issue and will remin a big issue as long as the hacking scenes are up for a challenge to find the loop holes.

_Emi_ says:

only because you bought the discs it doesnt mean you own the game.... have you ever read the EULA what you agree when you install/buy/play a game?
you are LICENSED to play the game. and they usually say how its not legal to resell, or even give the game to your friends.
i dont get how you own the game because you bought a cd but not when you bought it through a store like steam?
for example:
*Activision grants you a personal, limited, non-exclusive, non-transferable license to use one copy of this Program solely and exclusively for your personal use.

*This Program is licensed not sold.

*Your license confers no tile or ownership of this Program.

*YOU SHALL NOT sell, rent, lease, license, distribute or otherwise transfer the Program or any copies of this Program without the express prior written consent of Activision.
only becuase you bought the disc it doesnt mean you own anything!!! thats what you have agreed over the years when you play alot of games. dont complain about it.
also what if your father worked in a game publishing company? would you be happy knowing someone is using games without your fathers company getting anything? what if in your current your fathers job, some clients pay and some others dont? oh yeah, but I guess its not your father case I guess its not a valid argument? or becuase game publishers like activision or EA have so much money, then it doesnt matter? even though they spend alot of money and time paying studios to get a game out? some publishers might have alot of money but they are also paying alot of money to bring games out. and they should be trated and getting paid just like any job. because they are here for money, not to necesarily make people happy for having a new game. thats their business.
have you seen how many game publishers have disappeared over the years? maybe it wasnt the resell of used games that made all the job. but it surely didnt help.
but anyway i feel like you wont even understand what im saying... so whatever.

liammatho says:

Yes, some clients haven't payed him, but that's beside my point of replying to the article: "the team of programmers and artists working on your favorite titles are trying to put food on their own family’s tables."
No, I don't read the EULA, because I want to play the game that I don't own.
"YOU SHALL NOT sell, rent, lease, license, distribute or otherwise transfer the Program or any copies of this Program without the express prior written consent of Activision".
Do you want to try telling that to game shops?

JasonH81 says:

ULTRA ULTRA ULTRA!!!! FATALITY!!!! BEAST MODE!!!! I don't understand how all these gaming websites and magazines could possibly call themselves "Gamers". They acted all ignorant and fanboy-ish, like they had no clue about why DRM would be necessary and the fact that games are licensed, not owned. They were total noobs, and I wish I could really call them out on their bull. They know what's going on in the industry, and still they reacted like spoiled children. And I can't even understand Sony's classless cheap shot against Microsoft at E3. It saddened me that gamers are so ignorant to the business side of gaming. If you want gaming to survive, then your gonna have to put up or shut up. It costs money, and no company can survive off of well wishes and free-99. It's time for gamers to grow up and be mature about this; after all, this is not a cheap hobby. If you own 10 games and bought them brand new, that's $600 right there.

novaks47 says:

That is all true. The issue with the 24hr check-in however, is that if your offline for more than 24hrs, then Microsoft is basically, temprorily, SUSPENDING the liscense that you payed for. A liscense that you didn't pay them for, but rather the game publisher. Granted, it is temporary, but still inexcusable. The 24hr check-in seems both unnessacery and overkill. Also, I must be clear here, I am not against  check-ins, but as another commenter pointed out, this could be handled differently.

novaks47 says:

I would also like to add, that none of this will even so much as slow down piracy. Steam was bypassed ages ago, and this server verification will easily be gotten around. Will those people be able to play online? Nope! But it won't curb them in the slightest.

meekeem says:

I own the cd not the program i can resell the cd to anybody i can do whatever i want with it its my property as long as i dont try to sell there program or alter it in any way they cant do squat

Narse77 says:

Maybe you mistyped but it is not fair to share your game with half a dozen mates. The devolpers need to get paid also or we will end up only having games on phones and tablets where you can't share at all not even once.

theefman says:

There should be a clear distinction between disc based games and digital downloads. Disc based games should be accessible if the disc is inserted otherwise its reasonable to have to check in if the disc isnt in the console.
If you buy a digital download then its also reasonable you would have to check in to play it. That gives you a choice to take advanage of the features of digital downloads or stay with disc based games that can be traded and lent as they are today. 
Eventually you can decide if the convenience options offered by going digital are better for you or stay with the old format. MS can move the industry towards digital while giving people options to continue as is. Everyone's happy and no one feels like they are forced into anything.

rjmlive says:

I have no doubt they had these thoughts on the table, but someone will make some BluRay based hack and somehow validate the game offline to bypass the system.  The only way it works is if the check in system is in a MS controlled cloud that presumably nobody can tamper with.

Perhaps the only reason they put a BluRay on this machine in the first place is to make it easier for people to migrate to the future of gaming.  Can you imagine if they didn't offer a BluRay?  I'm sure that discussion was on the table for a long time as well.

eric12341 says:

My guess is that they will eventually implement something like that if that backlash continues or worsens in a firmware update later on. Either way though I'll still be getting mine around tax time.

walkingdogs says:

You need to think of the One as a media less system when it comes to the games. The only reason discs exist for it are so retailers have something to put on the shelves and for people who have internet but not at speeds that will make downloading up to 50 GB games convenient. The disc only exists as another method of data delivery.

Polychrome says:

There's also the case of customers on cellular internet, which is sufficent for speed but usually has hefty limits to prevent some jerk from hogging the airwaves. (At least until 4G is saturated enough. 3G is more expensive for carriers to transmit for some reason.)
For them, having an "install disk" is perfect.

WilliamC1972 says:

Makes sense what he stated. Hmmmm..... But a check in once every 24 hours should be eliminated.

Hmm maybe every 48 or 72 hours would be more reasonable? That being said, if you don't have internet every 24 hours - who says you will have it every 72.

swizzlerz says:


Luc4 says:

Couldn't they just say if no internet check if physical DVD is there?
Sure that wouldn't quite work with disallowing rentals but to work around that just cache the gamer tag approved for that game (just once).

The internet check isn't for just one game, its for ALL of your games installed. It's purpose is to make sure that you own the licenses to the games installed. If you put in a disc for one game, what about the countless others on the HDD? The point of the 24 hour checks is to make sure you haven't installed your games and then given them to a friend or sold them without unlicensing it first.

Of cours it would be more reasonable. People travel. While traveling there is a good chance you won't get access to the internet, or it will be ridicolously expensive, or it will block required ports, or it will work with some other limitations which would not allow you to use it. I know, what i am talking about. F.e. 7-14 days would be much more acceptable. And 24 h limit tells me, there is something more behind MS motivation.

swizzlerz says:

Why? Its for security purposes to stop piracy and hackers. Is that so bad??

jSlides says:

UBI soft put that crap in their games.  My internet was fine but their servers were down for a week and I could not play my campaign even though my save games were on disk.  Their offline mode would not let you continue a game you were playing unless you explicitly started it that way.  Something they don't seem to mention anywhere when you start of the game or start a campain.

I am sure Microsoft thought about servers going down occasionally, they raised their server farm from 15,000 to 300,000. 

Just think, 15,000 servers ran Xbox Live and everything about it for 48 million subscribers, what do you think 300,000 will accomplish

rjmlive says:

Most people can finish a game in 24 hours. Besides if you own it anyway, who cares.

Musicman247 says:

They should eliminate the check-in for games you download digitally, since you can't share them anyway.

Zeeshan360 says:

You could actually share even digital games to 10 people on Xbox One by XBL Family sharing .. It's not possible on Steam & PS4

So you can't share them with the allotted 10 friends?

Musicman247 says:

I meant share them in a permenant way.The 10 family member thing would still work since that's in the cloud anyway.

Viipottaja says:

So you downloaded it. What's your problem with it checking in over the,same connection you just used?

The check in isn't for a single game when you load it up, it runs every 24 hours to make sure you own the licenses for ALL of your games.

tbonenga says:

True... What are the soldiers gonna play? They don't have internet when overseas.

I don't have a source right now but I think I read somewhere that MS was asked this question and they responded by saying that they do support exceptional circumstance like Military and they will accomodate it. Besides, the Military is the last place they will suspect piracy. They've got gobs of money. And they get more every year. But the men and women sure do a fine job. So more power to them. 

tbonenga says:

Microsoft said they can play the 360. There gonna keep producing it for offline gamers. I don't like it but that's just me. I also think them courageous soldiers want like it either and go a different route.

Lol at your gobs of money statement. Thanks I needed that :)

_Emi_ says:

wow... so microsoft should stop trying to bring innovation because solders from YOUR country (like if it was the only country in the world) cant play games?, oh yeah that makes sense....
i mean... do you think other people/countries around the world care what your army do or not? or if someone joins your army or not? im sorry but most people around the world DONT CARE. so it would be stupid to stop innovation only because your army likes to be involved in war.
xbox one is a console for the WORLD, not only your country. stop bringing stupid points like if they made your arguments better about how "xbox one isnt good enough" (thats why you are getting ps4 no?).
there are alot of devices which need internet, its not like they shouldnt exist because YOUR army, cant use them.

tbonenga says:

Yes this a WORLD but I bet my country's AMERICAN SOLDIERS has saved your country's ASS. So say what you want about me punk. Just don't put down AMERICAN SOLDIERS

_Emi_ says:

they havent saved my ass.. in any way idiot. so stop talking crap, you dont even know where i am from, or where i live (yeah 2 different countries)
im not saying anything that isnt true anyway, 90% of other countries (or more) dont care about you or your soldiers in fact they hate you.
lol another pathetic person from united states who has a hurt pride? please grow up.
but like i said microsoft should stop their vision for some retarded people like you who think they are special.

tbonenga says:

What country are you from? I bet some time in the past Americas Star Spangled Red, White and Blue Ass saved your country's ass.. You got it wrong...... Other countries don't hate America. Their jealous. You can try to call it hate all you want but their JEALOUS . I don't blame them. America is the Greatest country in the world. Everybody wants to come here not vice versa. Loser

And our Canadian soldiers have saved your ass.

Yeah I would say every live saved because of soldiers care! I mean I know if a dictator was threatening me and a group soldiers showed and allowed me and my family to be free yeah I would say I would care.

_Emi_ says:

and then im sure none of those countries are dying for a Xbox One! ;)

and this is not about wars or about "dictators" from a country you cant even locate in a map anyway, its about how Microsoft shouldnt stop innovating for soldiers that cant have access to internet all the time and then cant have Xbox one.
but ONLY because you dont know what is like to be outside your bubble and you think you are the saviors of the universe, it doesn't mean outside its what you think it is [so I don't expect you to understand]. but yeah most people wont care about you or your soldiers, so why should Microsoft stop innovating for the world only because some soldiers cant get a Xbox One and then don't bring anything new to other users around the world? I still dont understand that, because it sounds stupid. if companies thought about everyone who cant have internet access or electricity or even water... this world wouldn't have any technology and we would live like Flintstones, because not everyone can have it.

Of course its not about dictators I was only giving you an answer to your question,
 "do you think other people/countries around the world care what your army do or not? or if someone joins your army or not? im sorry but most people around the world DONT CARE"
So don't get mad at me for having the answer nor insult my intelligence after all I knew the answer and you didn't. :p I do believe if you are looking for the Saviour of the Universe you should start with the master Heman! That however is just a suggestion I cant say for sure that he is or is not. Now for me being able to supposedly not find certain countries, I can find any country I want, its very simple either I Bing it or I look at a world map. Both of which i have access to at any time so yeah that theory of yours is wrong to. What else do we have... How about the innovation side, Microsoft doesn't have to stop innovating just not alienate the group that allows them to live safe and free in this amazing country. As i have heard recently they claim to be making an exception for this type of problem. So i don't know what all the fuss is anyway. Now you accuse me of being in a bubble however you are doing the exact same thing, you in your bubble of if it doesn't effect me why should I care. See none of this stuff affects me either but im not a douchebag, so I actually sympathize and will help voice there opinion to see that Microsoft or any company for that matter can find a better way. You know be more innovative :)

Xbox 360 is the solution for now. It will continue to be supported with new content for years to come. A new model was recently released.

Tom Strosser says:

Microsoft said they will allow exceptioms for people in certain situations where access to the internet just isn't possible and their main example was the US Armed Forces. Also EMI don't be disrespectful of something like that you might not care but we in the US like to support our troops in every way possible and they certainly deserve with the great job they do. And I agree that doesent mean MS should stop innovating and it will never mean that but being an american company they feel an obligation to make sure our military abroad gets to have a product they make as well they should. But again there is no need to be disrespectful. You would probably feel the same way if it was a company where u live and the people who protect your country.

I think the check should be the next time you want to play again. What if I go to vacations or I move from house?  What is going to happen to that box???

That is exactly how it works. The check just takes place once every 24 hours while it is connected to internet, if it is disconnected it will authenticate the next time it is.

I am not sure why people are under the impression that you will need to physically authenticate every 24 hours, that's a ludicrous proposition. The authentication will happen with no user interaction at all.

DJCBS says:

This is the most pathetic attempt at justifying the unjustifiable I've seen In a while...but kudos for trying

(for a development, read my comments bellow, written once I wasn't constricted by the small touch keys of my phone)

tbonenga says:

I think he made so valid points. There's actually so good points. The every 24 hour and no control over something you spend $60 on is what I have a major problem with.

Musicman247 says:

Like others have said, when you buy a disc, you're not buying the game, you're buying a license to play the game.

tbonenga says:

Yeah, that's where my interpretation differs. On downloadable content I could see your point. On a physical disc I don't. That's just my opinion. I'd also hate for car companies to start doing this. I mean if we couldn't sell our cars all the plant engineers/workers would get paid good because everyone would have to buy a new car.

Musicman247 says:

You might want to brush up on your copyright law.

tbonenga says:

Just curious. If it's illegal to sell used games why does Microsoft allow it? Used games have been available on eBay from day 1. EBay doesn't sell illegal items. If Microsoft complained they would've been banned. So maybe your right I'm no authority on copy right law. I do know if it was illegal eBay, gamestop, WalMart best buy , etc wouldn't be selling used games. Also gamefly and redbox wouldn't be renting them. So I'm gonna have to say I think I'm right on this one.

"...without express written permission from (insert developer's name here)."

DJCBS says:

Actually that's not exactly how it works. You buy the right to the game contained on that disc. Being the disc your property, you have the right to use its contents for your entertainment. You don't get, obviously, the copyrights regarding characters, story etc of the game, but you do get the property of the disc and its contents. Therefore you are entitled to resell your property anytime you want. There is, however, a difference between reselling the game as a private or as a store. You can legally sell your used games on eBay. They are your property. However , if you do the reselling of games a business, then you need proper permissions because you're making money out of the selling of products and obviously you have to be taxed for that. That's why on eBay etc its so common to see "this is a private auction. No warranty or returns" (something along those lines).

With digital content, however, its not the same. You download the game but you can not pass that download along for the simple reason that when you do, you're duplicating the game instead of picking your property and sell it again or lend it. When you do that, you lose the property over the object temporarily or definitely depending on if you lend or sell. When you "lend" a digital copy, you're not losing property at all. You keep your game and your friend receives a copy.

Now, while in the case of digital games it is legitimate for companies to worry about "redistribution", when it comes to disc games, such legitimacy does NOT exist. If they want to ensure their work is not duplicated they can opt for a tactic that is already being implemented on eBooks. Some modern eReaders are trying a "lending" process that allows you to legally lend your digital copy. What the system does is, when you decide to lend to a friend, the system removes your ability to access the book and it passes it to the person you want to lend the book to.
THAT I would accept if it was implemented on games. It makes complete sense. However one can NOT accept that such attempts are made against disks etc. Because, unlike the digital copies, you DO lose your ability to enjoy your property when you lend it.

What Microsoft is trying with Xbox One is an inadmissible attempt to diminish your rights upon something that is your property, just to try to make you pay more for a physical game. And, obviously, they're getting back slashed for it.

badMojo69 says:

OMG thank you for schooling these people.

IF what Microsoft was doing was against First  Sale Doctrine then it would go to court and be settled there, if it doesn't then they are perfectly in their rights to do what they are doing whether you like it or not. You can argue Physical vs Digital all you want, but what essentially what Microsoft is doing is using the discs as download cards in a sense. You plug the disc in, install the game, and never use the disc again. 

They are not disallowing you to sell your game either, they are giving you the ability to do so with participating retailers, which is more than you can say for any other form of digital game. Retailers have to be able to make sure that the license is removed from the console before accepting the game and reselling, not sure why these polices are so hard to understand. Perhaps they should have just gone purely digital distribution with download cards at the store instead of disc, maybe then people would get it.

Gunzta says:

DJCBS - You've obviously never read the EULA that comes with every game. You do NOT own the game, it is NOT your personal property. You are granted an exclusive licence to use it in specific accordence with the terms and conditions of the EULA. This is VERY different from owning the product.
You really need to check your facts my freind.

DJCBS says:

Thing is, those are exactly the core of all the problems around the Xbox One (along with the privacy concerns regarding Kinect).
Let us not be naive. Sony and Nintendo has similar plans to PS4 and Wii U. But Microsoft was the first to present them to the public. Obviously, from the moment Sony and Nintendo saw the immense negative response from consumers to those ideas, they immediately backed and abolished those plans. Microsoft, not only handled the entire PR terribly, they were not smart enough to also withdraw those ideas once they saw the consumers response to them. So, naturally, they're being deservedly back slashed.
I have a PS3 but I'm not a "gamer" per se. I can count with my left hand the number of times I played online. But I was actually excited for the new Xbox to come out 'cause I do like Microsoft and would like to integrate my tablets and smartphones with the console. But Microsoft screwed up big time. Being checked every 24 hours, restrictions and more restrictions on the games, all the burocracy around the ability to lend a bloody disc, that mandatory all-seeing eye of Sauron...all of that is a big big deal breaker.
But I still have hope that Microsoft sees that this is most definitely not the way to go and takes several steps back and abolishes all this nonsense. No matter how hard people try to sugar coat the issues (and Michael really does try hard on this article, which honestly deserved him a job at Microsoft's PR team), they will still be there to push people away from the Xbox One. And believe me, Sony will do everything to remind people of that (and even Nintendo may pull some stunts around that if the Wii U is threatened).
With all those big problems, I, just like so many others, wouldn't want an Xbox One. I would get a PS4 instead (which I don't intend to, obviously). The love one has for a brand must have limits. And Xbox One clearly stepped over those.

Remember that Steam was not received positively when it launched, but now it is a favorite for PC gamers. What Microsoft is doing will have growing pains, as they are trying to advance the industry towards  digital distrubtion. Why should they simply stick with the status quo and do the same old shit all the time.
And privacy issues? Microsoft has already stated you can fully customize what the Kinect does, and what the console sends back to Microsoft in the from of metadata. You can even turn it off from listening for Xbox On. The whole NSA thing is a government thing, and should be addressed by them. Microsoft is not responsible for what the government does, not should they be held accountable for those actions either. Fact of the matter is that the government could demand user data from any company, not just Microsoft. 

Tom Strosser says:

Another confused soul who bought into that extremely vague PS4 theatrics at E3. You obviously didn't see the interview with Jack Tretten (John?)... He explained Sonys policy on used games and its pretty much the same thing as Microsofts. How will they enforce DRM on third party games remains to be seen but I can say with a certainty there will be some sort of authenticity check just like with the xbox one. Their first party games on the otherhand will not habe any restrictions. That's the only big difference. Xbox One so far in my opinion has a far better exclusive lineup so far. Time will tell. Personally I'm buying both don't want to miss out on some of those great PS4 exclusives but XBox One will be my main console its features services and titles impress me way more. Nice try though still don't believe me use that wonderful google machine :P

Bloobed says:

Nope nope, PS4 will have the same policy as PS3 has; online passes are the only restriction.

DJCBS says:

I know. Only saw that later. Bloody autocorrect.

wolfgangjr says:

We pay for access to games. We never own them. Guess what? Swapping and loaning games to friends is illegal. Plain and simple. That would be pirating. Game studios have gone under because of this behavior. This is why im all for it as long as prices start to come down with the reduced piracy. PS4 would seem to continue to support that kind of environment. What does that tell you?

If letting a friend borrow a game is why a company fell then that company should have made a better game. All the studios that do well are the ones who make games so good that "friends" can't wait to play thus everyone says you know for that 60$ is worth it. If you think that this will stop piracy your wrong. Those crafty law breaking people have always, and will always find a way. Until piracy laws are forced at an extreme rate this will never end. People like us who try our best to follow the law will keep having to jump through these hoops to enjoy our games. Its a sad affair but its criminals that have made lots of our lives a lot more difficult in order to thwart them. This is just another one of those times. We get these ridiculous rules to follow why the criminals will make a way and continue on.

DJCBS says:

No, it's not illegal. Please read my (rather long) comment above.

The fear mongering of anti piracy seems to have caused perminant brain damage.

WilliamC1972 says:

The future will be downloading all your games from Xbox Live. There's no doubt that's the direction the industry is going!

Exactly, and Microsoft is being a leader and making the hard choices now, instead of being a follower. They may make a lot of bad choices along the way, but eventually they will get there. 

pbroy says:

The only thing that I don't like is the 24 hour check-in. I don't care about the 1 hour check-in at friends.

The1nChicago says:

This is my main issue is the 24hr check-in requirement.  Furthermore, another site did discuss how MS alienated the whole military community because they do not always have broadband,  I expect MS to make adjustments and make a big announcement during the next gaming event like Gamescon as Germany will have an issue with MS based on privacy.

Zeeshan360 says:

The online check in is to confirm whether u have sold or lend ur disc to ur friend and u are still playing the game because in Xbox One u don't need a disc inside the drive to play games ..

pbroy says:

They should have made it so that if the disc is still in the drive, you can play the game offline without a check-in

jgbstetson says:

Then people would stay offline and swap games over and over. It allows zero control over piracy.

paulxxwall says:

That would be sweet

I have said this about 3 times in this article alone. The check in is for ALL of your games, not just the game you are playing. Removing the check because one disc is in the drive would not serve any purpose towards authenticating all of your licenses.

Viipottaja says:

Sorry I am new to this discussion. What's the problem with the check in? You have an internet connection I assume.

I actually don't. I'm looking to get it before the XB1 drops, but if it was out now I wouldn't be able to get it. I would like to see no check-in required with the disc in the drive, but I understand the reasoning behind it. Personally, I'm glad to see MS stand up to resellers and software pirates on behalf of the devs. I forsee it creating an environment where grateful devs develop kick-ass titles for XB1 first or even exclusively because MS risked lost sales to help protect their interests. MS gaming systems will be perched atop my entertainment center for the next generation and beyond.

oddom says:

Nope they are gonna flop and rightfully so...we never had this problem in the past but now everything seems to be a huge problem without any real problem. Buying used games has been happening for years and studios seem to be making more money then ever before. Remember a little game called modern warfare which sold gangbusters it's opening weekend? Who said that companies were losing millions? Maybe the ones making crappy games nobody plays. Besides I buy games based on playing it at a friends or they bring the game to my house and if I like it I buy it. If you are on the game developers side then do the movie industry a favor and stop watching your movies with friends and letting them barrow them. I will miss halo but this is too locked down for me.

Yes, because digital distribution platforms are destined to flop right? Guess Steam is an utter failure.

Rug says:

Here's my issue. As a WP user, I'm used to digital downloads. My games still work on my phone if I turn on airplane mode for 2 months. Same with my Zune Pass content. How about some consistency here?

360 license lasts for as long as the device.
Zune license lasts about 45 days, not actually sure here, but whatever it is, its reasonable and unobtrusive.
Xbox One license lasts 24 hours, also the device itself is $500.

Come on Microsoft you are smarter than this. Surely there is a better alternative without being condescending.

The distinction here I think is quite simple. With your phone those apps are purely digital download, there is no way for you to take that app and copy it to another phone. However, with the X1 they are transitioning into DD (digital distribution) by using discs still. Those discs install in to the X1 and are no longer required for the game to play. Without license authentication you could take that disc and install it in countless other consoles. If Microsoft were to however go directly to DD without using discs as transitional media then I don't think the authentication process would be what it is like now. 
Also, because their are discs still you will be able to sell those games, which you wouldn't be able to do if it was a purely DD game. 

Musicman247 says:

MS should make digital downloads cheaper and exempt from the 24 hour check-in. That would shut up all the nay-sayers immediately.

I agree with you all digital download should be cheaper. Just the fact alone that there is no packaging no print out, no instructions, no shipping, and no middle man. Those things in and of themselves would cut price down.

mondokjm says:

While I 100% agree with your reasoning, I think an effect of that would be retailers telling Microsoft that they won't stock physical copies of games because the competition with digital downloads isn't level and fair. I mean, walk into a retail store and count how many physical copies of PC games are in their video game section. While its a brilliant idea, I think Microsoft would anger a few of their retailers.

Oh for christ sakes, the check-in is for ALL of your games, not just for one game. 
Sorry for being a little short but I have said this multiple times in the last 20 minutes. The check in is not for whatever game you are playing, it is for your entire library that is installed on your HDD, so unless people plan on only keeping 1 game on a 500 gb HDD these eliminate check if disc is in the drive, or if it is a digital download suggestions are completely pointless.

Edwincnelson says:

The best part of this (I hope) is that developers will bring some of those Steam style sales to the marketplace because a solid DRM scheme is in place to make sure they can better control their revenue. Forget paying 5$ for a scratched Gears of War disc, how about 7$ for a new download attached to my account.

swizzlerz says:

Im not angry never was. I support buying games. Wait long enough get a game for unde r$10 on steam. Can't wait to do the same on xbox

I think that is exactly the path they are trying to forge, a digital distribution platform where they can lower the prices quicker than physical discs are, and can offer good sales. In fact, I think one of their execs has even said as such (or perhaps that was the anonymous engineer)

bshu55 says:

Finally someone is willing to explain it. I appreciate it man. Cause all these ps4 fan boys or ex Xbox fans are hating on the X1 and jumping on the PS4 bandwagon. Saying oh o don't have to pay to play. Wrong you do. Hope that everyone that buys a ps4 gets hit with a stricter DRM by the developers lol

paulxxwall says:

What happens to companies like gamefly?

Maybe they can partner with Microsoft or launch a digital download rental service. (just ideas)

jaybee says:

That was my thought as well. What if Microsoft set up a separate type of bulk game license (not unlike Office for enterprise users) for companies like Gamefly?
You pay your membership, but instead of sending you a game on a disc, they send you a text or an email with the license key. Or better yet, the service automagically starts the download of the next title in your queue once you let them know that you're "returning" the current game. That would be amazing, and I'd pay way more than $17/month for a service like that. You could switch out titles at work and have it waiting for you when you get home. Everyone is happy: Microsoft and the developers have a constant revenue stream from bulk licenses, Gamefly doesn't have to worry about shipping physical media across the US (and losing discs, etc.), and users have instant access to games as a part of their subscription.
Hire me Microsoft, I'm full of good ideas!

Musicman247 says:

It really depends on how much they're willing to work with MS and the developers. MS could make rental discs attached to an account that allows sharing of games an unlimited amount of times. They send out the game, the customer installs it, plays it, send it back, then the game is checked-in at their warehouse, diabling it from the customer's Xbox.
Really, it's not hard to figure out if you think about it.

Graven Pshya says:

That's a good idea regarding the renting process on X1. I'm sure the people at Microsoft are thinking of a way also to figure out renting, but the event that an unauthorized person should get their hands on a type of account like that..

Dxe316 says:

I've been wondering about this myself. Is Microsoft basically gonna force gamefly to go bankrupt?

Zeeshan360 says:

Microsoft said renting will available later ..

paulxxwall says:

Gamefly will go bankrupt because of DRM

Zeeshan360 says:

It's good as that money they earn would be diverted to developers

ncxcstud says:

Gamefly will do it to themselves. I've tried their services 3 times now and they never send games quick enough to me. They'll get a game and it'll take 3 days for them to even change my queue list...

Jeff Bunn says:

About the shared games, will both you and your brother be able to play shared games at the same time? As in I can buy Forza motorsports, and my brother could play it at the same time?

Zeeshan360 says:

On the same console yes ..

kssxs says:

No, only one person can play the game at a time.  Think of it as if that person had your disc for that game... only then can play then, right?  Same thing here... (it's all about usage licensing).  And what Zeeshan360 said is also true.  If you're on the same console, you can both play, just like before.  On different consoles, only one of you can use the game at a time.

MFmonster says:

This should be clarified. I read anothet article two can play the same game on different consoles. Own halo and play it with your brother that lives on another state pm hos Xbox. Only two per game, and the other 9 family members have access to the other games.

mondokjm says:

@MFmonster can you link to the article that stated that? I don't recall hearing anything like that.

CCninja86 says:

Yeah, I think two people can play the game at the same time (almost like multiplayer), but no more than two.