For some time now, one of the biggest fears in the gaming community has been that Microsoft, and for a while even Sony, would implement some sort of Draconian locking system, which would prevent console owners from either trading in or even loaning their games to a friend.
All of our worst fears have just been realised when Microsoft made it official last night post-conference that they would in fact be tying video game licenses directly to your Xbox Live Gamertag. Couple that with the fact that if you do give your game to a friend, he/she will have to fork out an additional fee to Microsoft before they are able to enjoy their new favourite game.
What does this mean for the already ailing video game industry? With piracy running rife amongst the consumers who complain that video game prices are simply “too high” to afford and the only other legal alternative having been the option to pop down to the nearest video game exchange shop and picking up a pre-played copy of their sought after title on their favourite platform, this might serve to create a much larger divide between Microsoft and it’s customers.
Several of the gamers I follow on Twitter have already stated overtly that because of this, and Microsoft’s move away from backwards compatibility that they would not be picking up the Xbox One at launch or not at all. Sony’s PlayStation 4 is really looking like a viable alternate option at this stage as no mention of a Draconian license locking system has been announced, but Sony hasn’t revealed all their cards yet as is evident with their lack of physical console during their announce event in February.
So the jury is out, without all the facts, gamers are still very confused as to what will be happening with the upcoming generation of video games.
Perhaps a viable option would be the Ouya with it’s Current-Gen system specs, but that is also out considering the console will most likely only work on a digital medium.
There doesn’t seem to be any concrete evidence to support that we will in fact really OWN the games we buy in the next generation as the term “own” implies you can do what you want with the property you bought. At this stage it feels as if we will be renting the game instead of owning it, which might not be taken too well by gamers.
This is quite scary if you think about it. Is this the world we can expect to be living in in the future?
Share your thoughts in the comments below.