EA Cancel Online Pass But Xbox One Has Pre-Owned Game Fees
May 21, 2013, Author: Neil Hughes
UPDATE: There is a collective shitstorm of confusion over the details of the Xbox One’s alleged pre-owned fee at this point, with no one from Microsoft doing anything to clear it up. We’ll update with a fresh news story once the dust is settled and the facts are known.
Wherever you are in the world, if you are a gamer then chances are you would have found the screen of your choice to soak up the moment that Microsoft revealed their new console Xbox One. All the familiar buzzwords were repeated, such as ‘franchise’, ‘community’, ‘immersion’ and ‘innovation’. The main reason people tuned in, however, was to find out the answers to two questions that will make them part with their hard-earned cash: what does the in-game footage look like? And how much is it going to cost me?
It’s of no surprise that we are all going to have to wait a little longer yet, as Microsoft and Sony continue their little game of cat and mouse. An interesting revelation, though, is the confirmation that gamers will have to pay an extra fee to play pre-owned games on Xbox One.“On the new Xbox, all game discs are installed to the HDD to play,” a Microsoft representative told Wired.
The Wired article also reveals the following: “What follows naturally from this is that each disc would have to be tied to a unique Xbox Live account, else you could take a single disc and pass it between everyone you know and copy the game over and over. Since this is clearly not going to happen, each disc must then only install for a single owner.”
It also stated “Microsoft did say that if a disc was used with a second account, that owner would be given the option to pay a fee and install the game from the disc, which would then mean that the new account would also own the game and could play it without the disc.”
In a world where customers are turning their back on Apple for being too restrictive, this could open up a whole can of worms for the gaming industry. People cannot afford to purchase a console for £400 and games for £50 a title, and this is why the pre-owned and rental market is so strong. Especially when you consider the cost of big-name games on a tablet for under £5.
Restrictions really have no place in the modern digital world, and this really could be make or break for the next generation of consoles. I understand the reasons for the parties involved, but what I don’t appreciate is being hoodwinked by EA who recently had some unlikely positive headlines by announcing that they were dropping online passes because ‘their users didn’t like it’.
As EA attempt to rebuild their reputation and prove to the world that they listen to their customer base, it appears that the reality was a deal was already confirmed that an alternative method of charging users was on its way anyway.
Generally gamers are a savvy switched-on bunch that spend a long time online reading the latest stories and are never going to fall for the usual bullshit, especially when the two announcements are under a week apart. I mean come on people, what do you take us for? A quick look on Twitter reveals that many have not forgotten the recent news, which is of no surprise considering that a good memory is essential for gaming.
I am not interested in my gaming console doing essentially what my TV does anyway, and certainly don’t want to read if my mate John is eating a sandwich via its social media features. I just want to play awesome games.
Make no mistake; there is war in your living room as TV, gaming, internet and cinema are all evolving into one big bubble. Companies are fighting to the death to make you choose their product, as conventional entertainment continues its decline. Sometimes though, I just want to play games, and I hope both Microsoft and Sony do not lose sight of this.