Xbox One reminder about game sharing & trading policies

September 12, 2013 by Staff - Leave a comment

Just in case you weren’t crystal clear as to what Microsoft’s DRM reversal for the Xbox One meant, they’ve created the infographic below to try and explain some of the benefits of what’s been dubbed the “Xbox 180 policy reversal”.

As you can see, it’s designed to emphasize that the Xbox One is “your choice”, “your games” and “your call”. It’s also important to note that MS has not ruled out bringing back some of the sharing/trading features that were removed – their view is that the general public simply wasn’t ready for such features (and accompanying restrictions) just yet.


We’d say it was much more a case of message delivery, with Steam having just rolled out similar policies without a massive backlash (although it is still beta)…

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Microsoft reverses DRM and internet policies for Xbox One

June 19, 2013 by Staff - 19 Comments


Microsoft has reversed it’s DRM policies for the PS4’s direct competitor, the Xbox One. Today it announced disc-based games will now be tradable without restriction (just like today with the Xbox 360) and that an internet connection will not be required to play offline games (with no corresponding requirement to “check-in” every 24 hours).

Wow. Good to see consumers still have some power!

If you were sitting on the fence about which next-gen console to buy (excluding the Wii U) has this move helped you make up your mind? We see a couple of immediate issues with Microsoft’s backflip, and indeed the internet has been running hot with people lamenting the change and again, getting angry with Microsoft! They can’t seem to win…

  • Gamers think Microsoft tried to screw them, failed, and are now just backpedalling. These people have long memories and don’t forgive that easily. That bridge has been burnt.
  • Features that people were excited for (family sharing) are now in the minds of gamers and have been removed with the DRM reversal. Full details on the extent of the removal are not yet available though (ie there might still be some good news in respect of family sharing).
  • Microsoft hasn’t opted for some sort of middle ground (eg keeping family sharing for digital games or disabling sharing for offline accounts) – but again, the full extent of any sharing removal is not known.
  • It’s still $100 more expensive than the PS4.

On the other hand, you could argue it’s just the fanboys who have been making all the noise – both when the policies were first introduced, and now when they’ve been removed. Either way, it’s been an unprecedented few weeks in video games history.

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Microsoft 180s on DRM policy for Xbox One

by Staff - 1 Comment


Microsoft has just completed a stunning 180 on its digital rights management (DRM) policy for the Xbox One.

You will no longer need a connection to the internet to play offline games and there is no requirement at all to connect to Microsoft servers every 24 hours. In addition, all disc-based games will be used exactly as they are now with the Xbox 360. You can trade, swap, buy and sell them as you please. There will also be no regional restrictions.

Downloaded titles cannot be traded (as it works today) and you will also need to have the disc in the tray when you want to play a disc based game, even if it has been installed on your hard-drive. Here’s an excerpt from the official statement.

An internet connection will not be required to play offline Xbox One games – After a one-time system set-up with a new Xbox One, you can play any disc based game without ever connecting online again. There is no 24 hour connection requirement and you can take your Xbox One anywhere you want and play your games, just like on Xbox 360.

Trade-in, lend, resell, gift, and rent disc based games just like you do today – There will be no limitations to using and sharing games, it will work just as it does today on Xbox 360.

In addition to buying a disc from a retailer, you can also download games from Xbox Live on day of release. If you choose to download your games, you will be able to play them offline just like you do today. Xbox One games will be playable on any Xbox One console — there will be no regional restrictions.

What’s bizarre (or sadly expected, I guess) is the backlash that this reversal is now receiving everywhere. Gamers essentially asked to be able to own their games and play them offline. They’ve gotten exactly that and also seem to expect the sharing policies (with up to ten family members) to remain. The thing is you can very rarely have your cake and eat it too.

And on the positive side it shows that consumers still hold the power to shape the way products are developed, a particularly important point in respect of the constantly evolving DRM landscape that we face today.

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