Will the next Xbox console block used games? So what happens now?
One thing is for certain – there’s a new Xbox console coming sooner or later, almost certainly to be called the Xbox 720. One other thing might be certain too – you won’t be able to play pre-owned games on it. What? What the actual what??
Kotaku’s Steven Totilo knows people who know things and he says this: “I’ve heard from one reliable industry source that Microsoft intends to incorporate some sort of anti-used game system as part of their so-called Xbox 720.” Which would mean a massive shift in the world of games retailing over the next few years.
The console makers and console games manufacturers must be livid at the amount of money they believe themselves to be missing out on through re-selling at the moment. Similarly, they must also be livid at Apple’s way of doing things – with all games and apps downloadable-only affairs, with one owner for every game.
As we hurtle towards a cloud-based digital world, is it just a matter of time before games stop being available in disc or cartridge form? That seems unlikely, as your average console game takes up much more hard drive room than your average app, and sooner or later, the hardcore gamer will run out of storage space if everything has to be stored on a hard drive (that is also capable of failing).
Perhaps online, cloud-based streaming gaming like the service provided by OnLive will become the norm? The trouble is that cloud-based gaming will always lag behind console gaming when it comes to graphics. Further still, will bricks-and-mortar games shops cease to exist if digital downloads become more prevalent?
One of the more obvious solutions is to sell games with unique codes so that they can only be used by one owner. But will that be enough to satisfy the game makers, who will still be livid by the probability that pirates will find around the system?
It all seems up for grabs right now – and there’s no way of knowing how the land will lie once the dust has settled. What do YOU think the future of gaming is? Perhaps you don’t give a toss. If so, tell us what you’re wearing instead.