Today, Microsoft announced some huge changes to the controversial policies surrounding DRM and used game rights for the Xbox One. Needless to say, I think many gamers are going to like what they hear.
There’s no way to sugar-coat it, people were upset with the new restrictions Microsoft introduced with the Xbox One. This was only made worse by the fact that they were very unclear with what exactly the new policies were. Nobody was 100% sure how used game trading and online-only gaming would be incorporated into the functionality of the new Xbox. Thankfully, Microsoft has carefully listened to our feedback and outlined some very specific and simple guidelines that will make everyone’s experience enjoyable.
“Since unveiling our plans for Xbox One, my team and I have heard directly from many of you, read your comments and listened to your feedback. I would like to take the opportunity today to thank you for your assistance in helping us to reshape the future of Xbox One.
You told us how much you loved the flexibility you have today with games delivered on disc. The ability to lend, share, and resell these games at your discretion is of incredible importance to you. Also important to you is the freedom to play offline, for any length of time, anywhere in the world.
So, today I am announcing the following changes to Xbox One and how you can play, share, lend, and resell your games exactly as you do today on Xbox 360. Here is what that means:
- 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.
These changes will impact some of the scenarios we previously announced for Xbox One. The sharing of games will work as it does today, you will simply share the disc. Downloaded titles cannot be shared or resold. Also, similar to today, playing disc based games will require that the disc be in the tray.
We appreciate your passion, support and willingness to challenge the assumptions of digital licensing and connectivity. While we believe that the majority of people will play games online and access the cloud for both games and entertainment, we will give consumers the choice of both physical and digital content. We have listened and we have heard loud and clear from your feedback that you want the best of both worlds.
Thank you again for your candid feedback. Our team remains committed to listening, taking feedback and delivering a great product for you later this year.”
This is a very powerful example of how consumer input can help shape a product. Microsoft isn’t trying to control or ruin anyone’s gaming experience, they were simply pushing new ideas that didn’t work in the favor of everyone interested in the Xbox One. I’m glad we live in an age where outcry via social networking and blogging can be so easily accessible to these larger companies. They heard our complaints and came up with new policies that work in our favor. We’re never forced to sit back and watch as something we love changes into something we don’t. Be honest and constructive, and your voice will be heard.
This news makes me incredibly happy. I’ve wanted desperately for everyone to embrace the Xbox One and now, we don’t have a good excuse not to. Now we can all focus on what really matters at the end of the day; the games. With the dark cloud of DRM lifted, a glistening light of hope can shine on all the amazing exclusives coming to this console.