In may seem harsh, but in our era of digital piracy, video game console makers are taking up swords to defend themselves. Consider the announcement of the new Xbox One, a lesser gaming marvel than your supped up PC, but still stocked with motion control and voice commands to name a few new features. That announcement a few weeks back has gamers in uproar for its used game fee and required internet connectivity. What it means is that gamers can no longer play online without purchasing a new title or paying an additional fee — more money for the video game makers from the pockets of people like us. Forcing users to connect with Xbox’s online service every 24-hours or so also means that pirated or “flashed” games will brick your Xbox no matter how hard you try to keep it alive and under-the-radar from Microsoft’s eyes.
Let’s face it. “Flashing” your Xbox to play pirated games is in fact taking a game from the Internet without paying for it. However, putting an additional cost on a used game you buy is seen as a greedy act over which fans are ready to battle. Digital rights management (DRM) strategies for the world’s biggest console makers — Microsoft and Sony — could also see only a few select retailers with the liberty of reselling games. All this, increases the frustration of its fans before the launch or even the reveal of the next generation of consoles. PlayStation aficionados have taken to social media to voice their detest and concerns over rumors of PlayStation 4’s used game policy.
Has the console entertainment industry irked its fans in an age where consoles appear to be well, but on its way out? If the battle over top console dog still remains, the company with a favorable DRM strategy could end up on top, because sales will depend on fans who may choose between the lesser of two costs.