Ready for some bad news? Good, because if you’re planning on getting and Xbox One, I have lots of it.
Seeing the near-unanimous confusion surrounding their next console, Microsoft decided to clarify their position on trading in used games, loaning games to friends, the always-on Kinect and the Xbox One’s required Internet connection. Sounds good, right? From a PR perspective, yes. Because now we know. Unfortuantely, the news is essentially all bad.
Let’s start this off with the bad news.
On the subject of whether or not the Xbox One will support used games sales, the answer is a “probably not.” Microsoft has decided to put this decision into the capable hands of video game publishers, who will decide whether or not their games can be traded in. It’s worth mentioning that of the group of people who are very much against the selling of used games — because they don’t make any money off them — publishers make up about 90% of them.
That “required Internet connection?” That’s confirmed. Every 24 hours the Xbox One will need to connect to the Internet for you to be able to continue using it to play games. For those of you in the military or traveling abroad, Microsoft has bigger things to worry about. Like, say, the possibility that their servers get hacked or go offline — this happened to Sony last year, resulting in over a month of downtime — which will quickly transform every Xbox One into a pricey paperweight.
How about loaning games? Sure, you can totally do that, so long as you don’t mind a few restrictions. Microsoft is still “exploring the possibilities” with their partners, but they have confirmed this feature won’t be available at launch. With that said, there will be something called an Xbox One “Family” where you can share all your content among ten people.
The good news?
Well, you can turn the Kinect off.
The Xbox 360 has, in my opinion, won this console generation. I love everything about it, outside of its awful dashboard. This makes all of the above news especially difficult to see, because it’s the very definition of anti-consumer. As of right now, the Xbox One is only barely on my radar as a potential future purchase.
For as bummed out as I am, Francis is like, crazy pissed.