It’s really easy to hate on Microsoft right now, and for good reason — the more we heard about their draconian rules for the Xbox One, the more we never wanted to pick up an Xbox controller ever again. Apparently, however, Microsoft’s grokked just how angry even the most lenient of gamers are right now, because they’ve announced a complete reversal of practically every single policy that’s gotten heat from critics. Wait, really? Just like that? Well, now things are about to get interesting.
What we’re getting from multiple sources, as well as the just-launched official report, is that that Microsoft will be “moving away” from the more ridiculous measures such as 24-hour check-ins and used game restrictions. In other words, everything that you’ve been complaining about? They’ve “heard” all that “feedback” and now they’ve changed their minds completely.
Okay, well, maybe not completely, because according to the beginning of their update they still seem pretty pleased in their original ideas:
As is our heritage with Xbox, we designed a system that could take full advantage of advances in technology in order to deliver a breakthrough in game play and entertainment. We imagined a new set of benefits such as easier roaming, family sharing, and new ways to try and buy games. We believe in the benefits of a connected, digital future.
Here’s the gist of what they’re changing:
- You won’t need to be online in order to play games. Downloaded games will work just the same online as they do offline if they’re single-player.
- Games will work on the Xbox One just as they do on the 360, meaning that when you put a disc in to play, it’ll just play. No linking to single accounts and no not being able to loan the physical game out to friends. In fact, there’ll be no more restrictions on loaning or trading games at all.
- Your Xbox won’t need to check into every 24 hours anymore.
- No more region locks, so you can play an Xbox One anywhere even if it hasn’t been released in your country’s market yet.
- The family sharing plan will basically no longer exist, because the account link that would have enabled it is gone.
So now, the only real differences between PS4 and Xbox One are the $100 jump in price and the exclusive games you’d be getting on either console. Well, that and Microsoft servers might be a bit less capable than Sony’s, given that so many people have jumped onto the official report that it wouldn’t load properly for, like, twenty minutes.
It’s not totally clear why they’re doing this now since they’ve spent every waking moment since E3 justifying all this bullshit, but I’m not about to look a gift console in the mouth. Then again, I’m still sort of mad that they even tried to pull all of this off in the first place, so I might stay away from the Xbox One on principle. No telling how many people will do the same.
- But can Don Mattrick take back his dumb attitude as easily?
- At least now we can all just be earnestly excited for Titanfall
- Wonder what CliffyB will have to say about DRM now