Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Microsoft & Sony - The Used Games Situation

For those who are unaware, here is some background:

We are at the verge of new generation consoles. The new Microsoft console - the Xbox One - has tons of DRM in order to prevent gamers from buying & trading used games. They constructed an elaborate system of blocking second hand games by tying them to Xbox Live accounts. It is not possible to trade Xbox One game discs - even for single player games because they are all tied to Xbox Live account. Its essentially like Steam on PC.

Sony on the other hard, made things a lot easier. By not having any DRM on used games.

I imagine there was a conversation between the companies that went something like this:

Microsoft: Hey Sony. We came up with this awesome new plan to make a ton of money!

Sony: Oh yeah? What is it?

Microsoft: Well, seeing as how with the current consoles, we do not get any share from second hand sales, how about we implement a system that would block them from trading games by tying them to an online account? This way, gamers cannot hand over a disc to a friend! We will make it mandatory to enter a serial code, which we are totally going to sell. This is going to bring in tons of second hand revenue!

Sony: That sounds like a great idea! You guys should totally build a system!

Microsoft: But for this to work, we both need to be in on it. This will mean a lot of money for both of us!

Sony: Oh yeah! Absolutely. We hate it when gamers decide to give their discs to their friends - like they own it after they paid for it once!

Microsoft: Yep! We are also thinking about making it mandatory for the console to have to be online at least once every 24 hours....just to make sure the gamers aren't up to any mischief.

Sony: That is a great idea! The more control we have, the less control they have! What could go wrong with that! Nothing, I say!

Microsoft: So we can count on your support?

Sony: Oh yeah man. You got it.

Meanwhile they are thinking

Sony plans to destroy Microsoft at E3!Sony's reaction to Microsoft's DRM policy

Then E3 happens, and Sony releases this video: 


And in their conference, they totally screwed over Microsoft in a dazzling display of capitalism:


At the end, I imagine this is what Microsoft is thinking:
Microsoft don't have a clue about what happened

And the rest of the world is thinking:


The world is confused about Microsoft's decisions