#1 Posted by Jrad (621 posts) -

Dark Souls is on sale on Steam right now for $7.49. I heard it's pretty good, so now's as good a time as any to pick it up, I thought. I bought it. It booted up and I needed to log in to Games for Windows Live. Okay, sure, whatever. I signed in using my hotmail account. This was also the account that was attached to my gamertag way back in 2004 or so, whenever I got the original Xbox. I think I was like 9 years old at the time, and apparently, it was created as a 'child account'. My mom's hotmail account was attached as the 'parent' account.

I bought a launch 360 and used that gamertag for years until my Xbox RROD'd in 2010 while playing RDR. I barely played console games at that point, so no biggie, it wasn't worth getting repaired. I wouldn't get to see the ending to RDR, but that's okay, because it'd come to PC eventually (right?). So I hadn't signed into my Xbox account in 3 years.

"Parental approval is required."

Now, not 3 hours ago, I loaded up my first GFWL game, signed into my hotmail account, and typed in my product key. My gamertag was what my 9-year-old self chose, and it was terrible, but that's okay, because I can change it, or so I thought. To actually change my Xbox gamertag, I needed to give Microsoft 800 points. I already had 250 points in the account (thanks, past me!), but I'd need to somehow buy another 550 to afford a gamertag change. Apparently they don't offer points in packages of 550 though so I'd need to spend $14.50 and buy a full 1000. Haha, okay Microsoft, whatever. I just got my first credit card a couple of weeks ago, having reached the age of majority and moved across the country, away from my parents. So I click to add a payment method.

Hahaha no of course that doesn't work. I need approval from my parent account to even attach a credit card. Except I haven't talked to my mom in months and we're on really bad terms (like she won't answer my calls kind of bad). So I can't even give Microsoft money to change my name. Let's promote my account, I thought! So I contacted support and they told me I needed access to the parent account and offered to help me 'recover' it. Well, I'm pretty sure my mom still uses it and accessing her account and changing its password without permission is illegal.

The funny thing is, I can't even make a new gamertag and play Dark Souls with that — the product key's already registered to my crippled 'child' account.

What the fuck are you doing, Microsoft?

#2 Posted by MB (11968 posts) -
Moderator
#3 Posted by chrissedoff (2075 posts) -

You never changed your account. How is this anyone's fault but yours?

#4 Edited by konig_kei (596 posts) -

Why dont you just buy dark souls again, it's 7.50 vs 14.50 to change your name.

#5 Edited by Jrad (621 posts) -

@mb said:

I hate to be the one to say this, but...did you search for a solution? Anyway, the issue is that child accounts don't automatically upgrade to "parent" accounts. There are several easy ways to accomplish this...here's a starting point.

http://majornelson.com/2007/11/30/child-account-graduation-and-changing-live-id-association/

I did search, yes. There's no solution. Trying to access any account settings on my child account prompts me to sign into the parent account (i.e., my mom's account.). They've changed it since the 6 years ago that article was written.

@chrissedoff said:

You never changed your account. How is this anyone's fault but yours?

Why should I have to? No, serious question -- how does this make any sense, at all? Who is this protecting? What purpose does this serve? And why is it possible to lock a product key to a functionally useless account, without any warning that it's useless? It's just endless red tape.

Edit:

Why dont you just buy dark souls again, it's 7.50 vs 14.50 to change your name.

Steam doesn't let you buy a game for yourself if you already own it. I'm not sure if there's even a way to buy just a product key from Steam.

#6 Posted by isomeri (1224 posts) -

Why dont you just buy dark souls again, it's 7.50 vs 14.50 to change your name.

This is what I was thinking. Just buy the game again and make a new Xbox Live account.

#7 Posted by MB (11968 posts) -

@jrad: Have you looked through the account settings on Xbox.com?

Moderator
#8 Posted by konig_kei (596 posts) -
  1. Make a new steam account.
  2. Buy Dark Souls
  3. Copy the key
  4. make a new GFWL account
  5. put key in new GFWL account
  6. launch game from preferred steam account then choose GFWL account in game.
#9 Edited by Jrad (621 posts) -

@mb said:

@jrad: Have you looked through the account settings on Xbox.com?

Yes, they all redirect to a sign-in page for the parent account. Even talking to the Xbox support guys, they told me I'd need to sign into that account to change anything.

#10 Edited by MB (11968 posts) -

@jrad: I'm surprised that Microsoft evidently took a huge step back with this process...I'm sort of hoping that you just can't find it, but that in itself is still bad. Back when the 360 launched there was a huge issue of child accounts not being able to graduate to adult accounts at all. It took like a year for Microsoft to fix the problem, and I remember that they pushed out a dashboard update that had graduating child accounts in the settings, too. To just take all of that away and go back to the way things were in the beginning seems crazy!

I'm sure there is a procedure out there somewhere to upgrade your account. If I was you I would just start from scratch and create a new gamertag since you don't even like the one you have anyway.

Moderator
#11 Posted by Jrad (621 posts) -

  1. Make a new steam account.
  2. Buy Dark Souls
  3. Copy the key
  4. make a new GFWL account
  5. put key in new GFWL account
  6. launch game from preferred steam account then choose GFWL account in game.

This is an excellent solution, and probably what I'll wind up doing. It's kind of disgusting that this problem exists in the first place, though -- hopefully when GFWL finally keels over we'll be free from Microsoft's bullshit.

#12 Posted by AmatureIdiot (1076 posts) -

Yeah, I'm stuck in the same child account limbo. The parental login on mine is attached to a long dead email address so I'm pretty stuck. I found usually you can get what you need if you log into Xbox.com. Luckily, my 360 has been basically abandoned at this point, but it's still a really shitty system.

#13 Posted by Bollard (5246 posts) -

@jrad said:

@konig_kei said:
  1. Make a new steam account.
  2. Buy Dark Souls
  3. Copy the key
  4. make a new GFWL account
  5. put key in new GFWL account
  6. launch game from preferred steam account then choose GFWL account in game.

This is an excellent solution, and probably what I'll wind up doing. It's kind of disgusting that this problem exists in the first place, though -- hopefully when GFWL finally keels over we'll be free from Microsoft's bullshit.

It already did.

#14 Posted by nsmb2_mario (72 posts) -

I remember when I reached the age of majority.

#15 Posted by crusader8463 (14413 posts) -

We get calls like these at work all the time because you can't download anything off the microsoft phone store unless the main account on the phone is of legal age. I would imagine this is the same thing here. How old are you by the way? Even though you might be 18 some places have the legal age set to 20 something before you can do this. If this is the case you are just fucked unless you want to wait the years out or make a new account, because even if you go in and change the birthday after the fact it is always based off of the first date of birth you put in there.

#16 Posted by Humanity (8802 posts) -

@jrad: Sure it would be nice if the accounts graduated naturally, but I'm guessing that Microsoft assumes you would be able to get your "parent" to access their account and change things around when that time comes. I mean this wouldn't be a huge deal if you could just ask your mom to help you out, which kind of makes you seem like an edge case.

#17 Posted by Bocam (3670 posts) -

Use your need/want to play Dark Souls as a chance to reconnect with your Mom. You should be happy Microsoft's giving you this chance.

Microsoft helping families grow closer one child account at a time.

#18 Posted by c0l0nelp0c0rn1 (1803 posts) -

Hey, so, GFWL is shutting down in about a year. So...just wait for that to get patched out or forgotten?

#19 Posted by Gamer_152 (14051 posts) -

I remember having to deal with all that parent account a while ago. I think it's cool that Microsoft are putting means in there to help parents control what their kids are doing with games, but the fact those accounts don't just automatically upgrade to adult accounts makes the whole thing needlessly finicky.

Moderator
#20 Edited by senrat (311 posts) -

My father died and and I needed to type in his information to install an update. I couldnt upgrade my account because I couldnt download the update to make it ito the account management. I had to call support and they referred me to a certain person who took care of it for me. It was frustating at first but it seems this is not a rare issue. The support guy told me he had just talked to another person who's parent had died and couldnt access their account. The whole child account thing is rediculous. I got my 360 when I was 12 or 13 and I had to deal with child account for 6 years.

#21 Posted by billymagnum (718 posts) -

You never changed your account. How is this anyone's fault but yours?

Dont you know about the BEEF method of living?

Blame

Everyone

Else

Forever

#22 Posted by xyzygy (9891 posts) -

I fail to see how this is MS's fault. You know you can create a new XBL account right?

#23 Posted by Jrad (621 posts) -

@xyzygy said:

I fail to see how this is MS's fault. You know you can create a new XBL account right?

I'd have to buy another copy of Dark Souls (which would require I create a new steam account) because my product key is locked to my 'child' account.

I'm not really sure why people are defending Microsoft here, except out of obstinacy. Why am I expected to know that my GFWL account is a child account? Seriously. There was no warning. I hadn't logged into that account in years. I wasn't even aware that it was a child account when I actually used it. You can say it's my fault for not switching account types, but jesus, Microsoft's who created these account subdivisions in the first place. When my 360 broke, I figured I was done with Xbox Live forever. Honestly, I never understood the hate for GFWL originally, but having experienced it firsthand, I can say it really is terrible. The sooner PC gaming can abandon MS altogether, the better.

#24 Edited by xyzygy (9891 posts) -

@jrad said:

@xyzygy said:

I fail to see how this is MS's fault. You know you can create a new XBL account right?

I'd have to buy another copy of Dark Souls (which would require I create a new steam account) because my product key is locked to my 'child' account.

I'm not really sure why people are defending Microsoft here, except out of obstinacy. Why am I expected to know that my GFWL account is a child account? Seriously. There was no warning. I hadn't logged into that account in years. I wasn't even aware that it was a child account when I actually used it. You can say it's my fault for not switching account types, but jesus, Microsoft's who created these account subdivisions in the first place. When my 360 broke, I figured I was done with Xbox Live forever. Honestly, I never understood the hate for GFWL originally, but having experienced it firsthand, I can say it really is terrible. The sooner PC gaming can abandon MS altogether, the better.

All you need to do is call them. I guarantee you 100% that they won't leave you out in the cold.

#25 Posted by Fattony12000 (7037 posts) -

#crippledchildaccounts

#26 Posted by Humanity (8802 posts) -

@xyzygy said:

@jrad said:

@xyzygy said:

I fail to see how this is MS's fault. You know you can create a new XBL account right?

I'd have to buy another copy of Dark Souls (which would require I create a new steam account) because my product key is locked to my 'child' account.

I'm not really sure why people are defending Microsoft here, except out of obstinacy. Why am I expected to know that my GFWL account is a child account? Seriously. There was no warning. I hadn't logged into that account in years. I wasn't even aware that it was a child account when I actually used it. You can say it's my fault for not switching account types, but jesus, Microsoft's who created these account subdivisions in the first place. When my 360 broke, I figured I was done with Xbox Live forever. Honestly, I never understood the hate for GFWL originally, but having experienced it firsthand, I can say it really is terrible. The sooner PC gaming can abandon MS altogether, the better.

All you need to do is call them. I guarantee you 100% that they won't leave you out in the cold.

Yeah when I had an issue with not being able to detach your credit card from your profile (they still do this) I just contacted support and they did it. I'm fairly certain they will fix your problems. Microsoft is simply making a system that is theoretically supposed to keep 12 year old kids from being able to play games like Dark Souls. They're not monsters, honest.