234 Comments
Posted by 5p3ktro

Yeah! Capitalism strikes again!

Posted by Ares42

It's strange how much of a difference an hour can make. Grats to Klepek for getting it out in time, but still, by the time I got the news it was already confirmed. I bet yesterdays traffic numbers is a great way to justify the desicion to still keep him around even when he moves though.

Online
Posted by Nekroskop

Now there's a chance I'll pick this up later, it's still 100 bucks more(probably even worse in some territories) and has a weaker GPU and worse RAM.

Posted by Sordel

Microsoft had to do this, because they've given it a month and they just can't shake this story; every interview that they gave (and they were giving fewer interviews than they would have wanted) was dominated by this issue, and every interview they give for the next month will be dominated by the about-turn. Moreover, the publishers and developers were quietly distancing themselves from the used game story, so they were getting no supporters at all. I think that the capitulation was more driven by responses from commercial partners than it was by public outrage.

Now they've done the right thing they can maybe come out and push a more positive story, but they're still well behind. Sony didn't have to put much advertising spend behind the first round of the contest and they got millions of dollars' worth of good publicity. On top of which they're still cheaper and don't have the Kinect, which is in itself an advantage to those who got burned by it in its first version. Moreover, Sony does seem to have secured more indie affection and support, which may count to some.

So, M$ is hardly in good shape. From my point of view, though, XBox One went from my "never buy" column to my "won't buy on launch" column, and if you aggregate that response over millions of potential customers, that's a win for Microsoft.

Edited by FuriousJodo

People, come on, don't be gullible. They had this whole concept of "futureproofing" the console with their ideas that ignored everything the consumer said. It was so draconian in comparison to Sony, and that made the whole world cry so loud that they had to change their whole concept just to be sure they make a profit. They are now doing something they don't agree with, and I can't trust them that they won't make some crazy shit up again. It's $100 more expensive, the hardware is weaker, the controller is not better and there are less exclusive. If you don't agree with my first point (being that we have to stand up against corporations or they will do whatever the fuck they want), you clearly see the facts I listed in the end. If you have money, get all three consoles, if not, there is no question that the PS4 is more bang for even less buck.

What I meant is, if we support Microsoft now, it just means everyone can try to get away with crazy policies and then correct them afterwards, if we show them we are not impressed by their "change", we will ensure that all future ideas are consumer orientated firstly

Yeah - let's punish companies that drastically change their policies in response to what their customers want. Seriously - this is ONLY a good thing. Sony is not your BFF, neither is MS, at the end of the day we are dealing with two very large corporations, both at this point seem to actually be listening to us. There is nothing wrong with what happened here.

Posted by Zevvion

Why is patrick getting so much praise? An anonymous source willingly gave him info that was getting announced today anyway. Stop treating this like it's All the Presidents Men.

This is his job. He works for a high profile site. His credibility was on the line. He managed to verify and write the story accurately before it was officially announced.

I don't understand how you can't see that's great work on his part.

Edited by ohms

All the DRM/online-only will be added back in a couple years when their install base is sufficiently large. They've just had to put it off for a while because of Sony, but it will be back.

Edited by TwoLines

@thomascro said:

People, come on, don't be gullible. They had this whole concept of "futureproofing" the console with their ideas that ignored everything the consumer said. It was so draconian in comparison to Sony, and that made the whole world cry so loud that they had to change their whole concept just to be sure they make a profit. They are now doing something they don't agree with, and I can't trust them that they won't make some crazy shit up again. It's $100 more expensive, the hardware is weaker, the controller is not better and there are less exclusive. If you don't agree with my first point (being that we have to stand up against corporations or they will do whatever the fuck they want), you clearly see the facts I listed in the end. If you have money, get all three consoles, if not, there is no question that the PS4 is more bang for even less buck.

What I meant is, if we support Microsoft now, it just means everyone can try to get away with crazy policies and then correct them afterwards, if we show them we are not impressed by their "change", we will ensure that all future ideas are consumer orientated firstly

Yeah - let's punish companies that drastically change their policies in response to what their customers want. Seriously - this is ONLY a good thing. Sony is not your BFF, neither is MS, at the end of the day we are dealing with two very large corporations, both at this point seem to actually be listening to us. There is nothing wrong with what happened here.

Totally agree. I've never seen anything like this happen in the industry, ever. Good for them.

Posted by TheRedDeath

"It's fucking crazy."

Posted by Korolev

As pleased as I am for this change, I do feel a twinge of sympathy for the engineers at Microsoft, who no doubt have spent at least a year putting this network system together.... only to be told that it is no longer required. For gamers and customers, this is good. But I got to feel a bit sorry for those people who have seen all their work go up in smoke.

Edited by selbie

Both companies are throwing heavy hits right now and I feel like this could pan out to be a win-win situation for consumers.

Edited by courage_wolf

Honestly, I wanted Microsoft to go through with this to see how it turned out. I respect the negative opinions about the former Xbox One DRM policies and people should speak out for what they want. My problem with it is that the people who were angry were taking a short view of not being able to use discs the same way they do now. From what I was reading Microsoft was trying to take a long view on game distribution. It should be obvious that the future of video games is approaching all digital downloads and Microsoft appeared to want to get in on that future now and help shape it. They discussed some interesting ideas about game sharing and reselling digital content that I hope remain a part of the system. Mostly I hoped that the long term goal of Microsoft was building a Steam like console. Valve got a very similar reaction when they mandated that Half Life 2 be connected with Steam to be played. They got a lot of shit and Steam sucked for a long time, but they stuck to their guns and now Steam is the best video game platform by a huge margin. If Microsoft had been able to accomplish even half of what Steam has on the Xbox One it would have made for an amazing console but without the DRM foundation Microsoft basically cannot peruse that type of system. I'm disappointed that we will never know the original vision for the Xbox One and see it evolve as it was initially intended, regardless of whether it would be good or bad.

On the immediate topic of console wars, now that the biggest hurdle for Microsoft is out of the way I wonder if people are going to get mad at Sony charging for multiplayer on PS4. They really lucked out with the timing of that announcement, have people already accepted it or will people feel emboldened by Microsoft caving to consumer pressure and start calling for Sony to have free multiplayer on PS4?

Edited by Thiefsie

All of you crying for the engineers in this need to wake up - that is the reality of any creative field... That it can be scrapped on a whim. I deal with this regularly (being an Architect) and it is just part of the job... Those engineers aren't exactly creatives so are used to it a lot less granted, but to be blunt, they have been paid for it and that is what they do. They should not feel less of themselves or the work they have done because management made them do something rather retarded to begin with.

On a side note - I call that MS will bring back draconian DRM policies very similar if not the same as originally intended within 24months after XBONE launch.

Count me turned away and pro PS4 now as I was before. Everything about PS just reeks of quality and an actual focus on gaming. It is evident with PS3 and X360 and it is even more evident with everything we know about PS4 and XBone.

Edited by lordgodalming

"This wipes away most of what Sony did."

Jeff's head has been up Microsoft's ass for this whole ordeal. Not only does this not wipe anything Sony did, it also doesn't wipe away what Microsoft tried to do. They made big mistakes, and I hope they continue trying to improve their platform in favor of customers.

Edited by fishburger7

Hmm feels like i just caught Microsoft trying to steal out of my back pocket an now there gonna try and pretend like it never happened, Well unless they bring the price of xbone down by a hundred pound or so i think il still be going with ps4

Posted by hustlerlt

At this point I don't even care, I'm not getting an Xbone.

Edited by kishinfoulux

People are really hating on Patrick for breaking the biggest story of the year? You know the thing that's his main forte? Geez people, give the man his props.

Posted by Marokai

@lordgodalming said:

"This wipes away most of what Sony did."

Jeff's head has been up Microsoft's ass for this whole ordeal. Not only does this not wipe anything Sony did, it also doesn't wipe away what Microsoft tried to do. They made big mistakes, and I hope they continue trying to improve their platform in favor of customers.

The super ridiculous thing is, if you listened to the most recent Bombcast, they're all seemingly willing to continue to hold Sony to task for stupid shit they said seven years ago, but anything outrageous Microsoft has done in the last several months? All forgiven and apparently destroys anything good Sony has done. At this point I don't even think it's on purpose, it's just some grand cognitive dissonance that seems to affect everyone on the staff except Vinny.

Edited by Cold_Wolven

What a wacky day for video games, never thought to see Microsoft become humbled by the internet into reversing their plans. Also now I know why the GB website has been down for a portion of today and now I'm intrigued what juicy rumors Scoops hears next.

Posted by demontrace

OSTENSIBLY!!

It will make an appearance at least once in every video. :)

Edited by lordgodalming

@marokai: I was especially surprised at how they all happily made fun of Sony as much as possible when they had Sony reps on the show, but were very supportive of the Microsoft guy when he was on (as professionals should be to any guest).

To be fair, Patrick also seems to be opening his mind to all parties. He's had flattering things to say about all consoles, including the media whipping children Wii U and Vita, in the last several months. Sad to see him leaving the nest.

Posted by gamerpigeon

EA must be pissed given how they reversed their stance on Online Passes (which i never had a problem with) but now they are going to have to reissue them aren't they?

Posted by m0nty

Three things...

1. Props to Patrick for breaking this story, and giantbomb.com and xbox.com.

2. Sony must love this. Not only does it make them look like rockstars, but they can lay claim to helping change Microsoft policy and level the playing field with publishers. Now XBox is in the same boat. Previously they had publishers with them.

3. This is straight up great news for gamers. People scoffed at the internet for its reaction but the last week has shown that these companies must listen to their audience or expect to be slaughtered at the registers come November.

Posted by thatdutchguy

Patrick saved all of the video games.

On to the next thing that needs saving,Patrick! Fly away now, to your next adventure.

Posted by jimmy_p

Meanwhile in Europe and Japan:

nobody still cares about their cablebox and tv features

Posted by Carlos1408

The people have spoken!!! Glad this has happened, it proves we still have power as consumers! Thanks for the story Patrick good job, you will be missed. I was wondering last night when reading the story if that was the cause of the website's slowness. Real deal!

But to be honest, I'm still going with a PC and perhaps a Wii U down the line. Still don't really trust Mircrosoft, who knows they might turn it around again. I'm going with a wait and see approach, it is still possible that in a few years I'll own all the consoles. Of course, I'll need the money for that.

Edited by der_dreh

Mind blown.

Also, since I personally was ok with how it worked before, I'm a little sad to see some cool features go. (I am however really hyped over them dropping region lock. F*ck Yeah.)

But since I buy everything digital anyway, I just wait and hope they put some features back in later for the digital releases.

Oh, and great work killing the site ;)

Now the next time I try to open giantbomb.com and it doesn't work, I'll be like "OMG WHAT DID PATRICK POST?"

Posted by amardilo

What does Dave Lang got to hide?

That needs to be Scoops first assignment in Chicago.

Edited by Tidel

Honestly, I wanted Microsoft to go through with this to see how it turned out. I respect the negative opinions about the former Xbox One DRM policies and people should speak out for what they want. My problem with it is that the people who were angry were taking a short view of not being able to use discs the same way they do now. From what I was reading Microsoft was trying to take a long view on game distribution. It should be obvious that the future of video games is approaching all digital downloads and Microsoft appeared to want to get in on that future now and help shape it. They discussed some interesting ideas about game sharing and reselling digital content that I hope remain a part of the system. Mostly I hoped that the long term goal of Microsoft was building a Steam like console. Valve got a very similar reaction when they mandated that Half Life 2 be connected with Steam to be played. They got a lot of shit and Steam sucked for a long time, but they stuck to their guns and now Steam is the best video game platform by a huge margin. If Microsoft had been able to accomplish even half of what Steam has on the Xbox One it would have made for an amazing console but without the DRM foundation Microsoft basically cannot peruse that type of system. I'm disappointed that we will never know the original vision for the Xbox One and see it evolve as it was initially intended, regardless of whether it would be good or bad.

On the immediate topic of console wars, now that the biggest hurdle for Microsoft is out of the way I wonder if people are going to get mad at Sony charging for multiplayer on PS4. They really lucked out with the timing of that announcement, have people already accepted it or will people feel emboldened by Microsoft caving to consumer pressure and start calling for Sony to have free multiplayer on PS4?

Fair points and well stated.

But the Microsoft view wasn't long -- or it was too long, and they were unable to see what was in front of them.

The best way to facilitate digital distribution on consoles is to incentivize it, not force it. It is already more convenient, but the trade-off has always been a fluidity of ownership.

MS has now set this up as an either/or proposition -- either all digital, or no digital ownership rights. They continue to treat this as a war with and on consumers. They could have changed the conversation and backed Sony into a corner on digital rights, because it was one thing MS had going for it Sony hadn't even touched on. But they didn't.

I genuinely think MS isn't fighting back here. I think they're flailing. These aren't the moves of a company responding smartly to challenge -- they are bullish, reactionary, and demonstrate the same lack of foresight that put them in this position in the first place.

Posted by Fimbulherjan

@dethfish said:

Yeah, ok, but what did Drew need the box for?

Posted by peritus

@jimmy_p said:

Meanwhile in Europe and Japan:

nobody still cares about their cablebox and tv features

This is so true.

Posted by Scubasteve1974

Nice! I never thought these policies would end up being enforced. But it is surprising how fast MS turned around on them. Good for gamers and ultimately it will be good for MS as well. Both consoles will eventually get their wish when all games go digital, but you can't force the issue, which I think MS learned a valuable lesson there. And once that happens I believe prices will equalize and MS and Sony both will see the value in competitively pricing their games. This is good for gamers ultimately so Sony won't run away with this generation which I believe they were poised to do. Now both companies will have to strive and really play to the consumers.

Jeff did you put some gel in your hair bro? Keep it up!

Oh and Skid Row! fk yay!

Posted by Kadayi

I'm envisioning the post E3 Xbone debrief was probably something akin to a Glengarry Ross beat down.

Good on them to see sense and realise that they were F'd, but at the same time they're really going to have to do a lot of work in order to turn around the public perception. They're still batting over the PS4 with regard to cost and albeit the Kinnect is included, they need to get it clear in peoples minds that they're bringing 'added value' Vs the PS4 somehow.

Edited by Tesla

@kadayi said:

Good on them to see sense and realise that they were F'd, but at the same time they're really going to have to do a lot of work in order to turn around the public perception. They're still batting over the PS4 with regard to cost and albeit the Kinnect is included, they need to get it clear in peoples minds that they're bringing 'added value' Vs the PS4 somehow.

Agreed. I think that will be difficult to prove the added value though. Not only do they have to convince people that the Kinect is worth the extra $100; they have to convince people that Kinect plus a console that is potentially 50% less powerful than the competition is worth the extra $100. Of course they just won't even mention the latter and the average consumer won't know about that either. But it's still a hurdle for them. I'm just glad they're moving in the right direction. Competition like this only benefits the consumer.

Love the Glengarry reference by the way!

Edited by ICantBeStopped

@rain_elbows said:

It's funny watching people fall all over congratulating Patrick, except everyone who reads GAF knows this story was actually broken by an obscure site called Whathifi.com. They even tweeted it out about an hour before it was on GB.

http://m.neogaf.com/showthread.php?t=596581&page=1

He wasn't the first one but only Whathifi.com and him had actually got stories out making claims about this before official confirmation came(the other sites were just citing these two as source) so he's pretty much right there with Whathifi.com in breaking the story.

In addition, no one cares about whatever that site is.

Posted by cbarnes86

Viva la Gamefly!

Posted by RecSpec

I just hope this is really a case of MS listening to the consumers rather than MS reacting to GameStop pushing the PS4.

Posted by paulwade1984

Amazing work there Patrick. Posting the information in that text message before anyone else. I wish I could scoop that hard.

Posted by CaptMagic123

I now am considering getting an Xbox One, the only thing that's stopping me is the fact that the Kinect is still a mandatory thing for proper use of the console.

Edited by DG991

Giantbomb won.

Edited by VibratingDonkey

@jimmy_p said:

Meanwhile in Europe and Japan:

nobody still cares about their cablebox and tv features

We care bout tha games tho.
US TV nonsense and whatnot doesn't add value, but it doesn't remove any either.

Posted by TinyGrasshopper

I was saddened that when I finally read that Patrick was the first to break this story, that Giantbomb was down. I had to read it from a few other sources before I finally had a chance to read the original report. Great job reporting this.

At this time everyone is making a big deal about Microsoft flip-flopping in regards to their policy, but the truth is that in a few years time no one is going to look back on the policies suggested by either company this year as the "make it or break it" moment. While thousands of devoted hard-core gamers are clambering to write on every thread about their issues, the reality is that a system is more dependent on the response of the mass consumer. The hundreds of thousands of units that will move within the first week of each of their launches is primarily based on these mass consumers, and the voice of the die-hard fan only diminishes over time. Though it has been highly entertaining to watch this battle unfold, most of what we are hearing about now have little influence on the future of these systems.

It's actually the opposite. The hardcore gamers are the influencers, and the initial sales are made by the most enthusiastic. The perception trickles down from the influencers to the mass consumers, if the conditions are right for it.

Look at a typical Apple release. The people who wait in line in the very beginning, are not the mass consumers, but the most enthusiastic apple fanboys.

There's no evidence that this will have any effect, in the long term strategically, but it might have a contributory affect if they continued to make more mistakes like that leading up to launch. Right now it's not about long-term strategy, it's about short-term tactics. The next year will be absolutely critical for Sony and Microsoft and they cannot f-ck up at all. They just need to get their install bases as big as possible in the next year.

Which is why it's a really good move that Microsoft just cut this off as soon as possible. I know for me, coming out of E3, the price difference and the DRM made xbox one an absolute non-starter. If they had stuck with it up to launch, I think a lot of people would be thinking this way. Now the field is a lot more balanced. Now it's just a matter of gauging whether the value of all the TV features is worth the $100. I don't give a shit about Kinect. If it had a DVR and not just live TV, it would be a done deal for me. I'd be getting the XBox. But right now it doesn't, and I like having $100.

Posted by RD_21

@jayjonesjunior: I agree that it makes them look bad in a way. If they TRULY believe in a always connected world they had to sell it to people and tell them why it was good and the way to go, but the fact that they've backed up tell me that even them couldn't find ways to back themselves up.

Edited by Godlyawesomeguy

Man, if Sony came back and ADDED DRM, that'd be fucking hilarious.

Posted by DoctorWelch

This news actually makes me pissed at Sony, Microsoft, and stupid idiots on the internet. We had the digital future in our wake. It was right there in front of us with all the awesome benefits that come along with it, even if Microsoft wasn't properly explaining them, and now we have to wait because too many morons fucked it up for us on along the way.

Microsoft shat the bed in the worst way possible by failing to explain why their policies would be beneficial. Sony can't really be blamed for taking the best road to success for their company, but at the same time none of this flip flopping would have happened if they just went along for the ride as well. And lastly, all the stupid, irrational children on the interent flipping out about something they know nothing about is probably the most annoying part of it all.

I know tons of people that have current generation game consoles, and not one of them can remember a time when they actually played the console offline. Oh, and you know how you "can't borrow games"? Well, instead of borrowing one game your friend can borrow your ENTIRE FUCKING COLLECTION and just play it when you aren't on by signing into your name. Then, if you really find yourself in a situation where you like borrowing games you can use the family feature which means more than one person can play that game at a time. The benefits out way the small inconveniences by a long shot for a large majority of users, yet people on the internet bitch like crazy about things they clearly don't even understand.

This whole thing is fucked, and it really just makes me depressed about the state of games right now. I guess it just goes to show you that reality doesn't matter anymore. People don't want to stop and think logically about anything. They just want to go with their gut reactions while taking all the messaging from these corporate entities at face value. It's all about how you spin something, and not about what that thing actually means in real life. I'm still super excited for the new generation of fun games to play, but all this bull shit has made extremely embarrassed for video games as a whole. As someone who loves the medium and wants to see it mature, this whole thing has just been a debacle on all sides.

Posted by FreedomTown

Omg did Patrick paste anonymous information in to the site he works for?! Lets all praise him! :\

This is a sad day to be a GB member, seeing all these "evil DRM sheep" posting one after another.

Go read the Gizmodo article about how this was a horrible turn around by MS. I'm not going to waste time explaining things to the luddites here, but what MS was trying to do was great, for developers and consumers, it is unfortunate they caved to the vocal minority of rabid tin foil hats out there.

Edited by TehPickle

I cant wait to see if EA pull a complete U-turn on their scrapping of online passes.

I don't believe for a minute that they pulled online passes out of the goodness of their hearts. This DRM meant they didn't need to look like the bad guys anymore, and now they're heading up shit creek without a paddle.

Poor lambs.

EDIT: Apparently EA will NOT be changing their arrangements: http://www.destructoid.com/ea-won-t-bring-back-its-online-pass-program-256663.phtml

I was hoping for some more juicy soapbox drama.

Edited by Aarny91

I still believe they might start loading these features in slowly when people actually start buying the console. It might not happen, but I'm being prepared. Still, this is great news for gamers everywhere.

Posted by gbrading

Patrick Klepek: Breaking Stories, Breaking Hearts. :P