XBox Live...Yes, Paying Is A Big Deal

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Posted by Sammo21 (3021 posts) -

Short post on this, solely because it was brought up by a friend:

Why do we still pay to be able to play on Xbox live and why do people defend it so vigorously? Not only do we pay for XBox Live, the price was just hiked up $10 for no real reason at all. Is it because of Last.FM? Well, I don't use that so if so you can have that back. Is it because of Netflix? My iphone, my laptop, my computer, my PS3, and pretty soon my 3DS will support Netflix and I don't pay extra for it. I already pay to use Netflix as it is, why are we paying Microsoft? Do you think that paying for Xbox Live means you are getting enhanced security, because you aren't...paying for XBL and not paying for PSN has nothing to do with hacks or infrastructure. This is a horse that I've beat for years and defenders never give good reasons as to why.

Sometimes you'll hear "because we get party chat and all the xbox live video content". Again, how about you take that back? I don't want your crappy Zune store, I don't use Last.FM, I don't give a crap about any of your original (and bad) video content. If I am seeing ads for cars, food products, the army, and whatever else shows up why exactly do we fit the bill the at the end of the day? I wish Microsoft would just let people play online and use the features in the box, not gas tax us to death.

My friend, whom I mentioned previously, is getting a free Xbox 360 because of the deal Microsoft has when you buy a new Windows 7 PC with a student account. When I mentioned he'll have to get XBox Live to even play online he asked me why and I had no real explanation but the real sad thing? Neither does Microsoft. Take all your other junk back Microsoft. I thought paying the extra $10 for games this generation went towards stuff like that? Apparently not, but xbot fanboys keep defending it and the rest of us (yes, I'm including myself in there) just conform and move along. Why not have gold give you exclusive access to ESPN and whatever else they want to add. Making it to where I have to pay money to even have full access to a title I already paid $60+ or making me pay to watch Netflix...which I already pay for? I would say we can change it by making our voices heard and actually effecting XBL by refusing to pay and dropping subscriptions, but no one would do that all...so I guess we're doomed. Either take the lumps and don't know why or play only on every other gaming system out there that lets me play online for free...I mean that only leaves me with my PC, 3DS, PSP, PS3, DS, and iphone......

#1 Posted by Sammo21 (3021 posts) -

Short post on this, solely because it was brought up by a friend:

Why do we still pay to be able to play on Xbox live and why do people defend it so vigorously? Not only do we pay for XBox Live, the price was just hiked up $10 for no real reason at all. Is it because of Last.FM? Well, I don't use that so if so you can have that back. Is it because of Netflix? My iphone, my laptop, my computer, my PS3, and pretty soon my 3DS will support Netflix and I don't pay extra for it. I already pay to use Netflix as it is, why are we paying Microsoft? Do you think that paying for Xbox Live means you are getting enhanced security, because you aren't...paying for XBL and not paying for PSN has nothing to do with hacks or infrastructure. This is a horse that I've beat for years and defenders never give good reasons as to why.

Sometimes you'll hear "because we get party chat and all the xbox live video content". Again, how about you take that back? I don't want your crappy Zune store, I don't use Last.FM, I don't give a crap about any of your original (and bad) video content. If I am seeing ads for cars, food products, the army, and whatever else shows up why exactly do we fit the bill the at the end of the day? I wish Microsoft would just let people play online and use the features in the box, not gas tax us to death.

My friend, whom I mentioned previously, is getting a free Xbox 360 because of the deal Microsoft has when you buy a new Windows 7 PC with a student account. When I mentioned he'll have to get XBox Live to even play online he asked me why and I had no real explanation but the real sad thing? Neither does Microsoft. Take all your other junk back Microsoft. I thought paying the extra $10 for games this generation went towards stuff like that? Apparently not, but xbot fanboys keep defending it and the rest of us (yes, I'm including myself in there) just conform and move along. Why not have gold give you exclusive access to ESPN and whatever else they want to add. Making it to where I have to pay money to even have full access to a title I already paid $60+ or making me pay to watch Netflix...which I already pay for? I would say we can change it by making our voices heard and actually effecting XBL by refusing to pay and dropping subscriptions, but no one would do that all...so I guess we're doomed. Either take the lumps and don't know why or play only on every other gaming system out there that lets me play online for free...I mean that only leaves me with my PC, 3DS, PSP, PS3, DS, and iphone......

#2 Posted by Azteck (7447 posts) -

Oh hey, a blue name!
 
I'll admit it, it's bullshit and paying sucks but in the end I don't really care 'cause I enjoy the service and when it comes down to it I don't really throw a ton of money on it per year so I'm satisfied. I don't defend it vigorously, but I won't go on a rampant craze talking about how bad it is either.

#3 Posted by GrandHarrier (180 posts) -

Everything about Xbox Live is better than the alternatives from the other consoles; For the sake of being practical, this means PS3 since the Wii is an absolute joke.

#4 Posted by buft (3298 posts) -

it costs barely anything and i like the service, i use it to watch sky player on my tv, for me thats great because otherwise i would have to watch it on a laptop screen and it doesnt always work well because my processor is slow. 
 
how come i gotta pay rates even though i own my house?

#5 Posted by Lunar_Aura (2780 posts) -

People who pay for it find value and the people who don't find none.

Xbox Live's business model has long past the point of self-sustaining and it no longer has to cater to displeased individuals, let alone displeased individuals who still put money into the service via membership or marketplace.

#6 Posted by Sammo21 (3021 posts) -

@Azteck: I wish there really were tiers involved...I'd be fine with that. If all I could do on gold was have access to Netflix, online game, and the XBLA then I wouldn't have an issue but I not once have I ever turned Xbox and looked at the XBL stuff and went "oh, this is what my moneys going for". I feel that those of us who go "it works and I can't do anything otherwise" is what Microsoft wants and what they are banking on. Hell, they didn't care about cloud saves enough to even mention it in their press conference...why not make that a pay to use thing? I don't think XBL is bad, I think its strategically made in a way to put you in a corner.

#7 Posted by Sammo21 (3021 posts) -

@LunarAura: You don't find Silver/Gold tier a joke? Silver tier basically is only there to say "Sorry you really can't do anything, including watching Netflix..."

#8 Posted by mfpantst (2574 posts) -
@sammo21: Yes having a subsription revenue stream has nothing to do with funds available and man hours available to spend on information security, yet which console's network is not 100% up wordwide RIGHT NOW because of a hacker break-in?  Hmmm?
#10 Posted by Matll (18 posts) -

We get no additional services (i.e. Netflix, ESPN, Last.fm, Xbox Live Indie games...) here in Finland and have always payed 60€ for Live. Life's hard, who cares.

#11 Posted by Cincaid (2948 posts) -

@rebgav said:

To date, Xbox Live has provided me with consistent high-quality services while continuing to roll out new features. I have no problem with paying for that. Given the success of Xbox Live subs the real question is why other platforms don't charge for their services.

This guy pretty much stole my comment.

#12 Posted by nintendoeats (5975 posts) -

@GrandHarrier said:

Everything about Xbox Live is better than the alternatives from the other consoles; For the sake of being practical, this means PS3 since the Wii is an absolute joke.

Not the PC.

I agree with most of this. Online play is usually P2P, so you are essentially paying for a matchmaking service and couple of other little odds and ends. I let my XBL expire last month.

I don't mind paying, but this is an unreasonable amount, especially considering there are more ads on the Xbox dashboard than on the competing consoles.

#13 Posted by JoeyRavn (4886 posts) -

The same reason people pay for MMOs, cable TV, Internet access, etc, which is basically what @rebgav has said.

#14 Posted by SHADOWINFINITE (545 posts) -

Just wish that they would add games instantly on the street date that games are released. Save time and effort for people to just buy games from home. 

#15 Posted by Sammo21 (3021 posts) -

Again all I'm hearing is "it makes microsoft money so why not charge for it". Again, it feels like everyone is just practicing conformity. Outside of the downtime that happened last month, which honestly its not been proven that someone couldn't do the same thing to Microsoft if they tried to, Sony's service has been completely fine. Again, all I'm saying is don't charge to play online...why is that such bad thing to ask for? Again, I figured it would boil down to "well...I give them money...and they said they'd let me play online...and I can...so, yeah, I guess..."

#16 Posted by babblinmule (1262 posts) -

Based on my experiences with PSN, you get what you pay for with xbox live.

#17 Posted by Lobster_Monster (24 posts) -

I guess they could give us a free service that's super-slow and has half-assed security like PSN. Is that really preferable?

#18 Posted by Lunar_Aura (2780 posts) -

@sammo21 said:

@LunarAura: You don't find Silver/Gold tier a joke? Silver tier basically is only there to say "Sorry you really can't do anything, including watching Netflix..."

I'm speaking as a Silver member of 4+ years now and the only thing that bothered me was taking away the privilege of getting game demos at the same time as Gold members. All other "Gold Exclusive" features I can either easily do on my pc or have absolutely zero interest invested. Again, if Microsoft sees the tiers as profitable, that's all they care about. Vote with your wallet because that's the only voice corporations will hear. One may be a whimper but when done right it becomes a bloody roar.

#20 Posted by HairyMike87 (1013 posts) -
@sammo21: I'm not a huge fan of paying to play online, especially since Live does not have dedicated servers. There are ways to get around most of the Live features and still have an Xbox-like experience on other consoles. Instead of using voice chat on a system when playing with friends, why not use a third-party program on the pc (if it is near your console) and talk to your friends on that. The only reason why I started loving XboxLive was because there were games that I could only play on Xbox that were awesome, but now I'm starting to get into building a gaming PC and playing on other consoles that don't charge for non-dedicated servers.
#21 Posted by Sammo21 (3021 posts) -

@babblinmule: The only real difference that matters is party chat and that's it. The comments about a slow service are trolls as I use both XBL and PSN reguarly, almost every day. The same thing goes for security, those are either 1) trolls or 2) people who are uneducated on the topic.

#22 Posted by EpicSteve (6439 posts) -

Microsoft has the best online infrastructure. PSN is clunky, doesn't work as well as it should, and is impossible to navigate.

#23 Posted by Little_Socrates (5649 posts) -

@sammo21 said:

Again all I'm hearing is "it makes microsoft money so why not charge for it". Again, it feels like everyone is just practicing conformity.

Yes, they are. They haven't done anything yet that makes us unwilling to pay for the service, so we'll do it their way because we still want the service more than we want that $10 a month.

Also, $10 a month is not that bad. It's roughly one less Chipotlé visit, assuming you waste a little of the food you have at home.

#24 Edited by Seraphx2 (6 posts) -
@mfpantst: I bet if someone had wanted to go after Xbox Live they could have brought that down too.  It just so happens, hackers were upset with Sony, so they attack it.  
 
@Matll
: uhh, that's exactly the point.  so it's even more stupid for you to have to pay out money, just to play online?  how can you even begin to justify that when most other services let you do this for free?  you know why MS does it?  because they can and everyone just sits down and takes it.  How come, originally, they were charging 100$ for a friggin WiFi card and still waaayyy overprice HDDs? (for 100$ you can get 2TB HDDs..so because MS's has a special connector and case around it, you get charged a hefty premium for 250MB?)  Because it's MS and they can.  That's why I never bought an Xbox; I wasn't going to support such ridiculous stupidity.  The only reason I'm getting one now is because it's free (I'm the friend sammo mentioned).  I always said the only way I would ever own an Xbox or Wii is if I got one for free.  I'll obviously have to pay for the Gold subscription, but I sure as heck wasn't going to choose an XBox over a PS3 when considering what I got for my money.
#25 Posted by GrandHarrier (180 posts) -
@sammo21 said:

Again all I'm hearing is "it makes microsoft money so why not charge for it". Again, it feels like everyone is just practicing conformity. Outside of the downtime that happened last month, which honestly its not been proven that someone couldn't do the same thing to Microsoft if they tried to, Sony's service has been completely fine. Again, all I'm saying is don't charge to play online...why is that such bad thing to ask for? Again, I figured it would boil down to "well...I give them money...and they said they'd let me play online...and I can...so, yeah, I guess..."

Sony's online networked is bottlenecked pretty god damned hard. Games take me 2-5 times as long to download on that service compared to XBL.@nintendoeats said:

@GrandHarrier said:

Everything about Xbox Live is better than the alternatives from the other consoles; For the sake of being practical, this means PS3 since the Wii is an absolute joke.

Not the PC.

I agree with most of this. Online play is usually P2P, so you are essentially paying for a matchmaking service and couple of other little odds and ends. I let my XBL expire last month.

I don't mind paying, but this is an unreasonable amount, especially considering there are more ads on the Xbox dashboard than on the competing consoles.

I wasn't including the PC Master Race, obviously. But when it comes to the Big Three, XBL has the best service. And because its such a good service, I don't mind paying for it. I mean, it's $60 dollars a year. That's nothing to me and I'm lower middle class. $5 a month doesn't break the bank. And if you are savvy enough to pick it up on deals (its not rare to see it for $40 dollars on sale) its even cheaper.
#26 Posted by mfpantst (2574 posts) -
@LunarAura: i am voting with my wallet by not providing Sony money and by paying microsoft to play online games on the xbox.  Why?
 
@sammo21: I owned a Ps2 and bought into the online on consoles thing with the Ps2, bought the little ethernet thingy and it was horrible.  It never worked well no matter how good the internet I had was.  By contrast i  had friends in college who had an xbox and paid for the service and I played games with them all the time- the network (quality of service lag and such) was really great.  Way better than anything I experienced on the Ps2.  So when it came time for console I put my money where I had better experiences, and with people I trusted to deliver that experience.  So that's why I pay for a gold membership- because (on consoles) I want a service comparable to what i get on PC's and the PS2 "free" multiplayer was shit and the xbox paid multiplayer was good.  So maybe sony does a better job now, but fuck if I care.  Something worth doing is worth doing right.
#28 Edited by haggis (1677 posts) -
@CrazyChris said:

@rebgav said:

To date, Xbox Live has provided me with consistent high-quality services while continuing to roll out new features. I have no problem with paying for that. Given the success of Xbox Live subs the real question is why other platforms don't charge for their services.

This guy pretty much stole my comment.

And me as well. I had Gold for a long time, used Netflix, etc., but didn't play enough online to really justify it. Then I got bored with Netflix and dumped Gold for Silver. I still get access to game demos, videos, etc. on it and I don't pay a dime. The service rarely goes down except for scheduled maintenance, and they've been adding new features consistently over the last five years. I honestly have no idea why people would complain about it. And for those paying for Gold ... have you seen the insane deals they're offering? Three months for $3.33, one month for $1. Even when I was paying for Gold I always watched for special deals. I never paid full price for it. Given what is offered in the Gold pack, it's definitely worth it if you're going to use Hulu and Netflix, and mostly worth it even if you're just going to play online.
 
@sammo21 said:

@babblinmule: The only real difference that matters is party chat and that's it. The comments about a slow service are trolls as I use both XBL and PSN reguarly, almost every day. The same thing goes for security, those are either 1) trolls or 2) people who are uneducated on the topic.

Given what just happened to PSN, saying that people are trolls for complaining about security comes off as being a bit trollish itself. The hack happened. It is an issue. You may not want to admit that it's an issue, but clearly quite a few people disagree with you. Having PSN down for so long was a serious pain in the ass. There has been no similar breakdown on Xbox Live. That isn't to say that one couldn't happen, but the simple fact is that it hasn't. And until it does, it counts as a point against PSN.
#29 Posted by Shuborno (935 posts) -

I don't like paying for it.

What we get out of paying for it is the best service of its kind. At least they invest the money back in to the service.

I'm not talking about Netflix, ESPN, etc. They constantly iterate and improve on the core service (party systems, improved voice chats, smart cross-game functionality, etc.) and they probably would not do it as quickly without the revenue from Gold subs to supplement that R&D.

#30 Posted by GrandHarrier (180 posts) -
@Seraphx2 said:
@mfpantst: I bet if someone had wanted to go after Xbox Live they could have brought that down too.  It just so happens, hackers were upset with Sony, so they attack it.  
 
@Matll
: uhh, that's exactly the point.  so it's even more stupid for you to have to pay out money, just to play online?  how can you even begin to justify that when most other services let you do this for free?  you know why MS does it?  because they can and everyone just sits down and takes it.  How come, originally, they were charging 100$ for a friggin WiFi card and still waaayyy overprice HDDs? (for 100$ you can get 2TB HDDs..so because MS's has a special connector and case around it, you get charged a hefty premium?)  Because it's MS and they can.  That's why I never bought an Xbox; I wasn't going to support such ridiculous stupidity.  The only reason I'm getting one now is because it's free (I'm the friend sammo mentioned).  I always said the only way I would ever own an Xbox or Wii is if I got one for free.
I 'd suggest you sell it, then, personally. Think of it as free money. Should be able to get a decent return on it, if it is unused.
#31 Posted by nintendoeats (5975 posts) -

@GrandHarrier said:

I wasn't including the PC Master Race, obviously.

Hey, uncalled for :/

#32 Posted by TekZero (2638 posts) -

I found this great way to pay for Xbox Live on the cheap.  Let your account expire (you'll need to call them and turn off auto-renewal).  When I did this, they started throwing deals and specials at me to come back to Xbox live.  There was one that offered me free 800 microsoft points for rejoining.  The one that finally got me was the 2 months for $2.  
 
So after my two months are done, I'll just wait for the next deal. 

#33 Posted by GrandHarrier (180 posts) -
@nintendoeats said:

@GrandHarrier said:

I wasn't including the PC Master Race, obviously.

Hey, uncalled for :/

I didn't mean it disparagingly. For tech savvy individuals with a modest budget you are almost always going to have a better experience on the PC when it comes to basic functionality versus cost. This is a given. So I was just focusing on the console companies.
#34 Posted by Anund (849 posts) -

Because of this I will never buy a game I want to play online on the 360: I play online on my PS3, for free and it works great even without the hallowed "party chat" thing the xbox boys keep raving about. Who gives a rat's ass? I had gold for a month to play L4D with some friends. I didn't find it any easier to join a game on the 360. In fact, the mic kept screwing around and not working until I finally gave up and played without being able to talk. Then suddenly, 15 mins in, it suddenly started working for no reason. Whatever. And I'm not even going to go into the hassle I had to go through to cancel my Gold membership.

Microsoft is laughing all the way to the bank thanks to all the people who are willingly paying for, and even defending the fact that they have to pay for, something which should, without question, be free: Playing your games online. The PSN+ model is much better: you pay for bonus content and improvements which are not necessary to enjoy the games you have already paid for. However, blocking off a whole section of the game you bought for no good reason other than greed, that is not ok in my book.

The sad part is, because the unshakable loyalty of the 360 players, I'm betting next generation we will be paying for online play on all services. Indeed, why shouldn't Sony charge for online play if people are stupid enough to pay for it? I've even seen people laughing at how stupid Sony is for not charging for online play. It's baffling.

#35 Posted by mfpantst (2574 posts) -
@Seraphx2: fair enough- but that doesn't disprove the opposite.  Both possiblities are equally valid because we have no evidence.  so it is possible that the revenue from gold subscribers provides money to beef up security, and it is also possible that it does not.  I say it does, you say it doesn't, yet neither of us can prove anything.  Except I can without a doubt say that gold subscribers are a revenue source that Sony does not have a corrolary to when it works out it's PSN budget.
#36 Posted by MacEG (249 posts) -
@nintendoeats said:

Not the PC.

I agree with most of this. Online play is usually P2P, so you are essentially paying for a matchmaking service and couple of other little odds and ends. I let my XBL expire last month.

I don't mind paying, but this is an unreasonable amount, especially considering there are more ads on the Xbox dashboard than on the competing consoles.

PC is great but more money to front (to buy a PC).
 
The ads are really annoying but I don't mind dropping 5 bucks a month for something reliable that works. I've spent 60 bucks a lot faster in worse ways.  (Dark Sector.....)
 
Also, their's something about the Live community that I like (Minus getting cussed out by 5 year olds). I can't say anything about the PSN community as I don't have a PS3 but the PC community seems a lot more fractured. If you're not in a game with people, you're not with people (PC). XBL you can be watching something and socializing while other people are off doing their own thing. Then once you have a team going you can play a game.
 
I dunno. Just my experience.
#37 Posted by EndrzGame (323 posts) -

When a developer/publisher puts something out on XBox Live, Mircosoft handles everything. The match making, stats and leader boards, maintenance and what not. Microsoft says "Bring your game here and we'll handle everything", unless you're EA. When EA announced that they would be supporting Live back on the original XBox it was a pretty big deal and helped cement Live's legitimacy as a viable service. On other services/platforms the publishers have to either maintain it themselves or hire out someone to do it for them.  I read this somewhere years ago, but that's pretty much why Live isn't free. 
Also, I haven't payed full price for Live for the past 3 years. Amazon.com and even brick and mortar stores always have sales on 12months gold cards. The last one I ordered from Amazon was only $35.

#38 Edited by Toms115 (2314 posts) -

there's no real reason that matters to the consumer other than microsoft like money. sucks that you have to pay but you can always buy codes off of ebay or something so microsoft don't get your money. STICK IT TO DA MAN.

#39 Edited by Seraphx2 (6 posts) -
@rebgav: Uhh, no, because my choice is driven by the fact that I feel I shouldn't have to be charged for a simple service that MS doesn't even own.  They host no dedicated servers for these games.  So it's like me standing in front of McDonald's and charging people a dollar to go through the door.
#40 Posted by Sammo21 (3021 posts) -

Again, the extra $10 a title we pay for current gen games was supposed to go to things like this, but apparently not. Valve adds plenty of features to Steam without charging me for the service...same for their games too...they charge me for optional things not core features and they still get plenty of revenue for R&D. PSN is no clunkier to navigate than the marketplace.

#41 Posted by Seraphx2 (6 posts) -
@GrandHarrier: That thought has crossed my mind :p  lol
#42 Posted by SomeJerk (2968 posts) -

You're not paying for dedicated servers, you're paying for MS to buy exclusive rights to DLC, which is clearly what people want in between rounds of road-shouldered football player cover-based shooters

#44 Posted by animathias (1076 posts) -

I justify my subscription by how radically Microsoft continues to overhaul the dashboard, and in my opinion (I know it's relative) makes it better with each iteration. Years ago, I wasn't able to install games to the harddrive, join a party with a group of people playing different games, or download full retail games (Please don't complain about the MSRP, those games cost just as much new at GameStop in most cases.) Now I can. Whether or not Xbox Live subscriptions paid for those updates to happen is speculation, but that money is going somewhere, and with any hope it's going to make the service better for customers. Whether or not that's where the money is going, it's undeniable that the service has gotten better for subscribers, so I'm perfectly happy being a Gold member.

In closing, yeah $60 is a lot - so look for a deal, you'll find one. In any case, $60 a year is a joke to complain about. I spent $65 on Dragon Age 2 and was severely disappointed, and that's just the tip of the iceberg of poor games I've bought at full retail price, some of them in multiples a year.

#45 Posted by GrandHarrier (180 posts) -
@hckling said:

Because of this I will never buy a game I want to play online on the 360: I play online on my PS3, for free and it works great even without the hallowed "party chat" thing the xbox boys keep raving about. Who gives a rat's ass? I had gold for a month to play L4D with some friends. I didn't find it any easier to join a game on the 360. In fact, the mic kept screwing around and not working until I finally gave up and played without being able to talk. Then suddenly, 15 mins in, it suddenly started working for no reason. Whatever. And I'm not even going to go into the hassle I had to go through to cancel my Gold membership.

Microsoft is laughing all the way to the bank thanks to all the people who are willingly paying for, and even defending the fact that they have to pay for, something which should, without question, be free: Playing your games online. The PSN+ model is much better: you pay for bonus content and improvements which are not necessary to enjoy the games you have already paid for. However, blocking off a whole section of the game you bought for no good reason other than greed, that is not ok in my book.

The sad part is, because the unshakable loyalty of the 360 players, I'm betting next generation we will be paying for online play on all services. Indeed, why shouldn't Sony charge for online play if people are stupid enough to pay for it? I've even seen people laughing at how stupid Sony is for not charging for online play. It's baffling.

You realize that "Playstation Plus" is Sony admitting, "Fuck, we should be charging for this..." And they would be making you pay if they could. But they are locked by the promise they put on those console boxes. That is why Plus is such a clusterfuck of garbage that is desperately trying to attract you.
#46 Posted by TEHMAXXORZ (1199 posts) -

It's gone up ten dollars? Here in the U.K. it's dirt cheap for 3 months, it's almost as if it's going down here.

#47 Posted by CookieMonster (2408 posts) -

I can't complain. I got a free subscription effectively this year because they automatically charged the credit card attached to my account and the card was out of date so no money was taken. 

#48 Posted by haggis (1677 posts) -
@rebgav said:

@hckling said:

something which should, without question, be free: Playing your games online.

Why should it be free? Seems like a valid question to ask. Every step of the process, from log-in to log-out, is costing somebody money, who should be absorbing that cost for you? The big publishers do take care of some of their own matchmaking and that cost is presumably coming from the retail sale of the game. Who should pay for you to be able to play online if the publisher or developer can't provide for you? Should they strip online components out of their game? That would solve the problem to some extent.

I agree. I get tired of the assertion that this service ought to be free. It's actually a fairly substantial cost to Microsoft to host Xbox Live. If Sony wants to eat the cost on the service that's fine, but I'd take issue with this "without question" business. Passing the cost onto gamers who will actually use the online service seems quite fair to me. If playing online is so important to you, paying shouldn't be an issue, especially given how inexpensive the service is.
#49 Posted by MysteriousBob (6273 posts) -
@rebgav said:

To date, Xbox Live has provided me with consistent high-quality services while continuing to roll out new features. I have no problem with paying for that. Given the success of Xbox Live subs the real question is why other platforms don't charge for their services.

This. 
 
PSN is just a joke in comparison.
#50 Edited by Sammo21 (3021 posts) -

@GrandHarrier: I guess Stacking is included in that "cluster fuck" of garbage you speak of...or Sam and Max...or Wipeout HD.

@MysteriousBob: Party chat is the only real difference between the services.

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