You’ve probably heard by now about the crazy complicated and restrictive path Microsoft has chosen to travel with their next video game console, the Xbox One.
After Sony took the stage and had the crowd cheering wildly over their much less restrictive PlayStation 4, many thought it would be in Microsoft’s best interest to realize what was happening, and make changes where necessary. But it does not look like they’re prepared to do such things. The company is firmly confident that their system is the future, and that people simply do not realize it yet. And they may be right—only time will tell on that—but looking at it as we the gamers are, it’s pretty mind boggling to see unfold.
Lately people have been asking Microsoft representatives what exactly all of those people who have no internet connection whatsoever are supposed to do if they want to play Xbox One games. The company’s answer? Well…it’s not going to go over well.
Micrososft Interactive Entertainment Business President Don Mattrick spoke about the new console and their “future proof” vision, and when it came to those without any internet connection available to them, Mattrick said “fortunately we have a product for people who aren’t able to get some form of connectivity, it’s called Xbox 360.”
Mattrick spoke a little more on the topic after that as well, and you can check out the full interview courtesy of Game Trailers. The 360 comments begin around 1:40 in.
That’s not the end of it, though. Microsoft Games Studio VP Phil Spencer also spoke on the topic to Destructoid.
Spencer wasn’t as blunt, using a cell phone analogy to try and make sense of it all:
“I mean the analogy, and I don’t know if it’s a great analogy… let’s say I live in an area that doesn’t have cell service. I wouldn’t go buy a cell phone. Now, I might roam in different areas where my cellphone becomes active.
The 360 ecosystem is a great ecosystem for somebody that’s in a purely disconnected state for long periods of time. We have built a natively connected device with Xbox One and we think the experiences are moving in that direction.”
Spencer thinks because everything else is going digital and because things like your phone or iPad are always connected, video games need to as well.
“I think the critical thing that people should get their head around is your social and gaming identity, and the content that is associated with your identity, and where your identity roams your content roams with you. It’s how you expect so much of your content to run today.
You want your library to move with you, you want your friends list to move with you. We think the investment in live that we’ve made over the last 8 years has been really important to growing that capability, and when you think about your gaming library associated with your identity is an incredibly important thing. We’re going through that transition right now and gamers will come along.
Any other device that you own, your library is digital. Frankly, if you’re on the PC, or a Steam customer, or an App Store customer on iOS devices — this is how you think about your library of content.”
The thing with this is not everyone feels this way, and that’s the problem. Microsoft has it in their heads that their “vision” is the only way, and it doesn’t matter what anyone else thinks. Again, they may be right when it’s all said and done; you can’t deny that the world IS digital now. BUT, that does not mean you take away your customer’s ability to choose. Develop the system to be as digitally ready as it can be, but also leave a little door open that allows those who aren’t ready to go full digital or can’t afford things like an internet connection the ability to still enjoy these exciting new games of the future.
It’s the separation from and ignoring of a large group of your fans and customers, as well as the lack of overall control people who spend hundreds of dollars to “own” this sophisticated piece of machinery will actually have that has everyone so pissed off at the moment.
Thankfully most of the games that are on the way are still going to be released on the 360 as well, but it will get to a point where people will be missing out on great new games because they’re exclusive to an Xbox One system those people cannot use, and that’s where things really become an issue.
Do you think Microsoft has a good idea of what the future of gaming will be and that everyone else will eventually realize they’re right, or are they completely off course at this point?
[Source: via Games Radar]