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The Xbox One isn’t all that bad (editorial)

Xbox One vs. PlayStation 4

With the recent unveiling of both Xbox One and PlayStation 4, gamers across the world have shared their thoughts on both consoles and it appears Sony have the upper hand. Amazon did a recent poll which ended with the PS4 winning with 95% of the vote. Right now, the console war isn’t looking good for Microsoft, and I can’t help but wonder why?

DRM

Yes, the Xbox One enforces a DRM policy, but it’s not as bad as people are making it out to be. Developers at Xbox have enforced this new DRM technology because they want to help gamers in the future. With DRM on Xbox One, games can eventually become cheaper because games aren’t being pirated. You can share games with friends on Xbox One, and in a matter of fact its a lot better than what the PS4 is offering.

Picture this scenario: I just bought Halo 5 from a game store, I bring it home, turn on my Xbox One and insert the disk. Xbox One registers this game to my account, and launches the game while installing it to my hard drive. Now, once the game has finished installing onto my hard drive, the Xbox One will no longer require the disk, ever. I can take the disk out the Xbox, put it back in its case and put it in the attic. The Xbox One will launch Halo 5 directly from my hard drive as it has been registered to my account.

Now imagine I’m going to visit a friend of mine in the US. I’m currently based in the UK, so I take a flight over to the US to visit my friend. He has an Xbox One also, and wants to check out Halo 5. I haven’t bought my Xbox One or Halo game, so what am I going to do? Well, with Xbox One, all I need to do it login to my Microsoft ID, and all my games will be available on my friends Xbox One for use, and for free.

With the PS4, you can’t do that. Inserting a game you bought from the store on PS4 will just allow you to play it like normal, it won’t register to your account or install to the hard drive, which means you can’t login to your account on a friends PS4 and play the game without the disk. Also, Developers can implement DRM technologies into their games if ‘they’ want to. And trust me, they will.

Pricing

The PS4 is $399. The Xbox One is $499. There is a $100 difference between both consoles, which I’ll admit, is a big difference, but Microsoft aren’t stealing from you. If you buy a PS4, in the box you’ll get a PlayStation 4 console, wires and either 1 or 2 controllers. With the Xbox One, you get an Xbox One console, a Kinect sensor and either 1 or 2 controllers. You get more in the box with Xbox One, which explains why it’s $100 more than the PS4.

Sure, if I include the price of the PS4 eye sensor, the PlayStation 4’s total cost is around $450, which means there’s still a $50 gap between PS4 and Xbox One. This is because the technology used in the new Kinect sensor is more advanced and expensive. Look at it like this: Xbox One + Controller = $399, Kinect Sensor = $100.

Online Requirements

The Xbox One will require the user to be connected to the internet once every 24 hours. If you are not connected every 24 hours, you won’t be able to play any games, even if it is just singleplayer. There’s a good reason for this though, and it should all benefit us in the future. Games will eventually become cheaper if less people pirate, and the only way to stop people from pirating is by having these Online Requirements.

In the future, the games you buy could be cheaper because nobody is pirating them, therefore the developers can price their games lower without having to lose out on money. It all benefits the gamer in the long run, why can’t people see that?

Also, it is possible to tether your phones internet connection to the Xbox One, which will allow the console to authenticate another 24 hours of offline playtime. There’s many ways around this problem. Although I will admit, it ‘is’ a problem. Microsoft need to find a way to authenticate the game without an internet connection, maybe Phone Activations like on Windows?

The Whole Story

Microsoft have done a terrible job at getting this information out to the public. The Xbox team seem to have crumbled at the pressure from Sony and the press. Major Nelson was seen in an interview during E3 getting quite annoyed at an interviewer who was asking some very important question about DRM. At one point, Major Nelson actually takes the microphone away from the interview to interupt the question he was asking.

An anonymous Xbox Developer took to PasteBin to explain the situation as to why Microsoft was implementing DRM features and other features which the public aren’t happy with. The Developer even says that if you’re just going to play games, get a PS4, as the Xbox One is intended to be used as an all in ‘one’ entertainment system. Games, TV, Entertainment.

It doesn’t matter how many facts you throw in someone’s face, once they’ve made up their minds they won’t change it. Same goes for those who have decided to purchase a PS4 because of the DRM rumours.

I can assure you that the Xbox One isn’t as bad as it was originally thought to be, and while it may look grim in todays world, in the future it will be the console to choose as it does so much more and will do it for so much less.

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