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Monthly Archives: June 2013

Xbox One, Nintendo 3DS, Phil Fish, DRM: Speed Run

Microsoft did a 180 on its used games and DRM policies for the Xbox One, and companies like GameStop and GameFly are welcoming the news. The newest firmware update for the Nintendo 3DS adds the ability to create backup saves on an SD card. We got a chance to catch up with Fez creator Phil Fish, and our latest opinion piece talks about what all this DRM-hubub means for Sony, Microsoft and gamers.

Hey Polynauts, have you checked out Nookslist?

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Xbox One requires launch-day patch ‘not tied directly’ to offline functionality

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Xbox One users will need to download a launch-day patch before they can begin using the console, and the update is “not tied directly to enabling offline functionality,” a Microsoft representative told Polygon today.

“A day one system update for Xbox One has always been planned to accommodate the differences between hardware and software manufacturing schedules. This update is not tied directly to enabling offline functionality of Xbox One, but is required for the system to function both online and offline,” said the spokesperson.

Microsoft announced yesterday a near-complete reversal of its previously stated policies regarding always-online connectivity and game licensing for Xbox One. Under the company’s new policy, the console will not need to check in with Xbox Live after its initial setup process, and users’ ability to play secondhand games is identical to what it is on Xbox 360. Microsoft also nixed the ability to play disc-based games without keeping the disc in the console, and to share a game library with up to 10 family members.

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NMA TV takes on Microsoft’s Xbox One-80

Yesterday, Microsoft backpedaled (hard) on the Xbox One’s always-online and game sharing policies. You could (and should!) read all about it right here. For a more visual take on the entire saga, watch NMA’s scatalogical recap.

JoystiqNMA TV takes on Microsoft’s Xbox One-80 originally appeared on Joystiq on Thu, 20 Jun 2013 12:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Xbox One policy reversal a "win/win" for consumers, says GameFly

Rental company executive says original proposal would have been “detrimental” to various business systems.

 

Microsoft’s decision to reverse its Xbox One used game policy is a “win/win” for consumers, GameFly cofounder Sean Spector told Joystiq in a new interview.

“I always felt good about the future of GameFly, but I feel better today,” Spector said. “Today is a win/win for consumers, as well as GameFly. I think choice is always important and now consumers have more choice. And I give [Microsoft] credit for listening to their consumers.”

Spector went on to say that Microsoft’s previous plan “would have been detrimental to lots of people’s [business] systems” and not just GameFly’s.

Microsoft’s former policy stood to negatively impact GameFly’s business, as it stated that Xbox One games could only be shared once, and only to someone a player has been friends with on Xbox Live for 30 days.

GameFly is not the only company to applaud Microsoft’s policy reversal. GameStop, which makes a significant portion of its revenue from secondhand sales, said the move was “great news” for gamers.

GameStop shares have since surged.

Read and Post Comments | Get the full article at GameSpot


Xbox One policy reversal a “win/win” for consumers, says GameFly” was posted by Eddie Makuch on Thu, 20 Jun 2013 08:48:29 -0700

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Microsoft’s Xbox One policy reversal is ‘a win/win for consumers,’ says GameFly exec

Xbox-one-angle-photo_1280

Microsoft’s sudden reversal of its onerous Xbox One DRM policies yesterday is “a win/win for consumers,” said GameFly co-founder Sean Spector in an interview with Joystiq.

Yesterday afternoon, Microsoft announced an about-face on its policies regarding always-online connectivity and game licensing on Xbox One. Earlier this month, the company said that all Xbox One games would have had to check in with Xbox Live every 24 hours to ensure authentication. In addition, third-party publishers would have had the option to restrict users’ ability to resell or gift disc-based Xbox One games, or disallow the practice altogether.

Loaning or renting of Xbox One games would not have been possible, either, which would have been a major problem for GameFly, a long-running service that lets users rent games by mail. Now, none of those policies will be in place; instead, the Xbox One will resemble the Xbox 360 in those respects, except that games will now be region-free.

“I think the original proposal would have been detrimental to lots of people’s [business] systems. Not just GameFly. And, most importantly, gamers,” said Spector, who also serves as the company’s senior vice president of business development and content.

“Today is a win/win for consumers, as well as GameFly,” he added.

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GameStop shares surge on Xbox One news

Retailer’s stock value up more than 5 percent in early trading after Microsoft’s policy reversal for Xbox One.

 

GameStop shares surged today after Microsoft announced a new Xbox One policy that lifts all limitations on used games for the platform.

At press time, GameStop shares are up 5.32 percent (+2.39) to $40.57.

Microsoft’s new terms state players are free to trade-in, lend, resell, gift, and rent disc-based games in the same way that they can today on Xbox 360.

The new policy is a boon for GameStop, which makes a significant portion of its revenue from secondhand sales.

GameStop praised Microsoft’s policy reversal yesterday, saying the move was “great news” for gamers and is a testament to Microsoft’s understanding of importance of used game market.

Microsoft’s former policy was less-than-encouraging for GameStop, stating that Xbox One games could only be shared once, and only to someone a player has been friends with on Xbox Live for 30 days.

In addition, whether or not secondhand Xbox One games would be allowed at all was in the hands of individual publishers like Activision or Electronic Arts.

Read and Post Comments | Get the full article at GameSpot


GameStop shares surge on Xbox One news” was posted by Eddie Makuch on Thu, 20 Jun 2013 07:41:54 -0700

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Microsoft ditching Xbox One family sharing plan

“We won’t be delivering that,” Xbox boss Marc Whitten says after yesterday’s policy reversal.

 

Microsoft’s previously announced Xbox One family sharing plan is no longer in the works, chief product officer Marc Whitten told sister site CNET in a new interview.

“We won’t be delivering that,” Whitten said.

The plan was short-lived, having been announced just two weeks ago on June 6. It was to allow players to share their games library with up to 10 family members on any Xbox One.

Xbox boss Don Mattrick alluded to the program’s cancellation yesterday during his blog post concerning the Xbox One policy reversal.

“These changes will impact some of the scenarios we previously announced for Xbox One. The sharing of games will work as it does today, you will simply share the disc,” Mattrick said. “Downloaded titles cannot be shared or resold. Also, similar to today, playing disc based games will require that the disc be in the tray.”

For more on the Xbox One’s new policies, check out GameSpot’s full report on the changes.

Read and Post Comments | Get the full article at GameSpot


Microsoft ditching Xbox One family sharing plan” was posted by Eddie Makuch on Thu, 20 Jun 2013 06:21:03 -0700

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Analyst: Xbox One policy reversal a "good first step"

Sterne Agee analyst says revised strategy “more consumer-friendly,” but Microsoft still needs to focus on pricing messaging.

 

Microsoft’s revised Xbox One policy is a “good first step,” but the company must now focus on communicating to consumers why they should pay $500 for the system instead of $400 for a PlayStation 4, according to Sterne Agee analyst Arvind Bhatia.

“Microsoft’s revised Xbox One strategy is more consumer-friendly and bodes well for potential sales of the console over time,” Bhatia said in a note to investors today regarding the impact the news has on retailer GameStop.

“The elimination of all restrictions related to DRM and trade-ins, etc., strengthens GameStop’s positioning in the space and eliminates risk to used games,” he added. “Still, we believe Microsoft’s messaging on Xbox One pricing ($499) needs to improve relative to Sony’s PS4, which is priced at $399.”

GameStop yesterday applauded Microsoft’s policy reversal, saying the move was “great news” for gamers and is a testament to Microsoft’s understanding of the importance of the used-game market.

Microsoft may be pacing ahead of the PS4 on Amazon’s best-seller charts, but Bhatia believes the company must now focus on pricing messaging to win over consumers who may be attracted to the PS4’s lower price point.

Bhatia pointed out that the primary difference between the Xbox One and PS4 is that Microsoft’s system comes bundled with a Kinect camera, while Sony faithful will need to pay $60 to buy a PlayStation Eye peripheral. Communicating to gamers why the Kinect will add value to the system will be the difference-maker, Bhatia said.

“The primary difference is the Xbox One comes with a Kinect camera/controller bundled while PS4 does not,” Bhatia said. “We believe Microsoft wants to bundle Kinect so developers can take advantage of its features without worrying if the end-user will have the Kinect controller or not. As such, the messaging likely needs to focus on the value and potentially differentiated game play provided by Xbox One.”

Read and Post Comments | Get the full article at GameSpot


Analyst: Xbox One policy reversal a “good first step”” was posted by Eddie Makuch on Thu, 20 Jun 2013 05:53:42 -0700

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Xbox One passes PS4 on Amazon chart

Microsoft’s next-gen console grabs the lead back after policy reversal announcement.

 

The Xbox One has overtaken the PlayStation 4 on Amazon’s video game best-seller chart, one day after Microsoft announced a dramatic policy reversal.

The Xbox One was tracking ahead of the PS4 earlier this month, MCV points out, though it fell behind after Sony’s E3 announcements of pricing ($400) and policies (plays used game, won’t require Internet connection).

Notably, there is only one Xbox One SKU on the Amazon best-seller chart–the Day One Edition. Meanwhile, five separate PS4 bundles grace the preorder chart.

Microsoft yesterday announced new policies that put the Xbox One more on par with the PS4.

The new terms state players are free to trade in, lend, resell, gift, and rent disc-based games in the same way that they can today on the Xbox 360. In addition, Microsoft has done away with 24-hour Internet “check-ins” and lifted the Xbox One region lock.

Though Microsoft has backtracked on some of its policies, the company has no plans to revisit the platform’s $500 price point.

Read and Post Comments | Get the full article at GameSpot


Xbox One passes PS4 on Amazon chart” was posted by Eddie Makuch on Thu, 20 Jun 2013 05:27:43 -0700

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Microsoft sticking with $500 price point for Xbox One

Company not revisiting price point or Kinect requirement for next-gen console in wake of recent policy changes.

 

Microsoft’s recent dramatic Xbox One policy reversal does not include the company revisiting the system’s $500 price point, chief product officer Marc Whitten told sister site CNET.

He explained that Microsoft has “no plans” to lower the entry price, despite rival Sony launching the PlayStation 4 for $400.

“We are really, really excited about the value we’re going to deliver on day one,” Whitten said.

Whitten also explained that Microsoft has no plans to drop the Kinect requirement for the Xbox One or change its default setting from “on” to “off.”

“It’s part of the Xbox One architecture,” Whitten said.

Responding to user concerns regarding privacy, Microsoft said earlier this month that players will be able to customize all Kinect settings and made clear that idle living room chatter is not recorded or uploaded.

Every Xbox One includes a Kinect 2.0 camera, whereas PS4 gamers will need to pay $60 to purchase a PlayStation Eye.

Under the terms of Microsoft’s new Xbox One policies, players are free to trade in, lend, resell, gift, and rent disc-based games in the same way that they can today on the Xbox 360. In addition, Microsoft has done away with 24-hour Internet “check-ins” and lifted the Xbox One region lock.

Read and Post Comments | Get the full article at GameSpot


Microsoft sticking with $500 price point for Xbox One” was posted by Eddie Makuch on Thu, 20 Jun 2013 04:16:08 -0700

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