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Quick fire poll: will the PS5/XB2 have a disc drive?

Will the drive thrive?  

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Of course, a factor linked to this is whether or not the next generation are going to be sold like Mobile Phones - i.e. monthly subscriptions.

 

I think Microsoft have already dipped a toe in the water but I can definitely see an official option next time round to purchase a console at X per month which includes things like Xbox Live, Gamepass.  It is this type of machine which might forgo the disc drive as part of the subscription tie in. 

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The recent launch of the Epic Gamestore  and Valves changes to their revenue split arrangement will put Microsoft in particular under pressure to follow suit and move away from the 70/30 split when it comes to digitally distributed games (they've already announced and failed to deliver on a new revenue split arrangement for non-gaming apps on the Windows 10 store) so selling games digitally will become more and more attractive as times goes on and I think we'll hit a point in the next few years where the increased value to publishers of digitally distributed games will put them in a position where they are willing to give up a percentage of total game sales and go for exclusively digital distribution. 

 

So in short I think the PS5 and next Xbox will move to exclusively digital distribution. 

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53 minutes ago, bear said:

So in short I think the PS5 and next Xbox will move to exclusively digital distribution. 

 

And so you think that boiled frog syndrome means that it'll end differently than it did for Microsoft back in 2013?

 

They'll have a disc drive, too large a segment of the customer base isn't ready to give up the freedom that brings or don't have the network connectivity to go online only, just like they weren't ready in 2013.

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Sony and the Japanese market are all about the discs, so PS5 definitely will.

 

Having said that it feels so old fashioned to put a disc in these days. Even putting in a game disc makes me feel like Sisyphus.

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2 hours ago, mushashi said:

 

And so you think that boiled frog syndrome means that it'll end differently than it did for Microsoft back in 2013?

 

They'll have a disc drive, too large a segment of the customer base isn't ready to give up the freedom that brings or don't have the network connectivity to go online only, just like they weren't ready in 2013.

I think the fundamental flaw in their strategy last time around was that they spent precisely zero hours getting the market ready for the shift the Xboxone represented.  If they had invested in studios when they were on top of the market or just waited to snap up the remains of publishers that went bust or were taken over (Midway, Eidos, THQ, Tecmo, Bizarre Creations etc.) they would have had a formidable lineup of studios and exclusive games going into this generation. On top of that the experience of buying full games digitally on Xbox360 was miserable until very late in its lifecycle with pathetic sales so anyone who owned a 360 would be understandably cautious about the future MS were proposing. Kinect is its own messed up waste of interesting technology.

 

Starting with the strongly rumoured discless Xboxone S due this spring Microsoft have basically got two years to finally convince console owners that a digital only future isn't all bad. 

Of course I think the big sweetener will be the removal of Gold as a requirement to play online if you subscribe to Gamepass/Xcloud on an Xboxone 2. 

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2 hours ago, womblingfree said:

Having said that it feels so old fashioned to put a disc in these days. Even putting in a game disc makes me feel like Sisyphus.

 

Have you got that issue where the drive keeps ejecting?

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Seeing as MS seemingly spent half this gen pimping BC, I doubt they would throw all that away by releasing a console without a disc tray. Even MS aren't that stupid

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4 minutes ago, Down by Law said:

Seeing as MS seemingly spent half this gen pimping BC, I doubt they would throw all that away by releasing a console without a disc tray. Even MS aren't that stupid

According to Brad Sams, who has a good record of breaking Microsoft news, they are working on a scheme where you can trade in discs in exchange for a download code to go alongside the launch of a discless Xboxone this spring. 

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1 hour ago, Down by Law said:

Seeing as MS seemingly spent half this gen pimping BC, I doubt they would throw all that away by releasing a console without a disc tray. Even MS aren't that stupid

 

Is a lot of BC business using old discs? I imagine the profit lies on encouraging people to repurchase old BC games digitally. 

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20 hours ago, bear said:

I think the fundamental flaw in their strategy last time around was that they spent precisely zero hours getting the market ready for the shift the Xboxone represented.  If they had invested in studios when they were on top of the market or just waited to snap up the remains of publishers that went bust or were taken over (Midway, Eidos, THQ, Tecmo, Bizarre Creations etc.) they would have had a formidable lineup of studios and exclusive games going into this generation. On top of that the experience of buying full games digitally on Xbox360 was miserable until very late in its lifecycle with pathetic sales so anyone who owned a 360 would be understandably cautious about the future MS were proposing. Kinect is its own messed up waste of interesting technology.

 

Starting with the strongly rumoured discless Xboxone S due this spring Microsoft have basically got two years to finally convince console owners that a digital only future isn't all bad. 

Of course I think the big sweetener will be the removal of Gold as a requirement to play online if you subscribe to Gamepass/Xcloud on an Xboxone 2. 

 

What about the small fact this completely kills resale and any thought of ownership control by the customer? As their 2013 plans involved a mooted resale scheme, while in the present digital present, hahahahahaha. I don't think the segment of the customer base that cares about that has been convinced by the current digital setup.

 

The proposed 2013 model was a better variant of what was already happening with PC, where you bought a disc and it was forever tied to your online account and became a coaster, where at least Microsoft were offering to allow you to continue to enjoy some of the options you had with physical discs on consoles in the past and still at present, which a digital download-only console will not allow. No resale and no lending of games to friends, no Gamefly/Redbox or their equivalents here either.

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15 minutes ago, mushashi said:

 

What about the small fact this completely kills resale and any thought of ownership control by the customer? As their 2013 plans involved a mooted resale scheme, while in the present digital present, hahahahahaha. I don't think the segment of the customer base that cares about that has been convinced by the current digital setup.

 

The proposed 2013 model was a better variant of what was already happening with PC, where you bought a disc and it was forever tied to your online account and became a coaster, where at least Microsoft were offering to allow you to continue to enjoy some of the options you had with physical discs on consoles in the past and still at present, which a digital download-only console will not allow. No resale and no lending of games to friends, no Gamefly/Redbox or their equivalents here either.

 

I see your point and physical will not disappear overnight. But I think for the next generation coming through, who are use to Gamepass, App purchases, Netflix etc. that the idea of owning something and being able to sell it will not come as naturally to them as it does to us.  That generation are already use to buying digitally without the hope of ever being able to sell on so will more easily adjust.  Discs will still be around for a long time but will get less and less important as time goes on. 

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Which is why I don't think the Next Gen is when it happens, too many people aren't ready for it and children are reliant on other people to pay for their addiction usually.

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On 04/01/2019 at 13:10, Meh said:

 

You comparison to Apple isn't the best. File sizes on their devices aren't exactly huge - and this makes it easier to stomach for countries with shit internet. The fact is, people don't want to sit and wait a thousand years for their games to download, and so at the moment it makes zero sense for these machines to have no disc drive - especially with the rising file size of games to over 100gb in some instances.

 

File sizes for PC games are massive, but people play on PC games all over the world.

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5 minutes ago, Broker said:

 

File sizes for PC games are massive, but people play on PC games all over the world.

 

They ain't all massive, though, and PC gamers who buy AAA tend to have a PC with a pretty big HDD and a healthy internet connection.

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Surely that's also true of console games though? Fortnite is the most popular game in the world, there's no disc based version and every person playing that has managed to download not just that but all its giant updates. Even with a disc on console you're still just installing whatever the disc has plus downloading the rest then tonnes of updates, over the lifetime of an AAA game the amount you install from the disc at the start is totally irrelevant in context of the amount of data a disc user has to download. Consoles also offer thousands of smaller digital games which don't require as much bandwidth. 

 

I think if every person playing fortnite, and destiny, and cod multiplayer, and FIFA ultimate team, and console overwatch, and rocket league has that data capacity its probably enough of the market that the remaining people won't be a significant factor in business decisions. The majority of games now require an internet connection to work, and most of the most popular and profitable games in the world wouldn't work for people so limited on their downloads that they required discs as an option.

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It is daft as some people don't have the internet bandwidth. Prefer Gamecube generation - pop in a disc and play it within 1-2 minutes.  Time for 4K Gamecube rather than current download and patch and installing crap. 

 

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5 hours ago, mushashi said:

 

What about the small fact this completely kills resale and any thought of ownership control by the customer? As their 2013 plans involved a mooted resale scheme, while in the present digital present, hahahahahaha. I don't think the segment of the customer base that cares about that has been convinced by the current digital setup.

 

How big is that segment of the market?  More importantly, how valuable is that segment of the market to publishers?

 

I'm not saying the end of physical media is great or even good for customers, I just think that the big players want a digital only future. If they don't kill it off at the launch of the PS5 and next Xbox then they'll have to wait another 5+ years for another chance. They won't wait that long. 

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At this point I'd prefer if everything was just digital. Its not like you can take a modern game home, stick in a disc and play it. Even single player games change substantially and more and more games have a broken or incomplete version on the disc anyway. The days of games working offline are gone.

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They probably will but I hope it's an optional extra and that I can pay a little less to get a unit without a disc drive.

 

Discs are the past (for me, at least!)

 

I'm sure it's not actually the case but I sometimes get the feeling that people that passionately defend disc based media are just trying to self-justify to themselves why they have shelves and shelves of plastic boxes and all the money they spent on collecting them.

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7 hours ago, Broker said:

Surely that's also true of console games though? Fortnite is the most popular game in the world, there's no disc based version and every person playing that has managed to download not just that but all its giant updates. Even with a disc on console you're still just installing whatever the disc has plus downloading the rest then tonnes of updates, over the lifetime of an AAA game the amount you install from the disc at the start is totally irrelevant in context of the amount of data a disc user has to download. Consoles also offer thousands of smaller digital games which don't require as much bandwidth. 

 

I think if every person playing fortnite, and destiny, and cod multiplayer, and FIFA ultimate team, and console overwatch, and rocket league has that data capacity its probably enough of the market that the remaining people won't be a significant factor in business decisions. The majority of games now require an internet connection to work, and most of the most popular and profitable games in the world wouldn't work for people so limited on their downloads that they required discs as an option.

 

You do counter my argument well there. Around 40-45% of gamers buy digitally - which is not an insignificant amount, certainly not - but it shows it's still a generation too early for everything to go digital. There's also the fact people like to have the convenience of a disc drive to play movies on. I haven't owned a blu-ray drive outside of consoles, ever, because... there's no point. Sure, they could make this optional - but, honestly, fuck add-ons.

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4 hours ago, Broker said:

At this point I'd prefer if everything was just digital. Its not like you can take a modern game home, stick in a disc and play it. Even single player games change substantially and more and more games have a broken or incomplete version on the disc anyway. The days of games working offline are gone.

 

This is mostly false. Most (single-player) games can be stuck in the drive and played. Activision are the only real culprits when it comes to this shit - like Tony Hawk's... whatever it was, and Spyro.

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8 hours ago, Broker said:

Surely that's also true of console games though? Fortnite is the most popular game in the world, there's no disc based version and every person playing that has managed to download not just that but all its giant updates. Even with a disc on console you're still just installing whatever the disc has plus downloading the rest then tonnes of updates, over the lifetime of an AAA game the amount you install from the disc at the start is totally irrelevant in context of the amount of data a disc user has to download. Consoles also offer thousands of smaller digital games which don't require as much bandwidth. 

 

I think if every person playing fortnite, and destiny, and cod multiplayer, and FIFA ultimate team, and console overwatch, and rocket league has that data capacity its probably enough of the market that the remaining people won't be a significant factor in business decisions. The majority of games now require an internet connection to work, and most of the most popular and profitable games in the world wouldn't work for people so limited on their downloads that they required discs as an option.

There is a disc version of fortnite. 

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4 hours ago, deerokus said:

There is a disc version of fortnite. 

 

Just save the world, the irrelevant version of the game that nobody plays.

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Would people's views change if there were two versions of the console, one disc less, and the disc less console was incentivised in some way.  Perhaps, retailing at a discount or if it includes a free year of Gamepass? I would imagine this would be the most popular route for a console manufacture to encourage widespread adoption of a disc less version of a console. 

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18 hours ago, mushashi said:

 

What about the small fact this completely kills resale and any thought of ownership control by the customer? As their 2013 plans involved a mooted resale scheme, while in the present digital present, hahahahahaha. I don't think the segment of the customer base that cares about that has been convinced by the current digital setup.

 

The proposed 2013 model was a better variant of what was already happening with PC, where you bought a disc and it was forever tied to your online account and became a coaster, where at least Microsoft were offering to allow you to continue to enjoy some of the options you had with physical discs on consoles in the past and still at present, which a digital download-only console will not allow. No resale and no lending of games to friends, no Gamefly/Redbox or their equivalents here either.

 

That's true actually. What are the chances of MS or Sony allowing you to transfer digital licenses for the purposes of gifting or selling on? It would be a good differentiator between the two platforms.

 

Do other digital platforms allow you to sell your license to other users?

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4 hours ago, Pob said:

 

That's true actually. What are the chances of MS or Sony allowing you to transfer digital licenses for the purposes of gifting or selling on? It would be a good differentiator between the two platforms.

 

Do other digital platforms allow you to sell your license to other users?

 

Nobody does this, not even GOG or the beneficent GabeN, the most consumer friendly of the current digital platform providers. There have been some mooted schemes, but they've all involved fuckall resale value/a cut back to the copyright holder for allowing you to do it.

 

Microsoft's original Xbox One plan did involve license transfer but only for physical discs so not even they were offering it for digital. Here's the original proposal direct from Microsoft:

 

Quote

 

Buy the way you want—disc or digital—on the same day: You’ll be able to buy disc-based games at traditional retailers or online through Xbox Live, on day of release. Discs will continue to be a great way to install your games quickly.

 

Access your entire games library from any Xbox One—no discs required: After signing in and installing, you can play any of your games from any Xbox One because a digital copy of your game is stored on your console and in the cloud.  So, for example, while you are logged in at your friend’s house, you can play your games.

 

Share access to your games with everyone inside your home: Your friends and family, your guests and acquaintances get unlimited access to all of your games.  Anyone can play your games on your console–regardless of whether you are logged in or their relationship to you.

Give your family access to your entire games library anytime, anywhere: Xbox One will enable new forms of access for families. Up to ten members of your family can log in and play from your shared games library on any Xbox One. Just like today, a family member can play your copy of Forza Motorsport at a friend’s house. Only now, they will see not just Forza, but all of your shared games.  You can always play your games, and any one of your family members can be playing from your shared library at a given time.

 

Trade-in and resell your disc-based games: Today, some gamers choose to sell their old disc-based games back for cash and credit. We designed Xbox One so game publishers can enable you to trade in your games at participating retailers.  Microsoft does not charge a platform fee to retailers, publishers, or consumers for enabling transfer of these games.

 

Give your games to friends: Xbox One is designed so game publishers can enable you to give your disc-based games to your friends. There are no fees charged as part of these transfers. There are two requirements: you can only give them to people who have been on your friends list for at least 30 days and each game can only be given once.

 

 

https://news.xbox.com/en-us/2013/06/06/license/

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Yeah I read that page this morning. The proposed usage of digital games you own is pretty liberal. Are Xbox owners still able to allow up to 10 family members to access their entire collection from any console, any time? That sounds crazily exploitable. Even just being able to game share with one other using the 'set console as home Xbox' setting is pretty generous.

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A lot of these unintended consequence things they are doing seem, if you were to put on your tinfoil hat, as merely an oversight that exists to get people used to not having ownership rights, which they can choose to patch out at some point in the future as people use them not as explicitly intended sometimes. Cross region buying and account sharing being the two notable things you can use in ways not officially endorsed.

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