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Thread: The fears for gaming history.

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    Default The fears for gaming history.

    So after my angry ranting to all of my friends about the XBox One announcement and the possibility of PS4 DRM, I began thinking about the new generation as a whole. I'm going to be referencing the XBO primarily in this thread since Microsoft gave much more information about their new policies than Sony did.

    When I truly think about the XBO, I actually like almost all of the features. Installing to the hard drive and not having to insert the disc to play is very convenient, especially when swapping games. The concept that I can finally say 'XBox on' and my system turns on is a feature I waned for the Kinect, and the voice commands are the best thing about the device (some of the games are pretty decent too). Switching the right bar to use IE means that I can be playing and make a quick run to gamefaqs or other guide sites if I'm stuck; that's pure genius. All the TV features are really nice to have, but since I don't watch a lot of TV, if any, they're just a bonus for my personal lifestyle. Other people might find this feature useful, and it might be what causes some people to purchase the system.

    Now I can see a problem with the constant connection. If you're in the military, in a company where your IT department doesn't support the requirements for LIVE, or you have your XB set up in a place where it can't connect to the router, then this is a problem. It doesn't really have much effect on me, and I will place a gamble that for a great number of people, it won't matter at all. But it will cause a lot of issues for certain customers and that will cause them to stick with the 360/PS3.

    The next issue is the Kinect always being on. Now call me a little over optimistic on this, but I seriously doubt that Microsoft is stupid to the point that they're going to spy on people in their living rooms/game rooms/garages/bathrooms etc. There would be a crazy number of inside whistle blowers and very large number of privacy lawsuits that MS would no doubt lose. I don't work for Microsoft, but I have some confidence that the company lawyers are not just monkeys in a cage flinging feces at each other. Any smart lawyer would advice against this, and as big as MS is, the chances of them doing something like this is probably nil. The game industry has done some shady shit, but this would blow everything out of the water and I guarantee the US court system wouldn't allow it.

    So after all that, the main thing that I was touting would be the deal breaker for me was the restrictions placed on used games and having to register the discs to the system. After thinking about this for a long time, I think I'd be nothing short of a hypocrite if I said this was the main deal breaker. We do this already with delivery systems like Games On Demand and Steam, and I am a huge fan of Steam. The real issue for me is that once Microsoft decides to stop supporting the XBO, the history of the system is gone. All of the discs you have will no longer play on the system, and are then useless coasters. This is what scares me, and is the only thing I don't like about the future of digital downloads. I can still pop out my SNES and as long as the system works and I have a cartridge that works, I can play games that are 20-30 years old. Even if all the SNES systems in the world went ka-put, there is still the emulation crowd to keep that history alive. Yes, downloading roms is illegal, but I don't give a shit, and I'll bank that nobody else gives a shit either. The requirements for a system that requires DRM dodges the problem that people can pirate the game and it has a lot of conveniences, but it does not preserve the history after said system is gone. Those games become nothing short of a memory to never be played again. That's why I toute the greatness of the humble bundles. I can download a separate exe that installs the game without DRM if Steam ever decides to vanish.

    Overall, it's the history of systems, or the destruction of, that will make or break the future of gaming for me. I like collecting games, and I like having a library of games that shows off the years of history the industry has provided. Once we get to the point where games becomes nothing but a bunch of throw away code, then it is just no longer worth it to me to keep purchasing console systems. The PC has transcended generations and it looks like it will be the only 'system' that will have any shot of preserving any history of gaming.

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    Well, they're still selling vinyl albums of new material because people buy them to collect. I think that may still happen in some fashion. What sucks is eventually the next generation of kids will run down to their Christmas tree, to open up presents, and instead of a game in a case, they'll find a generic gift card with points on it. BOOOO! Ha ha ha.

    I would also suspect that that when say an Xbox One goes legacy in a decade, you could probably mod it to ignore the DRM and play games.
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    The long-term preservation of future generations of console gaming won't be impossible, but it'll no longer be within the means of individual collectors. Instead, it'll likely fall to the various cracking, modding, and pirate groups that are out there. My own hope is that they'll rise to the challenge, and I say this as someone who has zero interest in actually pirating anything. But personally, I'd feel much more comfortable buying one of these systems and games for them if I knew that I could put in some kind of authentication emulator or whatever it ends up being further down the line when the official servers are taken down for whatever reason.

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    Change happens.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Berserker View Post
    The long-term preservation of future generations of console gaming won't be impossible, but it'll no longer be within the means of individual collectors. Instead, it'll likely fall to the various cracking, modding, and pirate groups that are out there. My own hope is that they'll rise to the challenge, and I say this as someone who has zero interest in actually pirating anything. But personally, I'd feel much more comfortable buying one of these systems and games for them if I knew that I could put in some kind of authentication emulator or whatever it ends up being further down the line when the official servers are taken down for whatever reason.
    Sadly I think you're 100% correct.

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    Nothing's really changed in that respect Berserker, many of the areas I collect and preserve in have been helped by those people who did crack and pirate back in the day. Only it'll become perhaps the ONLY way for the next generation in order to preserve anything.

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    ServBot (Level 11) BHvrd's Avatar
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    I blame the Xbox generation in general personally. Peoples willingness to pay for online services and micro transaction fees proved there was money to be made. Consumers sent the message to continue doing so with their wallets.

    Before that it was all about just creating good games, not all this hyperbole of technology "gotta have it" iphone generation bs.

    Whatever. I'll sit here and eat my popcorn like I have always done and enjoy watching people complain about digging themselves into a hole and in the meantime pick my gaming experiences wisely and actually enjoy the hobby the way I always have, by playing.

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    Maybe the future is the eventual collapse/complete transformation of the industry or a blurring line between the influence of indie and the big ones. More freedom to customize your own hardware (without the hassle and money required to keep your PC up to date) and possibilities for smaller companies to compete with ideas instead of resources and hardware horsepower. If someone likes the idea of Xbox One, by all means let them piss their money on it. Even if it were to become the industry norm, does it mean we "have" to accept it? Does their behavior have the power to dictate the direction? Will there then be no alternatives if you want to play new games?

    I mean, just how many times can we be made to buy the same console, only with more oomph, a wackier controller and a spiffier design? Would you guys buy a PS7 or Xbox Tango with games like Call of Duty: Duty Calls or God of War: Kratos Takes On The Roman Pantheon?

    I wouldn't like to play "Aluminum Gear" starring "Flaccid Reptile" on a "D-BoxStation" console just to fool myself that I don't like playing games by big companies. Because some of them are really good and I'm not really rooting for their demise. But I also don't want to keep playing those if it means I'm forced to support whatever the hardware manufacturers decide to slap on the table.
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    As a collector, I feel the same way a lot of you do: I want to be able to play the original games on the original hardware for the most authentic experience. But beginning with this next batch of consoles, that scenario is going to start slipping away irrevocably. It's symptomatic of the larger problem of the digitization of information. There's an old saying that states "the medium is the message." In our current era, this is no longer the case. The modern world requires massive amounts of information to be moved around extremely quickly, taking up as little tangible space as possible. So physical media is seen as an obstacle to this end. Music stores, book stores, newspapers, and the post office are all traditional distributers of physical media and therefore have been some of digitization's first casualties. Video games and consoles will eventually follow suit. It's the next evolutionary step. Now what concerns me most about this transition is the loss of the cultural and social networks surrounding physical media distribution. What kind of world would we be living in if there were no more game, music, book, or video stores? It's already happening. Those places we could go to interact with others who share a similar passion or interest are disappearing. And I think that's the bigger tragedy. Before long, all that'll be left for us collectors and enthusiasts will be online forums like this one. And as much as I love reading and sharing information with others on this board, it's not the same as interacting with someone face to face in a physical location created specifically for the purpose of bringing people who share a common love together. It's what makes us human and what makes us happy. We're organic creatures with organic needs. That's why it feels so good to hold that cartridge or optical disc in your hands as you insert it into your player. We need tactile gratification... which is something that a formless string of ones and zeroes simply can't provide.

    Having said that, it is my firm belief that vinyl records will continue to be made until the end of time!
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    I like and can see the whole limited edition physical releases like the vinyl comparison. Its better than nothing also while we're headed in this direction its still gonna take some time and could always change to

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    I actually doubt I'll even buy the system until someone hacks it to bypass the DRM. I don't even like to play games online because when gaming I don't like to interact with other real people (especially not a bunch of potty-mouthed 13 year olds using their dad who doesn't give a shit's account), I just want to interact with the other characters in the game. I am not going to invest in collecting for a system that may or may not play my games in the distant future. But if the DRM gets cracked then I'll have confidence that I can keep the games I buy and in effect they would get more sales for me. So here is a situation where hacking will boost sales rather than decrease them. This decision is a long way off though. I'm going to be sticking with 3DS and possibly soon a Vita before I get the Wii U or anything else.
    [quote name='Shidou Mariya' date='Nov 17 2010, 10:05 PM' post='4889940']
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    Quote Originally Posted by Greg2600 View Post
    What sucks is eventually the next generation of kids will run down to their Christmas tree, to open up presents, and instead of a game in a case, they'll find a generic gift card with points on it. BOOOO! Ha ha ha.
    To keep in line with more traditional gifts, parents will start giving different tangible gifts instead. Like giving sweaters or socks. So thanks current video game industry.


    As for records, it depends on the buyer. A lot of people are opting to buy current music on vinyl because of the sound quality. Plenty of people still listen to vinyl albums on high end stereo equipment as it sounds better than CDs on whatever cheap current hardware is now available, plus with most new CDs they're mastered poorly so the vinyl record has a chance at sounding better. Or people refusing to pay for MP3s as they're compressed, still sticking with music on high end cassette walkmans for portability.

    It's really a big reason why the music industry isn't doing so well. The people willing to spend big bucks on music are sticking with older formats mainly because the older formats and equipment have better quality sound than what's currently available. Instead they're focusing on making the equipment as cheap as possible to get more cheap people to buy it, if they're not willing to spend much on equipment why would they spend much on the music itself? Plenty of people still spend thousands of dollars on music, it's just that they're now focused mostly on the used market as the products they want are no longer available new.

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    Consoles were doomed once they tried to act like PC's. I guess now they cant go back to being just consoles to play games with. The XBO announcement was interesting to me in the first 15 minutes because they didnt want to be seen as a cheap computer, but people hated what they were showing about that.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gameguy View Post
    with most new CDs they're mastered poorly so the vinyl record has a chance at sounding better.
    Yes.

    Quote Originally Posted by Gameguy View Post
    Or people refusing to pay for MP3s as they're compressed, still sticking with music on high end cassette walkmans for portability.
    lol No.

    Quote Originally Posted by JakeM View Post
    Consoles were doomed once they tried to act like PC's. I guess now they cant go back to being just consoles to play games with.
    It's funny- 12 years ago, gamers bashed the GameCube because it was purely a video game console, without all the extra bells and whistles. Now, gamers bash the new consoles because they have all the extra bells and whistles, instead of being purely a video game console.

    It just goes to show gamers don't know what the hell they want.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rob2600 View Post
    lol No.
    I do know some people who are like that, sticking with high end Aiwa or Sony Professional models and still using them as portable players with actual cassette tapes when travelling. Of course they need servicing first as the belts, gears, pinch rollers, and capacitors are starting to fail.

    I'm not saying it's a large number of people who are doing this, but there are forums of people like this. Plenty of people want to stick with analog formats for sound, even when transfering vinyl albums they'll stick with cassette tapes rather than CDs or other uncompressed digital formats just to keep the sound analog. If it's been transfered to a good quality Metal cassette they'll use a high end Walkman to play it when travelling, otherwise they'll just play it at home on their high end stereo equipment like Nakamichi cassette decks.

    It's like the people on this forum still asking about taking Sega Nomads or TurboExpress systems with them when travelling, instead of just emulating the games on modern portables which is entirely possible, much more convenient, and even cheaper than the original hardware at this point. Used PSPs are cheaper than used Nomad now.



    As for the bells and whistles, look at early disc based systems like the Turbo Duo and Sega CD. Even those could play regular audio CDs which was kind of a big deal back then. The PS1 had the same trend, and the PS2 could play DVDs which again was a big deal at the time. Then you had the Gamecube, this couldn't even play audio CDs and compared to the competition which could play the new DVDs, it looked lacking.

    These new features included with consoles aren't really bonuses, they're almost the main focus now. Anything focused on online services or online accounts I'm not interested in, I don't care at all about Netflix, streaming video content, or video calling(whatever they're offering new consoles to do), that's what my PC is for. You can do that on old PCs as well, it's not something new. With DVDs I know every PC can play those now, but back when the PS2 came out I had an old PC that couldn't play those and I wasn't planning to upgrade anytime soon. The PS2 looked pretty appealing just for that reason.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rob2600 View Post
    Yes.



    lol No.



    It's funny- 12 years ago, gamers bashed the GameCube because it was purely a video game console, without all the extra bells and whistles. Now, gamers bash the new consoles because they have all the extra bells and whistles, instead of being purely a video game console.

    It just goes to show gamers don't know what the hell they want.
    I don't think most Gamers care about buying a device to supplement or replace their DVR or cable box. They did, however, want a device to be able to play DVDs and CDs (i.e. other entertainment software) in the Gamecube era, especially when the other two consoles at the time could do so and DVD players were still on the expensive side.

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    Well, as Jim Sterling points out on Destructoid (I'm paraphrasing here) "Not only do I already have devices that do all the non-gaming stuff the Xbox One can do, I already own devices that do those things better. And for free." That's one of my major issues with Xbox One as well - Xbox Live subscription costs seem silly when my "smart" Blu-ray player will let me watch Netflix without paying a fee (other than to Netflix and my ISP of course). Hell, the damn Wii will let me do it. I am not going to PAY Microsoft for the privilege.

    Slightly more on the original topic: Historic preservation is one of the reasons I am a fan of emulation. We may not live to see it but the day will come when the last NES/SNES/MD/Whatever gasps its last breath and dies. Or, the day may come when input technology has changed so much that we can no longer hook up our favorite retro consoles to display devices. Whatever the cause, it seems inevitable that there will come a day when playing on original hardware is no longer tenable. What will we do then? Just never play the classics again? Forget they exist?

    Of course not! Emulation is the key to long term preservation of the medium. Sure there are some legal/financial issues to sort out but we'll figure that stuff out. Original hardware is a great thing and I like it myself - but long term, we should all be rooting for emulation too if we are serious about preservation down the road.

    Given what we know about the Xbox One's authentication system, etc. it definitely looks like preservation will be difficult. Who knows, maybe one day video game historians will refer to the 8th generation as the "lost generation."

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    If you're worried about gaming history, you'd probably do well to forget traditional gaming - PC and console - almost entirely. Most gaming is on mobile phones at this point. Something like 1/10 of the entire population of Japan bought Puzzle and Dragons. Mobile games are even more diaphanous than Xbox One or Steam games; with Steam, you probably won't ever be able to use old versions of a game again, but you could at least copy files down. And with the Xbox One there is a disc involved at some point, theoretically. On mobile devices, you get the double whammy of a locked-in DRM system and there is no obvious way to back up files for almost all users (and even users with great technical skills haven't been able to copy and run many games for posterity).

    So much content is being churned out and then essentially flushed within a year or two of its release.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Zthun View Post
    Now I can see a problem with the constant connection.... It doesn't really have much effect on me...
    Ugh. This line... There is more than one side to an internet connection. You can have the best internet in the world and it means nothing without the connecting point. So yes, it WILL have an effect on you, whether it's in the form of maintenance downtime, the 2007 Xbox Live mess, or the PSN outage, or worse (!).

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    it's true.

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