Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Microsoft's Hand Possibly Forced on Future Xbox Connectivity

With tonight's podcast going into discussion on Microsoft's Creative Director Adam Orth's comments about Xbox 720 rumors, we figured it would be good to provide a summarized recap of the events. For starters there have been rumors circulating around for some time that the future Xbox console was to feature an always-on function; meaning that in order to use the console, one would have to keep a constant internet connection going. This doesn't mean what you would normally think, in that this just means you have to have an internet connection to access certain features of a game like multiplayer. No, in actuality this would mean that to even play a purely single player campaign in a game that doesn't even have online features, you would still need to stay connected to the internet. Such speculation on reasoning behind this idea includes strengthening DRM (Digital Rights Management), fighting piracy, or fighting against used games since authorization would be required each time it's accessed. Now Microsoft has been rather hush-hush on this whole matter, wanting to keep speculation alive and user interests to continue in growing. For all we know, they could be keeping silent because the spreading of such a rumor is still providing advertising for their console, allowing them to officially put down such rumors at a later date and seem like heroes. Enter Adam Orth on Twitter who says that players need to just "deal with it" should a service come into existence. Following this comment came a rather tremendous backlash from all across the internet (as one would expect). This soon lead to a conversation on Twitter with BioWare's Senior Designer Manveer Heir.


Now before anyone decides they need to rant and rage at good ol' Orthy, first know that the above comments may be out of context. Heir soon stated that Adam Orth is an old friend of his and that this kind of conversation is the usual style of joking around that they do. This wasn't meant to be a deliberately insulting post, but more just Heir being trolled by a friend.  The problem with this, though, is that instead of it being a private conversation, it was a done publicly and in response to a legitimate concern on the future Xbox console. Whether or not this was a joke doesn't really matter, in the end the comments are there and made by someone whom can be considered a high-up representative of Microsoft.  In any case, it should be interesting to see how Microsoft plays this one out now that there is a potential risk of a wide-spread negative build-up on their future console. 
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