It depends on what they mean by always on. They could mean that it will always get pushed through updates and messages while off so that it is always up to date when you flip it on. That's fine. The question is if they mean "online required". That's where the issue would be.
I am afraid about the used game thing....not because I play or buy used games...I don't...but because I do trade them in when done. If I can't do that, this will severely restrict my game budget for the year.
Always-ON usually uses a -Flag or checkpoint system. The game can make a call to the server at anytime. Usually the first and only one the user can see visually is the initial login when the game first starts. -Flags are usually during events like cutscenes, loading screens and events pre-programmed and happen in the background without user input or knowledge. Always -ON checks for 3 things at any given point, -authorizekey, -stringkeymatch, -netresponse -authoirzekey is just that, does the key when you booted up match that on the serve -stingkeymatch checks save data and code to make sure it's not modified -netreponse pings your console to make sure it's online
If any of these return with a 'False' flag you get an error message or disconnected. Companies usually have tiny servers for authorization just because it's not a lot of data to store, however, with always on and you multiple it by tons of people, you simulate a DDoS and then nobody gets on, example Sim City, Diablo 3.
I love gaming on consoles - it's the only format I'll play a game on currently. After hours of working on a computer I just do not feel like playing a game on computer. However, if Microsoft's new Xbox forces an internet connection I will NEVER buy it. I am completely fed up with attempts of "anti-piracy" that just screw over honest players (and I wonder how much data they syphon from that always on internet connection?). Console games are coming with pass codes and licenses that lock you in to a single console blocking you from playing the game anywhere else or on a second or third console that you already own in your own home! Sometimes you can't even bring the game to someone else's place.
My friends and family feel the same way. We are just completely fed up with this business model. These businesses are so "afraid" of milking the last penny that they are trying nearly anything while frustrating and annoying their customer base. As you mentioned, Reinhold, just look at sim city.
Consoles are dead and tablets / mobile killed them. Historically consoles did one thing and did them very well and that's play games. They weren't media centers, hubs or even marvels of hardware. Now that there's this fundamental shift in thinking the hardware has to be and do everything. They've lost sight in the most important aspect of the industry...THE GAMES. Competing with the PC in doing everything is pointless, PC will always have and do everything better, plain in simple. If you look back at hardware, the best selling ones weren't the most powerful, it was the one with better and wider selection of games. Think the industry needs to remember this because you need developers to develop good games. The games sell the console, plain and simple, not extra equipment, movies and other gimmicks. People lined up for Halo, Gran Turismo, Mario, Sonic...etc, not for motion controls, controllers or graphics cards (and twitter..really? I'm sorry I'm too busy PLAYING THE GAME to tweet about it). Exclusives are dead because a lot of developers aren't willing to stick with one brand, they to want to maximize profit. Most 'exclusives' if not all are developed in-house, not by third parties (It wasn't always like that). Your seeing a recent rise in 'indie' developers because of this NEED their filling a DEMAND for games. MS and Sony realize this and recognize it as an untapped market AND a threat. On the one hand, all they do is charge them a licence fee and they make games for you, you bear no risk and do literally nothing accept take money. Bad side is if this little indie game dethrones your flagship games. They've done a good job of chasing away developers to Linux, Steam..etc and more open options that are more gamer friendly. Sony chases developers away with it's difficult architecture (yes it's a pain in the ass to develop for, yes EVERYONE complains about Sony doesn't care) MS offers easier architecture but wants money for everything (literally) and Nintendo is just limping along sticking with the old, what made them money decades ago that doesn't apply now strategy (Think that's because the current team is older generation and not willing to adopt to change). happens). Meanwhile in the real world, your seeing console like graphics on cellphones and tablets, consoles developed on open source platforms like Linux / Android and services that can stream pretty much any game on any platform from anywhere with an internet connection and for almost 1/4 of the cost.
I think consoles are only dead to the people who like PC games. Where are the great single player experiences? The Uncharteds, the Beyonds, the Heavy Rains, the God of Wars, the Infamous', the Zeldas, the Metroids? The list can go on and on. I don't care about FPSs, MMORPGs and Sim City. So there's nothing on PCs for me. Even when I hear of a good console game like Tomb Raider coming out on PC (or even ones I don't want, like Sim City), it seems all I see are stories about how it's not working for so many people and that it needs patches. Also, PCs can have the best graphics, true, but in order to run those games, I have to buy a $1200, realistically a 1500 dollar rig just to run them and that STILL may require me turning down shader and lighting quality. And that rig, unlike a console which will last me 7 years or more and will play every game released on it for the entire life of the system at max quality, will be considered top of the line for maybe 2 years before I'll start thinking about having to upgrade my video card or add more Ram...or whatever...to play the latest game. No thanks. I literally was in awe while playing Tomb Raider on my PS3, a 7 year old system. Maybe PC has the capacity to look better, but I don't want to pay that much that regularly, for games that I find boring.
Streaming technology is definitely the future, but unless PCs actually start getting games that I WANT to stream, I'll be sticking with consoles.
PC's get just about every console game, so the argument that PC's don't have the games...is a bit misleading, they actually get more and usually first dibs on them. Simply because; these games are built and designed on PC it's easier to port them over to restricted hardware with limited specs. During development of a few games we run emulators of the console we're developing for to see how it works and doesn't. I'm not sure where your getting 1200 dollars from. I've built Crysis 3 rigs from anywhere from 500-800 dollars, you just have to know what your doing and where to look. One of the staples of being a PC gamer is building and customizing your rig.
You also have to remember the PC is the ultimate media rig because it can do, pretty much anything a console can't do and is a better investment over the long haul. You may wonder how so, upgrading a console means buying a new one or waiting for a new generation. Upgrading a PC is a matter of buying more ram or a new video card without having to worrying about being 'banned' from online services for modifying the system.
The other thing people tend to overlook is PC on a whole get triple (how many console people are still playing say Oblivion versus PC)the replay value because of modding and user created modifications. Good example, when console companies decide to shutdown certain games. Guess where people come crawling back to? PC to play that game because user's can create their own servers.
Where are the great single player experiences? Since you don't play FPS and mmorpg's you're missing out on some of the best...ever. Restricting yourself to a simple console pretty much shuts you off from a lot of quality games from both bif developers and Indie, for example; Amnesia, Guild Wars, EVE online, Hawken, League of Legends, Starcraft, Strike Suit Zero...the list goes on and on. I have both 360 and PS4 and mostly use them for streaming movies from my PC (both their movie services are pretty bad and don't offer 3D either).
Consoles were in their prime when it was the heated SEGA versus Nintendo days. I guarantee, you give it a couple more years and those consoles will be software. You'll download the PS4 or Xbox app on your PC, phone, tv or tablet and will stream or download games from their library.
I can appreciate your point of view, but note that I didn't say that PCs didn't have games, just that it didn't have the kind of games I personally enjoy...which seem to reside exclusively on consoles, for whatever reason. You mentioned a lot of games, but so did I and none of the games I mentioned (action adventure) are available on PC. Like your list, mine would go on and on...but of games that I like to play.
You mention that because I don't like to play FPSs and MMORPGs that I'm missing out on some of the best games. That's not a legitimate argument because that's like saying if you don't like the taste of chocolate ice cream then you're missing out. The fact is that you aren't missing out...if you don't like the taste of chocolate. You're only missing out if you, say, LOVE chocolate but are allergic and CAN'T eat it...THEN you are missing out. So if I don't like those kinds of games, then I'm not 'missing' anything. The list of games you mentioned doesn't appeal to me at all. Not because they are on PC...I have a PC that could run most of them...I'm just not interested in them. And several of them aren't NOT single player experiences. They are online experiences with other people playing unless I'm missing something.
Regarding the expense of PCs you said that you built Crysis 3 rigs for between $500-800 bucks. But that "you just have to know what you're doing and where to look". The average person does NOT know how to assemble a PC and if they want to get one that plays Crysis 3 at full settings...they will have to rely on someone else to put the PC together. And I'm not talking about a family friend, I'm talking about Dell, Alienware, Gateway, New Egg...wherever...and those WILL cost 1200 bucks or more. But when Crysis 4 comes out, they'll have to upgrade their PC again to play it (sarcastically said). Whereas while Assassin's Creed has gotten progressively more graphically intensive with every (sadly) annual iteration, the point is that it will still work on the PS3 I bought 7 years ago, no upgrade necessary. No extra RAM, no new video card. In my opinion, the recently released Tomb Raider looks like a next generation game and can hold its own graphically against any PC game out there and yet, it's playing on 7 year old hardware. I've seen high end rigs playing Battlefield at industry events I've attended like the GDC...they look good, but I would only say marginally better than console games. Crysis 3 came out on PC, the PS3 version doesn't look quite as nice, but it looks really good and again, it's playing on 7 year old hardware. If I tried to play Crysis 3 on the computer I had 7 years ago, my PC would probably catch on fire, lol.
Don't get me wrong, PC's are the ultimate media center and if I had to give up either my console or PC, I'd keep my PC, but that's just because of everything ELSE that it can do. But there's definitely a reason why console games are killing PC games in sales even though there are far more PCs than there are consoles in the world. The thing that's killing consoles are mobile devices...but those same devices are also killing PCs as the email checking, facebook posting, youtube watching public are perfectly happy playing Angry Birds and ridiculous free Facebook games on their tablet devices. Even my PC use has dropped 80% since picking up an iPad. I think consoles and PCs should be equally scared of the mobile market.
If you look at the recent reports (from pretty much any source) PC sales are KILLING console sales almost every year. CNN actually did a special on it("Why console gaming is dying" [link]) and why console gaming needs to rethink it's strategy or face extinction. I believe the whole razor and blade method consoles use is killed by PC's easy access, streaming and digital distribution services not to mention huge leaps in technology.
Mobile and tablets are killing the consoles however, leaving PC sales almost untouched. The reason behind this is because all the games available for mobile and tablet are also available for PC. Then...maybe, down the road months to almost a year later ported to a console. The reason behind it is simple, follow the money. There's no money to be had from consoles anymore, it's a dying platform. The exclusives you mentioned before won't be, Sony has lost a lot of money and can't afford to give developers kick backs. Great example of this is Nintendo, Bayonetta was supposed to be a Nintendo exclusive. The developers recognized Nintendo is a sinking ship (and that the hardware "sucked"), refused the offer and developed for everyone. You can also look at Square-Enix originally exclusive to Nintendo, then Sony and now Everyone. They are also looking to be developing solely for mobile and PC platform in the upcoming months (You can get a lot of their games via Google Play and Appstore now). I can explain market penetration rates, development, consumer feedback and loyalty (South Korea has a network station dedicated to Starcraft 24/7)and how PC dominates there as well. You mentioned Crysis 3;
Crytek boss Cevat Yerli, restricted by non-disclosure agreements with both Microsoft and Sony, told Eurogamer "Crysis 3 running on a powerful PC looks better than next-generation games due to be announced. Indeed, he said it is "impossible" for consoles to match gaming PCs. Yerli also talked at length about how much Crytek enjoys pushing modern gaming PCs to their limits. Crytek is probably the only company where you read forums and YouTube, people are excited if they can't run the game," Yerli said. "I don't think it's like that at any other game company." "Now, of course, console games don't really need to look as good as PC games. Sitting 10 feet away from a 40-inch 1080p screen, you're bound not to see quite as many details as if you were nose up against a 27", 2560x1440 IPS monitor. Still, the graphical fidelity of a good PC is easy to notice—and it's good that companies like Crytek are making a point to exploit it."
I'm not sure how you got "PC sales are KILLING" console sales out of that article. In fact, that statement is so far from the truth its amazing in its inaccuracy. Have you actually read the article that you yourself actually quoted? Or did you do a google search on PC vs. Console Sales and thought the title of the article proved your point? Sales on consoles are shrinking, yes, but that's compared to the dominance it once had...but STILL continues to have over any other game delivery platform. The article you cite talks about the reduced sales of dedicated console games...but NEVER does it mention that PC sales are, as you put it, "KILLING console sales".
Here are some sales figures from Fortune magazine which was quoted in an article about how Console sales are shrinking compared to the growth of PC games:
“Times could be changing again, however. According to industry analyst NPD Group, sales of video-game hardware software and even accessories fell for a sixth consecutive month in May, tumbling 28% from a year earlier to $517 million. And with the release of Blizzard’s Diablo III, May also saw the first time since July 2010 that the top-selling game overall was a PC-only title. That boosted PC video games sales up year-over-year to 230% or $80 million.”
So even with a 28% DROP of overall profits, Console game sales are sitting at $517 MILLION. PC Sales, which have had a 230% INCREASE year-over-year are only at $80 million. That means PC games only make 15% of what console sales make despite the fact that there are way more PCs than there are consoles in the world. It also mentions that before Diablo 3 was released, it had been 3 years since a PC only title even made the overall top game sales for a month. And that increase is in a year that Diablo 3 hits which is a HUGE game.
The article you quoted also says: "the rise of casual and social gaming and waning consumer interest are affecting makers of the three big living-room consoles". It NEVER says that traditional PC games are hurting console sales. It doesn't talk about the type of games that you or I enjoy on PCs actually rising, it is talking about the HUGE surge in free-to-play or mobile game sales which TECHNICALLY are PC game sales and thus are of course, available on PCs, but those aren't the kind of games that you or I are referring to, correct? It never says that hardcore PC games are on the rise in sales. And although Angry Birds is technically on PC, people are playing it on their phones and their tablets...they aren't buying the type of PC needed to play Crysis on to play these simple games. It wouldn't surprise me that hardcore PC sales aren't down, because their audience is a small one who are fiercely loyal, whereas a lot of console purchasers are parents who are just getting something that their kids can play on, but now with mobile gaming on the rise, I have heard more kids asking for iPhones and iPads instead of Nintendo 3DSs and Vitas. But they aren't asking for PCs to play Sim City on.
Cevat Yerli was ALSO quoted as saying "that he was disappointed to see the game leading the charts in piracy and because of that his studio would not produce any more PC exclusives, as he believed a game such as Crysis would sell four to five times more copies if it was released on consoles". There are only 2 additional consoles that Crysis was released on and yet he says that he expected it to sell, 4-5x more copies than on PC. If PC sales were equal to console, it would only be 1-2x more copies. But even a huge proponent of PC gaming like Cevat knows that consoles make a lot more money than PCs do.
So don't let article TITLES confuse you...do the research. It's the numbers that actually matter in business, not conjecture. Until PC and Console manufacturers release info on their digital sales, we'll never know the true sway of things, that is true. All we can go on are the released sales figure facts (which show consoles dominating)...and what companies actually do. And what the facts show is that there are large numbers of games that game publishers release exclusively on consoles every month. If hardcore PC games were making that much money, then those same games would be released on PC as well. But they aren't. Simple as that.
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`anmari has been spreading her infectious positivity throughout our community for over 6 years. Throughout this time Ana has been at the core of all things devious, passionately developing an eclectic gallery, helping organise devmeets, participating in chat events and also recently completed dedicating her time as a Community Volunteer. We are absolutely delighted to bestow the Deviousness Award for May 2013 to `anmari, congratulations! Read More