Apparently the forums are clamoring with Microsoft fanboys starting to justify why drm is okay. Ive never seen such a dedicated "crap all over me" group of bottom feeders.
That's because Microsoft is finally starting to pull their head out of their asses (albeit ridiculously slowly) and actually try and market their features, rather than just listing off horrible, horrible restrictions without even bothering to highlight how this could work for the audience.
I don't like Always On DRM when it is actually just in place for DRM. But if an online connection is integral to the core experience of the game, that makes sense. That's why it's fine to have MMOs require you to be online, but it's not okay for a solely single-player experience to have the same requirement.
If Microsoft can come up with some system that makes the online connection something substantially desirable in its own right, their problem goes away. They get their free DRM slipped in with this "feature." Even better, they can get the essence of DRM without actually mandating the online requirement. People COULD play a game used, but then they lose out on the super awesome online bonus stuff.
Of course, that means they need to come up with something that's intrinsically linked to being online that makes the whole experience better. And you know what? I can think of plenty of things that could be that cool, at least in the context of RPGs.
But bluntly forcing it into the public's eyes, purely for the sake of DRM, is an absolutely idiotic move. They didn't even bother trying to cage it in terms of what the connection was doing for you - they just announced it would need to connect and that was that.
Also, used games aren't nearly as important as the amount of attention they get suggests they would be.
According to Gamestop, in 2012 they made:
Global sales: $8.89 billion.
Gross profit: 27.4%
Percentage of those sales which are used games: 27.4%
Gross profit from used games: 41.8%
So, of that $8.89 billion in sales, it was a profit of 27.4%, or $2.43 billion. 41.8% of that was from used games, or $1 billion, globally, across all games. NOTE: This also contains all systems and peripherals, and new hardware represents 15% of their sales ("other" is 17.3%).
The vast majority of their sales are in the form of new games. The problem is that selling new games isn't that profitable. And they aren't in control of that, because the publisher sets the price.
Globally, the video game industry brings in $65 billion a year. That $1 billion that one company is making isn't making or breaking anyone
For one, because there's absolutely no reason to think that 100% of that $1 billion would enter into the pockets of publishers anyway. We'd need to know what the percentage of people would buy a game at full price, even if they couldn't get it at the $60 price point. So you can already remove a fair amount of that cash out of the video game industry.
Then you need to remember that there are people buying new games using the profits from trading in old titles. I have no clue how common that is. I've only ever traded in games when strapped for cash, but I also know people who trade them in when done, for credit, which they later use to buy a new game. The publisher makes the same amount of cash regardless of if you hand Gamestop cash or use credit.
And considering you get a MUCH larger return for games when using credit, I imagine that it's not an insignficant population. So there's some formula along the lines of "For every X games traded in, Y new games are purchased." I have no clue what it is.
But even if we say it's $600 million being taken out of publisher pockets, globally, across all games, that's really not that much. And I'd wager that the end sum is less than that.
/shrug. Edited, Jun 14th 2013 1:04pm by idiggory