The lights are on
The Game Informer reader polls that appear on the front page are often very revealing about our readership. For instance, I would like the 50 percent of you who never played Mega Man 2 to stop what you're doing and go take care of that. I'll wait.
Now that you're back (how long did it take you to figure out that you need to use the Bubble Lead?), I want to draw your attention to our most recent inquiry. We asked if you would purchase an "always-on" console (as Microsoft is rumored to be considering for the next Xbox). Out of the 900 respondents (as of publication), approximately 81 percent indicated that they would not be willing to purchase gaming hardware that requires an internet connection at all times. Of course, this is just an infinitesimal sliver of the global user base, but the trend is worth noting.
The numerical sentiment is backed up by some choice comments culled from a recent story we ran about the rumor (and the fallout over Microsoft Studios' creative director Adam Orth's impolitic statements on the matter).
"If this is true, I'll say goodbye to the next Xbox."
- Yukie Mayuzumi
"There's no way this is a good idea. ISPs go down, internet connections lost, NAT issues persist, some folks want to play in their SUVs or while traveling on vacation, and still others don't want to shell out $60 each month for internet. There's just no way. Nope."
"Seriously did the industry learn NOTHING from Diablo 3 and Sim City? Always online gaming is a TERRIBLE idea."
"If this is true, I see the xbox only doing well in the US. They severely underestimate the importance of offline gaming, especially in so many other countries."
The concern isn't unanimous, though. Many people aren't willing to believe Microsoft would make such a risky decision.
"I don't think Microsoft is in the business of not making money. They will want to saturate the market with the new Xbox consoles. It won't happen if they follow this rumor, especially if their competitors aren't going to. Also, too many variables to consider to actually believe this type of model will be successful. Homes with no/bad Internet connection, negative attitudes towards always online, no used games, competitors having a more favorable model, don't have as many first party IP's as Nintendo & Sony to help carry it, etc."
"I could always be wrong, but I actually have a good feeling that they won't require constant internet connection. That's a very risky move, and I don't think Microsoft would be irrational enough to implement that. They would lose too many sales over something stupid and insignificant. It makes no business sense, let alone gaming sense."
- Michael Hentemann
"I'm not going to believe in "require always-on internet" till last moment when Microsoft will say it from stage. It's too risky move, and very hostile to the consumer I think."
Whether Microsoft will, in fact, require an active internet connection to use their next generation console won't be known for certain until the company is ready to share. Based on rumors surfacing from tech blogger Paul Thurrott and affirmed to be accurate by The Verge's sources, Microsoft will be providing details on May 21, 2013. Even if the May 21 speculation doesn't prove to be true, this is a scant three weeks before E3. The gap is much tighter than originally intended, if previous rumors about a late April showing had any credence.
Email the author Mike Futter, or follow on Google+, Twitter, and Game Informer.
"how long did it take you to figure out that you need to use the Bubble Lead"
... Are you kidding me? Of all the things I tried...
I'll be back in an hour or so.
I guess we all wait and see.I for one will not get a new Xbox if the always on is true.
For Microsoft to earn the money out of my pocket they will have to bring a lot more to the table than just Halo 5, kinect 2 and Gears of War. Why would I buy a new game console when their only true franchises are as stale as their current console. And as kinect might of been a commercial success, it was little more than a fish out of water when it came to grabbing on to the core audience that has made Microsoft a titan in the industry. If you want me to put up with the headache of an always on connection, you have to show me that what you're bringing to the table is worth all the cursing and yelling. Why bother buying a game on a console that will push me back to the main menu when my connection goes out when the other will just notify me that there is connection error and lets me continue on my merry little way
i dont support this for one reason , my laptop is portable and has steam, i can game on a coach bus, e cafe or what have you , can you do that with an alsways online thing? NO? then *** off and do some work you lazy companies but as always valve does it better thena nyone
If the next Xbox is always online, it could knock Microsoft out of the console race.
After dealing with spotty dorm internet for three years, I can wholeheartedly with the general consensus that always-on consoles are a bad idea. Anyone, and I mean ANYONE, who says video game consoles should always require an internet connection are out of touch and inconsiderate of those who either can't afford it, don't live somewhere with broadband penetration, or a whole host of other reasons. If an iPhone can play games without an internet connection, there's no reason a $500 console shouldn't be able to.
I would have responded to the Megaman 2 poll but I've only played through it once so I wouldn't know. If it was Megaman 6 however...I know that one inside and out in every which way.
I may not buy it right out of the gate, but I might if there's a "special edition" Halo console or something of that variety. The deal-breaker for me is DRM licensing. If I buy a game and it won't allow me to sell it to GameStop for pennies on the dollar, then I don't want it. I'll go for the PS4 instead (who has already confirmed they will NOT block used games).
the only reason they are even looking at it is a way to combat piracy. If the rumors were true, and you couldn't play offline, then you couldn't install mods to your console to allow you to play burned games. Which means you would be forced to buy games legit. It would also cut out the people who cheat their way to achievements through going offline and changing their date/time settings. I don't think they will the backlash from the twitter comments have been bad enough, that going through with it could be a death sentence.
I voted no, but I really don't care. Also, online sometimes causes problems.
If these rumors turn out to be untrue (which is likely), it will only make Microsoft look good. If gamers get all worked up over this, and then Microsoft says that the rumors are false, people will like them and likely buy their console. I will NEVER buy an always-on system. Because of where I live, the only internet available is a mobile broadband card from AT&T.
Think about it, if this is true and Microsoft eventually shuts off its servers, that is hundreds of dollars you spend that you can no longer access