As the storm surrounding Microsoft’s stance on used games and online connectivity swirls among core gaming enthusiasts, the question of broader impact has emerged often. Sure, those gamers that are tuned into the latest news are aware of the developing technical issues surrounding the Xbox One, but what about the more casual owners? I had the opportunity to speak just such a consumer.

It’s important to realize that this story is simply one data point. On the way to a meeting last night, I had a conversation with a cab driver by the name of Omar. When he found out what I do, he had a lot of questions about Microsoft and Sony, because he is concerned about how his gaming habits will be affected. He specifically mentioned the confusion surrounding used games and online connection requirements.

Omar owns a PlayStation 3. He doesn’t play adventure games or action games because he doesn’t have the time. In fact, he only owns one title: Pro Evolution, Konami’s annual soccer title. Omar uses his PlayStation 3 for Netflix and Blu-Ray movies. He plays five matches each week. He doesn’t attend midnight openings. He doesn’t even trade in games that often,

While Omar doesn’t represent every casual gamer, his story is an important one. Omar told me that he heard most of this news on CNN and directly from Redbox (who sent out an email to all of its customers, even if they’ve never rented a game), not on Game Informer or one of our peers. We’ve wondered if next-gen concerns are trickling out into the mainstream, and it seems that they are. Whether the press conference news will help counterbalance the negative buzz that lead up to E3 will be something we'll be watching intently.

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