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Xbox Fans Lament Family Sharing

[Family Sharing] was a feature of the Xbox One that very few people seemed to know about, but for those that "got" it, yesterday's announcement that Microsoft were dropping more or less everything that had previously been announced was a bitter-sweet reveal.

That feature has now been dropped and, despite a wider victory for gaming as a whole, those that had already pre-ordered and were almost definitely going to purchase the console aren't especially happy.

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GameCents1552d ago

I suppose this is the new jabbing point? Not gonna sting nearly as bad as DRM and used game restrictions.
Although I don't see why they can't implement family sharing for digital games. Sour grapes I suppose.

fermcr1552d ago (Edited 1552d ago )

The family sharing only makes sense if the console is always online (or once every 24 hours)... otherwise you could have 10 family members offline, with the same game installed on all of their consoles and each one playing the game at the same time.

The console has to be always online (or once every 24 hours) to implement something like family sharing. There has to be a server to control the family sharing, and that server would have to be online.

BlindGuardian1552d ago (Edited 1552d ago )

PLEASE READ:

FROM http://majornelson.com/2013...

THE FAMILY PLAN WAS A LIE:

Here is the full alleged M$ employee open letter from pastebin (dot) com (slash) TE1MWES2. Read so you can understand what people smarter than you accomplished on your behalf while you rally against them.

Going back to Xbox One's feature set, one of the features I was most proud of was Family Sharing. I've browsed many gaming forums and saw that many people were excited about it as well! That made my day the first time I saw gamers start to think of amazing experiences that could come from game sharing. It showed that my work resonated with the group for which I helped create it for. I will admit that I was not happy with how some of my fellow colleagues handled explaining the systems and many times pulled my hair out as I felt I could have done a better job explaining and selling the ideas to the press and public at large. I'm writing this for that reason, to explain to gamers how many of the features would have worked and how many of them will still work.

First is family sharing, this feature is near and dear to me and I truly felt it would have helped the industry grow and make both gamers and developers happy. The premise is simple and elegant, when you buy your games for Xbox One, you can set any of them to be part of your shared library. Anyone who you deem to be family had access to these games regardless of where they are in the world. There was never any catch to that, they didn't have to share the same billing address or physical address it could be anyone. When your family member accesses any of your games, they're placed into a special demo mode. This demo mode in most cases would be the full game with a 15-45 minute timer and in some cases an hour. This allowed the person to play the game, get familiar with it then make a purchase if they wanted to. When the time limit was up they would automatically be prompted to the Marketplace so that they may order it if liked the game. We were toying around with a limit on the number of times members could access the shared game (as to discourage gamers from simply beating the game by doing multiple playthroughs). but we had not settled on an appropriate way of handling it. One thing we knew is that we wanted the experience to be seamless for both the person sharing and the family member benefiting. There weren't many models of this system already in the wild other than Sony's horrendous game sharing implementation, but it was clear their approach (if one could call it that) was not the way to go. Developers complained about the lost sales and gamers complained about overbearing DRM that punished those who didn't share that implemented by publishers to quell gamers from taking advantage of a poorly thought out system. We wanted our family sharing plan to be something that was talked about and genuinely enjoyed by the masses as a way of inciting gamers to try new games.

e at Microsoft have amazing plans for Xbox One that will make it an amazing experience for both gamers and entertainment consumers alike. I stand by the belief that Playstation 4 is Xbox 360 part 2, while Xbox One is trying to revolutionize entertainment consumption. For people who don't want these amazing additions, like Don said we have a console for that and it's called Xbox 360.

Finch1551d ago

If true it makes more since to make every game a demo with that timer instead of calling it sharing. I do not believe this to be the case of sharing. They put it into a demo mode just to try to sell you a game. Would it not make more sence to make every game have a demo mode without calling it sharing to sell more games? To only demo in a shared mode will get less people tring it compared to just making every game have a demo with a timer.

DeathofSouls1552d ago (Edited 1552d ago )

Please help me get the word out PEOPLE ARE UPSET about something that was never going to happen the way they thought it would!!!

"Heartbroken Xbox One employee lets rip" a blog

"When your family member accesses any of your games, they’re placed into a special demo mode. This demo mode in most cases would be the full game with a 15-45 minute timer and in some cases an hour."

Source
http://www.heyuguysgaming.c...

dennett3161552d ago

If that's from a real employee, it actually shows that the family sharing idea was WORSE than I thought it was.
I already thought it was restrictive by only allowing 2 people to access the shared library at a time, and only allowing access to single player. To find out it was basically a timed demo actually stuns me. How pathetic a supposed "feature" that was.
I truly think some people had visions in their heads of playing Call of Duty with 10 people off a single copy of the game. Unbelievable.

MasterCornholio1552d ago (Edited 1552d ago )

OMG and thats the feature that XBOX fans were bragging about?

Thats horrible.

I knew that the family sharing would have limits but i wasnt expecting them to be so bad.

Thank god Microsoft axed it otherwise the public would have killed them for it.

rainslacker1552d ago

I told people not to get too excited over it until the details were given. I just didn't see publishers going for such a thing, since I felt it was a complete and utter replacement(if not worse) than the 2nd hand market.

The time limit makes sense, and I knew there would be something like that involved.

Whether or not this source is credible or not is up for debate, but common sense would dictate that something like game sharing would have a huge astrix mark by it.

kneon1551d ago

I don't believe this rumor as it would have made the sharing absolutely pointless. They could have just made every game available as a demo. Since the point of demo is to get people to try your game and hopefully buy it there is no point in restricting who can access the demo.

This is a load of BS. It's like someone is trying to make up a rumor so people stop complaining about losing the game sharing.

+ Show (1) more replyLast reply 1551d ago
Godmars2901552d ago

Yeah, they could and should have left DDL open to sharing since physical copies are now required to remain on disc.

Guess if they ever intend to reintroduce the DRM, that's how they'll do.

Then again all this might be because publishers didn't like and just realized that the family sharing plan could have cut into their sales by a factor of ten.

wishingW3L1552d ago

nobody even knows how this worked exactly, explanations were always confusing. What they are lamenting is the idea they created in the minds about how it worked.

matgrowcott1552d ago

I'm not going to argue about the quality either way here, but I'm honestly not sure what you didn't understand.

From the official MS website:

"Xbox One will enable new forms of access for families. Up to ten members of your family can log in and play from your shared games library on any Xbox One. Just like today, a family member can play your copy of Forza Motorsport at a friend’s house. Only now, they will see not just Forza, but all of your shared games. You can always play your games, and any one of your family members can be playing from your shared library at a given time."

Sure, there's room for clarification. We don't know if it would have been cloud-based or download based, for instance. But either way, it's hardly a deal breaker if the end result is free games.

THamm1552d ago (Edited 1552d ago )

any one of your family members can be playing from your shared library at a given time

one not all, idont think two can be online at once, right?

Ilovetheps41552d ago

Well what about the article that just popped up saying that the feature was set up more as a demo? A "family member" could play the game for about 45 minutes and then it would quit the game and prompt the "family member" to buy the full game. I highly doubt they would allow 11 people to play a game by only paying once.

It honestly doesn't matter anymore though. The feature is gone.

matgrowcott1552d ago

AS opposed to the new system, which means one person can play at a time... Or nothing.

@ILovethePS4

I've read through all of Microsoft's official material and not heard the demo thing. DO you have a source?

THamm1552d ago

@matgrowcott

Yes if they wee pushing it as a selling point then it would matter if two or more can game at once, since literally it would be almost No different than what we have today except the physical handling of a disc

matgrowcott1552d ago

"it would matter if two or more can game at once"

You always have access to your games, plus one other person can play any other game on your list at a time.

So, let's say you have 10 games. You can pick any one of those games and play to your heart's content. Your 10 friends can each take one of those games (but not if someone else is already playing). As soon as a game comes free, your friends can swap around and choose something else from your list.

How in the hell is that anything like what we have now? The closest we have, on a worldwide scale, would mean copying games, hacking your system and sending disks long distance.

StuffofLegend1552d ago

@matgrowcott
Here's a link. I wouldn't know if the source is trustworthy or not though.

http://www.heyuguysgaming.c...

rainslacker1552d ago (Edited 1552d ago )

@mat

It's just common sense that this feature wouldn't be what MS was saying it would be. What is the point in restricting 2nd hand sales, if people can just share a game between 10 friends. That's basically saying instead of a new game that gets brought, then maybe sold 2-3 times, you can now have a single game that is going to be potentially used by 10 people.

The idea of game sharing was on PS3. People abused it, and Sony restricted it, possibly because publishers didn't like losing potential sales.

All the DRM restrictions on X1 were to gain money off of game sales, even the used market. Why would MS make a completely awesome feature that cuts money from new game sales? It just doesn't add up.

Hicken1552d ago

Don't expect sense out of mat. Or, at least, don't expect him to use it.

It would have been completely counterintuitive for them to allow limitless use of one game to eleven people, when all the other things they were doing were such strong attempts to limit more than one person playing off a single copy of a game.

THamm1552d ago

Watch the Angry Joe Larry Hrb interview, the wording that Major uses to go around the question tells all. There is a catch 4 min in, he repeats "check it out"

http://www.youtube.com/watc...

matgrowcott1552d ago (Edited 1552d ago )

@StuffofLegend

Thanks! Best presume that's completely fake at this point. Came from a random anonymous PasteBin.

@Rainslacker

They get nothing from second hand sales and everything from digital sales. I mean, aren't people generally arguing that used sales are good for the industry because it generates interest and long term revenue?

Same here. Someone who thinks they'll hate Call of Duty plays it, enjoys it, presses two buttons and has bought it for $60, whereas they probably wouldn't have done otherwise. Few people would likely fill their family list and even people using the feature specifically for getting cheaper games will end up spending more, likely digitally, in the long run.

@Hicken

"It would have been completely counterintuitive for them to allow limitless use of one game to eleven people, when all the other things they were doing were such strong attempts to limit more than one person playing off a single copy of a game."

I don't think you understand the word counter-intuitive. Think for a moment. How is it counter-intuitive for them to say "we don't want you to do something in this way, but hey, here's what you can do instead."

People can't share their disks, they might not be able to trade it traditionally, there has to be something in place to balance that out and they knew it. Hence the digital licence trading and family share.

Unless you're going to just presume Microsoft hate you and want to steal your jerbs or whatever, it's perfectly reasonable to expect, nay demand something back on the loss on the ability to trade and share as you'd like. And since they're a company and not an evolution of the SS, it's fair to presume they have people in place to tell them where things need balancing.

Now whether that balancing included limiting certain features - multiplayer, achievements, DLC purchase - I wouldn't hazard a guess. It's still a great deal.

@THamm

"There is a catch 4 min in, he repeats "check it out"

The thing in that interview that should have been a flag was "it's not like you're buying one copy for all 10 members." You went with his obsession with the phrase check it out (when referencing a library, no less)? I'll pretend you made this hard for me...

Yeah, there's no good answer to the 10 members quote. It seems at odds with what they were saying in their official material, but then so did a lot of these off-the-cuff interviews. If there was one thing that made me doubt that this feature could have been as good as it sounded, it was that quote.

THamm1551d ago

By "check it out" I meant literally check it out for a set period of time, had he worded it as your son can play the "whole" game, I would have said wow. I took "check it out" as demonstration mode

matgrowcott1551d ago

So you've never heard someone say they're going to check something out of a linrary? Do you know how libraries work? I've never heard of a place ripping out the back 100 pages to get you to buy something.

I knew what you meant. You were wrong.

rainslacker1550d ago

@mat

Yeah, I don't believe used games hurt the industry as much as some claim. Your argument is only one of the reasons why.

But from a logical standpoint, if publishers do believe it's hurtful, or at the least want to profit off it, why would they cut into their sales by allowing a game to be shared with up to 10 people, particularly with the thinking that there is no restriction on how much of the game a 2nd person can use that game. It really is akin to allowing up to 10 people to play 1 purchased game, and is completely counter intuitive to the whole used game restriction.

A demo version makes sense though. It does what you suggest. It allows others that wouldn't normally try something try the full game. Their interest may peak, and they may buy the game. Win Win.

I'm not even sure why it would need to be a shared list thing, and if so why limit it to 10 people. Timed demos are already available on PS+

Anyhow, we'll likely never know all the details. It's a shame, because it was a really intriguing feature, and if implemented correctly, could be a huge plus in the adoption of DD.

+ Show (10) more repliesLast reply 1550d ago
DEEBO1552d ago

we do now,the MS employee told us how it work.just look at the article deathofsouls got.it was posted on N4G but got pulled for some mysterious reason.but he laid it out right there in black&white. family gaming sharing=hour long demo.

KrisButtar1552d ago

It was a good feature whether you would use it or not, bummer its gone.

DEEBO1552d ago

no it wasn't.you can only play the game for hour then you have to buy it.half the truth,MS employee let the cat out the bag. lol
game sharing=hour long demo

GiggMan1552d ago (Edited 1552d ago )

Yeah I read that too. Don't know if it was true or not but it was basically like the PS+ full game trial feature. Basically you were sharing a full game in a 15-60 minute demo mode and afterwards you will be redirected to the xbox store for purchase.

That's not my definition of sharing if that was true.

DeathofSouls1552d ago (Edited 1552d ago )

It was not a good feature, this is from a microsoft employee at 4 am the morning after the 180 on a blog.

"Heartbroken Xbox One employee lets rip"
"First is family sharing, this feature is near and dear to me and I truly felt it would have helped the industry grow and make both gamers and developers happy. The premise is simple and elegant, when you buy your games for Xbox One, you can set any of them to be part of your shared library. Anyone who you deem to be family had access to these games regardless of where they are in the world. There was never any catch to that, they didn’t have to share the same billing address or physical address it could be anyone. When your family member accesses any of your games, they’re placed into a special demo mode. This demo mode in most cases would be the full game with a 15-45 minute timer and in some cases an hour."

Source
http://www.heyuguysgaming.c...

Lovable1552d ago

LOL WUT!? Is this a credible source?

Assuming it is, oh man MS didn't put the full details about it and we see the reason why.

matgrowcott1552d ago

It's not at all credible. It was an anonymous thing left on pastebin.

Dead_Cell1552d ago

Oh man, that is just.....bad. Awful, awful idea. What makes it a slap to the face is that Microsoft actually thinks this would have been a selling point.

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