The days of owning games are coming to an end

This has been coming for a while.

Oculus Quest Giveaway! Click Here to Enter
The story is too old to be commented.
Mikelarry1938d ago

It will only happen if we let it. I do t mind digital but it has to make sense, there has to be more advantages than what is currently on offer.

Publishers and game devs are quick to say digital is the future and for all consumers to welcome it with open arms but they don't want to offer the us the flexibilities that comes with going digital by still using old businesses practice's that came with owing a physical copy.

Digital will happen but with the greed currently plagui g the industry it will ta!e a very long time before digital becomes second nature to consumers.

Mikelarry1938d ago

I also find it funny that the games industry is the only one going the way of subscriptions or nothing. the films industry is twice as big and they somehow still allow digital and physical to coexist in harmony. I say this, the day gaming becomes all subscriptions is the day I give up this hobby and find some new hobby... always been interested in golf

Zjet1937d ago


Film industry happily offers Digital Downloads with physical copies and both release.

There will always be advantages to physical media, i for one will always buy a physical version of a game, i will quite happily embrace digital for Virtual Console and Classic titles like buying PSP games digitally for use on the Vita as it has advantages, or PS1 games for use on my PSP/PS3 etc etc

MelvinTheGreat1937d ago

Looks like you are gonna be golfing soon...

Mikelarry1937d ago (Edited 1937d ago )

@ Melvin

I know right.but maybe not for another 5 years due to the fact of the current internet infrastructure and the cost of high speed internet. The publishers would be foolish to go all digital because there are still major cities with piss poor net speed which would greatly affect their adoption of all digital, until this is addressed I still got time. Sad it has come to me wanting to delay progress to be able to claim some sort of ownership for the games I purchase

jc485731937d ago

I'm doing Table Tennis at the moment, but I always wanted to try Tennis.

VegasDawg1937d ago (Edited 1937d ago )

Ummmm, your wrong gaming is now bigger than the movies with games like GTA being the biggest entertainment franchise in the entire world and that's just one game. Welcome to 2014.

You will be giving up gaming because digital is here to stay. I don't understand your guy's phobia on this. Think about this, all manufacturing blue ray will be gone, the middle man will be gone(gamestop), thieves will have to be a lot smarter to steal these games because it WILL be DRM. What does this mean? The cost of making games will go down considerable and as long as there is competition it will have to be passed on to the consumer and I'm sure some of it will be put in to make better games. Now what part of this don't you like?

You like the current system where you have to pay thieves and gamestop so you can put a disc in?

Remember when people were still using horse drawn carriages they were afraid of cars and look how that turned out, it's time to let go and let what will happen be.

Mikelarry1937d ago

@ vegasdawg

i said " I say this, the day gaming becomes all subscriptions is the day I give up this hobby "

i dont understand how you got "You will be giving up gaming because digital is here to stay" from the above.

digital does not always have to be subscription, i am more against subscription gaming, this might be your preference but please understand not everyone likes subscription gaming or can afford to keep paying for subscriptions.

also currently we do have digital copies in place and no middle man but where are the saving being passed to consumers huh??

these big publishers say things like " oh they don't want to mess up the relationship they have with retailers" but its ok to mess up the relationship they have with consumers by charging the same or more than the hard copy i really don't understand this logic but fair enough.

also you see the hacking that some of you think is a nuisance now, just wait till it goes all digital and someone hacks your account stealing all your games or brings the servers down which stops you from accessing your games that you paid good money for weeks or even months while they try to release patches and all that.

don't let the above make you feel i am against digital this is not true i am against options/ choice. these publishers want to take away this from me by forcing me to subscribe to a service this i am against.

+ Show (3) more repliesLast reply 1937d ago
Insomnia_841937d ago (Edited 1937d ago )

"The days of owning games are coming to an end. And I mean buying a game in the traditional sense, where you go to a store, pick up a physical product, and can play that product on your hardware forever and ever, amen. "

This is what Microsoft attempted to do with Xbox One since the firt day they announced it. Convert our RETAIL COPIES into digital copies that they would control to their likings with all the DRM they had in place for the system and games alike.

"The price is relatively low. $30 a year gets you access to games, early access to content and a discount on new releases and DLC. If you're a fan of more than two or three EA franchises it's almost a no-brainer."

The "it's almost a no-brainer" cracks me up! More like "is for fans with no brain". The games EA will give you access to will be old games of your favorite franchises, meaning games you already played the years before, old iterations of the better new games you will most likely buy on release this year and the years to come. The "early access to content" is LIMITED acces a week before to new games, meaning DEMOS. 10% off to new games? I'd rather get a $10 gift card at BestBuy or any other retail stores, money a would spend on any other upcoming games and not limited to EA games only.

Like most people with a brain say, there has to be a catch, and the catch is hidden in this little details.

"But let's be clear, this is a shift of power from the buyer to EA."

Again, this is exactly what Microsoft wanted to do, a shift of power from the buyer to the Corporation. Now we have EA teaming up with Microsoft to pull this off. Something to think about right there.

"This is the way forward; the way of the future. Your kids won't mind that they don't own their games, they won't know any other reality."

This are the same kids asking for a subscription model for Playstation Now. This are the ppl who have no clue of how a subscription model would work for a GAMES streaming service, expecting cheaper prices, expecti things Sony to place brand new games into that subscription and things like that. Very naive ppl if you ask me.

The scary thing about this is the love relationship between Microsoft and EA with this for the reasons I already mentioned.

When Sony says EA Access isn't a good value for the gamers, you better sit down and think about it. We are talking about two of the worst and most hated companies teaming up to try and execute a service plan, so think about it, analyze it, and you will see where the catch is and this article is a good example.

This is why I buy all my games from retail and not digital. The only digital games I have are the PSN only small games and the free games I get with PS+. And with Playstation Now letting me rent games, I'm set for a great gen of gaming buying my favorite games from retail and renting the ones that kind of interest me but not enough to warrant my full purchase.

If anything, this article shows Playstation Now is a better option that EA Access and now you can understand why they turned it down.

1937d ago
Palitera1937d ago

So people are naive for believing that the service offering one year old games in local play will keep doing so, but somehow you the genious think that a more expensive service offering MUCH older content through REMOTE play will completely turn around? Talk about naive "kids", to use your words.

Yes, you're really a great genious.

And get you facts straight. "EA Access offers games that people played years before already". The games aren't even one year old.

Seriously, are you trolling again? You can't be this dumb.

mrpsychoticstalker1936d ago

So then keep buying retail and let the rest of the gamers embrace the digital future.

COme out of the caves man, embrace the future. Is time to live and the modern world not prehistoric.

EA Access is a great deal. Most gamers know this. I'm sure Sony will soon agree and embrace it as well.

Godmars2901937d ago

"It will only happen if we let it."

You mean like DLC, iOS and a total lack of story writers in games?

700p1937d ago

Some DLC is worth buying tbh.

Palitera1937d ago

It's the only part of his post that I don't really agree.

It will happen if they decide it will and approach it the right way.

MS tried with a turd in their PR front. Put someone charismatic and smart there and everybody will swallow it the same way everyone swallows ANYTHING in this industry.

We "not letting" something happen is an illusion. MS lost the first round, but the change is coming, it is pretty clear. We suck and will keep sucking.

rainslacker1936d ago (Edited 1936d ago )

Unfortunately there are more people that are willing to give up their dollars for convenience.

If one were to truly sit down and work out how much they spend on digital content of similarly priced new releases vs the value of that content over a set time frame, they would quickly realize that in the case of consoles, you are spending way more on games in digital form.

Take EA Access for instance. Putting aside the $30 subscription fee, lets say you use it only for the 10% discount. $60 for retail copy(excluding taxes). $54 for digital copy. User saves $6-10 depending on taxes. Awesome right?

A month goes by and all of a sudden you find yourself not playing that game anymore, but the next Mass Effect is coming out in a week. One is a bit short on cash. One says, hmm...I have this recently released EA game sitting on a shelf. Goes and sells the game for $20-30(possibly more depending on the resale avenue taken), and now has enough money to buy Mass Effect. But the one that brought it digitally still can't get the game.

When you compare the value proposal of each alternative, you actually "saved" 33-50% in my example, and saved 10% with EA's plan(excluding subscription fees). To me it's a no-brainer.

For others, like me, I'm a collector. Almost every retro game I have is worth more than it can be brought for on digital services. The resale value of the same title offered digitally is zero(subject to change thanks to EU laws). If I could sell my entire physical collection tomorrow, I could conservatively pull in $10-12 thousand. If I had(and it was available) the exact same collection digitally, I may be able to MAYBE sell my entire account for $500, but not actually have the legal right to do so due to terms of service agreements.

Vegamyster1937d ago

Steam is currently the only digital service that i don't have any issues with, games are continuously on sale, community/forums, chat, achievements, Steamworks (mod support), offline mode, User/Critic reviews on store pages ect all built in and it's free of charge, GoG Galaxy looks like it will be good too.

Godmars2901937d ago

And nothing you bought on it you own. Even with Valve, a switch can be flipped, your PC dies and you need to re-install games into your new PC - only you can't.

Vegamyster1937d ago (Edited 1937d ago )


All games are Steam can be backed-up on a HDD and like i said previously there is an offline mode.

EULA for several different gaming companies.


"All title, ownership rights and intellectual property rights in and to this Program and any and all copies thereof are owned by Activision or its licensors.


Sell, rent, lease, license, distribute or otherwise transfer this Program, or any copies of this Program, without the express prior written consent of Activision."



"SEGA does not recognize the transfer of the Game Software. Therefore, you may not give, purchase, sell, bargain, barter, market, trade, offer for sale, sell, license, assign or otherwise divest your rights"

Namco Bandai: http://www.bandainamcogames...

"LIMITED USE LICENSE. BANDAI NAMCO grants you the non-exclusive, non-transferable, revocable, limited right and license use one copy of the Game solely for your personal use the Hardware."

OWNERSHIP. You may not do any of the following:

Copy the Game except a single backup copy; Sell, rent, lease, license, distribute or otherwise transfer or make the Game available to any other person"

I didn't post the full thing obviously but you should get the idea, technically even if you have the physically copy of a game you don't you own it, just the right to play it.

CaptainCamper1937d ago

Vega went HAM! Well said mate :D

Legend1937d ago

Exactly Vega. I'd venture a guess that most people here never bother to read their licensing agreements though, or even know what an end user is.

Godmars2901937d ago

How are you reading those statements and not concluding that the companies are expressing ownership of anything they offer?

You buy something from them, they retain ownership of it. They can even challenge a single backup copy if they so wanted. You put the game on one PC, sell or lose that PC and put the game on another, and they can come after you if they detect the program.

What all those statements boil down to is that you have less rights than they do. That where you can sell a car furniture or a DVD, give them away, that you can't do that with a game.

+ Show (2) more repliesLast reply 1937d ago
CaptainCamper1937d ago

Personally, I would love to see similar to what Sky does (or one of the TV companies anyway). You can buy a DVD for $XX. The digital version is available immediately and the boxed version is shipped out asap.

The biggest problem with digital purchases right now? Pricing.

Why are games often $15-25 more expensive on digital? Why do old games go for $10 at a trade-in store yet still sell for $30-35 on Xbox Live / PSN?

It's stoopid! :D

VegasDawg1937d ago (Edited 1937d ago )

I'm not here to upset you, but your a bit delusional digital is already happening. Everybody whined and cried when MS came out with their original plan but they were actually ahead of the curve.

Sony and MS will have the polices soon, DRM, no used games, even though you will be able to share your games with friends, personally I think that's a better deal free is always good. It's coming with a full head of steam and it will be good for gaming.It's not really the gaming companies fault it's the rampant stealing of games along with brick and mortar stores driving up the price(gamestop) and gaming companies going out of business left and right. The current system is unsustainable
When digital and DRM are in full effect prices will go down, along as there is competition, all these Sony fanBOYs praising SONY's dominance our fools and they are going to pay with their wallet.

People are afraid of change any change, but this is a good one with the only downfall being you can't have a physical disc and the game is over after the servers go down. But it's a proven fact that MOST people do not want to play old games, here's some proof for you to think about: Why does every gaming company abandon backward compatibility? Only a small part of the community even uses is it along with the need to push new games to keep the profits rolling in or they go out of business, simple as that.

The only way to stop digital gaming is to stop playing games RIGHT NOW and that's not going to happen.

Mikelarry1937d ago (Edited 1937d ago )

At least try to understand my comment. I never said I was against digital or that digital was not already happening.

You forgot to mention that digital cost more than physical a very big road block that and the fact that a lot of people internet are not up to par even in countries like the US and UK.

Digital is here to stay no one is denying that but it will be a long way before it comes the norm that is until the above points I mentioned are addressed

rainslacker1936d ago (Edited 1936d ago )

Please stop with the "people are afraid of change" argument. I'm not afraid of an all digital future. I don't like the thought of an all digital future. There is a big difference.

I like to own what I spend money on. Digital to me just isn't a good value proposition for the consumers, so I am not going to support it the way you are. If and when that changes, I will change how I feel about digital content. However, publishers aren't giving me the vibe that they care one iota about that people like the system for purchasing games that is already in place, and instead simply want to control everything to maximize their profits.

I don't need to stop playing right now, because retail is still available. The only way to stop it is to continue purchasing retail games and hope enough others continue to do so. If and when digital only happens, and if it is in the same sad state of draconian DRM measures to strip away all ownership from the consumer, I will stop buying new games, or at least only support the companies and console makers who still offer that option.

Many proved that with the X1 that retail still has a place, as it was truly an attack on the current models of retail ownership of games. So it's now on the publishers to make the almighty all digital future into something enticing for those who actually spend money on their products. The author of this article even posits that EA Access is a back door into making that happen, which is probably EA's overall goal, but IMO poorly implemented to that end.

Digital is in the future, but it isn't the only future. It may well be one day, but I think that day is further off than some people would like to believe.

For the life of me, I really can't understand why digital only supporters care if retail exists. Retail supporters don't go around calling for the death of digital sales. Why not just accept that others like things differently, for their own reasons, and it has nothing to do with fear.

@3-4-5 below.
This actually was a decent article. Not the best writing or research in it, but it makes some valid points, and isn't what I would consider a click-bait article. It is actually more of a warning article than a "Deal with it" article. The title though is click-bait worthy.

3-4-51937d ago

o wow....should have guess it was hitagon trash.

They used to have some decent articles.

rainslacker1936d ago

The author used EA Access as a jumping point to make his arguments, but I actually find his argument to be spot on. Same happened with Cliffy B a while back. He said it was inevitable and nothing we do will stop it. As much as I hated it, I didn't disagree, because it is what publishers want. His delivery of that message was really condescending, but I digress.

On the bright side, it is going to be a while, and there is nothing to say that more and more people will realize how they own nothing through these services. One big catastrophe that truly highlights millions of people losing billions dollars worth of purchased content could slam people's eyes wide open that convenience =/= value.

I said a while back, imagine if Apple servers just stopped. Billions of dollars of purchased content lost. It would set back digital distribution for years as people lose everything. It's not likely to happen of course, but just imagine.

However, a more reasonable scenario, one day Apple may dwindle into irrelevance, and all those iTunes purchases will be meaningless if Apple doesn't keep up with whatever is the next big thing. Same effect as them just shutting down. The big difference though is that in the past, when the medium for delivery of the content became obsolete or irrelevant, it was still usable.

Games for Windows could have had this affect. It shut itself down and people no longer had access to their content. Lost forever unless they take steps to secure their unlocked purchases before servers shut down. However, no one cared about GFW, so it didn't really make a dent, and was even applauded that it was being shut down despite the people that it affected. I can't imagine how all the people who are so much for a digital future are simply OK with people just losing their purchased content like that.

On a more personal note, I have a full version of Visual Studio professional that I purchased 4 years ago. It works perfectly fine for my needs. However, the servers, run by MS, that held my licence key are no longer available. MS won't give me a new key despite working with their customer service to obtain a "legal" one. If I had brought the product in physical form, it wouldn't be a problem...unless I lost the box. Had a free version of Windows Vista from that same service, but don't care much about that, but same thing there.

In the end, if enough people continue to purchase retail games, retail games will continue to exist. If consoles eventually don't offer the retail option, then the market will decide if it's feasible to go all digital. Past performance will not dictate future results on this issue either. MS X1 DRM stuff, or PSPGo's failure, will not mean much when that time finally comes. What will matter is if publishers will lose more money by cutting out retail altogether, or if they're confident that the profit margins will increase to insure they make just as much or more.

Personally, I won't spend as much as I do on games if I don't own them. As much as I love games, I love having ownership of the things that I purchase, so I will always be for retail, and find digital a nice place for occasional purchases for smaller things that don't cost too much.

+ Show (5) more repliesLast reply 1936d ago
DigitalRaptor1937d ago (Edited 1937d ago )

Polygon and the warped sense of reality needs to find itself under a bus.

We've heard this all before. We've heard it about books, about DVDs, about music. The reality is that people prefer tangible goods when it comes down to it. What happens at holiday season or birthdays when your present is no longer a big package but an envelope that you open with a voucher to download Halo 7 or Uncharted 5? Who gets excited for a present that is a download voucher? Who doesn't relish the excitement of opening shrink-wrapped goods?

Look at the double-play and triple-play packages you get with modern Blu-ray disc purchases? Who would rather pay $20 for a digital file, than $25 for a physical package that offers digital and THEN SOME that is yours forever?


- Microsoft tried to do this at the start of the gen, and gamers rallied against it cause they wanted ownership.
- Digital games are overpriced and that isn't changing due to publishers who are out of touch with consumers.
- The demand for physical games is strong enough for its to continue, and so it will, like all other entertainment mediums.
- Hard drive space limits and sub-par download speeds don't support it.

Physical is going nowhere, we are just being offered more options for content distribution which I welcome. But still, having the box, the manual, the artwork and disc - that is 50% of the value and personal worth of the product right there. I can't willingly spend $60 on a bunch of licensed digital files for a single game, and have that be of any worth to me as a gamer.

Majin-vegeta1938d ago

Well then looks like my days of gaming are being numbered.

Imalwaysright1937d ago

Just you wait and see how much it will cost you to play one measly game when publishers have all the power to do whathever they want. You might as well start taking acting lessons to play the role of Quasimodo because that's how your back will look like after bending over to them greedy publishers over and over again.

1937d ago
rainslacker1936d ago


What you refer to is called, "What the market will bare". Basically it's the maximum price point at which people will purchase a product and allow that product to remain profitable...along with some other complicated economics stuff thrown in.

And you're right, game prices can't go past a certain point before people just ignore it, or likely raise too big a fuss.

But what we've seen so far is that digital content is priced higher for much longer compared to it's retail counterparts. Basically a game is priced higher longer.

There are two reasons for this.

1. Publishers are completely out of touch with how much their game is worth in the market at any given time. Square Enix is especially guilty of this.

2. Retail stores have to move inventory, so they compete for the customers dollars. In a closed console space however, there is no reason to compete, as it's the only outlet, so they can maximize revenue.

This is what Imalwaysright is referring to. Those times when you can pick up a game at a great price because retailers compete are limited to when a title becomes much older, whereas in the retail environment, older games generally follow the same market trend among different retailers.

kingdip901937d ago

I agree somewhat. My days of buying new systems and current games will come to an end should this happen but I still have a massive backlog of old ps2 and 3 games on my to do list. I will happily linger on last gen to avoid the digital switch.

Rainbowcookie1938d ago

Best of both worlds would be better. There are a lot of people with very slow or expensive internet so it would suck. If you cannot own anything it would destroy video game collections where people actually pay top dollar for certain releases.

FireProChamp1937d ago (Edited 1937d ago )

Buy physical and we all win. Games sold in stores = jobs + game ownership. I can't imagine having a console without a bunch of game cases lined up next to it.

LOGICWINS1937d ago

I'd rather buy digital.

Don't have to leave the house.

Don't have to worry about finding space for stacks of game cases.

Don't have to get up every time to change the disc.

kingdip901937d ago

I am old fashioned myself, there is something about driving home after picking a game up and having the game looking at you, begging you to tear open that plastic and put the game in the system. It's a part of the experience.

That aside though a digital distribution centered industry has mad it way easier for indie developers to release their product and unless the big developers somehow prevent the indies from using these platforms as they have it may very well be the indies who innovate and drive gaming.

I remember on the old Sinclair spectrum days when you would buy magazines with games from indie developers on cassette tapes stuck to the cover (this is how rare got their start before they were actually called rare) and it was a time of huge evolutions in gaming concepts.

The big AAA studios with their unwillingness to invest in innovative and new gameplay may very well get shut out of the hearts of gamers because of the drive for all digital media. The indies will keep making new, fresh, inventive games and they will always beat out tired, tried and tested games.

LOGICWINS1937d ago

Interesting points. I personally love digital/cloud based distribution. Between work, family, friends, dating, planning for my future etc., I don't have as much time to play games as I used too. Most of the time, I'm not even in the mood to play anything due to being busy with something else or simply being tired from a rough week.

So when Im actually in the mood and have the time to play a game, I want to get to it as soon as possible before I lose the urge to play or become busy with something else. This is why DD is so great. I dnt have to wait days for my game to arrive from Amazon. I can get to my game with just a few clicks.

LOGICWINS1937d ago

I also love the fact that Sony has a record that I bought the game. If my disc gets stolen, scratched, or stuck in my broken console, I can just re-download it off of PSN assuming I have a digital copy.

The only huge downside I see with digital purchases is that I can't trade them in if the game sucks. Fortunately, Shadowfall is the only game this gen that I've had this issue with.

x_RadicalAura_x1937d ago

Don't get "ownership" of a damned thing.

LOGICWINS1937d ago (Edited 1937d ago )

^^I don't need physical "ownership" of a game. This isn't like buying a car or house. I don't plan on playing TLOU Remastered or Resogun when Im in my 30s because by then I'll have moved to significantly more awesome games.

Even if every digital game purchase issued a disclaimer that said "digital download expires in July 2020", I wouldnt care....because by then I would have already moved on.

When it gets to the point where I pay $60 to rent a game for only a few months, then I'll start bitching.

@kingdip90- I see the benefits of nostalgia, but even when I get the itch to play an old game in 7 or 8 years, I don't plan on my PS4 to be working. Even if I were to horde physical copies of games I wouldnt have a console to play them on.

Instead of spending a crapload of money on Estarland to rebuy old consoles/games to fulfill my rare nostalgic desires, I'd rather just buy new consoles/games that look and play better.

kingdip901937d ago

@ logicwins

I am in my 30's and back in the day I used to believe similarly to how you do, but now I find myself going back to the old games and having more fun with them than the newer ones. I can't tell you how good it feels to pop in my old copy of mario bro's 3.

Nostalgia is a powerful thing but the big devs don't like people playing games they are not making money off.

TheSaint1937d ago

None of those reasons are valid (unless you physically can't leave the house of course).

Getting up to change the disc takes seconds.

It's good to go out once in a while.

You don't need that much space, unless you collect and keep every game you buy, but you've already said (in another comment) that you're not interested in nostalgia.

I usually agree with what you say on here but not this time.

Spotie1937d ago

Those are some weak ass reasons, logic.

You say you don't need ownership, but will you feel that way when and if publishers decide to end your use of a given game at their whim? It could be days after your purchase, and it wouldn't matter, because they can do that.

What good is all your convenience then?

1937d ago
+ Show (6) more repliesLast reply 1937d ago