Multiplayer for the Masses: The Legacy of XBOX LIVE

Microsoft changed the gaming landscape with XBOX LIVE, and MP1st talks about the how, the why, and what moments changed gaming forever with online gaming.

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SullysCigar351d ago

Perhaps, but Microsoft also changed the gaming landscape by locking online multiplayer behind a paywall, which is arguably it's biggest legacy.

Magog350d ago (Edited 350d ago )

Yeah not really a thrilling addition to the gaming world. Even Nintendo has the balls now to pay for their ridiculously limited online service. Let's not forget that Dreamcast shipped with a modem as well and their online service was free.

darthv72350d ago

Sega Net wasnt free... it was $20 mo.

porkChop350d ago

I certainly don't like paying for online multiplayer. I shouldn't have to pay extra to access part of a game I've already paid for.

I can't deny the impact that XBL has had though.

CaptainHenry916350d ago

One of the reasons (not the major) I went to PC gaming. I'm glad I don't have to pay for online multi-player

Terry_B350d ago

That + they made DLC a standard business technique. Sometimes great...often feeling like something was just removed from a base game or was an unlockable extra in past games (unlockable characters, costumes, etc.) Thanks to MS..the industry became worse.

porkChop350d ago

How did they make DLC standard? At the time DLC started taking off Microsoft wasn't even doing piecemeal DLC. They were doing map packs and expansions.

Michiel1989350d ago

thats nonsense, might as well say that the people who bought the fing horse armor are the ones responsible for normalizing trashy mtx then.

ApocalypseShadow350d ago (Edited 350d ago )

Correct Terry. Porkchop wants to ignore the fact that Microsoft was the lead platform by jumping out early with the endemic, RROD system that just so happens to have supported DVD. Where games had to have cut content sold to gamers later because it wouldn't fit on old technology for a new system. And Microsoft discouraged multiple DVD discs. And Microsoft's digital game sizes were limited by Microsoft at that time. Which changed game development or content sold later. And developers took advantage of that and sold pieces. Companies like Valve and Epic couldn't even give away free content as Microsoft demanded DLC have a price which was shady.

With Blu-ray, a larger sized medium for a new generation console, you could put all the content on a disc. You could fit all GTA 4 and its DLC on one disc. Not on Xbox. Just like Sony upped the size from PS1 to PS2 with CD to DVD. They upped the size on PS3 because it made sense.

Not only that, but if one were counting yearly payments to Microsoft excluding looking for discounts, that was 10 years at $50-$60 dollars. The price of a second console or multiple games. You would think that Microsoft paid a billion to fix RROD. No. Gamers paid Microsoft over 10 years for online that paid for those broken systems.

And, even though gamers like myself said that Xbox fans shouldn't pay for online because it would lead the industry in having EVERYBODY pay for online, they ignored us claiming that paying for it was better than Sony's 10 years and counting, free online for PS3 that had dedicated servers for top games and P2P as well for others.

Their mindset almost took away our ownership of games with DRM 2013. Thank Sony and its gamers for that. But now, they don't even want to buy games and think games should be on a cheap $1-10 dollar subscription that will bite all of us in the ass, gamers and developers, if that sticks.

porkChop350d ago


That's a lot of delusion and reaching for one post. You deserve an award.

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annoyedgamer350d ago

Definitely. And I decided to stop paying for it.

ColtPSSX350d ago (Edited 350d ago )

Lol at the disagrees.

It’s true they moved it forward but they also added paywall which sucks.
Also those crappy DLC, like the infamous Oblivion horses lol

343_Guilty_Spark350d ago

You honestly think that free multiplayer on consoles would be sustainable and neither Sony or Nintendo would seek to monetize their very large user base beyond games? You sound very delusional.

Jin_Sakai350d ago

“Perhaps, but Microsoft also changed the gaming landscape by locking online multiplayer behind a paywall“

Yea because if they didn’t do it no one else would’ve. It was going to happen regardless of who did it first.

theindiearmy350d ago (Edited 350d ago )

True story that for some reason many people seem to want to forget...back before Games for Windows Live was a thing, many individual publishers were looking to charge a subscription for their games. WoW had come out a couple years later and Activision was looking to move Call of Duty to a subscription model also. EA was looking into the same for Battlefield. Mind you, this was all on PC only, because Microsoft was already handling it all on Xbox. So when Microsoft caught wind of this they asked them to hold off on those plans and started working on Games for Windows Live and pitched to the publishers to just use their platform for things like matchmaking, friends, parties, etc. instead. Keep in mind that Steam at the time was still very small and primarily still just a launcher/store. At the time it only had about 150 games for sale on the platform. So when Valve caught wind of what was going on they took it a step further — partly as hatred for MS at the time, and partly as a marketing strategy to further popularize Steam — started working on integrating similar features into Steam. Of course providing them to the users for free. Part of the marketing aspect was a large Valve vs MS campaign making MS out to look like the bad guys for charging. When in reality, MS was motivated to keep a trend of a subscription model per game forming.

So while MS did introduce a paywall, it played a pivotal role in keeping online multiplayer free on PC and kept from publishers implementing subscriptions for games beyond MMOs.


" it played a pivotal role in keeping online multiplayer free on PC and kept from publishers implementing subscriptions for games beyond MMOs. "

LOL that's just straight bs. They tried charging for multiplayer and failed on pc since there were better options that were free, pc players told ms to f off. Than MS basically abandoned pc gaming and blocked most of their xbox games from coming to pc until the xbox one flopped.

theindiearmy349d ago (Edited 349d ago )

It's not BS at all. You can thank MS for not having to pay $10-15 a month to play popular games.

1Victor349d ago (Edited 349d ago )

@jin funny when it come to get more money Microsoft is first but when it comes to move any industry they are on they’re last claiming it’s a unproven product/service/ feature 🤷🏿
@ the indie I don’t see any sources in there as far as I can remember I never heard of it


They probably got the idea from MS. MS tried to charge for online pc gaming. They failed. If it were up to them we would be paying subs for games.They tried charging for their msn zone when mplayer closed and tried charging for GFWL. Both of those were crap and there was better stuff available for free.

theindiearmy349d ago


I've been pretty clear about the order of history, so I'm not sure what you're not understanding. Publishers were looking into it just after WoW came out in 2004. Games for Windows Live didn't come until 2009. MS stopped publishers from all going to a sub per game model.

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frostypants349d ago (Edited 349d ago )

This. Long time PC gamers are LOLing at this piece. Thanks largely to Live, console gamers will forever have to pay monthly fees for online. The precedent it set is awful. And I love console gaming, but the online fees are a joke.

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Godmars290350d ago

The thing that probably shouldn't have happened to gaming. At least to the scale it was pushed.

Knightofelemia350d ago (Edited 350d ago )

Microsoft improve the online playing experience DLC is a great idea depending on the game if it's a shitty gun or skins for a weapon not worth it. But story DLC is worth it things I hate about online is crossplay with cheating PC players, lootboxes, and some only services need major work to play catch up such as Nintendo. Only other thing I hate is when a game has an achievement/trophy tied to online play and has to meet certain criteria to even pop. I wish I knew what Xband was at the time when I was a kid but the cost my parents first words would be nope cost too much.

TheDoomedGuy350d ago

Okayyy. I see. YOu must think only pc players can cheat in online multiplayer games. Funny.

I've found close to no cheaters while playing many years on PC. And yet I play 1 mp game on console and I see massive amounts of cheating.

Knightofelemia350d ago

Sure and GTA V on PC is a normal game with no cheaters or modders

TheDoomedGuy350d ago

I wouldn't know about GTA V as I haven't played it.

Only speaking from my personal experience...obviously. but to assume it only happens on one side is the definition of innocence've yet to experience things outside your bubble.

Knightofelemia349d ago (Edited 349d ago )

Your bubble seems small if you haven't played GTA V online seems like you need the experience. Let me know how it goes with the modders and cheaters on the pc side of GTA V. I have played GTA V on pc and depending on the modder if he is in a good mood he can be fun to be around or in a bad mood make your online experience a living hell. I have seen cheating in COD, Battlefield, L4D2, aim bots, lag switches, god mode. I have played games where the cheaters ruin the game and the experience of the game. I have played crossplatform multiplayer games both on Xbox and Playstation and yes the PC side in that mix has been cheating. But remain in your bubble and the certain games you like and pretend every game on PC you have played has no cheaters. And yes console can have cheaters but the rules on the console side are a lost more stricter since companies can band the box if need be.

TheDoomedGuy349d ago

Not a small bubble. Just more fine-tuned to unique experiences off the mainstream casual gamer. To each their own. If you like those casual games by all means use them as your compass of the typical gaming experience. I tend to look for much more variety. Played all other GTA's but wasn't all that interested in another iteration.

You're the one making a general statement on something that's just false....and I guess based one 1 game.

TheGreatGazoo30350d ago

People bashing them for charging for Xbox Live are forgetting something, Live worked great. Other consoles free live services were horrible. It was light years ahead of competition and it wasn't until they started to charge and build out their servers and infrastructure that they were even worth using.

TheDoomedGuy350d ago

Console games werent there yet regarding online multiplayer. It was still all about that co op experience.

On PC there was no such problems.

Fntastic350d ago

Yea but generally PC had online multi way before consoles, I know SEGA had that online service for a short while for 16 bit but it wasn't going for long and it wasn't worldwide.

Like in the 90's and early 2000's before Steam and HL2: DM came along we had to rely on multiplayer services built into the game. Or use Mplayer or Gamespy and Wireplay, they were interesting too.. They were kind of like the Worms 2 online multiplayer interface but for all games.

MrChow666350d ago

Exactly, ps3 was free but the quality and interface was terrible, playing online on the 360 was a great experience.

350d ago
TheDoomedGuy350d ago

It wasn't terrible. At that time it was perfectly normal and Xbox live wasn't really much better.

I played on both and both were similar experiences.

1Victor349d ago

Dude Xbox 360 you pay to host the game p2p PS3 had DEDICATED SERVERS for all their games and some games like Warhawk gave you the option to use your PS3 as a server ( )just scroll down to the end of the article and you’ll see the game servers room something that not even your beloved Halo has before or Microsoft had ever shown

tagzskie350d ago

yeah but as long as can i play online without lag just like ps3 days and free, i rather have that compare to paid online service with lots of features. Or i just wish that we have option that we can play online for free minus the great features ala xmb etc etc.. Even to these days i refuse to pay for pay to play online thingy. People are different and some have different circumstances so i like to have that kind of options

John_McClane350d ago

It's still light years ahead of the competition.

350d ago
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TheDoomedGuy350d ago (Edited 350d ago )

I was playing online before microsoft made us pay for it. And I still only play online where its free.

Dont forget that they also made the biggest change in the industry regarding exclusivity deals the tomb raider exclusivity fiasco.

Imalwaysright350d ago

Funny that you mentioned TR considering the Sony paid for the exclusivity of the IP in the PS1 days

TheDoomedGuy349d ago

So it had nothing to do with the capability of one console over the other? The Sega Saturn was going to be able to run the game the same way?

Gamer79350d ago (Edited 350d ago )

That's funny because it was Sony who paid to keep the tomb raider sequals off the Sega saturn, as well as numerous other games. Looks like it was Sony that changed the industry regarding exclusivity

TheDoomedGuy349d ago (Edited 349d ago )

Yeah they definitely did move things forward with the CD ROM. Which the game clearly took advantage of...seeing as it wasn't possible with the other console at the time.....sure let's pretend it's the same exact thing.

Gamer79349d ago (Edited 349d ago )

You're reply makes no sense, what has that got to do with Sony paying for exclusivity for tomb raider on ps1. The original tomb raider was a timed exclusive on Sega saturn, then the sequals become ps1 exclusives after Sony paid for exclusivity.

Imalwaysright349d ago (Edited 349d ago )

If that was the case a deal didn't need to be made would it? Money wouldn't have to change hands would it? Hell even if it turned out that the Sega Saturn couldn't run TR2 it would be absolutely irrelevant as Sony was making exclusive deals prior to MS entering the console market so what MS did was to take a page right out of Sony's handbook but just to make things perfectly clear for you

"In April 2020, co-creator of Tomb Raider Paul Douglas confirmed that a Saturn version of Tomb Raider II was in development until the Sony exclusivity deal forced to cancel it."

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