What is the problem here, exactly? PC games are already like this, and they have been for a long, long time. Thanks to Steam, nobody cares, because:
- The games are cheaper (generally - ActiBlizzard and EA still suck for pricing most days, but Far Cry 3 for example launched at $49 and went down to $29 for a while - Entire publisher catalogues are often available during holiday sales for the price of a single new release)
- It's easy to use
- Games generally go on sale or otherwise get "used-game" pricing anyway
- You get to keep all the games you buy
- No trip to the store
- You don't get shafted by a $5 trade-in credit on a game that gets resold at $30 by companies whose sole reason to exist is to sell used games at 400% profit margins or higher
- Less e-waste
- Downloads are absurdly fast - As fast as your internet can nom, the games are nommed
- Log into your account on another computer, download the game, and play at a friend's house - No discs, no "product key already registered"
That's not to say that Microsoft and/or Sony will get it right. But frankly, people are overreacting. Seriously. It's not that bad. Plus, all the money you used to spend on used games that are now going to lower-priced new games? Straight to the developers. Unlike a used game, which is purchased once at retail, the developer gets a single cut, and then the game gets passed around and used and abused a dozen or so times. Like it or not, that hurts developers, and that's the number one reason why this kind of thing will happen if it does. On the PC, it was piracy. Quite frankly, since Steam, I can't remember the last time I pirated a game, and I've since purchased pretty much all of the games I've ever pirated.
Then again, Steam is a part of the PC master race, and it has to be awesome. Who knows what the MSFT and Sony equivalents would look like... Current digital download services seem to favour full retail pricing. Let's hope that trend doesn't continue.
PC/Steam is nothing like what they are talking about.
You only have to be online to download the games, and in alot of cases games can be purchased inna physical copy and installed many times.
Also, wtf happened to the "This" button? That was nice.