Are people finally warming to digital distribution?

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Frank Chickens
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Re: Are people finally warming to digital distribution?

Post by Frank Chickens » Fri Dec 24, 2010 7:21 am

Also, what happens when they turn the server off and you won't be able to access your paid downloads anymore? Let's hope that you have them backed up just to be safe.
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Re: Are people finally warming to digital distribution?

Post by Antiriad2097 » Fri Dec 24, 2010 7:30 am

Frank Chickens wrote:Also, what happens when they turn the server off and you won't be able to access your paid downloads anymore?
We download the cracked versions and play them via emulation, same as we do with all the cabs we've been cut off from.
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Freestyler
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Re: Are people finally warming to digital distribution?

Post by Freestyler » Fri Dec 24, 2010 7:46 am

I'm ambivalent towards a purely "Digital Download" future. Why?

Well, the whole Industry is about making money. No surprises there I know, but some Publishers are using Digital Download to basically rip off their customers. £39.99 for a store-bought game (along with Manual, Box, physical media, inserts, Maps, etc) or £39.99 for a "Digital Download" that's basically a bit of pipelined code.

Complete and utter rip off, especially when you consider the store-bought £39.99 game is usually very heavily discounted within the first week of sale.

Digital Downloading is great on the one hand (Steam, I eagerly salute you for services rendered to Humankind) but lately even the mighty Steam service is being inundated with the same rip-off £39.99 Digi-download bullshit. At least Steam heavily discounts their game selections, and often has some truly superb bundled offers. That's it's saving grace.

Console Digital Download is a bit trickier for me, since there very definitely WILL be a time when it will be switched off. It might be another 5 years, or even 10, but - like the original Xbox Live - it will come to an end. Barring hardware failure I can play any SNES games I own until the very end of time itself, but once Microsoft decides to turn off its service I'm screwed. Just like I was when they turned off the old Xbox Live service and stopped me from playing Multiplayer Halo 2 on it through my Xbox 360.

It's not a criticism of Microsoft for turning it off. Hell, they couldn't run it forever, but to me it was a very definite foreshadowing of a possible future. A future where anything I bought but didn't physically own could be taken from me at less than a moments notice.

Spending a couple of pence on Indie games is ok, since losing a quid is nowt really. But buying loads of Forty Quid games that turn themselves off after 10 years is a future I don't want to be a part of.
Last edited by Freestyler on Fri Dec 24, 2010 7:51 am, edited 1 time in total.
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QuantumCrayons
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Re: Are people finally warming to digital distribution?

Post by QuantumCrayons » Fri Dec 24, 2010 7:48 am

I'm pretty sure that a lot of you guys who are against digital distribution were quite happy in your youth to go to the local arcade and pop some of your pocket money in for a game that you didn't even own the right to play after that ran out. What changed? That wasn't a case of "when the service dies, I can no longer play" it was "when I play badly at the game, I can no longer play". To me, that's even worse.

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Re: Are people finally warming to digital distribution?

Post by Rayne » Fri Dec 24, 2010 7:53 am

QuantumCrayons wrote:I'm pretty sure that a lot of you guys who are against digital distribution were quite happy in your youth to go to the local arcade and pop some of your pocket money in for a game that you didn't even own the right to play after that ran out. What changed? That wasn't a case of "when the service dies, I can no longer play" it was "when I play badly at the game, I can no longer play". To me, that's even worse.
that's actually a pretty good point :lol:
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Freestyler
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Re: Are people finally warming to digital distribution?

Post by Freestyler » Fri Dec 24, 2010 7:57 am

QuantumCrayons wrote:I'm pretty sure that a lot of you guys who are against digital distribution were quite happy in your youth to go to the local arcade and pop some of your pocket money in for a game that you didn't even own the right to play after that ran out. What changed? That wasn't a case of "when the service dies, I can no longer play" it was "when I play badly at the game, I can no longer play". To me, that's even worse.
The difference is that a 10p arcade machine is a world of difference from a £40 game. That's literally 400 goes! :lol:

I never played the Arcades once they started the "£1 a go" rubbish, since saving up for the game made much better financial sense anyway. Plus at that time the console ports were a perfectly acceptable compromise. Ridge Racer on PS1 was even better than the arcade version, so money well saved! :D


Economies of scale. £1 is nothing these days, neither is 59p. Just look at the massive explosion of titles on iOS!
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Re: Are people finally warming to digital distribution?

Post by FatTrucker » Fri Dec 24, 2010 11:49 am

I'm sold given the correct service levels. I was very anti-DD to begin with but XBL, Steam and GOG have transformed that attitude TBH.

The downside are portals like iTunes where despite having a unique account and ID, if you have a drive or system failure and haven't made a physical backup of your purchased items then you have to purchase them again...... which is b*ll*cks quite frankly so for music I'm back to buying physical media.

The only things I would like to see, with Live in particular is more competetive and realistic pricing. If you want to get me out of the pre-owned section in GAME, then stop pricing your software above and beyond the prices in stores. I want discounts, if I'm not getting a physical product that's had to be manufactured, shipped and then marked up at retail, I expect the price of the download to reflect that, and while they're at it, if an older game is available NIB at retail for £10 or £15, don't stick it online at £19.99.

Other than that I'm good with it.
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Rayne
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Re: Are people finally warming to digital distribution?

Post by Rayne » Fri Dec 24, 2010 11:52 am

I remember Sony had problems with the PSP Go though, where they wanted to offer discounted prices on software the big game retailers threw their rattles out of the pram, essentially saying if Sony offered the software cheaper than they did then they'd stop stocking it :(
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Re: Are people finally warming to digital distribution?

Post by Nemesis » Fri Dec 24, 2010 12:46 pm

There maybe naysayers when it comes to digital distribution but it's only going to get more prevalent going forward. The stats are already showing the physical retail market is in decline since 2008 when it was at it's high point. Although it could be argued that systems such as the PSP, DS & Wii are coming to the end of their life cycles so software sales are declining, i-Tunes, Steam, PSN etc are holding more importance to Console Manufacturers/Publishers rather than just a supplementary income. As DD grows in mainstream acceptance (which it is) so retailers such as Game lose their influence, therefore, no matter how much they (Game) complain or throw hissy fits their voice will attach less importance. Of course the next generation of TV based consoles may stem the tide for a short time but I believe DD will become the major method of purchasing games.

Now, of course, this would mean nothing if DD prices were high. The average consumer who is used to walking into Game to purchase the latest Call of Duty for example, is safe in the knowledge that he/she can receive a discount when trading in used titles making the cost more acceptable. Most of us know how the Gaming Industry views the second hand market & they don't like it one bit. Therefore, if DD does become more far reaching than it currently is & if no trade ins' for digital content are allowed, then consumers definitely won't pay £40 to £50 for the next big thing. The owners of the digital service would have to think again about their pricing structure & what types of games they release. There's undoubtedly going to be some manoeuvring going on between consumer & supplier until an equilibrium is reached so that customers are happy with the price they are paying together with the returns publishers/developers can accrue to fund future hits. Regardless, the Genie is out of the bottle regarding DD. The success of i-Tunes has shown there is another way to market games & that they don't have to be 50+ hour epics. Now that many consumers have shown that they are willing to pay sub £10 games on a regular basis the market will diversify & mature. However, a word of warning to those people who say that they won't pay such & such for a game, not so long ago (well 1985 to be precise!) nobody thought they would fork out £9.95 for a Spectrum game until Ultimate came along & proved if the quality was there, the consumer would pay.
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Freestyler
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Re: Are people finally warming to digital distribution?

Post by Freestyler » Fri Dec 24, 2010 2:12 pm

Streaming Music. Free Service, with additional Subscription Model.
Streaming Movies. Free Service, with additional Subscription Model.
Streaming Video. Free Service, with additional Subscription Model.
Streaming Games...?

Digital Downloading is merely the stopgap tech on the road to a fully-internet-enabled future? Whenever that may be?
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Re: Are people finally warming to digital distribution?

Post by andyc » Fri Dec 24, 2010 2:40 pm

Freestyler wrote: Console Digital Download is a bit trickier for me, since there very definitely WILL be a time when it will be switched off. It might be another 5 years, or even 10, but - like the original Xbox Live - it will come to an end. Barring hardware failure I can play any SNES games I own until the very end of time itself, but once Microsoft decides to turn off its service I'm screwed. Just like I was when they turned off the old Xbox Live service and stopped me from playing Multiplayer Halo 2 on it through my Xbox 360.
But's that's nothing to do with digital downloads, it's just about online gaming in general. You can't play Halo 2 online even if you have physical disks. And, unless my xbox hard drive fails, I never have to worry about playing the games I downloaded offline. I'm sure there will be a point at which you wouldn't be able to re-download titles, but I think by then it's less likely to be an issue. And the ever increasing prevalance of retro gaming means it's more and more likely that there will be some way to access the classic titles on newer systems anyway.

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resident paul
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Re: Are people finally warming to digital distribution?

Post by resident paul » Fri Dec 24, 2010 2:57 pm

Still like physical copy of the game as digital downloads as subject your HDD not f*cking up & have to pay again whereabouts a physical copy you can play again & again without the hassle.
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speedlolita
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Re: Are people finally warming to digital distribution?

Post by speedlolita » Fri Dec 24, 2010 2:58 pm

resident paul wrote:Still like physical copy of the game as digital downloads as subject your HDD not f*cking up & have to pay again whereabouts a physical copy you can play again & again without the hassle.
Except, you can just redownload.
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resident paul
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Re: Are people finally warming to digital distribution?

Post by resident paul » Fri Dec 24, 2010 3:00 pm

speedlolita wrote:
resident paul wrote:Still like physical copy of the game as digital downloads as subject your HDD not f*cking up & have to pay again whereabouts a physical copy you can play again & again without the hassle.
Except, you can just redownload.
After getting a new HDD :?
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Re: Are people finally warming to digital distribution?

Post by Antiriad2097 » Fri Dec 24, 2010 3:35 pm

resident paul wrote:
speedlolita wrote:
resident paul wrote:Still like physical copy of the game as digital downloads as subject your HDD not f*cking up & have to pay again whereabouts a physical copy you can play again & again without the hassle.
Except, you can just redownload.
After getting a new HDD :?
Yes. Steam isn't HD dependent, it'll let you download your games to any PC you log into your account on.

I'd have to say that today I have deffo warmed to digital distibution, having just bought Valve's back catalogue for a grand total of £25. That's all the Half Life stuff, Left 4 Dead, everything.

Oh, and Judge Dredd Vs Death for 98p.
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