Don Mattrick Lays Out The Changes To Xbox One's DRM

After news broke that Microsoft would be removing Xbox One's DRM, Don Mattrick, President of Microsoft's Interactive Entertainment Business has laid out the changes in a broad blog post.

Under the headline "Your Feedback Matters" Mattrick stated that Microsoft has "heard directly from many of you, read your comments and listened to your feedback."

The main changes are as follows...

An internet connection will not be required to play offline Xbox One games – After a one-time system set-up with a new Xbox One, you can play any disc based game without ever connecting online again. There is no 24 hour connection requirement and you can take your Xbox One anywhere you want and play your games, just like on Xbox 360.
Trade-in, lend, resell, gift, and rent disc based games just like you do today – There will be no limitations to using and sharing games, it will work just as it does today on Xbox 360.

You can read the post in its entirety here. This is an incredibly bold move by Microsoft. Never in all my time covering games have I seen a company forced to change a policy in this way. This is a timely reminder that consumers still have power and it's a beautiful thing.


    Woot woot!
    That should shut those PS3 fanboys. I was hesitant to buy either console, but now the xbox1 has won out :)

      It won out because it backtracked?

        "That should shut those PS3 fanboys"...
        I think that implies dg is a MS fanboy.
        But I think everyone should admit that MS backtracking is a good thing for the xbone

        Wasn't the PS4 winning because they didn't change a thing? Not much difference here.

          They still havent removed the need for the kinect. They're still gonna get a nice perve on you while you jerk your gerkin and copy a tape for the NSA.

            Ha lol, i dont mind the NSA but i bet if you rang them they wouldnt give you a backup of everything they took form you

            Even though that's not true, but okay. typical of trolls like you though

              People have already said multiple times this is horrible logic. They never detail the 'pause Kinect' most likely because all it means is like turning the xbox off it's actually only on stand-by, listening for you to un-pause it (thus it is still always listening making the pause completely pointless.

              As for turning it off, all it does is (according to Microsoft) stop it watching you, while it still sits listening to everything you say until it hears the 'Xbox on' command. Apparently that too can be turned off but even then who care about when the xbox is turned off (there is a power point for that) what matters is that there is 'no' way to stop it watching/listening while the Xbox One is running.

              Also as for 'only sending information with explicit permission' I don't recall giving permission for the prism bullshit but they did that anyway, why trust them with this?

      So was it only "ps3 fanboys" complaining about the DRM? I suggest this probably "shut" a bunch of Xbox fanboys as well, considering it will actually affect them. and they were motivated to complain to get it changed.

      Handy tip: If you think you arent a fanboy but you want to see one side of a fanboy war proved wrong, then you are a fanboy.

      If anything, people should be thanking Sony. This didn't come about because of customer feedback, they had plenty of that before E3 and changed nothing, this has come about becuase of Sony's announcement and the resulting shift in market share.

      If Microsoft has won you over this easily, then you were never going to leave them in the first place, your just talking shit.

      Annnnnnnnnnnd I am pretty sure being a PS3 fanboy is nothing to do with hating on the next-gen Xbox console. Lol. Gamers hated it, not just fanboys of ANY console.

    ( •_•)>⌐■-■ So I guess you could say it's now...
    (⌐■_■) XBox 180.

    It requires a day one patch though to initiate all these changes. It is, also, still slightly more expensive, requires a Kinect at all times and is slightly less powerful than its main competitor; this is why I'll be sticking with the PS4.

      Xbox One-Eighty. Brilliant. Hat's off.

    It's taken nearly 90% of gamers to cry out in order for this to change...

    I think "consumers still have power" seems a bit charitable.

      Not to mention the fact that the price of the Microsoft stock immediately dropped after the major burn they received from Sony at E3 and, secondly, they were being trounced in pre-orders by the PS4.

        Where did you read this? It was reported that Microsofts stock actually rose after E3.

          Can't remember exactly where, but it was the day after Sony's E3 presser that their stock price reportedly dropped. However, I freely admit it may have risen again days later and I just didn't read about it.

      "90% of gamers"

      Bullshit. Citation needed.

        Yes, we would like peer reviewed studies and a thesis.

          Well that's a bit much, I'd say just a detailed bibliography that adheres to the Oxford-style referencing standards will do fine.

        Amazon poll. About 30,000 in favour to PS4, 2000 in favour of Xbone.

          That was swarmed by Reddit, who is openly anti-Xbox. Internet polls are never accurate indicators, especially considering how easy it is to fake votes. There was a reason it got taken down.

            90% of surveyed gamers.

            ...In a self-selected group of respondents.

            Seriously though, who the fuck ever gives those details on the news when they make percentage claims? Damn near EVERY statistic can be contested.

              Well, I called bullshit on it because it's not true. The vocal group isn't often the largest group, and the 90% claim is plainly nonsense. I'm not really a fan of people saying 'everyone supports my opinion' unless it's demonstrably true. Of course, if people just spoke for themselves and not others it'd be nice =)

                It's a good thing 90% doesn't equate to "everyone" then.

                  Semantics. You're saying 'almost everyone supports my opinion', which is equally false.

              Every statistic? I call bullshit.

                Aha, but I said 'damn near'. And that's if plotted on a chart on an A4 piece of paper, and 'near' is qualified as distance from 0, as relative to... the sun.


    I don't realy think this is MS being magnanimous and "listening", I think it is purely the realisation that Sony was going to continue to make a laughing stock of them if they didn't back track.
    The moment you remove the required internet connection I am far more ok with the console, but I dont think there are any exclusives I care about yet, which is sort of good, because if they can undo this silliness with a day one update, they can put it all back later, and I'd like to give it some time and see how it pans out for a bit before jumping in. Whereas I feel fairly secure about the PS4, and will probably get one near release (or when Second Son gets released).

    People power!! (I still don't want to buy one, but how great is it that the masses can have such an impact?)

    It still needs to check in the first time you load a game lol

      It actually says a 'one time' system set up. So, no, you don't need to connect every time you install a new game. However, I've rarely installed a new game without it needing to download an update within the first day or two anyway, so the point is probably moot.

      Basically like Steam. That's a kind of DRM I have no objection to.

      There's a big difference to someone giving you a wrist-band to show that you're OK to be in the club, then letting you in and up to your own devices, versus the same asshole bouncer pulling you off the floor to check your wrist every five minutes.

    No it doesn't

    Excellent news.

    I still don't want to buy one over a PS4 but it's good to see some common sense.

    I hope they'll still allow cloud based libraries and discless play. If not I'll be disappointed.

      Discless play if you buy digital versions.

      They should really promote the digital versions by price reductions, sales or some sort of points/cashback scheme to encourage people to download rather than buy discs.

        Considering that this was the potential upside to the 24 hour check in, I am hoping the same.

    I posted on another article how Microsoft might have a lot of strengths, but they aren't exactly nimble and I wouldn't expect them to change course quickly. Well I was totally wrong. The article is spot on when it says: "This is an incredibly bold move by Microsoft." It seems the response scared them into action. If this leads to an even race between the two big competitors, gamers on both systems will benefit.

    Looks like it's Microsoft's turn to deal with it

      "Hey Microsoft: you don't have the basic right to our dollars by default like you thought, and you actually have to earn them with a superior product."
      "...Deal with it."


    The people's poet!

    This is huge and I am glad to hear MS listening to their customers, but this sudden change concerns me a bit.

    How long does it take to design a console and the systems around it?
    I can imagine the DRM was an integral part of the Xbox One and the new Xbox Live's design, and now a week after E3 they have gone and torn all of that out.
    Considering the console is five months from launch this seems like a risky and drastic last minute change to make, and I wonder how this will impact the overall design of the Xbox One and Xbox Live.

    Kinda disappointing. I wasn't looking to buy either next-gen console (at least not from the get-go) but discless gaming and family sharing actually sounded like cool features. Bit sad to see it go because of something that got blown completely out of proportion, now all we have to show for the next-gen is a share button. Woo.

      That's them being petulant and saying that if we're not going to play by the stupid rules which advantage them, they're taking their ball and going home. There's no reason the digital age can't be more flexible than it is, but because they couldn't lump their DRM into, they decided 'fuck them, then'.

      Also, a console which borderline bricks itself without internet is a pretty difficult to blow out of proportion, when its proportions are so massive.

        If it applied only to digital games, they could do both. The problem with using the disc as authorisation is there's nothing on the disc that is uniquely identifiable, so there's no clean way to tie in the family sharing to that medium. Similarly, discless play for games bought on disc would only work if a key of some sort was distributed with the game as well, otherwise anyone could share the same disc around and 'register' it to each account as though it had been bought new then never need the disc again, which would be even worse for piracy than the old system.

          Pretty sure they said there's still a one-time authentication. If the authentication is tied to the disc (like it was planned originally, as just a digital-licence-distribution-medium), there's no reason they can't make that check again, when it's first put in the drive. Just like activating a product on Steam. Just like they were going to do anyway, but only once instead of every day.

          As far as I can tell, they're not saying you can just put the disc in and play it without ever connecting to the Internet. With that in place, the abuses are prevented, and there's nothing precluding them from doing the sharing either.

          EDIT: I might be wrong on this, re-reading the text above:

          ""An internet connection will not be required to play offline Xbox One games – After a one-time system set-up with a new Xbox One, you can play any disc based game without ever connecting online again."

          If that's a 'system set-up' only, then you add/remove discs as you please, then yes - so much for the discless future. If it's one setup PER game, like Steam currently does, then the discless future could be here. But re-reading it, it really seems like it's the system only.

          Last edited 20/06/13 10:34 am

    So now 'any' disc game is offlineable? Welp, looks like no game gets mandatory cloud. It was a dealbreaker for me anyway, but I was morbidly curious to see how cloud-tech would precipitate into more games as people got used to it.

    Re people whining about discless play and sharing: Mild inconvenience is what you pay for property rights.

      I see it as being the way the PC runs now. Games which advertise themselves as using the cloud? They continue to do so. The way the PC MMOs advertise themselves as being online-only, but you can still play Skyrim without phoning in to the mothership.

      It really doesn't need to be all-or-nothing like Sim City tried.

      I didn't like the ideas they were putting forward about cloud computing being used to offload background tasks as it seems someone with high speeds and low pings will have a far smoother experience with some games than the guy on a 512k connection

    From what I've seen from store owner postings, and quiet checking with friends in the industry (well, if you can call EB games that - zing!), preorders for PS4 have been smashing the living daylights out of xbone preorders, and my highly-scientific 'elevator survey(/eavestdropping)' with fellow office building occupants at 5:10pm showed incredulity and disdain for DRM-only restrictions with no upsides.

    Personally, I consider EB Games and non-gamer coworkers 'mainstream' enough to be surprised that they were hearing about it and criticizing, so I'm not surprised Microsoft thought so too.

    Understand: 'Internet people' projections show them getting fucking slaughtered on opinion, but still making some money from a sizeable chunk of folks either not knowing they should be outraged, or caving to get the exclusives, leaving Microsoft with still a 'respectable' market share.

    They do not want to do 'respectably' out of this console race. They wanted to fucking WIN. Doing 'OK' out of people who don't know better or have to have the exclusives? That's not OK to them.

      There were upsides though. Digitally managed licenses is what allows things like discless play to begin with.

        If only they could've gone with 'once per disc' connection middle-ground, instead of all-DRM or nothing.

          I know people found it controversial, but I was actually looking forward to the console pushing towards a digital-only future. I'm a little disappointed that they are at least giving the appearance of backing away from that goal.

    You know how it's easy to tell that they've made the right call? Just by reading that statement. It's the clearest piece of communication to come out of MS in the last month or so since the original reveal.

    They've spent the last month talking themselves in circles, contradicting each other and just generally looking like a bunch of fuckin' amateurs, Dude. Now they issue a statement like this and it's clear and to the point and they actually sound like they understand what they're talking about themselves.

      Makes you wonder how much of this future vision was imposed from the Microsoft level rather than the Xbox group?

        Oh, I think they were all on the same page. The problem was that they were struggling to spin it in any way to make it look even vaguely like something that was a benefit for the consumer instead of what it actually was which was a blatant cash grab.

    Well, when you talk to retailers, the figures I heard ranged from PS4 pre-orders outselling Xbone anywhere between 2-to-1 and 10-to-1. All the offence and outrage in the world wouldn't have (and previously hasn't - looking at you, EA's Origin) made a bit of difference, but when it's reflected in the sales figures, that's when they take notice.

    Unfortunately for Microsoft, the damage is done. I'm sure they'll claw back some ground, but if Sony just keep doing nothing to rock the boat much then Microsoft is just adjusting how far behind they'll be (hmmm, sounds not unlike a certain domestic political situation). I love my three 360s, but I won't be getting an Xbone on principle. I might reconsider when we see an Xbone Slim, assuming things stay this way allowing Microsoft to demonstrate a commitment to this change of policy. So, assuming similar timelines to the 360, I'll talk to you in 2018, Microsoft.

      I disagree with you about Sony. I think because they did little else at E3 other than standing proud and strong with their policies that it now becomes a challenge for them to reiterate why they are a gamer's console. Microsoft had a huge showing of games, and people have been talking about it as if they had forgotten Sony has 12 first party AAA studios.

      Personally, I was expecting a lot more demos on stage and what we got was pretty much DESTINY and that was it. Even though it's been said that launch games like Knack and Killzone and DriveClub are pretty much ready to go, they didn't spare any time for them, instead giving us a look at 3rd party games that do not separate them from Microsoft or even Wii U in some cases.

      If you took away the part about used games and no online requirement from their show, it was a weak show TBH (especially with no LAST GUARDIAN! Grr!)

      So even though personally, long term, I think Sony will overtake Microsoft because they have such a strong 1st party, and that the exclusives on Xbone are really only timed, or many that they aren't going to invest in, I think Sony still has a hill to hike.

      Perhaps they are escalating their efforts by starting small at E3 and going bigger at Gamescom before the proverbial 'Fire Everything' at TGS. It makes sense to ramp up this way since they are launching Holiday.

        I'm not sure we do disagree about Sony - I think I agree with everything you've said! :)

        Sony got away with a weak show - though I enjoyed The Dark Sorcerer and The Order - and came out looking strong by doing pretty much nothing (in fact, to my mind, they also had a negative conference, considering the only change was the whole online multiplayer now requiring PS+ thing). I mean, MGS was a feature of the Microsoft show! Sony definitely have some work to do, but that work is about maintaining momentum (something Microsoft should've been able to do, until the announcements started coming in May).

        I made a comment the other day that I think Sony pulled a Bradbury - they "won" because they stayed in the game and and capitalised on Microsoft screwing up colossally. They can coast to victory, but that still requires some effort.

    Wow, talk about a backpedal. What about the games requiring the 'infinite power of the cloud', lol? Great news for consumers though.

    The cheaper, higher spec PS4 still looks more attractive to me at this point.


    Another 10 years of the same shit and no innovation.

      *slow clap*

      Innovation comes from game developers, not DRM.

        And also the capabilities of the hardware... You backwater heebs would probably oppose the requirement of broadband connection these days as well.

        Enjoy your DudeBro gaming with glossier graphics... because that's all you are getting. better AA and resolution.... Fuck-a-doodle-do.

          Instead of what they were offering, which was DudeBro gaming with glossier graphics, better AA and resolution plus restrictive DRM? How does taking away the DRM in any way change the rest?

          How exactly did the requirement to check in online every 24 hours, the restrictions on used game sales, and the region locking in anyway improve "the capabilities of the hardware"?

          Innovation comes from developers. The hardware is basically just their toolbox - better hardware just means they've got better tools to work with. It's still down to the developers to provide the innovation and the publishers to back them. Back when they first announced the XBone, with all it's DRM and used game restrictions and region-locking in place, what were the games they showed with it? COD and EA sports. Innovation. Woo.

          The DRM (or lack of it) and innovation (or lack of it) have absolutely nothing to do with each other.

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