Disk VS Download: An Analysis
It seems more and more rumors regarding all systems and consoles going to download only services keep popping up, with a recent one naming Microsoft’s Xbox as the next to go digital only. As a gamer I find myself, as I’m sure many of you out there are as well, questioning the logic and the possible gain to the industry if such a thing were to happen. So let’s speculate a little bit, shall we?
Firstly, is this a good idea considering the gigantic failure that was the PSP Go and the lack of support following the system’s release? There are some folks that like a tidy collection of all digital media to scroll through at a touch of a button, but then there are those folks who love their many shelves lined with game boxes and the like, me being one of the latter. Digital media, and its cousins digital games, are quickly rising in number and one can easily see the reason for all the rumors. It’s especially evident when games that were supposed to be released on disc later come out as a download only format. The games that have had this happen are not well known, but some did receive a lot of hype in the beginning. See I Am Alive for my reference to that one.
Secondly, will this be beneficial to console sales and media sales in general? I would honestly go out on a limb and say no to this. Midnight releases would go away and the crowd at Gamestop and other gaming retailers would dwindle to nothing. Consoles would no longer be needed to be released in generations with improved this or that because it’d all be done via software upgrades. Not to mention that the retail market for used games would disappear overnight. No more trade-ins, no more exchanging or borrowing with and from friends, that’d be it. That, in itself, makes me sad. I’m a huge supporter of the used game market and the things it does for gamers that are less than well off.
Lastly, my final point and question: Is the casual gamer to blame for these rumors and considerations? There are people out there that are gamers and love to game, but do not wish to compete in the arena of Call of Duty or Battlefield, or don’t want to grind through hours of gameplay like in Borderlands. There are those folks out there that like to sit down with a download only title like Braid or Echochrome and enjoy a few hours of gaming without having to get too much into the more complicated aspects of gaming such as leveling or dungeon raiding and completely avoid the disc crowd. Also, some gamers cannot see spending $60 on a game when they won’t be able to enjoy and would rather spend those non-monetary MS points, or in the case of the Playstation 3, real money, for a game that they know they will enjoy and cannot drop or scratch. Are they solely to blame or are we all guilty of having purchased a download only game?
That’s it for my little section of analysis regarding Disc versus Download. Hope you enjoyed and if you have any thoughts or comments please share them.
Thank you for reading.
Miguel “Deadman” Pedroza