A few months ago, Edge reported on a few features that Microsoft’s successor to the Xbox 360 would apparently flaunt—none of which were all too pleasing. In case you’ve forgotten, the Xbox 720 was reported to block consumers from playing used games and require the console to be online at all times if you wish to play. If you’re not quite sure why that’s bad not only for us, but GameStop and even Microsoft themselves, we’ve got all the answers.
But today, a new development in these rumors has come about. A screenshot surfaced today confirming or otherwise implying truth in several aspects of the aforementioned rumors and more about the upcoming “Durango,” as the console is codenamed, and IGN has confirmed the screenshot’s validity. By far the best of these rumors is that Project Durango will feature a high-fidelity Kinect sensor, but if you’re thinking it’s all sunshine from there, you might want to step back.
“Every Durango console will have a hard drive, although its exact capacity has not been chosen,” reads help documentation in the Durango XDK. “It will be large enough, however, to hold a large number of games. All games will be installed on the hard drive. Play from the optical disc will not be supported.”
And yes, that means exactly what you think it means—on Durango, you will not play games from a disc, but rather use the disc to install a copy of the game on your console’s hard drive. In other words, you can only use one game on one console, effectively crushing all hopes of playing used games on Microsoft’s next console. There’s certainly a positive side to this, in that all of your physical games will be accessible on the console without the need to switch discs, which brings the best of both worlds for digital and retail sales, but that glimmer of hope is also weakened by the fact that if your console crashes, there go all of your games.
Also of note: the Durango will feature “Always On, Always Connected” online connectivity. Whether Microsoft will use the always-on functionality as a means of DRM is unclear; the documentation only mentions background updates, similar to those announced for the PlayStation 4.
While this isn’t exactly confirmed to be the same system in the last rumor, it’s awfully close. Here is where IGN’s news isn’t so bad, as we don’t know that gamers will have to have a stable, fast online connection in order to enjoy their games, but it doesn’t deny it either. It looks like for now, we’re going to have to wait and see, but at least we can take some solace in the fact that digital downloads will be as unobtrusive as can be.
What do you make of all of this? Do you hope Microsoft changes their minds before the launch of the Durango, or have you already decided to switch over to another console?