thoughts on Ubisoft's comments about players not "owning" games they have paid for...

I think that if I paid for a game, I should own that game. A digital purchase should be the same as if I bought a game with physical media. What are your thoughts...?

  • It really isn't a new idea. Steam and others followed the same path. MS and others software companies moved to the same model years ago and honestly with as big as updates and patches are (basically the same size as the install media) you are basically getting new software every update.

  • Ubisoft is the exact reason i don't like purchasing digital games. I shouldn't have to worry that a digital game is going to be deleted or taken from me whenever they feel like it. I spent that money not them i don't care for services like game pass if that means i could lose the games i spend money on. They should find a better idea then if people want and should own their games. Services are a waste if they have to do or make unfavorably decisions and ideas to get on that board. Games should be the gaming industry's main goal not services or digital media it should be making fun and creative ideas come to life. 

  • I think a lot folks are just taking this out of context without paying attention to the whole statement. The statement was about shifting the industry to subscription and streaming services by moving away from physical copies. Now I don't agree with his statement, but he isn't wrong. In order for these services to become the dominant model gamers will have to willingly move away from owning physical copies. That being said I won't give any charitability to this statement especially since Ubisoft will close "inactive" accounts wiping out entire purchased game libraries.  

  • It definitely sounds like a dangerous precedent, I'm willing to bet they won't want to reduce the game costs to offset this approach either. The world is definitely transitioning to a more digital operating space so it seems inevitable gaming will collectively be on the cloud in the future but there's always something special/nostalgiac about having the collectors editions of your favourite games (especially if there's a cool figurine model etc)

  • Being mostly to all digital is ok by me, BUT I like to own my games, as much can be said for a digital platform, much like Steam. Things like Game Pass are great, and having an online subscription to play tolerable, to an extent though. I still want my offline access to games, but willing to give up constant access to games for a better deal, SOMETIMES. It all depends really!

  • Consider for a moment Google, Apple, and Amazon in terms of the music, movies, and games you purchase. The content doesn't actually belong to you when you purchase it. Viewing the ToS (Terms of Service) or Ts and Cs (Terms and Conditions) you are essentially renting space on their server(s) to access what you've purchased. The content isn't actually yours, you are buying a license to access the game for a specific amount of time (life of the service or whenever the service owner deems necessary).

    Now have a look at this Who Owns Your Games? Philippe Tremblay of Ubisoft subscriptions delivered a message that was delivered a little over a decade ago. Since Steam's launch in 2003 those of us who have been staunch supporters of PC gaming stopped owning our games. The industry began getting you comfortable with not owning your games a long time ago. Tremblay simply said it in print!

    You might be thinking I support the effort of non ownership. I don't! The gaming industry harms legitimate purchasers with DRM (Digital Rights Management) that is intrusive and performance hampering or at best requiring a legitimate purchaser to jump through a hoop in order to play while traveling on airplane, train, or bus. Couple DRM with lack of ownership begins to breed those who "sail the seven seas". Sadly for us, those who purchase legitimately, ultimately have a worse user experience (beyond playing the game) than those who obtain the product illegitimately or sail the seven seas in search of a file to circumvent the necessity of being online or defeat the DRM.

    For these reasons I strongly suggest NEVER purchasing a AAA PC game on it's launch, it simply isn't worth it in terms of cost to benefit. Wait for it to go on sale and/or purchase it from legitimate key services like Greenmangaming, Fanatical, or Gamesplanet who will often have sales better than the seasonal Steam sales. Best of all is purchasing the game on https://www.gog.com/ . With your purchases on GoG, there is no DRM ... ZERO... EVER! It is their business model. Purchase a game... download the install files, copy it to external storage if you wish, and install the game. The game you purchase on GoG is truly yours (if you back up the installation files). Why purchase Baldur's Gate 3 on Steam (currently $59.99) when you can get it on GoG for the same price! Have you been sleeping on the great game Horizon Zero Dawn? Grab it on GoG for $12.49 instead of $49.99 on Steam.

    If you were to look at my Steam profile you'd see I own a bit over 500 games, so I don't want to sound like a hypocrite. I've been a user of Steam since 2003, long before what I now know about how we haven't owned our games since 2003!

    I've woken up... I hope you do too.

  • Most entertainment industries (publishing, movies, TV and gaming) have already or are in the process of adopting this model. They expect consumers to pay monthly fees for the "right to access" specific content, yet the content isn't truly under your control. Digital good are cheaper to manage than physical ones... but notice they still expect the same money.

  • "inactive" for how long? Your quotes sound very skeptical. Is there a way to download and/or make physical copies of a digital game for a more permanent and reliable library? Maybe if I was going off grid, or living on a boat with no wifi.

    NOT FOR DISTRIBUTION.

     

    A man very proud of his extensive library. Nothing more.

  • It all depends on the kind of game, there will always be single player offline games that I think the player owns forever as long as they have the gear to play it. Then there are multiplayer online games that offer ever changing content and players understand that in order for that content to be made their has to be more of a subscription or repurchasing. 

    I think where it gets shady and wrong is if a player isn't fully compensated if a game is taken down or moves on to quickly or if the player is just kicked due to inactivity even though they payed for the content.

    But it all depends on the kind of experience a developer wants to offer and if their heart is to truly give their community a good experience.

  • Totally agree.  This is all about control and money.  The board, stockholders, ceo, all want more money in their pocket.  No physical media, no packaging costs, no licensing costs for all those copies all goes in their pockets. Then with subscription and streaming, they own the one copy and can set the market or remove it or do whatever is going to give them maximum money now and in the future.  A dvd for instance could be resold many times and they dont get a cut, which pisses them off.  What bugs me is prices still go up and mostly the content isnt better in quality or quantity.