Game licensing details for Xbox One announced

I’ve made a few posts here in regards to always on DRM, the second hand game market and where things sit for publishers and developers as far as the impact on them in amongst all this – and I’ve got some pretty strong feelings on the matter as well. So I for one have been hanging out to see what the official stance will be for used games on the Xbox One and how Microsoft would tackle this, and today we got the answers. Microsoft have announced the details of how licensing will work on the Xbox One. Here are the highlights of it:

  • Buy the way you want—disc or digital—on the same day: You’ll be able to buy disc-based games at traditional retailers or online through Xbox Live, on day of release. Discs will continue to be a great way to install your games quickly.
  • Access your entire games library from any Xbox One—no discs required: After signing in and installing, you can play any of your games from any Xbox One because a digital copy of your game is stored on your console and in the cloud.  So, for example, while you are logged in at your friend’s house, you can play your games.
  • Share access to your games with everyone inside your home: Your friends and family, your guests and acquaintances get unlimited access to all of your games.  Anyone can play your games on your console–regardless of whether you are logged in or their relationship to you.
  • Give your family access to your entire games library anytime, anywhere: Xbox One will enable new forms of access for families. Up to ten members of your family can log in and play from your shared games library on any Xbox One. Just like today, a family member can play your copy of Forza Motorsport at a friend’s house. Only now, they will see not just Forza, but all of your shared games.  You can always play your games, and any one of your family members can be playing from your shared library at a given time.
  • Trade-in and resell your disc-based games: Today, some gamers choose to sell their old disc-based games back for cash and credit. We designed Xbox One so game publishers can enable you to trade in your games at participating retailers.  Microsoft does not charge a platform fee to retailers, publishers, or consumers for enabling transfer of these games.
  • Give your games to friends: Xbox One is designed so game publishers can enable you to give your disc-based games to your friends. There are no fees charged as part of these transfers. There are two requirements: you can only give them to people who have been on your friends list for at least 30 days and each game can only be given once.

So the main thing to highlight here – Microsoft will not be forcing you to not be able to trade in your games, and they are going to allow the publishers to opt-in to participate in the game trading process (and MS will not be taking any cut of what goes on in that transaction). This is great news in my opinion as it enables the best of both worlds, where the retails can keep selling used titles, and the publishers and devs get their cut. I also really like the way a game can be licensed to me but shared with my family as well. All in all I think this is great news for gamers who had concerns about this for the next-generation of Xbox. Make sure you go and read the full announcement for some of the other finer details though if you want to know more, and no doubt this will be elaborated on during E3 next week.

Make sure you jump on to the comments though and tell us what you think! Will you still buy games on a disc or will you go digital? Are you in to buying used games and will you continue to do that? Share your comments with us!

How Games Licensing Works on Xbox One

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Author: Brian Farnhill View all posts by
SharePoint expert by day and avid gamer by night. Favouring action and RPG games, an artist with explosive weapons in games and can’t ever be trusted with a sniper rifle. Brian is always going to be playing with the latest toys and games.

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