Update: Video added of the interview.
By now, if you haven’t heard about the Xbox One’s mandatory Internet connectivity, you’ve clearly been living in, around, or underneath some sort of rock formation. The console, which Microsoft has continued to flaunt at this year’s E3 conference, requires gamers to connect to the web every 24 hours in order to maintain usability. As should be obvious, this causes issues for the thousands of Xbox fans who live off the grid, are centered on certain army bases, or don’t like to pay monthly fees for Internet access. Even worse, there’s a pretty crazy phenomenon called a “blackout” in which a civilized population loses electricity for a period of time.
As IGN has reported, someone finally asked company president Don Mattrick how internet-less gamers should deal with the next console cycle. Here’s what he had to say:
[quote]“Fortunately, we have a product for people who aren’t able to get some form of connectivity; it’s called the Xbox 360.” [/quote]
To translate, it seems as if the company isn’t too concerned about the fans who won’t be making the jump to Xbox One. Don Mattrick’s advice, which essentially tells gamers to stick with aging hardware, comes off as disrespectful to the many people who have, over the years, contributed to the overall success of the tech giant.
Luckily, there’s a solution. Both Sony and Nintendo have stated (very clearly) that compulsive connectivity would be antithetical to their individual business philosophies, and as such, neither the PS4 nor the Wii U will be restrictive in this way. Even better, these two consoles are also much cheaper than the Xbox One. While Microsoft seems to exude indifference at the thought of losing this fraction of their fan base, it’s starting to look like the company’s insolent policies might be leaving a larger mark on consumers. Don’t believe me? Take a quick stroll on over to Reddit, Twitter, or really any other media outlet.
Boston-based writer, artist, designer, critic, loser & storyteller. Focused on the intersection of games, culture, narrative, and art. KillerStrokes on XBL, Steam, PSN. @Wherbit on Twitter. http://willpowerarts.com/