Today Microsoft announced that it will lift some of the DRM restrictions of the Xbox One that angered many gamers in the past few weeks.
In a blog post the head of the Xbox division Don Mattrick wrote that Microsoft won’t require an online connection for the Xbox One. Gamers will have to connect their console to the Internet once when they first set it up, but after that it will no longer require an Internet connection. There is no more “24 hour connection requirement,” the console will work just like the Xbox 360 when not connected to the web.
Microsoft will also let gamers buy and sell used games or lend disc-based games to their friends without restriction. Publishers no longer have the option to restrict a gamer’s option to sell a game back to GameStop or another retailer. The change also lifts the restriction that let gamers only lend a game to a friend once for however long that own the game.
The Xbox one will play disc-based and downloaded games regardless of the user’s Internet connection. That means gamers can take their console wherever they want, including nuclear submarines and play any game they currently own a copy of.
Microsoft will also make the Xbox One region unlocked, so gamers can play any Xbox One game on any console regardless of country of origin. That’s great news for travelers and gamers who like to import games.
The new policies come with a few downsides, however. With the new DRM policies gamers can’t share downloaded Xbox One games. There is no word on how this will effect the announced family sharing feature, though it seems that feature is no more.
Microsoft’s new policies will also mean that to play a disc-based game that’s installed on the Xbox One hard drive, gamers have to insert the disc into the console, like they have to on the Xbox 360. That makes the gaming slightly less convenient and a bit less like Steam, though gamers who want the convenience will have the option to download any Xbox One game the day it arrives in stores.