With everything in life moving to the digital age, gaming was the last thing that I still have physical media for. No more disks! I’m done! My music is streamed, my movies are either streamed or downloaded or even viewed on demand…so why do I still pay a disk?
What’s the point? My music and movies are now streamed. With the Xbox One being released, and me making room for it, I stated to look at all of the game boxes I had for the Xbox 360, and then realizing that honestly…I doubt I will end up playing any of them ever again. Grand Theft Auto 5 is an exception as it’s the last game I purchased for the system. In trying to figure all of this out, I came to the realization that I’m not buying physical media for the Xbox One.
Looking at Steam, and how I own so many games on there, without owning anything physically for it, why should it be any different on my console? Granted there are HUGE discounts on PC games and on steam specifically, and because of this I have to make a few exceptions. For starters, if there is an amazing deal for a game, then I will obviously buy it… For example, I managed to get FIFA 14 for $35, a next gen game, for about half the price? Yes please!
Now this brings me to those who are “collectors”… and who would prefer the physical media…my question is why? Think of an actual game case, what’s in it? NOTHING! There is the disk obviously, which you have to install…I’ll get back to this in a few, but let’s think about the other side, the side with the slip(s). At one point in time you would get stickers, posters, and even a memo book! At one point in time you would get stickers, posters, a full blown manual explaining the game and how to play alongside some nice screen shots or artwork from it… and for those who remember, there was even a location for notes. Yeah kids, back in the day, we took notes! It helped us get through certain sections of the game or to remember where we left off. Sure this feature isn’t all that appealing in a digital world anymore but that’s exactly why I’m making the switch, there is just no need for any of that any more.
I can only speak for Xbox One as that is the only next gen system I bought. Realizing that every game must be installed now, I got to thinking, why should I need to swap out the disks when they are installed? If what you want is the physical merchandise, then go for it! advertising this as the all in one system to conquer media. If that is the case, why should I have to change disks when it is only going to spin once to check that I bought it? Afterwards it’s just going to run the installed version of the game anyway. It doesn’t make any sense at all, if you buy the game from the console, and then run it, it will make a better experience in gaming whilst you switch seamlessly between games. Sure at one point you’ll run into storage issues, but just erase a game you aren’t playing any more, easy…
The one and only reason I find being valid to purchase physical media would be in the event of Special or Limited Edition version of games as they come with extra things you would enjoy. This is very hit or miss as not many items are truly worth the price of the item you’re getting but we all like “collectible” items. Just look at Borderlands Vault Hunters where you get a replica of the in-game Loot Chest, as well as a Bobble Head of Marcus, those are pretty cool for any fan of the series. Look at the upcoming release of Titanfall and the HUGE titan you get when you get that.
If the plan is to get the physical merchandise, go for it, otherwise, join me in the switch!