Xbox One loyalists want Microsoft to reinstate the new console's tough copy protection controls and mandatory online connection requirement that were axed following a backlash.
Thousands of gamers have put their names to a petition piling pressure on Redmond to give them the Xbox One console it promised at gaming conference E3 in June.
And that promised console packed a strict new system of DRM (digital rights management) that clamped down on players trading games, and required the machine to be permanently online to enforce those copy-protection policies. The DRM tech accompanied fresh rules on buying and selling used games, which would have wrecked the secondhand-games market.
The changes sparked a massive outcry on the web among Xbox fans, and less than a week after announcing the details Microsoft made a major U-turn. It said the Xbox One would not need to check in to Redmond every 24 hours to enforce the DRM policies, and it lifted limits on the rental, sale and trading of disc-based games.
But now Xbox One fan David Fontenot has organised a pro-DRM petition calling on Microsoft to reverse that U-turn. On petition site Change.org, he wrote:
This was to be the future of entertainment. A new wave of gaming where you could buy games digitally, then trade, share or sell those digital licenses. Essentially, it was Steam for Xbox. But consumers were uninformed, and railed against it, and it was taken away because Sony took advantage of consumers uncertainty.
We want this back. It can't be all or nothing; there must be a compromise.
At the time of writing the petition had just over 8,000 signatures although some were clearly not genuine. There was trolling and flaming aplenty with claims and counter claims of fanboidom and accusations of others being Sony stooges and dupes.
Xbox chief Don Mattrick, who left Microsoft in the wake of the Xbox One controversy to run web plaything biz Zynga, said Redmond's U-turn last month gave Xboxers the best of both worlds.
“While we believe that the majority of people will play games online and access the cloud for both games and entertainment, we will give consumers the choice of both physical and digital content,” Mattrick argued at the time.
Microsoft watchers will recall the last uprising against the software giant: disgruntled programmers mobilising in April 2012 against the redesigned yet bleached and colourless Visual Studio 11, which was made to look more like the new Windows 8 Metro user interface. More than 4,000 horrified coders registered their dissatisfaction on Microsoft’s UserVoice poll, and Microsoft reintroduced some colour as a result. ®