Written by kube00, Erik Kubik Wednesday, 17 August 2011 05:00
First off, before game publishers can go all digital distribution all the time, we need faster Internet. As a whole, the United States is far behind parts of Europe, Japan, and South Korea. We need better infrastructure even to rural areas so everyone can have at least a 15mb connection.
Faster Internet would be nice since everything will be download only. ISPs will have to do away with capping our connections. This 3-5 GBs of data limitation a month isn’t going to help us. In a few days some gamers would exceed this limit. And since the Internet will be readily available, how about we get the cost lowered as well?
A few other things would help with the digital distribution age. How about digital game rentals? Similar to what PSN does with movies. You pay to rent a game for a few days and then after the rental is gone it would automatically delete from your system.
I think another thing that is important to digital distribution is the ability to let other gamers borrow your games. Part of the fun of having games on some sort of physical media is letting your friends and family borrow the game. Say for example in the future on Steam, you could loan Half Life 3 to your friend from work for a few days. It would be unavailable for you to play and be tied temporarily into their account.
Another good idea might be some sort of used game market. For example, when a gamer finishes a game they could sell it back to Steam or PSN for credit. Or maybe there could be some sort of system where a gamer could gift another gamer their game if they no longer want it. It would remove the game from gamer A's system and if they wanted it back they would have to buy it.
What if the service breaks? What happens if Steam goes down for a few weeks? I’m sure gamers would like some way to play some of their games offline and be semi-independent from the service.
The things gamers might miss include our large collection of physical games, which overflow shelves in every room. Gamers will also miss buying the overpriced and oversized collectors editions. I’ll personally miss loading the physical media into my game console or loaning the physical game to my friends. None of this will exist with digital distribution. Digital distribution is quickly becoming the norm and with a few tweaks here and there I think gamers should be ready.