The Xbox Live outage that happened this weekend caused a lot of talk on the networks. This kind of service failure happens from time to time in the video game sector and even if it remains rare, it causes certain disappointments for players. But the most damaging thing is that the console becomes almost unusable.
3 days of problems connecting and launching games on Xbox
The Xbox after-sales service has had its work cut out in recent days. Support spent a good part of the weekend keeping players informed of the situation and the various issues were not resolved quickly.
It all started on Friday, May 6 at the end of the day. Xbox Support reported that people were having trouble launching games, buying games, or starting cloud gaming sessions. The next day, the teams indicated that they were still working, but that improvements had been made before indicating that the problem was solved.
But a few hours later, the problems persisted and it was finally on Sunday that a message indicated that they were solved. It’s finally only since that night that everything seems to be back to normal, after about 3 days of breakdowns and problems. As of this writing, some people may still be having issues based on feedback on our Discord and social media.
DRM continues to ruin the offline gaming experience
When a breakdown of a network like that of Xbox Live occurs, it is easy to understand that it is not possible to access online services. Not having access to your list of connected friends, not being able to launch multiplayer games seems completely normal until the incident is corrected and the network is restored. But the main issue here is that the console becomes pretty much unusable even offline.
On the networks this weekend, many of you complained about not being able to launch a game you bought, including when the console is offline. Without being able to launch a game, the console then becomes a plastic brick that is almost useless. How is it possible ? The answer is to be found on the side of DRM, this rights management which verifies that you have indeed purchased a game to play it.
In all likelihood, this management is done via online services and these refuse all access to the games when there is a problem of this type. And if we remember the rather catastrophic launch of the Xbox One, this is exactly what the players opposed. At the time, Microsoft indicated that the console had to connect to the Internet at least every 24 hours, which raised a wave of protest and forced the manufacturer to cancel everything just after E3.
What had outraged the players at the time happened this weekend. Here is what Microsoft promised for the Xbox One and which particularly resonates today.
An Internet connection will not be required to play Xbox One games offline – After a one-time system setup with a new Xbox One, you can play any game on disc without ever going online again. There is no 24 hour connection requirement and you can take your Xbox One wherever you want and play your games just like on Xbox 360.
In addition to buying a disc from a retailer, you can also download games from Xbox Live the day they are released. If you choose to download your games, you will be able to play them offline as you do today. Xbox One games will be playable on any Xbox One console – there will be no regional restrictions.
Xbox needs to change DRM policy following Xbox Live outage
If Microsoft had promised that we could play the games we bought offline, that is no longer the case today. The promise has faded in 9 years and the launch of Xbox Series X and Xbox Series S does not seem to have remedied the problem.
Washington Post reporter Gene Park shared his opinion over the weekend: “The DRM issue is the biggest problem I have with Xbox. It’s crazy how I can’t play games I bought and own because they can’t handle it properly. Imagine not being able to read a book because the publishing house in England is on fire. »
Why is it therefore not possible to play offline when you insert a disc into your console or when you have downloaded it? It seems quite incredible, including in 2022 and in the age of everything connected. The problem here is not so much to be able to use a service that you pay for such as the Xbox Game Pass, but to access games that you have purchased.
While the brand wants to be close to the concerns of its community, the Xbox Live outage this weekend has again revealed a major problem that Xbox teams will have to take a serious look at.