A World Without Physical Media

The advent of PC Software Steam and Direct 2 Drive has got me thinking about the future of video game ownership. We’re all used to buying our favourite titles from the local store, but more and more of us have begun buying games online as direct downloads. Whether these are retro titles on the Nintendo Wii’s Virtual Console or full titles on Xbox Live, the physical form of a game seems to be almost non-essential. Read the preview below, but for the full article click on the ‘more’ button.

The PSP Go is just about ready to hit store shelves, taking the first curious step into the world of download only gaming. Similar delivery channels have come out in the past few years, such as PC owners using Steam and arcade titles being available on Xbox Live/ Playstation Network, but this is the first time a console will not have the option of boxed, retailed games. Sony’s latest handheld has ditched the UMD format completely, so to play anything at all you’ll need an internet connection and access to their online store.

These advances in technology were inevitable. In the music industry CD sales are continuing to drop, allowing MP3 downloads to grow steadily on Apple’s iTunes store. Fans seem content to trade in their large collections of vinyl or CD’s in favour of virtual ownership. Could the same happen to all of our favourite games consoles? (More)

Feel free to drop a comment below, voicing your own opinions on the future of game libraries or how we’ll purchasing new titles. Stay up to date with my work and other UK gaming features on Thumbsticks!



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