Ok, so this thread is a little out of left field but I thought it had enough merit for some debate. (Or at least some posts on how I should pull my head in
Why do we accept so many restrictions as console gamers?
I began asking myself this question after reading the last round of XBOX vs PS3 posts and I started to realize that as console gamers we get the rough end of the stick when put up against other forms of digital entertainment.
Imagine if you will that you just brought home your new DVD / Bluray player and because of your choice of player you were only allowed to watch the movies of certain distributors.
Can you conceive the uproar if consumers were forced to buy a SONY player for SONY movies, a Warner Brothers player for their titles, etc. The thought of it seems silly, but we as gamers don't seem to have the same issue when it comes to console games.
Imagine buying a Dell PC to surf the net, face book and play games on, but because you bought a Dell you could not communicate or play with users of ASUS, or HP computers. Hell even Apple and PC users can still interface with each other in some format and even play games with one another.
But ask if XBOX users can play games and chat with PS3 users and you get told "no" ... and we just except it.
Exclusive titles ... The fuel of fan boys, the marketing tool of console manufacturers and the "jackpot" of any publisher who can score the deal for their title to be exclusive .. when you think about it, are just tools for creating monopolies. Any other business or industry that try's to create a monopoly gets condemned or prosecuted ... so why do we except it as console gamers?
Add to this the fact that they further control who can play what and where, by restricting releases to select regions and "region locking" games and movies. Again we have all seemed to accept this form of control with very little dispute. (Although SONY need to be applauded for not region locking their PS3 games ... even though this was done in an attempt to remove the legitimate mod chipping defense vs any desire to give their customers a real choice.)
Should there be a restriction on what we can play, and with who, because we picked one console over another?
Just because a manufacturer makes a product, do they have the right to tell the end user they can only play certain games with certain players?
Do third party games developers have some moral obligation to create titles that cross platform users can play each other with?
As a side note; Have you noticed how all the consoles are becoming more like each other with each new update and peripheral release?
Well my learned gaming colleagues, what are your thoughts?