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Forums - Sales Discussion - How Series S could be last place in the US, Europe, and Japan, but first-place globally

jason1637 said:
src said:

Delusional. Humour us and prove it then

Okay. So I have a physical copy of Far Cry 6 for Xbox. I deleted the game and put it back into my Xbox. Here is what I was treated with.

Then I proceeded to upgrade it. And see this.

As you can see from the image 575 MB of the game came from the disc while as 85 GB is downloading from my internet connection.

It's not only a Ubisoft thing.

Halo Infinite disc doesn't include the game.

CoD Vanguard cant be played without a a big patch

https://support.activision.com/content/atvi/support/web/en/vanguard/articles/vanguard-installation-and-setup.html

These are 3 of the biggest games of the year. Unfortnutaley I don't have any other physical games besides Far Cry ( I got rid of all my physical games last year) so I cant test it with other games but the last physical game I remember not having to downloading a huge update to play was Evolve and that game came out early last gen.

Some Smart Delivery games only have the Xbox One version on the disc. Metro Exodus and Resident Evil 8 are just 2 examples. Some games actually has both versions on the disc or has 2 discs. It's a game by game basis and unfortunately the case doesn't mention if an internet connection is required, so we don't know what games has both versions on disc(s). At least from what I hear all Xbox Series X games except COD has the full game on disc(s). Flight Sim and Devil May Cry 5 SE are 2 examples. 

And of course as @jason1637 pointed out, some games just barely has anything on the disc rendering the disc completely useless without internet. So to add to that Forza Horizon 5 is one of those games. Apparently it has to do with the base (VCR) Xbox One unable to read blu-ray discs above 50gb, so games with big storage cannot fit both versions or can't even fit one on a disc. That would mean publishers need to use two 50gb discs and even then it may not be enough (I could be wrong on this, but it would make a lot of sense).

So what's the best option? Well for games that can fit both on one disc or two should be 1 case. For those can't just separate the 2 versions in 2 different physical releases where one has the Xbox One version with the ability to download the Series X version, while the other is the Series X version. So basically what Sony is doing already with PS4/PS5.

Last edited by trasharmdsister12 - on 24 December 2021

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DonFerrari said:

[...]

I would say perhaps you have a very strong bias view based on your own life experiences.

PS: Not to take a potshot at you, but your line of thought is very similar to the one of the MS executives saying Xbox One could sell 1 Billion units. https://www.vg247.com/xbox-one-microsoft-aims-for-1-billion-lifetime-sales-100-million-xbox-360-units

[...]

I have replied separately to the rest of your comments, and now will reply just to your 'non-potshot'.

You appear to have misunderstood Mehdi's comments in that article you linked to (in fairness, the article's author may have misunderstood them as well).  Mehdi suggested the entire market was about 300 million units, and with normal 30% growth that the entire market would grow to 400 million units.  He then suggested that the entire market might grow to a billion units if game consoles take off as set-top-box replacements, not that the Xbox One would sell a billion units.  100% of Mehdi's math appears to be discussing the entire home console market, none of it appears to be predicting Xbox One sales (just the size of the market that the Xbox One's opportunity may lie within).

I also disagree with you that Mehdi's comments about Microsoft's strategy then have any relevance to their strategy now.  Then they saw game consoles morphing into premium priced all-in-one media boxes (PS was also increasing their media capabilities in the timeframe that he was making his comments, though they promoted it far less than Microsoft did).  While both PS and Xbox have significant media capabilities, they're now doubling-down on marketing consoles primary as gaming machines.  In Microsoft's case, they see the growth opportunity as a combination of lower introductory prices and game streaming to consoles.  Other than speaking about each as opportunities to grow the market, I don't see any similarity in the strategy then vs. now.

Last edited by scrapking - on 07 December 2021

Sogreblute said:
jason1637 said:

Okay. So I have a physical copy of Far Cry 6 for Xbox. I deleted the game and put it back into my Xbox. Here is what I was treated with.

Then I proceeded to upgrade it. And see this.

As you can see from the image 575 MB of the game came from the disc while as 85 GB is downloading from my internet connection.

It's not only a Ubisoft thing.

Halo Infinite disc doesn't include the game.

CoD Vanguard cant be played without a a big patch

https://support.activision.com/content/atvi/support/web/en/vanguard/articles/vanguard-installation-and-setup.html

These are 3 of the biggest games of the year. Unfortnutaley I don't have any other physical games besides Far Cry ( I got rid of all my physical games last year) so I cant test it with other games but the last physical game I remember not having to downloading a huge update to play was Evolve and that game came out early last gen.

Some Smart Delivery games only have the Xbox One version on the disc. Metro Exodus and Resident Evil 8 are just 2 examples. Some games actually has both versions on the disc or has 2 discs. It's a game by game basis and unfortunately the case doesn't mention if an internet connection is required, so we don't know what games has both versions on disc(s). At least from what I hear all Xbox Series X games except COD has the full game on disc(s). Flight Sim and Devil May Cry 5 SE are 2 examples. 

And of course as @jason1637 pointed out, some games just barely has anything on the disc rendering the disc completely useless without internet. So to add to that Forza Horizon 5 is one of those games. Apparently it has to do with the base (VCR) Xbox One unable to read blu-ray discs above 50gb, so games with big storage cannot fit both versions or can't even fit one on a disc. That would mean publishers need to use two 50gb discs and even then it may not be enough (I could be wrong on this, but it would make a lot of sense).

So what's the best option? Well for games that can fit both on one disc or two should be 1 case. For those can't just separate the 2 versions in 2 different physical releases where one has the Xbox One version with the ability to download the Series X version, while the other is the Series X version. So basically what Sony is doing already with PS4/PS5.

Ah so maybe its on a game to game basis then. Because even when I played Xbox One a lot of games close to the end of the generation required large internet downloads for the game to be played. So not every game had data on disk or can be played without a internet download but like you mentioned Flight Sim and DMC5 are examples of games that come with he full package on disc.

Last edited by trasharmdsister12 - on 24 December 2021

src said:
jason1637 said:

Most games have very little or none of the data on discs. These day one patches are the majority of the game.

Delusional. Humour us and prove it then

Unfortunately there's some truth to it.

XBSS is only the beginning of entry models.

Soon enough it'll be $99 for the XBSY console.

As in, 'why would you expect anything in the box?'

Comes with barebones streaming hardware, and a controller.

Smallest console ever. Best selling console, ever. You heard it here first.



Farsala said:

Yeah, I can't find stock for an Xbox or a Playstation. But what do I have? A PC.

So I have been playing Halo Infinite and other MS games without an Xbox. At this point I don't really need one.

For sure, anyone with a good gaming PC doesn't need a console.  Traditionally consoles were simpler to set up and use, and were cheaper to purchase.  Yet PC gaming offered top-tier performance, and cheaper games.  So for anyone open to both consoles and PC, it was a debate between cheaper hardware vs. cheaper software, with exclusives being a wildcard as that forced you to buy certain hardware.

These days hardly anything is truly exclusive anymore if you're a PC gamer, as PC gets pretty much everything (immediately with Microsoft, a little later on with Sony, and eventually with Nintendo even if only via emulation).  So for anyone comfortable with the PC side of things, that's an advantage for the PC.

For me, despite all that, I went Xbox this generation.  Why?  Because the Series S was just so damn powerful, and so damn cheap.  No gaming PC for the same price as the Series S could come even close to its capability.  And the huge software cost advantage for PC is largely mitigated by the fact that I'm completely content with Game Pass so far since it came out.  Game Pass Ultimate gives me Games With Gold, Xbox Game Pass, and EA Play.  That combo has been enough for me to stop buying games entirely.  Yes, it would be even cheaper if I went with PC Game Pass (which also includes EA Play), but the hardware cost would be a LOT higher while the software subscription cost would be only moderately cheaper.

So bringing this back on topic, I think Game Pass being so darn inexpensive is an advantage in some price-sensitive markets.  Though, admittedly, only the markets that are both price sensitive and have reasonably priced home internet, as some have sensibly pointed out.



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EricHiggin said:

Unfortunately there's some truth to it.

XBSS is only the beginning of entry models.

Soon enough it'll be $99 for the XBSY console.

As in, 'why would you expect anything in the box?'

Comes with barebones streaming hardware, and a controller.

Smallest console ever. Best selling console, ever. You heard it here first.

You could well be right.  You could, in fact, be so right that it invalidates the premise of the thread.

Or maybe the best-selling consoles of all time will be a smart TVs with Game Pass streaming apps in them, if enough people sign up that way.



Sogreblute said:

Some Smart Delivery games only have the Xbox One version on the disc. Metro Exodus and Resident Evil 8 are just 2 examples. Some games actually has both versions on the disc or has 2 discs. It's a game by game basis and unfortunately the case doesn't mention if an internet connection is required, so we don't know what games has both versions on disc(s). At least from what I hear all Xbox Series X games except COD has the full game on disc(s). Flight Sim and Devil May Cry 5 SE are 2 examples. 

And of course as @jason1637 pointed out, some games just barely has anything on the disc rendering the disc completely useless without internet. So to add to that Forza Horizon 5 is one of those games. Apparently it has to do with the base (VCR) Xbox One unable to read blu-ray discs above 50gb, so games with big storage cannot fit both versions or can't even fit one on a disc. That would mean publishers need to use two 50gb discs and even then it may not be enough (I could be wrong on this, but it would make a lot of sense).

So what's the best option? Well for games that can fit both on one disc or two should be 1 case. For those can't just separate the 2 versions in 2 different physical releases where one has the Xbox One version with the ability to download the Series X version, while the other is the Series X version. So basically what Sony is doing already with PS4/PS5.

Correct, the base (VCR) Xbox One, the PS4, and the PS4 Pro can only read BD discs up to 50 GB.  Only the PS5, the One S, the One X, and the Series X can read larger than 50 GB BD discs.  The One S and One X were upgraded past the 50 GB limit kind of by accident, they were actually upgraded to read UHD movie discs, and the ability to read larger data discs is just a happy accident.  But one they can't take advantage of while also having the disc readable in the base Xbox One.  Sony elected not to do that upgrade, not even for the PS4 Pro, until the PS5.

But as previously mentioned, even if the entire game is on the disc at launch, patches/upgrades over time will render more and more of the data on the disc irrelevant anyway.  And you usually can't play the game (at least not while online, and especially not for multiplayer) without installing all the updates first.

I don't see much advantage to separate Xbox One and Series X versions of games at retail, when developers regularly keep updating/patching the game after release, often for years.  I mean, even if the launch version of a game like R6: Siege is entirely on the disc, the current version of the game bears very little resemblance to it.  Perhaps the one and only time having the entire game on disc is actually valuable from a game preservation point of view would be an anniversary/GotY version where the game is pretty much end-of-life from a software development point of view, that disc might be playable for the long-term without reams of downloads.

If the game can even fit on any disc, given UHD discs top out at about 100 GB, and there are more than a few games that are 100+ GB.  I guess you could put multiple discs in the collection, but that drives up costs (less so for the discs, actually, moreso for the packaging) and isn't a common or popular option with publishers anymore.

Back on topic.  As more gamers go all-digital, and especially as game streaming becomes more of a thing, the small size and low cost of the Series S suddenly makes a lot more sense.  When I stream a game to my Series S, I'm streaming the Series X version of the game.  Generally the Series X version in performance mode, as it's limited to 1080p@60, mind you, and with some compression artifacting.  But that's pretty cool, and that experience will probably improve over time.  Presuming good latency, I can see the day where streaming the game to a Series S offers higher fidelity than playing the game locally.  Then there's the wildcard of AI-enhanced upscaling.  All of the above lends itself to Phil Spencer's comments that the Series X will sell better initially, but that the Series S will sell better over time.



src said:

Bad analysis.

Demographics are a thing. You can't expect India's population to be buying $400 game consoles when they don't even buy $400 phones. You have completely missed the economic demographics of each population. The gaming population right now in India is miniscule, and depends on the economic growth of the population in that country, which will take more than 5 years. Same with the other developing nations mentioned.

Furthermore, a digital only console is DEAD in these countries where internet infrastructure is not reliable, costly and in some cases not even built out.

I agree that a digital-only console won't be popular in places where internet isn't reliable, is costly, or doesn't exist.

That said, a miniscule portion of a 1.4 billion person population might still do more to move the needle on global console sales than, say, Canada or Australia does.

I'm not sure what $400 game console you're referring to in a discussion about the Series S, though.  It's $300 USD (generally the default "$" is the USD, unless specified otherwise).



VAMatt said:

The problem I see with this analysis is that while the OP correctly points out that we often view these things from a Western perspective and that clouds our judgment, it makes a similar mistake of viewing things through a lens of hardware ownership.

You know what takes up less space than a Series S? The cell phone or laptop that you already own. You know what cost less than a series S? Buying nothing but a controller. And it appears to me that that's what Microsoft is banking on taking hold in the developing world. They are working on cloud gaming. They've done it in a much more intelligent way than Google, in that they have started it as a secondary option for people that are already in the Xbox ecosystem. But, it is very clear that streaming is coming on, and Microsoft is at the forefront of that.  I imagine over the next five years there will be a lot of people subscribed to Gamepass that do not own an Xbox or a gaming rig.

So, while I won't say there's zero chance that the Series S ends up as the best selling console, I will say that I don't think Microsoft is trying to make that happen. They're trying to make XCloud the most popular way to play games, thereby eliminating the need for dedicated gaming hardware (beyond a controller).

Further, since Nintendo and Sony both still seem to be focused on selling hardware, it seems unlikely that Microsoft would beat them in that game. They're not even playing that game.  

Fair enough that mobile devices will be preferable in some areas, no question.  And I agree with you.  Right now Microsoft has Ultimate which has three components (Xbox, PC, and streaming).  But below Ultimate they only have two options, Xbox-only pricing or PC-only pricing.  The obvious missing piece is a streaming-only pricing option.  I expect this to come if and when xCloud streaming exits beta, though.

At that point there are new variables such as xCloud streaming apps in smart TVs.  So I agree with you that Microsoft isn't even playing the same game as Sony and Nintendo.  I 100% agree.

But they're still making consoles, and they made the Series S as a priced-to-move console.  Adjusted for inflation, have we ever had a competitive next-gen console launch as cheap as the Series S?  Certainly not something as capable as it is.  And it has the advantage that it's set up for streaming (which reduces the amount of on-board storage it needs), while still being able to store games locally (for places that might have cheap/decent enough internet, but it's not as reliable as it could be) so it's kind of hedging its bets as to whether it'll be used primarily for streaming, primarily for on-board storage, or for a healthy mix of the two.  And when you're talking bigger markets like India and Brazil, even a small increase in the size of the markets might end up moving more dedicated home consoles than a country like Japan (where handhelds are now dominant instead) or a country like Canada or Australia (where the populations are very low).



jason1637 said:
src said:

Delusional. Humour us and prove it then

Okay. So I have a physical copy of Far Cry 6 for Xbox. I deleted the game and put it back into my Xbox. Here is what I was treated with.

Then I proceeded to upgrade it. And see this.

As you can see from the image 575 MB of the game came from the disc while as 85 GB is downloading from my internet connection.

It's not only a Ubisoft thing.

Halo Infinite disc doesn't include the game.

CoD Vanguard cant be played without a a big patch

https://support.activision.com/content/atvi/support/web/en/vanguard/articles/vanguard-installation-and-setup.html

These are 3 of the biggest games of the year. Unfortnutaley I don't have any other physical games besides Far Cry ( I got rid of all my physical games last year) so I cant test it with other games but the last physical game I remember not having to downloading a huge update to play was Evolve and that game came out early last gen.

Try doing this without connecting to the Internet. It may be your Xbox sees that your internet connection is quicker than HDD speed.

Most physical discs should be playable with no internet connection unless the box specifically says internet connection is required.

Obviously day 1 patches require Internet. A game unplayable without a day 1 patch is extremely bad practice such as Cyberpunk.

scrapking said:
src said:

This is incredibly wrong.

Game data is on disc, which is why install does not require internet connection. Only patches do.

It's not incredibly wrong, it's very much correct for many titles.  It's been that way for a while now.  And how could it be otherwise?  Last-gen you had 100-150 GB games coming on 50 GB discs.

Even in the rare circumstance where the entire game is on the disc at launch, by the time the game is several years old the patches will have replaced more and more of the core game, meaning over time less and less of the data on the disc will be relevant to a reinstall.  Increasingly, the disc is just a dongle to prove you own a licence for the game.  Increasingly, your install/re-install situation often doesn't change much whether you have the disc or not.

Hell, the Nintendo Switch has CARTRIDGES without all of the game(s) on them now.  GTA Trilogy has only 2 of the three games on the cartridge, as but one example.  Some Switch carts are little more than a dongle to entitle you to download the game.  Scott the Woz has an entire video on that topic here:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=moj2wnzvQjY

The base game should be playable without Internet. Switch cartridges have lower storage size (32GB).

scrapking said:
src said:

Bad analysis.

Demographics are a thing. You can't expect India's population to be buying $400 game consoles when they don't even buy $400 phones. You have completely missed the economic demographics of each population. The gaming population right now in India is miniscule, and depends on the economic growth of the population in that country, which will take more than 5 years. Same with the other developing nations mentioned.

Furthermore, a digital only console is DEAD in these countries where internet infrastructure is not reliable, costly and in some cases not even built out.

I agree that a digital-only console won't be popular in places where internet isn't reliable, is costly, or doesn't exist.

That said, a miniscule portion of a 1.4 billion person population might still do more to move the needle on global console sales than, say, Canada or Australia does.

I'm not sure what $400 game console you're referring to in a discussion about the Series S, though.  It's $300 USD (generally the default "$" is the USD, unless specified otherwise).

Nope. Some of the best selling consoles in India sold like 100k. You need to educate yourself on living cost.

The avg salary in India is $400 a month. The US equivalent would be a game console costing nearly $5000.

Last edited by trasharmdsister12 - on 24 December 2021