Posted May 14, 2013 by Amy in Features

A Digital Future Ain’t Looking Too Bright


A 12 GB download? Ouch – that’s gonna hurt.

An all-digital future seems an inevitable step. Gaming companies want to cut down costs, maximize profits, and eliminate that whole pesky buying and selling used games issue. But let me tell you, my friend, an all digital future ain’t looking too bright from where I’m sitting right now. I don’t mind digital games, at all. While I love borrowing games and handing off ones I no longer want, there are definite advantages to digital: less mess, instant delivery, and (usually) they cost less. But there’s an elephant in the room on this whole issue of going completely digital, and it has stomped all over me in the last few days, leaving a weeping mass of “I just wanna play!”


So, let me give you a little background on what started this whole rant. I’ve been trying to download a game for review, a very common practice often repeated, but this one is different. This is a game that, at 12 GB, generally would have come on a disc in the very near past. Instead, I happily went to download it only to met by several brick walls, the first being a message saying I didn’t have enough disc space. Hmm, that’s never happened before, but I guess I could clear out a few old games, some save files for things I don’t use. No problem, really…What’s that? Still not enough space – um, alright, I guess I can clear out all these PSMini’s, I can play them on the PSP, don’t need them on here…Still not enough space?!? Dammit – DELETE ALL THE THINGS!


Whew, that was stressful! But – YIPPEE! – my game is finally downloading. I’ll just have a quick cup of coffee while that…Holy crap – 515 minutes to download?!? I guess I’ll call it a night, leave the old PS3 running, and hit it in the morning. It’s not like these massive PS3’s overheat or anything…

Morning is here – finally I can check out this game. Sure hope it’s worth the wait and the trouble. I’ll just hit install…but what’s this? Corrupted data? *Tears* It’s okay…I’ll just download it again…good thing that only takes THE ENTIRE DAY. Life goes on, it’s only a game, right? Except when I go back to check on it only to find our internet cut out on hour two, I’m wishing this game *was* on disc, just so I could bite it (only a little bit).


See, the thing is – we don’t have perfect internet, but we do have it pretty good. Considering it’s not cut out in months, I can only conclude that my attempt to download that massive game for the third actually broke the entire internet (sorry world – my bad). After re-booting the router and modem, it is once again downloading (slowly, ever so slowly), but I am honestly quite frightened to check on it. (I don’t think it likes me).


The fact is, there are a lot of people (a lot!) who have far worse internet than we do. And most people, like me, like to have a selection of games on their system at a time, for variety and to allow for varying tastes in a family. If an all digital future is going to work, there are several things that need to happen first – and I’m not seeing a lot of progress, to be honest. Can you imagine the massive memory needed to save your games on the system if they were all digital? Can you imagine the frustrations trying to access your games from a cloud save if your internet is acting up (or, like millions, you just live in a less than urban setting)?


I have rage, beloved readers, and I am in general a peaceful kind of person. Just imagine the carnage that thousands of flying consoles would create in an all digital future. If you won’t consider it for me, do it for the children (they really want to play). What are your thoughts on our inevitable slide towards digital dominance? And does any of you have a prime internet connection I can borrow? There’s this game I want to download…


U.S. Senior Editor & Deputy EIC, @averyzoe on Twitter, mother of 5, gamer, reader, wife to @macanthony, and all-around bad-ass (no, not really)