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StaceyPowers

Why does it cost money to game online on consoles?

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I have a question that I feel like probably has an obvious answer, but I don’t know what it is. Why must one pay for a subscription like PS Plus to game online at all on a console? I get the need to pay for servers, but sometimes one does that directly through a game (i.e. Minecraft). So why must one also pay for PS Plus for this purpose?

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It may be some kind of compatibility issue. A quick analogy would be like trying to play an Xbox game on a PlayStation. Not gonna work without something in the middle to make them compatible. Also it may be like internet where you have to pay a fee to have the service.

Most likely though, it's just plain old greed. Someone more educated on this whole thing could probably offer better answers than anything I gave.

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I don’t think people are “okay” with it... it’s just, that’s the only option to play console multiplayer. Similar to how nobody likes paying Comcast or whoever is in your area for access to the internet... but, you just do.

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I would love for it to be free because I think it's a joke that we have to pay to play online. But since I primarily play multiplayer, I have to pay for PS Plus. The worst thing about it is that PS used to have this for free but then decided to copy Microsoft and go down the paid online route.

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I think it would not be a joke anymore as the blockchain games are asking for the investment in NFT characters before you can play those games. Soon it will be norm and people will miss one time payment type games.

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Beats the hell out of me why you have to pay for a subscription on all three console platforms just to play games online. Quite frankly, I find this inexcusable and downright ridiculous, greedy and just an all round scummy practice.

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It's because they can. They don't need to, considering playing on PC is free. More games are becoming cross platform, so the idea of paying to play on one versus the other seems dumb to me. The fact we're buying and playing their games on their consoles should be enough. 

But, it's rumored that Xbox may be dropping it and just supporting gamepass ultimate going forward.  Playstation could afford to drop it too. They could do something similar to Xbox and just have that he the only fee. 

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On 1/30/2022 at 3:40 AM, Empire said:

I don’t think people are “okay” with it... it’s just, that’s the only option to play console multiplayer. Similar to how nobody likes paying Comcast or whoever is in your area for access to the internet... but, you just do.

Agreed. I'm not sure if anyone is okay with it. Sadly that is the reality of online gaming. 
They have subscriptions because they can.  This is downright ridiculous, greedy, and just an all around scumbag practice in my opinion.

 

 

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You could argue that they are providing a service that has a cost to then.  They need servers, software and what not to host online game and for features like voice chat.  With that being said I'm not really convinced they need to, I mean PC games and even the PlayStation 3 didn't need to charge for it. 

 

I think you get enough value out of PS+ and XBox Live Gold that the fee doesn't really bother me.

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I actually think this question is more easily answered not by saying why consoles charge, but by understanding why PC services don't.

 

When you play a game online, it not as simple as playing a game through the internet. The internet is the physical part of the system. The fibre optics, cables, satellites and so on that connect all these devices together. This physical network needs more than just itself to function, there is also software that allows people and devices to re-encode whatever information a person or device wants to transmit along the physical known as the internet. That is what is known as a Wide Area Network (WAN).

 

There is a number of different WAN's out there. More specifically, when you access online services on a PlayStation, the WAN that is accessed is called PSN or PlayStation Network. On Xbox, the WAN used is Xbox Live. These two were built and are being maintained by Sony and Microsoft respectively at cost to them. They own them, so like it or not they have a right to charge for people to use them. Whether they should and how much they charge is open to debate, but it is what it is.

 

Playing online games on a PC, like through Steam or EGS or whatever, is a little bit different because the wide area network they use is called the World Wide Web. No single person nor entity can own this WAN, only bits and pieces of it, more specifically the domains of websites being hosted on that network. Each little piece of the World Wide Web get's maintained by those that own that little piece of it, so just like how no one person or entity can own the whole thing, it also means it is not the responsibility of any single person nor entity to maintain the whole thing, not like PSN or Xbox Live. So you see that Steam, EGS and other PC based game services can't charge you to use thier network (and trust me, this is the ONLY reason) simply because they don't own that network. 

Edited by Shagger
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For the fact that Sony provided a network coverage on their own and not the www type, same as Microsoft with their Xbox Live, they needed the subscription payment in order to maintain their own network server and the services they provide. But it's way too much, the price should be lowered in order for average gamers to enjoy playing online games. 

Edited by Head_Hunter
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6 hours ago, Shagger said:

I actually think this question is more easily answered not by saying why consoles charge, but by understanding why PC services don't.

 

When you play a game online, it not as simple as playing a game through the internet. The internet the physical part of the system. The fibre optics, cables satellites and so on that connect all these decides together. This physical network need more than just itself to function, there is also software that allows people and devices to re-encode whatever information a person or device wants to transmit along the physical known as he internet. That is what is known as a Wide Area Network (WAN).

 

There is a number of different WAN's out there. Moe specially, when access online services on a PlayStation, the WAN that is accessed is called PSN or PlayStation Network. ON Xbox, the WAN used is Xbox Live. These two were built and being maintained by Sony and Microsoft respectively at cost to them. The own them, so like it or not they have a right to charge for people to use them. Whether they should and how much they charge is open to debate, but it is what it is.

 

Playing online games on a PC, like through Steam or EGS or whatever, is little bit different because the wide area network they use is called the World Wide Web. No single person nor entity can own this WAN, only bits and pieces of it, more superficially the domains of websites being hosted in that network. Each little piece for the World Wide Web get's maintained by those that own that little piece of it, so just like how no one person or entity can own the whole thing, it also means it is not the responsibility of a single person nor entity to maintain the whole thing, not like PSN or Xbox Live. So you see that Steam, EGS and other PC based game services can't charge you to use thier network (and trust me, this is the ONLY reason) is simply because they don't own that network. 

You're spot on with your assessment on this and if completely agree with you on every part of it. If they did own the network completely, they will definitely be charging for it because these guys never say no to making more money off of us. 

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