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Community The Physical VS Digital debate.

Mistershine.

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Jan 20, 2018
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Being able to get a game to download while I'm driving home is awesome.
You can do that with physical on the xbox, if you use the app you can push install games you don't own.

As far as physical goes, most games require huge day one patches now anyway. Resident evil village only uses 187MB from the disc and 37GB download when you install it.
 

SteveWorks

Member
Apr 7, 2020
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I mostly buy digital on PSN, but today I bought Resident Evil Village for £35 for the ps5. It’s a shame such deals are near impossible on digital platforms.
 

ChuckeRearmed

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Jan 31, 2018
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Last time I bought a game physically was - I think - GTA 5 for Xbox 360. Since then I never purchased anything physically.
All those physical cases and disks just take space and that's it. In fact with old disc versions you are less likely to play those games again because they might not be even compatible with the modern systems without patches and updates anyway. Especially on PC.
 
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Apr 20, 2015
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I went digital for the ps4 and back to physical for ps5.

I impulse purchased games way more. So easy to read an OT get hyped then click a few buttons and bam I'm in.

I found I beat a lot less games when going digital, like with netflix I would scroll this never ending list and could never settle on something I wanted to play.

I also like showing off my games on a shelf.
This.
 

sircaw

has bigger MS points balance than reaction score.
Jul 3, 2019
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A local pond.
Digital all the way, less clutter, and just all-around convenient having all your stuff in one place.

The number of times i rebought diablo 2 because i lost a disk, i am done with that.
 
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Fuz

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Jun 8, 2009
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Physical was nice back when physical games were more than just empty cases with a disc in it that has often half the data missing.

back when games had well designed manuals, some extras and ALL of the game in the physical release, that was when it really made sense to still get them. Nowadays I couldn't give a damn about 99% of all physical releases, partly because of the convenience of digital games.


This is not a collector's edition. It's the standard edition.

EDIT: The picture is atually missing the cloth map.
 
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Birdo

Banned
Jun 12, 2019
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Physical has one huge benefit over digital. It's basically a licence that you own.

If you lose your PSN/XB account for whatever reason (It's easier than you think, especially with Sony's inactivity rule). You also lose the licence to all you digital games. But if you have physical, you can use them on a new account.
 

RedWhiteBlue

Banned
Jul 5, 2019
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Unless you are selling and trading physical is just a bit pointless.

The worry for me with digital is how access with work in the future.

I'd often watch an old movie from the 80s or 90s but I wonder how it will go if I fancy a play through of God of War on some lazy weekend 20 or 30 years from now.

Funny having a bookshelf at home where I can pick something up and have a read but engaging similarly with my gaming collection means thinking "I might play that tomorrow so I will let it download the updates overnight".

I assume that streaming will solve this to some degree.

(Of course, put streaming services under the control of an authoritarian government in the future and we'll all be longing for the days of physical copies.)
 
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Guilty_AI

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Apr 12, 2020
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The biggest problem with physical i had in the past was availability. Where i live, the games i wanted weren't always available.
I do worry about things like owning a license or not, or at least making sure i'll have access to the game in the future, which is why i'll always go for GOG whenever possible.

Nowadays, unless you're planning to resell or buying second-handed, i don't think physical is worth it anymore with all the day 1 patchs, installation requirements, etc.
 
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Nitty_Grimes

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Aug 4, 2015
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I’m not paying £70 for something when I can get it for £50 to £55. Sometimes cheaper still.
 

Relativ9

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Nov 18, 2012
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I'd love it if physical made sense, but these days, with DLC, patches, ect...there is little to no advantage to have a game be physical.
 

Krizalidx11

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Mar 18, 2021
474
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Physical sucks, if the disc gets scratched and doesn't run the games no more it's useless and you'll pay again for the game, also piling up boxes of them in the room is not a good idea


Digital all the way
 
Oct 7, 2019
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Physical becomes pointless when you have to install the games anyway and then insert the disk to play them. Plus the price drops so, so fast on digital your resale value is shit.
I sold my copy of Assassin's Creed Valhalla for PS5 for about as much as I bought it for after 2 months 🤷‍♂️
 
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kmkaks

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Apr 28, 2021
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Not being a day one buyer, I choose the game medium based purely on price. If I can find the game for cheaper on disk, I just get the disk.

Another cool thing I recently discovered with xbox is that, if a game you own physically is on gamepass, you no longer need to insert the disk to play the game.
 
Oct 7, 2019
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New gen premium not so many used games or discounts yet.
Well, it's a great reason for me or anyone else to buy physical games for it then, right now? Or just a great reason to have the disc version or the console, so you can have the option now or in the future.
 

TKOFromTokyo

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Jul 20, 2020
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Physical, it’s cheaper, I can resell it, and I like displaying my games.

I was able to buy MM and Spider-Man Remastered online at launch for $40, new on OfferUp.
 
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ZywyPL

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Nov 27, 2018
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Digital all the way, physical copies have absolutely no benefits other than 2nd hand market.
 

Quezacolt

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You can do that with physical on the xbox, if you use the app you can push install games you don't own.

As far as physical goes, most games require huge day one patches now anyway. Resident evil village only uses 187MB from the disc and 37GB download when you install it.
This is BS. I disconnected my ps5 from the net on purpose to try this, and the entire game installed from the disk. Seriously, people should stop with the misinformation about how physical disks dont contain the entire game, only a very small minority of games do that, and mostly are ones focsued on online play.
 
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Mistershine.

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This is BS. I disconnected my ps5 from the net on purpose to try this, and the entire game installed from the disk. Seriously, people should stop with the misinformation about how physical disks dont contain the entire game, only a very small minority of games do that, and mostly are ones focsued on online play.
I didn't say the disc didn't contain the entire game, I said the day one patch was so big that it negated everything apart from 187MB. Fucking plum.
 

quest

Not Banned from OT
Jul 17, 2004
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I think for my area a mix is perfect. Physical for short term games to save money. Digital for games I'll play for months or years like a Diablo.
 

Quezacolt

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I didn't say the disc didn't contain the entire game, I said the day one patch was so big that it negated everything apart from 187MB. Fucking plum.
The day one patch was only 400MB. I know it, because i did download it after checking if the game worked fine without it.
 

Genx3

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Jun 23, 2019
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As long as both exists I'm fine.

I don't look forward to a day where there is no more physical copies to compete with digital.
 

peter42O

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Aug 9, 2014
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For me to decide if im buying a game physically or digitally depends on three things -

1. Will the game have post launch content and expansions?
2. Has this content been revealed and announced before the base game gets released?
3. Based on the two above, it comes down to if I believe the expansions and post launch content will be worth buying and playing?

For example, I have bought the gold digital edition for Immortals Fenyx Rising and Assassin's Creed Valhalla because I knew that I would be into both games and would want to play the expansions. On the other side, I bought Watch Dogs Legion physically as the post launch content didn't interest me at all and the base game was better than Watch Dogs 2 but not better than the original for me so im happy that I passed on buying it digitally. I bought Spider Man: Miles Morales physically because there is no post launch expansions or content and just picked up Resident Evil VIII: Village yesterday from GameStop as I know what the DLC will be post launch and just like Resident Evil VII, I have zero interest in it.

So basically, it comes down to if im going to be playing the game over the long term as opposed to just playing through the game to completion and then trading it in. My next disc based purchase will be Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart. Now, with a new character being introduced with Rivet, I can easily see there being post launch expansions for the game but Sony/Insomniac would have to reveal it before the base game gets released. If not and there is, oh well, it won't be bought or played. I make my decisions based on what I know at launch or pre-launch. Anything afterwards, it's already too late.

Thus far for the Xbox Series X/PlayStation 5 generation, my game purchases are as follows -

- Watch Dogs Legion (disc/base game completed and traded in)
- Assassin's Creed Valhalla (digital/gold edition)
- Immortals Fenyx Rising (digital/gold edition)
- Cyberpunk 2077 (digital/base game)
- Marvel's Spider Man: Miles Morales (PS5/disc/base game completed and traded in)
- Outriders (digital/base game)
- Resident Evil VIII: Village (disc/base game/currently playing/will trade in once completed)
- Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart (PS5/as of now, it's looking like a disc based purchase)

That's pretty much how I decide if im buying a game physically or digitally.
 

Soulja

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Jan 4, 2016
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Digital is great but if I can save £20 buying the physical version then I will most definitely be buying it on disc and if its a one run though mind of game then I'll be selling it on once I'm done. The only time I buy digital games, are when they so cheap that even a tight bastard like myself can't say no.
 

Crimson_Fate

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Jun 6, 2013
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I like Digital better and was almost exclusively digital through the PS4 up until Sony forced all purchases through the PS store. and now with the $70 starting price for PS5 I won't buy any digital games. Maybe I will start again if Sony looses their lawsuit.
 

Old_and_Slow

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Oct 8, 2020
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Physical copies are the way to go. As long as they keep making them I will keep buying them. Part of it is having something tangible for the money spent. Honestly though having the cases displayed on my shelf just plain feels good! In a small way physical also helps with game preservation since the big publishers of the world seem to have no interest (unless of course it can be packaged and sold again every 6 years or so). Actual games also have a better chance of working without a hitch when the console becomes a legacy item. PS3 is close to having its legacy performance tested and I'm hoping my games all run ok.

That being said I have quite a few digital games on console and PC. Most of my digital games were the only way to get them. I do treat digital purchases differently- a digital purchase is only for a game I plan on playing right now or very soon. If I pickup a disc It might be for a sequel where I haven't even played the previous, or made by a developer I like but missed on release. Basically no speculating with digital purchases for me. If I'm going to turn my money into something that has no future monetary value, then I'm gonna make sure I get something I really will enjoy.
 

theHFIC

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Aug 22, 2014
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I still prefer physical but as a collector for older consoles as well, over the past few years I have come to accept that digital or physical any game past the PS2 era will be lost to time at some point.

Too many moving parts to fail in the consoles and too much reliance on the internet in its current form for updates, activation, etc. So I am still in for physical, but I don’t plan on being able to play those PS4 discs or Switch cards in 15 - 20 years.
 
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Oct 2, 2019
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Resi 8 is £47 at The Game Collection.

How much is the digital version?
I don't know as I don't have that in my country, but i finally decided to get it digitally when I found out the only digital store willing to ship it is asking for the equivalent of 82! So i said screw it it's 62 on PSN go fuck yourself and i'm happy with my purchase.
 
Aug 29, 2007
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I do digital because I'm lazy. I have nothing against physical. My only gripe is that digital should be cheaper than physical as I'm not getting a case or box to show off. Which is lame. Same with movies. Retailers suck.
 
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Riky

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As far as physical goes, most games require huge day one patches now anyway. Resident evil village only uses 187MB from the disc and 37GB download when you install it.

Christ. So if you insert the game into a console without an internet connection what actually can you play? Nothing?

If so then you don't really own the game at all.
 

sn0man

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Nov 23, 2013
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I mostly stick to physical in part because it encourages me to actually play one game at a time and finish them. I've made some mistakes, though, like buying MK11 in physical format when digital would have been better - for some genres like fighting games you really want to be able to have them available at a moment's notice without having to get up and change discs.
It’s an extremely interesting perspective you’ve enunciated and I hadn’t thought of it.

I kind of go the other way. Physical media for console only for multiplayer games. A console in my mind is this living room or couch experience. Console is multiplayer by nature and to be shared regardless of what’s going on outside those four walls. At this point I basically only buy local multiplayer and/or console exclusives.

Otherwise the PC works and can be upgraded independent of the execution of the software. It’s digital only and I just treat it as part of the modern world.
 

sn0man

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Christ. So if you insert the game into a console without an internet connection what actually can you play? Nothing?

If so then you don't really own the game at all.
The death of physical is mostly exaggerated on consoles. The first party software for Nintendo and Sony just kinda works for the most part.
 
Jan 29, 2019
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What first brought me to "digital" was movie and software piracy--convenience because often I would buy the games I really cared about (most of the games I ever got this way just sat there, like my Steam library does).

So convenience is a major factor, I am not a caveman walking around to take things and put them into stuff to be happy--I just sit and press buttons and the joy come to me! I'm a super human.... and I'm super lazy!

+ I don't care for displaying my collection in my living room or elsewhere, this is for old games (I display my Genesis with a few cherished games for its library).
 

dcx4610

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I have a strange system. On Xbox, since it has the best backwards compatibility, I decided to go physical on Xbox, 360 and XSX games. But, I only go physical on big, AAA single player games. Basically games I'm going to focus on and won't be disc swapping.

For indie and small games, I'll get them digital. Also, any sports, racing or other quick experience games where I'd pop in and out and just want a quick game, I'll go digital.

Sony I'm all digital since I only get exclusives on their systems and since I keep my games in a separate room, digital is easier to deal with.

Finally, PC I'm obviously digital but because games are so cheap, I will double dip on games I already own just to have them in my Steam library and to play them again with a different experience.

Basically I still like physical but it's for specific titles and really just to collect and look good on a shelf. I also consider it as backups in case those games ever disappear digitally.
 

Quezacolt

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Christ. So if you insert the game into a console without an internet connection what actually can you play? Nothing?

If so then you don't really own the game at all.
What he said is false, and this thing is exagerated for 95% of physical games.
 
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Being good with money = being good with the TIME value of money. The headache of waiting to buy a good deal or sell your games is not worth the hassle if you are gainfully employed with a good job. I could understand this mentality when I was younger and didn't have a job or whatever and had to ask my parents, but as a grown ass man I just couldn't care less about saving a few here and there.

Plus, as gaming is my main hobby, it's actually quite cheap compared to others. I would rather that money go to the developers as much as possible so they can afford to churn out better games.
 
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Bo_Hazem

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I never play my games twice, so digital take no space in my room and easy to reinstall with good internet speeds in case needed.

Physical copies are the best in value to resell them though. I get rid of my old consoles and games and give them all away.
 
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Haggard

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You do not own what you buy digitally, just try to sell your digital "property".....
As long as that's the case I will stay 100% physical.
 
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ReBurn

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I went digital on PS360 once I realized that even with the disc you still have to download the game multiple times until the developer actually finishes it.
 
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Sep 22, 2020
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Resi 8 is £47 at The Game Collection.

How much is the digital version?
I paid £43 digital from CD Keys and got the 6000 MS reward points too which are worth about £5.

I never buy physical anymore. I’m sure in the future digital licenses will get nuked but discs will be coasters then too thanks to the crazy patching that goes on these days.

I just hope some archivist is keeping copies of fully patched console games so I can play them on an emulator on PC in the future when the plug is pulled.