Xbox One games will be region-locked

Microsoft's next-gen console to keep games from one region from running on another region's hardware

Any hope that Microsoft's next console would be importer-friendly has been squashed, as Digital Trends has received confirmation that Xbox One will prevent software of one region from playing on the hardware of another.

"Similar to the movie and music industry, games must meet country-specific regulatory guidelines before they are cleared for sale," a Microsoft representative told the site. "We will continue to work with our partners to follow these guidelines with Xbox One."

Like most home consoles, Microsoft's Xbox and Xbox 360 were also region-locked. There is one current exception, as Sony did not mandate region locks for PlayStation 3 games.

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Latest comments (7)

Rick Lopez Illustrator, Graphic Designer 6 years ago
More good news for XboxOne... :/
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Morville O'Driscoll Blogger & Critic 6 years ago
Why not leave it for the publishers to decide, like with BluRays, or the PS3?

In any event, I treat region-locked games like I do DVDs. I'll buy the ones I like, but, given I harbor dreams of emigrating to another country, I will gladly copy/pirate them when I do eventually move. I wonder how many more are like me?
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Rick Lopez Illustrator, Graphic Designer 6 years ago
If you move to another country they probably expect you to buy everything again.

Basically the way i feel... is that the entertainment industry makes it increasingly harder to "not want to pirate". Its such a heavy ball and chain that comes attached to a legally purchased item. That piracy becomes more attractive, not because you dont have the money or want to pay, but because its less of a hastle.

This is probably a stupid question, but since the system has to be online and it verifies your content every 24 hours...I wonder if Digital content is region locked. Say i purchase a game or movie digitally in the united states, get a british girlfriend, get married, move to england... take my american XboxOne to england, Log in with my american account in england... can I still play my digital content. Or will it sense me logging in from another country and prohibit me from playing content that isnt legal there?

Edited 2 times. Last edit by Rick Lopez on 29th May 2013 2:26am

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Show all comments (7)
Andrew Goodchild Studying development, Train2Game6 years ago
Not sure it was a good example saying it was similar to the music industry, when CDs and MP3s are not region locked. and I can buy CDs off Amazon.
if Microsoft's bet on HD-DVD had paid off, movies would be region free too. although perhaps blu-ray winning shows how important that was to people at the time.
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Greg Wilcox Creator, Destroy All Fanboys! 6 years ago
Oddly enough, there are a number of Xbox 360 games that are region free (Risen, Kane & Lynch 2, Kingdom Under Fire: Circle of Doom and a bunch of others you can find on Play-Asia and other import sites), so this is going to hurt folks who do import games from time to time. Of course, Nintendo has had region-locked games on their home consoles for a while (and the methods some have gone through to play certain Wii titles is pretty extreme and not all that cheap), so it's not as if MS is doing anything unusual here.

That said, I'm not sure if Sonyhas kept the region-free thing going on the PS4 (anyone? Bueller? I'm too busy/lazy to look this up) and at the end of the day, given Microsoft's seemingly US-centric focus with the new console (as in they "KNOW" the bro and granny crowd isn't importing anything unless they order some sort of ethnic food to go with their game and TV time) seems to fit here.

Oh well.
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Paul Jace Merchandiser 6 years ago
Not surprising but I still wish it was region free. I have imported a small handful of 360 titles over the years because, as Greg pointed out, around a quarter of the 360's Japanese titles are indeed region free. You just need to look up one of the guides to find out which titles are locked and which ones aren't.
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Samuel Verner Game Designer 6 years ago
haha... not a single day without a negative news about the xbox one. i am so glad that i am part of the glorious pc gamer master race. :-)
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