Apple requiring games to be repurchased for new iPods

Discussion in 'iPod' started by mosx, Sep 18, 2007.

  1. macrumors 65816

    Mar 3, 2007

    Nice move by Apple there.

    This is something I expected from Microsoft or EA. Not from Apple.

    Well, I already sent off an email to to express my feelings.

    I encourage everyone, not just those who purchased games previously, to write and complain about how bad of a move this is.

    To me, this really is no different than being required to repurchase music from iTunes because of a DRM change.
  2. macrumors 601


    Feb 22, 2003
    New Hampshire
    The games are most likely total re-writes and I would expect that you would have to buy a new version for the newest iPods. If the games are important for you, buy new ones. Otherwise, just stick with your old iPod and enjoy the games you currently have.
  3. macrumors 6502a

    Jul 22, 2007
    Southern California
    I sent a letter to iTunes support complaining about the fact that you have to rebuy the games, we will see if they will give me the update for free, I hope so.
  4. macrumors 68000

    Jan 26, 2006
    Whitehouse, OH
    You own the game for the platform you bought on it originally. That would be like demanding that a game company give you a free copy of the PS3 version of a game you already own for the Xbox 360 because you already bought it once.

    It doesn't work that way.
  5. macrumors member

    Sep 14, 2007
    I'd agree except I'm sure apple would oppose us generating our own code to emulate or patch the older gen builds of these games. IPOD is a generic platform. Ye sit does evolve constantly and is constantly blocking out 3rd party apllications. However unless Apple stops supportting one of it's products there has always been compatibility. Appleworks for instance worked on OSIX as well as OSX.
  6. macrumors 6502a

    Jul 22, 2007
    Southern California
    Thats a terrible analogy, MS and Sony are completely different companies. and the hardware is designed totally differently, (Lets say we are talking about Assassins Creed) It's a completely different game on the PS3 compared to the 360 because of the drastic difference in hardware. I own a Gameboy, I also own a Gameboy Color, My Gameboy Games are perfectly compatible in the gameboy color, and the gameboy advance for that matter. My Xbox games are compatable in my 360 (Well some are :( ) and my PS1 and PS2 games are perfectly compatible in a PS3 (If I bought one). There is no reason that apple should not offer free updates to make previous games I purchased work in my new iPod (Its not like I am going to carry my old iPod around just to keep the games). As a consumer it makes no sense that I would have to rebuy all the games I already bought, its not like I have to rebuy all the movies and music I purchased off iTunes every time I get a new iPod.
  7. macrumors 601


    Feb 22, 2003
    New Hampshire
    Check the latest MacRumors story on the iPod teardown. The new iPod contains completely different hardware then the previous iPod version. Thus the comparison between the 360 and PS3 is valid. Apple would have had to do a complete re-write of the games in order to run on the new iPods. I agreed 100% with those that were complaining about the iPhone price drop but I think those that are complaining about paying for the games are wrong. Just pay your $5.00 .

    Note - Your movies and music are files in a standard format while your games are programs that are dependant on your hardware. Comparing the games to the music / video is not a valid comparison.
  8. macrumors member

    Sep 14, 2007
    I agree but like I said earlier I garuntee you apple would sue anyone who would attempt to get their older builds of these games to work on the new classics. If there was another option for games we wouldn't complain, we'd just choose the competition. Apple doesn't provide that option. I on;y own a classic so this doesn't even apply to me. But I see where people are getting taken advantage of.
  9. macrumors newbie

    Oct 21, 2006
    I believe this is more like buying a PS1 game and knowing it will work on a PS2 or a gameboy game for a gameboy advance, except these games are probably going to has the exact same quality on both the new and old iPods
  10. macrumors 601


    Feb 22, 2003
    New Hampshire
    Take a look at the itunes store. The games for the previous iPod version are still for sale. The games are still being sold and are not abandonware so why would Apple make the source code available for the public ? Even if Apple gave away the previous version source code for the games, Apple would need to give you the toolkit so you could re-write and compile the code. Apple would never do that since that would allow people to write their own code to go on the iPod. It sounds great until people start writing malicious code / viruses for your iPod.

    Nobody is being taken advantage of. Just spend the $5.00 and repurchase the game.
  11. macrumors member

    Jul 30, 2007
    Hertford, England
    the wii can play gamecube games
    the PS2 can play PS1 games...
  12. macrumors regular

    Feb 9, 2005
    Milford, MI
    But if you want to play NES, SNES, or N64 games on a Wii, you have to rebuy them... even if... OMG... you already own them!

    I'm irritated that after buying a 6G iPod, my wife can't use the games on the 5.5G iPod I gave her without losing access to all of the stuff she bought in ITMS.
  13. thread starter macrumors 65816

    Mar 3, 2007
    Thats different though.

    First, Nintendo fans will pretty much take whatever Nintendo gives them and act as if its a gift from the almighty. It really doesn't matter what it is, they'll love it. Just look at the prices they're charging! And they wonder why people like me, who were Nintendo fans, won't touch the Wii. I originally paid $50 for that gold Zelda: OoT cartridge and they want me to spend an extra $10 to play through it again?

    Also, a lot of those games are extremely old now. A good amount of NES games are now 20 years old or more. The last SNES game was released well over a decade ago in the US. The last N64 game was something like 5 years ago.

    This is very different from the iPod games. Most of which are far less than a year old an only purchased in recent weeks. Some people here and at other forums spent around $50 recently on games only to be told that their games will not work on their new iPods.

    Its one thing to charge someone to play a 22 year old game like Super Mario Bros. again.

    Its another thing entirely to tell someone who just bought a game a couple of weeks ago that they'll have to purchase it again if they want to use it on their new hardware.

    Another thing to think about is just how important the backwards compatibility of the PS2, Xbox360, and PS3 is to those systems. Would the PS2 have been so successful without the ability to play PS1 games? I'm not so sure. The PS3 is practically relying on multi-platform titles and the ability to play PS2 games to keep it alive right now. The Xbox360 has 2 generations worth of games for people like me who never owned an original Xbox. Just like the PS2 had 2 generations worth of games for the disgruntled Nintendo fans who had only owned a Nintendo64 but didn't want a GameCube. Backwards compatibility is extremely important.

    Every single PC game I own still works. I can play my original MYST CD just fine. I can even fire up Mechwarrior 2. My original Half-Life CD, one of the first in stores, will still install and play.

    It would be different if these games were out for several years already. It would even be okay to charge to get the games on the iPhone or iPod touch, considering how different the hardware and interface is.

    But these games have not even been available for a year yet. And a very large amount of people purchased them mere weeks, some even days, before these new iPods were announced.

    That is VERY bad, very Microsoft-like, of Apple to basically tell these people "sorry, you need to buy them again". Apple needs to realize that backwards compatibility is paramount to the gaming industry now. It might not have been back in the 90s, but that has changed. Apple may have been able to get away with dropping backwards compatibility in the past and forcing purchases in the way of upgrades. But they need to realize that many of their current customers are "switchers" and the vast majority of iPod owners are Windows users. Those of us who have switched and those who still use Windows EXPECT to be able to buy something once and have it work for a very long time.

    If Apple does not step up, then they will lose their popularity just as fast as they got it.
  14. macrumors 6502a

    Jul 22, 2007
    Southern California
    Of course I know that, I am saying, as a consumer it makes no sense that I should rebuy games when I update my iPod.

    And yes, the hardware is different, but so is the hardware in the 360 compared to the original Xbox, you missed my point, we are dealing with one company, they should be capable of making their own software update to run on new hardware. It was not a complete rewrite I can guarantee you right now, they used most of the same source for this new game platform it probably took 3 guys a week to adapt it for the new iPod. (If that). This isnt Super Mario 64 vs Super Mario Galaxy, this is Sodoku 1.0 vs Soduku 1.1. I would pay for a new version if this actually was a new game with new puzzles and such, but it isnt. And oh its just 5 bucks, thats great if you only bought 1 game, I spent 40 bucks on that store why should I have to repay that if I already bought it?, Thats 4 movies or 4 albums that I could get.

    Let me offer another example, when the Intel OSX came out did I have to rebuy things like Unreal Tournament 2004? No of course not there was a little patch that I downloaded that made it compatible.
  15. macrumors regular

    Feb 9, 2005
    Milford, MI
    That's different from Apple?

    Are you kidding me?

    What's your point? That a platform has to exist for X years before it reaches its end of life?

    How is that different from someone who bought a GBA after a GameBoy, or a Dreamcast after a Saturn, or an Xbox 360 after an Xbox?

    Heck, I've spent way more than $50 on Xbox games that aren't playable on my Xbox 360.

    So using that logic, do you think games in ITMS like Ms. Pac Man and Tetris should be free to everyone in perpetuity?

    Not really.

    It's important to sell consoles to people, when you don't have a must-have title on a new platform.

    You're comparing apples to hammers here.

    The underlying OS on the iPod Classic is completely different. You're basically saying that it's completely acceptable and almost expected for people to have to rebuy games for the iPhone or iPod Touch, because they're newer and different, but the iPod Classic is beholden to support legacy apps because it has the same shape as the old iPod -- nevermind the fact that it shares the same OS as the iPhone and iPod Classic.


    Where did ITMS ever promise that iPod games would work on every hard drive based iPod forever?

    What type of person would go stock up on games in the ITMS knowing full well that a new iPod was going to be released? Especially when it was almost certain that the new iPod would run a completely different OS?

    Um... Apple dropped backwards compatibility with OS9 when they switched to Intel. And that assumes you thought that OS9 compatibility was anything approaching decent in OS X.

    Apple actually has a pretty consistent history of dropping backwards compatibility going back to the Lisa. It's also one of the inherent differences between Apple and Microsoft.

    One of the reasons Windows is so... you know... Windows... is because Microsoft designs it to work with everything under the sun. If you ever do a fresh install of pre-Vista Windows, you'll see it trying to load up drivers for ISA SCSI cards that haven't been made in nearly 15 years.

    Force your products to take on legacy baggage, and you wind up with Windows.

    With the relatively few people who bought games and immediately bought a new iPod for the sake of buying one?
  16. macrumors 601


    Feb 22, 2003
    New Hampshire
    You can run UT under Intel OSX because OSX (an operating system) allows you to. The tiny patch is necessary but it is the large OSX that allows the backward compatibility. The console games are running their own large operating system for backward compatibility.

    The only options they had on the current gen of the iPod was to re-write the game code and re-compile it for the new hardware making it incompatable with the last generation of iPods. A patch will not give you game compatability between the last and current iPod generations. You will never get game code that will run on both generations of iPods.
  17. macrumors regular

    Nov 8, 2006
    Ask yourself this: Can I still play it on my old iPod? If the answer is yes, you have nothing to complain about, other than not being given a free handout. Plain and simple. You got exactly what you paid for.
  18. macrumors 6502


    Sep 4, 2007
    :eek: Guys, relax. The ipod is a music player, not gaming device! Play on your macs!
  19. thread starter macrumors 65816

    Mar 3, 2007
    It amazes me that people will defend anything Apple does, no matter how bad it is. This situation now, and even the iPhone price drop. You had people telling others that had just purchased their iPhone a little more than 2 weeks before the price drop to "suck it up" and that "$200 isn't much".

    And now this. If Microsoft had done this, everybody would be mad and talking about how bad of a company they are and how they always screw the customer over.

    But now that Apple has made a couple of anti-consumer moves... well, what Apple has done is perfectly okay. Because its Apple.

    My point is that the games that Nintendo is trying to charge for are anywhere between 5 and 22 years old now. That is a bit different than games that were released mere weeks ago.

    I'm not saying its right over Nintendo to charge people who already purchased their games. I'm just saying its different. Those games range in age from half a decade to more than 2 decades old. Not a few weeks to one year old.

    And you certainly weren't able to purchase those old Nintendo games NEW just a couple of weeks ago and then be told a few days later that you couldn't use them any more on new hardware.

    Game Boy games worked on the GBA. The Dreamcast was released several years after the Saturn had effectively died in the US. And for both of those, neither Sega nor Nintendo told their customers that they had to buy new copies of the same game to continue playing. The games simply didn't work. They didn't update the game from 1.0 to 1.1 and say "sorry, $50 again please".

    And Microsoft has been making an effort to insure backwards compatibility with old Xbox games, despite the completely different hardware and and software. And they're doing that for free.

    Every person who bought iPod games should be eligible for a free upgrades of new versions. Not new games. But new versions. In the case of the current iPod games, they were all updated from version 1.0 to 1.1. That is no different than patching a PC game to run on a new OS, or a bug fix patch.

    If the new version of Ms. Pac-Man had new added levels and things like that, then Apple has every right to charge for the completely new game.

    But they should NOT charge for UPDATES that allow the games to run on new hardware.

    In the case of the better controls on Tetris, that should be free for all purchasers of that game. Why? Because the original controls were awful. That should be free as an apology. Nothing other than a couple of new control schemes were added to the game. That does not qualify as new content, it only qualifies as a patch or update.

    If you say so. One of the reasons I'll be buying an Xbox360, aside from the fact that the PS3 is horribly overpriced and a lot of its flagship titles (like Final Fantasy) have taken a turn for the worst, is the fact that I'll have access to a very large number of Xbox games.

    As for the link you posted, well I can see why they would focus less on backwards compatibility. Considering just how many games do work now.

    Nope. Just pointing out that I never had to pay any money for those games to continue working on new editions of Windows and new hardware.

    Windows XP is vastly different "under the hood" than Windows 3.1 and DOS, even Windows 95/98. Yet my MYST, Mechwarrior 2, and original Half-Life CDs still all work thanks to a company preserving backwards compatibility.

    The iPod touch and iPhone have completely different hardware and user interfaces. They have completely different ways of using them. The games would literally have to be rewritten in every aspect to work on those iPods. Of course, Apple could show they do care about the consumer and offer cheap upgrades for iPod touch/iPhone games to those of us who bought iPod games.

    The iPod classic and 3G nano are still the same basic iPods they were before, with upgrades to the hardware and software. Some chips may have changed. But so what? Look at the Xbox360. Microsoft went to great lengths to insure backwards compatibility. Look at the Playstation2. It had a PS1 CPU, but most of the backwards compatibility was the result of software emulation.

    The games for the iPod classic, nano, and 5/5.5G iPods are all played exactly the same, do not use any kind of new UI or new way of interacting with the games like they would on the touch or iPhone.

    Its a simple software update/patch to get the games to run on the new hardware. And, as such, it should be free to users as it always has been with console and PC games in the past.

    Apple NEVER said these games would not work on future iPods, nor did Steve Jobs come out and say that games would have to be repurchased.

    And it has been a tradition in the gaming industry for how long now? To maintain backwards compatibility.

    And where is the proof that the iPod classic and 3G nano run a "completely different OS"? Yeah, the UI has improved. But where is the proof that it is completely different, written entirely new from the ground up or based on OS X? Even so, its still using the same basic hardware, user interface, and user input to play the games.

    As much as I like my Mac, I have to be honest and say that is one of the reasons Microsoft still dominates.

    People can be assured that whatever they buy will continue to work in one way or another. And if the software doesn't, then the developer will generally update it for free to make sure it continues to work.

    Look at Nero as an example. They could have simply told all users they needed to buy a new version of Nero. $90 down the drain. But they offered a free upgrade for everyone so they could use Nero in Vista.

    That is just GOOD customer service.

    And as I said before, Apple needs to realize where a lot of their current customers are coming from. If they don't treat these customers the way they are used to being treated, or even better, then they are going to lose them as customers.

    If I have no guarantee that my software that I purchase for my Mac will continue to work as time goes on, then I might just have to not purchase a Mac again in the future.

    With their general policy of dropping compatibility. You can bet this will affect more than just a few people. The news of this has already spread across the internet and when the average person hears of it, they will wonder what they might forced to repurchase in the future.

    But companies like Epic assuring customers that old games work is just flat out good customer service. Epic could have said "sorry, we're not updating the old game to work". Or they could have been like Apple and charged for the new game.

    Or Apple could have stepped up like Microsoft and Sony and made sure that the games worked, despite the new hardware and software.

    At the very worst, Apple could have charged a very small fee, say 49 cents, to upgrade. Not forcing people to rebuy what they have already purchased.

    This coming from someone who could afford a 17" MBP with 4GB of RAM and the more expensive display.

    $50 might not mean as much to you. But to other people, being told that they just threw away $50 is a big deal.
  20. macrumors regular

    Nov 8, 2006
    Say what you want, I'm not wealthy by a long shot.

    Your second statement is incredibly whiny and utterly false. Did you ask yourself the question I told you to ask? You didn't throw away $50 because the games STILL WORK on your old iPod, which is what you bought them for. Nowhere did Apple say they would be compatible with new iPods being released. And with the overall interface/OS upgrade present in the new iPods, you shouldn't honestly expect your games built for an old iPod to work on them.

    This has got to be the worst argument I've ever heard. Getting back in to a console argument, would you make a thread if the PS3 had come out without PS2 and PS1 compatibility? Would you DEMAND new versions of the games because you paid Sony for them, and you want them to play on the newer hardware?

    Some games, like Tetris, get released and upgraded for every hardware platform known to man. Do you expect to be able to buy it once and have it work on all of them? Think about what you're asking.
  21. macrumors member

    Sep 14, 2007
    Now hey everyone in the US has the right to modify their property for their own use. The hitch is there is a law(DMCA) making it illegal to break DRM to do it(the law still has no precedent on which is more binding). So If we had a way of doing what apple did for free we could. Unfortunatly Apple won't make it easy nor would they allow someone to develop a ipod classic or nano 3g version of tetris derived from code purchased for an earlier ipod.

    side note: People did buy the oldewr version and are presumably stuck with them. that's the truth of teh matter. I lucked out and waite don buying more games(other than teh 3 the classic comed with). Knowing what I know I will never buy a game from itunes.
  22. macrumors 6502

    Aug 28, 2007
    I think the games should be free to update, but still: nobody ever said you would be able to run them on the new iPods. It's almost like complaining about your old VHS aren't very compatible with your DVD-player, or the fact that the iPod doesn't support audio casette tapes.

    And yes i think there is a tetris version for every device capable of playing games of any kind

    A little off-topic: complaining that you have to pay for nintendo's downloadabla games is a little extreme. I mean you can't honestly think they'd add 3 different cassette loaders to enable backwards compatibiliy?
  23. macrumors newbie

    Oct 21, 2006
    yes, i'm not sure if you have ever played a PS2 or PS1 game on a PS3, but sony went to great lengths, and I imagine an amazing amount of programming to get these older games to work on the new system, and is a major selling point for the PS3 as the reverse compatibility may be enough to stray a PS2 owner away from the 360 (granted apple has no competition in the iPod game market). If you compare the PS3 to the PS2 not only is it a different software but it is a complete hardware overhaul (DVD to Blu-Ray) Not only that apple has already made the new games reverse compatible, so if I bought it today it
    would work on my 5G and the new iPods for the same price.

    That would be like sony releasing a PS3 game that works on the PS2.
  24. macrumors member

    Dec 27, 2006
    Suppose that you had to re-purchase your downloaded music from iTunes when you upgraded to the new iPods?

    Would this be a fair and honorable thing to do to existing customers?

    The fair thing to do would be to allow backwards compatibility and offer premium versions of these games that are only compatible with the newer iPods.

  25. macrumors 604


    Mar 8, 2005
    Washington D.C

    As you said, not all Xbox games play on Xbox 360, same for PS3 with PS1 and PS2. And try playing your GB/GBC games in a DS? It doesn't work....same thing with Saturn, Mega Drive, Dreamcast, N64, SNES,NES, etc

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