Bleszinski thinks 'always online future is coming fast'

Former Epic designer says tech "doesn't advance by worrying about the edge case"

Cliff Bleszinski has launched a defence of the always online future he views as a strong likelihood.


In a new post on his personal blog, Bleszinski addressed long-running rumours that Microsoft's Xbox 360 successor will require a persistent internet connection. He also stuck up for Adam Orth, the Microsoft creative director who left the company this week following a staunch defence of always online.

"Now, I don't know as much as you'd think I know about Microsoft's future plans," Bleszinski wrote. "Even if I did I wouldn't go blogging about it like some sort of fool.

"My gut is telling me that an always online future is probably coming. It's coming fast, and possibly to the majority of the devices you enjoy. Adam's analogies weren't that far off; although the vacuum one was kind of weird. Sim City, with all of its' troubles on launch, seems to be selling briskly.

"Diablo 3, the poster child of a messy launch, is estimated to be at 12 million units. I would bet money that without the always online elements of Diablo 3 that it would have sold half of that.

"Remember when Microsoft made the decision to only allow broadband on Xbox Live? It was a bold move back then; broadband penetration wasn't anywhere near what it is now. And yet the march of progress continued. Sooner or later our government, or Google, or any number of providers are going to get their shit together and we'll have universally fast internet for the majority of the first world."

Bleszinski went on to suggest that early adopters of new tech are likely have solid internet connections, and argued that technology doesn't advance by worrying about have-nots.

"I'd be willing to say that any early adopter for any new piece of technology is probably going to have some sort of solid internet connection," he said. "Also, and I've stated this before, keeping that umbilical cord connected might not always require some sort of insane fat pipe. Sometimes just 3G might be enough.

"My wife and I were discussing these issues this afternoon and she mentioned the example of 'Hey what if I'm a gamer who wants to go to a cabin in the woods for a week and I don't have online access there?' My response was 'Unplugging entirely sometimes isn't always a bad thing.' And that's the edge case...the week-long vacation to the cabin is only 30 hours of not playing a game or a device that's built for much more. Technology doesn't advance by worrying about the edge case."

It was recently reported that Microsoft will hold a reveal event for the next Xbox on May 21.