Recently–as in last year, I conducted a poll on my twitter account about which people prefer; the physical disc or a digital copy of a game. While this is by no means, a professional statistic, I did find it interesting that the poll tied. There are many pros and cons to both choices and I wanted to share some things I found with each.
Which do you prefer and can you state some reasons why you like a Digital Game Copy or a Physical Game Disc?
— Dina Farmer (@DinaAFarmer) November 9, 2015
The purchase of digital versions of games is the uncontested star of sales. The immediate simplicity in pay, download, and play of a newly released game is difficult to dispute. Digital copies of games are often free on consoles, steam and Origin, thus making it very easy to have access to a game right away. In example; Xbox One and PS4 are giving away free games once a month. All of the replies from my poll were pro digital copies:
Pro Digital Copies.
@DinaAFarmer my PC doesn’t have a disc drive!
— Augeia (@augeia) November 9, 2015
@DinaAFarmer I prefer digital, as it usually gives me an avenue to re-download, where physical can get lost/damaged.
— The Bearded Spider (@DaBeardedSpider) November 9, 2015
— Zoso1701 (@zoso1701) November 9, 2015
@DinaAFarmer unless I’m getting the collector edition, I go digital
— HereComestheJana-ral (@ugobananas) November 9, 2015
Pros For Physical Discs
With all of this in mind, physical discs can be resold to a store or online to get some of your money back. Additionally, the game is yours;, no worries if your console is damaged beyond recovery, or you get hacked, and you can lend out your game. Why? Because you have the physical disc. Yes, today’s gaming consoles do not read a game from the disc anymore and with the physical disc, you still have to download the game to install it. The genitive with that is you must also have the disc in your console to play it. To some, this might be a strange inconvenience to get up and switch discs. Meanwhile with a digital game there are no worries about that, you simply select the game you wish to play and play it. It is no question in this regard that the digital copy is superior.
Although, the numbers are showing digital copies are doing much better than their physical counterparts, I’m not sure they will ever truly go away. Many players like to hold on the actual ownership of a game; however the downside to physical discs is they take up space. A few of my military friends know the pain of having to move stuff around constantly and removing even a few things like game discs helps to save on moving stuff around the world.
Cons to Physical Discs
@DinaAFarmer because we have enough shit to move 😂😂
— Fran (@freeborboleta) November 9, 2015
Either way, I think this debate comes down to personal preference. Both sources of media hold different pros and cons but ultimately it is up to the consumer. Some find it best to get the physical disc while other find it easier to manage a digital copy. Let me know what you think. Do you prefer to purchase the physical disc or the digital copy?