Microsoft Relaxes Mandatory Online DRM Checking of Xbox One Discs on Series X

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A recent update to the Xbox Series X makes it possible to play many more Xbox One games offline without a mandatory DRM check. The update would remove the restrictions for “the vast majority” of Xbox One games.

The new digital rights management policy was introduced earlier this month update 2208 rolled out unannounced and allows offline Xbox One games to be played on the newer Xbox Series X and S consoles. The new capability was initially introduced by the YouTube channel Hikikomori Media discovered and later confirmed by an Xbox employee.

“We’ve looked at data since the release of the Series X and S and found that in the vast majority of cases of Xbox One games on disc, an Internet compatibility check is not necessary. Some games may still need to be updated. [voordat deze offline gespeeld kunnen worden] to ensure a good experience,” said Eden Marie on behalf of Xbox.

Marie is referring to games that, for example, are only partially on the disk and still need to be updated during the installation. In that case, an internet connection is required at least once. Older Xbox and Xbox 360 games require an emulated version to be downloaded first and continue to require an internet connection afterwards. The relaxed DRM function does not apply to digital games that are installed via the Xbox Game Pass.

Until recently, backwards compatible Xbox One games on a disc on the Xbox Series X required at least a one-time internet connection, even if the user installed the game on the console from the disc. Due to the already updated DRM policy, the authenticity of the disc no longer needs to be checked online. Technically, the update also applies to the Series S, but because this console does not have a disc tray, nothing changes in practice in that case.

Update, Wednesday 09.15 o’clock: The original post suggested that Xbox One games on Xbox Series consoles should always use an Internet connection. This is not right. The message has been tightened. Thanks to Cayn.

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