YouTuber Tests Xbox’s DRM, Balan Wonderworld Unaffected

A weekend in early May saw many players unable to play games on their Xbox consoles. There was some problem with the Xbox servers that prevented not only online play, but even playing games with the console in offline mode. Naturally, this upset a lot of players – and presumably a lot of staff who had to work over the weekend. A YouTuber has now tested some Xbox games to see if they can deduce what exactly the company's DRM affects.

Spotted on ResetEra, YouTuber Modern Vintage Gamer tested smart delivery copies of Assassin's Creed Valhalla, Balan Wonderworld, Far Cry 6, and Resident Evil 8, as well as a backwards compatible Xbox One copy of Crackdown 3 and an Xbox Series X non-smart delivery copy of GTA 5.

What he found may shock you. Well, not really, it's just disappointing. He sets his Series X as his home console which should allow games to be played without signing in. He then installs all the games and sees which can actually be played. Crackdown, Valhalla, Far Cry, And Resident Evil don't work – they all require you to go online and download further content.

Modern Vintage Gamer explains that Smart Delivery discs generally only contain the Xbox One version of the game on them. This means that an additional update is required to play these games on a Series X. Balan Wonderworld was playable, however. Maybe it has both versions or just the Series X version. Either way, it's clearly the superior game.

This is quite concerning, as it means the disc you're paying for doesn't actually contain all the content on it that it promises. Obviously, day one patches need to be downloaded off the internet, but someone with a Series X and poor internet connection should expect to be able to pop a smart delivery disc in their console and immediately play a single-player game.

Crackdown didn't work due to needing an update to enable backwards compatibility, so that's less egregious, and GTA 5 worked fine, as that was an Xbox Series X version.

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