Archive link: https://archive.ph/ajgMB

Xbox has taken a definitive stance by instituting a new policy that will block the use of unauthorized accessories with its consoles, effective as of November 17.

This decision has already begun to reverberate amongst the gaming community, and many have already had a warning about it on their consoles in the form of error message 0x82d60002.

Error message shown on Xboc console when plugging in accessory (Image credit: Future)

It’s a big shift that’s going to impact all those accessories that don’t have the Xbox seal of approval. Made more apparent by Xbox redirecting the user to its own official storefront.

Our sources indicate that Microsoft is lifting restrictions on the ability for third-party hardware manufacturers to build wireless accessories for Xbox Series X|S devices.

Now, we’re hearing that Microsoft does have an approval process for official third-party wireless controllers, and this new restriction may be a result of new security measures to put restrictions on inputs that could circumvent play or inject unfair advantages.

The downside, of course, is that Xbox’s new policy is affecting many “fair” accessories, particularly in the case of fighting game joysticks and other similar accessories.

The problem seems to revolve around brands that haven’t acquired this licensing but still market their products as compatible with Xbox. It appears that Microsoft is actively blocking these items.

    • ampersandrew@kbin.social
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      9 months ago

      Surely it will help them reclaim their spot as the de facto fighting game console in a scene where many people use unlicenced controllers with Brook boards.

      • Moonrise2473@feddit.it
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        9 months ago

        But if someone wants to do an arcade controller, this changes almost nothing. Just solder the wires on the contact pads on an official Xbox controller. Impossible to detect via software

        Even the turbo button can be done, with an intermediate IC that transforms the signal from the button to be intermittent

          • Natanael@slrpnk.net
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            9 months ago

            Not really, just let the game devs chose when to request that the console enforces stricter verification of accessories and otherwise just allow whatever

  • UrLogicFails@beehaw.orgOP
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    9 months ago

    I’ve never been one to play competitive online games since I have the hand/ eye coordination of a house plant, so I can’t weigh in on the advantages of blocking controllers that are “unfair”; but as someone who hated button mashing “A” in Animal Crossing, I can say that custom controllers can definitely have a place with a console.

    In my opinion, this feels like Microsoft simply wanted more licensing money and is doing it under the guise of fair online play. It reminds me of Apple locking faster charging and data transfer on USB-C to their own proprietary USB cables.

    Hopefully this does not negatively affect too many people.

    • GunnarRunnar@beehaw.org
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      9 months ago

      The unfair advantage argument definitely holds water, mouse and keyboard can be like a sports car racing against a bicycle. But if someone had the budget to tackle this issue through software, it would be Microsoft. So I’m inclined to agree that it’s mostly just MS squeezing money out of third party manufacturers.

      If they’d care only about the “unfair”, they’d put a fair, almost free, price on the official license that covers the cost of testing or whatever. Truth presumably here is also a bit more complicated, maybe third party controllers could be easier to hack resulting in an ineffective licensing system, idk. But yeah smells like money for Microsoft and a loss for consumers.

      • tombuben@beehaw.org
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        9 months ago

        Wouldn’t the unfair advantage only hold water if they blocked unauthorized accessories only with online multi-player games and leave single-player experiences alone?

      • Norah - She/They@lemmy.blahaj.zone
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        9 months ago

        Okay, but you already can’t use a keyboard and mouse in most games on an Xbox. It has to specifically be enabled by the developer, and the game would have to be coded to even accept that input.

        All HID input devices have identifiers that they communicate to the host to determine their functions. I guess you could potentially make a device that appears to be a controller and translates keyboard/mouse with a couple USB inputs. You could probably get a Pi to do that. But no one cares about winning on console that badly, they just go play on PC 🙄

        • Quasari@programming.dev
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          9 months ago

          Search xbox mouse adapter on amazon. There are so many products that do what you describe people wouldn’t care to do because they don’t care.

          • Norah - She/They@lemmy.blahaj.zone
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            9 months ago

            Okay, then I’m going to default back to the fact that someone’s going to break the DRM and still make those devices, and this is only going to hurt people using accessible controllers.

            • Quasari@programming.dev
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              9 months ago

              You are probably right. Devices like these in the old days used to require you hook up an official controller to it to get past the drm. Likely will evolve back to that.

        • tal@lemmy.today
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          9 months ago

          I guess you could potentially make a device that appears to be a controller and translates keyboard/mouse with a couple USB inputs

          They control the console, the OS, the controller hardware, and can require the console to connect to them. They already have the ability to push out controller firmware updates. They can have the controller cryptographically authenticate to the console and push blacklists to the console of keys that get leaked (like if someone somehow extracts a key from a legit controller and uses it to make a knockoff).

    • FlihpFlorp@lemm.ee
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      9 months ago

      One thing that kinda sprang to mind was accessible controllers. Ik Microsoft makes one and I’m sure there’s some approved but my thoughts are what if it doesn’t serve your needs

      I’m tired so hopefully this makes sense

    • Sternhammer@aussie.zone
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      9 months ago

      I hope this isn’t Microsoft becoming more Apple-like. That said, if this leads to a restriction on the use of cheat-capable controller accessories such as the Chronos Zen then it could be a significant positive for FPS console gamers.

      It reminds me of Apple locking faster charging and data transfer on USB-C to their own proprietary USB cables.

      Are you sure of that? It was certainly rumoured before the release of the iPhone 15 Pro that Apple would require MFi cables for high speed data transfer but I don’t think that turned out to be true. As far as I can tell any high speed USB-C cable will allow full speed transfer from an IPhone 15 Pro. It might need to be a Thunderbolt 3 cable, especially for recording to external SSD, not sure, I’m no expert, but I don’t think it needs to be an MFi cable.

      • Norah - She/They@lemmy.blahaj.zone
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        9 months ago

        You’re correct about the specs of the device. However, after announcement/release there was controversy that the cable included in the box is only capable of USB 2.0 transfer speeds. But Marques Brownlee pointed out that the same is usually true with the included cable for Android devices too. I got a portable SSD to use with my iPad Pro and it just comes with a short high-speed cable anyway…

        Edit: The included cable with the iPad is also only 2.0 speeds, even though it has a USB4 40Gbps port.

  • ChaoticNeutralCzech@beehaw.org
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    9 months ago

    Do they realize this may be the only way some people can legally play the games? I can imagine lots of disabilities that only let people play with a niche controller

  • TwilightVulpine@kbin.social
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    9 months ago

    Enshittification advances. Consoles already are the prime example of devices that act as if they are still owned by the company rather than the customer, but they somehow find even more ways to make it worse…

    • Aasikki@sopuli.xyz
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      9 months ago

      Or just allow them always. It’s about the money, not about cheating. Also many games these days have cross play with PC anyways, where you can literally use a modified toaster as a controller if you want to lol.

          • DigitalPaperTrail@kbin.social
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            9 months ago

            I assure you, the devs at MS are kept awake at night, feverishly sweating over the potential this device has wrought

            I dare say I shit my pants a little at how bananas it is

      • beefcat@beehaw.org
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        9 months ago

        the problem is that there are some really good devices on the market that essentially let players cheat in shooters, getting mouse-like input while retaining the game’s built-in aim assist features.

        really the best compromise would be to let game developers decide whether unlicensed input devices can be used in their games (just like how they can choose whether to support m+kb). then shooters could impose reasonable restrictions without fucking over the fighting game community.

  • ArugulaZ@kbin.social
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    9 months ago

    Microsoft sure loves blocking things from its game console nobody actually wants to use in the first place. Who exactly is going to want to buy a license to make video game controllers for the system that’s last place in the console wars? Specialty controllers like the Neo-Geo click stick by 8BitDo are almost sure to be released for major formats, but NOT Xbox, if 8BitDo has to pay an extortionate fee for a license.

    • Thembo McBembo@beehaw.org
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      9 months ago

      Accessibility. People who can’t grab or use an XBOX controller with their hands need to use custom controllers, including things like foot pedals.

    • HovringSquidworld97A@beehaw.org
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      9 months ago

      The 8BitDo stuff is what I had in mind as well. Everything I have from them has Xinput mode, and works great for PC Game Pass and Xcloud games. I was hoping that anything that supports Xinput would be available on the actual consoles, but walled garden.

      • ArugulaZ@kbin.social
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        9 months ago

        Still waiting for it to arrive. I got it for half off on Woot, and got in just in time to grab a Mai!

    • TwilightVulpine@kbin.social
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      9 months ago

      Seems like any customer rights now only exist in direct defiance of corporations and whatever unreasonable unilateral rules they set without consulting anyone else.

    • exonac@feddit.de
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      9 months ago

      Same here. Ironically I’m using a bunch of original Xbox controllers on it. I just like the shape. whaddayagonnado microsoft? Your OS and your consoles are shit! You are the third party now!

      • Rayspekt@kbin.social
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        9 months ago

        Haha I do this as well as they feel nice and their dongle is able to manage multiple controllers at once.

      • thingsiplay@kbin.social
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        9 months ago

        Me too. And I even purchased the official proprietary dongle from Microsoft and play it wireless. Why not Bluetooth? I don’t like Bluetooth, as I have bad experience with it in the past and would need a dongle for it anyway. Otherwise, the controller works very well with Steam and with non Steam emulators. Microsoft knows how to make good controllers, I give them that.

        But on the other hand, I wonder how it is to have a PS5 controller. First, Sony has open source drivers for it and they are included in the Kernel I think (tag me wrong, if it’s not true). Plus it has some features, which the Xbox controllers do not have. I’m very curious, but the prices for new controllers are so expensive!

      • khalic@beehaw.org
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        9 months ago

        I’ve already used it to play the hell out of anno 1800, better than any 2k machine would have.

        • BolexForSoup@kbin.social
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          9 months ago

          Baldur’s gate 3 for me while I waited for the mac release. Valheim before that. I only use it for probably three or four months a year, but I got the founders rate at five dollars a month so it’s more than worth it to keep paying for it.

  • AutoTL;DR@lemmings.worldB
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    9 months ago

    🤖 I’m a bot that provides automatic summaries for articles:

    Click here to see the summary

    In a significant development for Xbox users, the era of tinkering with your console to use unapproved accessories is drawing to a close.

    I asked for a photo of the controller, and I’m not surprised it didn’t work, given the included adapter looks like something you get for free at the bottom of a box of cereal.

    we have received player feedback concerning these products when used on Xbox consoles (the latest OS version 10.0.25398.2266. released on 10/16) during online gameplay.

    Brook Gaming’s statement highlights a series of issues that have been plaguing third-party, unlicensed accessories, particularly since the rollout of console build 10.0.25398.2266, which was released on October 16.

    As of right now, we haven’t seen any evidence that these types of accessories will be affected by the recent changes since Xbox has historically been unable to detect them, but we’re investigating.

    Our sources indicate that Microsoft is lifting restrictions on the ability for third-party hardware manufacturers to build wireless accessories for Xbox Series X|S devices.


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