Demo disks are dumb, doomed, Dodo-like

Demo disks were very useful, long ago. They provided legions of unconnected PC and console gamers with a low-cost method to try out a bunch of games. They provided game developers with a channel for getting the latest, greatest games into the hands of gunshy gamers. Demos are (and always will be) something we love because they allow us to try products before dropping hard-earned coin on them. What's not to love about that?

But demo disks are a different deal. As a medium of distribution, it's time for physical media to die and never come back. Internet users have for years now been downloading game demos from myriad websites, and console gamers are now getting the chance to do the same. With the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3 and Nintendo "Revolution" all promising digital downloads, isn't it time we did away with ecologically disastrous demo disks for good?

And once we've ditched demo disks, let's work on tossing those dastardly CDs, UMDs, MDs, DVDs, HD-DVDs, and Blu-Ray disks too, like so many cookies after a rough ride at the amusement park.

This article was originally published on Joystiq.