"What competitors system [scans save files]"
Nobody's, of course. But that is what it would take to have a far more Steam-like "patched before you notice" auto-patching system.
"it takes time to get everyone on board"
No it doesn't as this is not something that developers need to concern themselves with in the least. It is purely a system software and network capability issue.
"I have plenty of game info on the PS3 where I haven't played the games in forever and wouldn't want all my space eaten up"
To cater to the likes of you, Sony could have thrown in a simple "last used" date cut-off for the save-file scanning. These are the guys that have a freakin' font selection option in there system setup, so we know that they obviously aren't concerned with possibly frivolous user settings.
"I certainly didn't subscribe because of that feature. I suppose if I had, and it wasn't working, I'd be a little miffed."
It is 100% the only reason that I subscribed. I don't care about "free" DLC or PSN Games. If I want those, I'll buy them. $50 a year to get away from the horrible default patching system? That sounded like a fair trade. The raw inelegance in the implementation is absolutely frustrating, and it really is only a huge problem for me because the proper method of this system working is so very obvious. All it would take is a simple setup wizard that initiated upon purchase, much like the PS3's Networking Wizard that asked:
- Do you want to turn autopatching on?
- What time do you want it to run?
- Do you want every game to be patched, or just games you have played in the last 3 months, 6 months, or 12 months?
Bam! Every user gets what they want, and more users even turn on the auto-patching, since they were prompted to do so instead of needing to dig through a menu to go find the option.