back to article Reports: New Xbox could DOOM second-hand games market

Microsoft has been quite cagey about its plans for games licensing on the new Xbox One, but multiple reports now suggest there's going to be very little incentive for a second-hand games market anymore, and buyers could get stung with extra charges. On Thursday Consoledeals.co.uk received a note from a senior member of a UK …

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  1. Greg J Preece

    Alternate article title: "Public requirement for a second-hand games market could DOOM new Xbox."

    1. M Gale

      Steam games cannot be resold, or even given away.

      People are quite willing to be shafted for the shiny.

      Oh well.

      1. tempemeaty

        @ M Gale, that is so true.

        I've been stunned at how many gamers I've known willingly lined up and happily bent over and spread their cheeks for some of the most shockingly abusive game companies to get their new shiny.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Yes but to have a second hand market somebody has to buy them new first...

        2. TechnicalBen Silver badge

          There are DRM free games on Steam. Steam is the delivery platform, not the ball and chain (though it does sell those as well).

      2. grommile
        Pint

        Steam isn't all that comparable to this, because games on Steam are often cheap.

        Even games with a £30 list price will end up on 75%-discount sale at some point - at which point they're £7.50, making them cheaper than three pints of beer while (hopefully) providing more entertainment than three pints of beer would.

        Console games at first-hand retail, on the other hand, are ludicrously expensive.

        1. phr0g
          FAIL

          silly argument

          "New" Steam games cost a lot more than in the shops or online. When they get old they go on sale.

          just like the games that you buy in the shop or online.

          It is exactly the same.

          1. M Gale

            Re: silly argument

            It is nothing like the same, unless you're telling me that I am the Steam store.

            Really, how do you equate being able to give something of yours away to a friend, with getting shafted with DRM because it's on a sale?

            1. TechnicalBen Silver badge

              Re: M Gale

              While true, you can take the option of only buying DRM free games (Steam sells a few), or F2P/PPP (Pay per play) games (which it has a few of the former, not any of the latter AFAIK). Or you can get a game for the price that is right for you as a single user agreement contract. I'll purchase most things at the right price if there is a desire or need. The sellers need to remember that too!

          2. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: silly argument

            New steam games absolutely go on sale, just only on one-day sales to ensure you keep checking the Steam store. Today's one-day sale is six months old and at a 75% discount. Deus Ex: Human Revolution had been out for 2 months when it was first discounted by 25% (for a day) and six months when it was discounted by 66% (for a weekend)

            I wonder why I've never seen a steamwatcher app to alert you when your preferred games get discounted?

            1. Jediben

              Re: silly argument

              Because Steam has this function built in. You add a game to a 'wishlist' and Steam emails you when any titles on the list are discounted.

            2. Greg J Preece

              Re: silly argument

              I wonder why I've never seen a steamwatcher app to alert you when your preferred games get discounted?

              Because Steam already does this. Add the games to your wishlist and they'll e-mail you when they go on sale.

            3. Goat Jam
              Pint

              Steamwatcher app

              It is called Steam wishlist.

              Add the games you are interested in to your wishlist and Voila! you get an email when they go on sale.

            4. StooMonster
              Headmaster

              Re: silly argument

              Follow Vavle's @Steam_Games or look at the hash tag #SteamSales on Twitter and you'll be right up to date with new games' availability and also Steam Sales and discounts.

        2. h3

          The reason console games were more expensive was because of cartridges costing a lot to manufacture.

          If they went back to cartridge then they could justify the prices to me.

          I never sell games to shops. Thought about it a few times then saw the queues to do it and thought I really cannot be bothered and just given the games away usually to a child or teenager (15 or younger without a job).

          If I cannot do the above I just won't get the console. Metacritic is useless for me I don't like many of the games that are universally highly rated. (Most of the ones I want will be rated down by someone much younger than me because they are too hard).

          I hate Game as a company completely (Annoys me they have an exclusive on download codes for Nintendo). They only sell the absolute worst games and if you go to get an accessory they only stock junk copies gameware which is the same as the $0.99 stuff on ebay you can get from HK. They don't stock any of the good games then Nintendo thinks they are not selling well and then there is only a few copies and they are only sold by scalpers. (Think I should have got an import 3DS XL instead now there is the region lock most of my favourite DS games are US imports). Don't see what Game provides them the consoles are always cheaper in the Supermarkets so that is where parents will get them from. (My Mum used to hate taking me in there as a kid). They don't keep all (Hardly any really) the accessories. I could see it if they always kept all the stuff in stock. The whole design of Gamestation was nicer but they got rid of that not Game.

          (I would probably get Nintendo downloads direct from Nintendo if they priced them a pound or two above retail for the cartridge). Any other company that game would have probably been ok ideally Amazon.

          Stuff like Cex is going to be hit to by this most. Maybe Grainger Games. (They actually still have a shop near me - until very recently we had Blockbuster/Gamestation and Grainger Games).

          If they do steam like pricing I might consider it.

        3. Goat Jam

          This is true. If a game is cheap enough then being able to sell it 2nd hand becomes a moot point.

          I buy stuff on steam when it is on sale. I'd rather pay $5-$10 for an A title a couple of years after it was first released than pay $70-$120 when it is new. If I paid $110 for an XBOX game new and sell it for $55 later (unlikely to get that much even) then I am still worse off than just waiting for a steam sale and getting it for peanuts.

          Bioshock 2 for less than $10? I'll take that without a second thought.

      3. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        "Steam games cannot be resold, or even given away."

        Not yet, anyway. Valve are being sued in Germany to provide this feature to satisfy EU law. They have the capability already built into steam so they've no excuse. Also steam's cheap as owt so people don't complain.

      4. jnemesh
        FAIL

        Yes Steam games CAN be given away.

        Are you just posting whatever pops into your mind or do you actually check your facts before spouting off? Steam games can indeed be "re-gifted".

        1. M Gale

          Re: Yes Steam games CAN be given away.

          Are you just posting whatever pops into your mind or do you actually check your facts before spouting off? Steam games can indeed be "re-gifted".

          Highly misleading.

          You can re-gift a game key if you have not used that key.

          As soon as you have used that key... that is, once it is a used game and no longer a new game.. you cannot re-gift, or sell, the game.

          Please check your facts, and don't be one of Valve's useful idiots.

        2. Charles 9 Silver badge

          Re: Yes Steam games CAN be given away.

          You can ONLY re-gift a game if it's an authorized "extra copy" or it's a gift you haven't unwrapped yourself. Once you activate it, it's yours come hell or high water.

      5. Quantum Leaper
        Go

        Most of the steam games, I have bought are under 10 bux, so what it I get shafted on a game it didn't cost me that much to begin with. I don't mind wasting 10 on a game that may or may not be good, but it is $60 or more, I will care quite a bit.

        1. Belardi

          Last month, for $16 I got from steam: A race game, Portal 1, Portal 2 (two copies, 2nd for my kid). There is no complicated system for me to play these games.

          I'm going PS4.

          1. h3

            RE: Belardi

            The thing is even if you do go PS4 you cannot guarantee anything.

            If it looks like it is working for Microsoft Sony is quite likely to introduce the same system after the fact. (Once they have the majority of the marketshare).

            They are quite willing to change things after the fact which is far worse than changing things and them being that way from the start.

            Any of these companies can do anything at any point. Barring people modding the consoles.

      6. Connor

        Whilst that's true, Steam games are a lot cheaper and sometimes a hell of a lot cheaper (many games I've bought have been £5 or less) and the restrictions are known in advance and of course you can also buy the PC DVD version of the game, without Steam, without restrictions, but for more money. There's no such option on the Xbox.

        1. M Gale

          and of course you can also buy the PC DVD version of the game, without Steam, without restrictions, but for more money.

          I only wish that were true. Sorry, but every single physical copy in the shops will have either Steam, or some other form of restrictions management, many of which will either limit the install count or, like Steam/Steamworks, prevent resale entirely.

          And all of them want bullshit online checking. Been a long while since I bought a mainstream PC game. My later titles are all Steam-free, and in many cases entirely copy-protection-free indy titles. They deserve my money. EA and Valve do not.

          Gratuitious Space Battles utterly owns, by the way.

          1. Greg J Preece

            I only wish that were true. Sorry, but every single physical copy in the shops will have either Steam, or some other form of restrictions management, many of which will either limit the install count or, like Steam/Steamworks, prevent resale entirely.

            Actually, it is optional. Not all games on Steam use Steamworks for the physical disc release. They tend to do so if both releases are simultaneous, but there's no requirement for it.

            1. M Gale

              "Actually, it is optional. Not all games on Steam use Steamworks for the physical disc release. They tend to do so if both releases are simultaneous, but there's no requirement for it."

              If it says "you must accept the Steam Subscriber Agreement (SSA)" on the back of the box, or if it says "requires an Internet connection to activate" for a game that has no need to connect to anything, then no thanks. I'm not subscribing to Steam, to play with a toy. Unfortunately, these days, that's every single game in the shop. The fact that Steam is so successful indicates that there are a large number of people quite happy with being arse-raped by the games industry. Given the nature of the product, I imagine many of these are kids and teenagers that don't know any better and think that this is how things are supposed to be.

              LIke I say, I'll give my money to people who deserve it. Valve can get fuck all, which doesn't mean I won't play their games. They just won't get paid for it.

      7. MJI Silver badge

        Steam

        But I am happy tp take the risk at Orange Box for about £12, or HL for under a tenner.

        Never paid £35 for one game on Steam

        1. MJI Silver badge

          Re: Not just Steam

          I have had bargains off PSN as well.

          Journey with Unfinished Swan.

          Motorstorm RC for PS3 and Vita.

          Can't sell any on but they were all cheap to begin with.

          I will buy games I cannot sell on IF they are cheap to begin with.

          But then I haven't bought full price day of release since November 2011, and will not until June.

      8. Magnus_Pym

        Cost of ownership

        I might spend £50 game new and sell it for £25 when I'm done with it, or at least get £25's worth of trade in or other benefit. Then It's cost me £25 in total. I'll do that again and again. If I spend £50 on a game and find it has no resale value then I'll do that only once.

        Prepare to see good Xbox One sale for 3 months then nothing.

    2. LarsG
      Meh

      Go get a 360 when the price drops.

    3. Belardi

      Yep, you fixed it. Many many Xbox users are NOT going to go for this. I sure wouldn't.

      It'll take microfart about 6 months to figure this out... by that time, the PS4 will be 3~4x more popular than the xbox1 (what a stupid ass name) and that will be it. Another stupid greedy failure to add to MS this year.

      Really, can't wait to see this train crash. When you try to force crap down people's throats - they tend to fight back... as they did with Windows8.

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      This sounds strangely like what they had planned for the new office. If your laptop gets stolen, you buy a new copy of office. Greed knows no bounds

    5. Anonymous Coward
      Megaphone

      The Xbox One was already doomed.

      it's quite clearly an advertising platform rather than a gaming system...

      Still, idiots that buy one can now get Achievements for watching the latest Simon Cowell drivel...

      http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/2013-05-24-microsoft-applies-for-patent-on-tv-achievements

    6. Levente Szileszky
      Thumb Up

      Exactly...

      ...my first thought exactly - author must have somked too much of that MSFT XKool-Aid if he thinks Xbox One can kill a multi-platform market alone and not vica versa, dying in flames when people flock to Sony and Nintendo (especially that PS4 looks to be a superior game console by every measure.).

    7. cannon
      FAIL

      Greed

      like they dont already make enough money!

      but i fully agree that this should doom the console but people are stupid enough to use steam & give up their right to sell, lend, trade or even give away aren't they?

      the next step will be "connect always on requirement" so they can charge per person watching movies & that only you, can use your account & not share it with the other members of the household.

      keep purchasing their crap ppl, keep cheering away your rights!

    8. Danny 5
      Thumb Up

      Here sir

      Have my like!

      Even the fanboys (including me) are frothing at the mouth and a very substantial number is likely to make the switch to PS4, provided they don't implement their own horrible flavour of DRM of course.

      In any case, i think Microsoft may well have made a massive mistake here.

    9. radical mit2

      How is this going to work?¨!

      So daughter and I share the same game to MS really think i will either purchase two of them or each time the other what to play, or I have to a fee, they have to be completely out of there tree!

      Or if i do purhcase two, then insert the wrong cd into the other ones account repay again!

      I really think not...

      I was watching the Xbox One .... sat there wondering when they would come up with a Show stopper function that really made me this i needed, one.. did not happen! how the heck they think i can watch SKY in HD over the internet, were in our Village, 1M down is fast... does the Magical XboxOne come with a SKY sat cable interface?

      when you think about it, you have fast switching, ok, nice but really needed?

      oh what else, mmmm, that was it! i think, oh, yes no back compat, yes we know why cause they can not charge us for those games, hence not there!

      I have had Xbox since the start, we have a few, family account etc, but i think we will switch now to PS/4 for games and a Small PC in the lounge for other bits, and my Sky box to Watch TV on! Xbox One, sorry the 360 does all i need...

    10. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Here's hoping..

      About time for the backlash against companies collecting our data for free..

  2. Mr. Great Sage

    Personally, I've decided I'm not buying a 'next gen' console until after I get a new TV. (and I'm not getting a new TV because mine works perfectly fine.)

    1. The_Regulator

      I guess the opinion is out on your comment because you don't say what kind of tv you have right now...

  3. Aoyagi Aichou
    Black Helicopters

    Opinion, don't stone me

    While I find Microsoft's desire to limit reselling games perfectly reasonable, I don't think that they could ever take a moral high ground with that while at the same time making customers pay for basic services and even then having their "premium service" ridden with ads.

    1. M Gale

      Re: Opinion, don't stone me

      "While I find Microsoft's desire to limit reselling games perfectly reasonable"

      Why?

      1. Aoyagi Aichou

        @M Gale

        Funny, I always tend to forget answers for questions once I'm asked.

        There are more reasons. If I understand the console market correctly, the console makers sell their products pretty underpriced, because they expect to get sales from the sales of games. Secondly, I don't think reselling games is very healthy for the whole business... The only one profiting from that are currently the resellers - parasites. From publisher's and developer's point of you, it's the same if you just pirate the game, is it not? It's not like with, for example, books. There is a limited number of them and some are pretty hard to find. Then there is the possibility that it might push publishers to lower their initial prices or at least make them fall faster while at the same time teaching people some patience (that's what Steam taught to me).

        1. M Gale

          Re: @M Gale

          Unfortunately, the computer games industry is not some special little flower. In any other case, if I buy something, it is mine. Only in insane-DRM land do we have the case where once you have bought something, it is not yours to sell.

          I'm sorry, but honestly, I do not care about what the author thinks if I sell an old book. E-flite do not get a say on whether I give someone an old RC aeroplane or helicopter. If I have a half tube of glue that someone needs, Bostik are not going to call the waahmbulance over me giving someone some adhesive. The same applies to software, and especially computer games. If your business model cannot handle people giving away or selling their own stuff.. then you had better change that business model or go bankrupt.

          1. JimC Silver badge

            Re: @M Gale

            Oh come on. There are all sorts of situations where you shell out a sum of money but don't get to legally own whatever it is. If you don't want to buy stuff like that don't, but don't pretend its somehow unique to DRM software.

            1. M Gale

              Re: @M Gale

              Oh come on. There are all sorts of situations where you shell out a sum of money but don't get to legally own whatever it is. If you don't want to buy stuff like that don't, but don't pretend its somehow unique to DRM software.

              You mean when you're renting stuff?

          2. Anne-Lise Pasch
            Happy

            Re: @M Gale

            Good luck reselling your TV license.

            1. M Gale

              Re: @M Gale

              Good luck reselling your TV license.

              Don't have one. In any case, just like road tax, you can return your TV license for a refund of any unused time on it. The license is a tax, not a product.

              Good luck selling your TV. OH WAIT.

          3. trejrco

            Close to accurate ...

            I largely agree - the one difference being that (sometimes) the publisher does need to maintain infrastructure to support online / multiplayer games ... so it isn't quite the same as a book, but the costs should easily be covered by the existing XBOXLive account charges ...

        2. Greg J Preece
          Facepalm

          Re: @M Gale

          There are more reasons. If I understand the console market correctly, the console makers sell their products pretty underpriced, because they expect to get sales from the sales of games.

          Then they can budget for it. They managed to make enough profit when second hand games were completely unrestricted, no? If Microsoft weren't making money from the Xbox, they wouldn't do it.

          Secondly, I don't think reselling games is very healthy for the whole business... The only one profiting from that are currently the resellers - parasites.

          Game traders are not parasites. They provide a useful service to the end customer, that of being able to get rid of property you no longer want, and optionally trade it in against something new. In the case of a store like CeX, that new thing might not even be a video game. If it were not beneficial to the end user, they wouldn't be able to make a business from it.

          Also, by selling their pre-owned games at a lower (or much lower) price point than the new games, they enable those without much money to get into games and series that they couldn't otherwise afford to experience, which then encourages future purchasing. Now, let's think of a demographic that are very keen on video games, but might not be initially able to afford them new....hmmmmm......oh, right - kids!

          From publisher's and developer's point of you, it's the same if you just pirate the game, is it not?

          It absolutely is not, and your thinking is flawed to the point of insult. A pirate takes a copy of the game without payment, and if they hand it on, they do so again without payment (generally speaking).

          In order for a pre-owned game to be sold, it had to be bought in the first place. Every pre-owned game on a store shelf represents a new purchase. And many of those games that are traded in are traded in order to be able to afford, get this, NEW GAMES!

          The second hand market directly benefits the game industry, but the arrogance and greed of major publishers, coupled with folks who would dare equate reselling with theft, is leading to this exclusionary system that will either make video gaming the pasttime of the wealthy few, or crash the industry entirely, as it so thoroughly deserves.

          1. Aoyagi Aichou

            @Greg J Preece

            I see several flaws in your argumentation:

            Beneficial to the end user doesn't always mean a good thing. Again, pirating the software is also beneficial to the end user, as the software is rarely paid for on any level.

            What it encourages are two things: no morals towards the developer and further purchasing of pre-owned games. Again, kids need to be taught patience and not wanting everything right now, especially if they can't afford it. Especially the kids in the US.

            From the the point of view of the publisher, the second-hand sale hasn't been paid for either.

            The idea behind "selling games to be able to afford more games, so it's all good" is a bit simplistic. Example: A person buys a Modern Military Shooter (MMS) for $60, plays it for a month, then sells it to GamePawn for $10, which will most likely become irrelevant in a week because really, games don't come out that often or because early buyers are going to buy the game regardless. I haven't heard of any case of "I sell games to be able to afford new games" and I live in a pretty poor country (I hope you'll understand that if you follow up with "I DO THIS", I won't consider it to be very credible). Then there comes another person and instead of buying an older/cheaper game properly, he/she buys is from GamePawn, which keeps all the money to themselves. I don't see any benefits to anyone who actually deserves them.

            Second hand cannot directly benefit the game industry, it has nothing to do with it except taking the money that should have been poured into said industry.

            We could discuss this all night long, but it won't lead anywhere without some real life statistics that aren't made up. I'm basing my thoughts on this on many discussions on the subject and various inputs from the game journalism and alike...

            1. M Gale
              Mushroom

              Re: @Greg J Preece

              . I haven't heard of any case of "I sell games to be able to afford new games" and I live in a pretty poor country (I hope you'll understand that if you follow up with "I DO THIS", I won't consider it to be very credible).

              How old are you?

              I distinctly remember trading in a bunch of games to get a Sega Mega CD back in the day. I know a load of people who have traded in their games. There's a CeX in both of the nearby cities that are both chock full of pre-owned console games, though thanks to Steam's bullshit, they don't accept PC games any more.

              This is not "I DO THIS". This is "EVERYONE DOES THIS". And if you could do it, I bet you'd be doing it.

              Whether it benefits "the industry" or not is none of the industry's concern. It is my working copy, which I damned well will sell and to hell with anybody who wants to stop me. If that's going to kill the industry, then good. The industry, if it cannot survive second hand sales, deserves to die. In fact I can't wait for the current load of psychopathic bastards to hurry up and fuck off, so I can buy games from new companies, that cost less than 50 quid a title, don't want to install spyware, and don't break if I try to give them away.

            2. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: @Aoyagi Aichou

              If they cannot trust the customer not to resell the software, don't give it to the customer. If it's a dead market, stop complaining you cannot make money in it. We don't pay people to blow hot air all day, so think of the payment as a privilege and work for it.

            3. Greg J Preece

              Re: @Greg J Preece

              I haven't heard of any case of "I sell games to be able to afford new games"

              Then you are quite fantastically ignorant. This is the basis of entire companies. Using CeX as an example again, they don't just offer higher prices on exchange because they want to keep your custom; they do it because they know their customers are trading in on newer products.

              You can go into any Game store in the land at the time of a major game release, and you'll find a poster that says the customer can get the game for free (or a quid, or something similar), if they trade in two recent games from a pre-determined list. That's the store knowing that its customer base trade in on new games, and trying to control the games that are traded in in that transaction in a way that benefits them most.

              That you deny that this happens, let alone the scale at which it happens, speaks volumes. In fact, it's incredible to me. But then, you describe traders as parasites, and that they can't be regarded as good just because they benefit the consumer...

              And this?

              What it encourages are two things: no morals towards the developer and further purchasing of pre-owned games. Again, kids need to be taught patience and not wanting everything right now, especially if they can't afford it. Especially the kids in the US.

              How dare you sit in your position of privilege and tell those with less that they should learn to accept it, or that anything that benefits them should be stopped because it's supposedly harmful to an industry they're trying to help fund. Not everyone can afford what you can, and excluding those people from the target demographic leads to exactly what I suggested at the end of my last post. Your attitude stinks of "it's OK for me, so I'm going to get high and mighty with those less privileged."

              When I purchase a game, I have completed my "moral obligation" towards the developer. If I sell that game to someone else, perhaps the developer should have some fucking respect for my purchase?

            4. Raz

              Re: @Greg J Preece

              @Aoyagi Aichou Posted Friday 24th May 2013 22:18 GMT

              YOU don't seem to understand. Why would the publishers make money from second hand sales?

              I will make a little analogy for you: let's say you want to buy a car. You cannot afford a new car and are looking at an old one. But suddenly there is a new rule that says that if you want to buy an old car, you have to pay 80% of the car's price when it was new to the car manufacturer. Would you be happy with it? Would you afford it?

              Or let's put it this way: you bought a car and realized after 10,000 km/mi/whatever that you don't want or need it anymore or you need the money. You want to sell it, but no one would buy it because it's only a few thousands more to buy a new one, and who would pick used over new for about the same price? Would you be happy with it?

              On a personal note, your comments about American kids having to learn patience and you being from a "poor" country. Maybe they need to, maybe they don't. What does it have to do with second hand games? It just makes you look like an a**hole. It's like me saying that your country is poor, so it is populated by lazy people: you should work more so you can be all rich. You like it? You get it now?

              I don't live in US ) myself, just saying. I suppose that's what you mean by America, otherwise you bunch together mexicans, canadians, brazilians and so on.

            5. Daniel B.

              @Aoyagi Aichou

              I haven't heard of any case of "I sell games to be able to afford new games" and I live in a pretty poor country

              Your country must be incredibly rich if nobody's doing this, then. I can actually vouch for a country where quite a large percentage of the population is poor by most standards: Mexico. Selling old games to afford for new ones (or at least, other second-hand games) is pretty much the standard for most low to lower-middle income people. Piracy used to be rampant (and still is on the PC area), but it is virtually nonexistent on the PS3. Xbox360 is still pirate paradise, however. But hell, there's even a whole store that basically makes a living out of second-hand game sales, and the kids that trade in their games are usually the ones that don't have the money to buy new games.

              1. cs94njw

                Re: @Aoyagi Aichou

                I'm a good earner, but I have bills to pay, etc, etc. I love playing games, but I can't justify the full £35-£50 for a new one - when there's food to buy, a holiday to save for, debts to pay, etc. However, I can justify £20 for a second hand game.

                If I couldn't buy cheap second hand games, then I probably wouldn't buy any games.

                1. Aoyagi Aichou

                  Re: @Aoyagi Aichou

                  Here is something I originally didn't want to post, but I thought what the hell. Plus a new video ( http://youtu.be/2G_f8YBy39M ) turned out.

                  @M Gale: I'm old enough to remember that too, but I don't see how that's relevant. Maybe it has something to do with SEGA being among the richest game industry companies today? Oh wait.

                  I can sell my games, but I would never do that, because I'd be much happier of the buyer supported the publisher/developer instead of only a reseller. By "everyone" you mean what, the 5 people you know that do it? Or the communities founded on this whole business? Because I've asked around and nobody I asked (22 people from various countries) sells their games.

                  I somewhat agree with the last article though - under the current circumstances and practices anyway.

                  @AC: That's what MS is planning to do - not giving it to the customer. Your point?

                  @Greg J Preece: I don't deny this is happening. I deny knowing about this happening on a +5% scale. There is also huge difference between "I can't afford this" and "I get a game and I still have the money for weekend party".

                  Your melodramatic attitude is amusing. I dare because I know that the people who do that are most often, in fact, not "less fortunate". Nobody who can afford buying brand new titles is regardless of whether they sell the games to some second-hand store or not. Judging by your posts so far, you probably can't even imagine that. So yes, it would be OK for me if it followed what I said in my original post of this thread and if the money didn't go directly to MS. And yes, I'm not a huge fan of consumerism, so I can wait, buy the game when the price drops so I can afford it and still get (some of) the money to the developer/publisher and thus showing my support of what they did. It annoys me that people buy second-hand games and then complain about quality when they didn't contribute to anyone related to the game one bit. That is who I can get "all high and mighty" with and if you don't see it, we have nothing to talk about as the viewpoint you have is "it's better for me, screw everyone else, especially the people who made this great product and that are doing these great services".

                  @Roz: How could you compare something that suffers with aging, breakdowns, crashes, new parts and so on with software that is being patched? I don't think that's possible. (In fact I know, but I don't want to sound rude)

                  I apologize to any Americans not falling under the "consumerist American dream" stereotype, it's what usually comes to mind with impatient buyers who think they have the right to get the prices they can afford. What it had to do with second hand games was that someone said something along the lines of "think of the children who can't afford new games!". And yes, I like what you called the country I live in (that being Czech Rep.), because it's closer to truth than you might think :)

                  @Daniel B.: Actually, I wasn't talking about my country, I never am when speaking in general scope. The thing that I don't understand is why can't people wait a few months. I don't have the money to buy more than one (or two if I save upfront) new PC games more than bi-monthly either, but instead I buy several older games, some of them on sale. Hm, I think Reg. should make an analysis of the entire topic and its impacts (I only know of one which merely claimed that second-hand sales have incredibly lowered in the past 15 years). Anyway, I guess that if people started actually waiting for the prices to drop, they would eventually start dropping a lot faster. Look at what happened in Russia....

                  @DougS: Books are physical goods that has limited numbers, cars age. Incomparable

                  @sena.akada: Actually I believe what you paid for is a nicely packed license agreement that allows you using the software (which is still getting patches, updates, etc). As I said before though, if MS plans to implement this in the mentioned price with current practices and both while keeping the money to themselves, it's not acceptable on any level I can think of. Then again, I doubt the customers would bother to move to PS4 and thus expressing a no-no to Microsoft, we'll see about that.

                  @DavCrav: See above, aggressive person.

                  @David Webb: Can't disagree with that, but mainly because you use "they are losing nothing", which is the same argument for some piracy advocates. Even as a mere fan of several smaller developers I hate to think how much more money would they get if the second-hand buyers would wait a but and purchase it later, heh. A lawsuit would be nice as well as someone finally making clear whether software is service or product and what are the rights related to that.

                  @Ken Hagan: If you ask me, I'll always chose the originally cheaper, because I don't resell them... Also I think they give a third of the original price at best. The industry might make one 8 £ sale and one 4 £ sale later. I find that to be better for all, but it seems I might be the most patient person in the world judging by some of the enraged reactions here ^^

                  @Charles 9: Is Valve actually forbidding customers to sell their accounts? I think they do, just making sure.

                  @tom dial: Again with the cars? And I think that it's only logical that if someone sells their software, they won't be able to use it anymore.

                  @oldskool: It is always beneficial for someone or some thing. Good for someone or something. I can't think of anything that's beneficial for everyone and everything. Artificial restrictions? Of course, why don't they just remove all the restrictions and make the all the software open source? Yeah, that would be great business model. Of course people don't need to learn patience, but then people like you all come and claim that they have rights to do something with a product/service/whatever and to do it now. Makes me sad, really.

                  @DougS: Cars and other finished products again...

                  --

                  For the record, I do not agree with what MS is apparently about to do and I hope all of their management and other leaders will get fired as soon as possible. Whoever accused me of MS fanboyism probably didn't read my posts in other MS-related topics. What I do think, however, is that taxing second-hand sales certain way under certain conditions (mainly money going to devs and none of those idiotic practices like Live Gold, region locks, spying or banning small publishers, etc, etc...) might actually be beneficial to those who deserve it. "Reasonable" was probably poor wording in the original post.

                  1. M Gale

                    Re: @Aoyagi Aichou

                    @M Gale: I'm old enough to remember that too, but I don't see how that's relevant. Maybe it has something to do with SEGA being among the richest game industry companies today? Oh wait.

                    That cartridge-swapping and second hand sales happened with Nintendo too. Now, uhm, what's your point?

            6. sena.akada

              Re: @Greg J Preece

              Except this is missing some obvious points. If we are talking about purely physical copies, then they HAVE been paid for at some point. The developer is expecting to get paid twice for the same (physical) thing. Online passes had a more legitimate standing than this. At least with those you were paying solely for the right to access online content that costs the developers/publishers money to run (servers, bandwidth etc). This is "please pay us again for something that's already been paid for", and if the £35 is true, they really are more deluded than I already thought.

            7. DavCrav Silver badge

              Re: @Greg J Preece

              "What it encourages are two things: no morals towards the developer and further purchasing of pre-owned games. Again, kids need to be taught patience and not wanting everything right now, especially if they can't afford it. Especially the kids in the US."

              I admire your patience, not wanting everything now if they cannot afford it, and refusing the second-hand market because it has no morals towards the original developers.

              I assume then that you paid for your brand new house with cash, and similarly your new car? Wouldn't want any of those immoral second-hand houses paid for with a mortgage, or those terrible second-hand cars.

              Fuckwit.

            8. Ken Hagan Gold badge

              Re: @Greg J Preece

              "Second hand cannot directly benefit the game industry, it has nothing to do with it except taking the money that should have been poured into said industry."

              Which is the better deal for you: £10 for a game you can re-sell later for £5, or £8 for a game you can't? And if the person making the second-hand purchase is willing to pay £5 but not £8, the game industry is only going to sell one copy, so it is better to sell it for £10 rather than £8.

            9. tom dial Silver badge
              Flame

              Re: @Greg J Preece

              One specious argument after another. They apply pretty much unchanged to the used car market, for instance. Should the manufacturers then be enabled to eliminate or control that market?

              The only possibly legitimate argument I have seen, but not (so far) in this thread, is that the purchaser of a game might be able to sell it *and* continue to have it to play. That could well reduce the number of first sales Identical arguments can be and have been applied to eBooks and other digital media. I suspect rather strongly that the "problem" has a cryptographically based solution involving a difficult to replicate physical token that would have to be transferred to enable the game to work.

              1. Sorry that handle is already taken. Silver badge

                Re: tom dial

                They apply pretty much unchanged to the used car market, for instance. Should the manufacturers then be enabled to eliminate or control that market?

                Interestingly, some have tried it, to a degree: http://www.ukrweekly.com/old/archive/1998/099804.shtml

                I certainly do not support this kind of thing and while I don't know how it ended, I hope it didn't end well.

              2. Charles 9 Silver badge

                Re: @Greg J Preece

                But there HAS been controversy surrounding the cassette recorder and the VTR, to say nothing of CD and DVD recorders (both PC-based and consumer). So yes, ANY form of media that is not self-contained (like Nintendo's Game & Watch) has been in the copyright grey area of requiring an enabler. Audio cassettes and VTRs were too useful on the consumer end to stop. As for movies, it's a mixed bag. Pirating a movie is still possible, yes, but usually at reduced quality since trying to do a full-quality BD rip tends to work against most users' download allowances.

                As for your proposed solution, isn't that what Sony filed to patent with its RFID system? Also, isn't that why more and more games are going to online worlds and a multiplayer focus: to justify continual monitoring?

                1. M Gale

                  Re: @Greg J Preece

                  But there HAS been controversy surrounding the cassette recorder and the VTR, to say nothing of CD and DVD recorders (both PC-based and consumer).

                  And the people "enabling" the controversy promptly got told to stick it where the sun doesn't shine.

                  1. mmeier

                    Re: @Greg J Preece

                    Actually there is a fee on every blank tape / CDRW etc to cover a limited amount of private copy. Limited as in one "generation" only not as in Bittorrent. So the music and movie industry got their money. Same for printed media, fee is on printer / Scanner

                    1. MJI Silver badge

                      Re: Levy on blank media

                      So how do I claim mine back?

                      Since I filmed, edited, and burnt the DVDs why should I pay a levy?

            10. Anonymous Coward
              FAIL

              Re: @Greg J Preece

              > Beneficial to the end user doesn't always mean a good thing.

              Beneficial basically means "good". Companies make money by producing products or services that people want. The grants of artificial property that allow certain business models to exist, is done under the aegis of the people (or the sovereign that represents them). Beneficial can then be seen to maximise production and utility across competing use cases (where piracy falls short on #1, reselling games is not going to hurt #1 and pushes up #2).

              > The idea behind "selling games to be able to afford more games, so it's all good" is a bit simplistic.

              You seem to think the economy is zero-sum, which is even more simplistic.

              > Again, kids need to be taught patience and not wanting everything right now,

              What? Large companies are a rod to teach patience to children by artificial restrictions on copying bits, imposed on customers who have paid in full for licenses which the companies believe are non-transferable? OK, gotcha - but they're not your kids, and there is no "need" that they be "taught" such obvious bollocks.

            11. Wade Burchette
              FAIL

              @Aoyagi Aichou

              "Second hand cannot directly benefit the game industry, it has nothing to do with it except taking the money that should have been poured into said industry."

              Remind me again how many PRE-owned games never had at least one original owner? By definition pre-owned games must have had one owner to begin with. Therefore the publisher already made money off the sale. What you are suggesting is that game publishers keep getting money no matter how many times a the physical media is sold. In the US of A (where I live), such a proposal actually violates the first-sale doctrine. Once the product is sold to the consumer, the producer no longer has any right to determine what is done with the legally obtained copy. Furthermore, pre-owned is, by definition, not pirated because some already legally bought the product.

              "What it encourages are two things: no morals towards the developer and further purchasing of pre-owned games. Again, kids need to be taught patience and not wanting everything right now, especially if they can't afford it. Especially the kids in the US."

              Huh? Again, since the publisher already made money on the sale, how is it teaching kids not to have morals? The way I see it, charging people to sell a product that you already made money on is immoral. And where I live, waiting until someone sells a game so you can buy it used teaches patience. Since when did this turn into bizarro world where up is down and black is white?

              "I haven't heard of any case of "I sell games to be able to afford new games""

              Well, here is your first one then. I did at several times. When I was younger and poorer, I sold games I no longer wanted to play to pay for new games and didn't like enough to keep. The store would pay me more if I turned around and bought another game with my trade-in. I did it several times. And if the store gave more value for purchasing new games, others must have done it too.

              "I'm basing my thoughts on this on many discussions on the subject and various inputs from the game journalism and alike"

              Yeah, like they won't be neutral and unbiased ... (rolls eyes).

              How would you feel if Microsoft and Apple required a person to pay a fee every time a computer was sold to someone else? Paying a fee to publisher to buy a game is the same concept really. In both instances the original creator already made money. Since they already made money on the product, why should they entitled to make more money every time the same product is resold?

              1. MJI Silver badge

                Re: Selling games

                Isn't it the case that most games being sold S/H are either poor games or annual rehash games?

                Decent games get kept.

                I can understand the reasoning behind online passes but not a levy on games.

        3. DougS Silver badge
          Mushroom

          Game resellers as "parasites"

          How are game resellers any different than used bookstores, or used car dealers? I guess you think they're all parasites too? Or is the game industry a special snowflake that deserves special treatment under the law? If Sony and Microsoft sell consoles at a lower price hoping to make it up on games, that's their choice, and doesn't give them leave to carve out a special right to inhibit reselling of property that other industries don't enjoy.

          If someone reads a book, watches a DVD, plays a game, or wants to acquire a new car or new phone they shouldn't be required to keep it forever or throw it away, just so the company making it can make more money by not competing with sales of their own products on the used market.

          I'm sure Apple and Samsung, or for that matter Mercedes and Toyota, wouldn't mind it if lawmakers chose to change the law on their own and hand them much larger profits, but only a company like Microsoft could be arrogant and stupid enough to think they can do something like this on their own. And this idiot fanboy is even cheering them on! What a world!

          1. Charles 9 Silver badge

            Re: Game resellers as "parasites"

            I think the big thing is that books, cars, appliances, and so on are self-contained. They operate completely in and of themselves with nothing else required except maybe for utility supplies (power, water, etc.).

            Computer software, OTOH, isn't really self-contained. They require the device to work in, and that's where the grey area comes in. Because now you have the situation of the ENABLER. And in this case, the enabler can be a service or a subscription: something that establishes a contract with terms and conditions that can usually be legally enforced.

            Microsoft and Valve can use this angle and in doing so bring in the business software agreement, which isn't always a sale but a lease or service contract, with ink on pen and everything. Doing that can get the business software makers like Adobe and Autodesk on their side (Microsoft actually has play in the business software market as well—with Office). This could force the court to decide between allowing software leases/service contracts or nullifying a number of big business agreements.

            1. DougS Silver badge

              @Charles 9

              I think the big thing is that books, cars, appliances, and so on are self-contained. They operate completely in and of themselves with nothing else required except maybe for utility supplies (power, water, etc.).

              ----

              Making up definitions to suit you, I guess? How are LPs, 8 track, CDs, VHS tapes or DVDs self contained? They aren't any more than a game disc is. Both require a separate device to "enable" them. So if you think game companies have a right to restrict used sales, I guess Hollywood really missed its chance!

              The courts have allowed EULAs only to the point where they don't overstep what is legally allowable There are illegal things in EULAs now, but they've never been tested in court, because Microsoft and other software makers don't want them tested, because they know they'd lose.

              If they upheld the right for Microsoft to create a EULA with illegal terms, such as those that restricted sale of used items, what is to stop Ford from selling cars with a EULA? They could require you to visit a Ford authorized service center every 10,000 miles to have the car checked out and enabled for another 10,000 miles of travel. If you refuse, once you go over the 10,000 mile mark, the next time you turn the car off, it won't start, but flash a message telling you to call a Ford service center and have it towed in for service. They could require you to pay Ford a fee to transfer the warranty to someone else, or even to sell the car to someone else.

              Why should that kind of thing be permitted for software, but not for cars? Just because of a EULA, and because you have invented this "self-contained" and "enabler" bullshit to suit your argument?

          2. mmeier

            Re: Game resellers as "parasites"

            @Game resellers as "parasites"

            Actually used books are different from used games.

            A used game is no different from a new one these days. Manuals are PDF files so there is no "missing parts", no "coffee stains" and no "pages faling out". The fifth installation still is "Condition: New". So many people who won't buy used books will buy used games.

            Books can not be "copied and sold on" as easily as a game can. And they typically take longer to reach the "used book" market than games.

            Used cars are not a 1:1 either since car manufacturers and car sellers actually DO make money from used cars:

            + Spare parts for maintenance and repairs (3rd party body parts have legal problems)

            + Most retailers also sell the used cars

            + Most retailers are also repair shops (at least here in germany)

            + Reputation as "sturdy" and "can still get spares after x years" helps - Just ask Crapwagen<<<Volkswagen, they relie on that for sales since 1949

            1. M Gale

              Re: Game resellers as "parasites"

              Books can not be "copied and sold on" as easily as a game can. And they typically take longer to reach the "used book" market than games.

              They most certainly can be copied, more easily than games. Place each page face down on a scanner and have fun. Laborious is not hard. It'll just take a while, and it only needs to be done once. Even so... so what? Not an excuse to say that I am no longer allowed to dispose of my property in whatever way I see fit.. and yes, one working copy of a game is my property if I have bought or been given it, whether new or second hand.

              (3rd party body parts have legal problems)

              Never heard of after-market parts? Sure, if your car is under warranty, you only use official parts if you want to keep the warranty. Otherwise, there's plenty of mods and bits for cars that have nothing to do with the original manufacturers.

              I still don't see why preventing someone from disposing of their own property however they wish, is ever a good thing. It's a game, not a nuclear weapon.

              1. mmeier

                Re: Game resellers as "parasites"

                Good luck buying visible body parts for a car that are identical in look to the originals. Not legal in the EU. Different looking ones are but if I want a simple replacement for a damaged part and not go second hand- buy original. And there are reasons to buy new namely the way some plastic parts got brittle with age

                Oh and since copying a book is so simple would you mind copying the bible for me, it is only a thousand pages or so, done in an afternoon or three. Time needed is part of easy...

                1. OldBiddie

                  Re: Game resellers as "parasites"

                  "Good luck buying visible body parts for a car that are identical in look to the originals. Not legal in the EU"

                  I can go the the scrap yard and get parts from there no trouble at all.

                  1. mmeier

                    Re: Game resellers as "parasites"

                    That is an ORIGINAL part. No problem with that IF it exists. I was refering to copys from another manufacturer.

                    1. M Gale

                      Re: Game resellers as "parasites"

                      That is an ORIGINAL part. No problem with that IF it exists. I was refering to copys from another manufacturer.

                      You mean like the original game copies that I'm arguing you should be allowed to dispose of as you see fit? Including giving away and reselling?

                2. M Gale

                  Re: Game resellers as "parasites"

                  Oh and since copying a book is so simple would you mind copying the bible for me, it is only a thousand pages or so, done in an afternoon or three. Time needed is part of easy...

                  Sure. Guillotine the spine off and shove it through a document feeder. Come back in half an hour.

                  If it's a "high speed" scanner as used in the Census, make that 5 minutes.

                  1. mmeier

                    Re: Game resellers as "parasites"

                    You want to re-sell the bible so that is not an option.

                    1. M Gale

                      Re: Game resellers as "parasites"

                      You want to re-sell the bible so that is not an option.

                      I want to dispose of my property how I see fit, whether that's a copy of the King James Edition, or a copy of Doom.

                      Now stop being silly. It just looks bad on you.

                      1. mmeier

                        Re: Game resellers as "parasites"

                        You should stop looking in the mirror while posting

                        1. M Gale

                          Re: Game resellers as "parasites"

                          You should stop looking in the mirror while posting

                          You should come up with a good reason as to why I can't give away my own stuff.

                          1. mmeier

                            Re: Game resellers as "parasites"

                            You should learn to understand that you CAN. Your own stuff in case of XBox1 is the DVD/Blueray not the content. Do with the physical media what you want.

                            What you are PAYING for is the service of the XBox1 "network" like updates, game servers etc. And THAT you rent not own. So the price basically is the one time fee for a non-transferable membership in the "XBox1 Club".

                            If another guy wants that membership - he has to buy his own.

                            1. M Gale

                              Re: Game resellers as "parasites"

                              You should learn to understand that you CAN. Your own stuff in case of XBox1 is the DVD/Blueray not the content. Do with the physical media what you want.

                              No, I buy a copy of the game.

                              Which I can then give away.

                              Unless it's on Xbox One or Steam, of course.

                              But keep cheering on the psychopaths if you like. You'll get everything you deserve. Just a shame the rest of us end up with it too.

              2. MJI Silver badge

                Re: SH Cars

                However if a manufacturer messes up its support of older cars, people will not buy their newer cars. Peugeot entered my don't buy list twenty years ago for really poor spares supply on ex Rootes Group cars

            2. DougS Silver badge

              @mmeier

              Books can not be "copied and sold on" as easily as a game can. And they typically take longer to reach the "used book" market than games.

              ----

              To your second point. Its the game publisher's fault games enter the used market too quickly. They must not be very good if people get bored with them that quickly. Sometimes you buy a book that you read once and know you'll never read again, so you sell it or give it to a friend. Other times you buy a book and you come back to it again and again over the years. The game publishers need to write those kind of games, not the kind you can beat in a week. Who wants to pay $60 for that?

              To your first point, I think most people would have no problem with Microsoft or Sony doing something to block you from playing a game off your hard drive once it had been installed on someone else's hard drive (unless you got the disc back and re-authorized it on your hard drive, which would de-authorize it on the other person's hard drive) Making it so one disc can only be able to be played on one console at a time is fine. Just don't make people pay to install it on different consoles, or otherwise cause problems that prevent someone from loaning out their game to others in the same way they can loan out a book, a DVD, or their car.

              You know damn well that what Microsoft is reportedly doing goes way beyond this. They're trying to make it the equivalent of having to pay a publisher if you borrowed a friend's book in order to read it, or having to pay Ford something if he sold you his car. Games are not special and deserve absolutely NO special treatment. If the console gaming industry can't survive playing by the same rules as everyone else, then it deserves to die. I'm sure some people mourned the loss of the telegraph, too, but that doesn't mean we should have let the telegraph industry survive longer by letting them make special rules.

              1. M Gale
                Thumb Up

                Re: @mmeier

                I'm sure some people mourned the loss of the telegraph, too, but that doesn't mean we should have let the telegraph industry survive longer by letting them make special rules.

                Funnily enough, you can send telegrams if you wish. The service was re-introduced by BT circa 2003-ish.

                Mostly due to demand rather than some kind of effort to force email out through lobbying and lawyering, though. Somehow I can't see people lining up to demand that they be unable to give their stuff away.

    2. David Webb

      Re: Opinion, don't stone me

      Hurting the used game market will actually damage game companies, not put more money in their pocket.

      Joe Average wants the latest CoD, he only has £10, he runs off to the store with his £10 and a couple of used games, he trades in the used games and the £10 for the latest CoD. Net effect, the publisher/dev's get the profit from the sale of CoD.

      Remove the ability to trade in, Joe now cannot afford CoD so he doesn't buy it. Net effect, no money for the publisher.

      Joe NotSoAverage only buys used games, he does that buy trading in games and paying a little. Publisher already have their money (from the original sale) so are losing nothing. Remove the used games market and Joe NotSoAverage switches to a system where they can buy used games. Net effect, no money for the publisher after the original sale.

      Joe Rich buys just new games, he buys two a month at £50 a game. After a year he decides he wants to sell his console with 24 games so sticks the console + games on Ebay. Who would then buy the console if, after you buy it on Ebay, you have to spend £35 per game to register the 24 games? £840 to register the games, on top of the price of game + console from Ebay.

      Personally I'm waiting for the lawsuit, MS are trying to enforce EULA on to 2nd users which goes against the first sale doctrine and other such laws which prevent people from applying rules after a product is sold.

      1. Richard 15

        Re: Opinion, don't stone me

        The problem is, many nations do not apply the doctrine of first sale to software products.

        In theory, you don't own software, merely a license to use it. Some companies allow licenses

        to be transferred, others do not. I know of cases where companies have gone bankrupt, another

        company buys the hardware, but the manufacturer of the hardware states that they do not have

        the right to run the software on that hardware. Seems stupid, but its true.

  4. Daniel B.

    Article title misleading

    What actually will happen is that the hobbling of second-hand Xbox1 games will DOOM the Xbox1.

    Which suits me fine. MS already had done some EA-style evilness on the console market by charging for online play (something PC gamers haven't seen since the early 90's) so they deserve to lose the gaming market.

    Meanwhile the current gens will still thrive, plus WiiU and PS4 as they don't have these stupid schemes on their platforms.

    1. El Andy

      Re: Article title misleading

      I bet anything PS4 has a similar, if not identical scheme.

      Why? Here is the "real" problem. Gamer's want to be able to install the game to the console HD and then be able to play without digging around and putting the disc in for no real reason. Console manufacturers know this and want that to be the way things work too (it's the obvious intermediate step before download only becomes plausible).

      So now you have a problem, once the game is installed there is literally nothing to stop the player giving the disc away and all of their friends installing it on their console. And then all of *their* friends doing the same. And so on. The physical media has become disconnected from the actual value. The only way to prevent this in any realistic sense is at least some form of DRM, it's just inevitable.

      Second hand game sales are still useful to console manufacturers too though (even if game development companies would rather they went away entirely), which is why you'll almost certainly find that both offer some means for de-activating installed copies and reselling them on. It may well involve a small fee, but that's really no different to the fee Game (or whomever) are charging you when they buy your old game and then mark it up and sell on to someone else.

      1. Mike Brown

        Re: Article title misleading

        there is an easy fix, that wont kill the 2nd hand market, and wont charge custoemrs extra. Each game can be numbered individually, and the consoles are mostly net connected, so when someone puts an already installed game into another console, the network finds the other installed copy and kills it (at least until the disc is reinserted). simple, elegent, and wont cost the consumer.

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I wouldn't worry.

    First off, this is almost certainly illegal right across the EU - the EC has upheld the exhaustion of exclusive distribution at first sale time and time and time again, even in digital distribution.

    More importantly, this is so morally reprehensible that there'll be a tremendous consumer backlash and the plans will be dropped. They're utterly unworkable either way - what are they supposed to do, charge gamers for playing used games in America (where presumably they can get away with it) but not the rest of the world?

    1. Tom 260

      Not sure if they can get away with it in America, pretty sure they have a First Sale law/doctrine that lets people sell on pretty much anything so long as it's not cross-border? Since this is (apparently) requiring people to trade in at specified stores, rather than being able to sell it to someone else directly.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        One would assume that Vernor v Autodesk would be applied, which upheld the right to sell software licenses as any other property. The only trick is you have to have some method of ensuring that the previous owner can stop [legitimately] using the product. In this day and age that is obviously easy enough.

        1. Charles 9 Silver badge

          But Vernor v. Autodesk was thrown out. Turns out the copies were STOLEN (physically) from the company, who was under CONTRACT to return them to Autodesk for a new version.

          Bet you Valve and Microsoft will make their game systems SERVICES and the games merely pay-to-play KEYS (or passes, as previously noted), meaning the resale is merely of a used (and thus useLESS) one-time key. IOW, it's REALLY exhausted.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Oracle v UsedSoft

      This was my first thought upon reading the article.

    3. Killraven
      Mushroom

      Worry.

      You're missing the point. This is most likely to be perfectly legal in the EU, as it doesn't stop/forbid reselling your games. It just creates a ridiculously low price barrier, so low that it's really not worth trying to sell a game. Then it creates a ridiculously high price to re-register the used game, so high that it's really not worth buying a used game.

      I think a larger point is being missed overall. The sale of used games has been a small boost, financially, for stores who have lost massive sales due to being able to just buy and download games. Take that away as well, why would anybody who has an internet connection (which now translates to every console owner) even bother to go to a store anymore? This could, seriously, be the death knell for brick-and-mortar stores.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Worry.

        "This is most likely to be perfectly legal in the EU, as it doesn't stop/forbid reselling your games..."

        That's exactly what it does. The ECJ ruling made it clear that even if the publishers want to take the position they do in the US that they're "only selling a license" rather than selling a game, those magic words don't make any difference. Whether you're buying a game or a license the transaction is the same - it is an outright purchase. The license is yours to sell and placing punitive terms in the EULA* to try and extend the rights of distribution beyond first sale is not going to fly. They're saying the second person to hold the license must obey different terms to the first person to hold the license - the ECJ ruling made it clear the terms must be carried over when the "license" is transferred.

        *It's also almost certainly the case that the EULA in its entirety is not enforceable in the EU, as it's a shrink-wrapped license, and again we're permanently buying a product rather than temporarily renting a service, making contractual obligations questionable at best. It's like Ford demanding a royalty if you sell on a car that you bought from them. Or Penguin demanding a royalty for reselling a book. Or Wrigley demanding a royalty for giving your best mate a piece of fucking chewing gum. It's utterly abhorrent and the ECJ will do well to completely stamp the practice out.

        1. mmeier

          Re: Worry.

          EULA can be and is partially solved by stressing "download the game, buy CD as an add-on". The online platform does have a "I read the licence and agree" checkmark BEFORE the buy is done. That satisfied the "can read contract before purchase" element.

          The rest can and will likely be solved by making the CD an access key rather that the software itself (at least from the legal point of view). So you can re-sell the disk but the access fee has to be repaid by the new owner. Just like cinema tickets. Optional a "split price" so the 50€ includes a "35€ admission fee" and you might even be able to order a 15€ CD without the fee and pay separatly.

          1. Rufusstan

            Re: Worry.

            The Oracle decision last year in the European courts seems pretty straightforward, and they have covered most of the workarounds that Microsoft could use.

            Sell a physical product, and the owner can sell it on with no restrictions.

            Sell a license and the owner can sell the license under the same conditions. (Or access key or whatever they decide to call it). The bottom line is if they have sold you something to let you use their software, you should be able to sell on whatever 'that' is.

            Microsoft's activation fee for a used game would be interpreted that they are opposing the sale (new owner can only use the game if they give us money), which is specifically excluded.

            The cinema ticket idea suggests the only work around I can think of (ignoring the fact you can sell on tickets), and that would be to sell games with time-restricted licenses. It would open a bigger can of worms I think. At one end, you have the likely riot when gamers realise their copy of the latest AAA title actually only lets them use it for a year. At the other end, if they put in licenses that are active over a long period, someone will quickly argue that they are effectively (in law) unlimited, and all the above applies.

            Long term, its going to push everyone to Software as a service, but as was pointed out elsewhere, it just moves the argument on ownership to a new point.

            Sadly, Microsoft seem to have everything in place to make a system that works. Removing games from your account makes selling games on very practical. The other main irritation -- lending games, could easily be facilitated by giving say, 48 hours leeway between putting a disc in and needing to activate. You give a game to a mate, and they get a couple of days to try it out.

            1. Charles 9 Silver badge

              Re: Worry.

              "The cinema ticket idea suggests the only work around I can think of (ignoring the fact you can sell on tickets), and that would be to sell games with time-restricted licenses."

              Thing is, the ticket, like a game disc, is perfectly resellable (even Steam allows you to gift-wrap a game and pass it on by whatever means you desire) UNTIL it's used (when you pass the gate, open the package, activate the code). In all three cases, it's now marked expended and nonrefundable.

              1. Charles 9 Silver badge

                Re: Worry.

                Also, Microsoft already allows all-Internet downloads of games on the 360. Expect this to continue in the XB1, making it almost exactly like the Steam model. Since you can now go all-virtual, it can also be more-thoroughly enforced as a subscription or service.

                To use an old joke of the late 19th century: "Ticket to Chicago--used only once."

    4. Mr. Peterson

      coming soon: biometric ID chips integrated into the hand-held controllers

      SAFETY FIRST!

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Xbox modding / rechipping, Gamer Profile hacking...

    Every new game will almost certainly require activation. Therefore always-on will be a implicit requirement irrelevant of whatever M$ says today!. A 2nd hand market is essential as lot of games are hyped. How many are mere cut-scenes, contain mostly QTR interaction, or have non-linear on a rail gameplay that's vastly different from the trailer? That's not a problem when you can trade them in. But with Game, HMV and Xtra-vision all gone belly-up the competition for trading in games has also diminished.

    I foresee formal profile / game exchanges popping up. That will require sharing profiles or exchanging game profiles over the net. This is easy to do as profiles and game saves can be saved to a USB drive. I also see a growing market in legal and illegal utilities that can crack profiles. Expect more cracked and modded xboxes for sure. In S America and Asia 1-in-2 xboxes that are sold are rechipped at point-of-sale in order to play copied games that cost under 2 euro each.

    Overall, I see M$ alienating gamers with these tactics, much as music and video DRM has pushed people towards BitTorrent. I think M$ will be the long term loser. Especially when users realize that US markets get the benefit from added GOT content while the rest of the world is locked-out...

    1. Steve Knox
      Thumb Down

      Re: Xbox modding / rechipping, Gamer Profile hacking...

      Every new game will almost certainly require activation. Therefore always-on will be a implicit requirement irrelevant of whatever M$ says today!.

      That's completely wrong. Activation does not require a persistent connection; it requires a one-time connection. Connect; activate; disconnect; play. Anything more is by definition not activation but ongoing monitoring.

      A 2nd hand market is essential as lot of games are hyped. How many are mere cut-scenes, contain mostly QTR interaction, or have non-linear on a rail gameplay that's vastly different from the trailer? That's not a problem when you can trade them in.

      So you're saying that if you pay over the odds for a crap game, that's currently alright because you can get some money back by foisting it of on some other unsuspecting sap? Do unto others 'cause others have done unto you, eh?

      I avoid the problem of buying overhyped crap games by a) waiting for a trustworthy review, b) trying out games before buying them whenever possible (shareware, rentals, friends), and c) avoiding publishers who are known to be crap.

      No second hand market needed.

      1. M Gale

        Re: Xbox modding / rechipping, Gamer Profile hacking...

        So you're saying that if you pay over the odds for a crap game, that's currently alright because you can get some money back by foisting it of on some other unsuspecting sap? Do unto others 'cause others have done unto you, eh?

        One man's muck is another man's brass. I've had a couple of high-rated games that I've played a couple of times and then never touched again. FIFA on the NDS for one.

        And what do you think of the game publishers themselves, willingly foisting shit upon the public? And then not even letting them GIVE it away?

        The games industry, in its current state, requires immediate termination with extreme prejudice.

        1. Steve Knox

          Re: Xbox modding / rechipping, Gamer Profile hacking...

          One man's muck is another man's brass.

          I agree. That's why I'm picky about my reviews, and prefer games that I can try before buying.

          I've had a couple of high-rated games that I've played a couple of times and then never touched again. FIFA on the NDS for one.

          So the review part of my suggestion didn't work. Did you consider renting, or seeing if a friend had it? Failing that, you could have fallen back on my third precept: avoid crap publishers. EA is the king of that domain, in my book. They've had one or two titles which have been slightly tempting in the past decade, but their business practices (DRM, in-game advertising, crappy support, etc.) have dissuaded me from buying those titles, and I have yet to be disappointed.

          And what do you think of the game publishers themselves, willingly foisting shit upon the public? And then not even letting them GIVE it away?

          That was my point. AC was complaining about publishers selling overhyped crap, but then saying it was acceptable as long as he could dump it on someone else. Surely a better solution is one where the crap games don't get inflicted on anyone -- say by ensuring methods of trying before buying..

          1. Richard 12 Silver badge

            Re: Xbox modding / rechipping, Gamer Profile hacking...

            Renting...

            Are you absolutely sure that's going to be possible?

            Because how is "I rent game for a week and return it, then you rent game" any different to "I buy game play for a week then give it to you"?

            Activations as described would kill the rental market as well, because you can't prevent resale without preventing rental, unless there are specific "rental" versions with a different DRM management system that would make them expensive and buggy, and limited to specific games.

            1. Charles 9 Silver badge

              Re: Xbox modding / rechipping, Gamer Profile hacking...

              It might be possible under Microsoft's system. Valve already has a system like that with Weekend Passes: tryouts of certain games once in a while. Perhaps Microsoft can offer Redbox/BBX copies specifically for those machines which, when inserted, ONLY work as long as that disc is in place. Afterward, the installation may remain, allowing you to buy a pass into the full version.

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Xbox modding / rechipping, Gamer Profile hacking...

          "The games industry, in its current state, requires immediate termination with extreme prejudice."

          Ok, but where does that get us...? I passionately feel that Indie developers should have easy access to the PS4 and Xbox1 to insure innovation prospers....

          ....

          1. M Gale

            Re: Xbox modding / rechipping, Gamer Profile hacking...

            "The games industry, in its current state, requires immediate termination with extreme prejudice."

            Ok, but where does that get us...? I passionately feel that Indie developers should have easy access to the PS4 and Xbox1 to insure innovation prospers....

            You would have a different games industry in a different state. In fact I think if EA, Ubisoft, Valve and the rest of the psychopaths were to fuck off right now, that would be a crapton of market for indy developers to capture. They'd fill that vacuum up in no time, I'm sure.

            Anything is better than the current state.

            1. mmeier

              Re: Xbox modding / rechipping, Gamer Profile hacking...

              The independent developers would like to fill in for EA and others but they are busy developing fully functional OSS drivers for ATI and NVIDIA as well as Exchange and Sharepoint replacements

              1. M Gale

                Re: Xbox modding / rechipping, Gamer Profile hacking...

                The independent developers would like to fill in for EA and others but they are busy developing fully functional OSS drivers for ATI and NVIDIA as well as Exchange and Sharepoint replacements

                really?

                you lie.

                But then that's not really surprising.

                Bet you think I don't pay for anything either.

                So are you going to carry on stereotyping, or are you just going to admit that you want to be paid multiple times for one copy of the product?

                1. This post has been deleted by its author

                2. mmeier

                  Re: Xbox modding / rechipping, Gamer Profile hacking...

                  I do not program games, never did and given my training and specialities likely never will. So nobody will pay me (or any person I know) multiple times for one copy.

                  1. M Gale

                    Re: Xbox modding / rechipping, Gamer Profile hacking...

                    Well I don't (yet), but after four years doing the access and then honours degree course for Computer Games Technology, I think it might be nice to make a few simple 50p things at some point. Work up to bigger things later on.

                    Don't worry, you'll be able to transfer ownership. As you can see, I'm not a big fan of bullshit restrictions management.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Xbox modding / rechipping, Gamer Profile hacking...

        No Mr. Steve Knox. I respect that my tastes are my tastes and others will differ. I for one, hate cut scenes, but others aren't that bothered and I respect that! I love driving and FPS games, but others love RPG and strategy. Its all good. Chillax brother...

      3. Michael Habel Silver badge
        FAIL

        Re: Xbox modding / rechipping, Gamer Profile hacking...

        But lul there-in belays the Sting or is it not, that you CAN NOT lend out, give away or in this case RENT an XBONE Game, cause of this XBONE-headed DRM?

        1. Charles 9 Silver badge

          Re: Xbox modding / rechipping, Gamer Profile hacking...

          XBONE games are SERIALIZED. Special numbers could be set aside for "rental" discs. Also, it's possible to press custom versions of a game for use in rental machines.

          As for trying to exploit the "rental" discs, remember we're talking BD discs with ROM Marks (where the serial #'s likely to be placed). Recorders can't duplicate the ROM Mark.

  7. Craig 2
    Big Brother

    Interesting times....

    It will be interesting to see if the general public accept this new paradigm of software `ownership` because it's a one-chance opportunity to nip it in the bud. If Microsoft make this console a success, it pretty much paves the way for ALL future consoles to follow their lead since it's the holy grail of publisher control. This is Joe public's last chance to stand up for what's right.... don't squander it.

    1. JLV Silver badge
      Thumb Up

      Re: Interesting times....

      Upvoted and wish I could do it twice.

      Now, am a PS3 user myself and Sony should clever up and see it as their big chance to have PS4 dominate the hell out of Xbox. Not that I am a Sony fan, far from but Sony has a golden opportunity to look nice.

      Seriously, folks, vote with your wallets. Stick to Xbox 360 a few extra months, give a miss to the new CoD and Halo for just a tad. And you'll get your Start menu back here too.

      On another note, if Eadon plays his hand well, he could be credible in ranting here (yeah, well, and Greece could balance its budget next year).

    2. Teiwaz Silver badge

      Re: Interesting times....

      It's not just MS intent on stopping second-hand games sales, I believe Sony plan on similar measures, and I personally avoided a Resident Evil game for he Nintendo 3Ds due to similar shenanigans.

      I got interested in consoles back in the late nineties when I got disallusioned with PC games due to the constant H/W requirement jumps on every new game (plus falling in love with the N64 due to Goldeneye and Ocarina of Time/Majoras Mask). I've been entertained by suceeding generation of consoles, N64, Dreamcast, Ps2, Xbox, Gamecube and Xbox 360.

      However I doubt I'll be investing in any of the up and coming consoles, I just don't see the point in pandering to a greedy industry at £40 odd outlay a game, without recourse to being able to trade in a poor hoice of game for another or picking up the type of game I might not normally play for £10-£15, or even picking up a copy of a game that stopped working due to scratches for cheap so I can play it again.

      Let me give you an example. I've bought Rockstar Games 'Bully' four times. 1st when it was released on the Ps2 as 'Canis Canim Edit' (far cooler name bty, but I guess nobody got the reference) again when it was reeleased on the Xbox 360 as Bully, Scholarship edition, partly for the 'crap' extra content, but also because my ps2 died. Some time later, I got another ps2 for nostalgia;s sake and another copy (second hand this time) of Canis Canim edit for the same reason, then again for the xbox 360 when the ps2 was unplayable due to not having access to a tv to plug it into and most of my things were in storage. That amounts to twice for full price and twice second hand, and I don't rate the extra content added in the scholarship edition as worth full price the extra classes were mostly dull and repetitive and gave no extra abiitiers just costumes. There are other examples, Summoner (ps2), Summoner 2 (mostly due to disk scratches),

      Shadow Hearts (bought cheap, got me into turn-based RPGs), bought most the others in the series full-price, plus Final Fantasy series Ix, X, X-2, XI, VII, XII, XIII etc, I would never have bought all these games, most full price if I had not initially chanced £12 for that second-hand copy of Shadow Hearts.

      I'm most entertained by the unfolding story in games so I don't much go in for online play, and I see no reason for a console to require network access to work, and loading up a game has recently become a stress reliever when I'm on temp contract and staying somewhere without net access ot the nets down. A console that needs to 'dial up' before letting you play sounds like a bad idea on those occassionss or in places or homes were the net is not reacable via broadband yet or not affordable by the household.

      I suspect, unfortunately, that this is the 'march of progress' and the majority will accept this and buy these new consoles in droves, oblivious to driving the nail in the coffin of the second hand games market, and I am in the minority, as usual.

    3. scarshapedstar

      Re: Interesting times....

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nS_s9gyjYcQ

      Highly recommend this video series on why the used game market is lame.

  8. Justin Pasher
    Stop

    Steam vs Xbox game = invalid comparison

    Assuming that it is impossible to pirate an Xbox One game (yes, I'm sure it will eventually happen), I don't see why people are missing the most obvious reason why you can't compare something like Steam to an Xbox game:

    Once you sell the Xbox game, you don't have it anymore! Period.

    With something like Steam, you already have a copy of all the files needed to run the game, so it is MUCH easier to maintain a copy of the game. That's why "reselling" a used game on Steam wouldn't work. You don't have that problem with an Xbox game because you don't have a copy of the game anymore.

    Obviously once the hackers figure out a way to rip and play "backed up", the argument becomes moot, but until then, there's absolutely no comparison. There's also really no logical reason in my mind why they shouldn't allow second hand games just like the past (excluding corporate greed, politics, etc).

    1. Kaltern
      Pirate

      Re: Steam vs Xbox game = invalid comparison

      Thats not a very good analogy I'm afraid. Steam requires a Key for the game you're trying to play to be linked to your Steam account. If it isn't - it won't run.

      XBox games will be on bluray - and you can easily copy these in the same way as having the required files on your PC for a Steam game.

      Neither will run unless you circumvent the DRM.

    2. M Gale

      Re: Steam vs Xbox game = invalid comparison

      You do know that the Steamworks bullshit that locks your game to your account applies to physical CD games too?

      That's right. If your game requires Steam, you cannot give it away, let alone sell it, once you've used it even once.

      1. Charles 9 Silver badge

        Re: Steam vs Xbox game = invalid comparison

        So? The disc is merely a one-time-use key with a copy of the installation so you can do it offline. You can get the same stuff off the Internet. No difference.

        1. M Gale

          Re: Steam vs Xbox game = invalid comparison

          The disc is merely a one-time-use key with a copy of the installation so you can do it offline.

          No, it is not. Valve might like you to think it is. Why should you care what Valve think unless you are personally benefitting from this arrangement?

    3. El Andy

      Re: Steam vs Xbox game = invalid comparison

      @Justin Pasher: "Once you sell the Xbox game, you don't have it anymore! Period."

      Except that with Xbox One you'll install the game to hard disk when you first get it and then won't need the disc to play any more. So the situation is exactly the same as Steam and needs more than just "you have the disc" as protection

  9. 1Rafayal
    Windows

    One thing that gets me about this, as a collector of video game consoles and their games, what happens in 15 years time when all these servers that are set up to allow you to play the games you have bought get turned off?

    Are Microsoft, or who ever will run these servers, going to keep them up for ever? Or will some sort of command be sent out to allow consoles to play games etc?

    I know it might be a silly idea, but I can pick up an Atari 2600 now and play Canyon Bomber with no problems, in fact I enjoy playing this game - how is this going to impact us in the future?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Its probably very hard to "enable" the games

      I completely agree. I also suspect that it will be, by design, very very hard to run these games without a server and authentication.

    2. Ken Hagan Gold badge

      "what happens in 15 years time when all these servers that are set up to allow you to play the games you have bought get turned off?"

      This? http://www.theregister.co.uk/2013/05/22/acetrax_closure_drm_woes/

    3. El Andy

      DRM isn't going to make a blind bit of difference, game developers are moving parts of the game to server based infrastructures anyway to run various backend parts of games. When the backends get shut down, it's not going to make a blind bit of difference what DRM was or wasn't on it, the game will not work.

      1. M Gale

        game developers are moving parts of the game to server based infrastructures anyway to run various backend parts of games

        For no other reason than DRM.

  10. john devoy

    Mad greed

    This mad greed can be reversed quite easily, console buyers just need to refuse to buy the xboxOne until MS get their heads of their arses and stop taking their customers for total morons.

    1. Charles 9 Silver badge

      Re: Mad greed

      And if Sony does it, too, meaning it's down to the WiiU and the colonoscopy either way? IOW, what happens when ALL of them do it? Abandon gaming?

      1. M Gale

        Re: Mad greed

        IOW, what happens when ALL of them do it? Abandon gaming?

        In a heartbeat and without looking back once.

        Fortunately, ALL of them won't do it, because "ALL of them" includes the occasional indy dev house or publisher who don't want to shaft their customers. When the "AAA" games industry implodes and disappears up its own arse, these are the guys who will be left making a profit.

  11. Lord Zedd
    Thumb Down

    I won't buy one

    Simple because of this.

  12. Magic Hell
    FAIL

    30+ yr old "New Designed" ability?

    "we have only confirmed that we designed Xbox One to enable our customers to trade in and resell games at retail."

    Games have been "able" to be traded & sold in the retail after market for at least 2-3 decades now!?

    We dont need any "new design". >.>

  13. Matthew Anderson

    I'm happy enough with this, so long as MS are happy to replace for the cost of a disk and a small admin fee the replacement of easily broken disks which I am currently not allowed to download to disk as replacement, And a new Xbox when THEIR equipment fails,

    All is fair in love and, err, Xbox.,

    1. El Andy

      Chances are you won't need to replace disks. Once it's installed the disk won't be used again and I'd not be at all surprised if the option of just downloading the "bits" for any game activated under your account will be an option too, should you need it.

  14. Diogenes
    FAIL

    Keen gamers in my classes

    I teach IT to years 8,9 & 10, and many of the boys have multiple game consoles and PCs with specs that make my eyes water. They were really looking forward to the new XBox, until they read this. They spend so much on hardware, they buy most of their games 2nd hand. In one class there is a "club" of 6 who will all buy the game 2nd hand on the same day.

    Their hands are staying firmly in their pockets and all bar 2 /45 have decided to blow the money on new games.

  15. Idocrase

    I said it two years ago, when EA started issuing single use codes with it's new sports titles. The writing is now officially on the wall, high street retailers are dead.

    The companies might survive, if, they ditch all high street stores and staff immediately, and switch to a purely online model. Which is how PC game publishers survived - everyone wants a piece of the Steam pie, and Steam succeeded because retail stores could no longer sell pre-owned PC games because they all came with single use codes,

    Essentially, Microsoft just legitimized the loss of thousands of jobs worldwide, and the destruction of dozens of companies who WON'T make the jump in time.

    But don't blame Microsoft. EA started it, as did a few other publishers, M$ are just following the lead, I fully expect Sony will have the same plan in place.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      That's ok, once they come for the second hand software sales people, they'll come for the first hand ones soon enough. You pay for a service or a product. Neither are a guarantee of work or demand in a market.

      It's sad, but might be best to diversify, move on, or look for other funding mechanisms.

  16. Eguro

    I suspect a Reddit what'samacallit will pop up a few weeks/months before the Xbox launch in order to spread the word of the evil of the Xbone. Hopefully such a campaign will have great success, the Xbone will fail massively, and the industry will take a hint.

    As has been said above, if Sony play their cards right the console market is ripe for the plucking (minus the Nintendo fans of course, but I suspect there's a nice smooth division able to exist there).

    If Sony comes out with a similar plan, well then I'd say it's about time for someone to enter the fray with a new not shitty console. Just market it on mostly indie games and hopefully you'll be able to lure in a few major players.

  17. Connor

    Am I reading this right?

    So if I buy a game on the Xbox One and play it, it is locked to my account. Therefore if my girlfriend, living in the same house and playing on the same Xbox wants to play it, she can't? Or is it like now where it is the console and not the account that is registered?

    It sounds to me like games are going to be per account (like Steam) rather than per console?

    1. M Gale

      Re: Am I reading this right?

      You could always share one single account. That's if you can't bear to just dump the machine instead.

      You'd share all the same titles, as well as presumably, the same gamertag, the same achievements, the same scores, records, save files, contacts... and the advert bots will send you spam that assumes you're some kind of hermaphrodite.

      Could get interesting.

    2. El Andy

      Re: Am I reading this right?

      Nope. they've explicitly said that different accounts on the same xbox will be capable of playing a single copy of a game. The details of how that works exactly haven't been shared yet though, but they have stated in broad terms that "things will work pretty much as they do today".

  18. blapping

    Bit of plastic

    You're talking about the bit of plastic they're using as a data cache to save you having to download it? Let's face it, that's all it is. I think that's how they should be officially defined. Buy games exclusively online, then buy a physical copy of the data cache if you have a crap network. You're free to sell on that data cache if you want, but you'll still have to buy the executables online. Nobody moans about not being able to resell xbox arcade games.

    1. Grikath Silver badge

      Re: Bit of plastic

      Maybe. And technically correct.

      However, there are many ways you could get your investment back on (a) game(s) without trying to make your customers bend over and take it up the rear, which is what Microsoft is trying to do here.

  19. BrownishMonstr

    Surely, this means cheaper games?

    Since the game devs will get more profit from resale of the games, then the initial prices should be lower. Of course, I can't see this happening.

  20. demamazins

    The Future of Gaming?

    I'd rather have a digital download service much like what Apple offers with much of their upgradeable software. No more collections of discs, movies or video games that clutter your shelves. The introduction of "digital media only downloads" is nothing new, but eventually will take over, creating a completely new universe for the everyday user. Eventually movies and video games will no longer be available in a blockbuster store for rental because the media used to produce the movie or game costs more money. Hence cheaper availability of titles. Expect games to be cheaper unless the manufacturers decide to set the same price providing that the additional fees incurred benefit the user. If Microsoft incurs additional fees on top of what I am already paying for a year membership for XBOX Live, sic sic; lasts years rumblings for additional costs for online usage, then I'd rather not shell out the money for a new system. But with devices becoming smaller and smaller, change will eventually occur for the better. A system in one with additional bells and whistles minus a disc drive because the game is already installed and paid for. No more opening the disc drive to change games, wave your arms and tell your XBOX One, dashboard, Halo 25? Go!

    Look at Google, they have something called Google Glass, a pair of glasses for $1500 with really Sh*tty resolution specs, wait a couple of years and they will have the same resolution as your iPhone 5 that can record video at 1080p? The new XBOX isn't out yet, can't wait to see what it does and how it performs. Speculation by Playstation lovers doesn't help.

    1. Charles 9 Silver badge

      Re: The Future of Gaming?

      HINT: Microsoft's system is almost a carbon copy of Valve's Steam system, and the 360 ALREADY allows for downloadable games. Bet you pounds to pence the XB1 will ALSO have the ability to download the games off the Internet: no disc necessary.

  21. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    New Xbox could DOOM second-hand games market - should read "New Xbox doomed from the start due to alienating all but the wealthiest of gamers"

  22. mark l 2 Silver badge

    When Microsoft realise that the revenue from games has dropped because people will be buying less games if they have to pay a £35 fee to re-activate second hand games they will probably back track and drop the idea just like they have with the always on internet connection on the XBOX1 and the up and coming changes to allow the start menu back in Windows 8. My advise would be hold off 6 months from buying and see what Microsoft do.

  23. dervheid
    FAIL

    Dear Microsoft

    Do you want your shiny new console to be a success? Yes?

    Then you need to quash this rumour flat. Because if this is true, then your new console is pretty much dead in the water.

    Oh, and please don't counter it with the threat of "Well, we'll just kill of the '360 and force you to buy the One", because I suspect that 99.999% of gamers will retort to that with a resounding "Fuck You"

  24. P. Lee Silver badge

    Converting Value to Cash

    It seems that companies these days are bent on converting every bit of surplus value to cash. The problem is that it is surplus value that the customer is used to getting so they are reducing the value of their goods to the customer.

    That's a dangerous strategy.

    Another dangerous strategy is courting advertisers. It compromises the focus on the end-user experience.

    I can't understand why MS don't find their own strategy rather than trying to mimic Google and Apple. With so many Windows/xbox systems out there, use your console as a private cloud. Make a big play of not having spyware or adverts and allowing users to keep control of their stuff. Keep your email on your xbox and just offer the option for mirroring/backing up to the cloud. Sell adsl and cable cards for xbox so that they can host VPNs for access while out and about, or at least offer an option to terminate pppoe on it.

    They need to make a good product and do some good marketing, not find some dodgy way to make money from unexpected means.

  25. g e

    New Xbox could DOOM XBOX

    Fixed.

    SONY must be giggling like dizzy schoolgirls by now, as if the meh-launch of the One wasn't enough of a shot in the arm for them.

    Last I read (this week) on PS4 is that SONY are leaving it to the publishers to destroy their own games via secondhand taxes rather than mandate anything themselves in the hardware/firmware. So the same as PS3, really. Wise.

    The PS4 will have to have something seriously wrong with it or its feature set for me not to buy it and leave my XBOX experience behind with my dusty unused 360. In fact I know my last XBOX is a 360 already and this means that a cheap secondhand One is also no attraction as the games will be paywalled, even if the thing came with a hundred of them.

    Just remains to see what this access to streamed pre-PS4 games thing is like. If SONY get that right and allow a physical disk to be a 'key' to online streaming of PS1, 2, 3 titles they've already won before anyone's even seen the console, IMHO.

  26. fero

    All this talk of reselling games ignores another large area of the used game market - that of people who pass a game they have finished on to family and friends, for free.

    Most of my relatives have Wii's and they constantly swap games around. A few relatives also have Xbox360's and again, games are passed around. I suspect this market is massively overlooked!

    Introduce any charge at all, and this exchange is killed off. That won't mean more games are bought, more like less next-gen consoles are bought...

  27. bailey86

    I'm not sure if I have this right

    So - if I have a new Xbox1 - and have a couple of games for it - is this article saying that I can NOT take the game around to my friend's house and play it on his Xbox1?

    Seriously? If that's the case then providing Sony don't do something as dumb then I think the console war is over and the PS4 will be the new standard.

    1. bailey86

      Re: I'm not sure if I have this right

      To correct my own post...

      You can take the game there - but then have to sign in to your own account which stores scores etc. But it does stop you from lending the games around and swapping.

      This is still going to be hugely damaging to this new Xbox - you can't sell, lend or borrow games - without paying nigh on the full price again?!?

  28. Paul 87

    The biggest flaw I can see with the scheme from Microsoft's perspective, is with games tied so closely to accounts, and with a product aimed at security unaware teenagers and young adults, there's going to be a vast rise in account "theft" between mates. Without some form of lending library mechanism built in, this will end up costing Microsoft a lot more in man-hours dealing with the complaints, or if they don't, from lost sales from bad press

    Not to mention the jailbreakers are going to have a field day getting around the DRM restrictions and selling on their hacks.

  29. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    high street hackers..

    I think if this goes ahead we'll be back to the days where you can walk into a store and get your console modded.

    Microsoft is already declaring war on the retail market with this, and while all the game stores have been sucking up to the big names over the last decade in order to get larger stock of the hottest new games they'll be quickly switching their business model around if they have any sense.

    If modding of a console becomes primarily a method to play games you bought (albeit second hand) then the arguments used to crush it and get lawmakers on-side "it's only used for piracy!!!" will quickly lose all worth and the practice will become the norm again because let's face it, while there are a lot of us out there who do enjoy legitimate homebrew on our systems the current reason for modding is usually piracy.

    If a game store can show an entire shelf of 100% legitimate game titles for sale second hand, and offer a £30 service to modify your console to be able to play them (with the warning that you'll lose online functionality) then I expect it to happen.

    This could be a game changer and not in the way Microsoft planned.

    1. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge
      Big Brother

      Re: high street hackers..

      I think if this goes ahead we'll be back to the days where you can walk into a store and get your console modded.

      Unfortunately, rampant empire building by bureaucrats has it made it so that the whole security apparatus and SWAT overkill power of AUS/US/UK's Homeland Jackboot Security will come down on modders like the fist of Himmler in a short time.

  30. Infernoz Bronze badge
    Mushroom

    DRM is fraud and extortion, because it provide fake goods and is ironically anti-property

    I buy far less of any media now, because I became utter fed up with this IP delusion and even worse the fraud of DRM. I've seen the harmful impact of this absurdity of DRM on less informed people, in that it prevents use of media on other devices used and owned by a customer, and all because the provider is greedy, tyrannical, and ultimately dead stupid e.g. Apple, especially Steve Jobs.

    IP is really fundamentally broken, because anything which stops the purchaser (who should be the defacto owner of a sold good) from using the good how they see fit and to resell that good, is a fraud, extortion, and ironically anti-property rights and fair trade! A fairly traded good is sold with no strings attached.

    The fraud of DRM becomes quite blatantly in-your-face when the authentication mechanism because unavailable e.g. when internet authentication or migration servers become unavailable, or you have to dispose of the host device or Operating System!

    Saying there needs to be DRM to control IP disobedience is plain sophistry, or in plainer terms intellectual fraud, nonsense, BS; the 'solution' is worse than the problem!

  31. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Love the passion here but I'm not going to get my panties in a twist over something that's not officially confirmed by anyone not to mention that we really don't know all that much about the ps4 either do we? Did Sony even show a working prototype yet?

  32. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I'm really disgusted with the greed of Microsoft, so much so I'm considering flogging my 360.

    Whilst I rarely buy second hand games, last was SSX for a few days fun over Christmas, my youth was spent buying second hand, trading in old games for new, and swapping games with friends. The inability to loan a game is huge enough. It's certainly going to dent new game sales as much as it restricts second hand... People have budgets. Absolutely ridiculous time to go about this considering the financial climate.

    I've not heard anything from Sony yet... I know they patented a RFID system for disks. Did that make it into the PS4. If so they'll earn my ire also.

  33. The Vociferous Time Waster

    Luxury product

    Games are a luxury product. If you can't afford the product you have no human right to get it by installing from media you obtained without paying the original content creators.

    Why should a whole ecosystem exist to allow people to play games without paying the content creators a penny?

    1. Connor

      Re: Luxury product

      The same could be said of anything from houses, cars and jewellery right through to clothes. How can I be allowed to buy clothes from a charity shop for a nominal sum when the 10 year old 'tailor' in Bangladesh won't get his cut? The whole world is a system for purchasing products second hand and always has been, it is only in recent times that 'content creators' are claiming that their products are so wonderful and so unique that they can only be purchased once, ever.

      The whole concept is ludicrous and akin to a watchmaker claiming that once he has sold a watch, it can never be used by anyone other than the person he sold it to, moreover the buyer never actually owns the watch, only a non-transferable license to view the time on said watch, a license that can be revoked at any time, for any reason, at his discretion. When the buyer expires, so does the license and the watch must be returned to the watchmaker to enable him to 're-sell' it. But then, a nice watch is a luxury item.

      1. Anne-Lise Pasch
        Alert

        Re: Luxury product

        It was this logic that led to the first Goblin War in Harry Potter.

    2. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge
      Thumb Down

      A honorable gentleman says....

      If you can't afford the product you have no human right to get it by installing from media you obtained without paying the original content creators.

      This is an amazingly circuitous route of saying "rent is due because I say so".

    3. Anony-mouse
      FAIL

      Re: Luxury product

      How much is Microsoft (or the big game developers) paying you to be their little forum troll?

      I don't even game and the last game box I bought was a SNES many many years ago, but I find this development by Microsoft to be utterly revolting. I sincerely hope that the xbox1 falls flat on it's ass and people save their money for a platform with a more buyer-friendly attitude than Microsoft has shown lately. I am not a blanket Microsoft hater by any means, but their decisions for their products really suck since they came out with Windows 7.

    4. Danny 5
      WTF?

      Re: Luxury product

      Are you serious?

      So if you buy a second hand VW, you're more then happy to pay a fee to VW? and extend that to any fysical product. How's about your phone? you buy a second hand Iphone4, will you be willing to pay Apple a fee? If you buy a second hand book, would you be ok with the author being paid for that same book again?

      Come on, be realistic here, your logic means nobody ever has right of ownership, you merely rent your stuff.

      For me and a large part of my MS fanboy friends it's become pretty clear, that if Microsoft continues down this path, they can kiss over half their gamer support goodbye.

  34. PassingStrange

    All well and good, except...

    The problem is that companies, inevitably, will do there darndest to find ways to slither past the spirit of the law. Take MMOs (such as, e.g., World of Warcraft or Guild Wars 2) - where the various terms and conditions and EULAs routinely purport to deny the user the right to sell their game *account*. Sure, you can sell your copy of the game *software*, but the game software alone won't let someone else play the game. To do that you need to a registered account on the game servers (which is created, for example, using the unique key that came with a hard copy of the game, and which, once registered, won't be accepted again). If the game supplier refuses to recognise your right to transfer your *account*, you effectively can't transfer ownership of your copy of the game. I strongly suspect that this, too, is in breach of EU law - but until someone takes it to court and gets a decision in their favour (and some sort of order to enforce it) all the power remains in the hands of the big guys over the little ones. Don't be surprised if Microsoft do something very similar, therefore.

    1. mmeier

      Re: All well and good, except...

      I have a membership in a fitness club that allows me 24/7 use of the facilities. It requires a physical token for entry so only one person at a time could use it. Still it is not transferable to my neighbour since I enter an individual contract. Same for the WoW (and likely XBox) games so I guess the stuff is legal

      1. M Gale

        Re: All well and good, except...

        There's a set of dumbells knocking about the house.

        Funnily enough I don't have to pay to use them.

        1. mmeier

          Re: All well and good, except...

          Ah, the Penguin solution. It does about half what the real thing does in twice the time but it's free. And ugly. Thanks but I Keep with Windows and the cute aerobic teacher.

          1. M Gale

            Re: All well and good, except...

            Ah, the Penguin solution. It does about half what the real thing does in twice the time but it's free. And ugly. Thanks but I Keep with Windows and the cute aerobic teacher.

            So what you're basically saying is that I'm right, you want to charge multiple times for the same thing, and now you're going to throw insults.

            1. mmeier

              Re: All well and good, except...

              Nope. I wanted to point out that your solution is the typical stupid concept of "I restrict myself to hurt the big companies" bla bla coming from the Penguin sector. I go to a fitness studio because I am NOT willing to restrict myself to a pair of dumbbells! So they are NOT the solution. And Linux is similar "You do not need this!" is the PenguBoy mantra when stuff does not work / software does not run. Sorry but I decide what I need/want. If you can not deliver - I buy something else.

              Ironically not a console - never owned one.

              1. M Gale

                Re: All well and good, except...

                Nope. I wanted to point out that your solution is the typical stupid concept of "I restrict myself to hurt the big companies" bla bla coming from the Penguin sector. I go to a fitness studio because I am NOT willing to restrict myself to a pair of dumbbells! So they are NOT the solution. And Linux is similar "You do not need this!" is the PenguBoy mantra when stuff does not work / software does not run. Sorry but I decide what I need/want. If you can not deliver - I buy something else.

                Ironically not a console - never owned one.

                So not going along with the bullshit is "hurting myself"?

                These are toys.

                I have toys that do two hundred miles per hour at ridiculously low altitude, strimming the tops from daisies in a screaming blur of yellow, black and high-nitro exhaust smoke. How the fuck is not wanting to go along with DRM bullshit limiting me in any way whatsoever? The idiots want to push people like me away from the "AAA" games industry, that's fine by me.

                I decide what I need/want. If you cannot deliver, I buy something else. I want something I can then give away or resell at a later date. I want something that doesn't require bullshit spyware installing. I want a product that is mine, and if Valve cannot provide that, then Valve do not get my money. Weston UK might though. Their toys are the dog's bollocks.

                So asides throwing more insults at me, why should I be banned from giving someone my copy of a game?

      2. gc73

        Re: All well and good, except...

        No, you have a subscription to use the facilities. The physical token merely identifies the subscription is valid, you didn't BUY the token. I'm sure if you look in the contract you'll see the token is still the property of the gym company, required to be surrendered on demand.

  35. MrE

    Locking software to an account is nothing new...

    I can't sell on my Apple iPhone apps even though I no longer use it.

    I can't get money back for all my Android apps I now have.

    I can quite happily pass them from device to device as they're locked to my accounts.

    What's so different about locking console games to an account?

    1. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge
      Holmes

      Re: Locking software to an account is nothing new...

      Nothing probably but why do you accept being made an ass of?

    2. Dr Lecter

      Re: Locking software to an account is nothing new...

      Yes, and its wrong. The only thing I can say for some of the Android apps I have (Documents to go, specifically) have given me update after update with no extra charge. Many software houses would have given us Version 1, 2, 3 etc and charged for each and every update/version!

    3. gc73

      Re: Locking software to an account is nothing new...

      Indeed, having left the iOS camp for Android, I now have several (relatively) high value apps that are now useless, but Apple have no method of transferring to another account as a resale (or even gift to someone else).

      Similarly, purchases through the iOS VPP are locked to an Apple ID, which I'm sure many businesses will love once they try to migrate licenses among staff and find they have to repurchase.

      Both seem against EU law. Anyone willing to take them on?

  36. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    A move caused by rip-off game retailers

    The only reason this is happening is because for decades now, companies like Game and others have been taking a massive slice of publishing profits by reselling games without paying any royalties to the developers.

    I buy a game for £40 new release.

    I play it and complete it.

    I trade it in to Game and get £10 for it (If I am very lucky)

    Game promptly resells it for £30 second hand.

    Game makes £20 profit.

    Developer, publishing house, etc, receive nothing, but lose the sale of a full price first-hand game.

    Yes there is the old argument that "I wouldn't have bought it first-hand anyway" but it's not as strong an argument in this case, because chances are we would have bought the game at some point, even if it was a year later when it was on sale.

    If there had been a reasonable system implemented over a decade ago where a percentage of profit from resales went to the publishers, this would never have come about. As it was, those companies were basically riding on those sales and raking in what they could. It's now lead to this.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: A move caused by rip-off game retailers

      The customers are perfectly happy with this tho.

      The game retailers are also running a business and obviously need a business model that works for them, they have one.

      The original developer sold a copy of the game, wanting a second slice of the pie is greed.

      I think it tells you a lot about modern games if people are so willing to trade them in for £10 anyway, ie they don't think they actually have anywhere near the RRP price, and simply aren't worth keeping.

      My very favourite games I haven't traded in, I still play them time and time again to this day, the shovelware that gets put out as AAA titles these days does because it's all production values and no substance.

      The model works on phones where most software is dirt cheap, so no big loss if you just throw it away (it's less than the hit most people take trading a game in the first place) This model is the work of Satan when you're talking about £60 games.

      If all modern games cost £2-£5 it could work. The likelihood of all new games costing £2-£5 at release is absolute zero.

      Practices like this will end up causing an industry crash because people have a limited budget and a limited tolerance for things like this and we're slowly seeing people wise up to it. It's not just going to cost millions of retail jobs in the short term but many thousands of developer jobs in the medium.

    2. Rattus Rattus

      Re: A move caused by rip-off game retailers

      What a load of twaddle. You buy a car for $15,000. Years later you trade it in at a dealer for $3,000 off another purchase. Dealer cleans up the car and sells it on for $5,000. How is that any different? Wanting to be paid again and again every time the car, sorry, game, changes hands is nothing more than simple greed. The publisher has already had their share of the profit. "Content" industries, including the game industry, need to stop believing they are special snowflakes that don't fall under the same rules as every other kind of purchase in the world.

      1. El Andy

        Re: A move caused by rip-off game retailers

        A second hand car has wear-and-tear, it degrades over time and that accounts for it's devaluation. A video game is basically identical regardless of whether or not it's brand new of been resold 15 times.

        1. M Gale

          Re: A move caused by rip-off game retailers

          A second hand car has wear-and-tear, it degrades over time and that accounts for it's devaluation. A video game is basically identical regardless of whether or not it's brand new of been resold 15 times.

          So?

          What you're saying is that something lasts a long time, so it should have a tax on every time it changes hands.

          No.

        2. Rattus Rattus

          Re: A move caused by rip-off game retailers

          @El Andy

          A game also has wear and tear. The disc gets scratched, scratches get polished out, after a few cycles of this you might start having problems reading it. The box gets scuffed and scratched. The manual gets ragged - oh wait, publishers can't be bothered including a manual any more. The map gets lost or damaged - oh yeah, publishers don't give us paper maps any more either. Though despite giving us less in the box they want to be paid more, that makes sense. Oh wait, no, it's actually just greed.

          Besides which, technology gets outdated. That second hand game might be running on last year's engine and not look as good as the newer ones. Or that was the game everyone was talking about six months ago, not that you have finally got to play it all that discussion and discovery has passed by and everyone's talking about the newest game instead, meaning you are losing out on the social attributes of playing the game. Try playing Portal for the first time and telling people online "Hey, the cake is a lie!" You are not going to get the same camaraderie over it that you would have years ago. As carriers of much of today's popular culture, getting games late because you bought second hand means you have genuinely missed out on some of the value of the new game.

        3. gc73
          Stop

          Re: A move caused by rip-off game retailers

          Since publishers are willing to re-release games on budget or "platinum" labels, that blows your argument they don't devalue out the water.

    3. MachDiamond Silver badge

      Re: A move caused by rip-off game retailers

      Game is taking the risk that they may not be able to resell the game they purchased from you in a reasonable period of time. They also have to pay from premises, payroll, tax, utilities, insurance and all of the other overhead common with every other retailer. You do not have to sell your old game back to them. You can list it online or in the papers and sell it yourself for as much as you can get. Whether that is worth the extra coin you will bring in or not ..... Somebody buying episode 1 of a game series second hand may find that they want episode 2 as soon as it comes out and will purchase it new. The game publisher now has a new customer. Kids will now badger their parents to get them the latest installment for their next birthday, christmas, etc.

      I was perfectly happy as a kid with Lego and Mechano. I wish I still had them. Between me and my mate, we could build a full size replica of the Tower of London! Didn't need mains power or an internet connection either.

  37. AidanCheddar
    Boffin

    Tackling two topics

    First is the PC topic: ever heard of the Humble Bumble or GOG? DRM-free games up for download at anytime you please. PCs are less effected by these problems. It's usally the publishers that add-in the DRM, not the hardware venders. From an operating sytem persective, the Metro-side of Windows 8 might as well count as DRM.

    Second is console topic: this will most likely DOOM Xbox's second-hand games market. Since the they'll likely loose their value. I'm not sure how PS3 will hand this situation, and havn't heard concern from Wii U.

  38. regprentice
    FAIL

    In some senses you can compare the second hand games market to fractional reserve banking.

    Everyone in the chain resells the game after they have had their 20hours of use... user 1 sells at 90% of value, then user 2 at 80% of value and so on... As others have pointed out this cycle allows a reasonable proportion of new titles to be sold at the £40 bracket as users trade in 2 fairly new titles in exchange for a 'newest' one.

    A bit ike a bank taking in 100K of deposits and using that to lend you 100k , then the next person 90k and then the next 80K and so on as would be the case with a 10% reserve requirement. Ultimately this props up a house price bubble as banks lend more than they have, and NEED to keep lending to keep the cycle moving... much like the new game price bubble. (I know high end console games have always been £40ish since the mid 80's... so they havent risen to subsequently fall like a true bubble... but surely games are due the kind of 'price realignment' suffered by CD's DVD's, ebooks etc)

    Unfortunately software houses are now trying to chase these incremental price points and dropping the software price almost daily. Look at the retail cost of the new tomb raider game... literally halved in 4 weeks from the date of release and its been on a slippery slope since. What confidence does the initial buyer have that they are paying a 'fair' price. What confidence does a softwarehouse have that they can recoup their investment or be rewarded for their hard work in producing a decent and fairly ambitious game?

    If you want a window into the prices Sony and M$ think they can charge have a look at the PS store. £60 for a new (download) title, when i bought a second hand physical copy of far cry3 for £12 they were still selling far cry 3 download for £60.

    Interesting to see what comes of the steam console.

  39. Haku
    Flame

    £35 for an activation fee of a SECOND HAND GAME?!

    And you can only sell your old games for 10% of what they cost you?

    Fuck off Microsoft.

  40. Rhiakath Flanders
    FAIL

    Reselling

    Well. I DO get most of my games from second hand shops. They are way cheaper.

    Why? Because if I buy a freaking cell phone and within 10 days i do not like it, i can turn it back ( assuming it's in mint condition, of course ). If I buy a fridge and notice it's not suitable for me, i can turn it back ( again, in the first 10 days, and in mint condition ). If i buy a game, and notice it just suck too much, i'm stuck. I just spent 50 euros on something i hate.

    And, also, when i finish some game, and i know i won't be replaying it, I have two choices:

    1 - Let it sit around, gathering dust.

    2 - Sell it to that same shop.

    I usually go for the second. I get some of my money back ( even if it's just 1 euro ), and someone else can experience the game for a cheap price.

    Why does this not hurt the developer? There's still only ONE copy of the game involved. I can no longer play it, and another player now gets it. I didn't duplicate anything. And that player had to wait for me to finish it.

    If the player really wanted the game, he would have bought it, not waited until someone finished it and sold it.

    If I buy a cell phone, and later buy a better one, would it be illegal for me to sell my old cell phone? Of course not!

    This way, microsoft is saying two things:

    1 - "we want to get paid more than once for the same game".

    2 - "rhiakath, you may forget buying the new xbox. Keep your current one, which we were very happy to sell you, and in the future, buy a ps4".

  41. John Savard Silver badge

    Likely Outcome?

    I suppose it all depends on whether the customer has a choice. If they can get new video games running on a platform with up-to-date technology from a competitor that doesn't do this, then, except for a few to whom this issue doesn't matter, and who prefer the Xbox, Microsoft's new console will find few takers.

    But if Nintendo and Sony decide to do the same thing, the consumer is likely to just accept the change as inevitable.

  42. NoneSuch
    Holmes

    Hmmmmm... So M$ feels this strategy will increase their profits? This must be the same marketing team that brought us the Zune, Windows 8, Surface-RT and other memorable product.

    Keep your new XBOX.

    Sherlock icon, because it's elementary.

  43. rcp27

    Wait till the lawyers have had their say

    I made a similar comment when the same topic was discussed about the PS3. European courts have made some very robust defenses of the first sale doctrine. The case of textbook importers in the US have also confirmed the first sale doctrine there. If this policy is implemented, I expect some courtroom action over either of first sale or antitrust regulations, and past form on these issues does not bode well for M$.

  44. CaptainPedantic
    FAIL

    This is utter crap; software development is nothing like the traditional manufacturing industry.

    Most of the cost of a car is the cost of the raw materials, building it, and shipping it. Whereas in software, you sink umpteen million into R&D and the manufacturing costs are negligible.

    The people who actually make the games need paid, or they won't be able to make any more games. When you buy second hand, the people who make the games get nothing.

    1. Andrew Taylor 1
      FAIL

      Even bigger fail

      Have you seen how much R&D goes into a new car, no, thought not.

  45. fred_flinstone

    Expecting too much?

    I think there is a key point that is being missed here - games players (indeed all software users) now expect updates to the software as standard. Gone are the days when you literally bought a shrink-wrapped piece of software and used it bugs and all.

    The problem being that all these updates cost money - lots of money, and whle the games industry does make a lot of money, in truth there are probably 10 (or more) mediocre selling titles for each smash hit, and the software publishers rely on the profits from the hits to cover the losses on the less successful products.

    So, on the one hand you have the games consumer who not unreasonably sees their shrink wrapped game as an outright purchase in just the same way as a kettle, TV etc. is seen, while at the same time expecting the games provider to supply the sort of after sales support that realistically goes far above and beyond the guarantee provisions on your average kettle (when was the last time you bought a kettle and after a few weeks/months were able to take it back for new features to be added for 'free'?)

    So now (unsurprisingly) the games industry is looking for ways to increase revenue to cover the cost of these additional services, while keeping the initial purchase price 'affordable'. Personally, I think for the games industry to go down this road they need to stop selling skrink-wrapped games and move to downloads. If you remove the physical aspect then you get rid of the quite reasonable consumer perception that they have bought something physical. Obviously there are problems with this route (download speed for one) but it does not appear to have hurt iOS and Android sales, and most PC/Mac software has been sold in this manner for quite some time now.

    1. M Gale

      Re: Expecting too much?

      I think there is a key point that is being missed here - games players (indeed all software users) now expect updates to the software as standard. Gone are the days when you literally bought a shrink-wrapped piece of software and used it bugs and all.

      When was that ever the case except with games consoles that had no patching mechanism?

  46. Dr Lecter

    Corporate Americas greed

    This is just one part of a bigger story. Corporate America and the likes of the RIAA do not like anything that they think will not give them more and more money. This is just the first step, the next way they will try to do this is with music. They will want everything to go digital with no option but DRM for every purchase and that also mean for every device. On a separate note, I remember as a kid friends who would sell two or three of their old games to purchase a new title and so the fat cats may just find their new releases don't get quite the response they were hoping for.

  47. MachDiamond Silver badge

    Trading up and residual value

    I sell my old computer to raise some money to buy a new one. I sell my old camera to help pay for a newer model. I sell my old car when I buy a new(er) one. Why not sell my old video games? Trading up is as old as civilization itself. What happens to resale-ability of a console if it can't be package with a heap of games? An old console with no games is next to worthless. Buying last year's model with a handsome selection of games ready to play is usually an awesome deal for the buyer. Manufacturers are not going to make larger profits if they cut out the second hand market. On the contrary, they will kill their primary market quickly.

    If you couldn't resell your car when you wanted to get a new model, you might find it difficult to afford the new car. Financing options such as leasing would go away since the residual value at the end of the lease is part of the equation. Without that value, there is not leasing. A similar situation exists for car hire companies. They expect to sell on their fleet within a year or two before repairs become an issue. If they can't turn over their stock for more than scrap price, the business model won't work and hiring a car will be come a thing of the past.

    There are always unintended consequences with trying to change established ways of doing things. If the locked-down, permanent rental method of "selling" products gets put in place, there will be all sorts of immoral practices that companies can invoke. Not illegal, immoral. How about bringing out a new console with a new authentication system and closing the old system to force users to upgrade. For gaming I am not too bothered. There may be withdrawal symptoms, but you'll live. Setting a precedent scares me much more. My cell phone is a few years old, but works just fine for me. What happens if I'm forced to buy a new one every two years? Start buying stock in recycle and landfill companies. They'll be the only profitable industry.

  48. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    RANT RANT RANT

    A) Microsoft have neither confirmed nor denied any of this

    b) Sony have neither confirmed nor denied any of this

    Nothing to see here.

  49. goats in pajamas

    Already happening.

    I have some PC games that no 2nd hand shop will touch because they have a 'one time only registration' along with 'permanent Internet connection required'.

    It's quite outrageous that these sorts of systems are even allowed in the market place as they drive a coach and horses through previously understood concepts of seller and buyer and what happens to the property as a result.

    I have another few games that I discovered trawling torrent sites, downloaded and tried and went out and bought the legit' discs for, only to find that 6 months later I can't play it without cracking it anymore because I've "exceeded the maximum number of permitted installs" (I went through a period of trying various different Linux distros, looking for the best implemenation of WINE (LinuxMint if you're interested), so the game was reinstalled a fair few times over a period of a few weeks).

    And they wonder why people pirate software.

  50. Sumoking

    The exhaustion of rights/Thank you microsoft

    $$$$$

    I better get on with costing up a class action for this bad boy, re sellers, amazon, the general public vs microsoft (and possibly sony)

    This is my next 15 years and retirement sorted!

  51. Thorfkin

    I think it more likely that the Xbox One will simply fail to catch on as well as its predecessors. Or at least I hope. If you want to make Microsoft understand how unacceptable you find their mistreatment of the used-game market, don't buy their console. Words mean nothing to a large company like that. If you want them to listen, you have to vote with your wallet.

  52. MNDaveW

    No u-Squish Hardware for Me or Mine

    There come points where one decides "That is a straw too many!" cost of ownership is an important criteria when considering gaming equipment (or any other equipment). "Can't replace a worn-out DVD drive? Can't trade games?" Screw you, Microsoft. Your hardware will never darken my threshold again. Guests can leave their equipment on the porch.

  53. The Jase

    Selling licences not games

    If its licences and not games being sold, will we get to see old school coin-op arcades coming back? The games at the local shops?

  54. thecapsaicinkid

    I find all the frothing at the mouth over this particular issue equal part amusing/bewildering for several reasons.

    1. Everyone has made their mind up that game developers are all massive, greedy corporations creaming in millions in profits year after year. I'm pretty sure last time I checked most of the money is made by the largest few and everyone else is struggling to break even. How many went under last year exactly?

    2. To claim the distribution of luxury items such as videogames is immoral is hilarious. It implies that people are completely powerless to NOT buy a particular product if they don't agree with how it is priced. It doesn't matter how ridiculous the analogy you can conjure up (cars which cannot be re-sold, implode after 100 miles, must be serviced at Ford etc. etc.) You can STILL always vote with your wallet no matter what and guess what happens to products which don't sell??

    This whole issue boils down to MS making the decision that developers should see more of the money floating around in the industry. If you don't think they should then that's fine, vote with your wallet (I say this knowing full well gamers are completely incapable of doing this, completely spineless most of them imo)

    1. Hakster
      Pint

      Actually, the money would go to the publisher, not the developer. There's a big difference. The publishers are the profiteers, the development studios are employees paid to create a product. If someone put up a website that allowed me to donate a few extra quid to the "Developer Beer Fund", I'd be all over that (in a way, it's what Kickstarter allows). Lining the pockets of companies who produce nothing at all annoys me. Watching them insist on being paid twice for a product they did not even create bothers me more.

  55. Unanimous Applause

    Who cares? not me

    Don't trade in your games. Don't loan your games to your friends. This is a good thing for everybody. Now that punk from up the street won't steal your games because they will be worthless to him/her. If MS is going to make more money I would hope the games will be cheaper and possibly bring down the price of the console since most of the money they make is with game sales to begin with.

    On top of all this, MS has not finalized anything yet, this is all just speculation and rumors.

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