• 65 results
  • 1
  • 2
#1 Posted by ShadowSkill11 (1783 posts) -

Background: In recent years to combat the huge loss in profits to retailers such as Gamestop console game companies have began using online passes to regain some of their lost profits. Other large companies such as Microsoft have been rumored to be using anti-used game technology in their next generation consoles.

Many of the gaming press and some gamers know that the money from used games sales don't go to the men and women who created the games. They go to the retailers(Gamestop, etc). As we all know gamers can be a fickle bunch. The younger gamers out there see online passes and new game only sales as a obstacle to enjoying their favorite hobby. All they care about are getting the great games they are used to as much as possible. What they don't understand/care about is the long game. What happens when the game companies stop making money. The quality and quantity of games will start to dry up. AAA titles will get fewer and fewer and a new rise of minigames and just plain bad games will become the new norm. Being a gamer is an expensive hobby for young people and always has been.

The only thing that is happening is that consoles are catching up to the PC once again even if it is destined to be the old Mario Kart-like rubber band race again. This time the next gen consoles are starting to use the retail models of PC's. Online services such as Steam, DirectToDrive, Origin, etc. These services don't allow the re-sale of games by the consumer. What is different from the current console market is that these online retailers frequently have sales that are known to discount the prices of games up to 90% after just a few months on the market. Does waiting a few months for 50% off a game equate with getting $5 off a used disc in a Gamestop a week later? Who's to say but in my opinion the consoles are finally starting to move forward after a 10 year stagnation period.

#2 Posted by WickedCobra03 (2102 posts) -

I hate the fact that I am not able to get used games on PC anymore for $5-15 bucks like 3-10 years after that said game came out, but on the other hand, if I can get them from steam for $5-10 on GoG.com or some similar site, that is fine with me. I hardly buy games as they are released, instead, I will still buy new, but when the game comes down to a reasonable price.

And as for console games going in the direction of everyone hopping onto that "online-pass" train... I will typically become pretty turned off by the game as a whole, or not even register the code since it is more work that what I feel like going through to get the code out of the case, input it just to try multiplayer. I am not one to trade in games really, so basically these companies are basically charging for multiplayer...and on top of that, those codes expire. I bought need for speed (reboot) new for the Playstation 3 on Black Friday of 2010 for $30 and didn't end up playing it for 6-9 months later... and I heard that there were reports of people not being able to register codes if they had a game for more than a year, but never registered right away.

#3 Posted by WickedFather (1730 posts) -

Just play on your ps2 or wii until the generation after that when things go back to normal.  Or get a PC with a graphincs card.  I've heard it's got better graphincs than the xbox on the pc.  I don't know if it has platform games where the man jumps.

#4 Posted by Yanngc33 (4496 posts) -

@ShadowSkill11: I don't think online passes are evil. Game companies have got to make money somehow. Those who complain about online passes can only blame themselves for not buying the game new and supporting the men and women who made the game. And claiming that you're saving money by selling and buying your games used is bogus. Gamestop rapes you, taking back weak old games for 20$ when they were bought for 70 (tax included)and then certain used games (Black Ops) are sold a year later for 40$. My tip is to save up money, buy a new game and keep it.

#5 Posted by Branthog (7342 posts) -

I don't see how buying used games makes anyone a "fickle bunch". Are you "fickle" or showing a disregard for content creators (and, more likely, the middle-men between you and the actual content creators) when you buy a used book, album, television, car, clothing, appliance, or house?

You have the right to do what you wish with a product you have purchased and all these morons are doing is making a desperate attempt to prevent the decay of their aging business models in the same way that the music and movie industries have. That is, not competing on merit, but by trying to weasel their dying methodologies into carrying their stock prices for just one more precious quarter. Some do it through legislation of ridiculous copyright laws which are nothing but veiled attempts to thwart competition. Others do it by making it so that if there are three gamers who live in your house, all three have to buy another copy of the game or pay extra cash. Sort of like how when you buy a book, it expires after one reading and you can't loan your book to another person until they've paid another $10. Oh, wait . . .

The difference that people seem to fail to keep in mind is that when you purchase a game through online services, you are doing so with the understanding that it comes with certain limitations. Like being tied to your account and not being possible to package for resale in any used market. The same way you come to understand this when you buy a title on your Kindle. When you buy a physical item, however, you expect that item to belong to you. It is yours to keep. Or to give away. Or to resell. Except, they have recently circumvented that ability. It would be like fitting a car with some sort of ignition system that only starts when it can identify the driver as the original owner. Buy a used car and you can't start it. Buy a used car and you are "depriving" those poor car designers and manufacturers and distributors and salesmen. Why, you're starving them and their precious families! You cretin! How dare you buy a used car, you selfish fuck!

Which brings us to a final point. They need to make up their fucking minds on what they're selling you. Are you selling me a license to play a game? In that case, fine, I undertand that it is limited to me. I also understand that I may not be able to resell a license. But, if you're only selling me a license (which is why you claim I can't do what I want with a game and why I may not be able to sell it or always have access to it), then I expect you to provide me with a replacement copy of that game's media when I have lost or damaged it. After all, you say that I am paying for a LICENSE and not a physical ITEM. So if I still hav a license for it, why should I have to pay all over again? Right - because they want to tell you you're paying for a license when it's convenient and they want to tell you you're paying for a physical good when *that's* convenient . . . like when it's time to replace cassettes with CDs.

They also need to reduce the prices. If a game is only good for one person (siblings? spouse? sorry, but fuck them!), a game can not be resold, and I am paying only for a license, and there are no distribution costs but trivial bandwidth . . . then don't charge me the same traditional $60. A business model that takes away from the consumer is a shitty one and a poor way to compete. You'll get your lunch eaten, just like the other industries have been. A business model that serves your customers? Yeah, that'll work. It works for Valve. It works for GoG. It works for a lot of people.

#6 Posted by Jimbo (9776 posts) -

They aren't 'their' lost profits though. They knew and accepted the rules of the market they were releasing into every step of the way - they knew when they started developing the game and they knew when they released the game. They own the copy - as soon as they sell it once, they give up all ownership of the experience that single copy provides. Their profits are what they make on the first sale of every copy, not on repeat sales. The fact that repeat sales are a legally protected option that purchasers are entitled to use is already accounted for in the first sale price to begin with (ie. if you can't sell a game on, it inherently has less initial value).

Nobody buying used games should feel bad about it at all, because they aren't doing anything wrong.

#7 Posted by LordXavierBritish (6320 posts) -

Buying used is legalized piracy.

Fact.

#8 Posted by jetsetwillie (857 posts) -

@Branthog said:

I don't see how buying used games makes anyone a "fickle bunch". Are you "fickle" or showing a disregard for content creators (and, more likely, the middle-men between you and the actual content creators) when you buy a used book, album, television, car, clothing, appliance, or house?

You have the right to do what you wish with a product you have purchased and all these morons are doing is making a desperate attempt to prevent the decay of their aging business models in the same way that the music and movie industries have. That is, not competing on merit, but by trying to weasel their dying methodologies into carrying their stock prices for just one more precious quarter. Some do it through legislation of ridiculous copyright laws which are nothing but veiled attempts to thwart competition. Others do it by making it so that if there are three gamers who live in your house, all three have to buy another copy of the game or pay extra cash. Sort of like how when you buy a book, it expires after one reading and you can't loan your book to another person until they've paid another $10. Oh, wait . . .

The difference that people seem to fail to keep in mind is that when you purchase a game through online services, you are doing so with the understanding that it comes with certain limitations. Like being tied to your account and not being possible to package for resale in any used market. The same way you come to understand this when you buy a title on your Kindle. When you buy a physical item, however, you expect that item to belong to you. It is yours to keep. Or to give away. Or to resell. Except, they have recently circumvented that ability. It would be like fitting a car with some sort of ignition system that only starts when it can identify the driver as the original owner. Buy a used car and you can't start it. Buy a used car and you are "depriving" those poor car designers and manufacturers and distributors and salesmen. Why, you're starving them and their precious families! You cretin! How dare you buy a used car, you selfish fuck!

Which brings us to a final point. They need to make up their fucking minds on what they're selling you. Are you selling me a license to play a game? In that case, fine, I undertand that it is limited to me. I also understand that I may not be able to resell a license. But, if you're only selling me a license (which is why you claim I can't do what I want with a game and why I may not be able to sell it or always have access to it), then I expect you to provide me with a replacement copy of that game's media when I have lost or damaged it. After all, you say that I am paying for a LICENSE and not a physical ITEM. So if I still hav a license for it, why should I have to pay all over again? Right - because they want to tell you you're paying for a license when it's convenient and they want to tell you you're paying for a physical good when *that's* convenient . . . like when it's time to replace cassettes with CDs.

They also need to reduce the prices. If a game is only good for one person (siblings? spouse? sorry, but fuck them!), a game can not be resold, and I am paying only for a license, and there are no distribution costs but trivial bandwidth . . . then don't charge me the same traditional $60. A business model that takes away from the consumer is a shitty one and a poor way to compete. You'll get your lunch eaten, just like the other industries have been. A business model that serves your customers? Yeah, that'll work. It works for Valve. It works for GoG. It works for a lot of people.

but a book does not come with an online service that is an on going cost to the publisher.

which is what these online passes grant you access too.

you still get to play the SP game (the story) if you buy used. publishers just want you to pay to use their online service. which is fair enough imo.

#9 Posted by Jimbo (9776 posts) -

@jetsetwillie: On the other hand, one person can use that online service before the sale and one person can use it after the sale, so they aren't having to provide that ongoing service to any more people than they were anyway. They're always limited to exactly however many new copies were sold.

I think it's ok for them to limit multiplayer access to the first purchaser only in this manner, as long as it's made clear on the packaging that multiplayer access is in fact not an inherent and transferable part of the product you are buying, but is actually a seperate service.

#10 Posted by Branthog (7342 posts) -

@Yanngc33 said:

@ShadowSkill11: I don't think online passes are evil. Game companies have got to make money somehow. Those who complain about online passes can only blame themselves for not buying the game new and supporting the men and women who made the game. And claiming that you're saving money by selling and buying your games used is bogus. Gamestop rapes you, taking back weak old games for 20$ when they were bought for 70 (tax included)and then certain used games (Black Ops) are sold a year later for 40$. My tip is to save up money, buy a new game and keep it.

The amount of money involve is irrelevant. There's no math involved in whether or not you possess first sale rights. We either have them or we don't. And it's not your job to be worried about putting food on the table of a publisher's employees (publishers, becoming decreasingly relevant in a day with so many direct distribution methods available). The gaming industry is bordering on the same idiocy that we saw the RIAA conducting. Persecuting their customers.

I buy almost exclusively new games, but nobody else should have to do that, just because I do. And am I a bad person if I wait for a game to be half price? Am I a bad person if I wait until it's five bucks on Steam? Am I a bad person if I wait to purchase a game until after the purchase no longer really benefits their NPD rankings?

Let's start applying this judgement and logic to all other products. Did you contract an architect and builder to build you a brand new house? Do you buy only brand new cars?

Yeah, I'm sympathetic to their predicament. It's hard when the world is moving faster than you are and your company is built on a model that can't keep up. Hell, that killed Kodak. Their model was built on selling and developing film. Digital cameras took over and their business dried up. I guess you and I are terrible people, if we ever bought or used digital cameras, too. We killed a company and screwed over all their employees. All because we selfishly stopped using film.

Of course, this *will* eventually become moot when consoles go digital some day. It *will* essentially just be Steam (or something similar) on a console and our expectations will be set. All this DLC and pass bullshit will, hopefully, go away. At the moment, it's just a sad attempt by a flailing industry trying to feel its way around to revenue.

And, yeah, season passes *are* evil. You don't see a problem with buying a copy of a game and having to pay more for it because there are more people in your household? After you buy a brand new movie at full price and take it home, you don't have to then dish out another $30, because you have three family members that are going to sit down and watch it with you. They are *evil* because they hamper *paying customers*. Paying customers who are paying full price for your brand new games. These are the people you are supposed to *value*.

#11 Posted by Commisar123 (1790 posts) -

It's all about implementation. Online passes are fine, but the pricing and what they choose to hide behind the DRM wall is important. Personally I really like the way Mass Effect 2 handled it by giving you an awesome extra character who was not essential to the story, but was a lot of fun and worth the extra money to buy it new.

#12 Posted by Branthog (7342 posts) -

@jetsetwillie said:

@Branthog said:

I don't see how buying used games makes anyone a "fickle bunch". Are you "fickle" or showing a disregard for content creators (and, more likely, the middle-men between you and the actual content creators) when you buy a used book, album, television, car, clothing, appliance, or house?

You have the right to do what you wish with a product you have purchased and all these morons are doing is making a desperate attempt to prevent the decay of their aging business models in the same way that the music and movie industries have. That is, not competing on merit, but by trying to weasel their dying methodologies into carrying their stock prices for just one more precious quarter. Some do it through legislation of ridiculous copyright laws which are nothing but veiled attempts to thwart competition. Others do it by making it so that if there are three gamers who live in your house, all three have to buy another copy of the game or pay extra cash. Sort of like how when you buy a book, it expires after one reading and you can't loan your book to another person until they've paid another $10. Oh, wait . . .

The difference that people seem to fail to keep in mind is that when you purchase a game through online services, you are doing so with the understanding that it comes with certain limitations. Like being tied to your account and not being possible to package for resale in any used market. The same way you come to understand this when you buy a title on your Kindle. When you buy a physical item, however, you expect that item to belong to you. It is yours to keep. Or to give away. Or to resell. Except, they have recently circumvented that ability. It would be like fitting a car with some sort of ignition system that only starts when it can identify the driver as the original owner. Buy a used car and you can't start it. Buy a used car and you are "depriving" those poor car designers and manufacturers and distributors and salesmen. Why, you're starving them and their precious families! You cretin! How dare you buy a used car, you selfish fuck!

Which brings us to a final point. They need to make up their fucking minds on what they're selling you. Are you selling me a license to play a game? In that case, fine, I undertand that it is limited to me. I also understand that I may not be able to resell a license. But, if you're only selling me a license (which is why you claim I can't do what I want with a game and why I may not be able to sell it or always have access to it), then I expect you to provide me with a replacement copy of that game's media when I have lost or damaged it. After all, you say that I am paying for a LICENSE and not a physical ITEM. So if I still hav a license for it, why should I have to pay all over again? Right - because they want to tell you you're paying for a license when it's convenient and they want to tell you you're paying for a physical good when *that's* convenient . . . like when it's time to replace cassettes with CDs.

They also need to reduce the prices. If a game is only good for one person (siblings? spouse? sorry, but fuck them!), a game can not be resold, and I am paying only for a license, and there are no distribution costs but trivial bandwidth . . . then don't charge me the same traditional $60. A business model that takes away from the consumer is a shitty one and a poor way to compete. You'll get your lunch eaten, just like the other industries have been. A business model that serves your customers? Yeah, that'll work. It works for Valve. It works for GoG. It works for a lot of people.

but a book does not come with an online service that is an on going cost to the publisher.

which is what these online passes grant you access too.

you still get to play the SP game (the story) if you buy used. publishers just want you to pay to use their online service. which is fair enough imo.

I thought we were primarily talking about console games? What service is a publisher or developer providing when the network is setup for the games (except for few exceptions) to be hosted on the player's console?

Additionally, someone already paid full price for the game at one point, which means the fee for whatever supposed service has already been paid, also. And since there is only ever that one copy of the game and only ever one instance of it being played, then whether I buy it and play it for two years or I buy it and sometimes I play it and sometimes my significant other plays it, or I buy it and play it and then I sell it to someone who plays it and I no longer play it . . . the same quantity of that game is being played and that "quantity" has already been accounted for in the fee associated with the initial full price service.

We're forced to conclude, then, that it has absolutely nothing to do with their expenses required to maintain a multiplayer game and is all about compensating for the overall business model (which, among other things, requires not only making a profit, but making a bigger profit each quarter than the one before, which can not be sustained indefinitely).

#13 Posted by Jimbo (9776 posts) -

@LordXavierBritish said:

Buying used is legalized piracy.

Fact.

Unless you're being sarcastic, no it isn't.

Piracy = unlimited copies from one new copy. No cap on the number of copies available.

Used sales = one copy for every one new copy sold. Number of used copies potentially available in the market is strictly capped at total new sales.

For there to be a million used copies floating around there must have been at least a million new sales which the publisher made money on at some point. You can have a million pirated copies out there from one (or I guess even zero) sales. They are fundamentally different and piracy has far more potential to cause harm than used sales, for the reasons stated. That's why one is illegal and the other is a legally protected right for the consumer.

#14 Posted by Demoskinos (14589 posts) -

@Branthog said:

I don't see how buying used games makes anyone a "fickle bunch". Are you "fickle" or showing a disregard for content creators (and, more likely, the middle-men between you and the actual content creators) when you buy a used book, album, television, car, clothing, appliance, or house?

You have the right to do what you wish with a product you have purchased and all these morons are doing is making a desperate attempt to prevent the decay of their aging business models in the same way that the music and movie industries have. That is, not competing on merit, but by trying to weasel their dying methodologies into carrying their stock prices for just one more precious quarter. Some do it through legislation of ridiculous copyright laws which are nothing but veiled attempts to thwart competition. Others do it by making it so that if there are three gamers who live in your house, all three have to buy another copy of the game or pay extra cash. Sort of like how when you buy a book, it expires after one reading and you can't loan your book to another person until they've paid another $10. Oh, wait . . .

The difference that people seem to fail to keep in mind is that when you purchase a game through online services, you are doing so with the understanding that it comes with certain limitations. Like being tied to your account and not being possible to package for resale in any used market. The same way you come to understand this when you buy a title on your Kindle. When you buy a physical item, however, you expect that item to belong to you. It is yours to keep. Or to give away. Or to resell. Except, they have recently circumvented that ability. It would be like fitting a car with some sort of ignition system that only starts when it can identify the driver as the original owner. Buy a used car and you can't start it. Buy a used car and you are "depriving" those poor car designers and manufacturers and distributors and salesmen. Why, you're starving them and their precious families! You cretin! How dare you buy a used car, you selfish fuck!

Which brings us to a final point. They need to make up their fucking minds on what they're selling you. Are you selling me a license to play a game? In that case, fine, I undertand that it is limited to me. I also understand that I may not be able to resell a license. But, if you're only selling me a license (which is why you claim I can't do what I want with a game and why I may not be able to sell it or always have access to it), then I expect you to provide me with a replacement copy of that game's media when I have lost or damaged it. After all, you say that I am paying for a LICENSE and not a physical ITEM. So if I still hav a license for it, why should I have to pay all over again? Right - because they want to tell you you're paying for a license when it's convenient and they want to tell you you're paying for a physical good when *that's* convenient . . . like when it's time to replace cassettes with CDs.

They also need to reduce the prices. If a game is only good for one person (siblings? spouse? sorry, but fuck them!), a game can not be resold, and I am paying only for a license, and there are no distribution costs but trivial bandwidth . . . then don't charge me the same traditional $60. A business model that takes away from the consumer is a shitty one and a poor way to compete. You'll get your lunch eaten, just like the other industries have been. A business model that serves your customers? Yeah, that'll work. It works for Valve. It works for GoG. It works for a lot of people.

When you buy a game you aren't purchasing a product just a licence. You are a licencee and the holders of the intellectual property can dictate what you can and can't access because of that very reason. The "used" car bit makes zero sense in comparison.

#15 Posted by LordXavierBritish (6320 posts) -

@Jimbo said:

@LordXavierBritish said:

Buying used is legalized piracy.

Fact.

Unless you're being sarcastic, no it isn't.

Piracy = unlimited copies from one new copy. No cap on the number of copies available.

Used sales = one copy for every one new copy sold. Number of used copies potentially available in the market is strictly capped at total new sales.

For there to be a million used copies floating around there must have been at least a million new sales which the publisher made money on at some point. You can have a million pirated copies out there from one (or I guess even zero) sales. They are fundamentally different and piracy has far more potential to cause harm than used sales, for the reasons stated. That's why one is illegal and the other is a legally protected right for the consumer.

Used sales aren't capped at total new sales. Used games bought used are returned used all the time. One new copy of a game can exchange hands an unlimited number of times.

#16 Posted by Gargantuan (1881 posts) -
@LordXavierBritish said:

Buying used is legalized piracy.

Fact.

Yeah! Fuck people who work in stores!
 
I know you're joking.
Online
#17 Edited by Branthog (7342 posts) -

@Jimbo said:

@LordXavierBritish said:

Buying used is legalized piracy.

Fact.

Unless you're being sarcastic, no it isn't.

Piracy = unlimited copies from one new copy. No cap on the number of copies available.

Used sales = one copy for every one new copy sold. Number of used copies potentially available in the market is strictly capped at total new sales.

More specifically:

Piracy == Infringing copyright licensing in the duplication of someone else's intellectual property and then reselling it for profit. People keep forgetting this. Someone copying a game for their friend isn't piracy. A thousand people sharing a torrent isn't piracy. It's copyright violation, but not piracy. The organized crime rings that have banks of DVD duplication machines running 24x7 and then package them into DVD cases and sell them on the street in NYC or Malaysia or on eBay for $5 is piracy. Unfortunately "piracy" is a word misused by the media just as much as they have the word "hacker".

Used sales == Protected legal right of all citizens and consumers as granted by the First Sale Doctrine recognized by the Supreme Court in 1908 and codified in the Copyright Act of 1976. Therefore, anyone who says that you have some obligation either legally or ethically to only "buy new" can eat a dick. People need to stop letting their understanding of their rights and of the purpose (abused as it is) of copyright be set by the industries and lobbyists which are best served by the further abuse of those copyrights and the stripping of consumers of theirs.

  • The doctrine allows the purchaser to transfer (i.e., sell, lend or give away) a particular lawfully made copy of the copyrighted work without permission once it has been obtained. This means that the copyright holder's rights to control the change of ownership of a particular copy ends once ownership of that copy has passed to someone else, as long as the copy itself is not an infringing copy. This doctrine is also referred to as the "right of first sale," "first sale rule," or "exhaustion rule."
#18 Posted by Jimbo (9776 posts) -

@LordXavierBritish said:

@Jimbo said:

@LordXavierBritish said:

Buying used is legalized piracy.

Fact.

Unless you're being sarcastic, no it isn't.

Piracy = unlimited copies from one new copy. No cap on the number of copies available.

Used sales = one copy for every one new copy sold. Number of used copies potentially available in the market is strictly capped at total new sales.

For there to be a million used copies floating around there must have been at least a million new sales which the publisher made money on at some point. You can have a million pirated copies out there from one (or I guess even zero) sales. They are fundamentally different and piracy has far more potential to cause harm than used sales, for the reasons stated. That's why one is illegal and the other is a legally protected right for the consumer.

Used sales aren't capped at total new sales. Used games bought used are returned used all the time. One new copy of a game can exchange hands an unlimited number of times.

But never becomes more than one copy. "Number of used copies potentially available in the market is strictly capped at total new sales."

One used copy can be experienced an unlimited number of times, but then, as soon as a publisher chooses to put that experience on a disk and sell it they give up their claim on the experience that one copy can provide. It's not the used gamer's fault that they chose the line of work they did or that the rules are what they are.

#19 Posted by LordXavierBritish (6320 posts) -

@Jimbo said:

@LordXavierBritish said:

@Jimbo said:

@LordXavierBritish said:

Buying used is legalized piracy.

Fact.

Unless you're being sarcastic, no it isn't.

Piracy = unlimited copies from one new copy. No cap on the number of copies available.

Used sales = one copy for every one new copy sold. Number of used copies potentially available in the market is strictly capped at total new sales.

For there to be a million used copies floating around there must have been at least a million new sales which the publisher made money on at some point. You can have a million pirated copies out there from one (or I guess even zero) sales. They are fundamentally different and piracy has far more potential to cause harm than used sales, for the reasons stated. That's why one is illegal and the other is a legally protected right for the consumer.

Used sales aren't capped at total new sales. Used games bought used are returned used all the time. One new copy of a game can exchange hands an unlimited number of times.

But never becomes more than one copy. "Number of used copies potentially available in the market is strictly capped at total new sales."

One used copy can be experienced an unlimited number of times, but then, as soon as a publisher chooses to put that experience on a disk and sell it they give up their claim on the experience that one copy can provide. It's not the used gamer's fault that they chose the line of work they did or that the rules are what they are.

Publisher's aren't selling discs, they're selling experiences.

Someone who bought the newest Assassin's Creed used to play through the single player and then returned it to Gamestop isn't going to ever buy it new, that's a lost sale.

I'm not saying your point isn't valid, but in the eyes of the publisher there is only a marginal difference between the person torrenting their game and the person buying their game used. You can make the argument that a ripped copy of a game can be duplicated an unlimited number of times, but at the end of the day Gamestop is pretty much just a physical seeder.

All I'm saying is the choice to the average consumer when choosing to not buy new is either paying for a ridiculous mark up at Gamestop, getting it off an independent buyer, renting it, or pirating it for free. In any of those cases the publisher and developers see no money, so I don't see how anyone can approve of used game sales yet look down on people who torrent games unless they are solely concerned with the livelihood of those specific outlets.

#20 Posted by Branthog (7342 posts) -

@Demoskinos said:

@Branthog said:

I don't see how buying used games makes anyone a "fickle bunch". Are you "fickle" or showing a disregard for content creators (and, more likely, the middle-men between you and the actual content creators) when you buy a used book, album, television, car, clothing, appliance, or house?

You have the right to do what you wish with a product you have purchased and all these morons are doing is making a desperate attempt to prevent the decay of their aging business models in the same way that the music and movie industries have. That is, not competing on merit, but by trying to weasel their dying methodologies into carrying their stock prices for just one more precious quarter. Some do it through legislation of ridiculous copyright laws which are nothing but veiled attempts to thwart competition. Others do it by making it so that if there are three gamers who live in your house, all three have to buy another copy of the game or pay extra cash. Sort of like how when you buy a book, it expires after one reading and you can't loan your book to another person until they've paid another $10. Oh, wait . . .

The difference that people seem to fail to keep in mind is that when you purchase a game through online services, you are doing so with the understanding that it comes with certain limitations. Like being tied to your account and not being possible to package for resale in any used market. The same way you come to understand this when you buy a title on your Kindle. When you buy a physical item, however, you expect that item to belong to you. It is yours to keep. Or to give away. Or to resell. Except, they have recently circumvented that ability. It would be like fitting a car with some sort of ignition system that only starts when it can identify the driver as the original owner. Buy a used car and you can't start it. Buy a used car and you are "depriving" those poor car designers and manufacturers and distributors and salesmen. Why, you're starving them and their precious families! You cretin! How dare you buy a used car, you selfish fuck!

Which brings us to a final point. They need to make up their fucking minds on what they're selling you. Are you selling me a license to play a game? In that case, fine, I undertand that it is limited to me. I also understand that I may not be able to resell a license. But, if you're only selling me a license (which is why you claim I can't do what I want with a game and why I may not be able to sell it or always have access to it), then I expect you to provide me with a replacement copy of that game's media when I have lost or damaged it. After all, you say that I am paying for a LICENSE and not a physical ITEM. So if I still hav a license for it, why should I have to pay all over again? Right - because they want to tell you you're paying for a license when it's convenient and they want to tell you you're paying for a physical good when *that's* convenient . . . like when it's time to replace cassettes with CDs.

They also need to reduce the prices. If a game is only good for one person (siblings? spouse? sorry, but fuck them!), a game can not be resold, and I am paying only for a license, and there are no distribution costs but trivial bandwidth . . . then don't charge me the same traditional $60. A business model that takes away from the consumer is a shitty one and a poor way to compete. You'll get your lunch eaten, just like the other industries have been. A business model that serves your customers? Yeah, that'll work. It works for Valve. It works for GoG. It works for a lot of people.

When you buy a game you aren't purchasing a product just a licence. You are a licencee and the holders of the intellectual property can dictate what you can and can't access because of that very reason. The "used" car bit makes zero sense in comparison.

This logic is betrayed by the fact that when a new medium arrives, you have to buy it all over again. As you also must do if you lose your copy or it becomes damaged (a scratched disc, for example). If you were merely purchasing a license, then there would be no problem providing you a duplicate of the content at a trivial fee. As I pointed out, they want to have their cake and eat it, too. Sometimes they want to play the card that "well, you only have a license for use of the content; not ownership of a physical good" when it is convenient to them. And then claim that you are dealing with ownership of a physical good, instead of just a license, when that suits them.

Therefore, when I purchase a game and I own it on a physical disc that is sitting in a case on my shelf, I expect to have the right to resell it as granted to me in the First sale Doctrine (which I detail in an earlier post, here). Granted, it may not necessarily apply to DLC or additional services, but everything that is on that disc should be my right to resell without limitations and should also - simply by sense of logic - be my right to let someone else in my household enjoy the content without having to pay an additional fee.

Do you believe that Ford could just slap a license on the sale of their cars so that you are obligated never to resell your car? Or that if you resell your car, someone else has to pay for the right to start the ignition? Or that you be obligated to only use the car on certain roads and with certain brands of fuel? After all, a car is a physical good as is a CD with a game on it or a DVD with a movie on it or a book with words on the pages it contains. Slapping a "license" on it doesn't negate that fact. And slapping a "license" on it doesn't mean it is right for them to negate your rights to resell the same way slapping a license (such as the many cited egregious EULAs of the last decade) on a piece of software doesn't negate any other rights you might have.

Unfortunately, the law seems to waffle on the entire application of First Sale rights on software. Sometimes they see it as a license (despite the fact that you have actual property physically in your hands) and sometimes they see it as an actual item; not merely a license. So part of the reason we're all still debating this silly bullshit is that the rest of the system is, too. (But my comments on having the right to resell are currently based on the treatment by those creators of the content as NOT merely being a license, when it suits them. If they can have it both ways, then so should the consumer).

For more details on the testing of First Sale rights where software is concerned, read up on Vernor vs. Autodesk. The courts ruled that when you purchase a piece of software, you own that instance of that software and can resell it as you like. A couple years later, on appeal, they reversed that decision and ruled that you can't. Then a couple years ago, another appeal, but the court refused to hear the case again (but you can rest assured it's not likely over yet).

I think that all we can really hope for is that we all grow out of this phase -- including the industries -- and that we make it through and into the next evolution of licensing, ownership, copyright, etc - without having lost any actual rights that we started with in the beginning. The most recent iteration of the Autodesk ruling takes away some of those rights, but that doesn't mean another ruling won't recover them. Perhaps, in another twenty years, we'll all look back on this and think about how absurd it was that we were flailing about to find how all these new models of distribution, licensing, ownership, consumption all go together in a world where the only limitation to distribution and duplication is an artificial one.

Until then, I think we're going to see a lot more absurd shit than DLC and season passes and EA trying to sell you a "re-download of a game you already fucking bought and paid for" for $5 a pop.

#21 Posted by cthomer5000 (749 posts) -

@Yanngc33 said:

@ShadowSkill11: And claiming that you're saving money by selling and buying your games used is bogus. Gamestop rapes you, taking back weak old games for 20$ when they were bought for 70 (tax included)and then certain used games (Black Ops) are sold a year later for 40$. My tip is to save up money, buy a new game and keep it.

Huh? This is a baffling bit of writing here. I've tracked every cent i've spent on games since owning my XBOX 360, and I can assure you i've saved shitloads by re-selling my game. I am honest enough to know that i'm not going to go back to 95% of the games I own, so there is no point in keeping them once i've finished them. If you get a good deal when buying and re-sell the game fairly quickly (lets say within 2 months), you can do amazingly well in getting your money back. There are a fair number of games i've actually profitted from over the last few years thanks to really good pre-order deals (usually through amazon).

While I can understand why people owned massive game collections, it ultimately seems a bit silly to me. The odds of you going back to play any of those games keep dropping over time as you add new games to your collection... so you're just throwing away money IMHO.

#22 Posted by Branthog (7342 posts) -

@LordXavierBritish said:

@Jimbo said:

@LordXavierBritish said:

@Jimbo said:

@LordXavierBritish said:

Buying used is legalized piracy.

Fact.

Unless you're being sarcastic, no it isn't.

Piracy = unlimited copies from one new copy. No cap on the number of copies available.

Used sales = one copy for every one new copy sold. Number of used copies potentially available in the market is strictly capped at total new sales.

For there to be a million used copies floating around there must have been at least a million new sales which the publisher made money on at some point. You can have a million pirated copies out there from one (or I guess even zero) sales. They are fundamentally different and piracy has far more potential to cause harm than used sales, for the reasons stated. That's why one is illegal and the other is a legally protected right for the consumer.

Used sales aren't capped at total new sales. Used games bought used are returned used all the time. One new copy of a game can exchange hands an unlimited number of times.

But never becomes more than one copy. "Number of used copies potentially available in the market is strictly capped at total new sales."

One used copy can be experienced an unlimited number of times, but then, as soon as a publisher chooses to put that experience on a disk and sell it they give up their claim on the experience that one copy can provide. It's not the used gamer's fault that they chose the line of work they did or that the rules are what they are.

Publisher's aren't selling discs, they're selling experiences.

Someone who bought the newest Assassin's Creed used to play through the single player and then returned it to Gamestop isn't going to ever buy it new, that's a lost sale.

I'm not saying your point isn't valid, but in the eyes of the publisher there is only a marginal difference between the person torrenting their game and the person buying their game used. You can make the argument that a ripped copy of a game can be duplicated an unlimited number of times, but at the end of the day Gamestop is pretty much just a physical seeder.

All I'm saying is the choice to the average consumer when choosing to not buy new is either paying for a ridiculous mark up at Gamestop, getting it off an independent buyer, renting it, or pirating it for free. In any of those cases the publisher and developers see no money, so I don't see how anyone can approve of used game sales yet look down on people who torrent games unless they are solely concerned with the livelihood of those specific outlets.

How the publisher or developer sees it isn't very relevant, though. The MPAA saw the video cassette recorder as "jack the ripper" and the movie industry as "a defenseless woman home alone at night". Chris Dodd sees people against SOPA as "terrorists". How they see the world has no bearing on the law (other than what they are then capable of lobbying into legislation, of course) or your rights.

Book publishers would love to see used bookstores shut down for the same reason developers would love to see used game stores shut down. Since you have the right to resell a book (or anything else that you own), what they'd like hardly matters. And that Gamestop is shitty and provides shitty compensation for used games to customers isn't the point -- whether a game is result at 99% of the original price or 9% of the original price, the right to resale is either there or it isn't.

As for your comparison of torrenting games versus buying used games - the obvious difference is that in one instance, someone legally paid for one copyrighted item, which they then legally sold to someone else and then that person legally sold that one item to someone else. Again, the right to first sale. In the other instance, you're participating in copyright infringement.

#23 Posted by Demoskinos (14589 posts) -

@Branthog: You completely have the right to sell your games. But like I pointed out the developers also have the right to restrict their content as they see fit. Take batman for example... rocksteady could have just flat out said if you want catwoman you have to pay $10 full stop for everyone. Yet, people who buy batman new get that $10 of content for free a small reward and a thank you from the developer for directly supporting their bottom line.

I don't think people who buy used should be rewarded with free content. If you want to wait and get it cheaper thats a very viable option and everyone is free to do that... but don't expect to get all the perks as everyone else who bought it new. That seems insane to me people would have that kind of entitlement.

#24 Posted by phish09 (1109 posts) -

Retarded gamers.

Trying to limit consumer rights since 2006.

You worry about yourself and your money and let these publishers and retailers worry about theirs. Belive me companies like EA, Activision, 2K, etc aren't being hurt at all by used sales. FACT: In order for a used copy of a game to be sold it must be sold NEW first. If you take away used game sales you are going to limit new game sales as well.

#25 Posted by LordXavierBritish (6320 posts) -

@Branthog: You're right.

But I want to see game resellers like Gamestop, or I guess only Gamestop at this point, shut down so I'd rather everyone just pirate games if they aren't going to buy them new anyway, and really developers should just encourage people to pirate if they want Gamestop gone.

I'm not wholly concerned with the legality of any of it.

#26 Posted by Foxtrot0245 (319 posts) -

All this speculation about used games hurting the creators assumes that any legitimate fraction of those people that play a specific game used would care enough to buy it at full price. Unless I am really excited for a game, I don't pay full price. Used games and special sales on new games (I got Rage new at GS for $20 a few days ago, for instance) just provide me an opportunity to play the games that I didn't really give enough of a shit about to even consider at $60. If these games never went down in price or weren't available used at a lower price, I (and a lot of people like me) would never play them... ever. This would lead to severely lacking online experiences and fewer people buying your game new, in my personal experience.

Think back about my $20 Rage purchase. I could not have cared less about that game, but I found it new at such a great price that I felt compelled to try it out (although I would have paid a similar price for used). This not only lead to one more person being on the servers for MP matchmaking (which this game seems to need), but now 3 of my friends have now purchased the game as well. One of them got it for $20 new like me, and the other two told me they got it at Best Buy for regular price. Think for a second, three people bought this game new simply because of my one purchase and recommendation... a purchase that never would have happened if the game wasn't available at my own personal price range (regardless of new or used).

I'm no "mathologist," but I think a specific game's popularity and online viability is exponentially increased by way of used game sales.

#27 Posted by Rawrz (590 posts) -

I never understood peoples logic that used games are evil, or robbing the developers, or hurting the market or any of that bullshit. Yeah developers dont see a profit from that used sale but in reality they shouldnt anyways. For a game to be used it was once sold as new and they seen there profit. Its kind of ridiculous to think they deserve to see a profit off of every single sale of one copy of the game. Im not the biggest fan of online passes though I can see there point with them, I just tend to hate the games that dont even bother to give a free trial so that you can try out the multiplayer and see if its something yo would wanna pay more to play more of.

#28 Posted by Napalm (9020 posts) -
@phish09 said:

You worry about yourself and your money and let these publishers and retailers worry about theirs. Belive me companies like EA, Activision, 2K, etc aren't being hurt at all by used sales.

Where's your proof? 
 
Oh, right. You have none. 
 
Also, it's believe*.
#29 Edited by CaptainCody (1505 posts) -

@LordXavierBritish said:

@Branthog: You're right.

But I want to see game resellers like Gamestop, or I guess only Gamestop at this point, shut down so I'd rather everyone just pirate games if they aren't going to buy them new anyway, and really developers should just encourage people to pirate if they want Gamestop gone.

I'm not wholly concerned with the legality of any of it.

This is an amazing idea. Unfortunately, I think at that point piracy would either be too unmountable or RIAA 2.0 would come in to slap everyones' shit.

@Napalm said:

@phish09 said:

You worry about yourself and your money and let these publishers and retailers worry about theirs. Belive me companies like EA, Activision, 2K, etc aren't being hurt at all by used sales.

Where's your proof? Oh, right. You have none. Also, it's believe*.

It would be incredibly presumptuous to assume a company would actually be downtrodden through used sales. A set amount of copies are flocked out to the public when a game is release. Either they sell or they don't. Their can't be used sales in the first place if a game never sold. Game companies may as well hang WWII-era stylized, "Borrowing games is the work of commies!" posters to exemplify their stance. Yet, that would give away how evil they are all too easily.

Lastly, if game companies really hate retailers then they can stop fucking making preorder content.

#30 Posted by Jay444111 (2441 posts) -

I am going to say this once more, if PC wants to stop releasing in stores, that is fine. But it will take consoles another 10 to 30 years to even THINK about trying to become DL only. Even then. They shouldn't be consoles at that point, they should just make their own brand of PCs if we are going that far.

But if the next xbox is going to eliminate used games by doing CD keys or download only, there is not way on this blue earth I will EVER buy one. I would rather just get a PC because I know that microsofts system of downloadable titles and sales of well... anything to do with online is draconion at best. Steam will always beat the big three when it comes to downloadable games. That is just a fact.

#31 Posted by Jay444111 (2441 posts) -

Also used games aren't even close to evil, at a certain point in every development of every video game, each and every single retail game gets sold out over time, even with sales and all that.

Try to find a new copy of the original Assassins creed. Or, better yet, find a brand new copy of God of War... yeah, pretty fucking hard. Or, an even better example find a brand new copy of Earthbound... See, over time used games are the ONLY way to buy certain video games after about a year or two.

In the long run, the used game system works, in the short term it is slightly damaging. but with things like fair online passes. (such as Alice Madness Returns which GIVES you a free version of the first game.) it encourages people to buy new. Now when a game does a online pass for certain things, I gotta call bullshit. but that is for another time.

But again, used games aren't evil, just people who barely understand the industry THINK it is evil.

#32 Posted by usgrovers (166 posts) -

@ShadowSkill11 said:

Background: In recent years to combat the huge loss in profits to retailers such as Gamestop console game companies have began using online passes to regain some of their lost profits. Other large companies such as Microsoft have been rumored to be using anti-used game technology in their next generation consoles.

Many of the gaming press and some gamers know that the money from used games sales don't go to the men and women who created the games. They go to the retailers(Gamestop, etc). As we all know gamers can be a fickle bunch. The younger gamers out there see online passes and new game only sales as a obstacle to enjoying their favorite hobby. All they care about are getting the great games they are used to as much as possible. What they don't understand/care about is the long game. What happens when the game companies stop making money. The quality and quantity of games will start to dry up. AAA titles will get fewer and fewer and a new rise of minigames and just plain bad games will become the new norm. Being a gamer is an expensive hobby for young people and always has been.

The only thing that is happening is that consoles are catching up to the PC once again even if it is destined to be the old Mario Kart-like rubber band race again. This time the next gen consoles are starting to use the retail models of PC's. Online services such as Steam, DirectToDrive, Origin, etc. These services don't allow the re-sale of games by the consumer. What is different from the current console market is that these online retailers frequently have sales that are known to discount the prices of games up to 90% after just a few months on the market. Does waiting a few months for 50% off a game equate with getting $5 off a used disc in a Gamestop a week later? Who's to say but in my opinion the consoles are finally starting to move forward after a 10 year stagnation period.

The problem with consoles emulating the distribution models of PCs is that they already have the competitive edge. PC digital distribution models are a helluva lot better than the typical disk/install/serial number model, but I seriously doubt a significant of game sales on consoles are of the "Games on Demand/PS3 Full Games" variety. While the Steam approach of deep discounts and sales is appealing, the current state of digital sales on Xbox Live and the PSN leaves something to be desired. For example, I can buy a new copy of Dragon Age: Origins Ultimate Edition for $19.99, but if I have a copy of original DA:O and want to digitally upgrade to Awakening, it's $39.99. The same applies for Oblivion and Shivering Isles. At this point, we can't ascertain the nature of the market if console games went all digital, as Steam is currently a competitor of consoles and I believe the discounts are a reflection of that fact. My fear is that an all-digital (or a disk/serial equivalent) will increase the "full price window" after a game is released, and actually reduce when games are discounted.

Another point about used games isn't necessarily their sale price ($5 off new is ridiculous and not a good deal) but it's the ability to trade games in. If I can trade in a game or two and save half off the retail cost, that increases the amount of games that I play. No one that I know has shelves of every single game they've ever bought, they trade in games they've finished and purchase the next round. I really think publishers are ignorant of the importance that the used game trade is to their bottom line, and I believe that if they could wave their wand and get rid of all used games, their sales would drop significantly. Additionally, used games out in the wild increases the audience for DLC and for the inevitable sequel; they're an important piece of marketing.

#33 Posted by usgrovers (166 posts) -
#34 Posted by Jimbo (9776 posts) -

@LordXavierBritish said:

@Jimbo said:

@LordXavierBritish said:

@Jimbo said:

@LordXavierBritish said:

Buying used is legalized piracy.

Fact.

Unless you're being sarcastic, no it isn't.

Piracy = unlimited copies from one new copy. No cap on the number of copies available.

Used sales = one copy for every one new copy sold. Number of used copies potentially available in the market is strictly capped at total new sales.

For there to be a million used copies floating around there must have been at least a million new sales which the publisher made money on at some point. You can have a million pirated copies out there from one (or I guess even zero) sales. They are fundamentally different and piracy has far more potential to cause harm than used sales, for the reasons stated. That's why one is illegal and the other is a legally protected right for the consumer.

Used sales aren't capped at total new sales. Used games bought used are returned used all the time. One new copy of a game can exchange hands an unlimited number of times.

But never becomes more than one copy. "Number of used copies potentially available in the market is strictly capped at total new sales."

One used copy can be experienced an unlimited number of times, but then, as soon as a publisher chooses to put that experience on a disk and sell it they give up their claim on the experience that one copy can provide. It's not the used gamer's fault that they chose the line of work they did or that the rules are what they are.

Publisher's aren't selling discs, they're selling experiences.

Someone who bought the newest Assassin's Creed used to play through the single player and then returned it to Gamestop isn't going to ever buy it new, that's a lost sale.

I'm not saying your point isn't valid, but in the eyes of the publisher there is only a marginal difference between the person torrenting their game and the person buying their game used. You can make the argument that a ripped copy of a game can be duplicated an unlimited number of times, but at the end of the day Gamestop is pretty much just a physical seeder.

All I'm saying is the choice to the average consumer when choosing to not buy new is either paying for a ridiculous mark up at Gamestop, getting it off an independent buyer, renting it, or pirating it for free. In any of those cases the publisher and developers see no money, so I don't see how anyone can approve of used game sales yet look down on people who torrent games unless they are solely concerned with the livelihood of those specific outlets.

No, if they're packaging their game as a physical product and putting it on a store shelf then they're selling copies, not experiences. That's not for them to decide - that's just how it is. They don't even talk in those terms themselves, they say 'We sold x million copies of y'. The same as authors sell books, not stories, and artists sell paintings, not an emotional experience. They're products which can by default be sold and re-sold unless the purchaser agrees otherwise at the point of sale. Games can be sold as service if they wish, as long as they're prepared to sell and market them as such (ie. by having the purchaser actively agree to a license) and I'm totally fine with that, though it will be reflected in what I'm prepared to pay for a game.

"In any of those cases the publisher and developers see no money..."

Except in three of those cases the publisher did see some money from that copy at some point. At the only point they were entitled to see some - first sale. Only in one of those cases are they not seeing any money at all from a copy, and that's the difference. I don't see why they specifically should be entitled to anything from future sales - hardly any other market works like that. You can typically own something or you can sell it, you can't sell it and still claim you own it. You'll probably sell a house at some point in your life, but I doubt you'll go find the people whose labour created the 'shelter and comfort' it offers and give them a cut - that's because they gave up any claim they have on those things when they sold it the first time.

#35 Posted by OppressiveStink (355 posts) -

@ShadowSkill11: @LordXavierBritish:

The price of a new game includes the value of the game used. This is the law of implied value. The reason many people are able to think about parting with 60 bucks for a video game that maybe has 10 hours of content is because there is a used market for it. This is the same for any physical product, be it CDs, DVDs, Video Games, what have you.

If you remove the ability for used products to exist, many companies think that this is a direct translation to the bottom line. This, like placing blame on piracy, is a logical fallacy. The theory that one used game = one lost sale is an old and broken one, made by companies without enough vision to really understand the future, ala: RIAA, MPAA.

Many companies make the same mistake with pricing the PC release of a product at the same price point as the console release. These games often lose value much faster than the console realm and are often driven to bargain prices weeks within the launch of the game. The smart company would see this trend and just offer their games for less, which would cut into the profit margins for used sales. Or price on a sliding scale (which seems to be the way things are going) and for every two weeks a game is out, drop the price until it's as low as they can go and still be profitable.

Hell, a really forward-minded company would offer to buy their own games used as credit to a future release and resell their own used games through their online site. But I guess that would require some of that old-school publisher mentality to die off and enough old shits are still in charge to want to keep that same corporate structure.

As far as online codes, I believe this: if it was designed soon enough to be on the disc, it was intended to be part of the overall release. What we see now is a company will put that it's doing it, but will not announce what piece that is until they can decide which piece of the already-developed game can be removed and put behind a pay wall. So in essence, this is not "Free" content, it is the "entire" content. If they want to say "Well this was designed for people to pay for", then you need to design and create it AFTER the game is published. Charging money for content that is already on the disc is fucking predatory and sickening, and in the case of Batman, not announcing that the part of the game that you cut out was one of the bigger bullet points to the game(catwoman) until a scant week before the game release is downright hostile to their purchasers.

#36 Posted by DarkGamerOO7 (574 posts) -

@Branthog said:

@Yanngc33 said:

@ShadowSkill11: I don't think online passes are evil. Game companies have got to make money somehow. Those who complain about online passes can only blame themselves for not buying the game new and supporting the men and women who made the game. And claiming that you're saving money by selling and buying your games used is bogus. Gamestop rapes you, taking back weak old games for 20$ when they were bought for 70 (tax included)and then certain used games (Black Ops) are sold a year later for 40$. My tip is to save up money, buy a new game and keep it.

The amount of money involve is irrelevant. There's no math involved in whether or not you possess first sale rights. We either have them or we don't. And it's not your job to be worried about putting food on the table of a publisher's employees (publishers, becoming decreasingly relevant in a day with so many direct distribution methods available). The gaming industry is bordering on the same idiocy that we saw the RIAA conducting. Persecuting their customers.

I buy almost exclusively new games, but nobody else should have to do that, just because I do. And am I a bad person if I wait for a game to be half price? Am I a bad person if I wait until it's five bucks on Steam? Am I a bad person if I wait to purchase a game until after the purchase no longer really benefits their NPD rankings?

Let's start applying this judgement and logic to all other products. Did you contract an architect and builder to build you a brand new house? Do you buy only brand new cars?

Yeah, I'm sympathetic to their predicament. It's hard when the world is moving faster than you are and your company is built on a model that can't keep up. Hell, that killed Kodak. Their model was built on selling and developing film. Digital cameras took over and their business dried up. I guess you and I are terrible people, if we ever bought or used digital cameras, too. We killed a company and screwed over all their employees. All because we selfishly stopped using film.

Of course, this *will* eventually become moot when consoles go digital some day. It *will* essentially just be Steam (or something similar) on a console and our expectations will be set. All this DLC and pass bullshit will, hopefully, go away. At the moment, it's just a sad attempt by a flailing industry trying to feel its way around to revenue.

And, yeah, season passes *are* evil. You don't see a problem with buying a copy of a game and having to pay more for it because there are more people in your household? After you buy a brand new movie at full price and take it home, you don't have to then dish out another $30, because you have three family members that are going to sit down and watch it with you. They are *evil* because they hamper *paying customers*. Paying customers who are paying full price for your brand new games. These are the people you are supposed to *value*.

I would also like to add to this discussion that if used sales of items are so evil, what about Libraries? Do you here J.K. Rowling complaining that potentially thousands of people can read her books for completely free? Does Green Day complain because the Library rents out their albums for free, where many take their album and rip it to their computer? Does George Lucas complain that all his films are available for rental at a Library for free? More Libraries are even starting to rent out video games for free and yet books are still being written and published, movies are still being filmed, albums recorded and video games developed. Companies need to learn how to stay competitive instead of treating their customers like potential criminals. Take Warner Brothers for example, they believe that double the amount of waiting time for their movies to become available on Netflix, and are unable to be streamed, that they will sell more Blu-Ray's and DVD's, however I guarantee you all that will lead to are people either renting the film from the Library, Video Rental Store, or Pirating it. I am willing to bet my bottom dollar that their plan will in no way move more movie sales.

Similarly video games that come with online passes or any of that other **** are not going to stop people from buying used, people will either skip out on the game altogether, rent it, or pirate it. It is the sad truth that companies need to start realizing. Stop treating your customers like criminals and they will happily purchase your games. When video game companies are putting out average games with short campaigns, derivative and generic multiplayer, and a game that lacks replay value for $60 and then start taking on paid downloadable content that should have been part of the game to begin with, people are not going to purchase your game. Don't blame the used market, blame yourself (the developers).

#37 Edited by LordXavierBritish (6320 posts) -

@Jimbo: Maybe that was how things used to work, but you can hardly make that argument anymore.

When i can go get the same experience for free without a disk then at some point I'm not paying the the disk anymore. Or I guess I'm paying solely for the disk.

The fact of the matter is that the physicality of media is disappearing and our music, movies, and most importantly games, are becoming less and less corporeal with each passing year. Our current way of thinking is insufficient to deal with this constantly changing market as is the economic structure built around it.

There is also quite a bit of difference between multimedia and a house.

I guess my main point is I don't fucking care about retailers, they were once a necessity that have increasingly become more and more of a nuisance.

Morally, not legally, there is no difference between buying used and downloading a game off the pirate bay, that is where my point begins and ends.

Also fuck Gamestop, that is also part of it.

#38 Posted by LordXavierBritish (6320 posts) -

@OppressiveStink: I don't pay $60 for a new game because I can sell it used, I pay $60 because I like video games.

Fuck physical media, it should be thrown in the shitter so we can wash our hands of it for good.

And I still don't see how buying used isn't a lost sale. Please explain.

#39 Posted by Jimbo (9776 posts) -

@LordXavierBritish said:

Morally, not legally, there is no difference between buying used and downloading a game off the pirate bay, that is where my point begins and ends.

OK, I disagree.

And you're right about where this is inevitably heading, but for now, retailers remain a critical link in the game distribution network. Publishers have to walk a fine line between getting as much as they can and not forcing these companies out of business, at least until they are comfortable to switch completely to digital sales.

Even when that does happen the game creators will still get screwed, they'll just be getting screwed by the console operators instead. Once the competing retailers are gone and digital sales are all that remains, who is gonna stop Microsoft when they decide they want 50% of the sale price, or whatever % they decide to take. If you want to play a game on your Microsoft console you will have no choice but to buy it through Microsoft's storefront in your living room, and there will be virtually no downward pressure on prices from anywhere.

I think the industry should be very careful about what they're trying to do here. In the long run I think they're much better off with retailers than without them.

#40 Posted by iam3green (14390 posts) -

yeah, it's not too evil. in about a 3 years of a new game coming out, it becomes hard to find them new. in the end used games is the only way to buy the game.

#41 Posted by LordXavierBritish (6320 posts) -

@Jimbo said:

@LordXavierBritish said:

Morally, not legally, there is no difference between buying used and downloading a game off the pirate bay, that is where my point begins and ends.

OK, I disagree.

And you're right about where this is inevitably heading, but for now, retailers remain a critical link in the game distribution network. Publishers have to walk a fine line between getting as much as they can and not forcing these companies out of business, at least until they are comfortable to switch completely to digital sales.

Even when that does happen the game creators will still get screwed, they'll just be getting screwed by the console operators instead. Once the competing retailers are gone and digital sales are all that remains, who is gonna stop Microsoft when they decide they want 50% of the sale price, or whatever % they decide to take. If you want to play a game on your Microsoft console you will have no choice but to buy it through Microsoft's storefront in your living room, and there will be virtually no downward pressure on prices from anywhere.

I think the industry should be very careful about what they're trying to do here. In the long run I think they're much better off with retailers than without them.

If any of the consoles' parent companies tried to pull shit publishers would just get up and leave. Would it hurt them in the short term? Yes, but it would companies like Microsoft and Sony even more. If Microsoft tired to take a 50% cut of all sales and Activision decided to jump ship to Sony, and announce they were doing so before the next console cycle, that's it. Microsoft is done.

And as long as PCs exist publishers and developers are going to have the option to sell their products directly, and that's if fronts like Steam, Desura, and Greenman didn't already exist.

Eventually consoles should probably just die, but that's not going to be for a long time. I guess I just assume Microsoft and Sony aren't retarded enough to run off every single publisher that likes money.

#42 Posted by HoboZero (174 posts) -

Worth noting that in many markets a thriving secondary market is considered essential to the health of the primary market. Look at the auto industry; many cars are sold on the merits of how well they maintain their value - i.e. how much they can later be sold for used or traded in. Car manufacturers have adapted to the used market quite well - trade-ins and buy backs encourage people to buy new (and even when sales are private often proceeds go towards new vehicles), selling factory re-certified vehicles, providing repairs and maintenance for used vehicles, and so on. Many drivers would not be able to afford new cards without selling their previous vehicle.

If you want an extreme enough example, why not say no one can sell a house they have lived in, because the original contractors, architect, and realtors won't be paid again? We don't consider the contractors as having been "screwed. I guess the modern idea of "licensing" rather than "owning" content sort of muddies any comparisons to physical objects like cars or houses, but I've never understood how the idea of not owning my copies of games, music, movies, etc. has any benefits for me the consumer - always seemed like a lopsided contract.

A healthy secondary market is not necessarily a bad thing - one could argue that Gamestop, et al. might not be able to have as many brick and mortar stores if they didn't have used game revenue, and more retail locations can only benefit publishers. And while I don't have studies at hand, it seems likely that most of the cash gamers get for used games go right back into purchasing more, often new games. In any case, other markets have shown used sales are not automatically a detriment to the primary market

Publishers certainly have the right to restrict the use of their product as much as the market will bear, just as consumers have the right to stop purchasing that product. Personally, I would like to see publishers either embrace the secondary market in some interesting way, or otherwise introduce some compelling reasons why I should forfeit my first-sale rights (Steam seems to well offering frequent huge sales, ability to gift software, bundles, etc), but I don't really see them doing either.

#43 Posted by kgb0515 (411 posts) -

Pretty sure that games like CoD will continue to sell millions at launch thereby making billions. On top of that, developers release DLC that was most likely ready for launch from release day 1 over a year's time and generate sizeable profits from said content. Developers will continue to make money despite used game sales. Used games may hurt their bottom line, but I feel like they are playing up the impact just a little too much. I don't see places like Gamestop going anywhere soon, but new console tech may make modding more difficult as pirated discs will be more difficult to duplicate without being detected by continuous software updates.

#44 Posted by Levio (1784 posts) -

Why do gamers worry so much about the economic livelihood of the game companies when the companies are willing to screw consumers over everyday with shovelware, absurd DLC and microtransaction schemes, DRM that hurts the experience for legitimate players, shoddy network access, in-game advertisement, online access code management, day 1 patches, and bad Duke Nukem games?

#45 Posted by kingzetta (4307 posts) -

Well If I made a game I'd like people to pay me for it, instead of paying gamestop.

#46 Posted by OppressiveStink (355 posts) -

@LordXavierBritish:

You may not, but others do, even if subconsciously. It doesn't matter if you don't intend to resell, I'm saying, the implied value of a video game and any other physical product is the value on the used market. Just like the taxes companies pay, the boxing fees, media costs, these are all shifted on to you via the price of a 60 dollar game. They don't break it down for you, but you pay those either way and also, the inherent "loss" of a sale through used trading.

As far as referencing the lost sales argument, to state that every used copy is a one:one loss is wrong. There's no way to prove that the person who buys used would ever have bought at full price, so you can't count that exactly as a lost sale. Furthermore, after the first few months, a game is no longer printed by the company, which is usually when the prices begin to fall. So, the stock that's available has already been purchased by the retailers who are selling the game. Thus the "lost" sale is more in the land of the retail chain than the actual company who made these games.

It looks nice on paper stating "hey, if all these guys bought our game new, we'd make a shitload more money!" but it isn't true. Many people would go without, the only games really guaranteed to sell are the known quantities and you could argue, at least for the smaller companies, used sales actually promote the sale of new games. If your game is an unknown title and one of your friends picks it up on a whim, you play it at their house and you go buy it, is that used sale a lost sale or a gained sale? I can say this happens because it happened with me and Vanquish. I purchased that new, after my friend bought it used and we played it together.

Same thing goes for piracy with the 1:1 sales loss. You can't prove that someone would buy that at ANY price and for the most part, the majority of pirates are either 1, people who can't buy the product locally in their geo location, or 2, games are price-prohibitive in their location (like Brazil).

Businesses really wish it was cut and dry, so they could enforce more regulation on you, effectivly making the government and content providers the ones enforcing copyright instead of the copyright holders(we already have laws that give copyright holders legal opportunities to enforce copyright, they just don't want to spend the time/money,) an example of this is SOPA/PIPA.

#47 Posted by SteamPunkJin (1286 posts) -

Been saying for at least a year that people need to get ready for this next-gen. Online passes will be gone and you will miss them, your console will become a PC and there will be no second hand market. It just makes sense, hopefully they'll get wise and do massive sales a la Steam, but since consoles are a closed system and economy it's not guaranteed, for the first few years we'll likely see consumers bent over a barrel. I'm not saying I support, but I have a hard time seeing things go any other way.

#48 Posted by usgrovers (166 posts) -

@HoboZero said:

Worth noting that in many markets a thriving secondary market is considered essential to the health of the primary market. Look at the auto industry; many cars are sold on the merits of how well they maintain their value - i.e. how much they can later be sold for used or traded in. Car manufacturers have adapted to the used market quite well - trade-ins and buy backs encourage people to buy new (and even when sales are private often proceeds go towards new vehicles), selling factory re-certified vehicles, providing repairs and maintenance for used vehicles, and so on. Many drivers would not be able to afford new cards without selling their previous vehicle.

If you want an extreme enough example, why not say no one can sell a house they have lived in, because the original contractors, architect, and realtors won't be paid again? We don't consider the contractors as having been "screwed. I guess the modern idea of "licensing" rather than "owning" content sort of muddies any comparisons to physical objects like cars or houses, but I've never understood how the idea of not owning my copies of games, music, movies, etc. has any benefits for me the consumer - always seemed like a lopsided contract.

A healthy secondary market is not necessarily a bad thing - one could argue that Gamestop, et al. might not be able to have as many brick and mortar stores if they didn't have used game revenue, and more retail locations can only benefit publishers. And while I don't have studies at hand, it seems likely that most of the cash gamers get for used games go right back into purchasing more, often new games. In any case, other markets have shown used sales are not automatically a detriment to the primary market

Publishers certainly have the right to restrict the use of their product as much as the market will bear, just as consumers have the right to stop purchasing that product. Personally, I would like to see publishers either embrace the secondary market in some interesting way, or otherwise introduce some compelling reasons why I should forfeit my first-sale rights (Steam seems to well offering frequent huge sales, ability to gift software, bundles, etc), but I don't really see them doing either.

Indeed. There is a proportional relationship between the cost of a commodity and necessity of a secondary market. Most individuals can go out and by a CD of every band they like at $10 a pop because it's relatively inexpensive. However, buying all my favorite movies on Blu-ray at $25 a pop hurts a bit more. Games are rather expensive at $60 a pop, so a healthy secondary market keeps demand high among consumers who can't (or won't) purchase every single game they want to play new. Publishers are teetering on the edge of hubris with their crusade to end used game sales, and it will hurt them in the long run when a substantial portion of people who play their games cease doing so, either out of principle or economics.

#49 Posted by usgrovers (166 posts) -

@SteamPunkJin said:

Been saying for at least a year that people need to get ready for this next-gen. Online passes will be gone and you will miss them, your console will become a PC and there will be no second hand market. It just makes sense, hopefully they'll get wise and do massive sales a la Steam, but since consoles are a closed system and economy it's not guaranteed, for the first few years we'll likely see consumers bent over a barrel. I'm not saying I support, but I have a hard time seeing things go any other way.

If this happens, I am convinced that the sales numbers for console games will begin to resemble the sales numbers for PC games.

#50 Posted by LordXavierBritish (6320 posts) -

@OppressiveStink: You're right, you can't prove someone who torrents a game would ever buy it.

But I guarantee you the guy buying Modern Warefare 3 for $55 used would buy it for new $60 if the option wasn't available.

Is every used sale a lost sale? No, but almost every used sale within the first two months or so of release is. The only games that aren't losing sales are year one of two year old titles, titles publishers aren't counting on to bring in revenue anymore.

But in that window after launch, you can bet your ass a used sale is a 1:1 loss.