Second hand sales laws?
Are there any laws prohibiting tampering with a products' advertised and sold features after the sale? Much like a company cannot advertise a feature its product does not have, does that extend to second hand sales?
Sony has officially extended its tax on gamers who buy secondhand PlayStation titles, confirming that all future Sony games with network functionality will be mediated through an online pass system. The company told Destructoid that the PSN Pass system will be incorporated into all upcoming Sony Computer Entertainment PS3 …
They could probably work it that opening the package constitutes accepting a non-transferable licence between the original purchaser and Sony. The second-hand purchaser will have no such contract and will have to buy a new one.
But it's one hell of a Sony tax for the privilege of buying one of their 'hmmm this console really isn't anything as good as they promised all those years ago' games. Like a lot of peoples' PS3s, mine has been relegated to the role of an okay Blu-Ray player.
They're not tampering with features of the product sold, they are restricting access to the separate online service to their customers. People who buy second hand are not their customers (unless they buy an online pass.)
I used to be fine with second hand sales, but the aggressive way high street stores are pushing them nowadays is taking the piss. You can't compete with someone selling your own product at a lower price unless you give the brand new version something unique.
Sony obviously do have to tread carefully though, with their recent PR fiascos the last thing they need is passes not working or being 40 character alphanumerics that are an arse to type in. But if it's not too much of a hassle for *their* paying customers (well, them and the games developers) I can't see this being an issue. I buy my games new unless I kind of want it but I suspect it's going to be crap (e.g. anything by Treyarch) in which case I pick it up bargain bin some months down the line.
All this crap is why Sony went from dominating console sales to a me too also ran 3rd place in one generation. The PS3 will finish in third place this generation and if Sony doesn't get their crap together they will be the next Sega next generation. And this coming from a PS3 owner.
Give them a big clap and a cheer! We all love them don't we boys and girls.
I hope that they somehow prevent me from doing anything else I was previously promised when I bought my PS3, because it is all too functional for me, what with me merely being an end user and with no chance of ever being able to get some kind of compensation.
I was hoping that they would institute some kind of music limiting service that no longer allows you to play your own MP3's, but I may have to wait until the PS4 is out before I am prevented from doing that.
Has anyone got any spare nails? I need them for the Sony Coffin I am building, and I have got through about 5lbs of them!
its exactly the same with the latest game I bought for the xbox, "cough" Space Marine had a unique code in the box, that i used and if anyone wanted to progress in the online mulitplayer would need to fork out $10 if they havent the code.
and thats on a system where you have to pay!
Your now buying products where you are not free to do as you like with. You've purchased the product you should be allowed to send it on if you like. IT YOURS. With things like this you can sell it on but its not the product you bought therefore drastically devaluing it to another person.
Its one of the reasons I still buy Albums on CD and don't download games on demand. Singles and cheap iPhone games are one thing but when your buying full price games and album, why shouldn't you be able to sell them on?
They aren't restricting use of the game offline, that would be wrong. But they are restricting access to the online service to those that have paid for it.
One thing that everyone seems to overlook is that video games are in a unique position. Unlike books, movies etc. there can be an ongoing cost for the company that sells the game due to online play, yet there is no ongoing revenue. The more you play the game online the more it costs them.
The online pass is a pretty good way to handle this. It would be even better if the games were sold at a discount and the online pass were sold separately. That way those that never want to play online wouldn't have to pay for it.
you do realize that you can still sale your game 2nd hand? this right have not been taken away from you. The single player campaign is not effected by the online-pass in any way or form. In fact, they are implementing the online-pass _because_ they don't want to stop you from selling your game 2nd hand!
It is the access to the multi-player part that the online-pass is trying to address. The argument is; people are using the servers even though the developer didn't receive a single cent from them! This, of course, won't be a problem is the 2nd hand market didn't start until 3 months from the release of the game.
You see, games make most of their money from pre-orders and the first few weeks of release; very few games are exception to this rule. The 2nd hand market became a problem when it started to compete with new games in the 1st few days of the game release! There is no way for a new game to compete against a 2nd hand game since both match each other in every way.... except the price. The solution, online pass to get some money from the _online_ players who didn't buy a new copy.
to sum it up for you, there is a difference between you not being able to resell the item in your hand and reselling the access right to the server!
"The argument is; people are using the servers even though the developer didn't receive a single cent from them!"
No, they received the money from the original purchaser who NO LONGER HAS ACCESS!!!! Will they refund him the cost of the online access as he is no longer using the service? didn't think so
"Other publishers, including EA, THQ, Codemasters and Warner, have also used an online pass system in their games too."
You're forgetting that Steam extends this abuse of statutory rights too. Girlfriend recently bought Civ 5 (physically, in a shop and everything) and had to activate it on Steam. She was then unable to sell it on eBay when she subsequently discovered it was a shit game.
I've still not been able to explain to her satisfaction why she can't sell a game that she bought. I understand her confusion.
And Sony wonder why people are so keen to try and circumvent DRM switches??
I'm not saying it's right but you've pretty much not been able to sell PC games back to stores (Gamestop et al) since noCD(DVD) type cracks/rips have been able to port the whole kaboodle onto PC HDDs for years - most games companies have given up on on-the-disk protection on the PC because it doesn't work; they get much more draconian about it (*coughs Ubisoft*)... and as these draconian measures go, Steam is one of the lesser evils.
She might not be able to sell Civ5 but she might be able to gift it to a Steam friend maybe (in exchange for the first round of drinks up the pub or something)? Assuming, of course, she knows anyone that would like it.
You can't gift a game to a Steam friend, otherwise this is how she'd have sold it (remember, I said eBay, so she would technically know the buyer and be able to gift it to them).
The only alternative she had was to hand over her entire Steam account, which she was tempted to do given it's the only game registered.
Yes, folks, Sony doesn't want to provide you with a service for no charge! How unreasonable of them.
I don't understand why so many gamers don't grasp the simple concept that if they buy a game off another gamer the producer of that game doesn't get a penny out of the deal.
and much less than half of those parts would be manufacturers, so no real comparison there either. My Peugeot has brake-pads from Lucas and a clutch from Borg and Beck, both of whom make the parts for the manufacturers but are sold via factors with a lot less premium than those coming in a box with a logo to match the one on the tailgate.
The spares and servicing analogy doesn't hold water
"I don't understand why so many people don't grasp the simple concept that if they buy a <*> off another person the producer of that <*> doesn't get a penny out of the deal."
* - jumper / car / book / film / ...
Why is it different for games then?
That is the nature of selling items you own to other people...
If I buy a second-hand car, I don't expect the manufacturer of the car to get a cut.
In this case, I think it is fair that they buyer of the second-hand game should be able to re-register it with their system, depriving the original buyer of the ability to play it online with the same code. Surely, without the physical media, the original purchaser wouldn't be able to do this anyway?
No it isn't. There is no difference between the new purchaser using resource on the game server and the original purchaser using resources on the game server. There isn't an increase in the number of copies of the game out there.
The golden rule of PC (Steam) gaming is don't buy new. Also, PC games are cheaper to start with.
I generally do the video/game comparison. How many hours am I likely to get out of it and how much joy vs renting a video. Also buying games during the steam sales gets you them for pennies.
I broke my rule for black-ops and regretted it. It's rubbish compared to hl2 which I got for peanuts a few months earlier.
Of course the producer of the game gets paid. They have the right of first sale. For many gamers they expect to recoup the reasonable trade-in value of their played games to fund the purchase of new ones. If they couldn't sell on the games they've bought and are now bored with, they wouldn't buy so many new games in the first place.
Stopping this is short term thinking. They will loose new sales are a result and so their over all revenue will go down and not up.
You don't think their customers are suddenly going to get given more pay/pocket money/birthday presents to compensate. The games market is just as built on trade ins as the car industry, go and stand in any games shop on a Saturday and watch the lines of people coming in with a bag full of old titles and some cash to fund the latest game. Most of those sales will disappear if they can't do it.
Talking to friends with older kids it seems that as they get older the churn gets faster, the games producers are getting nearly all the trade-in value of selling on old games. Try asking in your local games shop what the difference is between selling them a used game for cash and trading in against a new title and you'll see why very few games aren't traded in for new ones.
So yes the games producers do get paid.
Sell on old games is how they do get paid.
are 12yr old Xbox fanboys. They think everything is free, everyone works for free, everything should be downloaded for free.
When they grow up and join the working world (which is unlikely in the case of an Xbox owner), they will realize that people need to get paid for their products, and that freeloading thru life is not really an option.
This won't make much difference to me, I've already stopped buying PS3 games entirely after the security breach. I'm just keeping it as a blueray player atm.
But in general, expect to see a lot of people switching to Xbox rather than continue putting up with Sony (unless Microsoft starts doing it too, of course)
Xbox owners have a similar system and also have to pay for Live.
Nintendos online - sorry it is useless and a nightmare to use.
PCs not sure, haven't played any online multiplayer on them, nor traded.
The money would be going back to PS and used for the multiplayer servers.
There's basically no resale value on PC games - for all intents and purposes, once you've bought a PC game you can never resell it; the consoles have traditionally relied on "untweakable" hardware and physical disks as copy protection - on the PC it's been the wild west since, well, before there were IBM compatible PCs (think every generation of "personal computer" since the Beeb).
Circumventing copy-protection systems on the PC has been there since the get go so the protection systems have been getting more and more shirty forever (Starforce comes to mind - sack of cak that was).
So, the advantages of PC gaming are that the games cost less in the first place and (MMOs excepted) there's no additional fee to play online - some are even "free to buy", like Team Fortress 2 and rely on micro-transactions after the fact to fund the game (moar hatz).
The downside is that there's no resale market for PC games.
No, the second hand market is abused by the likes of Game, CEX and HMV to make profits without those pesky publishers getting any more money than that original sale. This move isn't banning the second hand market, it's simply upping the cost of second hand titles... or, potentially, dropping the price you pay at the shop since demand for them will be lower as the cheapskates balk at the extra costs. Which I never understood anyway since the price of recently released second hand games tend to be close to the price of a brand new title anyway and the packrat in me won't sell titles back for store credit.
This is only affecting online multi-play... which isn't so big a deal since single or local multiplayer will still work. Besides, console gamers can't provide their own private servers and have to use the platform holders middleman software and public servers and once those are closed down, online multiplaying of those titles will go with them.
The key thing is ensuring the publisher gets a slice of the pie so they can keep paying studios to pump out titles.
When you look at the gouging Game and co do on second hand games, it seems a little unfair that the developers are not getting a cut. I saw R3 second hand for £4 more at a high street shop (HMV or Game) than I paid at a supermarket day after release.
If I paid a decent amount S/H eg £15 I would not begrudge paying this, provided it is not a lot (around £5 I suppose).
That said I do tend to buy new and keep, only selling games which are really poor.
I went to a lot of effort to obtain the US only Uncharted 3 demo, as before this will not effect me.
The online pass is per PS3 and can be redownloaded per account so if you lose your PS3 or have more than 1 you can reuse it.
lol, wonder what this does re rentals from say lovefilm lol
Anyway give up on the consoles and get Onlive on your PC instead. Most new games aren't worth more than a couple of hours game play anyway. *Goes back to working and muttering until home time so as to play more nuclear dawn and buildcraft.*
I mean, if you're a pirate you can't normally play games on the net because of some version difference or because your console is detected as being modchipped etc.
So, think of it from some young kid who occasionally buys a game new but buys a lot of his games used. All of a sudden he can't play most of his games online. (yes, I know this isn't retroactive to old used games, just spitballing here)
He looks at the pirate option as a lot more enticing, after all if his legally purchased games give him the exact same experience as a pirates then why not just pirate? After all it costs less and he's not going to lose any functionality.
@Robert Long 1
Yeah - exactly.... becuase Vauxhall, Ford, Volvo and others all get a cut when you sell your car to someone else ... Oh wait, that's wrong isn't it
Let me try that again, Barrat's, Wimpy, Cala homes etc all get a cut when you sell your house ... nah, that's wrong too.
One last try, Nikon, Canon, Panasonic, Sony etc all get a cut from the 2nd hand camera market ... nope - still not working.
Personally I'm really sick of the second hand game market. Just a couple of days ago I brought a nice fresh copy of Gears 3 in game for 39.99 only for the spotty oik to tell me I could have a second hand one for 37.99.
The thing is, I'd rather most of the money went to the company who made the game so maybe they might invest some of it in making something else I'd like to play, rather than going into the pocket of a money grabbing leech of an organization.
What's wrong with that exactly? It's not like Game will have stolen the second hand copy back is it? As others have said, if you buy a car and sell it on, the dealership doesn't get a cut. However if you give it back to the dealer - new but registered - they can't sell it as new anymore, they have to absorb a hit on their profits for the sale. If you sell it back to the dealer - used but practically new - they'll make a bit more as they charge you for the use you've had, and then sell it for a little less than a brand new one. This is exactly what Game do, and they're within their rights to do it.
As for the publishers deserving an extra something back, their part of the bargain is to provide an online space for each copy of the game, for as long as there is decent support for it. If the original owner sells their copy, they can't play anymore, and so the online space for that game transfers to the new owner. It's still one space, per game, and still the same number of games in circulation.
Frankly I'll stop buying stuff for either of my PS3s, plenty of content is impossible to copy between systems, even if you 'officially' redownload it from the PSN store. While xbox might be doing the same thing for certain games, its not policy yet so until it is, they will get my gaming dollars.
Currently, you can buy a brand new game, play it, get bored of it, part-ex it for a shiny new game, rinse and repeat.
Under Sony's brave new world, you buy a new game, play it, get bored of it, it has no residual value so you throw it away, you don't part-ex for a new game and Sony lose a sale. They don't make an additional sale to the second hand gamer and they miss the opportunity to sell downloadable content to two customers.
What Sony fail to realise is that the second hand games market is actually good for them.
I can't really see a problem with this. It happens all the time with PC games that are bought second hand. Some require you to register the keys, and if thats done nobody else can play the game online even with a valid key because its already registered to somebody else. It was bound to happen sooner or later.
I see theres a lot of people commenting here who actually have no idea what they are talking about.
First off, the online pass is linked to your psn account, not your console, so if you buy a new console, you can simply log into your old account and download the pass again at no extra charge.
And secondly this is done to try and get some revenue back off there games as games companys are losing a lot of money off second hand sales, if you want someone to blame for this it's shops like blockbuster.
The fact that this system is slowly working it's way onto 360 titles is worrying though, i mean your paying for the online features pretty much in advance. It's understandable from sonys stance, microsoft seem to be using it as a platform to make themselves more filty rich though.
In respect of second hand games, There has to be a reasonable price difference for me to consider a used item, £2 wouldn't cut it and in the past the spotty oik in Game has been =told they are having a tin bath.
I guess when the sales drop Fony will be screaming about piracy being the cause rather than the removal of the legitimate right to sell on property that you have paid for. Another reason the Fony products DONT get any consideration in this household. In light of their repeated attacks on our fair and legitimate use, we vote with our wallets, others should do likewise - nothing focuses a group of shareholders like falling sales figures.
Don't have an issue with this, running and hosting an online service costs the publisher money. Currently buyers of second hand copies of games are enjoying that service at no cost, this is not a great business model for the developer. If you accept that the second hand game market is here to stay then moves like this are inevitable, the purchaser of a used game can obviously enjoy the offline experience and then has the choice of paying for online if they wish.
First they bring out DLC (means they don't have to finish making the game before they can sell it - plus it's a great way to charge for bug fixes). And of course DLC ain't transferable so if you sell on your game it's useless to you and the buyer has to buy it too.
Now they nobble their online play. It's Sony for now but they'll all do it.
How long before they start scamming us with "activation fees" or some other BS way to destroy the second hand market even more?
That's how the PC gaming market (with the odd exception like Egosoft) has worked for years... now that consoles are basically PCs (they have HDDs and connect to the internet) it's not entirely surprising that the consoles are coming in-line with the PC world of DRM.
There IS no second-hand market for PC games ... expect no different for consoles in the long run (though will they bring the price of console games down in-line with PC games - I doubt it).
Playstation are imposing this online pass system to all their published games.
Microsoft do not include online passes to their games. E.G Gears of War 3 recently released without a pass required.
People need to stop making out like they are being "double taxed" by Microsoft because of live + these passes, it is NOT microsoft who make you buy an online pass for certain games it's the publishers, EA are a prime example with their FIFA games.
To my knowledge no microsoft game requires an online pass to play.
XBox Live Subscription *is* the Pass.
See how many games you can play online without XBL. AFAIK none.
To add injury to insult almost all on-line multi-user games are hosted on your own XBox along with the cost of bandwidth to support the game. So MS do not even provide dedicated servers (except for GOW3).
MS offer a glorified matchmaking service and charge you a premium for the service. There is no alternative so no competition.
To make things worse XBL is user based not machine based.
So if four of your kids want to play (say) SF4 online then four separate live accounts need to be paid for.
Even though they can only play one at a time so there is no extra cost network or hardware wise.Even the Family pack is a mockery. XBL should be machine based.
e.g. 1 user x 1 hour per day : Cost $60 per year.
2 users x 30 minutes per day = 1 hour : Cost $120 per year.
Why the price differential given the same usage?
As for this ridiculous myth of covering the cost of Hosting that's a decision MS made. They could have easily allowed a PC Server model such as Quake/Unreal/HL Servers being hosted by whomever desired it when they desired it. Alternatively if the games are peer-hosted then a Server is not even necessary.
As a monopoly they can charge what they like on their own terms.
all Sony is actually saying is that the on-line play licence that it bundles with the initial purchase is nontransferable? I'm really struggling to understand all the righteous indignation about this. Seems a perfectly reasonable move to generate revenue, which is what Sony is all about, like any commercial operation. If you want to play on-line, buy the new game or the licence. If you don't want to buy the licence or cough for a new game, play it solo or over a local network.
people, you need to understand that you can't compare the 2nd hand games market to the 2nd hand car/furniture/electronics market. The reason being, with the 2nd hand car, you get a warn out item that have been used and can no longer compete with the new car. With the 2nd hand game/movie/music market, the item that you get 2nd hand can match the new item in every way except the price (* reminder, you are interested in the data and not the physical item).
and what makes the comparison of the 2 different market to be even more unfair is: you finish with cheap game, you never finish with the expensive car. There is always some use for the car, you never _finish_ with the car. On the other hand, you do _finish_ games. So while the car will stay with you for years, the game will be sold 2nd hand just two days after you have bought it!
to be honest, the only thing that I can see in the 2nd hand game world that can be compared to the 2nd hand car world is: the console! The games are cheap and have a point at which you no longer need it (you finished the game). The console on the other hand is expansive and no never finish with, there is always some new game to play on it!
The way I see it guys. If you buy the game with no intention of selling it on this won't affect you. Infact the ONLY way it will affect you is if you buy a second hand game. Personally I tend not todo such things so Sony can do what they like. It's not as if your paying to use the PSN to begin with or in any sort of legal binding with Sony that states "They must provide the service free forever'.
The solution is simple. To avoid this charge, don't buy second hand games. You and I both know that eventually Microsoft, Nintendo etc will all adopt the same stance (if they have not already).
2nd hand PC gaming is dying a death because the licences are locked online through kit like Steam, and there's NO way to get a new code/whatever for yourself. So you can't buy the game 2nd hand, ever. This online pass malarkey still sucks ass compared to previous consoles and games, but it's better than them going the PC route.
And haven't the X-box publishers been doing this for yonks?
only affect S0NY published Games, (like say Resistance 3, or in this case Uncharted 3 etc...), or indeed ALL FORTHCOMING TITLES FROM SCEx (J,A,E), including any and all Shovelware?
This could be the final Nail for me, PC Gaming is a FREAKING JOKE!, I can not properly spew my utter detest towards the entire FPS genre. Tiresome, boring, unimaginative, and just about everythings been done a million times over.
Whats left Racing Sims? That's fine I guess, but what to do when I want to play something from NIS (e.g. JRPGs) , supposing I wanted to try something more "Casual" what are my choices in the J'n'R Shpere on the PC? My Magic 8-Ball says no.....
So hopefully all this will do is to drive the Retailers to force quicker Price reductions, Cause there IS NO WAY IN HELL I'M PAYING 60€+ for the king of crap that's in my current line-up.
The only exception to that rule would have been Gran Turismo 5, A Game that convinced me to get a PS3, and a very expensive Wheel. I still need the even MORE EXPENSIVE Playseat though.
I Have sympathy with both sides, here.
Gamers are demanding more from their triple A games, forcing development costs to balloon - we've gone from 30 people teams running on a 18-24 month development cycle in the PS2/Gamecube era, up to 100+ Teams on 2-3 development cycles.
Yet the game titles have not gone up in price - most games have been selling at the £30-£40 new range since the SNES and Mega Drive days. They can't really push the new prices up any higher, without alienating the consumers.
Gamestop/Game/Gamestation have a very obvious 3 part business strategy, which massively compounds this problem;
- Push Pre-orders, to get as many full price day one sales as possible
- Give good trade in prices to new games to get back as many copies as possible while they're still in demand
- push the 2nd hand copies on buyers, as all profit goes to them, as opposed to publishers and developers getting a cut.
Only step one in that strategy benefits anyone but the retailer. some game stores see the same copy of an individual title a half dozen times in the launch months.
I'm in the fortunate position of being a 20-something with disposable income, and care enough about the games industry and developers to buy new whenever possible. I cannot begrudge any pocket money saving kid, hard pressed parent, or hard up adult for saving a bundle on a second hand copy, which they're told is functionally identical to a new one - it'll be fun to see how Game's 2nd hand slogan - "Everything's the same but the price" - fairs against this new direction.
Many of you are making analogies to to the second hand car or house market. While I take on board the general point, we are dealing with a mostly digital product, here - as long as the disk is not scratched, there is no degradation in the product you get; If you buy a car, you get it with an empty odometer, in pristine condition, with no scratches, dings, or crumbs in the drivers seat. New House, you get to specify the furnishings and fittings you want.
The only market I can think of with a like-for-like compassion is the 2nd Hand DVD market, and even then the studios can make a good portion of their production costs back in the cinema, beforehand.
I may not like it, but I can understand where Sony is coming from - they get to make some money from second hand sales, turning the online component into a service instead of a freebie (It would be more interesting and harder to justify if 1st Party Microsoft games started doing this, as they're already charging for Xbox live - as many have pointed out, 3rd party publishers, like EA, have been doing this with their games for a while on all platforms)
Until Digital Distribution really kicks off - to iTunes Levels - and we can cut the real bad guys in all this - Game & Co. - out of the equation, I don't see a nice way around this.
This is why these passes are introduced.
They are artificially introducing "dings","dents" and "scratches" to an electronic pristine product in order to make the product less attractive to buyers.
As mentioned this will result in less money flow all round.
To those that mention your single player game is not impacted , its worth bearing in mind that many games have only a token single player experience and are really designed to be played online. FPS's,Fighter's,Racers etc
I really don't have a problem with this and don't understand what the f*** people are complaining about, unless you buy a game where the online part of it is the be all and end all of the game play then it isn't worth paying full price to start with in the first place. It will kill off the second game market though. And lets face it, the game shops has only a very limited timeline left anyway. The days of buying games on a phyisical media is numbered. The next gen game machines (As is already happening on the PC side of things) will be through game stores... And the biggest thing that worries me is that you will buy for a full priced game on the respective console makers games stores at full retail price or RRP, which is still currently probably about a 30% mark up than you will pay in the shops! Thats from my console experience by the way... PC games are cheaper. It's a challenging environment for all concerned, the games developers are strangled by licensing costs from the hardware makers to start with and having wars between them doesn't help. What was PSN store selling FIFA 12 for... £55? I got it for £20 less and 2 days before it was released!?! I will pay a lot of money for some good games, but they need to be good, but you can't tell with reviews or even a demo. I kicked as in Bad Company 2, but I hate FPS games and would never have touched it until I got a try at it without having an online license.Ah well, I'm sure that twat Jobs had the answer to it all and held it back.