Retail Might Share Pre-Owned Revenues If Publishers Kick the Online Passes

Richard Walker

It's no secret that pre-owned sales make up a rather sizeable chunk of most games retailer's revenues, and 100% of said revenue goes to the retailers in question, rather than being divvied up between the hard-working devs and publishers behind the products themselves and the stores stocking the games on their shelves. However, it seems that there's a mutual compromise that could benefit both parties.

Several retail brands have declared that they'd be willing to cut publishers in on their pre-owned profits, providing they're willing to make certain concessions. "As a retail store we would happily share part of the sale from a used game if we get something in return," Gordon Crawford from indie retail chain Gamespod told MCV. "Perhaps new games at better prices and no more online codes."

Online Passes are currently used by THQ, EA, Ubisoft and others to recoup the revenues otherwise lost to pre-owned games sales, but HMV is a little cagey regarding Gamespod's proposal to share with the publishers. "We all know how the business model in the industry is changing. So if there is any merit in this idea then it may be worth looking into," said HMV in a statement.

"If you want to stop these one-time codes then yeah, fair enough, we'll share revenues. If publishers gave me a better deal, then maybe. The publishers are not the poor man here," Julian Slater from Bits and Pieces added.

Some retailers meanwhile, aren't necessarily convinced that the publishers will play ball when it comes to the proposal. "We'd definitely like to do this, but I don't see it being something publishers would implement," Chris Muckell from Xpress Games stated. "With new releases dropping in price after just the second week, I'd have thought their investments would be better in making money from DLC."

For the time being, and for better or worse, it looks like Online Pass schemes are here to stay then. That is until the publishers and retailers can come to some sort of agreement where pre-owned games are concerned, which might not happen anytime soon. Time will tell...

[Via OXM | Thanks, Mix]

  • Hate online passes. Especially when you buy a pre-owned game that you didn't know had a OP system...
  • Or perhaps people could stop focusing on money for half of a second and actually realize that there should be more to life.
  • Do it! Hate having to put in codes every time i buy a game.
  • i hope they kick it because i own battlefield 3 and it is a pain in the arse trying to play that online on two different consoles.
  • They claim they lose out on money, most of the time someone had to pay retail for it? So they lose nothing. In fact they gain extra money with online passes being bought. I truly believe that the money received from online passes goes towards their servers, if you get what I mean...
  • One problem about online passes I've run into and thought about is not being able to bring a game to a friend's house to show them the multiplayer and convince them to buy the game too. Developers should consider that. I guess I could just log into my gamertag on their console but I'd really rather not do that.
  • OP'S are so unfair. If i want to play fifa on my xbox with 2 diff gamertags i need two online passes !! WTF !!
  • @2 - Derp
  • Surely this will increase the cost of preowned and out way the individual cost of the online passes. I bought table tennis for 99P wonder how they would share that revenue? The fact would be it would not have been 99P with this agreement in place. As an example. As much as I, like everyone else. Doesn’t like paying more for things. I can appreciate why online passes exist and in the grand scheme of things should exist.
  • The little guy willing to give a cut to the big guy, and the big guy will still say, "Fek Aaf!" I agree with the better prices on new games. $60 is too much for 90% of the games out there. Only shitty part if something were to happen, (which it won't), will be used games sales will go up. Places like GameStop over charge for used games as it is. I buy used 70% of the time, and online passes doesn't stop me. That percentage will be going up this year.
  • That's something I always wondered. Why is content saved to the gamertag instead of the Xbox? If I have 2 profiles on one Xbox, why the hell should I have to buy the exact same piece of DLC or an online pass TWICE, just for me to play it more than once. I already bought the damn thing. Give me one good reason I should have to pay again to use it on the same goddamn Xbox.
  • Music to my ears... not the dropping of Online Passes (I love those things)but all these money grabbing fucks in the retail industry now saying they are willing to cut devs & publishers in... hmm they never entertained that idea whilst creaming in all the profits. Let them rot.
  • Online Passes are the Developers' way to remind us that they hate fun and the idea of anyone having it. #8 speaks the truth.
  • #6 They always (at least in my experience) give you a 2 day trial or whatever, though, so that point is null.
  • Fact is the developers and publishers make more than is justifiable already, but being typical greedy pricks they decided to screw everyone, from the retailers with these 'passes' to the customers by locking content on the disc which will only become available when you buy their overpriced 'DLC'.
  • I don't buy a cart from a 2nd hand car dealership and pay the car manufacturer extra money so I can use the power steering or the CD player.
  • @7 Totally agree, Just bought AC:R and my girl wanted to play it while I was at work on her own profile and guess what you cant.. Why do I have to pay more money to use my 1 game on my 2 xboxs on my 2 profiles that I pay for.. Its utter BS, I dont need 2 copys of a game for my 1 household thanks!
  • Online passes are a pain, but if retailers cut the devs in on some of the profit, they could turn around and sell "certified pre-owned" copies of the game that DOES come with an OP curtesy of the developer. The devs see some $ come back and the customer gets the online content; everybody wins.
  • Why dont the publishers reduce the price of the games on demand from XBL! That way a 3 month old game can be flogged legit straight from publishers (with M$ cut aswell) for the same price as pre owned games or cheaper seeing as its digital distribution!! There obviously not bothered about making it more affordable or they would do this now.
  • Definitely share profits. How is it fair that a dev has hundreds of people working 2+ years on a game just for it to be sold as new once and earn whatever little money when preowned games earn the game retailers a significant amount more. I always buy new, and I don't mind paying full price because I like supporting the good developers out there like Bungie and Bioware. Game retailers (especially EB Games here in AUS) are too greedy. Like how they add sell 1500 points for $30 when the RRP is $25. That's like buying and iTunes card and losing $5 just because the retailer wants to make something off of it.
  • I also think it would help if retailers agreed to only trade games in 4 or more months old.
  • Really! developers and publishers should profit when a store resells a game they created.Once the game has been sold it belongs to the customer when the customer sells the game to a resell shop it belongs to the resell shop WHY SHOULD THE DEVELOPERS AND PUBLISHERS GET ANYTHING!!!!! it's nothing more than greed and it should be illegal.
  • $60 for brand new games! Our Australian dollar is the same as the American dollar and we pay $100 for brand new games. I would love to pay $60 for brand new games.
  • this is second hand game retailers shitting themselves,they have realised that they are making huge undeserved profits on the second hand market, and whilst the online pass may have hurt them a little , that will be nothing compaired to day when publishers finally turn around and say ,"you know what, screw retailers we will make our game only available on the online market place" then all these retailers would wish thay hadnt been so greedy.
  • Actually for everyone who says they're not losing out because of the preowned game being a new game before which gave them money, they are losing out, especially if you see how many CoD are in CeX over here on the day of release, I'll say a big % of people who have CoD on Xbox Live, got it preowned, while maybe only 30% got it new? When you think of it, that 70% does mean the developers are losing out. These stats are not real, I'm just trying to prove an example to all you who say they're not losing out. But yea, this is a great idea and I think the developers should take it on, it is their invention after all and they should be entitled to earn some amount of money from preowned sales, it will really help some development companies who are good but don't get enough sales in order to bring out another game or even think of creating another game.
  • Gamers (including myself) are spoiled. Do people truly have any idea how much it actually costs to create, develop, publish, and advertise video games? You're talking tens of millions of dollars just to get a (barely) top-of-the-line game out there. I don't blame publishers wanting to get some money back from online passes. If a game isn't a AAA title like CoD, Halo, Gears, or Elder Scrolls, chances are they don't even make their money back from the cost of making the game! The retailers are the bad guys. I'd rather support game companies any day.
  • If developers would just make good games to start with, there wouldn't be so many pre-owned copies for them to "lose money on."
  • @27 yeah i totally agree, game retailers are essentially just brokers/middle men and they are a dying breed .
  • Really really really hate online passes.
  • @2 it's kind of hard to when everything costs .. And your constantly watching your wallet
  • Do car companies get a cut of used car sale profits?What's the difference with games?Maybe they shouldn't make the games thinking they will sell the same copy multiple times and make a profit every time,doesn't work like that,greedy fuckers.
  • Although this will never work, I really like the idea. Everybody wins.
  • Using the Devs logic, libraries should be outlawed. Does an auto manufacturer get a kickback on every used car sold? Does the carpenter make $$$ every time a house is resold? Do thrift shops have to pay clothing makers when a sweater is sold? Resale shops have been around since things started being sold. Are you going to try to close down Ebay as well? And all sites where things can be bought directly from the previous owner? What about sites where people trade items? How much does the developer get then? Garage sales? Swap shops? Friends trading games? The big question is: If the poor developers are so impoverished, how are they able to afford this massive PR campaign to convince the gaming world that they're broke?
  • #27 yeah it does cost millions to make games but when publishers release games like CoD that made 500 million n 5 days then I dont think theyre losing out at all
  • @32 no but car companies make money from parts and servicing etc. I went into a HMV the other day to buy a game , they were only selling used copies and in some cases for as much £38.Obviously something needs to change otherwise online passes will just grow ,and that hits us the consumers the most
  • I personally think its not all to with second hand profit, I think its down to the amount of pirate games out there( look at the list that was produced the other day)if there not getting the revenue from these guys but they want to play online at least they are getting abit of that loss back!
  • Ah news posts and broke ass kids making ignorant comments. This is a great idea. More revenue on games that aren't COD, Battlefield, Gears, Halo etc is a good thing. Developers use sales to determine if a sequel or similar type of game is worth investing in. Getting even a small portion of the used sales would help keep the market from being saturated with shooters. I'd love to see a Beyond Good and Evil 2. But the first had low sales. I agree that the pricing structure for games needs to be modified and the way an online pass works for a family needs to be more accessible too. But these developers deserve to be paid for their hard work and creativity. More money to developers = more games.
  • @ # 32; Cars suffer wear & tear through miles travelled & exposure to weather & people who use them. They degrade. If I buy a second hand BMW for 70% the price of a new one, it will not be identical to a new one; a second hand video game is identical to a brand new one. This is the difference you were enquiring about. Next.
  • Y do people think the huge publishing companies are so in need of money??? They make outrageous amounts everyday. I could careless what they work out just get rid of the damn OPs.
  • Some of the fault has to lie with places like Game that give you a pittance when you trade a title in , and then sell it at a massive mark up.
  • @2 looks like the truth offends some people. Lets be honest the season pass is pure greed. Only the gaming industry would look at why people are buying 2nd hand games (because they are cheaper alternatives Doh!) and come up with a solution to penalise gamers rather than think hang on maybe we are charging too much for our product or how can we ease the strain in these difficult financial times. @27 Really ?? If it was such a thankless task why do they do it, for the love ? I think not.
  • Just hardcode the games to play only on the console/PC and account they're first played with. Problem solved. And maybe charge a bit for that too.
  • I might be mistaken here since I don't own all of these games but aren't MW 1-3 all playable without codes of any kind? I know Grand Theft Auto IV is. Gears 1-3. All of the Halo games. They could potentially rake in millions more per title by selling online passes for used copies but they choose not to. That's why I avoid anything that EA puts out. They're the leader in this. So they can be my small part of making a stand. I used to buy six or more new EA sports games per year. Now I buy none. At least no new titles. Now I wait until a month before the new release and buy last years for 75 percent off and just play against the computer or local friends. So I don't get to play Madden against a 14 year old that calls me names the whole game because I don't have ten hours a day to practice even though he has probably never actually thrown a real football. Big deal. I'm in my 30's. I grew up playing these games against other people sitting six feet away and I can be happy doing that still if it means not getting robbbed by greedy developers. There are hundreds of other products I can buy used and none of the companies that make them charge me extra to use them for their intended purposes. If I buy a used car Chevy doesn't demand an extra hundred dollars for access to the passenger seat. Charge us sixty dollars for the whole game and make them as good as possible and the money will come. Feel free to put out as much DLC as you want. Then you get both the new and used customers money if they decide to purchase it. Be cool and let every account on a console use the DLC. I don't care if I can't use it on another console. That's understandable. It's a compromise. Play ball with us and we'll keep buying your products. Nickel and dime us and watch the customers scatter.
  • think about it people want you to play the game they spent years makeing but want to get paid for makeing them the online passes are stupid but without them with no new copies being sold they dont make anything if an arrangment like that would happen everone would win in a way but what if the developers got to choose used retail prices?
  • #25, #26, and #27 get it perfect +1 If the companies make so much money from games how come quite a few developers get closed down? You don't like OPs? fine but considering the alternatives they could do instead i think its the best option. There has been talk of removing other features instead of the online MP, and there was talk a few year ago of locking games to a console so they couldn't be resold at all. Personally im fine with the online pass
  • @16 If you buy a used car no you won't pay the manufacturer anything BUT you also wouldn't get things like 1 year free onstar or 1 year free satellite radio. Sure things you may not need to drive your car but little things the original owner had. You don't NEED online play to play the used game, but if you want to play online you need to buy it. I don't have a problem with the online pass for sports games. The sales figures for those is low enough and it is segmented enough that it makes sense. (Though Madden and FIfa have been making a mint with the online cards... even if some of it is from stolen accounts)... What I do not like is when high selling games like Battlefield 3 require an online play code. On Saints Row 3 it makes sense... it doesn't sell 3+ million copies. On the main topic, I can't see US retailers like EB Games or even GoHastings doing this at all. At the end of the day the $10 that EBGames lowers the price on used games with codes ($44.99 vs $54.99 on release) is lower than the percentage it'd likely have to give a publisher.
  • @1 What's worse is when you buy a game expecting the pass, and they don't add it (Rayman Origins did this to me. I thought I was getting more UPlay points!). But that's probably mostly personal stupidity. Yes, if this sort of agreement could be reached, that would be hands-down amazing. We want cheap prices and "full" games, and the devs deserve money, no matter how we buy their product. If publishers could be coerced into this, I see no down side, either way.
  • THQ uses op's for system link! I call BS.
  • Over this situation I say screw the developers. Games cost enough brand new, why would they deserve pre-owned revenue as well. Car company's or building contracter's don't get a cut from future sales of cars or houses and Metallica don't get money to splashout on lavish pools with any old album of theirs selling on ebay or whatever. Online passes blow and should be scrapped, not just the damage they do to the pre-owned market (currently its cheaper to buy BF3 new than pre-owned+EA pass). I've also read countless stories here on 360a of families with multiple 360 playing members needing to spend stupid amounts just so they can all play the same game on the same disc and same 360 with their own profiles.
  • @2 More to life than money? Let us know when you decide to join us in the real world.
  • why dont you just not buy preowned games? ive never bought one, and their only a few pounds more if you buy them new?
  • @39,oh ok,so if i buy a brand new BMW then drive it for a couple of miles and decide i dont want it and trade it in then the manufacturer can have a cut of the selling on value because its not that used?Maybe i should of used dvd's as an example because i dont think the film makers get any profit from second hand either.
  • The logic doesn't work. A used car doesn't provide a specific service that costs them money. The publishers/developers have to host servers that they pay upkeep for so that the players who purchased the game may use them. If they do not wish to host someone because they did not purchase the game in a way profitable to the company, the reserve that right. It's a simple as that.
  • @50 You do realize the developers do not make as much money as the publishers right?
  • @2. Funny talk about real life coming from someone who 1)who is doing so on an achievement website and 2) has over 100k gamerscore. Anyone saying screw the developers clearly don't like games...I know I can't make the games...I doubt many here do. If the developers lose out, so do we. More CoD clones and worse games will be made. And while the occasional Indie dev strikes it rich with an amazing game, I must admit I didn't buy a 360 for arcade games. @44. Perfect way to put it.
  • @2. Funny talk about real life coming from someone who 1)who is doing so on an achievement website and 2) has over 100k gamerscore. Anyone saying screw the developers clearly don't like games...I know I can't make the games...I doubt many here do. If the developers lose out, so do we. More CoD clones and worse games will be made. And while the occasional Indie dev strikes it rich with an amazing game, I must admit I didn't buy a 360 for arcade games. @44. Perfect way to put it.
  • I never buy used games and im fine with onlines passes. The publishers should be getting money for thier games and i refuse to buy used games.
  • @11 Isnt it saved to all gamertags that exsist on the console at the time of downloading? Or did they change that as some point in the last few years to squeeze money from people?
  • @59 No they didn't. I got Battlefield 3 when this account was suspended and redeemed my code on my dummy 1-month account and did not have to redeem another code to play on Ashes in Fall
  • @39 Everything is priced based on demand. That BMW's price will depend on what model and what year. Wear and tear isn't the only thing going into the price. Bad games aren't in demand, so you can find them in a bin for $5. No one complains about this. That's the same game it was before. Microsoft itself sells games on demand for cheaper than when they were new. Are they selling less of a game? No! It's been years since it was released, so the demand has gone down, and so does the price. This isn't rocket science. This is the used sales market for every single product out there. Just because game turnover is so high doesn't make a difference. What developers and publishers should take away from so many copies getting sold is that the idea of that game doesn't have a big enough audience to warrant a second game. It works both ways. If I buy a game new and thought it wasn't worth the money, which is my right as a consumer, I won't buy the next game new. I'll get it used where I personally believe it's worth my money. If I buy a game in a bin and find out it's a diamond in the rough, if there's a second game I'll get it new, because that's what I think it's worth.
  • Online passes are fine. I buy 99% of my games new, and that won't ever change. The only people who honestly care about the online passes are the cheap and the poor. Hell, simply shutting down Gamefly would probably be enough to remove online passes. Don't blame piracy....piracy for console games is so low that it doesn't even factor in compared to used game sales/rentals. NOT EVEN CLOSE. And on the rare occassion I do buy used games (normally as duplicate copies for boosting or a game that I just didn't feel warranted a day one buy), I have no issue giving the developers a measly $10. You cry babies need to get over the $10 online pass. Those of you complaining about it are the reason it was created in the first place, because you buy/rent used games. Stop spending $400 on the latest phone to look cool, and instead buy something that functions perfectly well at $70 and there's your online pass money. Or stop eating out 5 nights a week. Plenty of ways to scrounge up $10, I mean seriously.....a minimum wage worker almost makes that in 1 hour of work >_> Jesus don't complain about paying for xbox live, which gives Microsoft money for you to play online. What's wrong with giving a developer $10 to play their $60 games that you were too cheap to buy? Sure, some games aren't worth $60. Fair enough. But when you buy it used, you should factor the $10 cost into your purchase. If the game is worth $20 to you, don't buy it for more than $10 knowing you'll be spending $10 more. Stop being spoiled little bitches who think they are entitled to every little piece of content for a game for whatever damn price you feel like paying. Welcome to Earth mother ******s.
  • @15, fact of the matter is, they made the game. They can choose what price to sell it at. They are entitled to every penny. Retailers are being exceptionally greedy with the pre-owned market. we may not like it but its how it does and should work. It like using the excuse that music artists are rich enough so therefore you shouldnt have to pay for their music.
  • Ok BBowles that's being ignorant. I have a house, and bills, and college loans, and a dog, and a fiance, and a car. Don't assume people who buy used are kids who just don't wanna spend money. I have other obligations that eat up a lot of money. Gaming is a hobby of mine. I like to play games. Back in the day, people made games because they wanted people to play them. Now it's all about money. I can't afford to buy every game I want new. That doesn't make me poor. It makes me responsible to put my other obligations first. I buy what I can afford. If i can afford Gamefly, so I can play a whole bunch of games for less that buying new, then so be it. I just don't play the multiplayer. I don't give a crap about multiplayer. But when I can't play some modes split screen because the developer decided that's not allowed, that's greedy. You can't play the Battlefield 3 coop missions split screen, only on Xbox Live, and only with the online pass. There's no reason for that. The whole reason I started Gamefly was because of online passes. Do everyone a favor and stop belittling people for doing what they can afford. We all have a right to have fun and spend our money on what we want.
  • @54 I'm not exactly sure of how the server situation works but from reading articles about EA shutting down theirs I believe Microsoft runs most of the servers. EA chooses to run their own. And if I remember correctly, each developer pays Microsoft a fee when their game is published to have them run the servers. Again, I may be wrong but if I am I believe things run pretty similar to that. Now EA running their own servers then creates a better example of how people are getting screwed here. The first Gears of War has been out for several years now. Yet you can still play multiplayer on it. And that option is included in the purchase price of the game. But if I were to buy a used copy of Madden '11 right now and add on an online pass, chances are I would only be able to play online for around six more months before they end up taking those servers down. Maybe longer but eventually it's going to happen and it won't be too long from now. So why should EA get $70 (or more)from one copy of a game used by multiple people when they are going to remove that option only to force their customers to come up with more money for their latest edition with minor tweaks? I'm sure there are older games out there that have changed hands ten or more times. Using Gears as an example again, a copy bought on day one might have sold four or five online passes if Epic chose to screw people over. That one copy could have generated more than $100 in revenue. That would surely justify keeping the servers on for years to come. But EA has to shut them down after two years after making $70 or $80 off of many of the copies of their games? I gladly bought the Gears 3 season pass because I knew that I was getting a game that would be supported for years. I pre-ordered my copy so I was $90 in on that game and I never felt ripped off. They gave us the option to buy a bunch of weapon skins that I thought were overpriced so I decided to pass. I'd gladly drop another $30 if they announced a season 2 pass with four more pieces of DLC. We as gamers bought into this generation of systems with the expectation that many top games would have online multiplayer included. Take away something as vital as that from a game for any reason and you risk losing a big chunk of audience. One last thing, if EA wants to save money maybe they should consider changing the name of some of their games. I'm old enough to remember the original Madden football and it was a big deal back then to have John Madden commentating and on the box. Now nobody cares. He's not on the box anymore. He's not in the game anymore. Why keep paying him to use his name? I'm sure it's not cheap. Same goes for Tiger Woods. EA used to have PGA golf. Then Tiger started winning and now they have to fork over bags of cash every year to have his minimal involvement in the game. That guy certainly is no role model. And he ceratinly isn't a top athlete in his sport anymore. If EA wants my business back next year they can sell me NFL Football '13 and PGA Golf '13 without their famous names attached, drop the online pass program, and announce that all servers will be up for at least three years from the release date of these games. Do that or some variation on it and they'll get my $120. Add on some interesting DLC and they can have more of my money. But if they keep screwing over customers I'll still buy those two games next year but Gamestop or one of the local used shops can have my $30 and I'll make do without multiplayer.
  • @64 All of those things are YOUR CHOICE of lifestyle. If you can't afford a hobby, that's not my fault or the developer's faults, and it sure as hell doesn't entitle you to more than you can afford. Co-op just isn't a part of some games anymore, at least not split-screen. This takes extra programming which quite frankly isn't necessary as its a dying part of gaming that a vast minority actually use. Thanks to the internet, there is no need to local co-op. I don't belittle people for what they can afford. I belittle people who think that the developer's should give them MORE than they can afford by bitching about online passes and such. There's a huge difference. If you can only afford 2 new games a year, then I feel for you and I wish you more fortune. But don't think that you're entitled to 4 games, and that the developers are "ripping you off" like most of the bitching in this comment section.
  •'re right. You're entitled to have fun and spend money on what you want. But the developer's are entitled to charge whatever they want for something they made. The argument works both ways. My rant was not aimed at people who can only afford so many games or use Gamefly. It's aimed at people who can only afford so many games or use Gamefly AND THEN bitch because they don't get access to as much as the people who pay more.
  • I agree with #2 don't see why people thumbed him down
  • @ #7 - why would wantneed two gamertags? Isn't one enough?
  • BBowles, that's not true. Since when is it ok to charge more for less content? Games had all of that stuff before. Who the hell assumed no one wants split screen anymore? Not everyone is anti social and wants to see with a headset on and hope the internet doesn't lag. Sometimes I want to play with a friend on my couch. My problem is, now they're charging more for less content. And it's not the price that bothers me, it's the idea. I'm one of those people who really does think there's more to life than money. Here's a scenario. I go to a game store to buy Battlefield new, with an online pass. They don't have any, they're all sold out. They do have a used one for $55. If I want to play that game, I have to spend more than when it was new just to get all the content. It didn't used to be like that. This is just another way for companies to get more money out of sheep who just do as they're told.
  • Go to a different store? Wait a few days for new inventory? Nothing is forcing you to buy it right then and there. Buying a used game for $5 off retail is pointless =/ especially if you know it contains an online pass. Besides, isn't this what pre-orders are for? So you don't show up and find out they are sold out? I guess a "sheep who does as its told" would buy this and get ripped off....that's their problem. Charging more for less content is a developer by developer argument. Some games, like Rage, have very little content and should cost $30 new at most. Others, like Skyrim, would cost $120 on that scale just because there is so much content. There is a standard price for a reason, and it works both ways. Sometimes you get more than you pay for, sometimes you get less. This is what reviews are for, and there are more than enough to let you know how much content you can expect from a title. There is much more to life than money, no doubt. I'm not some greedy little shit. No one assumed that nobody uses split-screen co-op anymore. It is, however, a dying trend in gamers due to xbox live. It is, there's no arguing that. I remember plenty of LAN parties back in high school, but we haven't had one in years now thanks to the ease and convenience of the internet. Split-screen co-op just isn't that popular anymore, kind of like rpgs that make you replay entire dungeons should you die on the boss fight. Sad, but true.
  • BBowles. But that's my point. Why should I have to inconvenience myself by going to another store or waiting a few more days? Maybe I didn't have money to pre order, but a week or two after release I have it. Developers should want you go to get their game and play it. They're assuming a lot and asking a lot, and not really giving anything more in return, in fact they're giving less.
  • Because life's not fair? Some things are going to be an inconvenience in life. No way around it. Developers are a business, they always have been, even on NES and before. They don't give away their games, and never have (obviously a few exceptions exist). But at the end of the day, they are a business out to make money. A lot of them truly do want to give gamers an enjoyable experience, but doing so at the cost of losing money just isn't an option. I've very rarely felt cheated by a company. Rage and Dante's Inferno are the only retail games that come to mind. I enjoyed both, but man they were short.
  • I can honestly see online passes staying. Not that I want too. I've been buying used games for ages. Only Skyrim and EDF:IA were new purchases in my 12 months of owning my 360. Lucky that when I got Gears 2 and Alan Wake they still had dlc codes. But, I think that even these free dlc codes will become a thing of the past too soon, as Devs will look at stopping this to make even more revenue.
  • Let's agree to disagree I guess lol. I understand where you are coming from, but 99% of the people complaining about online passes aren't in the same boat as you. They're just whining. This is distracting me, as I'm currently watching tv, boosting Gears 3, and playing FFXI on my pc split-screen to this window. I need to concentrate more on those 3 things. You sir, make much more sense than most people with a hate for these passes, so respect for that. I still disagree, but I see your point. If the majority of people complaining were actually in-line with your thoughts, I'd have no issue here. Have a good day sir, and I wish you great fortune.
  • BBowles. You're right. Life isn't fair. Which is what developers, and in my opinion publisher even more, need to learn. Ok maybe it's not fair someone thought your game was crap so they sold it. That's their right. Why is it that the game industry thinks they're above used sales? Every other industry deals with it. Plus gaming is more popular now than ever before. I just don't see the point. People who will pay that fee were already buying new. And all you're going to accomplish is alienate people who are on the fence. I haven't seen any information from these companies that these passes are boosting their sales either.
  • It'll just make used copies cost more for customers.
  • If only there was a way u could send money straight to the devs and nothing 2 the publishers, would be a perfect world.
  • lmao at #2. Have fun living in your parents' basement for the rest of your life.
  • I think what annoys me more about Online Passes is that it just kills the Online Community way too fast. Mortal Kombat has a fight pass and there's literally only one 100 people room. The rest are super small room from friends. That's Fighting Game of the Year 2011 people. SSIV doesn't have OP, and it's life is still at large. They'll come a point where someone purchases an Online Pass only to see the community completely dead. (ie: Homefront) It's such an unnecessary gamble just to see if you can have the privileges of the Multiplayer feature. Some games I don't buy day one, why? Because University costs way too much to be purchasing some games at first retail price. Thankfully I saw some games drop all the way to $31 NEW, I was so tempted to pick up Warhammer but I couldn't. TL;DR - Online Passes are too much of a gamble and it simply hurts everyone, except EA cause those tyrants are too powerful. But for others, they simply injure their Online Community by restricting those with the VIP pass to play.
  • op + used game= savings compared to 60$. i'll buy that new in a year or two now instead of playing it now.
  • I don't get why HMV are bothered - Do they actually sell pre-owned titles? Oh, then again, people buying pre-owned again would obviously affect the numbers buying the games new from HMV. Silly me :L Although, just for a moment people, the 'Season' pass, and 'Online' pass, are two completely different things. It's not a big deal, but knowing the difference can easily avoid confusion in posts... ie, saw a post the other day saying the season pass should be made either 'cheaper or preferably be completely abolished'. That sentence kind of defeats itself.
  • considering that retailers are losing money on this too. i'd say this would be the best way to do it. no one wants to put out for the pass. which brings the total to about 5-10.00 less of the new game.
  • This won't ever happen. It doesn't happen with used Cd's, movies, books, and it won't happen with video games. Plus, anyone gullible enough to believe in such a crock theory of game prices coming down because of publishers/developers getting a cut from used sales is crazy. Expansion packs and downloadable games are not cheaper in DLC form even though years back companies were stating that getting rid of the physical copy will lower expenses which will in turn lower game prices. Just recently instruction manuals in game cases were slimmed down to about 2 pages. This same theory of saving money for company and consumer was used. The theory was used about advertising in video games too. Inflation has been stagnant for sometime in the US, yet game prices rise even though expenses are cut. The facts are that prices for DLC, OP, and even physical copy will rise not fall. I'm sure games will even go up another $10 for next generation just like they did before.
  • Perhaps they could have an exclusivity period like the cinema/dvd scheme and just not sell preowned games for the first 3 months after a games release.
  • Hopefully this is a step in the right direction but I'm not keeping my hopes up.
  • It's funny that some of you support the Season Pass but not the Online Pass system. Gears of War has all of it's characters and weapon skins unlockable through the season pass on disc as well as the first DLC.
  • @11 ive found that as long as the profile with the dlc/arcade game is signed in you can use a second controller and sign in as another profile the second profile can still play it.
  • /rantbegin I totally agree with the posters who've mentioned less content for more money. I live in a sharehouse where 3 of us are gamers, nowadays that means 3 xbox 360s, 3 tvs, 3 headsets, 3 LIVE subscriptions and 3 copies of most games, so we, the house can play together. God forbid if our wireless broadband isn't cooperating, or one of us can't connect to LIVE, most games have no options for the 3 of us to play on one console together, in the same room, anymore... Let's look at the Halo games for an example - halo 3 allowed 4-player couch co-op split-screen online; only 1 copy required, halo:ODST cut that back to only 2-player split-screen couch co-op and 2-player online, so we needed to have 2 copies for the 3 of us, and halo:reach continued the trend; again we needed to buy 2 copies to play as a house. At least Halo still allows 2-player splitscreen, it's one of the better ones these days. To play Dead Island, Borderlands, COD, MOH, or most of the newest games, we require a copy each. That's 3 games we need to buy to play together in 1 house, not to mention DLC the 3 of us need to play extra maps/content (thank God for ondisc DLC in the GOTY/Complete editions). Yet these (mostly) multimillionaire companies dare to complain about "awww poor us - we lose money on resales, so we have to find more ways to nickel & dime our customers for every little bit of product we possibly can". And I've still got a whole 'nother rant about the growing trend of: DLC-which-is-just-unlocking-content-already-on-the-retail-disc thing too many companies are also buying into. (I'm looking at you extra costume and weapon sellers!) /endrant
  • The amount of ignorance in this topic is fucking shameful. The stupid children claiming devs and pubs are being greedy for wanting to be paid for their hard work need to shut the fuck up until you're out of mommy and daddy's house and have to support yourself. Any adult should appreciate being compensated for their work, and if you think developers and publishers should be any different you've got some rude awakenings coming. Sure there are things that people in tue gaming industry do that are greedy but online passes are not one of them. Grow the fuck up.
  • @16 It's not the same thing, the car is titled to you meaning you own that vehicle. When you buy a game you're buying a playable COPY of that game, not the digital rights to the game.
  • @90 what an incredible statement to start your rant with, which you then follow up with the most arrogant rant on this subject you hypocrite. For the record I think Online passes are a rip off and I'm 44. Basically it unlocks content that 12 months ago would have been included with the game on release, the fact it is unlockable content on the frigging disc shows that. Give me one example of a developer or publisher who justifies the cost of their games and did not post huge profits in their end of year accounts and I will indeed shut the fuck up, it's business they are out to make as much money as possible, but what they need to realise is the tide is turning and everyone is affected by the recession. Should the publishers/developers be entitled to a share of the sell on revenue, I would say yes they are, afterall those selling trade-ins still use the same advertising and marketing that was used for the game on release. I object to the fact that because the developers feels so strongly about it they pass it on to the consumer and not the attention of their upset, the trade in companies. Trade-in companies also need to realise that it they cut off the root of their revenue their own industry will die as well. As for the developers that have gone under, there are so many examples of them biting off more than they could chew and been totally mismanaged it is hardly a surprise they didn't survive.
  • #84 - "The facts are that prices for DLC, OP, and even physical copy will rise not fall. I'm sure games will even go up another $10 for next generation just like they did before." I'm not sure about that. I think that every geneartion of games between NES and Playstation 2 were generally $50 for new releases. In the late 80's that was a pretty nice chunk of change you had to pay for one game and there weren't many options to find bargains. When they increased the price to $60 for the current generation I remember having a few reactions. First I had the kneejerk reaction of feeling like I was getting gouged for an extra ten bucks. But after a few minutes of thinking about it I couldn't really believe that the price held steady for as long as it did over several generations of consoles. The other reaction I had was thinking that it would be impossible to find any good deals on games now that they were 60 bucks on the day they were released. Boy was I wrong. Games almost always used to be full price for months or even years no matter what. Now all you have to do is wait a month and somebody will have almost any new game for $40 or less. Back closer to the original topic though. I saw one comment on here that mentioned the online pass being used to cover the cost of keeping the servers up. That's not true. When one of these games is sold with an online code, the original owner has established a slot on the server. If that owner never sells the game they have the right to keep playing online as long as the servers are running. When that copy is sold to somebody else that original owner is vacating their slot on the server and somebody else is taking their place. If one copy of a game sells six times it doesn't mean that there are going to be six different people using the servers. It's always going to be one game copy equaling one server slot. If anything it means a company like EA should be keeping their servers on that much longer since they are getting online pass revenue on top of the original purchase revenue. But EA closes their servers faster than anybody else. There weren't any of these issues for the first three or four years of this generation of systems. It's nothing about server costs or anything else. It's strictly because EA and a few others saw that Gamestop was successful and they think they're entitled to get their beaks wet on that too. They are not. The music industry went through the same thing when CDs became poopular. Record labels thought they deserved some of the profits from used sales. The courts disagreed. That set the precedent and that's why game developers will never win in court if they would try to sue for a percentage of used game sales. Any developer who is concerned with used sales should just put new content in with every new copy sold. Then offer that content as DLC for 800 MSP. That accomplishes the same thing as online passes without looking like a company trying to shake us down for our last dollar.
  • @90 First off, I'm a full grown adult. Secondly, yes people should be compensated for doing their work. If they do more, they should get paid more. But, tell me what job you've ever worked in where you can do the same thing and get paid more money. Typically when you get a raise, you have more responsibilities. These devs are giving us the same games (less in fact if you read post 89) and expect us to pay more for it. My argument has always been, if you're game is good enough, the vast majority of people will not want to wait the necessary months to wait for the price to come down in used sales and they will buy new. If your game sucks, people will sell it as people will buy it used. I've never heard such whining about losing money on crappy products. I haven't heard Valve complaining like this. They release a game every 5 years is seems like, you don't hear them complaining about losing money. Typically because people will buy their games new because they're pretty fun and last a long time.
  • This doesn't affect me a whole lot, except for the fact that I recently rented WWE '12 for XBOX 360, I have all but 5 achievements 3 of which involve doing different things online. Now of course the copy I rented had an online code with it but the code had already been uesd so I had to use the free trial to play online & of course the achievements couldn't be done within the free trial, so if I want to get those 3 achievements I eighter have to buy a new copy of the game for $60 or buy it used for like $50 and then spend an additional $10 to get the online access. So if you ask me it's the same difference price wise so why not buy a new copy that has never been opened or used as opposed to a copy that maybe damaged and not play right.
  • the only reason bioware are putting multiplayer coop into mass effect 3 is so they can throw an online pass in, its getting ridiculous
  • All "pre-owned" games were bought full price by somebody originally so the publishers arent losing money, if they dumped OP (which nobody buys anyway), they could make more money..if they really want to make more money be more careful about some of the crap projects you waste money on.
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