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Published on November 12th, 2008 | by Deejay Knight, Editor/Founder

Want to Solve the Used Game Dilemma? Here's How to Do It.

Wow. Just wow. Every time I get more hyped about where the game industry is headed, I read something that makes me sick to my stomach. For every NXE announcement, there’s a negative digital distribution article. For every celebration, there are articles like these to remind us of what the power players in the industry are thinking behind closed doors.

The latest of these articles is from videogaming247, where Mike Capps, President of Epic Games, mentions how big a problem the used game market is in the United States – and the lengths in which some developers are considering to curb the used game dilemma. Here’s an excerpt of what those developers were suggesting:

I’ve talked to some developers who are saying ‘If you want to fight the final boss you go online and pay USD $20, but if you bought the retail version you got it for free’. We don’t make any money when someone rents it, and we don’t make any money when someone buys it used – way more than twice as many people played Gears than bought it.”

Having read the paragraph many times, there’s either two possibilities here:

  1. Mike only brought this up to gauge gamers’ reactions toward this concept. Needless to say, we are not pleased.
  2. Some developers are really considering this to be an option.

If I honestly believed the first option to be true, you wouldn’t be reading this right now. Of course, this brings about questions. What happens if users don’t have broadband internet? What happens if someone rents a game for $7 – are they then expected to spend another $20 to finish the game?

The idea of that is ridiculous, and would cause a collapse of the industry worse than the crash of 1983 if adopted across the board. Let me say this again:

If this policy of charging to finish the game is adopted across the board, you will kill the industry.

Of that, there is no doubt in my mind. This isn’t idle chat or speculation, this will hurt the industry more than help it. Before you say it, I’ll beat you to the punch: Yes, I know this was speculation on the part of developers, but the fact remains that a bit of change couldn’t hurt.

There’s more than meets the eye though, so click “Page 2” to read more.

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About the Author

Deejay has been a gamer since the Atari 2600, has wrestled–and defeated–alligators with only his toes, and once aligned all the planets in the Solar System by uttering the words "Coo Coo Ka-Choo". In his sleep. He currently bides his time behind the scenes here at, streaming at and teaching.

50 Responses to Want to Solve the Used Game Dilemma? Here's How to Do It.

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