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Xbox One Pre-Owned Reports: Microsoft & Publishers Get A Cut, Activation Fee Around £35

Author:
Jonathan Lester
Category:
News
Tags:
Microsoft, Pre-owned games, Report, Rumours, UK retail, Used games, Xbox One

Xbox One Pre-Owned Reports: Microsoft & Publishers Get A Cut, Activation Fee Around £35

More Grist For The Rumour Mill

The Xbox One reveal event didn't manage to clear up many of the rumours we've been debating for months (and in fact made many more unclear), but Microsoft's strategy surrounding pre-owned games may be getting slightly less hazy. According to two new reports, Microsoft and game publishers will be guaranteed a cut from pre-owned retailers, but the activation fee for secondary licenses will cost the best part of £40.

First up: Consoledeals, who have reportedly gotten an update from a senior source at a major UK retailer. They purport that retailers will be forced to sell used games at a paltry 10% discount on the original RRP, while unlocking additional licenses for other accounts will cost in the region of £35. If true, this will create a fundamental shift in used game pricing, and  probably make Xbox One titles much more attractive to buy new since the massive gulf between used and new games will no longer exist.

MCV also claims that stockists have been thoroughly briefed on the pre-owned situation, and will need to give a cut of each sale back to Microsoft and the game's publisher. Apparently participating retailers will have to run Microsoft's Azure framework, with games registering as 'traded in' and subsequently wiped from the user's account when handed over.

Microsoft offered up the following statement on the matter: " We know there is some confusion around used games on Xbox One and wanted to provide a bit of clarification on exactly what we’ve confirmed.

“While there have been many potential scenarios discussed, we have only confirmed that we designed Xbox One to enable our customers to trade in and resell games at retail. Beyond that, we have not confirmed any specific scenarios. Another piece of clarification around playing games at a friend’s house – should you choose to play your game at your friend’s house, there is no fee to play that game while you are signed in to your profile."

Note that both of these reports are source-based and unverified. I genuinely thought that we could stop dealing with reports and rumours  by now, but hey, all publicity is good publicity for Microsoft... right? We'll naturally let you know when firm details are forthcoming.

Add a comment12 comments
Xbax  May. 24, 2013 at 16:03

Can we please just stop with the rumours. Absolutely no point to them; besides attracting clicks. Just wait for the official word.

socialjeebus  May. 24, 2013 at 16:33

If there's even a grain of truth in this, it'll be a game changer on two fronts.

Firstly, there's the Anti-trust aspect - something with which the EU have battered MS with before.

Secondly, combine this with the fact that some of the touted features don't have an ETA for the UK means that the PS4 becomes even more attractive (and there's the reports that the PS4 is considerably more powerful than the Xbox One).

slimy31  May. 24, 2013 at 16:35

So at the moment used games stay below the price of new games. If they fix the price of used games with this 'activation fee', it means that either new games will quickly become cheaper than used, or worse still new games won't get discounted at all. Personally I've enjoyed being six months behind the times with my 360, and never needing to pay more than £15 per game.

Last edited by slimy31, May. 24, 2013 at 16:36
Late  May. 24, 2013 at 16:53

Personally I've enjoyed being six months behind the times with my 360, and never needing to pay more than £15 per game.

Ditto (aside from the odd exception where I just couldn't wait. I'm looking at you, Bioshock Infinite...)

In an ideal world new game prices should definitely drop if next gen consoles are to follow a similar model to pc games (i.e. single machine activation). "Should" is the operative word, though.
Microsoft's non-resale games next gen really shouldn't be significantly more expensive than games on Steam. Bet they are, though. Which is why steambox is looking like a viable option.

CaptainWaReZ  May. 24, 2013 at 17:07

PS4.......GAME SET AND MATCH!

JonLester  May. 24, 2013 at 17:11

@xbax: I included the latest statement from Microsoft in the post, and we'll clarify the situation as soon as MS are ready to talk specifics.

Breadster  May. 24, 2013 at 18:05

Assuming the PS4 doesn't have a similar system it just seems ridiculous to do something like this. I only own a 360, I was never particularly interested in the PS3 (or at least not enough of the games to warrant buying a second console) but at the moment the only thing I see as a plus point for the xbox one over the PS4 is the controller, which certainly can't be the deciding factor on its own.

socialjeebus  May. 25, 2013 at 02:49

Personally I've enjoyed being six months behind the times with my 360, and never needing to pay more than £15 per game.

Ditto (aside from the odd exception where I just couldn't wait. I'm looking at you, Bioshock Infinite...)

In an ideal world new game prices should definitely drop if next gen consoles are to follow a similar model to pc games (i.e. single machine activation). "Should" is the operative word, though.
Microsoft's non-resale games next gen really shouldn't be significantly more expensive than games on Steam. Bet they are, though. Which is why steambox is looking like a viable option.


Yep, I don't think MS (or Sony for that matter) have quite grasped how much of a threat a competitively priced, powerful Steambox could be.

I would be surprised if Microsoft went ahead with this by itself but if it does collaborate with Sony then they'll get done for price-fixing.

I think it's very interesting that they've partnered with EA - maybe this scheme goes someway to paying the price of the exclusivity deals.

This is probably the most disastrous Console announcement in history.

Last edited by socialjeebus, May. 25, 2013 at 02:49
DrTrouserPlank  May. 25, 2013 at 07:52

The problem is... the PS4 is going to do the same. Sony have been very coy about what their policy is saying only that "used games will be playable on the PS4"

There isn't a hope in hell that the PS4 will play used games as we have it now. In fact, I'd imagine that if it did, developers would refuse to develop games for it.

Of course, in the highly unlikely event that used games ran for "free" on the PS4, Sony will have won the game before it's even begun (assuming their pricing is sensible and game lineup early on isn't lackluster)

JonLester  May. 25, 2013 at 10:38

@DrTrouserPlank: My inner cynic agrees. If the PS4 freely played used games without any fee/penalty, surely one of their execs would have conveniently mentioned it to ride some of the Xbox One's PR wake.

My inner optimist wants to trust them to "do the right thing," but we'll have to wait and see. "Right" is a very relative term (see also, OtherOS). http://www.dealspwn.com/ps4-preowned-games-sony-131117

Last edited by JonLester, May. 25, 2013 at 10:41
Breadster  May. 25, 2013 at 15:27

This is probably the only reason EA have scrapped online passes as well. Didn't think they could get away with charging you twice for it. Funny that they made a statement about it before the Xbox reveal to try and make it look like they were just finally doing something good.

Oh and if both the consoles have a sysyem like this, I think I just won't bother with them at all unless the games are a lot cheaper. The only reason it doesn't bother me on PC is because the games are far cheaper. The film and music industries don't do stuff like this so I don't see why games should.

Last edited by Breadster, May. 25, 2013 at 15:30
Anarchist  May. 26, 2013 at 14:58

@doctortrouserplank

Indeed - it's amazing how short people's memories are.

http://www.dealspwn.com/sony-patents-anti-preowned-game-nfc-tech-125296

If Sony don't introduce the same (similar) system, ill eat my hat.

Last edited by Anarchist, May. 26, 2013 at 14:59

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