Sony won't block used games, says analyst

Wedbush's Michael Pachter dismisses "Orbis" rumors suggesting next PlayStation system will hobble secondhand games.

A widely reported leak from an unnamed industry source about the next iteration of the PlayStation came from "a monkey," according to well-known industry analyst Michael Pachter, of Wedbush Securities. The suggestions that the next PlayStation will block used games is just as unlikely as when it was suggested in 2005 that the PlayStation 3 would block sales of used games following a patent application, Pachter said in a statement released to industry news site GamesIndustry International.

Michael Pachter is not one to keep his opinions to himself.

It is "just a rehash of that old rumor and the recent one about the Xbox 720," he continued, before saying that the story's "reliable source is a monkey." The "consumer backlash" from blocking secondhand games would be huge, Pachter said. It would also be unlikely to help the firm financially, he said, though he did admit that it might benefit the larger publishers such as EA and Activision "slightly."

This backlash will prevent Sony, Nintendo, or Microsoft from unilaterally blocking used games, he said. While a multilateral move might mitigate some of the fallout, none of the three firms "are evil enough to do it together."

As well as a consumer backlash, Pachter indicated that GameStop--which he sees as the biggest potential loser in this scenario--would simply refuse to carry the console. This refusal would naturally hurt sales of the platform, he said.

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258 comments
Sabinsnake
Sabinsnake

>>Pachter indicated that GameStop--which he sees as the biggest potential loser in this scenario<<

 

.and Pachter is right, Gamestop is the biggest loser.

 

frankly I wouldn't care if the PS4 didn't play used games, I don't buy/rent used games anyway (i'm a game collector), since used games are only $5 cheaper than the brand new games at Gamestop, plus they give you pertty much pocket change for your used games as well, so you're not getting a good deal there. I wouldn't even care if Gamestop went out of business, they suck and they aren't the only place that buys your used games from you. there are pawn shops that'll give you more money for your used games than Gamestop and they sell their used games like $30 cheaper.

 

 

Falru
Falru

Also, I forgot to mention this, but in my honest opinion, blocking used games sales would make potential buyers even more cautious about buying games then they are now. If you can't return/resell a game you absolutely hate, people are going to want to be downright positive that something is worth their money before committing to buy.

 

There are plenty of games out there that would never have been played if not for used games (for me, it was Xenosaga 1-3).

Falru
Falru

I rarely even buy Used games, I like my games shiny a new because I'm weird like that. But it REALLY pisses me off to think that they're even considering blocking used games. You'd be hard put to find another consumer-based industry that tries to inconvenience and control their consumers so much. I go to a barber shop down the street every 2 months or so to get my hair cut, but I once allowed my Mom to cut my hair for me instead. Yes, this does technically mean the barber's lost a sale, but that's no justification to pass a law that prevents mothers from cutting their children's hair.

Topnotchtwitch
Topnotchtwitch

i cant even even explain the horror i experienced when reading that they were considering blocking used games. i didnt hear about it last time so this time it about gave me a heart attack. lol. lets all just take a moment to pray that this is correct and sony comes to its senses.. 

barnold81
barnold81

I think Gamestop would lose more if it opted not to carry the console. They might just not push any of the marketing for it. They will promote the other options.

XanderZane
XanderZane

@Khasym said: @XanderZane It would force gamers to buy NEW titles from now on, which would put more money into publishers hands, instead of retailers and gamers who usually sell used games. You're right about gamers buying used games that they normally wouldn't try if they had to pay full price. Publishers don't realize that they would actually look a large number of gamers, because many gamers probably wouldn't buy as many games if they couldn't get them at a cheaper price. Some would just stop buying all together.

AyRoks
AyRoks

@RighteousWoman Can I borrow a few bucks?

AyRoks
AyRoks

It seems like more than a few of the commentors in this thread are a little confused... Blocking used games & 'backwards compatibility' are 2 different things people. The latter obviously meaning, playing games from the previous system gen. The former meaning no used versions of the new gen console games. BIG difference... 'Backwards compatibility', we already have, no used games is what is said will be happening, although I can't really see it happening myself at all, for all the same reasons already mentioned by others.

lordharding
lordharding

I don't believe any new console will block used games. I just think the next gen will see games released purely through digital download. And that will be the publishers' choice rather than the console makers. Sure, publishers will lose some people who aren't connected to the internet, but that approach hasn't done Apple any harm. I'm ok with that approach if the cost of new games is slashed to be closer to what you'd pay for a 2-3 month old used game (and the price continues to reduce based on length of time on the store).

pboontap
pboontap

@RighteousWoman don't get me wrong, i'm happy that you are financially able to afford 60 dollar games and i applaud your patience in waiting for the games you want to come down to a more reasonable price. that being said not everyone is as patient or well off as you, and i think you are dismissing their concerns out of hand. many fine folks need to save money in any way they can, and if its only 5 to 10 bucks on a newer used game so be it. sure you can wait until its dropped in price for a new game, but thats a when and if proposition, and often as not the game story will be spoiled or the MP may have died off or any number of other things could occur

pboontap
pboontap

so still no official word from sony in other words?

theKSMM
theKSMM

I haven't believed this rumor since I first heard it. The requirement that your console always be connected to the Internet would shrink the base of gamers substantially which completely negates the potentially increased sales of new games. And that's before you even start counting the loss of gamers who are just pissed off by the move. And the console-makers are supposed to implement this expensive new infrastructure for what? So that the publishers can make a little more money? How does that make sense for Nintendo, Sony, and Microsoft?

SeptuagintXXX
SeptuagintXXX

They need to make the experience so unique and personable that there is no point to buying a used game. Look at what blizzard did with SCII. The value is in your account. you can steal the game, but you won't have access to your own personal account and you can't play on line. problem solved.

Ultra_Taco
Ultra_Taco

I find it really confusing that anyone would actually believe these rumors about the next Microsoft and Sony console.....

slyguy65
slyguy65

@barnold81 Nope they have stated many times (well sony at least) that they are not focusing on backwards compatability...sooo yaaaa.

barnold81
barnold81

I didn't know that it was the hardware manufacturer that would block used games. I thought it would be up to the third party developers to do that. EA is already doing it, right? I'm hoping the next Playstation and Xbox systems are fully backwards compatible. I really want to play my Playstation 2 games, and don't feel like waiting to have to purchase an HD version to do so.

generalkorn12
generalkorn12

Next gen consoles need to cater for the customer, like bring back backwards compatability for their old titles, I can't fathom to understand why they won't do that, when it gives them other ways to milk money off of us, by buying their older titles!

HeadExploder
HeadExploder

I hope this guy knows what he's talking about. i find comfort in this article. the thought of the next-gen consoles not supporting secondhand games honestly sickens me. theres no reason for huge fat cat corporations like sony to do this other than to fatten their wallets even more. as if theyre not making enough money? at least half of my game library are used games from gamestop, ebay, friends, etc. they save me alot of money, 'specially when its a relatively new game that i can get a discount on. i hope this guy is right.

RighteousWoman
RighteousWoman

I never buy used games and I rarely pay more than 29.99. In fact, a large percentage of my game collection for this generation was purchased at the 10-20 dollar price point. So the I cant afford 60 dollar games argument doesn't hold any water. Nobody is forcing people to buy the games when they first come out and there are usually sales within the first month of a games release that can save you at least 20 bucks off that 59.99 price tag. I can afford 60 dollar games and I never spend more than 39.99. I think I have purchased 4-5 games this generation for full price and even then I got pre-order credits that I applied to later purchases. Don't get me wrong, I am against the industry halting used game sales but using the 60 dollar price tag argument as the reason why used games should be allowed to exist.....well, again it just doesn't hold any water.

lindallison
lindallison

mod-chip makers and installers would have a field day if used games were somehow blocked...

TigusVidiks
TigusVidiks

it's always been a ridiculous claim, as far as I'm concerned. Blocking used games, as said for the last few months , either done by Sony or Microsoft, it's impossible. Yes, they might talk about it, to test the waters and to stretch the line to see where it breaks, but actually doing it it's a whole new ball game. It's not just the backlash from consumers. What would that mean for the big companies? On one hand, they are counting on increased sales of new games since people would not be able to buy used. But lots of poeple who buy used, if they end up really liking the game, they might buy the DLCs for that game, even if they bought it used. However, if they had to spend 60 bucks right at the store, they might not want to invest more than that in a videogame. And also, it's not that clear that the new games sales would increase, like they hope. Because there's also the consideration that less people will be willing to spend 60 bucks on a new game, if they do't have where to sell it later to recover part of the investment. But it would also mean less people in the multiplayer modes of all games, which would make the general investment made by devs in that game mode, something with a smaller return of profit. Less map packs sold, less people playing, less hype, less mouth to mouth publicity, etc. IMO blocking used games would be the biggest mistake the industry would ever make in decades to come.

lfebaggins
lfebaggins

Why do people continue to ask for this moron's opinion. Not only is Pachter's job a joke, hes horrible at it because he has no idea how the gaming industry works. He either makes a wrong prediction or states something completely obvious. Pachter should switch to becoming a research analyst for the tablet industry. "I predict Apple Ipads will lead sales this year".

hickabickabooya
hickabickabooya

I think the lack of a unilateral move against used games has less to do with whether or not the 3 companies are "evil," and more to do with the fact that if two joined up to make the same business move (MS and S) the other (N) would do something else to make a profit of the people who aren't happy.

ApocaLeepse
ApocaLeepse

Good. Now all we need to do is get Microsoft to say that it won't be supporting this either (although that might not happen, since I recall them saying that they support all these used game restrictions).

Klokateer
Klokateer

Hope this is true or I'll be done with the PS and X-Box come next gen.

Engerys
Engerys

if used games sales are hurting publishers why don't they form a group and start a chain of stores that competes with game stop would solve many problems including charging so much damn money for a used game.

csward
csward

No, Gamestop not carrying the console wouldn't hurt its sales, however, blocking used games will. People would just go to Wal-Mart, Gamerz, ect. if Gamestop didn't carry it. Now, with Best Buy focusing on making 100 new Best Buy mobile stores in fiscal 2013, I still can't imagine Gamestop not selling cell phones at some point. There's just too much money there.

flamesofexuro
flamesofexuro

oh thank god! i was pissed when i heard about not being able to play used games! some of us cant afford to shell out 60 bucks all the man!!

SCWoodson007
SCWoodson007

i feel like the game industry would collapse if used games were blocked. that would cut off some huge industries that sell used games (Gamestop, Glyde.com, Best Buy) and rentals would be impossible too. that would be a huge loss in jobs, (and people who work at those places do enjoy videogames) so people would be less and less likely to buy games as they lose jobs and prices of games probably go up (debatable). and like Pachter said, if Gamestop and Best-Buy stopped selling the systems to save themselves, less and less people would buy them then anyways. or maybe i just play/watch to many apocalypse games/movies...

iluvOP
iluvOP

There wont be backwards compability if there wont be a cell processor in it. Simple as that.

starvinPerez
starvinPerez

No Blocked Games + Backward Capability = Me a Playstation Customer

YukoAsho
YukoAsho

@kcooper_007 - I noticed that too. Funny how that works. And man... You know a rumor is bull when Micheal "Wii HD" Pachter comes out with a well-reasoned argument against.

NoelXYeul
NoelXYeul

That's okay and all, I don't buy used games. But what I'm worried about is the next Playstation not playing current PS3 games. I learned it was bad enough having no PS2 playback on the PS3, but now that these greedy companies are in a hurry to go on to another generation that nobody wants, nobody can afford, and is not technically needed, we're going to face that again. If I see Sony put no PS3 play on the new Playstation and dare start releasing them for download on the PSN, I will definitely be going to the BBB.

hleflore
hleflore

Unfortunately blocking used games will not lower prices. I would advocate blocking used games sales if it would lower cost 20% this move will not lower prices one red cent. It didnt lower prices for PC. Digital distribution doesnt lower prices. If you charge me 60.00 to cut the grass. If I give I put 60.00 in your hand for work that cost you 50.00 to do one day then your cost comes down to 5.00 are you going to charge me less. No. You would pocket the profit.

Keledron
Keledron

@sweendrix again, that will never, ever happen. They've already seen people will pay 60+ for a game. They're not going to lower it just because everyone will buy it. In fact I could see the first big publisher franchise game being released on a console like that and charged MORE (claiming production costs are still high, people need to get paid, etc etc), and you will either buy it or not play the game. Used games are the only thing keeping publishers from charging 80 dollars a game at this point. When you have a system that allows NO price competition (you either buy what we charge for it, or you don't play), you can charge whatever you want. And trust me, they will.

Keledron
Keledron

@Shiftfallout -- You obviously don't know that much about marketing and consumption. Used games aren't "killing sales", the big publishers have figured out how to make a decent amount on DLC sales to supplement them. "As someone already stated, if they block used games they should also either allow free DLC and or lower the over all cost of the products." Right... yeah... that won't happen. Especially if its EA published. Why do that when they can make a profit on it? All the Call of Duty mappack kiddies that have bought the same bunch of maps 3 games in a row now gives them zero reason to give it away to everyone because everyone playing has a "genuine" new game. Fact is, Corps will never shut off a channel to make money unless its against the law for them to do so. The other fact is, blocking used games on a console is an absolutely moronic idea. There is a business in used games, a BIG business, and the publishers are just now realizing how to make money on it with DLC. Expect to see more of that, which I'm fine with, and I'm also fine with being able to keep my Gamefly subscription, beat Uncharted 3 in 3 days, and happily return it knowing I didn't have to spend $70 on it.

ebookerd1
ebookerd1

Doesn't EA do this now anyway? You have to pay $20 to unlock all the features.

Nerissa
Nerissa

I'll just wait and see...

Shiftfallout
Shiftfallout

Blocking used games from working is a great idea! It helps the publisher, the developer and ultimately the gamer. Piracy isnt hurting the industry, its used game sales which are far worse than piracy. As someone already stated, if they block used games they should also either allow free DLC and or lower the over all cost of the products.

spectacledGent
spectacledGent

Michael Pachter is only ever right about things that are completely obvious anyway.

Sweendrix
Sweendrix

The three companies would be fine if they did this as long as they lowered the retail price of new games. This would be essential.

Sgthombre
Sgthombre

This is the same guy who said that Sony would win the console war because the PS3 has a blu-ray. I take everything he has to say with the same stock as I would with a statement from a drunk 4 year old. Pachter is a moron, don't believe a word out of his mouth.

walders
walders

People outside of Sony are speculating what Sony is doing. Why should I care?

jakesnakeel
jakesnakeel

The only way this would happen is if Sony and MS both agree to add these used game blocks at the same time. There are just too many rumors about each company doing this, that I have to think that at least this is being planned by both companies. It's akin to AT&T and Verizon (supposedly fierce competitors) both shutting down unlimited cell phone plans in the same week.

RatchetV1
RatchetV1

it's funny how people who say 'It's funny how the people who say "Stopped reading after 'says analyst'!" are generally the same people who whole heartedly believe rumour and speculation from unnamed sources.' don't actually find it funny.

kcooper_007
kcooper_007

It's funny how the people who say "Stopped reading after 'says analyst'!" are generally the same people who whole heartedly believe rumour and speculation from unnamed sources.

Chico_Azteca
Chico_Azteca

.....Well this guy is always wrong, always they will block them

kwanzudood
kwanzudood

Analysts are just like the psychics of the investment world. They just have to sound "kinda right" for people to listen to them, but they don't know any more than anybody else.

jockie_chan
jockie_chan

 @Sabinsnake Gamestop is just a leech, sooner or later they'll get killed by the host.

But will the host cut off their arm to get rid of the leech or will they do it with much less collateral damage?