Heavy Rain dev says used sales cost studio millions

Quantic Dream cofounder says the game went double platinum, but an extra million played it "without giving me one cent."


The troubled global economy in recent years has reshaped the gaming industry in a number of ways. But when asked about the impact of the recession by GamesIndustry.biz, Quantic Dream cofounder and European Games Developer Federation chairman Guillaume de Fondaumiere pointed to it sparking "the rise of secondhand gaming."

Used sales Heavy Rained on Quantic Dreams' parade.
Used sales Heavy Rained on Quantic Dreams' parade.

Calling the used market "one of the number one problems right now in the industry," de Fondaumiere cited his own studio's Heavy Rain as an example. He pointed out that the PlayStation 3-exclusive adventure game sold 2 million copies, but the developer's trophy stats show 3 million people played it.

"On my small level, it's a million people playing my game without giving me one cent," de Fondaumiere said. "And my calculation is, as Quantic Dream, I lost between €5 million ($6.8 million) and €10 million ($13.6 million) worth of royalties because of secondhand gaming."

The developer went on to say that developers and publishers "are going to see that they can't make a living out of producing games that are sold through retail channels because of secondhand gaming," and will wind up moving exclusively to digital distribution channels. However, de Fondaumiere did acknowledge that prices of new games are "probably too expensive," and that all parties will need to work together for the best outcome for consumers, retailers, developers, and publishers.

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