Rage new purchase incentive detailed

Postapocalyptic shooter will discourage used game sales by curtailing single-player content; creative director Tim Willits calls himself a "big proponent" of always-online DRM.

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Always-on digital rights management and online passes are two trends that sparked an abundance of gamer rage lately, but only one will actually find its way into the game Rage. In an interview with Eurogamer, creative director Tim Willits confirmed that the postapocalyptic shooter would lock out some content for people who bought the game used but wouldn't require a constant online connection.

Since when did letting people into a sewer become an incentive?
Since when did letting people into a sewer become an incentive?

Instead of taking the standard online pass approach of locking out the game's multiplayer modes unless a user enters a one-time code that comes with new copies or pays a $10 fee, Rage will rope off some single-player content. Diligent players will come across sewer hatches in the world of Rage that take them to new missions. If those players bought the game new (and bothered to download the associated content), those hatches will be open to them.

"[M]ost people never even see it," Willits said of the hatches. "I can tell you, some people will buy Rage, download that, and still never set foot in those things. They just won't. I think that's fair. It's cool. It's outside the main path. We're not detracting from anything. But I know some consumers, when you can't avoid it, then you get a little touchy subject."

As for DRM that requires a constant connection, the sort that was recently confirmed for Diablo III and championed by Ubisoft, Willits said that won't be used in Rage. However, he did call himself a "big proponent" of the idea and believes a game as eagerly anticipated as Diablo III will go a long way to making that approach acceptable for gamers.

"If you have a juggernaut, you can make change," Willits said. "I'm all for that. If we could force people to always be connected when you play the game and then have that be acceptable, awesome."

Willits acknowledged that some people would continue to resent the need to be online in order to enjoy a single-player game, but he said it would wind up being better for everyone involved. He cited automatic updates as a particular benefit to the scheme.

Rage is set to launch on the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, and PC on October 4. For more on the game, check out GameSpot's previous coverage.

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