Now the retailers are complaining about second hand sales

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So 2011 saw the introduction of online passes for certain video games where a one time code was included in the box for online gameplay but then if you sold your game to a BT Games or the like and someone else picked it up for cheap then they’d be forced to fork out a little bit more to get a new online code from the publisher.

This idea was implemented as a direct response to the second hand market where publishers bizarrely think they should get a share of the revenue of the sales because it’s their product or something like that.

Obviously that makes no sense and therefore it hasn’t ever really been considered as viable until now… yes the retailers in the UK are now publicly mulling over the possibility of giving the publishers a share of the second hand game sales if they agree to get rid of the one time pass idea.

Which points to these passes really hitting them pretty hard as they used to make a killing out of the second hand sales market and now when you are faced with a decision to get FIFA 12 for R450 or R300 + online code it’s unsurprising that more people are just buying new.

But since they are buying from the same retailer why are the retailers upset? Well because they are only making around R50 profit on the new game and R150 on the second hand one.

Will a revenue share solve this problem? No… simply because the portion of revenue the publishers will want would equate to the cost of the online pass and therefore you’re back in the same situation.

I’m oddly enjoying seeing the retailers squirm a bit but I think that’s simply because I’m not a nice guy.

What I’m not enjoying is seeing the death of the second hand market. At least we can pinpoint its death. It was 2011 and EA started it with Project $10

Last Updated: January 12, 2012

Gavin Mannion

I for one welcome our future robotic overlords

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