Used Video Games Market More Damaging Than Piracy

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Lionhead, the developer of Fable III, has been explaining how the used games market on Xbox 360 is actually a bigger problem to the company than piracy on the PC platform.

Speaking with Eurogamer, Fable III combat designer Mike West said that pirates work fast.

“The pirates, whatever you do on whatever system, they will crack it,” he explained. “It might take no time… I think the longest it’s taken to happen is two days. Someone will crack it somewhere and there’s not much you can do about it.”

“But, as I say, second-hand sales cost us more in the long-run than piracy these days,” he concludes.

Several companies have tried to sabotage the used games market, such as EA with its online pass which only enables certain features of games for the original buyer – purchasers of pre-owned games are left having to buy a pass direct from EA.

Time will tell if this approach is counter productive. These games from EA – such as Need For Speed Hot Pursuit – are noticeably cheaper in the used market which means that people who trade them in will get less money in return. Less money back means less money to buy new games, hardly helpful to the new games market….

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