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Sony leaves door open for publishers to impose fees on used PS4 games


PS4 E3

Game publishers could still impose fees on used PS4 games, despite Sony's crowd-pleasing E3 assurances that there would be no restrictions on sales, trades or lends.

During its keynote address at the Los Angeles gaming expo, Sony looked to have scored a massive win over Microsoft's Xbox One by proclaiming: "Gamers should be free to trade in their games, sell them or loan them to friends."

Microsoft had caused controversy and garnered ill-will over its plans to allow publishers to add DRM software that would prevent gamers playing used or borrowed games on their console.

However, it appears that beneath the bravado and fun-poking YouTube videos (below), Sony is adopting a similar strategy. It's leaving the decision in the publishers' hands, but unlike Microsoft, it has spoken out against any restrictions.

Speaking to CNET, Sony's head of Worldwide Studios in America Scott Rhode said: "We can't dictate what another company's policy will be."

However, Rhode pointed out that, from the thunderous ovation the announcement received during the PlayStation keynote last night, it would now take a very brave publisher to go against the grain.

"Especially after they saw the reaction from last night," he added.

Rhode also said Sony had no plans to mention used games during the keynote address, but such was the negative response to Microsoft's policy, that an easy win had presented itself.

"This was always part of our plan. We didn't feel it was necessary for us to talk about it."

Despite arguably having a less impressive array of launch titles in the works following Monday's dual addresses, Sony came out of the day with massive momentum, thanks largely to capitalising Microsoft's own perceived mistakes.

Sony's announcement that there'd be no enforced online connectivity, contrary to the Xbox One's once-a-day check-in requirement was greeted with more rapturous applause.

The company has also undercut the Xbox One by £80 by deciding to launch in the UK for £349, compared with Microsoft's £429 price-point.


June 12, 2013, 1:36 am

So SOny are just lying and developers like EA wil still charge a used games fee not surprised there's a reason wii u is not getting any third party support and ps4 is, there's no way MS would do what they did if developers didn't require them too, Sony have just lied, and I can't wait to see the reaction hen the fanboys first hear about EA or Ubisoft charging a fee for used games


June 12, 2013, 6:43 am

I don't even get why developers think it is in their interest to kill the second hand market. Are they really too short-sighted to see that people will more readily buy a game if they know it is not all money down the drain, that it retains a second hand value. That pocket-money spenders buying used games get into the whole ecosystem, want new games for their birthday, and later have more moeny to spend on new games themselves? It just beggars belief that the devs really think that used games cost them business - they are the seedcorn for so many young gamers.

John Breeze

June 12, 2013, 7:00 am

At least for what its worth Microsoft had the balls just to tell us all. As a consumer, who's preordered both, I don't like being lied to.


June 12, 2013, 8:00 am

EA has been imposing fees this generation! look where it go them, america's worst company!

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