A potentially unfriendly and inconvenient digital rights management future is coming to the next generation of consoles. Microsoft let the cat out of the bag along with a whirlwind of uncertainty and doubt.
Twitter demonstrations and letter campaigns have already sprung up to urge Sony not to follow Microsoft’s path and allow used games to work as they do today. It’s a noble and worthwhile campaign that will hopefully sway Sony and its partners to rethink their future strategy.
But I’m not here to convince everyone to hop online and Tweet. I am here to share my plans and strategies to cope with this potential outcome. I hope I don’t have to employ these tactics but you never know.
Just Like Steam?
Those of us who play PC games have already gone down this DRM path. There is no used games market on the PC. GreenManGaming allows a handful of trade-ins but for the majority publishers and vendors out there, trade-ins are not accepted. You can’t properly lend games and regular online checks are often required as well.
We put up with all of this because of one simple reason: low prices.
I have a threshold for PC games and it hovers around $30. I am willing to pay $30 (and sometimes more) for a PC game that I really like. Without the ability to trade-in, I am unwilling to pay $50 to $60 on a title that I may or may not thoroughly enjoy. I will wait and continue to wait for a title to hit the price point that I feel comfortable with before parting with my money.
Yes. There’s no magical secret to this. I don’t buy used games, I just wait until new games hit low enough prices. I may not be able to lend or borrow games but again, that’s something I can overcome with low enough prices.