Activision Battling Pre-Owned Games In Its Own Way
Publishers really don't like pre-owned games. The game sells again; the publisher doesn't see a dime of that new sale.
So it probably shouldn't be surprising to see the big boys take certain steps, like EA Sports' Online Pass, which requires players to enter a one-time code for certain in-game content and access to online multiplayer. To follow, THQ did something similar and Ubisoft has already publicly supported such ideas. Now, Activision has joined the fray; during last night's Q2 investor's call, COO Thomas Tippl confirmed his company's own unique maneuver to combat pre-owned sales. He says they'll increase the importance of its DLC so as to "limit the supply" of content in pre-owned titles:
"We are still evaluating various possibilities for greater participation in the used-games business. What's been working the best so far is providing additional content and therefore limiting the supply to used games. So that's a proven strategy that we will continue. And any other initiatives, we will be talking about when we get closer to it."
He added that Activision is utilizing "more resources than ever" in creating extra content for the Call of Duty franchise, so one can expect some significant bonus material for the upcoming Black Ops. But at this rate, publishers will take a variety of routes so as to squeeze a bit of money out of a massive pre-owned industry that nets them nothing. We'll have to see what other companies do in the future...
8/6/2010 10:50:29 AM Ben Dutka