Publishers may block pre-owned for a period after release – analyst

Most consumers know that when buying a new game they’ll get a good chunk of the cost back if they trade it in within two weeks.

Indeed, some retailers even offer discount deals where gamers need pay only 99p for a brand new release as long as the game is traded back in within 14 days.

And that’s precisely the reason why publishers may choose to exploit Microsoft’s new pre-owned control functionality to block the trading in of new titles for a period after the game is released.

Many believe that used games sold in proximity to a new game’s release cannibalises sales of the new title (we believe this is probably true),” he said in an investor note.

So we think that some publishers may limit used game trade-ins for a specified period of time following the game’s launch.”

However, Pachter doesn’t foresee any publishers introducing a simple blanket ban on all their releases.

"In our view, any publisher that disables used gaming risks a backlash or boycott of its titles by gamers, negatively impacting sales," he added.

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