What does the Xbox One’s new “No Second-Hand” games policy mean to you?

For some time now, one of the biggest fears in the gaming community has been that Microsoft, and for a while even Sony, would implement some sort of Draconian locking system, which would prevent console owners from either trading in or even loaning their games to a friend.

All of our worst fears have just been realised when Microsoft made it official last night post-conference that they would in fact be tying video game licenses directly to your Xbox Live Gamertag. Couple that with the fact that if you do give your game to a friend, he/she will have to fork out an additional fee to Microsoft before they are able to enjoy their new favourite game.


What does this mean for the already ailing video game industry? With piracy running rife amongst the consumers who complain that video game prices are simply “too high” to afford and the only other legal alternative having been the option to pop down to the nearest video game exchange shop and picking up a pre-played copy of their sought after title on their favourite platform, this might serve to create a much larger divide between Microsoft and it’s customers.

Several of the gamers I follow on Twitter have already stated overtly that because of this, and Microsoft’s move away from backwards compatibility that they would not be picking up the Xbox One at launch or not at all. Sony’s PlayStation 4 is really looking like a viable alternate option at this stage as no mention of a Draconian license locking system has been announced, but Sony hasn’t revealed all their cards yet as is evident with their lack of physical console during their announce event in February.

So the jury is out, without all the facts, gamers are still very confused as to what will be happening with the upcoming generation of video games.


Perhaps a viable option would be the Ouya with it’s Current-Gen system specs, but that is also out considering the console will most likely only work on a digital medium.

There doesn’t seem to be any concrete evidence to support that we will in fact really OWN the games we buy in the next generation as the term “own” implies you can do what you want with the property you bought. At this stage it feels as if we will be renting the game instead of owning it, which might not be taken too well by gamers.


This is quite scary if you think about it. Is this the world we can expect to be living in in the future?

Share your thoughts in the comments below.

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  • javierdacosta

    I just read about MST second hand market and they are not giving any detail, what they said was exactly the same as Sony… The xbox one will be able to play used games… more details at E3

  • Eagles83

    Something that everybody is being hypocritical on is that this same policy is true of both Steam and Origin. Why is there no hate that your friends can’t play the games you own on those digital delivery systems? It is utterly ridiculous the amount of hate being thrown Microsoft’s way when they are just doing exactly what everyone else in the digital space is doing.

    • ShimShimminyShimShim

      Because that has been how it has always been with computer games. Why feign confusion?

    • Jason Villamil

      There is no hate on Steam because PC games tend to run about 10 bucks less then their console versions right from the start, add in the deep discounts you can get from Steam sales 10%,50% sometimes even 75% off and the availability of mods and you get a much more forgiving audience.

      For the few things we give up as PC gamers we get a lot more back to make it worth the trade.

    • Goose1

      Whats sad is even steam has offline mode and doesn’t require you to log in every 24 hours.

  • Awesomer

    Either games for the ONE are dropped to $25 and you return them after 2 years or less since it seems we are renting now. Or Class Action lawsuit against MS and developers for charging full price and still holding claim to ownership. Its like buying a car and they tell you it can never be sold. Fuck that.

    • $25716550

      totally agree….this time next year there would be a HUGE class action going, but i’m willing to bet that as soon as you pop that baby out of the box, and in order to turn it on, you have to be connected to the internet, which will then feed the xbots a huge terms agreement that will essentially sign away all of your rights as a consumer as well as asking for your first born child….it’s the only way microsoft avoids legal action, phil harrison himself said “when you buy a game, it sits on your hardrive & you have PERMISSION to play whenever you’d Like” (assuming your internet is functioning today)…..i don’t know about you, but when i hand over money for a physical product, i don’t want anyone to give me “permission” to use it….in our economy, products & services simply don’t work that way….what microsoft is doing is cracking a door that can never be closed, and will only be thrown wide open if people are desperate enough to get their halo fix that they support it…add on top of that the assumption that this generation, and all of the software you purchased now lasts only as long as microsoft allows, and you have a huge problem….What if microsoft decided to release the xbox two in a couple years time, and switch all servers over to that box? Then all of the money you spent on games is literally flushed down the toilet….maybe microsoft lets you play your old games on the new system “for a fee”…..how kind. The only reason microsoft has to hold these details back at this point, in the middle of a crap storm of epic proportions, is that they want the consumer to be misinformed….they don’t want you to have the whole story when you plop down your cash for the system, and they will hold specifics back until the last possible instant to build buzz for a system that is “in the cloud”, a cloud that we can only access when microsoft says we can….what a joke, anyone that falls for this deserves the stress that will come from it

      • Awesomer

        Ya we are gonna have to wait till E3 and see what really is going on with this. All i know is this whole thing about digital being the future is crap. I don’t feel comfortable paying $65 for a game i can’t hold. And i find it bullshit that games and music cost about the same as physical media. A CD at Best Buy is $10 yet an album on Itunes is $1 per song. How is that when they are saving money with no production costs? Greedy assholes. Also with the whole Bruce Willis suing Apple over his Itunes songs i still don’t trust digital. Apple is saying he cannot give all his music which is around $40k worth to his daughter when he dies because it is in his Itunes name and locked to only him. So even digital when you buy it can’t be given away and Apple owns it when you die or can’t be transfered.

  • ShimShimminyShimShim

    The whole thing is a mess that is either going to be cleaned up quickly at E3 or they’re going to be surprised that it’s not going to sell like the 360 or original xbox, you know the 1st one?

    This is all brought to you by the people who brought us Windows 8 and all it’s new fancy features that we just needed and wanted, though we may not know it! Coming soon to windows 8, sp1, it makes it look like windows 7! So yea, they don’t have a clue what people want….

  • Chance of Gaming

    Lets talk about whats wrong in this article:

    1. an “ailing video game industry”

    2. Piracy is “rife” on consoles

    3. You really think Sony and Nintendo love the used market?

    Expect the PS4 to do the same, and expect PS+ to be the only way you get to multiplayer.

  • Luis Cabrera

    No body buys software, its not a physical thing. We buy licenses and we have since the days of games coming on floppies in ziplock bags.