So my boyfriend told me about this the other night. I know, I shouldn’t have to be told about these things, but as I’ve said before, I really don’t have time for anything aside from uni work at the moment. I don’t know if this is 100% sollid yet, or if it’s still just a rumour from a ‘source’, but here are my thoughts and feelings on this.
I’ve always been an avid buyer of second hand games. Not because I don’t want to buy new, I just can’t afford to at the moment. If I had enough money to buy every single game I wanted on release date, well, I’d be living a life of luxury. Instead, I’m a student. I’ve missed out on Ni No Kuni and Dead Space 3 because I simply don’t have time to play them. I may have the money to buy them at the moment, but by the time it gets to the end of March and my funds are stretched, I’ll end up looking at those plastic wrapped cases and thinking ‘Why?’. But that’s just me.
I’m no industry expert, but I really don’t see the reason why second hand games are such a threat. I get it, they want more new sales, but a second hand sale is like free advertising. I’m sure there are many people out there, like me, who have gone into a Game, or a HMV and looked through the second hand games and picked up something really good. From that point on you might decide that you want to keep an eye out for the next instalment. By the time the next game comes out in that series, or by that company, you might decide you want to get it on the day of release. There you go, an extra sale you might not have got before.
Removing the second hand market also alienates a massive portion of potential consumers. Kids with their pocket money can’t afford £40 games. Casual gamers aren’t going to buy as extensively as the more hardcore of us. Hardcore gamers will play, sell, purchase and play. I’ll admit, I find it hard to part with games and I rarely sell them, but if there’s something I really want I’ll trade in a couple of games and get maybe £10 off a new game.
What about services like LoveFilm? They offer games to rent. That kills part of their market in one hit. I know a lot of people who rent games from LoveFilm because either they don’t want to pay for the full game, or they just want to have a little dabble.
I understand that the industry needs as much money as it can to keep going, and to keep making awesome games, but this really isn’t the way forward in my opinion. It’s like Microsoft wants the high street to die. It’s like they want to alienate their customers and force them to spend money they don’t have. I remember when the PS3 first came out and they were charging £50 for a single game. Two PS3 games would have put you back £100. That’s just scary. I picked up three second hand games for £60 several months back. I wanted some new games, I couldn’t afford to buy them new so I looked for second hand.
I don’t know, this has gone a bit rambly, but in summary; Don’t kill the second hand games market Microsoft, that’s really not very nice of you.