Ubisoft Eyes EA's Used Games Initiatives

May 19, 2010 -

And so it begins. French publisher Ubisoft said during its Tuesday earnings call that it is closely watching EA's "$10 solution" to monetize used games. Ubisoft Chief Financial Officer Alain Martinez told conference call participants that Ubisoft "will probably follow that line at sometime in the future." He added that most of the games that the company plans to release next year will "have downloadable content available from the start."

EA's initiative to monetize used game sales is called "Project $10" and the basic idea is to get consumers who buy a used copy of a game at places like Gamestop to spend extra money one a $10 one-time code to get additional content that is basically free to those who buy that same game new.

But EA is even more aggressive when it comes to its sports titles; the company announced "Online Pass," which would charge used game buyers $10 purchase a one-time code and unlock online play in sports titles like Madden, Tiger Woods, NCAA Football, and more. Again, those who purchase a new game will be able to use a code that comes with the game.

Publishers do not see any revenue from the sale of used games, so they are toying with the idea of getting what they can from consumers who buy the games, as opposed to retailers who sell them.

Source: Gamasutra


Comments

Re: Ubisoft Eyes EA's Used Games Initiatives

As if Ubisoft needed to give gamers another reason to hate them after their recent DRM fiasco. EA and Ubisoft are trying to outdo each other in stupidity. I think the only reason people have put up with it this long is because both companies have wildly popular franchises. If they ever lose that touch, they're toast.

Still, I think EA and Ubisoft could spin this positively. Sell copies of the games without the online code for $10 less. Then they could make the $10 off the people who want online and get some new sales from the people who will only play single player and would otherwise buy the game used for $10 less six months later. It would at least give them some extra sales that they wouldn't otherwise get.

Re: Ubisoft Eyes EA's Used Games Initiatives

nah that would be fair and honest no they will make you pay full price for the incomplete game then the extra fee for a "special edition"

Re: Ubisoft Eyes EA's Used Games Initiatives

(WARNING Im going to rant bad spelling and grammer may be present the following views are oppinions only so yknow take it all with a grain of salt no hard feelings ok)

 

when you buy the game you buy the whole thing you shouldnt have to unlock anything

and incentive to buy new is fine but dont go cutting out whole levels

all this day one dlc is bad news as consoles/pc's and hdd's break down and games stop making a profit and dlc stops being made available to download. all games wether they were bought new or not end up as the worst version of that game. THAT is not what you bought

what they need to do is drop the price of the game as sales drop if a new copy of the game is competative with a used copy even if its a little more Ill buy it. thats the only thing that will stop the used game market do they think what their doing will stop used games?.

you could argue that it will just make people wait for the price to drop. that only happens if you cant afford the game or if the game simply isnt worth it either way its not going to be bought full price either take advantage of that yourselves or the used market will.

bottom line make the game worth buying new (many games sell hundreds of thousands of copy's in their first week if not millions so dont tell me my method wont turn a prothet) that way they will buy it new and then not sell/trade it or atleast keep it for longer. then when you lower the price to compete with the used market your not losing many (if any) full price sales. infact since you would be in essence getting most of the used sales you would likely make more money than if you kept the price up.

look if your game isnt worth buying new dont be childish because you didnt get all the money your greedy hands wanted. do your job make a good game youll get your money dont hold parts of your game to ransome till people pay up.

Re: Ubisoft Eyes EA's Used Games Initiatives

I'm not surprised Ubi are jumping in on this. I just wonder if it's going to reach a point where it'll actually turn around and bite them on the arse. Maybe someone dared them - no... double-dog-dared them - to alienate themselves from the gaming populace. Butchering franchises, implementing DRM unsuitable to most regions of the world, and now this. I guess they could be simply trying to forcibly change their audience demographic to high-income major city dwellers with poor long-term memories. Sounds like an odd niche market to me.

Re: Ubisoft Eyes EA's Used Games Initiatives

"I wonder if they're counting the negative effect in this."

It's very doubtful. When companies do something like this, they only ever count the figures that work best for their spin. The rest of it just doesn't exist.

Re: Ubisoft Eyes EA's Used Games Initiatives

I wonder if they're counting the negative effect in this.

AC II was a planned day one buy for me. Now I'm waiting for all the DLC bundled (e.g. GotY edition or similar).

Re: Ubisoft Eyes EA's Used Games Initiatives

I don't have a problem with publishers giving free content to people who buy games new. As long as publishers don't withold content vital to playing the game or withold online play to used game buyers like EA's planning for sports games, I see nothing wrong.

 

Re: Ubisoft Eyes EA's Used Games Initiatives

I've gotta agree.  I'm not a fan of blocking a huge part of the game (like online play) but I actually don't mind this method of getting money from used sales.  So long as buyers (even those who buy used copies) get the core game, having to pay for special features, certain game modes, maps, that kind of thing, is fine by me.

It's certainly better than trying to enforce some crazy EULA to legally prevent used sales.

===============

Chris Kimberley

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Chris Kimberley

Re: Ubisoft Eyes EA's Used Games Initiatives

There's some detail your missing - the downloads have an expiration date, at least the way EA is doing it. If you didn't already get your Dragon Ages content with a new purchase, tough luck, you're not getting it free now.

 

 

Re: Ubisoft Eyes EA's Used Games Initiatives

Why not try and give the retailer better intensives to shape the profit derived from used game sales? 10% off new games for 5% of their used title sales.


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Re: Ubisoft Eyes EA's Used Games Initiatives

 Every time I see stuff like this, I wonder if they have been hiring MBAs that drank their way through economics....

Re: Ubisoft Eyes EA's Used Games Initiatives

I think this parody applies...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=INBHYQDQCcM

Re: Ubisoft Eyes EA's Used Games Initiatives

I saw that the other day and have to say I liked it.

 
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