As much as we would all like to believe games will one day go back to retailing for under $60, it doesn’t seem to be happening any time soon when you consider next-generation consoles are expected to offer vastly improved graphics and more bells and whistles than we can even think of. The used game market is a successful one because there are people out there who are willing to wait for the latest and greatest to gain a little dust in order to buy it cheaper than retail, but a new patent from Sony could put a stop to all that if it turns out to be true.
According to a patent Sony filed for in September 2012 uncovered on a thread on NeoGAF, the company wants to introduce a technology that would tag a game with a user’s account or machine and would be able to tell if that game has been used before.
“As a technique to suppress the second-hand sales and purchase, a user may be first required to send a password or the like to a remote authentication server from a reproduction device (game player) via the Internet and the reproduction of content may be permitted only for the device that has succeeded in authentication.”
We know game manufacturers have been trying to deal with used game sales on their own by rewarding gamers who purchase a new version of their game with in-game bonuses or content, but this is the first time we’ve seen a hardware manufacturer take steps towards battling the used game market themselves. Seeing how the next PlayStation is still a few years away from even being mentioned, we’ll take this news with a grain of salt and hope it doesn’t end up being implemented in an upcoming PlayStation console.