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The Digital Gaming Pre-Owned Sales Conundrum

At the same time EA announce an inevitable change to digital based gaming, Court of Justice of the European Union reveals EU users can re-sell their online purchases.

So recently there have been two big announcements; one coming from EA saying that their change to a completely digital based company is inevitable. And one from CVRIA (The Court of Justice of the European Union) stating that EU users can re-sell their online purchases. Well this creates an interesting situation, wouldn't you agree? Firstly this ruling from the CVRIA is to be applied to both existing and future digital purchases, so all those titles you have collecting virtual dust on Steam or Origin could soon be available to for you to sell. This however, I fear isn't all good news as it will almost undoubtedly add to our DRM (Digital Rights Management) woes. Things like online passes and various other schemes have been developed to combat pre-owned purchases of physical copies of games and I fear this will only become more strict, frequent and costly as we make the move to pre-owned digital purchases. Obviously there are more details we need before any conclusions can be drawn but it's clear companies like EA will be busy constructing ways to ensure that we buy their games for the full retail price from their online services rather than pick up games for much cheaper through pre-owned sales. Could we also anything as extreme as the end of Valves incredibly generous holiday sales, I sure hope the latter never happens but with people possibly being able to pick up cheaper pre-owned games all year round, will Valve see the need to offer out such incredible offers? As I stated before though, we need more information on this and at this time I'm doing nothing more than speculating. It does seem however that this leaves companies like Crytek one step ahead with their free to play future. Making their money through micro-transactions does ultimately mean that there is no pre-owned threat as anyone can pick up the game for free. So will we see yet more developers adopt this model in order to avoid the financial costs brought on from the re-selling of their titles?
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Contributor

A British games journalist who loves everything gaming and technology. You can find him on Twitter @SuperMassive20 and through his blog.