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Ubisoft Nuking Used Game Sales with Uplay

By - Source: UbiSoft | B 114 comments

Used game consumers are getting another swift kick in the groin thanks to Ubisoft and its new Uplay Passport program.

Friday Ubisoft revealed a new program called Uplay Passport that's undoubtedly established to regain revenue lost in the used games sector. The program will reportedly launch in the coming months and be included in many of the company's popular core games.

"In each new copy of a Uplay Passport-enhanced game will be a one-time use registration code that, when redeemed, provides access to Uplay Passport content and features," the company said in an emailed statement. "The code can be found on the insert card inside the game box. Gamers can identify Uplay Passport-enhanced games by looking for the logo on the back of the box."

Given that this code can only be redeemed once, consumers who purchase a used game laced with Uplay Passport restrictions will be forced to shell out an extra $9.99 to unlock online content and features. This means that a used game which normally costs $5 less than the new packaged version will essentially cost $5 more than the new unopened copy.

"Starting with the upcoming DRIVER San Francisco release, games featuring the new Uplay Passport will offer gamers exclusive bonus content plus access to online features," the company said.

Ubisoft is the latest publisher to jump on the "online pass" choo-choo in order to regain revenue lost in the used game market. EA introduced the "Project Ten Dollar" concept last year with the release of Mass Effect 2 and Dragon Age: Origins. As with Ubisoft's Uplay Passport, the new versions come with a one-time use code to unlock specific content and features. Those who purchase the used versions are required to shell out $9.99 for a new code in order to unlock the full game.

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  • 41 Hide
    Marco925 , July 16, 2011 2:12 AM
    I dont see why this is necessary,

    If i buy a used lawn mower, Honda isnt going to make me pay just to use it.

    the game was bought new at one point. they got their money out of it.
  • 26 Hide
    SmileyTPB1 , July 16, 2011 3:44 AM
    Joshua666, take your own advice and think things through before you type.

    If that is your example then your issue should be with the retailer not the customer. The customer is free to spend his money as he chooses and should not be forced to buy a diminished product because he chooses to buy used. Not everyone can afford to pay full price. Not everyone wants to pay full price for a game that might suck.

    Imagine if more companies from other areas started doing this. You can buy that Range Rover used but it will no longer have 4 wheel drive and will only go 60 miles an hour unless you pay Rover an additional $10,000 above what you paid for the vehicle used.
    You can buy that Sony TV used but it will no longer display in HD unless you pay Sony an additional $100.
    You can buy that used iPhone but it will no longer work until you perform unspeakable act of carnal pleasure on Steve Jobs.

    Do I need to go on?
  • 24 Hide
    mrmike_49 , July 16, 2011 2:32 AM
    Well, I'm not planning on buying any Ubisoft games, used or new, in the future anyway
Other Comments
  • 41 Hide
    Marco925 , July 16, 2011 2:12 AM
    I dont see why this is necessary,

    If i buy a used lawn mower, Honda isnt going to make me pay just to use it.

    the game was bought new at one point. they got their money out of it.
  • 21 Hide
    oneblackened , July 16, 2011 2:12 AM
    ^That's what I was gonna say in a nutshell.
  • 16 Hide
    brickman , July 16, 2011 2:29 AM
    So if I don't use the online features I can sell the game and the next owner won't have to pay $10 to you crooks :D 
  • 23 Hide
    LuckyDucky7 , July 16, 2011 2:31 AM
    There is no revenue lost- this is just a cash grab, plain and simple.
  • 24 Hide
    mrmike_49 , July 16, 2011 2:32 AM
    Well, I'm not planning on buying any Ubisoft games, used or new, in the future anyway
  • 24 Hide
    daniel123244 , July 16, 2011 2:43 AM
    I would like to propose a boycott.
  • 17 Hide
    mister g , July 16, 2011 2:44 AM
    That EA part I didn't hear about 'till now, but I already stopped buying Ubisoft games when they implemented that always online game scheme with Assassin's Creed and others. My thoughts on this is whether or not the features are really worth it or is it just for online access.
  • 15 Hide
    the associate , July 16, 2011 2:49 AM
    This is why the last game I ever bought from ubisoft was FarCry 2, and for just 15 bucks on steam to top it off.
    Weather they're fellow pc gamers or console gamers, their still hurting gamers, so I boycott, unlike, many others who bitch but still buy on release. What the hell do they think the cash for used games goes to most of the time...NEW FREAKING GAMES!!!!WTF??

    Hey, wait a minute, that's like legitimizing theft! I guess they want to lose their client base? These idiots should just shut the f*** up, cause that's what I'd do if I didn't want to lose my client base, I'd shut the f*** up. I'm now ashamed they have a studio in Montreal...
  • -7 Hide
    FloKid , July 16, 2011 3:05 AM
    Doesn't it feel good when you shell out 50% more for a brand spanking new game?

    If you think about it, when a person buys a used game for $25 and the game costs $50, that is $75 instead of $100 if both people bought a new game. Makes sense to me now lol.
  • 20 Hide
    SmileyTPB1 , July 16, 2011 3:24 AM
    The harder you squeeze the customer for money, the less likely they are to keep giving you their money.
  • 21 Hide
    Anonymous , July 16, 2011 3:27 AM
    Alright, so Ubisoft joins EA on my Do Not Buy list. I hope they go bankrupt.
  • 26 Hide
    SmileyTPB1 , July 16, 2011 3:44 AM
    Joshua666, take your own advice and think things through before you type.

    If that is your example then your issue should be with the retailer not the customer. The customer is free to spend his money as he chooses and should not be forced to buy a diminished product because he chooses to buy used. Not everyone can afford to pay full price. Not everyone wants to pay full price for a game that might suck.

    Imagine if more companies from other areas started doing this. You can buy that Range Rover used but it will no longer have 4 wheel drive and will only go 60 miles an hour unless you pay Rover an additional $10,000 above what you paid for the vehicle used.
    You can buy that Sony TV used but it will no longer display in HD unless you pay Sony an additional $100.
    You can buy that used iPhone but it will no longer work until you perform unspeakable act of carnal pleasure on Steve Jobs.

    Do I need to go on?
  • 22 Hide
    nukemaster , July 16, 2011 4:17 AM
    SmileyTPB1You can buy that used iPhone but it will no longer work until you perform unspeakable act of carnal pleasure on Steve Jobs.Do I need to go on?

    LOL
  • 8 Hide
    dcompart , July 16, 2011 4:45 AM
    Are these publishers really in this bad of financial trouble? Is the mobile gaming sector really hurting you that bad Ubisoft, EA, Activision, etc? Mobile devices may have the appearance of hurting the PC and console markets, but it's about time you (they) wake up and smell the coffee. Gaming has done nothing but grow. Gaming is becoming a socially acceptable part of the average person's lives. There is more opportunity, publishers just need to adapt. You have the record industry pushing artists to release albums with one song wonders. Lady Gaga and her god-awful attire have learned that selling cheaper with higher volume is a business model that works. She has sold so many songs by selling them cheaper. Look at the mobile sector. You may have a huge staff and creating a game can be expensive, but look at the gross, don't be stuck on the old and outdated games sales of the past!

    Back on topic, crippling a bought game is a crime in itself. This is greed at it's finest. I am so sick of companies trying to milk every dime out of customers, selling sub par products and complaining how the industry is going, Die already!
  • 8 Hide
    clonazepam , July 16, 2011 4:48 AM
    So buying a used game w/o online content... or pirating it w/o online content... so does that mean if I were to pirate, I would be hurting the 2nd hand market and not the developers?
  • 0 Hide
    dcompart , July 16, 2011 4:49 AM
    Food for Thought:

    A Good Parasite (Pubs) keeps the host(customer pockets) alive...
  • 9 Hide
    SmileyTPB1 , July 16, 2011 5:14 AM
    @mayzie

    They are comparable and yours are not. Your examples are of consumable products. There is nothing left over when you are done. You don't get to take that movie or concert home with you so you can sell it to someone else.

    When you are done with a video game you still have the video game to do with as you want. If you choose to sell it to someone else that is your legal right in the US. It is ethically wrong for a software company to think they deserve to get paid every time their mediocre or crappy game gets resold. If they were really concerned about this they should make games that are so good people want to play them over and over instead of selling them. Then everyone would want to buy it new.

    The public will ultimately decide if they are OK with UbiSoft and other software companies doing this by voting with their wallets.
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