Are Used Games Worth it?

The used game market has been bombarded by so many difficulties by publishers and developers.

By Grayshadow, Posted 05 Oct 2012

The used game market has suffered many setbacks in the last decade. Publishers and developers have encourage consumers to purchase new copies of their game by enticing the customer with exclusive content and online multiplayer passes, causing people looking for cheaper alternatives to lose out on certain options. But despite the price is purchasing new games; even at a higher cost better than buying a new copy? Or is it buying a used copy of a game you might be doing more harm than good for the people responsible for creating that product by siphoning money from those responsible for making the game.

Used Video Games, Market, Publisher, Developer, Cheap Games, Pre-Order, Bonuses, Exclusive Content

When you purchase a used game you aren’t thinking about who profits from your expense but you product for less.  Buying a used title from Gamestop, ebay, or any other business causes the profits from that exchange go to that person or company, and those who published and created the game don’t. This doesn’t mean that all developers despise used games. According to Randy Pitchford, in a recent interview with IGN, “I don’t hate used games, I actually love it” stating that he wants something that would benefit developers, publishers, and consumers. Mr. Pitchford then attempts to discuss that experiencing a new game for the first time encourages a consumer to pay a high price for that adventure, but once completed that value diminishes and makes that person willing to sell that product to another for a lower price, causing that studio to lose a customer. This can cause layoffs and those who want these people to create new games in the future are lost to another studio or unemployed.

Pre-order bonuses have become so common for the game industry that business such as Gamestop, Bestbuy, and Amazon encourage consumers to buy the new game on the day of its release from there company by offering exclusive content. People can look to this as an attempt to bully consumers to buy these games on the day of the release rather than waiting till the price is reduced, and excludes content that was specified for that retailer. However pre-ordering a game allows publishers to predict how well a game will sell, allowing for more funding towards marketing and advertisement of the game. Randy Pitchford said in the same interview how Gamestop funded for the pre-order exclusive Creature Slaughter Dome, ensuring people pre-order the game. You shouldn’t look at pre-order content as a way to force you into buying the game at launch but a thank you from the developers for supporting them in creating something that they hope you enjoy.

Used Video Games, Market, Publisher, Developer, Cheap Games, Pre-Order, Bonuses, Exclusive Content

It’s obvious why we purchase used games, it is a cheaper alternative. Not everyone can afford buying a new game new or on the release date but instead wait for the product to be sold and purchase later. With new addition such as day-one content and online passes purchasing used games was already difficult enough with the question that supersedes everything else, “Will it work?”. Let’s be honest people tend to take advantage of others by selling damage goods to unaware targets. Businesses such as Gamestop and Bestbuy have a policy that you can return it if it doesn’t work but when you buy something used there is always a chance may be brought something faulty and with used games that concern is even greater, especially if you don’t plan access all the content on the disc before the return policy becomes void.

Used Video Games, Market, Publisher, Developer, Cheap Games, Pre-Order, Bonuses, Exclusive Content

The used game market has been bombarded by so many difficulties by publishers and developers. Although they are cheaper people may find themselves paying for more than they expected for online passes or finding out that the final level won’t load. Perhaps Mr. Pitchford’s expecting certain stores to pay publishers and developers for the sale of used games that were originally made by them, which will take hold and allow for more positive policies. So next time you buy a used game maybe you shouldn’t only be thinking about how much you are saving.

Adam Siddiqui, NoobFeed
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  • I rarely buy a new game on its release day. 60 bucks is not cheap...thats a days work for some people. Too expensive, especially if I'm not really sure what I'm getting into. There are also too many games to choose from and I want to play them all! Therefore, used it is. Pubs/Devs can suck it up and accept that people are going to buy used OR lower prices; as best as they can of course.

    Don't get me wrong. I DO buy new games but there usually the big dogs that have been hyped up. In this case I know I have a better chance of getting my moneys worth. This year I've preordered Dishonored, AC3, and Halo 4 :0)

    Posted Oct 06, 2012
  • I'll have to agree with Megan here. Not all the games worth $50+ even when they are being called AAA titles. Can't say that I haven't been biased with a review and bought new games where I eventually ended up being disappointed. I sure do miss a few online features but I honestly don't care to whom I'm playing for my copy.
    Posted Oct 06, 2012

  • I bought the collectors edition for Resident Evil 6 (europe collectors) for 250NZD. To me, as a long time RE fan, it was worth every penny. Very mixed reviews on the game and I wouldn't call it a AAA title but it definitely gets a AA from me.

    The main point being for the people who wish to fork out the money on release day or on a collectors edition? Good on them and if you feel yourself as a gamer you are getting your moneys worth and the best experience possible out of the game then woo hoo! If not? Wait until the game drops in price or buy the game used!

    Posted Oct 07, 2012

  • Nice topic. 


    @XboxBetty @Amaya @EtherBOLO

    Well, I usually dont buy new games at full price nor I buy used games. I mean, its not worthy to spend 69.99 Euros on a game that l spend around 20 hours playing it. I prefer to buy new games at a lower price. Sure, there are some ocasions that I buy a game at full price or in Day 1, but it has to be a game of my interess (i.e, Uncharted 2 or Grand Theft Auto IV). 

    Also, my platform is PS3 and currently if you buy an used game with online feature, you need to spend an extra cash for the online pass because it can be used only once. But thats another story...

    Posted Oct 08, 2012

  • Great article.

    Personally, I only buy new games of titles that i would love to have in a different collectors box or if it has interesting preorder bonus. i bought my RE6 special edition was for the extra content. If i were such a fan, i would have waited a while before ordering just the regular game. Recently big game companies have been trying to get rid of the whole used game business as its business they cant control or profit from. Or rather, its a business they want to profit off of. I remember a few months ago talks of making single use, and that if you resell then you would have to buy a new license for it. Unfortunately, its a market i dont see surviving long as things go more digital :/

    Posted Oct 09, 2012

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