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You Can Buy Used Games On Xbox One, But There’s A Catch

Can you trade in Xbox One games? Can you play Xbox One games on a friend’s console? Will there be a fee to transfer games from one Xbox One to the other? All these questions and more have finall...
You Can Buy Used Games On Xbox One, But There’s A Catch
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  • Can you trade in Xbox One games? Can you play Xbox One games on a friend’s console? Will there be a fee to transfer games from one Xbox One to the other? All these questions and more have finally been answered.

    After weeks of conflicting reports out of Microsoft, the Redmond-based company released a document on Thursday that details how Xbox One game licensing works. In short, used games are possible on the Xbox One. There’s a whole lot of caveats though:

  • Buy the way you want—disc or digital—on the same day: You’ll be able to buy disc-based games at traditional retailers or online through Xbox Live, on day of release. Discs will continue to be a great way to install your games quickly.
  • Access your entire games library from any Xbox One—no discs required: After signing in and installing, you can play any of your games from any Xbox One because a digital copy of your game is stored on your console and in the cloud. So, for example, while you are logged in at your friend’s house, you can play your games.
  • Share access to your games with everyone inside your home: Your friends and family, your guests and acquaintances get unlimited access to all of your games. Anyone can play your games on your console–regardless of whether you are logged in or their relationship to you.
  • Give your family access to your entire games library anytime, anywhere: Xbox One will enable new forms of access for families. Up to ten members of your family can log in and play from your shared games library on any Xbox One. Just like today, a family member can play your copy of Forza Motorsport at a friend’s house. Only now, they will see not just Forza, but all of your shared games. You can always play your games, and any one of your family members can be playing from your shared library at a given time.
  • Trade-in and resell your disc-based games: Today, some gamers choose to sell their old disc-based games back for cash and credit. We designed Xbox One so game publishers can enable you to trade in your games at participating retailers. Microsoft does not charge a platform fee to retailers, publishers, or consumers for enabling transfer of these games.
  • Give your games to friends: Xbox One is designed so game publishers can enable you to give your disc-based games to your friends. There are no fees charged as part of these transfers. There are two requirements: you can only give them to people who have been on your friends list for at least 30 days and each game can only be given once.
  • Well, that’s certainly interesting. It seems that Microsoft is washing its hands of the matter and leaving it entirely in the hands of the publishers. That has a number of gamers, consumer rights advocates and retailers unhappy with the situation.

    For gamers, they feel that this is a big slap in the face. Those who frequent /r/gaming on Reddit have filled the entire front page with nothing but Xbox One macros calling out the console on for its excessive DRM, required Internet connectivity and anti-consumer practices. Here’s one of our favorites from pf-rpanderson:

    Xbox One Used Game Policy

    For consumer rights advocates, the Xbox One represents the final nail in the coffin for the traditional games industry. NeoGAF user faceless007 said it best in a discussion about the Xbox One’s used game policy:

    The industry does not come first; consumers do. I have no sympathy for an industry that cannot properly stumble its way around a viable secondhand market like every other mature industry in the world… If this industry can’t find a way to make money off the primary market — even with DLC and exclusive pre-order content and HD re-releases and map packs and online passes and annualized sequels and “expanding the audience” and AAA advertising and forced multiplayer — then, if I may be so blunt, fuck it. It doesn’t deserve our money in the first place.

    As for retailers, the section that says only participating retailers may deal in used games has some independent retailers concerned. Customers in the U.S. may not be accustomed to the idea of an independent game retailer as GameStop reigns supreme, but it’s far more prevalent in Europe. Those retailers have come forward with concerns that Microsoft’s used game program will only allow large retailers to participate in buy back programs.

    On a final note, Microsoft says that loaning and renting games won’t be available at launch. Services like GameFly are certainly not going to like that, but Microsoft says it’s having discussions with partners on the matter.

    The Xbox One is likely to have some great games, and I’m sure we’ll be wowed at E3. That being said, these new terms have definitely left a sour taste in the mouth of most gamers. Not to mention the recently leaked PRISM surveillance system, which Microsoft is a part of, has some not even remotely interested in buying the new console.

    [Image: EnderDom via Reddit]

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