Rumor: Sony has used game ‘solution’ for PlayStation 4, might cancel plans following Xbox One backlash
posted on 05.26.13 at 09:19 PM EDT by (@salromano)
Make your voice heard on Twitter.

Sony was preparing a used games DRM for PlayStation 4, but might cancel those plans following the reaction to this week’s Xbox One announcement, the latest internet rumors suggest. 

The story begins on this week’s episode of GameTrailers’ Bonus Round, in which host Geoff Keighley, discussing Xbox One’s used games policy, says, “Sony, I think has been seen as this sort of white knight, so far, who’s not going to restrict used games. Based on some of the things I’m hearing, I don’t think that’s entirely true.”

On NeoGAF, user and supposed insider FamousMortimer, whose sources were spot on about the contents of February’s PlayStation Meeting, elaborates on Keighley’s statement.

“The jist of it is that Sony is listening to the backlash that Microsoft (MS) is getting and they are basing decisions off of this,” he said. “I would assume MS is also, but I don’t know that for sure. But I can say, for sure, that the past week’s PR nightmare for MS has not been lost on Sony and they, in fact, do have a used game ‘solution’ working and have been going back and forth for months on whether to use it. This past week is pushing them strongly into ‘Yeah, let’s not use that.’ ”

In a separate post, he said, “I just heard on Friday that [the used games DRM] wasn’t [coming]. I didn’t want to come right out and post about it because leak-y individuals like myself are getting a bit too much attention. and I don’t care about myself, but I’m not really looking to get my friends into trouble. But I’ve confirmed it with a second person so I got dumb and posted it.”

While Sony is “leaning towards” not adding the used games DRM to the new console, a little more motivation never hurts. Here are some key Sony execs you may want to send your comments to on Twitter:

  • Shuhei Yoshida (@yosp) – President, SCE Worldwide Studios.
  • John Koller (@jpkoller) – Head of Hardware Marketing, SCEA.
  • Guy Longworth (@luckylongworth) – Senior Vice President of Marketing and PlayStation Network, SCEA.
  • Scott Rohde (@rohdescott) – SVP of Product Development, SCE Worldwide Studios America, SCEA.

When tweeting, it is recommended to use the Twitter hashtags #PS4NoDRM and #PS4USEDGAMES. Rohde, in fact, has already posted a semi-response to the influx of tweets. “I love passionate #PlayStation Fans,” he exclaimed.


Just for fun, let’s take a look at some of FamousMortimer’s other recent rumors that have yet to be proven true or false. The subject here is Xbox One-exclusives:

  • Dead Rising 3
  • Hawken (plus PC)
  • League of Legends (plus PC)
  • Respawn’s new game
  • Unannounced Insomniac game

We will likely find out the validity of these rumors come E3. Press conferences begin on June 10 and the show officially runs from June 11 to 13.

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  • KingKellogg The Waffle Haggler
    • Raiyu

      Well technically the Xbone can play used games too.

      And it doesn’t hurt to put in a tweet or two to express how much we dislike DRM on the PS4.

      • KingKellogg The Waffle Haggler

        Good point.

        just to be safe

  • Dark_N11
    • jujubee88

      Edit: Whoops. I better not curse here.

      I’ll just say I don’t get it. I never saw “Watchmen”. :)

    • PrinceHeir

      what movie is this? :D

  • DesmaX

    But how would that work, anyway?

    I mean, it’s already confirmed that the PS4 would be able to work without Internet, so how would it authenticate used games?

    Oh well, guess all we gotta do is wait for confirmation, and it woudn’t hurt to log in my twitter account

    • adhesive

      Probably something primitive like confirmation codes that come with new games, like they use with DLC right now.

      • bloodiOS

        Wouldn’t that also require the internet? Or am I misunderstanding something?

      • DesmaX

        But that would still require the internet in order to work. And after PSP Go failure, I think Sony mean it

        But It could be a thing that Publishers could put in their games…

    • $18114340

      Saying that the PS4 “works without internet connections” is a pretty vague claim when you think about it. What does that really mean? The Xbox One “works without an internet connection”. It just doesn’t let you do anything.

      The thing is, we still don’t know the specifics about this console. As it is, it’s just a rumor, of course. I think that the only thing we can realistically do at this point is wait and see. The damage has been done by the Xbox One event and I bet if this story is true, then Sony executives have probably already made their decision one way or another. Further outrage based purely on speculation probably won’t do much at this point.

  • Torbjorn Olsson

    Personally I think developers/publishers deserve a small percentage of the outrages prices Gamestop sell their used games for compared to the prices they buy them at.

    • bloodiOS

      But wouldn’t Gamestop simply factor in that percentage then raise the price of used games?

      • Sevyne

        If Gamestop raised the price any further on used games they’d be the same price as a new one. I don’t even know why anyone would buy used from them. You only save like $5-10. It’s horrible.

        • bloodiOS

          Then I guess they’ll just be actively protesting the practice then, because I don’t see these guys as the sort that would stay quiet about having their profit lessened.

    • Zero

      What’s good for them is not necessarily good for us.

    • Christian Meredith

      Problem is then that used car dealers and second hand book stores will have to hunt down the original manufacturers, publishers and authors and give them a cut of their profit too according to that scheme :P

  • Jimmy Dean

    I don’t think this is something that can be changed at the last minute for Sony but we’ll see. I’m betting it won’t be mandatory but up to the publishers, which means it’s going to be as prevalent as online passes if not more so.

  • DrForbidden

    I’m not surprised if this turns out to be true. Sony is a for-profit company after all. Still, it would be good if they realize that what they had planned wouldn’t be accepted by the majority of consumers, and take steps to alleviate the problem.

  • PrinceHeir

    be careful out there Sony!

  • bloodiOS

    Sony basically waited and let Microsoft go first to see how things would turn out before making their move. Nice. Let’s hope that they won’t fumble at the last minute.

  • Raiu

    So now I found a reason to use twitter after all….

  • MogCakes

    The point of all this uproar is that the voice of consumers are heard. Don’t just sit back and accept it, make your voice heard and let them know this is NOT okay! Don’t be a defeatist.

  • SpongebobGAF

    #PS4NoDRM #PS4USEDGAMES spread the message to Son

    • Kazriko Redclaw

      I’m not too concerned about used games, but I absolutely want a way to buy my PS4 games in 20 years and play them. With most older consoles, used is the only way to get older titles.

  • Boke18

    Guys it would be amazing if you took to the twitter effort. We helped gaming sites pick up this story now lets do our part and let these Sony officials know we don’t want DRM or the blockage of used games.

  • Panda

    I wonder how many of the 15 “exclusives” are also on PC if this turns out to be true. Good to see Insomniac getting some work.

  • Sieghardt

    Thanks for mentioning the twitter campaign, good people here :) Hope it works, region free too

  • Kurisu Makise

    I did my part on Twitter, 17 more days left to go everyone.

  • Zero

    Sony! You better not do this crap! We don’t want DRM on any console!

    I thought we were moving past this… I thought the video game industry already learnt their lesson.

    DRM doesn’t work. It doesn’t matter what form it takes, it only ends up hurting the folks who actually buy your products.

  • LordKaiser

    I will not enter codes or do anything to play a game. I just want to put a disc in and play.

    • Kazriko Redclaw

      Good news, Sony’s been moving away from codes for awhile. They’ve been using their disc stamping technique for at least a year now.

  • Alkaid

    Okay that headline nearly gave me a heartattack. Considering it’s still early in the morning here on my side … that’s pretty bad. Well… at least I’m wide awake now, so thank you for that. xD

    Hopefully Sony won’t consider a sollution for the console that is consumer unfriendly. I have nothing against the fact that Microsoft tries to cut down the.. let’s call it “Gamestop problem” that’s going around for years. But that war shouldn’t be fought on the back of (potential) customers.

    Money is scarce nowadays and as much as we all like to support the publishers we love and respect from day one, sometimes it’s just not possible. At least not in that extend they would’ve liked us to.
    But what am I talking… we know too little about the new consoles… *sigh*

    Sometimes waiting really is a nasty thing to do.

    • Christian Meredith

      There’s also to a degree a question of rights, e.g. the First Sale doctrine and other things linked with copyright, e.g. Fair use, public domain and so on.

      Sony and MS can sort whatever they like out with retailers, that’s a larger issue of trade partners etc, but if I have a product I’ve bought, I have the right to resell it in normal circumstances (if it’s a matter of public safety though, maybe not :P ).

      Problem is how long MS, Sony, Steam, and so on can continue to argue that a game being functional counts as a non-resellable account-tied service, and not an expected and implied function of the original product and therefore an abuse of consumer trust. The reason though that hasn’t seen much progress is because in legal terms it’s hard to define “shonky disconnect between consumer and manufacturer” :-/

  • shogunknight

    God please no, Sony dont. Are the trying to do this to save devs? Because its quite simple, there has to be an “agreement” between devs and consumers in making these decisions. Do not make decisions based on devs alone because at the end its the gamers that would buy the games. I dont even want the used game feature brought up anymore but what if they made their dics accept maybe 5 or more consoles and after that it needs an activation code? Thats why there has to be an agreement because right now i completely DISAGREE to this notion, I will NOT buy a console because of this.

    • Namekaze_Minato

      simply ask the court for a VAT on the sale of used games; instead of screwing us over.

      • shogunknight

        Exactly, a ‘valid’ solution. Microsofts decision is way too selfish and unthoughtful

  • usrev

    restricting used games would basically kill the console software market. I hope only 1 company does it. it will be interesting to see how much less money games bring in when no one has credit to buy their next game.

    think about it, would you spend $60 on a game that has average reviews and a demo that was fun but not amazing? probably not, but lets say you have $100 in store credit from trading in a few games you don’t play anymore, you might bite on it.

    the only thing restricting used games does is solidify the hold on already established titles like COD, Battlefield, Fifa, madden etc.

    if sony restricts used games I won’t touch the ps4, no matter the games.

  • David

    The Wii U wasn’t restricting used game in Gen 8 before it was cool.

  • AdamBoy64

    Well, if this is true, at least something good came of Microsoft’s reveal.

  • LeSamurai

    Smartest thing for sony to do, is just wait until the E3, and then say on stage on their conf (which is after the MS conf) no we will not have a used game DRM. So they will not give time to MS to prepare. Just like GDDR5.

  • Lelouch Vi Britannia

    Already sent to all 4 on Twitter

  • Keegs79

    I think Respawn game is just a timed exclusive just like how Bioshock was. I don’t think for an instant EA is going to give up publishing it on the PS4.

  • Lelouch Vi Britannia

    Also sent to all 4 #TalesofXilliaduringSONYE3Conference

  • Dorhen

    Don’t forget : #PS4RegionFree

    • Hakimur Rashid

      wait ps4 is region free?

    • Namekaze_Minato

      wait the ps4 is region free?

      • Dorhen

        We don’t know yet. That’s why we must not forget this hashtag.

        • Kazriko Redclaw

          The PS3 was not technically region free, but it was for the most part functionally region free. This has been the case for their last 3 consoles, I don’t see them changing it now.

          • LordKaiser

            PS and PS2 where region locked.

            • Kazriko Redclaw

              Yes, but PS3, PSP, and PSVita are all functionally region free. The consoles they released in 1994 and 2000 are probably less like their 2013 console than the ones released in 2004, 2006, and 2011.

  • BigDix

    The most outrageous thing in this article to me is the rumor that Dead Rising 3 would be exclusive to Xbox One. That’s just fucking lame… I mean it’s one thing when you’re talking either original IP or a third-party franchise that’s always been manufacturer-exclusive, but for Dead Rising to be a 360 exclusive, then multiplatform, THEN back to Xbox exclusive is just totally awkward and ass backwards.

    • extermin8or2

      not as bad as the idea that insomniac games might be making an xbox exclusive title- if that’s true I officially wont buy any of their games for a decent price for several year…. Would rather wait. Would be like spitting in their playstation owned fas faces.

  • Zeidust

    I’m cool with current system where the physical game comes with a multiplayer code, and if you buy it used, you have to pay for the code.

  • Josh Frost

    I guarantee there will never be an xbox exclusive insomniac game. They have been making nothing but playstation games for years

    • Jakintosh

      They just released Fuse, a multiplatform game that was launched on PS3 and 360. Perhaps with their track record, Fuse was expected to sell well and they may have cut a deal with Microsoft in their newfound “multiplatform lifestyle”, but after the dismal reception of Fuse, I’m not so sure that’s a great idea. Honestly though, I believe the failure of Fuse was almost directly related to EA being tied to the project, so if they weren’t the publisher on a new game and it was Microsoft, it might not suck so bad.

  • Willgaea

    I have only heard of the word DRM only once before this and it was during the release of the new Sim City game. I have tried to look up what it meant but I’m still lost. Anyone care to fill me in?

  • ddsfan2

    I really hope that Sony doesn’t follow through with such policies. I’m already very unhappy about the news of the Xbox One once every 24 hours online requirement, and if Sony does something similar, I will probably just get a Wii U before the others… (and possibly avoid both the Xbox One and PS4 altogether)

    The consoles of this generation (as in PS3, 360, etc) are already restrictive enough from a consumer’s perspective, (can’t use CFW safely without getting banned from PSN or XBL, making fan translations almost impossible, or at least aimed at a miniscule user base) and I’m still not convinced that Japanese developers will take advantage of anything more powerful than the Vita, let alone the PS3. Small things like avoiding DRM altogether will go a long way in convincing me that next-gen is the way to go.

    Also, not having backwards compatibility on both systems is really annoying, because PS3 and 360 won’t be emulated anytime soon (yet another reason why fan translations won’t be very common for both systems).

  • Kazriko Redclaw

    I have absolutely no doubt that the capability to do this will be in the PS4. The capability to do what the Xb1’s doing is already in the PS3. They use it for things like Vita crossbuy copies included with discs of PS3 games. Just like the PS3 has the capability to do region locking, but hardly any publishers make use of that feature.

    The downside of the Xb1 and PS3’s way of doing used game prevention is that it requires an internet connection. That’s one reason why they hadn’t used it extensively. (This is a bit fuzzy though because MS hasn’t told us exactly how they’re going to do it. PS3’s works by having a unique code stamped into each disc that can be checked against the network. The XB1 is rumored to have a QR code or MS Tag style piece of paper that you hold up to the Kinect, but who knows if that rumor is correct.)

    Sony has patents on doing this sort of thing entirely offline with no internet access needed. I’m 90% sure that they’ll include this in the hardware, but also about 80% sure that it won’t be mandatory for publishers to use it, and will hopefully be discouraged.