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Report: Microsoft and publishers get a cut of used sales

7:00 AM on 05.24.2013

Chris Carter

Reviews Director

Retailers will have to agree to Microsoft's terms

The unveiling of the Xbox One left us with more questions than answers. Specifically, gamers huddled around the issue of used games, wondering if they'll still be able to pick up titles at a cheaper rate, like they've done since the beginning of time.

Well, according to a report by MCV, we may have an idea of what's going to happen sooner than later. Apparently, the way it works is this -- retailers have to agree to terms set forth by Microsoft for used sales (much like credit card retailer agreements). Microsoft's cloud system is integrated into the deal, and when the used game owner hands over the disc, it's wiped from their Xbox Live account. Microsoft and the publisher then take a cut of the sale, and the retail store gets the rest.

So used games will still exist according to this report, but in a crippled state. This basically means that small business are screwed, and said business will either have to not sell used Xbox One games, or mark them up to the point where they can't stay competitive with Microsoft. Small retailers aren't going to agree to the terms set forth by Microsoft if it means splitting a potential small margin pie into three slices.

However, cash rules everything around us, so if Microsoft and publishers are going to win out on this deal, I can see more publishers (cough, EA) wanting to get in on this scheme, and leave platforms (Wii U, cough) that don't adopt it in the dust. Will consumers vote with their wallets and force Microsoft to abandon the policy?

Publishers to receive cut [MCV]

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