Next Xbox might not allow you to play used games

I’m not a huge purchaser of used games, but depending on the how and why this could be one more reason for me not to buy the next Xbox.

One of the ways they could do this discussed in the article is by going digital download only. In the last year my purchases of games via Steam’s digital download service has increased dramatically and all of those games can’t be resold to anyone else. The only reason I don’t have a problem with that is because the games I bought typically were on sale for $15 or less (with most being $5 purchases). Many of them were $50 to $60 when they were released and I was perfectly happy to wait until they were $5 in order to give up my physical copy and ability to resell the disc. It also doesn’t hurt that Steam doesn’t have an issue with letting you re-download any titles you own after you’ve restaged your PC, but that’s less of an issue on the Xbox. For me to even consider going that route on a console would require that the cost of the games drop considerably either from the very start or within a reasonable amount of time after release.

As I said I don’t tend to buy a lot of used games nor do I tend to sell a lot of my used games, but I like having the option to do so. I have some original PlayStation titles that are considered collectors items now that sell for a decent amount on eBay. You want to take that option away then I want something in return.

Of course, this is largely a moot point because I probably won’t buy the next Xbox for the same reasons I don’t own a current Xbox or its predecessor. But if Sony is thinking of a similar scheme with the next PlayStation then the same rules would apply. #seb #videogames #Xbox #PS3

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How the next Xbox could stop you from playing used games
A recent Kotaku post cites “one reliable industry source” to suggest that the still-unannounced successor to Microsoft’s Xbox 360 will somehow prevent used games from being played on the system. The idea remains an unconfirmed rumor, of course, but it’s something that members of the game industry have floated repeatedly in the past. It’s also a move that would likely find hefty support from publishers looking for a way to stop what they see as erosion of their profits thanks to used games (th…

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Games I’m Looking Forward To: “Uncharted 3: Drake’s Deception”

The Uncharted series of games is one of the best reasons to own a PS3 with the first two installments being absolutely a blast to play. Needless to say I’ve been awaiting word on the third installment for some time now and Naughty Dog just released a trailer for it during the Spike Video Game Awards. Check it:

The only downside is that it’s almost a full year away from release. Still, at least I know what I’ll be hoping for next Christmas.

“Little Big Planet 2” headed to the PS3.

The folks at Media Molecule have announced a sequel to one of the more amazing PS3 games: Little Big Planet 2.

I was pretty excited about the first game and wrote about it quite a bit back during it’s development, but I never got around to buying it. I will have to make sure I don’t make that mistake with the sequel. Details are short at the moment, but we should hear more at the upcoming E3 event. Based on the trailer alone, though, it looks like they’ve got another hit on their hands.

“Uncharted 2: Among Thieves” reviews start to hit the net.

And they all pretty much say it’s a must buy. Here’s a typical example from the folks at X-Play:

I loved the first game and have been looking forward to the sequel for some time now. Not only is the single player game supposed to be amazing, but the promise of co-op and multiplayer means I’ll be playing it long after I finish finding all the hidden treasures in the single player game. It doesn’t hit store shelves officially until October 13th and that puts it mighty close to when I stop buying crap for myself because of the approaching holiday season. But can I really wait until Christmas to get my hands on a title this good? At least the multiplayer demo has been released on the PSN network today so I’ll be able to tide myself over with that small sampling of awesomeness until I can get the game proper.

This is the type of game that made buying the PS3 the right decision for me. You can keep your Halos. I’ll be happily treasure hunting with Nathan Drake.

Sony drops price on PS3 to $299 and introduces new slim model.

It’s been a long running rumor and today at GamesCon Sony finally made it official. First they’re dropping the price of the PS3 to $299 effective immediately. That’s for the current 80GB model. Additionally they’re introducing the new PS3 Slim which will come with a 120GB hard drive for the same price.

That’s still going to be too expensive for some people and it’s clear that Sony is cognizant of the ongoing debate over the price of the PS3. The following video of the announcement goes to great lengths to point out that the price is now half of what it was when the PS3 was first introduced and the console itself is only three years old and will likely have a 10 year life. I do remember choking on my lunch when the initial price was announced and it took a long time for it to come down to a price point I was willing to buy it at, but I must say it’s been worth every penny so far. We use it as much as a media playback device (Blu-ray movies, streaming DivX from PC) as we do a gaming system and does both amazingly well.

Maybe it’s just me, but the new Slim model is fugly as hell. I’m really glad I bought one of the last of the original 60GB models before they all sold out as it looks much nicer than the new Slim model. Granted the new design is part of what’s allowing for the new price, but did they have to take out all the styling to do it? If you’ve been waiting to pick up a PS3 then I’d suggest grabbing one of the remaining 80GB models at the new price point while you can.

Games I’m looking forward to: “The Last Guardian.”

I’ll make this the last video game related post I do for awhile, but it was too incredible to pass up. Two of my favorite PS2 games were Ico and Shadow of the Colossus both of which were minimalist in their approach, epic in their scope, and stunningly beautiful experiences to play. Shadow was particularly amazing because you played a young man on a quest to save his true love from death by tracking down and slaying 16 giant colossi. There was no Heads Up Display showing your health or where to go next. There were no characters to interact with outside of your loyal horse. The only “enemies” to speak of were the colossi themselves and it becomes clear as you progress that they aren’t really enemies at all. In fact by the end of the game, if you’re anything like me, you may have some feelings of regret over what you had to destroy in order to save the woman you love. That’s part of what made SotC so amazing.

Now the team is back with a new game for the PS3 called The Last Guardian. The teaser trailer follows and it is amazing what they’ve done with the power of the PS3. It features a boy and a giant dragon/kitty/monster thing that looks believably real. Check it:

I’d be remiss if I didn’t admit I got somewhat emotional watching that trailer and do so every time I see it. This looks like it’s going to be incredible and I can’t wait to get my hands on it.

Games I’m looking forward to: “Uncharted 2: Among Thieves”

I just finished the first game – Uncharted: Drake’s Fortune – and loved every minute of it so I’ve been looking forward to word on a sequel. The first game was amazing in how the fights played out, especially melee, and the environments that you explored. It was everything that the past few Tomb Raider games should have been, but weren’t. It set the bar for what an action/platformer game should be and now the sequel looks like it’ll set the bar even higher. Here’s the E3 trailer for the game:

After the jump be sure to check out some footage of the actual game play featuring a our heroes being chased through several buildings by a large military helicopter while fighting off gun-toting henchmen. Hell, this is what the last Indiana Jones move should have been.

This is one of the reasons I bought a PS3.

Sony also plans to out-Wii the Wii.

Not content to be the only console system that doesn’t have people jumping around in front of it flailing their arms about like idiots risking potentially expensive television damage, Sony announced it’s own Wii-like motion controller for the PS3 today. Interestingly enough it appears to be taking cues from both Microsoft and Nintendo in that it’s a wand with positioning sensors in it that interacts with the PS3’s Playstation Eye webcam that’s already available. This setup means that the resulting controller is likely to be a lot less expensive than Microsoft’s Project Natal and it will offer a much greater degree of precision – true 1-to-1 sensing – than the Wii-mote. If you already own a Playstation Eye then you’re already halfway toward a new control scheme.

It appears Sony’s system makes use of a colored ball on the end of the wand which the camera locks in on as a control point. The color of the ball can be changed so that more than one wand can be used at the same time. All they had to show today was some tech demos that demonstrated the possible ways one or two wands could be used together. Here’s the first part of the demo with the second part after the jump:

In a way it’s a major compliment to Nintendo that both Microsoft and Sony have felt the need to add some form of Wii-like motion control mechanics to their systems as it’s a tacit acknowledgment of the impact the Wii has had on the industry. What’s interesting is how Microsoft appears to be trying to make their control system much more comprehensive where as Sony is taking the basic Wii functionality and improving it greatly. Ultimately it looks like you’re going to have the option for getting out of your chair and waggling about regardless of which system you own. Sony plans to have their new controller on the market early next year. Don’t forget to watch the second part after the jump.

Games I’m looking forward to: “[Prototype]”

Along with inFamous, this game makes it a good time to be a PS3 owner:

In Prototype, players take control of Alex Mercer – a dark, genetically mutated shape-shifter with no memory of his past, hell-bent on solving the mystery of his existence as he tears through a densely populated New York City moving with Parkour-style fluidity and consuming anything that gets in his way.

‘Deceive or Destroy’ gameplay allows gamers the choice to either blend in with the population and covertly progress through the story, or fully unleash Alex’s powers, and move through New York City like a walking slaughterhouse, taking control of military vehicles, and causing destruction at every turn.

Here’s the opening cinematic from the game:

Definitely a bloodier take on the newly empowered badass out to figure out what happened to him theme that both games share. It’ll be interesting to see how well each implements the concepts they’re employing. [Prototype] is due out on June 9th.

“Call of Duty: World at War” Map Pack 1 hits PS3 and Xbox 360 today.

A collection of maps for the excellent FPS Call of Duty: World at War hits the Xbox 360 and PS3 online stores today. It includes three new multiplayer maps named Nightfire, Knee Deep and Station, but more importantly it includes a new Co-op Zombie map called Verrückt. This brings the number of zombie co-op maps up to two and it brings with it a bunch of enhancements the first zombie map didn’t have such as more weapons and vending machines that dispense drinks that give you useful perks. Here’s the trailer for it:

Hoo boy, but that does look fun! In honor of the launch they’re doing a full week of Double XP and you have a chance of playing against some of the developers who brought us the game (a full list of PSN IDs is available on the Playstation Blog). The map back will set you back $9.99 on the PS3 and 800 Points on the Xbox 360.

Unfortunately for me I play the PC version so it’s going to be a bit long before I can enjoy the new maps. They’re working on a new patch and the DLC as I type, but there’s no word on when it’ll be available. Still it’ll get here before too long and then I’ll be happy.