Surely they aim to cover all their costs in the initial pricing of their original game sales, and will have done so for years? Isn’t there some sort of incentive provided by MS if you make multiplayer games because it encourages people to buy the XBL Gold membership?
And are GameStop going to lower the prices on second hand EA games because they don’t come with MP functionality for free? I doubt it. They hardly drop the price of second hand games as it is.
I’m a big fan of the Madden series and I buy it almost every year / someone gets it for me for Xmas. But this whole thing feels like a greedy move to me.
If you buy the game new you won’t have to pay anything extra. This payment scheme is for EA (other publishers are planning similar schemes) to make some money from used game sales. At the moment publishers, and therefore developers, make nothing from used game sales.
Some high street stores are rumoured to be promoting second hand copies ahead of original copies because of the greater margin.
The upshot is this. If you buy new you won’t be affected. If you buy used games at the current prices you may end up paying more than if you had bought new. I assume used game retailers will react by dropping the price of used games, but that will likely mean a drop in how much they pay out for trade ins.
Also worth noting that for the time being at least this only affects online content
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