PlayStation 4 is used-game friendly, has no online authentication

Sony has just announced at their E3 2013 press conference that the PlayStation 4 will be friendly towards used games. The company will not impose any restrictions on what you can do with the game discs you purchase; you can sell them to other people, lend it to friends, trade it in at retail or even keep it forever. They've even posted an instructional video on how you can share games between friends.

The company also announced that the console will not require you to check-in online when you have a disc-based game. "It won't stop working if you haven't authenticated within 24 hours," Jack Tretton, CEO of Sony Computer Entertainment of America stated at the conference, taking a direct jab at the Xbox One's restrictions. A huge slide at the event also said that the console "doesn't need to be connected".

Neowin's E3 2013 coverage is sponsored by Alienware

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Can we be sure that Sony is outside the scope of the NSA? With Microsoft being one of the companies that the NSA has direct server access to, then i guess they will most definitely want to be targeting Xbox Live users as well...

Even if the drm ends up the same as Microsoft's, it's still $100 cheaper. I don't give a crap about the Kinect, plus no "let me see your papers!" BS every 24hrs. At this point, I'd buy a PS4 just to spite Microsoft and their vision for the future.

The thing that gets me is that Microsoft and Sony have to know that these intrusive forms of DRM would be unpopular with buyers. They could've both told publishers "no" and none of this would be an issue.

the unit itself is for sure, but devs will add restrictions and drm and this will be no different than the xbox one. MS were just more upfront about it and will ultimately get better exclusives because of this, Sony just said what people wanted to hear and hide it all in the fine print. This was confirmed by Sony US today that 3rd party devs are free to add what ever they feel to their games, so if you have a major title that is on both consoles you can bet that both will have drm.

Between the price and a supposed partnership with XBMC, I might make my next console an OUYA.

At least to tide me over til the dust settles and we see how the X1 and PS4 work in the real world. I'm not making a decision until I get reports from users, after the machines are released.

I can't remember the last time I found a Sony based video amusing - that one had me in stiches! Bravo Sony, bravo!

The emphasis here is that this holds true FOR DISC BASED GAMES!

Did any journalist stop and think to ask about non disc based games?

No disk based will be locked to you're account, like steam. This is pretty self explanatory and is USED NOW, with Xbxo 360 and PS3 Market.. it should be no different. Personally i don't care about used game and i really don't go out to video game store anymore because franly, clerks around there are fully retarded so....

It will come down to games. As a software developer (not games mind you, but business is business) I would focus my attention on the platform that protects my content better.

Or all major publishers will implement DRM anyways, invalidating this argument.

So yeah, from the consumer point of view right now, it may look like Sony is winning. But I'll bet that more exclusives, and better games will be released for Xbox. Hell, the launch titles are already better in my opinion. I'm going to say that trend will continue.

Edited by scumdogmillionaire, Jun 11 2013, 3:02pm :

Interesting philosophy, and as it turns out, the correct one. Sony seems to have remembered its past in the BetaMax vs VHS tape war. Microsoft, regrettably, seems to ignore the lessons of history--not only with Windows-8 but also with their new XboxOne.

It is utterly remarkable to me, that going into this, Sony had very little ammunition and then Microsoft gave them a ton... What were you thinking Microsoft?

I don't think so. People are over with having to get up and swap disks to play a different game even though they are installed on the hard drive. That's been a very common complaint with the 360.

Spicoli said,
I don't think so. People are over with having to get up and swap disks to play a different game even though they are installed on the hard drive. That's been a very common complaint with the 360.

I just find that very hard to believe that people are that lazy...

I understand what Microsoft was trying to do, but it is not a bad thing that people get the 4 steps worth of exercise to swap a disc...

Spicoli said,
I don't think so. People are over with having to get up and swap disks to play a different game even though they are installed on the hard drive. That's been a very common complaint with the 360.
Because it's so hard to get up from your seat and swap a disc. Are they the super obese couch potatoes from Pixar's WALL-E?

You do know that Microsoft is also leaving the restrictions up to the publishers, right? To me, Sony isn't being upfront about it, while Microsoft has been honest and open.

I think that what happened here is quite simple in business terms. Prior to the release of a product, a company's marketing team is meant to be listening and gauging the market for feedback.

Regardless on whether there is any merit on the criticism of Xbox One or not, Sony saw an opportunity here to capitalise over this issue for competitive advantage. That doesn't mean Sony might not have a change of heart for future generation of consoles. Let's not forget that Sony did filed for a patent to add RFID chips into discs to prevent to prevent the "uncontrolled" distribution of used discs. Who knows, they might have been even considering dding this restriction on PS4 but decided to retract due to the response they saw for Xbox One.

pirajoc said,
Instead of promoting their console they're bashing the competition,pathetic.

They **ARE** promoting their console by demonstrating what they believe to be a competitive advantage over the competitor.

Technically they're doing both. On the one hand they are answering the questions that the users have. At the same time they are pointing out how different their decisions have been compared to Microsoft. To say that they are just bashing the competition is a bit extreme, though. The consumers had questions in the light of Microsoft's presentation, and Sony answered the questions.

pirajoc said,
This is what stupid people do to seem like they are always right.

There is never black/white right/wrong in marketing. Michael Porter wrote about such approach concerning competitive advantage in the past. I guess he's stupid, and you're the bright one then?

I fail to see how they're bashing the competition. They didn't mention Microsoft or the Xbox One. All they did was reassure their customers that they won't have to authenticate their games and they can share or sell their games without any worries.

They took advantage of an opportunity to gain new customers. Customers that may have bought an Xbox One if it weren't for Microsoft's new policies regarding used games and offline play.

pirajoc said,
Instead of promoting their console they're bashing the competition,pathetic.

They are doing both. And some companies deserve to be bashed for ignoring their community.

In the end, sales will tell.
For now it seems Sony wins the first round.
Let's not forget these consoles aren't out yet, so things could change..

Spicoli said,
I don't think they've won at all. There's absolutely nothing new to make we want to buy this console. The MS approach interests me as a home theater control system.
There's a lot of negativity around the Xbox One. GameTrailers.com has a feature on their site called the GDex which tracks tweets about the Xbox One, PS4, and WiiU. It also takes into account user voting and maybe some other things but it showed that the PS4 was being talked about more on social networks in a positive way than the Xbox One. You can see it here: http://www.gametrailers.com/gdex

The TV features of the Xbox One will only benefit people from the US. In places like Europe or even Canada, the Xbox One is not as enticing. Also, it's $100 more expensive than the PS4 so unless you planned on buying the Kinect you'd get something you didn't really want in the first place.

sony hasn't won anything, once it starts spreading around that when it really comes down to drm ms were more upfront about it then sony.

abecedarian paradoxious said,
Microsoft says to developers: "It's up to you, how you want to handle used games."

Sony says to developers: "We don't care about you and what you want."

Microsoft says to indies : "i hate you, so go f**** *******".
Sony says to indies : "Indie?, Well, welcome you, and don't forget about our free tools".

Memnochxx said,
Good. They should care about what the consumer wants, not what the developer wants.

They should care about both.
Without developers, there will be few games.
Without consumers, there will be few games.

If the developers shoot themselves in their feet, it's who's fault?

It will be very sad to see a PS player get screwed over when he opens a game disc with a paper saying once you activate this code, you will not be able to trade it in, that will be the biggest hit of all, seriously i hope no one does that

mega31 said,
It will be very sad to see a PS player get screwed over when he opens a game disc with a paper saying once you activate this code, you will not be able to trade it in, that will be the biggest hit of all, seriously i hope no one does that

Current games like Fifa do that now for online, so technically no different - they wouldnt do it for single player mode - that's the whole point of not having drm on the ps

So I didn't follow the presentation, but whats going to stop companies releasing games with a serial, and once activated on your account, you can't transfer it? Like PC games. No one is complaining about their steam games that they can't resell. But sure, there are many games on PC that you can resell, but in reality, are those really worth it? Most high profile games have serials. I just hope there will be a healthy success for both Sony and Microsoft, as like many believe, its good for customers.

Juguard said,
So I didn't follow the presentation, but whats going to stop companies releasing games with a serial, and once activated on your account, you can't transfer it? Like PC games. No one is complaining about their steam games that they can't resell. But sure, there are many games on PC that you can resell, but in reality, are those really worth it? Most high profile games have serials. I just hope there will be a healthy success for both Sony and Microsoft, as like many believe, its good for customers.

The point is for me that is that I don't want my games to not work after 24 hours if its not connected to the internet!

I buy 90% of my games new, the used ones are games that are out of print that had a low run anyway. I keep all of my games and never re-sell them. But I'm happy to know that my games are all mine and I can do whatever I want with them, so I'm going PS4. In ten years if my PS4 breaks down (I still have my NES hooked up... I told you, I never re-sell my games!), I'll just be able to find another one and my games will still work.

My Xbox and PS3 are always connected anyway. I never trade in games or buy pre-owned. None of this changes my plans to buy both, thought I would like some more games on the PS4 and the crashing wasn't encouraging

-T- said,
My Xbox and PS3 are always connected anyway. I never trade in games or buy pre-owned. None of this changes my plans to buy both, thought I would like some more games on the PS4 and the crashing wasn't encouraging

To trade games saves you a lot of money but also, it is pretty amusing.

Brony said,

To trade games saves you a lot of money but also, it is pretty amusing.

It might not since the number of likely users will be built into the cost of the media. They'll have one price for downloaded and one price for media.

Ill really be disappointing if there is a catch to this online thing specifically from any third party publisher

Within the half hour that Sony revealed that the PS4 won't have DRM or any restrictions, people have tried to dispute it by saying "that doesn't mean publishers can't implement something!".

I'd rather get a console in which the DRM choices are by-game rather than all-or-nothing. And on top of that, used games, privating selling, and no restrictions from a platform persepctive is just icing on the cake.

You do know that Microsoft is also leaving the restrictions up to the publishers, right? To me, Sony isn't being upfront about it, while Microsoft has been honest and open.

yes any game title that is available for either will have drm protection, don't be so naive, Sony doesn't want to be upfront and puts it in the fine print.

Sony's whole press conference could have just been walk on stage, say that they will allow used games the same as always and that there's no online check in requirement, and then drop the mic and walk off stage, and they STILL would have won E3.

unless Xbox One offers one of those xbox live contracted deals as in you buy the Xbox One for cheap with xbox live subscription ( correct me if i'm wrong on this)

Darth Tigris said,
The difference is Kinect 2.0 is included with every XB1. That's not cheap.

Most gamers don't want to stand up and move around to play games therefore it is a waste of money that will gather dust.

I like to have a choice on whether I buy gimmicks. If I've decided to pay £100 extra and it never gets used, that's on me, forcing me to get it with the console? No.

torrentthief said,

Most gamers don't want to stand up and move around to play games therefore it is a waste of money that will gather dust.

Kinect is impressible but MS screwed it and now they are doing the same.
Anyways, for most xbox user, the kinect is only an expensive microphone

torrentthief said,

Most gamers don't want to stand up and move around to play games therefore it is a waste of money that will gather dust.

I think the popularity of the Wii and the original Kinect says otherwise. I believe the Kinect is still the fastest selling consumer electronics product ever. The sit in the back of a dark room gamers probably not but they're also more likely to use a PC instead of a console.

Torolol said,
i can see many non-fanboy xbox gamers will switch to PS4 already.


Why? The fanboys are the only people who actually care about the restrictions and they aren't indicative of the market. Never have been, never will be.

spenser.d said,


Why? The fanboys are the only people who actually care about the restrictions and they aren't indicative of the market. Never have been, never will be.

I've been xbox through and through since it first came out.. so this is a clean slate for me and I have to admit for the first time in my life, i'm considering a PS4 over the new Xbox because i personally don't like DRM and think it's wrong to put restrictions on used games. I'm interested in playing games, and thats about it - i have Kinect on my 360, used it a few times when i first got it.. now it has 3 inches of dust on it

spenser.d said,


Why? The fanboys are the only people who actually care about the restrictions and they aren't indicative of the market. Never have been, never will be.

Really?!?

Hmm, how about parents at Christmas time who will be a bit if not entirely on budget. They'll look left and see Xbox at $499, and right to the PS4 at $399. They are going to shrug thier shoulders, say Lil Jimmy is gonna have to deal with it, and grab the PS4.

Condere said,

Really?!?

Hmm, how about parents at Christmas time who will be a bit if not entirely on budget. They'll look left and see Xbox at $499, and right to the PS4 at $399. They are going to shrug thier shoulders, say Lil Jimmy is gonna have to deal with it, and grab the PS4.

They could go Nintendo cheaper than both. It's what the kid has asked for that will drive it.

Sony already won this generation. Stupid $100 higher and DRM restriction? Balmer, you lost smart-phones, tablets and now games by your arrogance. You should be fired now.

DRM restriction is still on the PS4; however, it will be in the hand of the publishers.

akkie said,
Sony already won this generation. Stupid $100 higher and DRM restriction? Balmer, you lost smart-phones, tablets and now games by your arrogance. You should be fired now.

I think you missed it. Sony chief clearly stated that any requirement for users to register a game online in order to play it would be left to game publishers.

Gojira77 said,
No it's not. They said no additional DRM. It's Xbone that the DRM will be in the hands of publishers.

Quote from Kotaku: UPDATE: More relief... At a roundtable this morning, Sony's game studios chief, Shuhei Yoshida, told reporters that any requirement for users to register a game online in order to play it would be left to game publishers. Sony won't require that.

Sony is quite smart about that. Now they pass it to publishers. So if there is any issue with restrictions, gamers will go after publishers. However, now instead dealing with one restriction, gamers will have to deal with different restrictions from different publishers.

RFLevis said,
Quote from Kotaku: UPDATE: More relief... At a roundtable this morning, Sony's game studios chief, Shuhei Yoshida, told reporters that any requirement for users to register a game online in order to play it would be left to game publishers. Sony won't require that.

It's the same DRM restriction. It's either authorized by the disc being in the drive or by an online account. I guess if you prefer swapping disc, this is your chance to continue doing that.

MDboyz said,
Sony is quite smart about that. Now they pass it to publishers. So if there is any issue with restrictions, gamers will go after publishers. However, now instead dealing with one restriction, gamers will have to deal with different restrictions from different publishers.


Its the same DRM restriction the PS3 has. Hasnt been a problem before, why is it a problem now?

yes all games made by 3rd party devs (like EA or whatever it is) are free to add whatever restrictions they like to the games. So I would say if these same games are drm on the xbox one they will be drm protected via the disk on ps4. Devs will not want you paying one time for a game then sharing it with 60 of your friends, nice marketing stunt sony but all in all it will be the same as the xbox for majority of games.

I think they were pretty slick about this. If you notice, they make it very clear they are talking about DISC-based games. In the coming years, we'll probably see more games being released as digital-distribution-only.

thats ok knowbody trades digital downloads you know that before you download them but all games will be on disc for the life of the console

Gojira77 said,
Aaaaaaand Sony just won this gen.

Good thing they're charging for multiplayer now. They need a fresh database of valid credit card numbers for hackers.

I bought a Xbox in 2001… I bought a 360 in 2006… I won't buy a Xbox One. Sorry Microsoft, you ****ed up badly with your DRM and used games policies… and I won't support it.

and 499$ vs 399$ is a total rip-off!

I actually prefer installing games like Xbox one since the game agents can queue up matches and allow me to instantly switch games I'm playing. I don't care for the 24hr call home but I can't stand any requirement to have slow spinning media or disks to pkay. I want games, content and seem less experiences.

Good luck Sony, looks like you will need it.

I'm sure that, like now, you can just download your games on PSN and install them directly and be able to go offline. After all, Sony said that digital versions would be available day and date with boxed versions. So you can have your dream.

korupt_one said,
you can turn Kinect of, check your facts.

When I can disconnect it and still be able to use the console, let me know.

You can do the four things on that first picture with Xbox. You can also do a lot more because of it. And they have more exclusives.

looks like i was right this morning
nothing you can say will change the FACT PS4 will and is going to sell more because of this.

poor microsoft

seriously did you not watch sonys live event they just Destroyed microsoft .

but i understand what site i am on so ill leave it at that.

CaptainBeno said,
seriously did you not watch sonys live event they just Destroyed microsoft .

but i understand what site i am on so ill leave it at that.

Dude lets be honest, the presentation was absolute crap.

CaptainBeno said,
seriously did you not watch sonys live event they just Destroyed microsoft .

but i understand what site i am on so ill leave it at that.

We must have been watching different things or you've got your Sony tinted glasses on.
I'm open to both consoles but Sony are yet to impress. Not giving up just yet though

That's good news, but I want some clarification. It says "The company also announced that the console will not require you to check-in online when you have a disc-based game." so does need to "check in" for games on your hard drive?

This needs to be addressed, as I believe it is probably the case. Either that, or the PS4 will require you to switch discs/always have the game disc in to play.

Considering I have a reliable Internet connection because I live in 2013, the benefit of not needing to switch discs on the One outweighs the "downfall" of having to phone home every day.

Mulsivaas said,

Considering I have a reliable Internet connection because I live in 2013, the benefit of not needing to switch discs on the One outweighs the "downfall" of having to phone home every day.

That depends on where you live at in 2013, US internet infrastructure is bad in different parts of the country.

Of course. The game is being authorized by the disc, so it will only be disc games and it has to be in the drive when you play it. The only other way would be an 800 number or something you call to install a key to lock it to the hardware. They couldn't be using that model because that prevents transfers.

THe problem is now they give publishers the freedom to set whatever drm they want, at least with Microsoft there is a guideline, i only hope they dont get carried away from this publishers can decide stuff

THEN DON'T BUY IT! My god...

I don't say this as a fan of Sony or anything, but as a PC gamer who doesn't buy stupid ass games like SimCity and Diablo III just to bitch about how locked down they are.

They had that with the PS3 as well and look where they are now.

I'll prob get XBox One first because I already have 3 years of live pre-paid and don't really want to waste it but who knows. In either direction it is a clean slate.

mega31 said,
THe problem is now they give publishers the freedom to set whatever drm they want, at least with Microsoft there is a guideline, i only hope they dont get carried away from this publishers can decide stuff

Many companies won't add drm, just like they don't with the pc. Also these consoles probably won't be cracked for 18 months+ so there is no point putting drm on games until the consoles are cracked as you will just be annoying gamers for no reason.

Games that have restricted drm will be boycotted by quite a portion of gamers just like they do with sim city/diablo etc.

I'm kind of wondering the same thing... never had a desire to even check out PS, but I can't play my old 360 games anyway. Maybe it's time to check out a different ecosystem.

frett said,
I'm kind of wondering the same thing... never had a desire to even check out PS, but I can't play my old 360 games anyway. Maybe it's time to check out a different ecosystem.

I've been thinking the same thing. But I will wait. There is a lot of old games I haven't played for the PC yet which I think I'm set for years to come.

Somebody on this site will figure out how to make this into a bad thing because it wasn't a decision made by Microsoft.

As a fan of Sony, it seems I'll be continuing to stick with their gaming console.

Gerowen said,
Somebody on this site will figure out how to make this into a bad thing because it wasn't a decision made by Microsoft.

As a fan of Sony, it seems I'll be continuing to stick with their gaming console.


For some reason it reminds me of windows linux war. Linux is free and shared which is not a bad thing but no developer is supposed to make money out of it and just because of that it will fail. I like to play for free just like everybody else but you see game makers has gone bankrupt because of piracy and sharing. I like good games as much as free games. I don't see good games as much these years just because of sharing. Of course you are free to choose but I choose good game not the free one to support developers and game makers.

Gerowen said,
Somebody on this site will figure out how to make this into a bad thing because it wasn't a decision made by Microsoft.

As a fan of Sony, it seems I'll be continuing to stick with their gaming console.


I like to own my games on disc to install it quickly, but I don't like using it when I play. By the looks of it, when you have a disc-based game on PS4 you need to swap discs like it is today, which is a pain in the a**. If a check-in is all it requires for me to play non-stop(no disc swapping) and sharing disc-free with my family, then it's a no brainer. But I know it doesn't fit that well with everyone. Different people, different needs.

You're definitely have to swap disks. The DRM is the same but it's on the disk verse in an on-line account. If you didn't you could just install and start passing it around to all your friends to install.

S3P€hR said,

Linux is free and shared which is not a bad thing but no developer is supposed to make money out of it

All the devs being paid to develop the linux kernel and userland tools beg to disagree, although I don't see how that relates with whether game studios should have the exclusive privilege of double dipping for a good that was sold only once.

S3P€hR said,

For some reason it reminds me of windows linux war. Linux is free and shared which is not a bad thing but no developer is supposed to make money o


There's a big difference here. Linux in the desktop market has around 1% market share. Sony curently has sold close to as much PS3 as MS sold Xbox 360 worldwide.