EA on next-gen second-hand block


Electronic Arts’ chief financial officer Blake Jorgensen has said that the market is moving towards always-on connectivity and that any potential next-gen ban on second-hand games could be a double-edged sword.

Gamasutra reports that Jorgensen covered a range of topics related to the next generation of consoles at the Goldman Sachs Technology and Internet Conference in San Francisco yesterday.

Responding to questions prompted by our recent story on the next Xbox, the EA exec noted that while the publisher would welcome being able to sell every game full-price, it could damage the wider games buying ecosystem.

“It’s one of these classic double-edged swords,” said Jorgensen. “In one way the used game business has been critical for the health of the retail channel, and having a healthy retail channel is an important thing for us.”

“Would we like to sell everything at full price and not have a used game market? Sure. But I think the used game market’s a little like any other kind of market where it creates liquidity. The fact is, that liquidity benefits us in some fashion. So if someone goes in and trades in a game, there’s a good chance they’re going to buy another one of our games. And so if there’s a liquid market, I think that that’s not a bad thing at all.”

He added that there will always be tension between game publishers’ desire to eliminate second-hand and consumer demand for the preowned marketplace. “I can’t really comment on where the next generation boxes are going to be relative to used games. I will say that the trend in the business is to have that always-on connectivity and connect with a customer, and to the extent that the software identifies a certain customer is going to create some issues going down the road in the used game market. But I do believe that the consumer likes it, and it’s been good for the retail channel.”

You can read more about the next Xbox here, and our analysis on why Microsoft wants to kill second-hand here.