And so it begins. French publisher Ubisoft said during its Tuesday earnings call that it is closely watching EA’s "$10 solution" to monetize used games. Ubisoft Chief Financial Officer Alain Martinez told conference call participants that Ubisoft "will probably follow that line at sometime in the future." He added that most of the games that the company plans to release next year will "have downloadable content available from the start."
EA’s initiative to monetize used game sales is called "Project $10" and the basic idea is to get consumers who buy a used copy of a game at places like Gamestop to spend extra money one a $10 one-time code to get additional content that is basically free to those who buy that same game new.
But EA is even more aggressive when it comes to its sports titles; the company announced "Online Pass," which would charge used game buyers $10 purchase a one-time code and unlock online play in sports titles like Madden, Tiger Woods, NCAA Football, and more. Again, those who purchase a new game will be able to use a code that comes with the game.
Publishers do not see any revenue from the sale of used games, so they are toying with the idea of getting what they can from consumers who buy the games, as opposed to retailers who sell them.