A newly discovered patent by NeoGAF user gofreak
has re-kindled rumours that Sony might be looking into suppressing second-hand video game sales, something retailers like EB Games or US equivalent GameStop rely so heavily on. The patent was originally filed on the 9th of December last year, and details a method that could possibly stop used games from being played without any form of Internet connection.
In order to resolve the above-described problems, an electronic content processing system according to one embodiment of the present invention includes: a use permission apparatus provided for use in a recording medium that stores electronic content for a user of the electronic content; a medium drive configured to read the electronic content from the recording medium; and a reproduction device configured to reproduce the electronic content read by the medium drive. The medium drive has a security management unit configured to read from the recording medium an article ID that is an ID of the electronic content or the recording medium. The reproduction device has a security management unit configured to convey a reproduction entity ID, which is a reproduction device ID or a user ID, together with the article ID read by the medium drive to the use permission apparatus when the electronic content is to be reproduced.
The use permission apparatus includes: a use condition storage for storing a use condition that defines an attribute of an entity accessible to the electronic content; and a determining unit for determining whether or not a combination of the article ID and the reproduction entity ID conveyed from the reproduction device fulfills the use condition. The security management unit of the reproduction device determines a reproduction mode of the electronic content based on a decision result as to whether or not the combination thereof fulfills the use condition.
While the above text may seem like gibberish to some, the patent outlines that the system will use RF tags to determine whether the game has been played previously, and if so, makes it impossible to play. This new system could see the second-hand gaming scene pretty much deplete, however so far it is purely rumoured as to whether Sony's next-gen console will actually use it. Previously Sony has patented ideas, however has never acted on them so time will tell. The next Sony and Microsoft consoles are expected to debut at this years E3, so stay tuned to AusGamers for more.
For those looking for more information, you can browse the full patent over here
. Let us know your thoughts in the comments below on what this might mean for next-gen consoles, good or bad.