The rise of the used game business is having a damaging effect on the video games industry, Silicon Knights boss Dennis Dyack has told GamesIndustry.biz.
Dyack believes the sales tail games used to have has been all but wiped out by used games.
"There used to be something in games for 20 years called a tail, where say you have a game called Warcraft that would sell for 10 years. Because there are no used games, you could actually sell a game for a long time, and get recurring revenue for quite a while. Recurring revenue is very key," said Dyack.
"Now there is no tail. Literally, you will get most of your sales within three months of launch, which has created this really unhealthy extreme where you have to sell it really fast and then you have to do anything else to get money," he added.
Without intervention Dyack believes the industry will face serious problems as a result of used game sales.
"I would argue, and I've said this before, that used games are cannibalizing the industry. If developers and publishers don't see revenue from that, it's not a matter of hey 'we're trying to increase the price of games to consumers, and we want more,' we're just trying to survive as an industry. If used games continue the way that they are, it's going to cannibalize, there's not going to be an industry," he said. "People won't make those kinds of games. So I think that's inflated the price of games, and I think that prices would have come down if there was a longer tail, but there isn't."
One way forward is digital sales, believes Dyack.
"We need a system with recurring revenue and that's why I think digital distribution is going to play a big role in things to come," he concluded. "That's why I am still very big on cloud computing."
Do you wait for a game to appear pre-owned in order to save some cash? Would you buy more new games if they weren't available pre-owned? Let us know in the comments section below.