Sony Puts The Kibosh On Second Hand Copies Of DCUniverse



Thinking of picking up a used copy of the superhero MMO DC Universe Online for the PS3?

Think again.

According to reports Sony has fixed it so that the game discs of DCUO are linked to one-time PSN activation codes, resulting in the disc being forever attached to one PSN account.

“Once the PSN key has been consumed with a disk it cannot be resold/replayed with the second user adding a sub – only the original consumer can use that acct,” a Sony rep told LazyGamer, adding that “Disk and account are one.”

This also makes it impossible for PS3 owners to use separate PSN IDs to play the game. If a family member wants to enjoy DC Universe Online on the same PS3 then he/she would have to purchase a brand new copy of the game. While it sounds like an interesting way to combat used game sales, I personally wish Sony could have found a way to allow multiple PSN IDs to play the game on one PS3.


Written by: Sakinah - Contributing Editor


  1. #1 by EdEN on February 14th, 2011 [ 139841 Points ]

    Makes a bit of sense since this is an online heavy game but I think maybe including a second activation key would have made it easier on families to justify the monthly cost of an MMO, specially when we’re talking about the DC Universe.

  2. #2 by jscar2000 on February 14th, 2011 [ 50 Points ]

    I think in the long run this is going to hurt sales of the game. They should have the option of purchasing a secondary license for that disk, as a discounted price.

  3. #3 by Ravenitrius on February 14th, 2011 [ 1275 Points ]

    Oh hey. It’s DRM for the PS3 Discs. I never imagined it.

  4. #4 by Beastxjason on February 14th, 2011 [ 25926 Points ]

    Thats Evil

  5. #5 by pedro on February 14th, 2011 [ 39949 Points ]

    “I personally wish Sony could have found a way to allow multiple PSN IDs to play the game on one PS3″

    Agreed, that’s a really harsh decision that will certainly affect sales and shows that Sony might be getting less and less patient about sensitive issues like used games.

  6. #6 by cz on February 14th, 2011

    “While it sounds like an interesting way to combat used game sales”
    wtf, no it doesn’t, this is pure evil

  7. #7 by Oly on February 14th, 2011 [ 132150 Points ]

    “If a family member wants to enjoy DC Universe Online on the same PS3 then he/she would have to purchase a brand new copy of the game. While it sounds like an interesting way to combat used game sales, I personally wish Sony could have found a way to allow multiple PSN IDs to play the game on one PS3.”

    BOOOO!!! I wish everything was free,,, lol

  8. #8 by Luke on February 14th, 2011 [ 27382 Points ]

    Guys get over it, how is this any different than World of Warcraft? Once the game(key) has been activated it’s done.

  9. #9 by Captiosus on February 14th, 2011 [ 20 Points ]

    Given that this is a MMO, one license key makes sense to me. Every other main MMO has done this since late EQ. I still have my one-time-use City of Heroes CD Key sitting here from initial launch back in 2004.

    However, what boggles my mind is that, unlike every other MMO, the key and CD are inexplicably linked because they refuse to put the option to buy a full client license on PSN. With any other pay-to-play MMO, I could hand the disks off to anyone I choose, and they could install the game, but they just couldn’t play it until they purchased a full license. I got several friends into City of Heroes/City of Villains and World of Warcraft (sorry!) this way.

    I don’t really care about not being able to resell the game. I rarely trade or resell games anyway. But the fact that when I decide to stop playing, I can’t even give the disk to someone else who could, in turn, buy a license off PSN is just silly. This means if I don’t decide to subscribe (and I doubt I will, after the scathing review I gave it on Facebook and GI), I’m left with a coaster I can’t even give away.

  10. #10 by EdEN on February 14th, 2011 [ 139841 Points ]

    Captiosus hit it right on the head. They should do what other companies do with day one free DLC or bonuses and place and activation key up for purchase for $10 on PSN and be done with this small inconvenience. Maybe this opens up the opportunity for different accounts on the same console.

  11. #11 by MattD on February 14th, 2011

    Wow thanks sony. Im so glad they release this after it comes out. I would have never bought it if i knew this. Well now it looks like i can’t sell it like i was planning to, and im probably going to get sucked into paying the ridiculous 15 a month for this really glitchy game that has already lost the appeal it had when i first bought it and played it. Perfect.

  12. #12 by Kane112 on February 14th, 2011 [ 34187 Points ]

    that sucks. Captiosus does have a good point tho

  13. #13 by anonymoose on February 14th, 2011

    SONYFAIL…called it

  14. #14 by hobbes on February 14th, 2011 [ 30476 Points ]

    this seems really wrong

  15. #15 by dave on February 14th, 2011

    well well well they need all the money they can get for this game.

  16. #16 by Markus on February 14th, 2011 [ 4322 Points ]

    Gamers are so cheap lol…

    And RMTing should be a punishable offense. Chop a damn thumb off or something.

  17. #17 by Emrah on February 15th, 2011 [ 7319 Points ]

    This pretty much confirms Sony is run by a bunch of clueless people, at least this generation. Restricting bluray copy per PSN id, on a subscription based game? They are pretty much blocking FREE advertisement, like Captiousus says. They are also making it harder for people in the same household to play the game using their own accounts, paying their own subscriptions fees, by making the single disk useful. They are TOTALLY blocking impulse buys of the subscription of people in the same household. Your brother likes the game? He should go grab a copy from the store which may prevent the potential sale (This is null if there’s a downloadable version from PSN tho).

    Maybe they are testing this new kind of DRM, but on the wrong game.

  18. #18 by pedro on February 15th, 2011 [ 39949 Points ]

    Captiosus is right. Why couldn’t they do that instead?

    I mean, linking a CD to S/N to a PSN account doesn’t makes sense, what happens if you lose your CD? Bye bye account?

  19. #19 by BATTLEFACE on February 15th, 2011

    I feel this is a great idea. In fact, Sony needs to especially implement this for Socom 4. For all those whiners complaining about the game’s direction and who plan on buying a used copy of S4 so that Zipper doesn’t get any money.

  20. #20 by TiredOfLies on February 15th, 2011

    I do not own DCUO, nor will I ever.

    Between the glitches, missing information, poor frame rates, subscription fee, and the one-account activation, I see no compelling reason to pick up this game. Maybe if Sony had worried about optimizing the frame rates, creating more areas, and producing a more interesting game instead of making sure everyone pays them $60 for this ham-strung City of Heroes ripoff, maybe I might have considered…

    The mass exodus of people already leaving the game due to the various issues shows how bad it really is – they’re using it for the 30 days they are given, then moving on to something better, i.e. almost anything.

    Give it up, Sony – you’ll never relive the days of EverQuest again… EVER! Maybe it is time you corporate greed zombies get a clue: If we (gamers) are going to pay money, we expect something worth the money!

  21. #21 by Vortex on February 15th, 2011

    This is the type of single use ownership per game that Sony was thinking a year before PS3 came out.

    The bad part is once it’s introduced, slowly other games will also use it. Look at EA games now, single ownership of online multiplayer for new game has become the standard. At least EA is happy to sell you another license but it’s expensive.

    As gamers, we can complain but publishers know if they have enough “must own” game titles, plenty of gamers will buy them anyway. Most gamers don’t even check if the new game they are buying has single ownership and prefer to complain later. By then, it’s pointless because they already bought the game. I for one resist buying most games with single ownership per new game because I also play with multiple accounts.

  22. #22 by Captiosus on February 15th, 2011 [ 20 Points ]

    I feel as thought I should clarify my original post. When I said “hand the disks off”, I meant this in a PC sense. I know you need the disk to play DCUO, even if it installs the majority of it to the PS3′s HDD, so I couldn’t just give the disk to someone, have them install the client to PS3, and then they could buy the license. But, in all honesty, why COULDN”T it function this way?

    The other thing that makes me shake my head is that the retail PC version of DCUO comes with a 10 day friend’s pass/trial, which specifically encourages disk sharing. No such free trial exists for PS3 users, not even for other users on the same console.

    Meh, it’s just another thing in the laundry list of complaints I have regarding the game.

  23. #23 by Beastxjason on February 15th, 2011 [ 25926 Points ]

    Gamestop is shivering in their boots :P

  24. #24 by TiredOfLies on February 15th, 2011

    Beastxjason: Gamestop is shivering in their boots   

    Here we go dragging GS out into the spotlight, the same bull**** that Sony and other companies try to trumpet tirelessly – “We don’t make any used sales money! We are poor little game companies, we must always make full price!” GAMESTOP AIN’T THE ONLY USED GAMES RESELLER, YA KNOW!

    I understand wanting to get paid for selling the games – it is only fair to want to be compensated for time, effort, and resources invested in such an endeavor. However, let’s look at reality, folks: Game companies do NOT sell the games straight to the consumer (unless digitally) – they sell the games to the RETAILER (for less than MSRP) who then sells the games to the consumer (at or above MSRP). I though EA was bad with its “pay us money to play a used copy online” model, but UbiSoft’s Assassin’s Creed II “Constant Internet Connection in order to play” was terrible, and this is even worse!

    Since Sony loves using the US courts so much for their frivolous whining lawsuits about “He rewrote his machine’s firmware, WHAA WHAA, we want millions in damages even though we can’t prove any ACTUAL harm was done, we’re a poor little struggling game company, WHAA WHAA WHAA”, how about they actually use it to regulate the sale of used games? Maybe make a law which forces all used game retailers to pay a fee or percentage of all used game sales to the companies who produced the games? That way, used games could still flourish, poorer gamers could purchase reduced-price titles which they may have had to skip (and possibly gain a new series they like, leading to possible new games’ sequels’ sales), and the game companies would still get SOME money as opposed to none from a financially-driven decision of no purchase…

    But no, it’s simply easier to bilk & soak the consumer than going after what is the root issue – oh wait, I forgot – all consumers are thieves and need to be financially punished, not the companies stealing the sales…

    And these corporate a******s wonder why people aren’t buying like they once did…


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