PS4 Doesn't Allow Online Passes Even From Third-Party Publishers

The Online Pass program and any measure of similar ilk is not allowed on the PlayStation 4. Sony has made this final. While third-party forms of DRM is still something that publishers can pursue, the Online Pass is not one of them.

Gamasutra, the industry's heart and soul for game development related journalism, went out on a limb to get a full clarification of the DRM for the PS4, despite SCEA's CEO Jack Tretton making it perfectly clear that there would be no disc-based DRM for PS4 titles. Speaking with Scott Rohde, software product development head for Sony Worldwide Studios America, Rohde stated that...

We've already come right out and said we're not going to allow online pass. And the word "allow" is key there. Specifically with online, with PS+ requiring a charge to play online, we would not want any publisher [to charge.]In general, we're all businesses. Sony or Microsoft is never going to be able to tell EA or Activision exactly what they can do. What we like to say at PlayStation is that we set the precedent. The way we are approaching this is that we want this to be extremely consumer-friendly, extremely retailer-friendly, and extremely publisher-friendly. My personal opinion is that it's hard for me to believe that any major publisher is going to put an extra set of used DRM onto game titles because that wouldn't put them in a good spot, right?

This news actually rocked Electronic Arts pretty hard, as EA's COO, Peter Moore, was taken aback by the sudden move toward pro-consumerism by Sony and Microsoft's move away from pro-consumerism. The electronic software publisher voted as the two-time running Worst Company in America is still undecided on their approach to DRM, and are treading very carefully with their message to the public.

I'm impressed with how Sony wants to take the precedent and set it back two generations to the way it was with the PlayStation 2 – that gaming is about gaming and that hardware that lets you buy, trade and sell your games to have fun with is the way a game console should operate. I admire Sony's stance in this dichotomy between the PS4 and Xbox One's consumer policies.

I also like how the sensible thing of charging for online multiplayer is offset with a lack of multiplayer-required DRM. It makes sense that if you pay to play online you shouldn't have to pay again to access multiplayer, opposite of the Xbox brand, where you pay for Xbox Live and then pay again to access multiplayer from a used game with an Online Pass. The asininity in that kind of wallet-gouging requires criticism beyond the confines of this article.

Anyway, the PS4 has already sold out at Amazon in pre-orders alone. The machine is set for release this fall and will have more than 140 games released throughout its first year on the market, including 30 exclusives and 12 new IP.

Oh yeah and the PS4 is region free. 4 > 1

Will Usher

Staff Writer at CinemaBlend.