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Sony is taking steps to ensure that gamers pick up a new copy of Resistance 3 instead of a used one. They confirmed today that the shooter will ship with an Online Pass.
An Online Pass is a code that enables you to unlock the game's online features. Publishers like THQ and EA have included them in some of their recent releases. They're designed specifically to combat the sale of pre-owned games.
The trick with an Online Pass is that the unlock code can only be used once. The previous owner of a pre-owned copy will likely have used the code for online play already. In order to enjoy the game's multiplayer, then, the new owner of the game will have to pay for their own Online Pass (generally $10 or $15). Basically, the consumer ends up spending whatever money they saved in the first place by buying a used copy instead of a new one, if not more.
"We are always evaluating new programs for our online offering, and starting with Resistance 3 this September, we will be instituting a network pass program for PS3 games with online capabilities," said Sony in a statement. "This program will be game-specific. Games that are a part of this program will include a single-use registration code that grants the account holder redeeming the code full online access for that title."
"This is an important initiative as it allows us to accelerate our commitment to enhancing premium online services across our first party game portfolio."
Sony has yet to announce the Online Pass for any other specific games. The wording of this statement makes it clear that R3 won't be the only one, though.