Sony To Introduce Online Serial Code Checks?

A precursor: there’s nothing to suggest this might happen outside of a news story on a Dutch website that surfaced a day or two back.  They’re blasting it as an ‘exclusive’ and the rumour has been bubbling around the web since, so it’s worthy of discussion.

Here’s the rub: according to the report, all future PS3 game disks are to carry a special, unique one-time code and players will need to activate that code into the PlayStation 3 itself, or via a dedicated form on the PlayStation Network.


This, as you’d expect, would lock the game to that console, or to that user.  And, therefore, disable copies of that game from working elsewhere as the PS3 will be doing little checks to ensure that the disk matches the profile, and will (in theory at least) prevent the game from booting.

Of course, this could massively affect the secondhand market, and would perhaps block out legitimate buyers who don’t have access to Sony’s online services.  DRM’s always a bone of contention, but this perhaps is the strictest we’ve ever heard of for a console.

The source suggests that each game (or, rather, each code) can be used up to five times, a little like Apple’s App Store, although it’s worth stressing that this has had no official word from Sony since the news first appeared, so treat everything with a healthy (or not) pinch of salt.

What do you think?



  1. Out of about 40 games i own maybe 6 or seven where bought new and only 3 at full price on release day . This would be very bad news for me if it is true. Gaming would become more the pastime of the rich just like what has become of my other great loves football and Driving.

  2. welcome to world of razor, reloaded etc… DRM is useless, people will always find a way round it :)

  3. Nah… ain’t gonna happen, if it did and it became a complete negative effect for SCE thus doing a Sega… I don’t think I would bother with consoles anymore maybe the odd Nin console

  4. I don’t have a problem with this as long as they implement the five use thing. There are 3 PS3s in my house (a family one and the kids have one each in their rooms). There also needs to be a mechanism to re-activate a code in case of YLOD etc, this could be done as a means to support the second-hand market too.

  5. Doesn’t look like a very good idea, Its just a very complex idea and it might result with tons of problems, maybe a couple of games will be released with a glitch that ones code will work and so on.

    But if its really needed than I can’t complain that much.

  6. it would be shamefull to bring out this idea as it is.we dont know the correct details yet so no point ranting.but if it is as simple as 1 code per system then wtf would happen if ya ps3 dies and ya need a new one? i for sure wont pay out more cash for a game that ive already paid through the nose for..

  7. This approach would be wayyy to extreme, why would Sony even bother, as CC said, 13m people wouldnt be able to play games, as their PS3’s arent connected to the PSN. That is a whole lot of revenue Sony cannot afford to lose!

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