Obsidian wants to go digital – and kill off used games

Tuesday, 13th December 2011 05:54 GMT By Brenna Hillier

Chris Avellone, chief creative officer at Fallout: New Vegas developer Obsidian Entertainment, has a pretty clear stance on the used game trade.

“Our eventual hope is that we can stockpile enough resources to release our own titles digitally,” the developer told IndustryGamers.

“Smaller games can be very satisfying projects to work on, and it would be great to do that. But it’s going to take time for us to get there; we want to make sure we do it right.”

Going digital could mean an end to reliance on publishers, but Avellone has another motivation.

“Of course, one of the greatest things about digital distribution is what it does to reduce the used game market. I hope digital distribution stabs the used game market in the heart,” he said, in what I imagine was a fierce, ringing tone, possibly accompanied by an abrupt gesture.

There are other advantages, too – no hard ship dates, for one.

“One of the things I enjoyed with Fallout: New Vegas was that digital distribution of the DLC made things more flexible in terms of getting the content done,” Avellone noted.

“You didn’t have to worry about production times for discs, and so you could take an extra week if you needed that to get things right.”

Obsidian is also responsible for Dungeon Siege III, Neverwinter Nights 2, Alpha Protocol and the upcoming South Park RPG, among others.

Thanks, GoNintendo.



  1. back_up

    PC gamers are pirates they also pirates DD games not just retail

    #1 3 years ago
  2. jacobvandy

    @1 Console games are pirated just as much, but I forgot we’re not supposed to talk about that…

    #2 3 years ago
  3. alterecho

    Sorry, but I beg to differ. I can play pirated games right now, since i don’t have money, but i choose not to. Me and many others.

    #3 3 years ago
  4. back_up

    @3 good for u but witcher2 developers saying different

    #4 3 years ago
  5. mongbatstar

    “Me and my friends who are probably all of the same social demographic don’t pirate our games so therefore all console gamers are honest like us”

    You can’t make this s**t up.

    #5 3 years ago
  6. freedoms_stain

    Switzerland has a “legal for personal use” policy on file sharing/piracy, recently they conducted research to determine whether or not that policy needed to change, what they discovered was that file sharers spend more money on entertainment products than non-file sharers and thus found no reason to alter their existing policies.


    #6 3 years ago
  7. TheBlackHole

    “@1 Console games are pirated just as much”

    I don’t agree with @1, but don’t be naive. PC piracy is more prevalent, if only because of its ease and accessibility,

    #7 3 years ago
  8. IL DUCE

    @7 yeah what #2 fails to understand is that since consoles are all the same, the creators put counter-measures into updates and such that will make the consoles unusable if they are flashed, modded or running pirated material…while also blocking you from accessing the online features of the console…everyone has their own PC, and they are all different with no massive updates going out to everyone’s PC at the same time to prevent piracy and therefore it is much more rampant…not to mention PC market, whether you like it or not, is a lot smaller than the console market, even if that’s partially thanks to all the pirated games not counting towards sales in the market

    #8 3 years ago
  9. DSB

    @8 Actually the problem with the “piracy” debate is that people prefer to base it on ignorance and personal prejudice, rather than actual fact.

    So I just looked at EA’s 2010 fiscal year. It looked like this:

    Number of titles:

    360 – 22
    PS3 – 21
    PC – 16

    Revenue according to platform:

    360 – 868 million
    PS3 – 771 million
    PC – 687 million

    Revenue divided by number of titles, according to platform:

    PC – 43 million per title
    360 – 39,5 million per title
    PS3 – 37 million per title

    Feel free to double check those numbers.

    The real question of the piracy debate when trying to “rank” platforms isn’t a question of who pirates the most, but whether it hurts the market itself. Obviously the PC is earning more per title than any other platform, so pirates are doing a terrible job of undermining it as a whole.

    #9 3 years ago
  10. Joe Musashi

    @9 And the reason you don’t get hard figures for piracy is because, for some ker-azy reason, pirates don’t go to chart track/npd/whoever and give them official figures of the amount of illegitimately acquired software that’s been distributed.

    Which then gives them (and others) a convenient smokescreen of “well, there’s no accurate numbers, so all numbers must be made up” and sidestep the genuine issue.


    #10 3 years ago
  11. DSB

    Activision doesn’t report in the same way as EA did in 2010, but they do note in their 2010 Calendar report that they’ve doubled their profits on the PC in just three years. 2009 saw a drop in profits, so essentially they’ve tripled their profits from last year, and doubled them from what they were in 2008.

    #11 3 years ago

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