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Wii U won't block pre-owned games, Nintendo exec hints

Nintendo's says the Wii U will play nicely with pre-owned titles -- good news for bargain-hunting gamers.

A spot of good news for bargain-hunting gamers -- Nintendo has said it doesn't have any plans to stymie the second-hand games market.

In an interview with CNET's sister site GameSpot, Nintendo marketing exec Scott Moffitt said pre-owned titles are a "reality in the marketplace".

"I don't know if we have a formal position on used-game sales," Moffitt said, when quizzed about other publishers' use of DLC promotions and online passes, which aim to kill the second market and push gamers to pay full-price for games.

"We haven't incorporated any features that will discourage used-game sales at this point," Moffitt says. "We're not trying to circumvent that."

Nintendo's comments follow rumours that the PlayStation 4 (possibly called Orbis) will offer games on Blu-ray or in download form, with disc-based games locked to a single PSN account, with online authentication required before you're allowed to play.

The news that Nintendo doesn't have any plans to try and shut down second-hand sales is good news for gamers who like to wait before picking up titles, to get them a bit cheaper.

Recent blockbuster titles like Batman: Arkham City keep certain elements of the game (the Catwoman bits) back until you cash in the one-use code that comes with the game. If you want the full experience from a second-hand version, you'll need to pay to download that chunk of the game separately.

Other big names like Battlefield 3, Uncharted 3 and Mass Effect 3 (heavens, the games industry is so creative these days) require you to enter a one-use code before you're allowed to play online. Previously I've written that publishers' apparent disdain for the second-hand market could see the traditional games industry losing ground to smart phone games on Android or iOS kit.

Nintendo's man said he's not fazed by the rise of mobile gaming, saying that while iPads and their ilk might satisfy some, "There are other gamers that want a deeper, richer, more immersive gaming experience that can't be had on a device that wasn't really designed as a gaming device."

Tough talk from a company that's had to cut the price of its 3DS handheld, but I'm happy Nintendo doesn't have plans to eliminate the pre-owned market for now. That should also help ailing high-street shops like Game, which do much of their business on trade-ins.

What do you think of Nintendo's strategy? Tell me what you'd do differently in the comments or on our Facebook wall.

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