The rumor of the upcoming Xbox console not allowing play of used games has prompted comments from various developers, particularly Volition's design director Jameson Durall who loves that idea in an article on #AltDevBlogADay:
The system is already there for Microsoft. all they'd have to do is use the DLC and codes model they have to tie a game to your Xbox live account. Each retail disc would likely need that unique key somewhere in the code so the account would be able to link it properly. Ideally it would tie a full version to the console it is registered on so family members can play even if the main account isn't signed in, but this is exactly how their model works now anyway.
I could see Microsoft implementing their own rental service which would maybe give them a code that activates the game for X days and they are charged a small amount. This could work when you borrow the disc from someone or even with digital download of the full version. It would also send a percentage of the rental to the developer with each rental - likely improving the overall revenue we would receive from it.
Another issue would be with simply lending the game to a friend but maybe they could implement something similar to what Amazon is doing with their Kindle Books lending policy. The license of the game could be transferred for a set time to another Gamertag and the original owner won't be able to play during that time. Seems like it could work.
This speaks to the industry's desire to transform consoles, however they can, into the Steam model. If that's the intended target, I would feel slightly better about it, but the lending policy he proposes for lending games to friends is far too unfriendly. The lending policy for Kindle Books is exactly why I like, you know, regular books. Just drop this in the "stop screwing everyone over piracy" box.