Enjoy playing your used games now, because come next generation, they could very well become a thing of the past.

According to a NeoGAF post discovered earlier today, Sony's PlayStation division has patented technology that is able to track and block the use of secondhand games on a video game console.

The device is able to "tag" games that are played on multiple systems, basically with the purpose of attempting to control secondhand sales of software.  Obviously Sony may also be looking into digital options, so users can download the games – as they can now on PlayStation Network, with various titles.

The patent reads as follows: According the present embodiment, realized is the electronic content processing system that reliably restricts the use of electronic content dealt in the second-hand markets.  As a result, the dealing of electronic content in the second-hand markets is suppressed, which in turn supports the redistribution of part of proceeds from sales of the electronic content to the developers.  Though in the following description a game application (AP) is exemplified as the electronic content, the present embodiment is similarly applicable to various kinds of electronic content such as an office suite, images and music content.

Though Sony hasn't confirmed its use of this technology, it sounds like it could be taking shape more quickly than you expect.  We'll have more info once it's confirmed…