Author Topic: How do you feel about $69.99 MSRP for standard, non-special edition games?  (Read 102627 times)

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Offline Adrock

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I have a long list of questions I wanted to ask all both of you who still post here regularly so in a fleeting effort to foster more discussion, here’s one of these new topics! 👍

This is a not timely because Sony announced last year that some PS5 games will be $69.99. What got me thinking about it was when I recently looked over my PS4 library. I have a personal goal to not spend more than $20 on PS4 games I’m catching up on. I’ve largely adhered to that, only going over slightly twice for optional DLC like costumes in Resident Evil 2 and 3.

On Switch, I often buy Nintendo published games at full price since they don’t go on sale often. I have occasionally patiently waited for sales because hey, $20 is $20. Both Super Mario Maker 2 and Xenoblade Chronicles: Definitive Edition were bought on sale. Super Mario 3D World + Bowser’s Fury, Clubhouse Games, and Astral Chain are still sitting in my Amazon “Save For Later” list.

Back in the 90s, consoles games were like $49.99. Plugging that into an inflation calculator, that’s ~$87 in 2021. This at least partially explains why my parents generally only bought me games on my birthday and Christmas. They also never really liked me playing video games. Jokes on you, mom!

Is the price hike problematic for you? Will you wait for sales? Or is the entire thing a non-starter?

Offline Mr. Bungle

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The increase to $70 is inevitable and is easiest to swallow when paired with a new generation as Sony is implementing with PS5. I think it is fair considering the effort that goes into a AA game and for the inflation argument Adrock mentioned. Personally I am still adjusting to $60. I had the Best Buy gamer's club discount until  March. It gave me 20% off so I was paying $48 for new games. Before it wore off I pre-ordered what I could but I may have to actually pay $60 for a game now. I still only buy full price games with Nintendo and wait for Sony and Microsoft games to drop to about $20. Part of that is preference for Nintendo games but also the fact that other games would be discounted to $20 within a year of release while Nintendo games would take 5 years, or never drop. Another factor is the type of game. I only play online multiplayer with Nintendo games and those seem best enjoyed the first few years after release. With PS and XBox games I am not playing online so it doesn't matter if I am a few years late to the party.

Offline ThePerm

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Reminds me of the n64 era. Remember when Sony undercut Nintendo's prices?  n64 games were $59.99 -  $69.99 and Playstation games could be as low as $9.99

I buy some new games when they come out, but 2/3 I buy on sale.
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Offline Ian Sane

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Since the Canadian dollar fluctuates with the US dollar, my game prices have been quite different over the years.  Right now brand new games often cost between $80-90 CAD.  Back when game prices "increased" to $60 around the Wii era the Canadian dollar was about on par with the American one so while our new games were $60 that was a decrease from the $70 games of the Cube era (and N64 games were $80 because of the cart format).  If they increased to $70 USD then they'll probably be $99.99 CAD which would frankly SUCK.  Videogames are already too expensive new in Canada and this will just make it worse.

Though used games, provided they aren't old enough or rare enough to have been affected by the high prices of retro gaming, still remain affordable and non-Nintendo games still drop into the Wal-Mart cheap bin 9 months after release.  You can still afford things easily if you're not insisting on playing new games on day one.

But the PS5 is practically a digital-only console since you have to pay a premium for one with a disc drive.  There are no used digital games and no need to be clearing out old stock like a physical store does.  So price drops are entirely at the whim of the publisher.  So they nearly eliminate the few options available for people to buy games for current consoles at a low price and then increase the price of new titles at the same time?  Yeah, that's not a coincidence.

Offline nickmitch

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I'm ok with the price increase and think it's a good thing overall.  As stated in the thread, the costs of publishing a AAA (or any) title have only gone up since $60 became the norm.  We've seen companies implement microtransactions and emphasize DLC and pre-order incentives in order to mitigate those costs.  An honest and upfront price increase seems like the better way to go, imho.

Preferably, I'd like to see the scope of some games actually go down.  Not every title needs to promise the player so many hours.  Scaling back on scope could make production costs cheaper and allow me personally to play more games, which would be nice.
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Offline Order.RSS

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I'm ok with the price increase and think it's a good thing overall.  As stated in the thread, the costs of publishing a AAA (or any) title have only gone up since $60 became the norm.  We've seen companies implement microtransactions and emphasize DLC and pre-order incentives in order to mitigate those costs.  An honest and upfront price increase seems like the better way to go, imho.

Preferably, I'd like to see the scope of some games actually go down.  Not every title needs to promise the player so many hours.  Scaling back on scope could make production costs cheaper and allow me personally to play more games, which would be nice.

Somewhat agree, particularly about reducing scope. But unfortunately I really doubt the price hike will go hand in hand with the removal of paid DLC/micro payments/pre-order bonuses/lootboxes etc. It's not a trade being proposed - publishers have surely realized a 10$ price hike across the board will not compensate the lost revenue they make from all these additional income streams.
The NBA games went to 70 but still include microtransactions, and they have deluxe editions to play a few days earlier. Publishers will absolutely try to have their cake and eat it too.

Major movements in the industry have been to reduce up-front cost, either by going free-to-play, or fixed price catalogue access (Xbox Gamepass, Apple Arcade). I get it was sort of inevitable to do either that, or raise the price, but I would have expected a jump to $64.99 first. If publishers explicitly said they would raise the price and in exchange stop using additional monetization methods, their argument would probably be received better (but they don't want to abandon those options).

Offline nickmitch

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That's a fair point: no one is explicitly offering that tradeoff.  The NBA games would probably need to see the revenues from those microtransactions drop off before they consider abandoning them.  I'm hoping we'll see stuff like that fade away in the long term, however.

As far as pre-order bonuses and deluxe versions go, I think that might stick around because possibly it's the easiest way to get cash flows for a product before you start selling it.  Something has to keep the development process afloat.
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Offline stevey

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I still haven't accepted the 59.99 price tag. Almost always I can find them going for 49.99 or less.
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Offline Stratos

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Its an interesting dichotomy (tri-chotomy?) because I NEVER buy non-Nintendo games at full price, especially PC games. Between Steam sales, weekly free Epic Store games, and even cross referencing Deku Deals I am always getting games for cheap/free. Its got to be an absolute known quantity or something I know I will play a bunch of (and a bunch of soon if I know it will be getting discounted down the road) or want to support for me to buy full price. A number of games I planned to get for Switch I now own for free on PC.

On the other hand the cheaper deals means I'm more likely to double dip on another system. Got it free on PC? I'll grab the Switch version if it performs well, especially if it has cross-platform save support (Civ 6, Witcher 3). Also, I'm migrating to all-digital so I'm rebuying games digitally I already own physically if I know its a game I'll continue to go back to over the years (I have Skyrim on Switch and I plan to rebuy digitally when it is cheap enough AND eventually get on PC to play through with better graphics).

So its funny how games are going up in value while at the same time there is massive devaluation of games across all platforms.

I mention 'trichotomy' because there is also the polar opposite of the $60-$80 games and that are the free phone games and even free PC and Switch games. Fortnight, World of Tanks, Warframe, and many others make gaming on a limited budget incredibly easy, but add in the slippery slope of microtransactions and the potential of gambling-like behaviors.
« Last Edit: June 10, 2021, 02:41:23 PM by Stratos »
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Offline Kairon

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I'm pretty sure you'd be hard-pressed as a consumer to find silver linings in this. No one WANTS to have to dole out hard-earned cash for stuff.

But there's simply a couple points where this is hard to get riled up about for me.

For one, inflation is real. A $60 video game in 1997 with inflation is probably $85 dollars today. A price rise to $69.99 is not only overdue, it's actually not keeping pace with inflation! And likely this is for a more robust and content-full product to boot. (discussions about whether consumers are able to afford that entertainment are a completely different topic)

Another point is that one might argue that games have FALLEN in price! If you want to play a video game there are options ranging from $50 to $40 down to $14.99, $10, $2, and FREE!!! If we look at these as generally interchangeable entertainment experiences, then you absolutely don't have to buy a $69.99 game when there are so many new AND classic titles available for SO much cheaper.

But what about if you absolutely NEED that ONE game and nothing else will do? Well, aren't games a "luxury"? I'm not downplaying the importance of art and entertainment for social and intellectual edification, but I think it's a personal choice to fixate on a single game. A fun one, but it's hard to see anyone compelling us to be handcuffed to these launch purchases, these are handcuffs we put on ourselves.

There's just too many ways where complaining about the inflation of game prices sounds like a problem that's only important if you've taken care of so many other more important concerns on Maslowe's hierarchy of needs, and only if you CHOOSE to fixate on those $69.99 price points to the exclusion of other options.
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Offline broodwars

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Well, after having had a PS5 since February and having purchased a couple of games at the new inflated $70 price, I honestly can't say my position on pricing has changed since last generation. The games that have all the passion & bells and whistles will be worth the full price. The ones that don't, won't, and I'll do everything in my power to either wait for a sale or to mitigate the cost. *shrug*

So long as I feel like I'm getting my money's worth, the $70 price tag is regrettable but tolerable. I already tend to buy special editions or collector's editions of games I really want that have those $10-$20 price hikes built-in. And as previously pointed out, Nintendo charges that flat $60 on all their games, and it's not like they universally justify those prices on every game they put out.

I feel like the companies who are truly worthy of derision in all this are those that are cutting features AND flooding their games with microtransactions and loot boxes while STILL insisting on that $70 price tag. Yeah, I'm largely referring to everyone's favorite scumbags: EA & Activision, the former of which is selling its new Battlefield game at the full $70 despite gutting the single-player experience altogether and the latter of which is just The Worst. I'm sure we can throw 2K in there somewhere as well, given what they do with their sports games.
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