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Submitted by Lavalamp 421d ago | news

"Unbelievable" $60 game RRPs are killing off publishers and developers, says Volition's Boone

Saints Row developer takes aim at "ridiculously huge budgets." (Industry, Jim Boone)

zerocrossing  +   421d ago
What have I been saying all this time!.
THamm  +   421d ago
Blame EA guilty as well. Not only were their prices higher on the Genesis, but look back to 2004. NFL2K5 had to compete with Madden. SEGA decided to come out at $19.99, sold like crazy. Although the game was the best, that wasn't known to many until after they picked up and said, "I'll give it a shot at $20!!" EA sees a huge threat, creates the Exclusive License bull and continues to charge $60 thus hiding the key ingredient that games at $20 will sell much, much more and faster.
zerocrossing  +   421d ago
It's ludicrous isn't it? How can these companies not realise that making their games that little bit more "affordable" would naturally increase the potential consumer base.

I've lost my respect for Capcom but EA I never had any to loose.
mikeslemonade  +   420d ago
Noway.. $60 isn't that much these days. Compare that to a night out at dinner or movies. There's a lot more value and they really should increase it by another $10.

And here's an example there's noway GTA5 would have sold 3x times as much. Whoever wanted GTA5 has already bought it or will get it later. And they would have to make more than 3x since production still cost money.

Business is a business. Right now there's too much competition. There's gonna be many losers. These developers need to go find another job, and that's the reality of modern life.
3-4-5  +   421d ago
I'd rather a Dev make 3 $20 million dollar games, than 1 $60 million dollar game.
HammadTheBeast  +   420d ago
Kind of hypocritical of Volition considering they were the ones who made a $60 half-DLC game.
Nate-Dog  +   420d ago
@Your comment below:

$60 isn't affordable? I had to pay €65 for Grand Theft Auto V when it came out, that's $88 or so. People in mainland Europe have had to pay €65-€70 for almost every new release for the majority of the time that the Xbox 360 and Playstation 3 have been out (only in the last 2 years or so have prices there decreased). Prices are confirmed to remain at $60 for PS4 games as far as I can remember for North America, no such guarantee for Europe or any other region though, because we'll never get games that cheap again. I never understand why people bawww at $60 being the maximum you'll pay for a game in the US.

I agree with the unbelievable budgets allocated to games though.
HonestDragon  +   420d ago
I remember seeing a list somewhere that detailed why a video game would have a high budget. The top two reasons were marketing and multiplayer. Marketing because of some insane stunts and advertisements that a company comes up with. Multiplayer for adding a completely new mode that might be very extensive, yet time consuming. I just can't remember where I read that. I'll try to find that link. But, yes, some companies need to get smarter about their budgets.
Majin-vegeta  +   421d ago
Finally someone who gets it.
MestreRothN4G  +   421d ago
I don't think that the guy from the company which recently released a DLC disguised as a full sequel has any moral to talk about what is killing the industry and pulling consumers away.
aLucidMind  +   420d ago
That comment proves youve yet to even play the game
tehpees3  +   421d ago
Its nice to hear a developer looking at it from our view for once. This is the point Jim Sterling tried to put out against Cliff when Cliff said "cut our budgets?"

Nobody really cares how much money you put into it. Yet some companies seem convinced people do.
Baka-akaB  +   421d ago
coming from guys that released a retooled addon as the fourth game of their main franchise ? And wich milked the hell out of Dlcs with SR 3rd ? I'll seek some other white knight personally
#3.1 (Edited 421d ago ) | Agree(0) | Disagree(1) | Report | Reply
STREET x KING  +   421d ago
To be honest, Epic Games had a small budget (compared to gears 1 & 3) for gears judgment and gears 2 and those two games destroyed that series.
SilentNegotiator  +   420d ago
Gotta love Jim. He loves doing episodes of Jimquisition that focus on games that manage to make money without screwing us, having massive budgets, etc.
majiebeast  +   421d ago
2 publishers that need to learn to budget games.

-Square Enix
-Ubisoft
NexGen  +   421d ago
R*?
MrSwankSinatra  +   421d ago
rockstar doesn't need to budget their games. they make quality with every game they put out. an in return their investment is returned ten-fold
SilentNegotiator  +   420d ago
It's too late for Rockstar. They've already convinced fans that a good open world game NEEDS a map 10x the size of actual New York City and a billion distractions.

They could have done just was well making a game half the size with the same amount of marketing.
HammadTheBeast  +   420d ago
@Silent

Are you disappointed in R* for giving more content?
SilentNegotiator  +   420d ago
That's exactly what I said, so yes.

/s

We're discussing industry here, not fighting about games being good/bad.
#4.1.4 (Edited 420d ago ) | Agree(0) | Disagree(0) | Report
Baka-akaB  +   421d ago
What's particularly wrong with Ubi's budgeting ? DiD i miss something ?
majiebeast  +   421d ago
300 developers on Splintercell blacklist.
#4.2.1 (Edited 421d ago ) | Agree(6) | Disagree(1) | Report
Baka-akaB  +   421d ago
I see , but other than that they did uite fine on their other big franchises
Nate-Dog  +   420d ago
They also had 12 teams working on Assassin's Creed Revelations I believe, and it turned out pretty poorly anyway.
MrSwankSinatra  +   421d ago
more like capcom & square enix
HonestDragon  +   420d ago
Square Enix I agree with. Couple that with their high expectations for some of their games. Did Blacklist seriously have 300 developers on it? I gotta look that up. O.o
Volkama  +   421d ago
Would X game sell at least 3 times more with a $20 price tag?
6x more with a $10 price tag?

It's pretty much that simple, at least where digital gaming is concerned.

Reduce budgets (by focusing the experience, not dimishing quality), charge the right prices. Maybe it'd be profitable enough to save us from the plague of microtransactions and DLC.
ziggurcat  +   421d ago
... except micro-transactions are irrelevant since you can obtain any of that content through natural progression. they'll only become a legitimate complaint when the user is forced to purchase something required to progress through the campaign. as it stands now, ignoring it won't affect your ability to enjoy the full experience of the game (single or multiplayer).
CyrusLemont  +   420d ago
@ziggurcat I've played enough games with micro transactions to see it hinder the 'full experience'. Fair enough some games do allow you to still obtain the content you want, but guess what? At least 90% of them completely wreck the normal progression system to earn them and works as a means to force impatience on the player and make them pay. That IS a legitimate complaint and completely unfair on the player, particularly after paying for the game.

On mobile platforms, it's even worse. On top of in game standard currency, there's always a special currency to get the rare and actually powerful items (Gems, Tokens, whatever). And generally if you don't pay for them, the difficulty tends to get insanely hard. Micro transactions are good for no one. It detracts the customer, and gives a company a bad reputation.
Volkama  +   420d ago
I'm referring to the general concept of a game being designed to be a revenue stream beyond that $60. The long tail, as EA put it.

That's not going anywhere, and generally pricing and consumption of games is a huge topic I'm not going to go on about here :-)
T2  +   420d ago
I vote with my wallet ... Only bought skyrim and borderlands 2 and gta5 at full price in all of 2013 .... And one dlc
webeblazing  +   421d ago
Same. I'm surprised games didn't go up this gen they know gamers are dumb snuff 2 buy them. A lot of gamers just follow the herd. Seriously why is game 60 in the 1st place. I rarely buy games at full price cause I'm broke got bills and most of these are basically the even though people hype the like some evolutionary step forward. And worst you pay extra 4 things that was free. You heard no backlash about having 2 pay 4 online and you heard no backlash about skin that use 2 be unlockable s
hankmoody  +   421d ago
At the end of the day, the patient gamer wins. I didn't have to wait too long to get Assassin's Creed 3 for $15 on XBLA. Anyone who can stand to wait a little while will generally get their game of choice for far less than its debut price.
mhunterjr  +   421d ago
I don't understand why publishers feel like their game has to be 'full price' regardless of how much they spent on it.

There are so many games that launch at $60 to their own detriment.
pr0t0typeknuckles  +   421d ago
Well I sure hope some one picks up that phone because I F@&%*$G CALLED IT
-cooler
Hicken  +   421d ago
DBZ Abridged reference. Classic.

Seriously, though. I don't get how these morons- the publishers- don't grasp how their wasteful spending is the REAL threat to their existence. OF COURSE if you put 5 trillion dollars into a game, it's gonna lose money. OF COURSE if it's not worth the asking price of $60 and people aren't buying it, you're gonna lose money.

Be smarter with your money- and you'd think these big corporations would know how to do that- and you won't have such problems.
solidjun5  +   420d ago
Square Exit comes to mind. First, they didn't need a multiplayer mode. Second, to think they were going to sell 5 million when the previous iterations didn't even do that well is just mental.
ziggurcat  +   421d ago
here is the problem with people complaining about games being $60:

in the 80's and 90's, some games were close to, and around $100 (which in today's money would be way more than $100).

so, really... $60 for a new, disc-based game *isn't that bad*.
davidmccue  +   420d ago
System (year)---Game cost in launch year---Cost today

Atari (1978)------$19.99/$29.99----- -------------$71.71/$107.35
NES (1986)--------$29.99/$49.99--- -- - ---------$59.79/$99.65
SNES (1991)-------$49.99/$59.99---- -- - --------$80.17/$96.21
N64 (1996)---------$49.99--------- -- ----- -----------$69.60
PS2 (2000)---------$49.99--------- -- - -----------$63.41
Xbox 360(2005)---$59.99------------ - ----------$67.10
#10.1 (Edited 420d ago ) | Agree(1) | Disagree(1) | Report | Reply
ziggurcat  +   420d ago
you're forgetting atari, intellivision, as well as colecovision... gaming didn't start with NES.
ChozenWoan  +   420d ago
You've forgotten some very important facts.

1. Cost of living has gone up
2. wages have stagnated or gone down
3. higher unemployment rates

Add these to the equation and games cost more than they did back then. Not to mention the reason the PS and PS2 sold so well is they had a 3 tier pricing model that provided more options for gamers. I used to spend $100 a pop and walk away with 2 New games and some change. Today your doing good to get a game and half the DLC for it.
Hicken  +   420d ago
Yeah, cost of living and wages (specifically minimum wage) have a large impact on this. It costs far more just to live today than it did back then, and people don't get paid enough to keep up with that.

And that's before you get to how many people don't even HAVE jobs.
Baka-akaB  +   420d ago
Sure costs of living are different , but even then , in some places the cost of game was way still up compared to today

Games around here sells for 120-130$ when converted . They used to cost 165$ for the snes , then around 200 back at the ps1 era .

Most local folks were buying like 1 games every two months , there was barely a used market , and it wasnt much of a discount . Especially when price only went down after a year or for a sequel . And no internet driven competition for prices .
isarai  +   420d ago
well then why didn't they practice why they're preaching? nothing is stopping you from lowering the budget, not spending a stupid amount on marketing, and selling it at a lower price, quite a few games have already done that such as Sly 4, Sniper Elite V2, Anarchy Reigns and more. all of which were considered a great success
mpnothanks  +   420d ago
And this is one of the problems with our whole economic system. Why set your price at a fair level when you can set it higher to squeeze more money out of people? It's for almost everything, so don't remind me how games aren't a necessity. Just sayin'.
Godlovesgamers  +   420d ago
The unbelievable thing is how you (Volition) managed to remove everything that made 'Red Faction: Guerilla' such a great game and success, to then produce the turd sequel that is 'Red Faction: Armageddon' and destroy the series in the process.
GinkgoID  +   420d ago
I really don't understand the comments in the article. How is this different to any business venture (and yes games are a business)? Why does the gaming industry feel special?

It's like developers think that gamers owe them a living. They made the game, so we must buy it. Life is not like that.

It is risk Vs reward. Choose your acceptable risk level, and make the best game you can for that budget. Don't throw all your eggs in one basket etc. It is just good business management, which it seems many development studios lack.

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