Submitted by Cayoux 102d ago | opinion piece

Video games are not more expensive at all

For some, the prices of the video games seem to be an issue these days. But in fact, they are not more expensive than they were back in the 80’s or the 90’s. GameFocus kept some old newspapers and shares with you some of the old promotions regarding NES and the Sega Genesis as they were introduced in Canada. (3DS, Industry, Nintendo America, PC, PS Vita, PS3, PS4, Retro, Sega, Wii U, Xbox 360, Xbox One)

Neonridr  +   102d ago
I dunno even based on those pictures, $79.99 and in the case of Phantasy Star - $94.99 those seem a lot more expensive than today's prices.

I remember a lot of N64 games costing $99.99 here in Canada.
mikeslemonade  +   102d ago
I cringed back in the day when some N64 games were $59.99 US.
Phoceenatic  +   102d ago
Want to cringe some more? I payed $59.99 for Quest 64. I still get a shiver when I think about it.
Vegamyster  +   102d ago
Most games were in the $70-$90 range here in Canada, i remember Pokemon Stadium was well over $100.
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mrmarx  +   102d ago
paid 90 us for street fighter 2 on snes
mpnothanks  +   102d ago
@Phoceenatic Noooo dude I loved that game.

I remember paying $80 for Majora's Mask. Thinking back on it, prices used to be all over the place. It's nice that for two generations of consoles now everyone has agreed that $60 is pretty much it.
Jeedai Infidel  +   102d ago
I paid $50 for Superman on the N64. I'll show myself out.
Gamer666  +   101d ago
I pre-ordered Donkey Kong Jr. on the Colecovision for $79.99
prodg52  +   102d ago
The Legend of Zelda and The Adventures of Link were $99 when they came out in the US with the gold cartridge.
thehobbyist  +   102d ago
Super Metroid's launch price is $120-$130 after dollar inflation.
One_Eyed_Wizard  +   102d ago
I remember Doom 64 being 140$ at Walmart's in Canada around launch. Only the rich kids bought N64 games back then... or waited for prices to seriously drop.

Edit: And that was 140$ back then. It'd be a lot more than that with the inflation.
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sinspirit  +   102d ago
Not to mention how much more money goes into making games now.
avengers1978  +   102d ago
Cartridge games were way more expensive, especially after most forms of media were going to disc(first cd, then dvd) back in the good old SNES/ genesis days games could be 60-100$ add inflation to that and your looking at 150-200$ today. Mortal Kombat, and spider- man maximum carnage were 2 of the most expensive games I ever owned. We are actually kind of lucky that gaming went to disc/digital and became more mainstream, cause prices could very well be at 200$ a game now a days.
GameSpawn  +   101d ago
^^ This ^^

Cartridges were part of the PS1's success and its lack of using them. While Nintendo chose to stick with them with the N64, Sony came into the market with CD's that were insanely cheaper and quicker to produce than circuit boards.

As a result, gamers at the time were posed a choice:
Buy a system with average game prices in the $80 range, $50 being your "bargain" price range.
Buy a system with average game prices in the $40 range, $20 being your "bargain" price range.

This goes beyond the other advantages of CD's over cartridge, such as audio and full video. The only thing cartridges had going for them was near zero loading time, but it wasn't worth double the cost.

The funny thing about all this, because the flash memory market has finally caught up with optical media in terms of capacity vs cost (within reason) handhelds are still using cartridges because of the load time advantage, but at least their prices are usually half that of new games on home consoles.
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3-4-5  +   102d ago
Funny how the media likes to forget History as if it never occurred.
Hysteria94  +   102d ago
New released Games in Australia are still like 70 to 100 but I tend to buy most of mine online except when I really want to preorder a game.
Marceles  +   102d ago
I remember paying $79.99 for Street Fighter 2 on SNES.
cgoodno  +   102d ago
Back in that day, a game didn't sell 1m copies in the first month either.

The cost wasn't because it was expensive, it's because there was but a fraction of the demand we have now. Gaming wasn't mainstream. It was a niche market.
Neonridr  +   101d ago
The NES still sold 60 million consoles, that's not exactly a small install base.
cgoodno  +   101d ago
@Neonrider: Released in 1983 and still a classic. But, look at the sales figures for the top selling games:

Super Mario Bros. (pack-in), 40.23 million (as of 1999)
Super Mario Bros. 3 (pack-in), 18 million (as of July 27, 2008)[6]
Super Mario Bros. 2, 10 million

That's after 16 years for the top game to get 40m. And the 3rd best seller only sold 10m.

GTAV sold 11.1m in the first 24 hours.

As I said, supply and demand.
awi5951  +   101d ago
I bought mortal combat 1 and mortal combat 2 both cost 80 dollars each on the day they came out. And that was in us dollars in TN.
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ATi_Elite  +   101d ago
Sega Genesis Strider was $79.99 and I beat it in like 3 hours.

anyway PC Games are WAY cheaper. $39.99 being the high point for most while a large chunk are $19.99 to 29.99 a week after release.

Sure Day 1 multiplats are usually $59.99 but you gotta search for the pre-orders which are $39.99

STEAM SALE makes them even cheaper or get a bundle of FREE games with a GPU purchase.

(excluding all the cash donated to StarCitizen and Project Cars) Guild Wars 2 was like the last PC Game I bought for over $50
Cayoux  +   102d ago
Yes, you are right.
BTBuck1  +   102d ago
what they aren't factoring in is, back then... when you bought a game, it was complete... done, that was it. Now you get the game with half the stuff locked on the disk until you buy all the pesky DLC.. once you add it all up it's like $240 for call of duty some times... but i guess that's just the business right? Bend over and take it.
punctualdork  +   102d ago
Couldn't agree more. Worse still, we're seeing games being sold while they're basically still in Beta. Steam Early Access has made it kind of acceptable for devs to sell their games while they're only half or a quarter done.
Talidan  +   102d ago
With Early Access, at least you know it's not done. That's the choice of the buyer to purchase an incomplete game, rather than getting a AAA product that you expect to be complete, but has lots of day-one DLC and plenty of bugs with it.
barb_wire  +   102d ago
Well, what about those games that could be completed in a few hours - still doesn't justify the huge prices.

I remember paying 50 pounds for 'Jurassic Park' on the SNES and I finished that game in just over 8hrs (no save games on that cartridge) There was no replay value as there wasn't a difficulty settings.. so 1 and done.
Neonridr  +   102d ago
The SNES version was such a disappointment compared to the Genesis version. I mean how were we to argue that the SNES was a better machine when this game was you going around collecting eggs. The only cool parts were the 3D Wolfenstein inspired levels when you were down in the bunkers.
barb_wire  +   102d ago

And there was a glitch in collecting those eggs too.. the more eggs you had the more lives you had.. so, everytime you saw an egg, move off the screen slightly when you collect it and it kept coming back. In no time at all you had 99 lives to complete the game.. yes those 3D levels were quite cool.. hated the ending though, I was expecting something, anything actually.. nope, we got that funky mode 7 spinning the screen widly while fading out to white over the sound of a helicopter.. BAH!
SoapShoes  +   102d ago
You can beat Sonic and Knuckles in under an hour though and it was $70 + tax.
OrangePowerz  +   102d ago
What you don't factor in is that games back at that time often had been short and they cost a lot less to make.

Most games add stuff later on like the DLCs for BF, CoD or Borderlands. Back in the day you bought that lind of stuff as an Add On disc.
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AnotherProGamer  +   102d ago
what about the games back then that were broken or glitchy and cant be patched or developers selling expansion packs as sequels like Descent 2
awi5951  +   101d ago
Well when i received a broken game back then i called the company and they gave me a new one in the mail. I guess you just dont know how to work the system. Also walmart and other retailers took games back for a refund back then.
AnotherProGamer  +   101d ago

I meant games with borken mechanics in the game
Oner  +   102d ago
The main factor that affected the cost of the games back then was the actual physical makeup of the media. It was all hardware within that cartridge, and the added cost of manufacturing that came with it just to hold those 1's & 0's compared to now.
Qrphe  +   102d ago
It was also way shorter.
DualWielding  +   102d ago
Steam, PS+, Ebay, I wish we have had those back in the day
Cayoux  +   102d ago
Galaga at $54.99
Cayoux  +   102d ago
And those Sega 3D glasses at $89.99
Wni0  +   102d ago
xbox one is 500$ no thanks
cubcake  +   102d ago
Really?! Wow, thanks for letting everyone know.
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Minute Man 721  +   102d ago
If you factoring inflation games that cost $60 in the 90s wuld be around $180 using gas price inflation as a measuring stick
cubcake  +   102d ago
The Sega Saturn was released at $399 in 1994. $636 in 2014 lol

awi5951  +   101d ago
Games were high back then but not 180 dollars high like 100 dollars is more like it.Also your money went alot further back then daily life wasn't so damn expensive back then. I had extra money to spend in that economy. I had a sega genesis and every console after. It wasn't 180 dollars bad i was buying games back then and it wasnt that bad plus we could rent game like mad then for dirt cheap. You could rent a game for a week for like 5 dollars.
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CaulkSlap  +   102d ago
Yeah cartridge games were not cheap. It's crazy to think you can now easily fit the entire library of every cartridge based game ever made onto a cheap micro SD card the size of your thumbnail.
jmc8888  +   102d ago
The funny thing is, if you use ACTUAL inflation...you know where the fake gov't statistics say ~2 percent per year, which would be ~20 percent in a decade, but just about everything costs double or triple, it really showcases how the costs of games has been massively decreasing.

The rub is that, it does become harder to purchase, because while actual inflation here in the U.S. has been 8-12 percent yearly since Clinton was in office, actual wages have decreased.

A NES for $200 in 1985 would cost about $600-650 today.
A $39.99 NES cartridge from 1985 would be about $115 now
A $79.99 SNES cartridge from 1993 would be about $170 now

So yeah getting a formerly $50-60 game on a Steam sale for $10-20 bucks, 3-8 months after release sure beats paying $115-170.

Just imagine what the state of the gaming industry would be in if we didn't have a bailout system for fraudulent derivatives in our British Empire Wall Street casino economy.
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MaxwellBuddha  +   102d ago

$200.00 (1985) = $439.21 (2014)

$39.99 (1985) = $87.82 (2014

$79.99 (1993) = $130.80 (2014)

Source: http://www.bls.gov/data/inf...

But yeah, I roll my eyes every time I read about or hear some entitled, whiny, skinny jeans-wearing, emo millennial bitching about the "high cost" of gaming today.
Donnywho  +   102d ago
Cartridges cost a lot more money to manufacture and assemble.
BakPAin  +   102d ago
Man, ive been gaming since mid 80s had I saved all that money id be RICH.
thehobbyist  +   102d ago
Had you saved all that money you could have gotten all those things at about 1/3 of the price.
BakPAin  +   101d ago
Lol...yeah true. To me it was money well spent.
T1125P  +   102d ago
Well I remember I was looking for Super Mario Bros.3 for the NES, it was sold out everywhere. But then I saw a electronics store here in my area they had it for $79.99. That's a lot of $$ back in 1990 :D But I didn't care I bought one of the greatest Mario games. I still love it :D
static360  +   102d ago
right. tell that to my wallet.
vongruetz  +   102d ago
For $50/year I get more games than I can play for my PS3/4/Vita. Things are cheaper than ever.
VTKC  +   101d ago
I remember being in a GAME retail store and I was listening to an assistant trying to convince a customer that "it is way worth it" to buy Street Fighter II World Warrior for £80! I remember my dad brought me the console with that game for £99.
MasterD919  +   101d ago
Digital games should not be priced at the same price as their retail versions...you are being cheated out of a disc- therefore, you do not have the media itself, only digitally...why am I paying the same price, if not more for a digital version of games?
awi5951  +   101d ago
Well they tried to price digital copies cheaper but retailers like walmart and target threatened to retaliate by pulling consoles off of shelves. They should have reported them to the government because that's a antitrust violation. But the console makers just took it in the butt now they are screwing us with digital sales. The only reason steam gets away with it because retailers turned their backs on pc gaming years ago.
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xDUMPWEEDx  +   101d ago
Paid $79.99 for DOOM on SNES the day it came out. Great game, horrible port.

The Dreamcast at $199 was a steal.
sander9702  +   101d ago
As a person in Sweden where games cost 75£ I would say games are pretty expensive still!
DoggyBiscuit  +   101d ago
I remember when I was a kid I use to pay 80 bucks for the DBZ games for SNES

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