Games cost too much money

Discussion in 'General Gaming' started by truncheon5000, Apr 13, 2012.

  1. truncheon5000

    truncheon5000 Rookie

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    I read this article and it sort of reinforced the feeling I had that game companies are putting the squeeze on customers these days to the entire industry's detriment.

    Games are mainstream entertainment products but priced as extravagant luxury items. We are treated as cash cows and charged like bulls but it can't last much longer.

    DLC and endless patches are making it harder to swallow the premium pricing system. Eliminating used games with the new consoles will help balance the companies books slightly but the fact remains that I'm sure every gamer has felt a little sore after being raped by the business model.

    The convoluted business model of PC gaming especially has been sadly strangling the growth of what should have always been the dominant gaming platform. It's sad that politics and retarded business decisions could possibly drive the industry into the ground (again).

    I really think the game industry doomsday clock is ticking closer to about 11.45pm what do you guys think?
     
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  2. madster111

    madster111 Rookie

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    Well, new console games cost $100+ here.

    So i can either have a new EA game, or my $20,000 car and a couple 600+ page books.

    So yeah, games are pretty damn overpriced.

    Video game companies are pricing themselves out of sales, and yes, this is partly Microsoft and Sonys fault. All those HD graphics cost money and as such take away the importance of a good story and the cost gets passed onto consumers for a 500% profit.

    And this whole war against the used game market is a fucking joke. The entitled dipshits seem to think that somehow they can change how the entire world ECONOMY is based for their gain.
    You buy a product, you use it as much as you want, and you sell it for a cheaper price. This is how the entire world has worked for thousands of years.
    You don't buy a new car and then get told you can never resell it.
    Even the scum that is the movie industry (go see how much money movie theaters and anyone in a non-starring role make) hasn't stooped that low.


    I'm getting sick of the video games industry. Remember back in the 90s and early 00s when people actually cared about making good games instead of how many private jets they can afford?
     
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  3. maca2kx

    maca2kx Rookie

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    The problem is that apart from the triple A guaranteed sellers (which can be sold for whatever price because fools will pay it) no game is guaranteed to make cost back and for some reason once a person/business makes it to a certain level they think it's a good idea to raise item prices to counter poor sales, not realising that doing so will discourage further sales.
     
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  4. cyberjim2000

    cyberjim2000 Veteran

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    That and I'm pretty sure most of the budget for games go into marketing which is higher now than they were in the 80s and 90s.
     
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  5. Bretimus_v2

    Bretimus_v2 Hey kiddo!

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    I'm sorry, but when you look at the current size of most production teams, the current use of not just voice actors but celebrity voice actors, the effort put into making not just some jumbled MIDIfile BGM, but a full score, and the host of other ways in which games have improved...it makes absolute fucking sense that they charge $60. Not to mention, QA, r&d, marketing, online support, you can't just release a game and move on to the next project with your people anymore, you have to keep pele on to fix bugs or whatever other crap buyers find, or maintain your mp servers. I hate paying 60 bucks as much as the next guy, but it is an easy ix wait a month and a half. Be patient young ones for the $20 price drop is nigh. Or wait another two months and catch it for $30. Price is justified in my mind.

    And no cutting used games or switching to digital distribution won't change the initial price but it will speed up the devaluation of the game.
     
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  6. danielrbischoff

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    Brett's got a point about the cost of production these days, but truthfully the way games go on sale so quickly, I think the hobby is plenty affordable for smart shoppers.
     
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  7. Green_Lantern

    Green_Lantern Forum Moderator
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  8. Longo_2_guns

    Longo_2_guns Forum Moderator
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    I'll agree with Bret to some extent, but you have to keep in mind that about two thirds of those things have been around since the late 90's.

    Development costs are WAAAAAAAAAY too much, and it's having a negative effect on the industry. Honestly, unless the new consoles are easier to develop for than ever before, things are going nowhere good.

    Which, honestly, could be good. A nice purging fire to clear out all the underbrush and let new life spring up.
     
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  9. Rainemaida

    Rainemaida Veteran

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    Thus why I PC game + TPB for all my single-player adventures.
     
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  10. FrozenBacon

    FrozenBacon Veteran

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    I don't buy a game if it costs more than $20 these days. Only game that I might break that rule with is Diablo III. I don't think that game will drop in price anytime soon, stores are still selling Starcraft 2 for $50.

    It costs $12 to get a movie ticket. The most expensive video game ever made was GTA3, and that cost $100 million. Average movie budget is around $150 million. The average video game budget is $20 million.

    Of course more people go to the movies than play video games, but I don't think that requires nearly a 600% cost increase to enjoy this form of entertainment.

    Halo 3 got $300 million its first week. Avatar got $232 million. Halo cost $150 million to make. Avatar was around $230 million (there are a lot different numbers on the net, this is the cheapest).
     
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  11. Green_Lantern

    Green_Lantern Forum Moderator
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    I see where you are coming from, but look at the difference in amount of hours of enjoyment you get out of a movie vs. a video game. If a movie ticket costs $12 for a 2 hour or so movie, where a video game can give upwards of 100+ hours of enjoyment - and I do realize there are plenty of games out there that will only last 10 or so hours. So in terms of price per hour, you can get a lot more out of a video game than a movie even though the movie is priced much lower.
     
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  12. Bretimus_v2

    Bretimus_v2 Hey kiddo!

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    What GL said. Plus the amount of post-release upkeep for a movie in comparison can't be as much as a video game (to be honest, I'm speaking from a position of ignorance on that call, buuuuuuut...) because where both of them have to worry about distribution and all that, game companies are still fixing bugs...well, some of them...basically, the crap I said in my original comment.

    I'm not saying I like to pay a lot, but I don't think we are quite at the "fuck this price point bull shit" point.
     
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  13. FrozenBacon

    FrozenBacon Veteran

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    That doesn't matter, this is about game developers charging too much for their product. When I was a kid I got hours of entertainment out of paper airplanes. Does that mean it is ok for the paper companies to charge me extra for a pack of paper?

    I enjoy video games as much as the next guy, but I'm not going to pay more than what I think is necessary, which is why I usually don't spend more than $20 on a video game anymore.

    As for post release maintenance, the price put on that is only significant if the game is a MMORPG. A group of 5 or so dudes crunching code and maybe 2 artists drawing new pictures isn't exactly as expensive as paying 100+ people to make an entire game.
     
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  14. Green_Lantern

    Green_Lantern Forum Moderator
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    If that's your point then it was kind of silly to originally bring up one of the most inflated forms of entertainment out there.


    In the end, it all comes down to the beauty of supply and demand. Publishers wouldn't put out a product for $60 if people wouldn't buy it, hence tons of 20-30 dollar sales of games released not even a month earlier.
     
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  15. madster111

    madster111 Rookie

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    Voice actors are very cheap, and the only reason to use 'celebrity' voice actors is for the e-peen factor. Unless you somehow manage to get Morgan Freeman onto your videogame. Then you would take all of my money.

    As for music, if you have a look around on the internet at some places that sell music, you could theoretically have a full score for most modern video games for less than $500.
    EG: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0Pe82-3tGdQ
    That's the background music for 1 urban section of your game for $29.90. License it and modify it a bit and that's the music for the intro sequence.
    Again, only reason to hire a full band to do a full score for your game is for that penis factor.

    Game production is fairly expensive, yes, but it's simply not expensive enough to justify the cost.
    Let's make a budget for a brand new studio making their first shooting game from scratch:
    Sound effects: $1000
    Music: $10000
    Voice actors: $15000
    Yearly pay for a team of 25 people: $1.2mil
    Cryengine 3: No initial cost
    Various expenses for engine: $75000
    Building: $50000/yr
    Computers: $50000
    Marketing: $25000

    So that brings the total cost for a fairly small game to around $3 million after a couple years development.
    Let's round that all the way up to $5mil to allow for screwups.

    Cryengine takes 20% of the profit from each sold. Another, say, 5% for boxing and shipping.
    So let's say you sell it for $40 each copy for 360 and PS3 and $30 for PC through steam (-55% total)
    You get 75,000 360 sales in the first month, 50,000 PS3 sales and 25,000 PC sales.
    You've pretty much broken even, and 75000 360 sales in a month is known as 'poor'. To see how well even a shit game sells, see how many kane and lynch 2 sold in the first month.
     
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  16. Bretimus_v2

    Bretimus_v2 Hey kiddo!

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    Super, you just proposed a cut-rate video game budget. I applaud you. Not sarcasm.
     
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  17. madster111

    madster111 Rookie

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    It's only cut-rate if the people working on it don't care about the finished product or if they have a job after the game's released.

    5-10 million was around the budget that Metro 2033 was developed on, and it's a great game with a good following and everyone's waiting for 2034/Last Light and the expected sales for it are very high.

    Hard Reset was made with a low budget as well, and apart from being fairly short it was a solid game and got decent sales.

    The biggest expenses are the game engine and the people themselves. I based the budget around US prices, not really knowing how much most video game minions make over there, but that sort of pay is pretty high.
    The game engine, in the example i used cryengine, is another big expense. Most of them want a cut from the games sales, others want a ridiculous upfront cost, and others are made for massive expense in house by the developers and used on maybe 2 or 3 games.

    If someone came along and made an engine that was easy to use, could support DX11 on the PC and could be used to release games on the 360 and PS3 for, say, a 5 or 10% charge, the prices could afford to drop a little bit more.


    As it is, games are still overpriced. The amount of sales most games are getting means that $20 or $30 is all they need to make a reasonable profit. Even accounting for retail stores needing profit, games shouldn't cost more than $50 when new.
    Skyrim currently sells for $65 in my country, which is around $67usd.
     
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  18. Longo_2_guns

    Longo_2_guns Forum Moderator
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    Sins of a Solar Empire cost a total of 1 million to make, and less to make the expansions. They sold the total package for 40 bucks.

    So, yeah. Cheap stuff can be pretty amazing.
     
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  19. used44

    used44 Forum Moderator
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    Metro 2033 was shit though.
     
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  20. Bretimus_v2

    Bretimus_v2 Hey kiddo!

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    Those prices are a bit ridiculous. Guess thats the price you pay to be in a " better" country than the US. But, At no point did I say that all games should be the same price. There is nothing worse than paying 60 for something tha barely warrants 40. That is actually a big problem, everything need not be priced the same but that's exactly how they do it. 60 bucks for a new release, 40 for a motion release.

    Again, like GL pointed out, price point is simple supply and demand. And besides what are you getting all upset about. We both know where you get your games from. ;)
     
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