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On Game Prices & Inflation

Ars Technica has a look at game prices over the years, pointing out the cost of new games has steadily dropped. Though the prices of games look about the same as they have for years, they are only unchanged if you make like the Federal Reserve and pretend inflation doesn't exist. Taking inflation into account shows the current equivalent of 1990s prices for games from the N64 and Genesis era approaching the $100.00 USD mark.

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41. Re: On Game Prices & Inflation Oct 7, 2010, 03:14 Prez
 
Back on topic (can't complain since it's partially my fault that this went off-topic ), I thought I'd add that gaming isn't the only industry that has, whatever the reasons, deviated from adherence to inflationary price increases. I've read in the past that if gas (for cars) in the US had increased in price at the same rate as, say, a gallon of milk over the last 25 years, fuel prices would be more than double what they are now on average. Of course with the massive profits brought in year after year by "big oil", don't expect it to be pointed out very often. Different industries see pricing rise differently due to myriad of factors. To point to inflation as the sole decider of whether or not your product is priced properly for a given market or not is naive at best, and disingenuous at worst.  
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Goodbye my Monte boy. May you rest in the peace you never knew in life.
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40. Re: On Game Prices & Inflation Oct 6, 2010, 23:09 Sepharo
 
Wowbagger_TIP wrote on Oct 6, 2010, 22:43:
To be honest? The similarities between Obama and Chretien are striking if you're interested in politics and read about them. While chretien did some good things, he also did a bang-up job of splitting the country between everyone else and western provinces. Everyone else and Quebec, and everyone else and liberals(party).

While we've had two minority parliaments(generally 'okay' for canuck politics), 12 years at the hand of the liberal party have made people very wary of any party with a clear majority.
And that's like Obama, how?

Some think Obama is doing the dividing and not demagogic conservatives.

It's hard to fight against such tactics while still trying to be rational. Part of the reason why liberals get accused of being "pussies" is because they try not to black-and-white every issue. Obviously there are extremists and moderates on both sides but it does seem to be getting harder to find republican moderates. Finding moderate democrats is pretty damn easy though, just look for the clowns that help defeat Obama's initiatives despite the majority. Or these idiots running campaign ads proudly painting themselves as standing up to Obama and Pelosi... Woweee, republicans would kick you out of the party before you could count to two for a shenanigan like that.
 
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39. Re: On Game Prices & Inflation Oct 6, 2010, 22:43 Wowbagger_TIP
 
To be honest? The similarities between Obama and Chretien are striking if you're interested in politics and read about them. While chretien did some good things, he also did a bang-up job of splitting the country between everyone else and western provinces. Everyone else and Quebec, and everyone else and liberals(party).

While we've had two minority parliaments(generally 'okay' for canuck politics), 12 years at the hand of the liberal party have made people very wary of any party with a clear majority.
And that's like Obama, how?
 
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"The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, but wiser people so full of doubts." -- Bertrand Russell (I think...)
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38. Re: On Game Prices & Inflation Oct 6, 2010, 20:13 Mashiki Amiketo
 
Prez wrote on Oct 6, 2010, 16:57:
Obama was the President of Canada too?

Sorry couldn't resist.
To be honest? The similarities between Obama and Chretien are striking if you're interested in politics and read about them. While chretien did some good things, he also did a bang-up job of splitting the country between everyone else and western provinces. Everyone else and Quebec, and everyone else and liberals(party).

While we've had two minority parliaments(generally 'okay' for canuck politics), 12 years at the hand of the liberal party have made people very wary of any party with a clear majority.
 
--
"For every human problem,
there is a neat, simple solution;
and it is always wrong."
--H.L. Mencken
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37. Re: On Game Prices & Inflation Oct 6, 2010, 20:03 Sepharo
 
Erebus wrote on Oct 6, 2010, 19:35:
Gamers are costing themselves the epic experience of big-budget games by not recognizing the incredible value for the entertainment dollar. I hope we all like little game-bite Ipad experiences.

One of my friends has been squeezed pretty tight on spending money lately and I can never convince him to buy games in the $30-50 to play with me. But he buys like three or four $5 games a week. Kind of pisses me off to see a once hardcore gamer wasting money on games simply because "What a deal!". There's a reason they're that cheap. If he would just hold off on purchasing a few he could have enough money to buy something good.

I hope you're reading this!
 
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36. Re: On Game Prices & Inflation Oct 6, 2010, 19:48 PHJF
 
And theoretically you could walk down the street and a new game will materialize out of thin air and land in your hands but it's not sensible to base game acquisitions on things that aren't ABSOLUTE.  
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Steam + PSN: PHJF
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35. Re: On Game Prices & Inflation Oct 6, 2010, 19:35 Erebus
 
Games remain one of the best entertainment values in terms of cost per hour, even though there's a lot of complaining about the cost of the $60 game. Even counting those games you purchase and quit after 2 hours, the average vs. movies, pro sports, or even bowling makes video games the best value around.

Many in the industry characterize the game-type battle as one of cost (retail "AAA" box vs. casual/downloadable), but I think it's actually a battle of "epic 15-hour adventure" vs. "30-second game-bite" experience.

Gamers are costing themselves the epic experience of big-budget games by not recognizing the incredible value for the entertainment dollar. I hope we all like little game-bite Ipad experiences.
 
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34. Re: On Game Prices & Inflation Oct 6, 2010, 19:08 eRe4s3r
 
Its not good gaming but your advice is just plain bad economics. Particularly on Steam a Sale can happen even with games that are still new and "good" so buying it without a sale is likely going to bite you later on. Particularly with xmas coming up.  
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33. Re: On Game Prices & Inflation Oct 6, 2010, 18:58 PHJF
 
Games that nobody buys are $10 less than a year after release. Valve can put up L4D for cheap because it's so absolutely old that anyone who was remotely interested in it already bought it. Any money they make on it now is just a bonus.

It's not good for gaming if you wait to buy a good game for dirt cheap. Pay full price for the sparsely-released quality products.
 
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32. Re: On Game Prices & Inflation Oct 6, 2010, 18:33 Prez
 
space captain wrote on Oct 6, 2010, 17:47:
Prez wrote on Oct 6, 2010, 16:57:
If you mean important, as in nearly bankrupted the country, tore it in half, polarized politics,...

Bush was the President of Canada too?

Sorry couldn't resist.

LOL Touche!
 
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Goodbye my Monte boy. May you rest in the peace you never knew in life.
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31. Re: On Game Prices & Inflation Oct 6, 2010, 18:30 Tumbler
 
Games cost too much in general. Simple supply and demand is driving prices down, there are too many companies making too many games for everyone to buy and play all of them. consumers are picking and choosing which ones they want and skipping others which causes those companies to cut prices, other companies have to respond because that causes consumers to spend more money there and less money on that other game. This isn't finite resource that runs out, you just burn more copies of the game if more people want to buy them. If this were something like milk and you couldn't instantly and freely create new product that would be a different story, then prices would go up. Consumers aren't paying for development, they're paying for retail products, those have gone down in value. Development costs have gone up which publishers pay, so....thanx publishers!  
99gamers.com-Game trading site, PC digital trading!
Kickstarter "Game Developer"!
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30. Re: On Game Prices & Inflation Oct 6, 2010, 18:14 Fang
 
And yeah we do get a good part of American history up here when we're younger, and in highschool.

Well, being the 51st state, that's important now isn't it?
 
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29. Re: On Game Prices & Inflation Oct 6, 2010, 18:11 Wowbagger_TIP
 
Pretty much the same thing applies to games as well. You may have to wait a little longer than with movies for the price drops but it works the same way. Over time the game will be reduced in price, patched up, and maybe even extra content released for it. Just look at the L4D sale Steam is having atm. For $7 you get the game, less than a year since it was released for $50. Or you can get Demigod from Impulse for $6, just a few examples.
Oh sure. I think it happens more quickly with PC games than console games, but you definitely can get a better deal if you wait long enough. Unfortunately you still can't loan, trade or resell them in a lot of cases because they're starting to tie them to accounts.

Again though, games are coming out buggier and even unfinished, while you don't really see that with movies. They don't leave out a few scenes and the movie generally won't crash your player. I really can't sympathize with the plight of publishers because they created their own mess, and we get less and less for our money as a result.
 
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"The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, but wiser people so full of doubts." -- Bertrand Russell (I think...)
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28. Re: On Game Prices & Inflation Oct 6, 2010, 17:47 space captain
 
Prez wrote on Oct 6, 2010, 16:57:
If you mean important, as in nearly bankrupted the country, tore it in half, polarized politics,...

Bush was the President of Canada too?

Sorry couldn't resist.
 
Go forth, and kill!
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27. Re: On Game Prices & Inflation Oct 6, 2010, 16:57 Prez
 
If you mean important, as in nearly bankrupted the country, tore it in half, polarized politics,...

Obama was the President of Canada too?

Sorry couldn't resist.
 
Avatar 17185
 
Goodbye my Monte boy. May you rest in the peace you never knew in life.
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26. Re: On Game Prices & Inflation Oct 6, 2010, 16:48 TheCruncher
 
Unfortunatly the pay scale has not increased with inflation either, my pay in 1985 was 7.25 an hour, same job pays the same rate today, no increase. I have since changed jobs several times for the better, but the same principal applies. Job 20 years ago = same pay today for same job  
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25. Re: On Game Prices & Inflation Oct 6, 2010, 16:21 SpectralMeat
 
Wowbagger_TIP wrote on Oct 6, 2010, 16:12:
At least with movies I have the option of paying full theater price, or waiting for it to hit PPV, or waiting for it to hit Netflix, so I can pick the price that I'm willing to risk on it.

Pretty much the same thing applies to games as well. You may have to wait a little longer than with movies for the price drops but it works the same way. Over time the game will be reduced in price, patched up, and maybe even extra content released for it. Just look at the L4D sale Steam is having atm. For $7 you get the game, less than a year since it was released for $50. Or you can get Demigod from Impulse for $6, just a few examples.

 
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24. Re: On Game Prices & Inflation Oct 6, 2010, 16:12 Wowbagger_TIP
 
To be fair to the industry, most shitty movies don't get fixed up after the fact for free
Yeah, but most movies don't refuse to work just because I have a Toshiba DVD player, and don't crash when I hit pause either. I'm not even talking about the quality of the content. That's certainly a subjective thing, and while it's easier to review movies than games for that sort of stuff, I can accept that ultimately you take your chances with it. At least with movies I have the option of paying full theater price, or waiting for it to hit PPV, or waiting for it to hit Netflix, so I can pick the price that I'm willing to risk on it.
 
Avatar 9540
 
"The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, but wiser people so full of doubts." -- Bertrand Russell (I think...)
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23. Re: On Game Prices & Inflation Oct 6, 2010, 16:00 Mashiki Amiketo
 
Verno wrote on Oct 6, 2010, 14:59:
Whether anything important happens or not is of course subjective but Chretien is a pretty important figure in Canadian society. For the record I'm an American by birth
If you mean important, as in nearly bankrupted the country, tore it in half, polarized politics, and was part of the largest criminal fraud investigation while interfering with the investigation, in Canadian history. Then yes, I agree. Very important.

And yeah we do get a good part of American history up here when we're younger, and in highschool.

Regardless, and back to the topic. From Canada prices have dropped ~$20-40 in the last 10 years. I still have a copy of IDW2(independence war 2) with a 89.99 price tag on it, from EB Games. And a pile of other games which were $49-70 in the US, and were priced $59-99 up here. These days, the price has stabilized pretty well into parity, probably because people here decided enough was enough and started buying from the US.
 
--
"For every human problem,
there is a neat, simple solution;
and it is always wrong."
--H.L. Mencken
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22. Re: On Game Prices & Inflation Oct 6, 2010, 15:24 Prez
 
Tied with the inflation factor is the fact that the dollar is only worth about 30% of what it used to in the 90's. This means the dollar simply doesn't go as far as it used to. A hundred-dollar game simply would not sell the numbers to even match the revenue that a $50 or $60 game would generate. Lets see, I can buy Modern Warfare 3 or fill my gas tank 2 or 3 times.

Also, before we start shedding a tear for the poor dev's, let's also remember that they have cut costs to maintain potential profitability. As Beamer alluded to, manuals have become extinct (no, those little brochures that come in the tiny box are not manuals). Take a look at the extras that come with GOG's newest release, Icewind Dale. A 200-page manual, plus a map and foldout. The packaging is but a fraction of what it used to be, and this doesn't even take into account that digital distribution has no shipping or packaging costs at all.
 
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