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Morning Consolidation

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45. Re: Morning Consolidation Apr 4, 2012, 10:55 Beamer
 
Verno wrote on Apr 4, 2012, 10:48:
selection7 wrote on Apr 4, 2012, 00:58:
You're fighting a losing war, just like the record companies of the late 90's and early new millenium were. Now even music and movies are trying to move towards no-physical media so they can make resales, rentals, and piracy obsolete. Throwing around all the tough talk about how you're not going to accept it and you'll go indpendent only underscores your denial.

Don't do like the music industry did. It's going to happen; you want to be part of the process, not on the sideline getting left behind. And don't shoot the messenger. I'm only trying to ease the transition for some of you. One thing we can be sure of, the games industry will continue to charge what gamers are willing to pay.

What the hell are you talking about? Persistent connection requirements are a totally different thing from digital distribution. The publishers are the ones having trouble adopting in that analogy, not the consumers. Consumers are incredibly adaptive, hence used game sales and digital platforms being so successful in such little time. Good grief.

And I'd still argue one doesn't need the other. Inevitably they will, I'm still convinced games-as-a-service is coming (and I also don't think this is a bad thing, as Netflix has cut costs for millions of people, I feel games-as-a-service can, too), but for right now why is it necessary?
I don't feel it's particularly arduous, either, but enough that I don't think we need it right now.

The 360 is not the easiest thing in the world to pirate. Digital distribution, if anything, should improve that. Any time a console is running a game while connected to the internet check and see if it's properly registered. If not, don't run the game. The carrot on the stick there is that it is impossible to go online with a pirated game. If you make being online more desirable than pirating you win without harming anyone, and it shouldn't be too difficult to do that.
 
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http://www.hydrahead.com
http://www.painkillerrecords.com
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44. Re: Morning Consolidation Apr 4, 2012, 10:48 Verno
 
selection7 wrote on Apr 4, 2012, 00:58:
You're fighting a losing war, just like the record companies of the late 90's and early new millenium were. Now even music and movies are trying to move towards no-physical media so they can make resales, rentals, and piracy obsolete. Throwing around all the tough talk about how you're not going to accept it and you'll go indpendent only underscores your denial.

Don't do like the music industry did. It's going to happen; you want to be part of the process, not on the sideline getting left behind. And don't shoot the messenger. I'm only trying to ease the transition for some of you. One thing we can be sure of, the games industry will continue to charge what gamers are willing to pay.

What the hell are you talking about? Persistent connection requirements are a totally different thing from digital distribution. The publishers are the ones having trouble adopting in that analogy, not the consumers. Consumers are incredibly adaptive, hence used game sales and digital platforms being so successful in such little time. Good grief.
 
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43. Re: Morning Consolidation Apr 4, 2012, 01:30 Sepharo
 
Are you confusing digital distribution with persistent connection DRM?  
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42. Re: Morning Consolidation Apr 4, 2012, 00:58 selection7
 
Verno wrote on Apr 3, 2012, 08:43:
selection7 wrote on Apr 3, 2012, 02:12:
Here's the thing...

This is a really silly and dismissive post. First off, you're a Bluesnews reader smart guy. Second, "You'll do it because you'll do it" isn't logical. You're assuming that the gaming industry itself will just uniformly adopt whatever the big companies do when history has shown that is NOT the case. In fact right now there is a massive independent resurgence on digital platforms, the likes of which we haven't seen before. People won't just adopt whatever the industry tells them to, particularly when its inconvenient and detrimental to a platform that is supposed to be all about making things easy and convenient.

Finally, people are ok with internet functionality as it provides them benefits. Using that functionality to restrict you with no upside is a whole different matter. People will not be fine with functionality that is solely for the benefit of Microsoft that has little to no upside for the user. I have no idea why you thought mp3s were a good example either, they were widely adopted because of convenience and that industries inability to accept change and give people what they want.
You're fighting a losing war, just like the record companies of the late 90's and early new millenium were. Now even music and movies are trying to move towards no-physical media so they can make resales, rentals, and piracy obsolete. Throwing around all the tough talk about how you're not going to accept it and you'll go indpendent only underscores your denial.

Don't do like the music industry did. It's going to happen; you want to be part of the process, not on the sideline getting left behind. And don't shoot the messenger. I'm only trying to ease the transition for some of you. One thing we can be sure of, the games industry will continue to charge what gamers are willing to pay.
 
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41. Re: Morning Consolidation Apr 3, 2012, 09:21 Agrajag
 
Beamer wrote on Apr 3, 2012, 08:34:
Actually others sell it through Amazon, and it isn't a huge chunk of change.

Actually, Amazon themselves will often now buy back used items from you for Amazon credit, and will sell it used themselves... Go view some random book, movie, game, whatever on Amazon, and check in the corner near the "Add to cart" button and other buying options, and you'll see a "Trade in here" button with an amount they're willing to give you for a used copy... For instance, here's Saint's Row the Third... They'll give you $15 for a used copy... And, if you click through the used buying choices, you'll see one of the sellers is Amazon themselves selling it used for $41.02... The cool thing with Amazon though is that they do let others sell right alongside them, and are willing to compete with anyone on price, and go so far as to rank their own copy lower than other people's with a better price...
 
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40. Re: Morning Consolidation Apr 3, 2012, 08:43 Verno
 
selection7 wrote on Apr 3, 2012, 02:12:
Here's the thing. If Nintendo, Sony, and Microsoft all go the way of the constant online connection, regardless of how much posturing and whining bluesnews forum readers do, the games industry will continue to thrive. It's already bigger than the movie business and it's not even a mature industry (I'm using "mature" here in the business lingo sense). Saying otherwise is to be just as in denial as the record companies were 15 years ago about mp3s. It's going to happen eventually, and you're going to buy it. You're gamers. The new generation won't even know any better. At least you can tell your grandkids stories about the good ol' days.

This is a really silly and dismissive post. First off, you're a Bluesnews reader smart guy. Second, "You'll do it because you'll do it" isn't logical. You're assuming that the gaming industry itself will just uniformly adopt whatever the big companies do when history has shown that is NOT the case. In fact right now there is a massive independent resurgence on digital platforms, the likes of which we haven't seen before. People won't just adopt whatever the industry tells them to, particularly when its inconvenient and detrimental to a platform that is supposed to be all about making things easy and convenient.

Finally, people are ok with internet functionality as it provides them benefits. Using that functionality to restrict you with no upside is a whole different matter. People will not be fine with functionality that is solely for the benefit of Microsoft that has little to no upside for the user. I have no idea why you thought mp3s were a good example either, they were widely adopted because of convenience and that industries inability to accept change and give people what they want.

This comment was edited on Apr 3, 2012, 08:53.
 
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39. Re: Morning Consolidation Apr 3, 2012, 08:40 Beamer
 
Speaking of movie rentals and how they predate home movie viewing, don't forget that the industry created home movie viewing reluctantly, selling videos solely to rental companies for ~$120 per film. Given that tickets were usually $3 apiece back then, do the math as to why they were ok with it. But since it was secondary and a late development, their accounting was already determined and this was, at best, gravy.
Eventually they realized they can sell to enthusiastic consumers for $30, then realized they could steal from rentals for $5-$10. But, again, at this point their accounting was already done and a movie was already profitable or not. This was still gravy.

And it isn't as if being a popular rental damages other income. TV channels pay more money the more popular the movie was in the rental market, not less because more people had seen it.

Lots of gravy aside from the core business.
 
-------------
Music for the discerning:
http://www.deathwishinc.com
http://www.hydrahead.com
http://www.painkillerrecords.com
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38. Re: Morning Consolidation Apr 3, 2012, 08:34 Beamer
 
Agrajag wrote on Apr 3, 2012, 07:05:
Beamer wrote on Apr 2, 2012, 20:09:
And things like halfpricedbooks aren't comparable to GameStop because they aren't publically traded with a market cap larger than virtually anyone actually making games.

How about Amazon.com then? They sell used versions of pretty much EVERYTHING, including books, movies, music, and videogames... They large enough for you?

Actually others sell it through Amazon, and it isn't a huge chunk of change.
Can you really argue that it's nearly the proportion of book sales that GameStop's used games are of video game sales?

No. Of course not. I don't get why it's hard to understand that the proportion is what drives game developers insane. And why it's hard to understand that sitting in a post-launch recap with your team and seeing that you've sold a million copies after a year but have had three million unique players online isn't a bit disenheartening. Yes, many of those unique players come from places other than used, but many also come from used and you see zero dollars from that while GameStop probably saw $40+.

And to the guy that "huhed" me, I meant before the home movie industry. Remember, for the first many years of home movies they were available only via rental - they weren't sold to individual users. The movie industry created rentals. They then did serious damage to rentals with $5-$10 DVDs, which Netflix then easily destroyed.
Lastly, don't forget that movies have several revenue streams:
1) Theaters
2) Pay Per View
3) DVDs
4) Netflix
5) Premium Cable
6) Basic Cable
7) Network TV

Music has several as well:
1) CDs
2) Tours
3) Licensing

Games have 1:
1) Home Sales.
 
-------------
Music for the discerning:
http://www.deathwishinc.com
http://www.hydrahead.com
http://www.painkillerrecords.com
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37. Re: Morning Consolidation Apr 3, 2012, 07:05 Agrajag
 
Beamer wrote on Apr 2, 2012, 20:09:
And things like halfpricedbooks aren't comparable to GameStop because they aren't publically traded with a market cap larger than virtually anyone actually making games.

How about Amazon.com then? They sell used versions of pretty much EVERYTHING, including books, movies, music, and videogames... They large enough for you?
 
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36. Re: Morning Consolidation Apr 3, 2012, 05:58 Muscular Beaver
 
Nope, im not going to buy it. I have not bought a console since the PSX, and it will stay that way even more if they add internet constraint.
And I also know a lot of gamers that have been doing it the same way.

But you are right, there are enough idiots out there, that would even buy a radioactive turd, if it came with enough bling bling.
 
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35. Re: Morning Consolidation Apr 3, 2012, 02:12 selection7
 
Here's the thing. If Nintendo, Sony, and Microsoft all go the way of the constant online connection, regardless of how much posturing and whining bluesnews forum readers do, the games industry will continue to thrive. It's already bigger than the movie business and it's not even a mature industry (I'm using "mature" here in the business lingo sense). Saying otherwise is to be just as in denial as the record companies were 15 years ago about mp3s. It's going to happen eventually, and you're going to buy it. You're gamers. The new generation won't even know any better. At least you can tell your grandkids stories about the good ol' days.  
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34. Re: Morning Consolidation Apr 3, 2012, 01:03 Wowbagger_TIP
 
killer_roach wrote on Apr 2, 2012, 23:28:
Dades wrote on Apr 2, 2012, 21:51:
killer_roach wrote on Apr 2, 2012, 21:43:
Where your argument falls down is that you're assuming that, all things being equal, prices would have stayed in the $50-60 range otherwise. Considering the increase of costs in the industry, that seems highly unlikely.

Prices have stayed where they are because the market has grown significantly, not because big publishers are so nice to us. Let's embrace the alarmist view and say that without the publishers then prices would rise, so what? I would welcome paying more quality products and less for ones that don't merit the cost. People say the quality games are subsidized by the mass market titles but the publishers don't care to do that anymore. Everything has to move a few million units or there likely will not be a follow up at all.

Hate to say it, but whether you think it's the case or not, these major publishers stay in business because they ARE being nice to their customers. If not, they don't buy from them, and they go out of business. They have to maximize profits as well, yes, but without giving the customers at least their money's worth (if not more) on a consistent basis, they don't stick around.
Umm... how is that "being nice"? That's just pricing for maximized profits. There's no "nice" involved.

killer_roach wrote on Apr 2, 2012, 23:28:
In terms of seeking fewer AAA-quality titles in favor of downmarket fare, it's all a process. Nobody knows from the get-go what games will end up being any good - even developers with established track records make the occasional stinker. The system in place rewards success and punishes failure, and we end up with a fairly wide variety of product as a result. Even better, if people don't think they're being served, they can make their voices known by supporting projects that are more to their tastes, or the enterprising can start their own studios in the hopes of becoming rich in the pursuit of an undersupported niche. Overall, I think the system is working far better than many would like to think.
The market it working well, yet they want to try to do things to restrict used games. Somehow I think that if they are successful at that, it will backfire. I'm sure they'll find a convenient scapegoat though.
 
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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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33. Re: Morning Consolidation Apr 2, 2012, 23:28 killer_roach
 
Dades wrote on Apr 2, 2012, 21:51:
killer_roach wrote on Apr 2, 2012, 21:43:
Where your argument falls down is that you're assuming that, all things being equal, prices would have stayed in the $50-60 range otherwise. Considering the increase of costs in the industry, that seems highly unlikely.

Prices have stayed where they are because the market has grown significantly, not because big publishers are so nice to us. Let's embrace the alarmist view and say that without the publishers then prices would rise, so what? I would welcome paying more quality products and less for ones that don't merit the cost. People say the quality games are subsidized by the mass market titles but the publishers don't care to do that anymore. Everything has to move a few million units or there likely will not be a follow up at all.

Hate to say it, but whether you think it's the case or not, these major publishers stay in business because they ARE being nice to their customers. If not, they don't buy from them, and they go out of business. They have to maximize profits as well, yes, but without giving the customers at least their money's worth (if not more) on a consistent basis, they don't stick around.

In terms of seeking fewer AAA-quality titles in favor of downmarket fare, it's all a process. Nobody knows from the get-go what games will end up being any good - even developers with established track records make the occasional stinker. The system in place rewards success and punishes failure, and we end up with a fairly wide variety of product as a result. Even better, if people don't think they're being served, they can make their voices known by supporting projects that are more to their tastes, or the enterprising can start their own studios in the hopes of becoming rich in the pursuit of an undersupported niche. Overall, I think the system is working far better than many would like to think.
 
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32. Re: Morning Consolidation Apr 2, 2012, 23:16 Wowbagger_TIP
 
Beamer wrote on Apr 2, 2012, 20:09:
Dades wrote on Apr 2, 2012, 18:42:
That's a pretty iffy argument. If it's an online game, then most likely your used copy is tied to an account and won't work anyway. As for maintaining servers, that's only done as long as it's profitable anyway, and then they are shut down, as we see happen all the time.

Preach it. Any business model where the price of simple operating expenses like servers isn't priced into the box is extremely flawed and can't be blamed on the customers. The servers and associated labour is often retasked from one game to another while abandoning the older software anyway. Many other industries deal with these things all the time and don't demand handouts from customers because they have to deal with resale.

Are the greedy console companies going to give people lower prices in exchange for their loss of rights? More sales like PC customers get? Fuck no.

I said flat-out it wasn't a particularly strong argument, but it is a distinguishing feature relative to the other industry verno mentioned.

Movie rentals aren't quite the same because rentals existed before the movie industry.
Huh?

Beamer wrote on Apr 2, 2012, 20:09:
And things like halfpricedbooks aren't comparable to GameStop because they aren't publically traded with a market cap larger than virtually anyone actually making games.
What difference does that make? So they're big. They're far from the only game in town (NPI). For movies we've had Blockbuster and later Netflix, among thousands of smaller companies. For books we've had publicly funded libraries as well as thousands of for-profit companies. Used music stores are just as prolific. I really don't see this argument holding any water.
 
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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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31. Re: Morning Consolidation Apr 2, 2012, 23:07 Sepharo
 
GameStop trades in used movies as well. When I worked there a decade ago I got the Band of Brothers tin "used" brand new for $90 with 10% employee discount. I think it normally retailed for $120 at the time.

edit: That turned out to be a total exaggeration. It was $69.99 used, no idea what new price was at the time. And with my discount I got it at $59.35

Can't tell if I dislike or like proving myself wrong.

This comment was edited on Apr 2, 2012, 23:14.
 
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30. Re: Morning Consolidation Apr 2, 2012, 21:51 Dades
 
killer_roach wrote on Apr 2, 2012, 21:43:
Where your argument falls down is that you're assuming that, all things being equal, prices would have stayed in the $50-60 range otherwise. Considering the increase of costs in the industry, that seems highly unlikely.

Prices have stayed where they are because the market has grown significantly, not because big publishers are so nice to us. Let's embrace the alarmist view and say that without the publishers then prices would rise, so what? I would welcome paying more quality products and less for ones that don't merit the cost. People say the quality games are subsidized by the mass market titles but the publishers don't care to do that anymore. Everything has to move a few million units or there likely will not be a follow up at all.
 
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29. Re: Morning Consolidation Apr 2, 2012, 21:43 killer_roach
 
Dades wrote on Apr 2, 2012, 18:42:
That's a pretty iffy argument. If it's an online game, then most likely your used copy is tied to an account and won't work anyway. As for maintaining servers, that's only done as long as it's profitable anyway, and then they are shut down, as we see happen all the time.

Preach it. Any business model where the price of simple operating expenses like servers isn't priced into the box is extremely flawed and can't be blamed on the customers. The servers and associated labour is often retasked from one game to another while abandoning the older software anyway. Many other industries deal with these things all the time and don't demand handouts from customers because they have to deal with resale.

Are the greedy console companies going to give people lower prices in exchange for their loss of rights? More sales like PC customers get? Fuck no.

Where your argument falls down is that you're assuming that, all things being equal, prices would have stayed in the $50-60 range otherwise. Considering the increase of costs in the industry, that seems highly unlikely.
 
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28. Re: Morning Consolidation Apr 2, 2012, 20:41 Bhruic
 
I can't speak for now, but movie rental product used to be purchased directly from the distributors (studios sold to distributors at a higher rate) at a far higher rate than they were sold to the public for. ie: $30 to retail, $110 to the video store

That's certainly true, but I don't think it disproves the point. Rentals were a significant market for movies. I wouldn't be surprised to find that, at least at one point, there were more rentals than purchases. So while there hasn't been an exact match to gaming, there have been somewhat comparable situations.

The film studios were involved in the movie rental business model. Pubs were not involved in the video game rental business model.

Again, whose fault is that? Back 20 years ago, I actually rented games for the PC. There was a local store near my university that did so. Second year, they closed down because publishers were annoyed with them. Imagine if they'd embraced that model instead of worrying so much about piracy? Unfortunately, where formats won for movies (VCRs and DVD burners being legal), they didn't do so for games, which is why things are where they are now. Publishers bit themselves in the ass.

Although it's worth noting that Blockbuster did, in fact, rent out games as well as movies.
 
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27. Re: Morning Consolidation Apr 2, 2012, 20:09 Beamer
 
Dades wrote on Apr 2, 2012, 18:42:
That's a pretty iffy argument. If it's an online game, then most likely your used copy is tied to an account and won't work anyway. As for maintaining servers, that's only done as long as it's profitable anyway, and then they are shut down, as we see happen all the time.

Preach it. Any business model where the price of simple operating expenses like servers isn't priced into the box is extremely flawed and can't be blamed on the customers. The servers and associated labour is often retasked from one game to another while abandoning the older software anyway. Many other industries deal with these things all the time and don't demand handouts from customers because they have to deal with resale.

Are the greedy console companies going to give people lower prices in exchange for their loss of rights? More sales like PC customers get? Fuck no.

I said flat-out it wasn't a particularly strong argument, but it is a distinguishing feature relative to the other industry verno mentioned.

Movie rentals aren't quite the same because rentals existed before the movie industry. It's like saying someone born with one leg will react the same way as someone that loses it in his 30s.
And things like halfpricedbooks aren't comparable to GameStop because they aren't publically traded with a market cap larger than virtually anyone actually making games.
 
-------------
Music for the discerning:
http://www.deathwishinc.com
http://www.hydrahead.com
http://www.painkillerrecords.com
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26. Re: Morning Consolidation Apr 2, 2012, 19:47 Krovven
 
Bhruic wrote on Apr 2, 2012, 17:47:
There was, for a long, LONG time, multiple companies dedicated to renting out movies. There still are, in different formats.

I can't speak for now, but movie rental product used to be purchased directly from the distributors (studios sold to distributors at a higher rate) at a far higher rate than they were sold to the public for. ie: $30 to retail, $110 to the video store. But they could also choose to return the product back to the distributors to get some money back when they were done with those copies. This is only a brief & incomplete example, as there were many other rules and other business practices behind the model. Bottomline is the film companies got their share.

I can't speak for how things are now with movie rentals so I won't try.

But the point being is video game rentals never had the same business model that movie rentals had, so comparing them is far from accurate. The film studios were involved in the movie rental business model. Pubs were not involved in the video game rental business model.

 
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