According to GamesIndustry, large publishers are working together in order to find an agreement to raise the cost of next-gen games. IDG President and CEO Yoshio Osaki told the outlet the problem of the unified cost for a AAA game of $60 USD, something that has not been increased since 2005.
“Even with the increase to $69.99 for next-gen, that price increase from 2005 to 2020 next-gen is only up 17%, far lower than the other comparisons.
While the cost of development and publishing have gone up, and pricing in other entertainment verticals has also gone up substantially, next-gen software pricing has not reflected these increases. $59.99 to $69.99 does not even cover these other cost increases completely, but does move it more in the proper direction.”
Something very worrying for players was the way, Osaki explains how the since the Xbox 360 and PS3’s launch, game development’s cost has risen 300 percent for some games. If we do the math, Osaki might be suggesting that $240 should be the adjusted cost of a AAA game, something that is just not going to happen. But certainly, if large publishers decide to significantly adjust the cost of a AAA game, fans should expect prices of $80-$120 for a next gen game.
“The last time that next-gen launch software pricing went up was in 2005 and 2006, when it went from $49.99 to $59.99 at the start of the Xbox 360 and PS3 generation,” he says.
In late June, Former PlayStation Executive Shay Laden explained how the current approach in AAA Games Design “not sustainable”. He explains that the unified $60 cost of a game, something that has not changed in decades, is preventing developers to have profits that match the investment made in games that are now, completely different from games from the early 2000s.
“Going into the next generation, not only is that an important role in management… It’s also, perhaps, really evaluating what we can continue to put into games — at what cost can you continue to create these games?”
“It’s been $59.99 since I started in this business, but the cost of games have gone up ten times. If you don’t have elasticity on the price-point, but you have huge volatility on the cost line, the model becomes more difficult. I think this generation is going to see those two imperatives collide.”