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Forbes: The next generation of games may increase prices, but this is unnecessary and unwise

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"Players must prepare for the next-generation consoles and more expensive games." Forbes wrote in a commentary. The reason for this article is that 2K recently announced that the PS5/Xbox Series X platform "NBA 2K21" is priced at $70, while the PS4/Xbox One platform is priced at $60. At present, this is just the pricing behavior of a game, but many people also think that this may be a "going first" move.


"After a lapse of 15 years, we may see the overall price of the game rise by $10." Forbes wrote in the article. At the same time, Forbes also believes that "for a variety of reasons, this (price increase) is actually a bad Idea, even if we can easily understand the basic logic of (price increase)."




Forbes analyzed in the article that the logical concept of the price increase is very clear: due to inflation, the price of a game in 2005 was 60 US dollars, and the amount converted to today is equivalent to 78.77 US dollars. Therefore, even if the price rises by $10, the theoretical price increase of the game is still lower than the inflation rate. More importantly, in the past few generations of game development, the development and distribution of most $60 games has actually increased significantly, and more revenue is needed to support game development.


"But players will refuse to accept this pricing, at least they will send a lot of opposition to this, there are many reasons I can think of." The author of Forbes wrote.


The first reason that Forbes puts forward is that the current form of game distribution has been very close to pure digital distribution-in recent years, the purchase of digital versions of the game has risen sharply, and even a PS5 console with no optical drive will be launched in the future; Forbes’ The author believes that considering that the CD-ROM version may be cheaper, it may be more popular in the two models.


Forbes pointed out that despite the popularity of digital distribution, players have not really realized how much the digital distribution channel has saved-the distribution of games no longer requires the manufacture of compact discs and boxes, and there is no need to use trucks and planes to transport physical disks around the world. . Selling games in digital stores (for example, Sony selling PlayStation games, Microsoft selling Xbox games), no retailer will take a slice of it. And now the pricing of digital games is almost always the same as the physical pricing of $60 (if it is not [digital version] is higher), this has to consider that the digital version can not buy "second-hand goods".


Forbes said that many players have become accustomed to large-scale game pricing below 60 US dollars, or even lower. For now, new games such as Overwatch and PUBG are priced at around US$20-40, and there are some of the most popular games (such as "Fortress Night", "League of Legends", "Call of Duty: War Zone) is completely free. Under this trend, players are required to pay $70 for new games. "It's like asking for a substantial sales decline. The price increase can't offset the sales decline." The Forbes author wrote.


In addition, players and developers have realized to a certain extent: The reason why the price of the game can now be maintained at about 60 US dollars, this is because the game has also increased the source of income in addition to the main body in the past decade (Mainly microtransactions and DLC). For example, the release price of Destiny 2 is $60, and then it launched two DLCs for $15, two expansion packs for $40, and six seasons worth $10, in addition to some in-game Decorations. In fact, this is more than $60.


The last point raised by Forbes is the rise of subscription services. Forbes cited XGP as an example: this service allows you to play newly released games without paying anything except the monthly fee. Forbes believes that this is a kind of logical progress ushered in this kind of field. From the TV and movie fields, it has been able to first glimpse this trend: Netflix, Hulu, Disney+ and other services have monthly fees of about $10, and consumers can watch To hundreds or thousands of hours of content. Forbes believes that this is also the future development direction of the game industry. "The $70 game pricing seems to be contrary to this. In the entertainment industry, I think the only thing that can think of'less worth it' is the expensive movie ticket priced at $15. Buying a ticket can only watch for 2 hours. Movie. Although I don’t know whether this is the case, the cinema industry is just about to die.” The Forbes author wrote in the article without any politeness.


"Despite the inflation, from a marketing perspective, I think such price increases are unnecessary and unwise. There are too many cheap or free options in the industry, and they earn more than after the game is released. There are also many ways to pay $60 (everyone knows it). $70 is not a wise move, even if a group of companies reach a tacit agreement, the price will be raised to this standard in the next generation."

Keywords in the article: Next generation game   Game price increase   NBA2K21