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What will game cost on release?


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Thing is, since the game is just a digital download and they don't have to pay for manuals, boxes, shipment etc, the game should have a relativly low price, compared to shipped products.

 We usually (always?) see that: a game has the same high price either you download it or purchase it from a retail store. Makes no sense.

How does that negate the fact that making a profit is not bad?

 

Never said that. Making money is necessary. But profit must be reasonable. And charging a game that is just a digital download the same ammount of money with a game that is a physical copy (dvd, box, manuals etc) makes no sense. It's overpriced. We're talking about the industry in general now, not for PoE in particular, since we cannot know it's price yet (although, judging from the 35$ backing tier to get one copy, I believe this will be the initial price).

Edited by Sedrefilos
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Market dictates the price regardless if it's digital or physical. Just because the digital copy might be the same price as the physical copy means there's more demand for digital and the market will react to that in the form of its price. When demand slows down, price will change. You can't blame the developer because the market has a price that you don't like.

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That goes without saying. There are games I wouldn't buy on release day due to price and will wait until it's in the $2 bin. And there are many people who do just that. The market reacts and people will buy games at a price they are comfortable with.

Not perhaps strictly on topic, but wow games are a weird market. Especially for the big AAA games. The prices are stickier than just about anything else you can think of.

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That goes without saying. There are games I wouldn't buy on release day due to price and will wait until it's in the $2 bin. And there are many people who do just that. The market reacts and people will buy games at a price they are comfortable with.

Not perhaps strictly on topic, but wow games are a weird market. Especially for the big AAA games. The prices are stickier than just about anything else you can think of.

 

 

Yeah it's fairly weird, but I'd say it's more that they rigidly adhere to the appearance of stickyness while constantly embracing some of the most innovative models.  But, the entire pricing and delivery model does get contorted (special editions and day one DLC) to maintain the appearance of the $60 price.

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..some more shamelessly than others. On a current PSN "pre-purchase" ad ahead of the "Destiny" release, they go for selling things like: "We will never run out of stock! [with digital downloads]". Play it on release-day, get early beta-access, get an extra avatar and a skin. The digital edition costs €99.99. It's called "The Digital Guardian Edition".

 

*shrug*

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Yeah, probably my least favorite thing ever is the "Get a whole bunch of digital goodies, so we'll charge like 30+ dollars more!" I mean, at least with physical goods, you have something. With digital goods, they didn't have to print you a cloth map or give you an actual art book, and yet they're going to charge $10 a pop for such things?

 

Or, especially the packs that just come with a bunch of custom avatars and "special abilities!" and stuff. They're obligated not to make those things ever functionally useful past like the first 10% of a game, lest everyone complain about how people who pay more get better gameplay. So, they pretty much have to keep it "aesthetically unique." So, you're paying more than 5-or-so extra bucks just to have some spiffy stuff, which you will discard and never use again an hour into the game, max.

 

Of course... if people will pay it, people will pay it. I'm more loathing the concept than really blaming the people setting the price and devising that in the first place.

Should we not start with some Ipelagos, or at least some Greater Ipelagos, before tackling a named Arch Ipelago? 6_u

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Usually it's more about the idea that "some people" will pay for it. And that if they don't buy it... the digital GUARDIAN edition.. in sufficient numbers, then the concept is untenable, and they'll pull the plug on "digital" and go back to disc again.

 

Specially with Sony and Microsoft, who are heavily involved in formats and platform deployment presence, digital distribution is a threat in at least two major ways:

1. It allegedly undercuts physical sales. Which in turn makes a very large part of the console-business obsolete. Along with very large partners in retail and advertisement. Obviously regional pricing, region licensing, and the gnomes dealing with releases locally are feeling the pressure as well (basically because they are too dumb to say: well, this gives you more money for actual localisation and translation, then!).

2. The format itself makes differentiating releases on included content very difficult. If you had any doubt, Ubisoft people feel that they have been supremely clever by not making "artificial" extra-addons a mainstay of Uplay. But that they instead have integrated Uplay into the games themselves.

 

Sony's solution is more.. traditional.. obstinate. Essentially they've simply established on beforehand, when first opening up for the concept of digital licenses, that every sale of any game should be a package of a specific box-sale. So when they sell ps2 games on the excellent cell-based emulator they have for the ps3, the emulator and the iso is packaged in a deployment format. Which then is sold as a box-product. Following essentially the same licensing rules and region rules as boxed releases. DRM systems and anti-piracy efforts in this part of the business is huge. It's an industry on it's own, and it would be a visible crisis if the bottom fell out of that market. 

 

Because each sale must be structured in the same way as a physical release, or else this system collapses. So they maintain the same steps in production - specially the last steps it seems - as a physical release. In fact, you frequently get the option to buy games in the shop that just is a box with a code you put in into Origin or Steam, for example. That's how most publishers imagine "digital".

 

And.. people probably shouldn't go along with that. They're basically cutting the production costs (or, as with Sony - keeping them artificially higher, and insuring that the actual deployment cost reduction is never siphoned off to, for example, development of products). And then charging you a premium on top of that.

 

Personally, though, I wouldn't mind paying a premium. If I actually got a portable license that would entitle me to use the product on disc, backup medium, usb key, from online sources, for download service, for streaming, on different platforms, etc., etc. Then I'd happily pay for it. But what you're paying for now is to insure, forever, that you get as little as possible (with the same artificial restrictions as before), for the highest cost the market can bear. But we will never get anything more than what we have at the moment.

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I would be really suprised if the game would cost more than lets say 40 € on release. DOS did cost 40 € on release so I guess PoE would be more like 35-30. Why less? Well DOS was a new release and certainly a different game than all the other Divinity games before (yes even the RPG ones). However it still was a Divinity game so people at least had a certain knowledge of what to expect from it. Decent roleplaying atmosphere, solid mechanics and last but not least whacky humor (but of course also an eventual buggy release). And that is just for those that did not own a Divinity game before and just did do a quick search for reviews on the other Divinity games before. And than there is of course the already established fanbase that the Divinity universe had.

 

Now while Obsidian as a dev certainly has a fanbase, the new Eternity IP certainly does not have that sofar. So you can't just look up the other games with that IP that have been released before to at least get a clue of what it will be like. And you also do have a hard time drawing any conclusions from the previous games that Obsidian did release as their styles are all very different. From grim and dark to humor galore everything is there somehow. So that is why I think that Obsidian would have a hard time getting just as much for Eternity as DOS did get. That said I would love to see them charge as much as DOS did and get away with it cause I think that PoE is going to be worth it.

"Jet, do you know that there are three things I particularly hate......Kids, animals, and women with attitude. SO CAN YOU TELL ME WHY WE HAVE ALL THREE NEATLY GATHERED ON OUR SHIP!"

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