When $60 Isn't Enough

This article pretty sum up what I was feeling, how about you?

[quote]

Until recently, I was just fine with the digital era of gaming. I didn't mind downloadable content that shipped on the disc but needed to be purchased separately. I didn't mind unlocking online multiplayer modes with one-time use codes from new games or a $10 online pass. And despite some misgivings, I didn't even mind microtransactions or retailer-exclusive preorder incentives when they were done right.

 

But the rise of premium subscription services like Call of Duty: Elite and Electronic Arts' Season Ticket is a fee too far for me. My tolerance for incremental revenue streams has died a death of a thousand cuts, and I've lost all taste for publishers' short-sighted, exploitive, and (in the case of free-to-play games) downright predatory tactics in the marketplace.

 

 

 

In most of these cases, publishers will tell us that the game on the disc is every bit as good as it ever was, and that gamers are getting everything they're accustomed to--a full-featured product with sufficient bells and whistles to justify a $60 price tag. And to take their side for a moment, each one of these approaches is defensible.

After all, the difference between DLC on the disc or not is a question of semantics: Should transferring MB of data to access the content instead of KB really make a big difference to the consumer? As for combating used game sales, why shouldn't publishers take issue with the practice? These companies spend millions making and marketing a game to convince people to go to their local GameStops to buy the thing, only to have the retailer sell them a used copy from which the people who made the game won't see a dime. Those sales add up pretty quickly, given that GameStop annually rakes in $2 billion in used game sales, an amount roughly 13 percent the size of the US retail gaming market last year.

 

Even microtransactions and preorder incentives have had their place. Who could argue with Rock Band's a la carte approach that gave gamers access to thousands of extra songs, tailoring the game to their exact musical tastes? And I'll be the first to admit I preordered Rogue Squadron III: Rebel Strike just for the preorder disc that featured the old Star Wars arcade game.

 

But when taken together, every one of these incremental revenue streams that publishers so desperately crave might leave a bitter taste in a gamer's mouth. While the $60 we once spent for new retail games is arguably buying just as much, it certainly isn't buying any more than it did before. In fact, that same $60 is now undeniably buying a second-class game experience.

 

 

 

If you don't buy the collector's edition with the extra content, the map packs, and the subscription service with the whiz-bang Web-based tools, you're only getting a fraction of the total game experience. And if that fraction doesn't meet your fancy and you trade the game in, you're getting less value in return because GameStop knows it's getting a disc with crippled online features. As a result, even consumers who always buy new games at full price are being punished by this scheme.

Publishers can say the core product doesn't suffer as a result of these initiatives, but the problem is one of perception. I perceive that my $60 is no longer enough for them. I perceive that their focus is shifting from making a game to making a business model. I perceive that the more desperate they become for my money, the more cynical, manipulative, and dehumanizing their approach to getting it will become. I can't even convince myself that I am a valued customer any longer; I am simply a potential revenue stream with an incidental pulse.

 

But the more examples I see of downright disrespectful cash grabs from publishers, the less common it becomes for my full-price purchase to get me a complete, cohesive gaming experience and the more I'll appreciate (and happily shell out for) the games that buck that trend: the Vanquishes, the Children of Eden, and the Shadows of the Damned.

 

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Discussion Info


Last updated July 4, 2018 Views 0 Applies to:

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[quote user="ChickinOnaChain"]

I really hate it when a game is a few weeks old and they release some $10 DLC for it.  I think, "Why couldn't they have put that in the game to begin with?" 

[/quote]

Same here. I also hate when a game is released unfinished and requires lots of updates. I hate those "update the game before you can play it".

I have since vote with my wallet and avoided EA games that required you to pay to play online (Eg NFS:HP, FN:Champion, etc)

 

[quote user="OG Pooh"]

 

 

 

There's a difference between running a business & raping customers.

[/quote]Fact of the day.

 

First, I haven't read every post, so this may have been mentioned but I really hate it when a game is a few weeks old and they release some $10 DLC for it.  I think, "Why couldn't they have put that in the game to begin with?" 

[quote user="Im n d social"]

Can anyone list examples?  Besides call of duty and capcom games?  And not pre order dlc as that is to get people to duh pre order (its not like the gear is good anyway)...or is this just random generalizations?

[/quote]

Any game that has ever released a couple maps and charged 10 bucks or so.

mortal kombat making you pay for retro costumes and extra characters

fable charging for side quests.

Forza charging for courses and cars

mass effects DLC

 

 

Can anyone list examples?  Besides call of duty and capcom games?  And not pre order dlc as that is to get people to duh pre order (its not like the gear is good anyway)...or is this just random generalizations?

Right, I remember when you bought a game and you got the whole thing. Gamers this generation seem more than happy to be given less for more.

Remember when game addons were free, unless it was a big expansion? Free maps, free cars, and so on. Extra characters and costumes were unlocked by beating hard mode or discovering a secret in the game not bought online.

It seems every new scheme developers come up with is widely accepted and loved by gamers.

[quote user="Manhandler"]

[quote user="Domuhnic"]

... and THAT is why gaming is a luxury, not a necessity.

[/quote]

Bingo. I was under the impression that these people were trying to run a business...not a charity. Gaming is an expensive hobby. If you can't afford it or are complaining about costs, then go do something else...like knit sweaters or something.

[/quote]

 

There's a difference between running a business & raping customers. Developers routinely release incomplete games, then charge players to unlock the full experience. When you buy a game, that should be it... Done deal. The problem is that this is a very slippery slope we're now on. It used to be, when you bought a game, that was it... You were done paying for it. With the advent of add-ons, it is not all that rare to end up paying well over $100 for a complete game that, in all reality is what should have been released in the first place. People (like you) don't mind that, so now EA is charging for online passes, that "allow" their customers to actually play the game they've purchased. The audacity some consumers have to think they can actually use the product they've paid for. What nerve. Of course, people like you don't mind this either. So what will be next? Whatever it may be, you will have less than zero right to complain, because you happily asked for it. It's not a question of it being expensive... It's whether or not you enjoy taking it in the...

 

Apparently, you do.

[quote user="ThugLife67889"]

[quote user="Manhandler"]

[quote user="Domuhnic"]

... and THAT is why gaming is a luxury, not a necessity.

[/quote]

Bingo. I was under the impression that these people were trying to run a business...not a charity. Gaming is an expensive hobby. If you can't afford it or are complaining about costs, then go do something else...like knit sweaters or something.

[/quote]

That's why i buy used or borrow from friends

[/quote]So not true. I mean, "expensive" is a relative term, different to others... however you can buy a used hunk-o-junk current-gen console from a local pawn shop for a one-time only fee of about a $50. Bam. You got your console. And if you paid for a $22 monthly 2-Game Plan with GameFly, you can get a steady stream of games from now until the end of time. Someone like that plays far more games than most gamers, as most gamers today are casuals that either don't play very often or have any variety. It depends how smart you are bout it too. I spend less money on average buying and renting full retail games (105 owned, along with my 2-game plan from GF) than I do purchasing XBLA games and DLC for the games I already have.

[quote user="Manhandler"]

[quote user="Domuhnic"]

... and THAT is why gaming is a luxury, not a necessity.

[/quote]

Bingo. I was under the impression that these people were trying to run a business...not a charity. Gaming is an expensive hobby. If you can't afford it or are complaining about costs, then go do something else...like knit sweaters or something.

[/quote]

That's why i buy used or borrow from friends

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