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Mr Tony

Activision announces record results. Fires 800 people

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18 hours ago, mushashi said:

otherwise he'd probably be a Billionaire and could take a PR friendly pay cut, like some other CEOs.

 

I love the idea that a man who just paid himself 30 million dollars can’t take a pay cut because he’s not a billionaire. 

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4 hours ago, BabelRich said:

 

I love the idea that a man who just paid himself 30 million dollars can’t take a pay cut because he’s not a billionaire. 

 

CEOs of public corporations don't usually decide their own pay, he ain't Gabe Newell. There is usually a committee that decides what to pay the executive branch.

 

People are essentially bitching that the executive class has decoupled their pay structure from that of their employees, much like modern day sports people in cash rich sports are getting paid obscene amounts compared to how they were in the past. It's all true, but it isn't something specific to publicly traded games publishers, it's a failure of the current economic system, or a regression to the dim past, where the landed class had disproportionate wealth compared to nearly everybody else.

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https://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/2019-02-25-activisions-bobby-kotick-and-eas-andrew-wilson-among-most-overpaid-ceos-in-us

 

Quote

A new report shows that the heads of Activision Blizzard and Electronic Arts are among the United States' most overpaid CEOs.

As You Sow, a non-profit foundation whose mission is to promote corporate social responsibility, carries out an annual analysis into how much chief execs are paid and calculate how many are arguably overpaid.

This is estimated by taking into account their salary, the ratio between this and the average worker at their firm, plus factors like shareholder votes against the CEO's pay package and total shareholder return.

Using this methodology, Activision's Bobby Kotick is the most overpaid CEO in the US games industry. His salary was reported as $28,698,375 -- 306 times more than the average Activision staff member. With 92% of shareholder votes against this package, As You Sow believes this to be an excess payment of $12,835,277.

Meanwhile, EA CEO Andrew Wilson was estimated to be paid an excess of $19,673,861, with his salary at $35,728,764. There were 97% of shareholders votes against this package, and it stands at 371 times more than the average EA employee's pay packet.

For comparison, the average CEO to worker ratio at S&P 500 companies, the largest 500 companies in the US, is 142:1.

Kotick and Wilson stand alongside overpaid CEOs from Disney, Netflix, Mattel, 20th Century Fox, McDonald's and more, ranked at No.45 and No.98 repsectively. You can find more details in the full report.

The news follows significant layoffs at both exec's companies. Last week, it was revealed EA was laying off much of its Australian studio FireMonkeys. Meanwhile, Activision Blizzard announced it was making around 800 people redundant after its financial results -- despite enjoying a record year.

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His salary was reported as $28,698,375 -- 306 times more than the average Activision staff member. 

I'm surprised the ratio isn't higher. Does the average Activision staff member earn $93k a year?

 

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On 13/02/2019 at 16:27, rafaqat said:

 

Well.....you don't really do you. 

 

It's not the developers at From's fault that their work has had Activision's filthy claws stuck in it. 

 

On 13/02/2019 at 16:45, Kevvy Metal said:

 

Worth noting that Sekiro originally started life as a Tenchu project, before changing the direction to a new IP. 

That probably explains the Activision team up. 

 

Have we had any actual confirmation of this? I thought it was just speculation. 

 

On 13/02/2019 at 18:43, Cyhwuhx said:

Add to that the fixed priced of normal games release for about thirty years and all of this is pretty much par for the course. 

 

I don’t like it, but I sure as hell understand it. 

We are simply with too few. 

 

This is such, utter bullshit. The games industry has been consistently growing for years and games increase in price constantly. Not only does a modern COD game cost me £60 (which is twice what I was paying for new PS1 games 15 years ago), it comes with a ridiculous array of payment options, including special editions that cost twice as much, season passes that are as much as the game again, loot boxes and whatever other shit is in there. Which is why they're achieving record profits. 

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New PS1 games 15 years ago?  They were only £30 quid for a new game at the time? Perhaps you should do a little maths and research before complaining about others' "utter bullshit."

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Alright, eighteen years ago. And yes, when the PS1 was very popular the RRP of new releases was £30, that's how much I paid for both Driver and Resi 3 on release.

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PS1 was launched in 1994. I make that 25 years. New PS1 games were commonly £40 at launch. I think N64 games might have been £10-20 more.

 

That £40 then was the equivalent of £75 in 2017, and presumably a bit more now. Sekiro is available for pre-order at Amazon for £50. 

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I do think it's really cute that this folder discovered capitalism, just in the last few weeks, because a man who cosplays as an incel told you to be upset about it, but some kind of semblance of reality is probably best.

 

Even if the PS1 games were £30 at launch, they're still basically, at worst, the same as now.

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12 minutes ago, Uncle Mike said:

I do think it's really cute that this folder discovered covered capitalism, just in the least few weeks, because a man who cosplays as an incel told you to be upset about it, but some kind of semblance of reality is probably best.

 

Even if the PS1 games were £30 at launch, they're still basically, at worst, the same as now.

Not only that, but if you take into account the cost to make in 1997 vs today, they are even better value.

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15 minutes ago, Uncle Mike said:

I do think it's really cute that this folder discovered capitalism, just in the least few weeks, because a man who cosplays as an incel told you to be upset about it, but some kind of semblance of reality is probably best.

 

Even if the PS1 games were £30 at launch, they're still basically, at worst, the same as now.

 

They weren't £30 when at launch.  Around the end of 1998 new titles went to £30, and that was retailer-led, not Sony-inspired.  Sales trebled, so they basically didn't go up again.

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Whatever the price of games in the 90s, either to buy or manufacture (which would have been the same where optical media is concerned) they weren't crammed full of loot boxes or DLC or whatever other versions of monetisation we have today.

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Ah, the old "Nintendo once charged £60 for Street Fighter, that's the same as new games routinely bring £60 now". And what a shock that Uncle Mike's contribution is to suggest that the world would be better if only people were as smart as him.

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Just now, Broker said:

Ah, the old "Nintendo once charged £60 for Street Fighter, that's the same as new games routinely bring £60 now". 

 

I mean, that literally wasn't my point. My point was that PS1 games cost, relative to inflation, more than PS4 games today. And some of them significantly more.

 

Activision may well be a shitty company, I don't really know. From a quick Google, it looks like it made 3% profit in 2001, and 3% profit in 2017.

 

What you are arguing for when you rail against "monetisation" full stop is a higher sticker price. Fair enough if you think some forms of that monetisation is shady, go ahead. But it's naive to think that companies don't want (arguably, need) to make a profit. 

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1 minute ago, Uncle Mike said:

 

Likewise for what? Everything I've put in the last few posts is readily checkable via Google.

Why would they have been more expensive to produce then than now given that it's still a box with a disc? 

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It's not my claim, so I don't see why I have to back it up, but if you think they didn't get cheaper between their invention and their now end-of-life status, we're really going to have to start this business fundamentals class at a much earlier stage than I thought.

 

Not that I suspect manufacture is a big element of the cost, really. I assume it's more the cost of developers, artists, marketing etc.

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Regardless whether you made the claim initially you decided to back it up and argue the point without any proof whilst expecting me to provide the same. Even if they did cost more it wouldn't have been substantially so given it's the same materials and manufacturing processes (broadly speaking).

 

This is all moving away from the point anyway.

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29 minutes ago, Broker said:

Ah, the old "Nintendo once charged £60 for Street Fighter, that's the same as new games routinely bring £60 now". And what a shock that Uncle Mike's contribution is to suggest that the world would be better if only people were as smart as him.

 

Are many games released at £60 now?  Even in Game, which is hardly a beacon of low prices, the most I can remember sering for a long time is £54.99, and that is very much the exception rather than the rule, which is more like £49.99.  If we are discussing standard editions, that is - ultimate / VIP / collectors' editions muddy the water somewhat.

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23 minutes ago, Stanley said:

Regardless whether you made the claim initially you decided to back it up and argue the point without any proof whilst expecting me to provide the same. 

 

I merely asked you to provide some evidence for your point. You evidently can't, (and in fairness to you, it's not easily Googleable) and that's fine. But it doesn't mean you win and we just assume you're right by default.

 

There's a bunch of things that could have impacted how much it costs an Activision to manufacture and distribute a physical game. For one, they've gone from CD to DVD to Blu-ray. It's likely the cost is greater for each. It seems reasonable that 1994-2000 was likely "peak CD" to a certain extent, and maybe per-unit costs were cheaper as a result. I have it in my memory that, on PS1 at least, publishers were forced to use Sony's own disc-pressing plant (which might have come with an uncompetitive price.)

 

So who knows? Not you, not me. I'd be unsurprised at any result for it. I just asked you to back up your claim.

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We've been round this before.

 

If you take inflation into account  (which, well, why wouldn't you) we have a better situation going on with the price of games than , basically, ever before. Doubly so when you take into account the average quality and amount spent on delivering the product.

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£50-£60 seems to be the norm for most new releases these days. You'll pick them up cheaper of course from online retailers and the like, but that's the RRP, and obviously what you'll pay digitally.

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1 minute ago, Uncle Mike said:

 

I merely asked you to provide some evidence for your point. You evidently can't, (and in fairness to you, it's not easily Googleable) and that's fine. But it doesn't mean you win and we just assume you're right by default.

Yet you're somehow exempt from providing any proof yourself. I don't think I was making any great claims, certainly not worth arguing over to this degree.

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For me the issue isn’t the price of games. It’s where the profits are going. This thread was started because Activision had a record year and laid of 800 people but still made sure it paid its execs frankly disgusting salaries and also made sure that one of them got a ludicrous bonus beforehand.

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4 minutes ago, PeteBrant said:

We've been round this before.

 

If you take inflation into account  (which, well, why wouldn't you) we have a better situation going on with the price of games than , basically, ever before. Doubly so when you take into account the average quality and amount spent on delivering the product.

I actually agree especially when you take Game Pass, Games with Gold and PS Plus into account. The problem I see with publishers like EA, Activision and to a lesser extent Ubisoft is that the price of the game is never really the price of the game. Take Destiny 2 for example, yeah the base game was 40 or 50 quid but unless you carry on paying for the DLC packs you'll miss out on the full experience in a game which is designed and built around continuous long play. 

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