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Friday Soapbox - Game Prices - what is your limit?


MattyP
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I have a completely warped sense of what is a reasonable price to spend on a game. It's rooted in the mentality that I drummed into myself when I was going to GameStation in the early 2000s, buying second-hand Saturn/DC/N64 games for £5 each, and then PS2 games in 4-for-£20 offers. And then my judgement about game prices was further distorted over the years by Steam and XBLA sales.

 

Consequently, the most I have ever spent on a new game is... £30, for Sonic Adventure 2 on launch day 20 years ago. :lol: (The Bank of England website's inflation calculator tells me that's equivalent to £50 today.)

 

 

So I freely admit I'm a Scrooge and my sense of value for money is completely fucked up. Just don't ask me what I think is a reasonable price to spend on a graphics card...

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About 35 quid on PC. 

 

Gamepass is a waste of time for me as I've either played it, am not bothered by it, or will download it play it and then drop it about a week later and play something I've bought. Reminds me of the Spectrum piracy days.

 

Also Gamepass is shite on PC.

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5 hours ago, Isaac said:

Everyone on the forum who isn't a PS5 or Switch gamer just has Game Pass and is drowning in games to play for their subscription, and this whole £70 dilemma seems like it's coming from another planet.

Corrected that for you. 

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4 hours ago, Strafe said:

If it’s a AAA game that’s well reviewed I’ll generally pay it, not least because there are plenty of companies that sell for less than RRP. A £70 game usually translates to £62.85 or less at simply games. Value is relative but I had my money’s worth from the 3 big PS5 releases this year (returnal, r&c, deathloop) that’s for sure.

 

Deathloop of course was a normal price.

 

Which is probably why it's the only PS5 box on my shelf.

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I suppose I'm fairly cheap now.

 

My limit for modern games is whatever the upper limit of a standard Nintendo release is. I'm not on the PS5/Series X bandwagon yet as I've seen nothing to tempt me. I can also wait a year or two for a GotY edition of other games I'm interested in to appear and I've given up buying collector's editions, so money and space saved there.

 

Older, out of print games that are creeping up in price are difficult to call. I've generally given up buying second-hand for any system that has a flash cart or an ODE. It's rare for me to buy an older game these days, given how ridiculous the prices are.

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If I really wanted to get a top of the line game (ie. Physical AAA game or a PC digital deluxe game that comes with a season pass), probably £50. My days of picking up tacky big box deluxe games is behind me.

 

£35-40 for a standard PC game, dependant on discounts (say, the standard price was ~£50). Up to £30 for a substantial indie game or port that I absolutely want and will play at launch.

 

We're talking absolute, top 95th percentile of the games I buy though. I've got enough bullshit to play that I can just wait for it to show up on a subscription service or half price in a sale.

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I’ll pay £50 or so for a Nintendo mario or Zelda 

 

not so much ps5 or Xbox series 

 

I’ll happily wait for a second hand copy on here for most PS5 games and most

y use game pass on the series X 

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17 minutes ago, Isaac said:

 

As someone who mainly plays game pass on PC, this statement is total tosh.

Agree completely... been using my PC as a GamePass machine for a couple of years now.. well since FH4 whenever that came out. Never had any issues with it TBH. Did have an odd quirk once when I was messing about with my hardware swapping drives around etc probably because of the way content is tracked on devices or something.

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34 minutes ago, Isaac said:

 

As someone who mainly plays game pass on PC, this statement is total tosh.

 

 

I've had shit loads of issues over the years. Guess I'm wrong though along with all the other people I've seen complaining about it and it's totally fine. 

 

Thanks for dismissing my issues though. Much appreciated.

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3 minutes ago, El Spatula said:

 

 

 

I've had shit loads of issues over the years. Guess I'm wrong though along with all the other people I've seen complaining about it and it's totally fine. 

 

Thanks for dismissing my issues though. Much appreciated.

 

It had teething problems back when they were migrating from the Windows Store to the dedicated Xbox app in Windows 10.

 

It's been rock-solid for a while now though.

 

You get the occasional issue when a game is first released if the developer hasn't kept the PC game pass version updated to the same extent as the Steam version (The Ascent), but this is also massively improving.

 

But as someone who plays Game Pass games pretty much exclusively on PC pretty much every day with no issues, calling it 'shite' is massively missing the mark.

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3 minutes ago, El Spatula said:

I've had shit loads of issues over the years. Guess I'm wrong though along with all the other people I've seen complaining about it and it's totally fine. 

 

How have you been subscribed to it for years? It literally hasn't been on PC for years, and I remembered you first subscribed to it a few months ago, before that you were going around the forum deliberately lying about it in any thread people mentioned it for a year.

 

(I mention deliberately because you kept pretending it only Microsoft first party games, and when corrected would just go to another thread and do the same thing again)

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£70 is too much for me, but then so was £60 last gen.

 

Unless it’s an absolute 10/10 get-it-now-because-the-story-will-be-spoiled like TLOU2 or FF7R last year, I’m always happy to wait for the price to come down (which doesn’t take long, unless it’s Nintendo)
 

I normally have way too much to play just from PS+ or PSN/eshop sales. Bit intimidated adding gamepass to the mix later this year tbh!

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Back in 1993 (there it is!) I did pay £65 for SF2turbo on snes. Nowadays I only get my series a games in sales with ms reward points. It seems the older I get, the cheaper I get. 
 

That said I had a few moments when I thought £80 for the Metroid special edition was too much but I bought it at that in the end. 
 

I think for the right game the limit is going to be much higher but in general I fell we’re getting a lot more for less money. Win!

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I don't buy many games day 1 anymore and look out for bargains when I do (picked up Metroid Dread for £26.99 - Currys clearly messed up their pricing - good on them for honouring it).

 

I am however happy to double or triple dip if the game is good enough. I own Slay the Spire on PC, Switch and IOS, and paid full price each time - I got my money's worth and then some!

 

I'm also still a bit of a sucker for importing - paid well over the odds for Darius Cozmic Collection on Switch (and have my eye on the Taito EGRET II Mini). Old habits die hard I guess.

 

But somehow £70 for a PS5 game just doesn't sit right. I wasn't able to get hold of a PS5 at launch and it has dampened my enthusiasm for sure.

 

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£30 as an absolute maximum for digital; £40 for AAA physical; up to £100 for physical releases of smaller studios' titles with accompanying nice, pointless knick-knacks.

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5 hours ago, RubberJohnny said:

 

How have you been subscribed to it for years? It literally hasn't been on PC for years, and I remembered you first subscribed to it a few months ago, before that you were going around the forum deliberately lying about it in any thread people mentioned it for a year.

 

(I mention deliberately because you kept pretending it only Microsoft first party games, and when corrected would just go to another thread and do the same thing again)


Technically the Gamepass PC launch in Beta was June 2019 so we are talking years now (albeit just over 2).

 

I’ve had no real issues with it either but there are multitude reports of issues all over the internet of problems on different builds (the resetera thread/poll on the matter record just under 50% of respondents having problems).

 

Gamepass on PC is a great service but I think there’s no denying it really doesn’t work very well on everyone’s system

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One bit of faulty logic in this thread, the line "Last of us 2 was worth £70 because I played it for a year and put 500 hours into it.".

 

By that logic, Daytona USA is worth a thousand quid.  

 

Just because you played a game for hours and hours, doesn't justify an increase the shelf price. Imagine your favourite band bringing out an album and asking £100 for it because it has great songs. 

 

Goods are priced at what the market will bear.  Games are stupidly overpriced.  If James Cameron can make Titanic and sell it on a DVD for a tenner then there's no reason at all that a game should cost anywhere near £70.  

 

The closest I've been to buying a new game recently was when I got Cruisin' Blast for £30 on switch.  That was a tenner overpriced but I enjoyed it for one night and I justified not waiting for a price drop because of not going on holiday for 2 years. But there's absolutely no justification whatsoever for a PS5 game to cost more than a PS4 game.  £70 takes the piss, and I'd rather have 7 months of Gamepass for that.

 

 

 

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*Shakes Cane*

I remember back in my day having to pay £65 for an import version of some SNES games....AND games cost 40-50 quid anyway!!  And we did it because we were TRUE gamers, not like you youngsters......

 

Obviously, I'm joking, and this isnt to say back then was like it is now or worse or something (though apparently £65 from then is worth about £130 now....yikes).  Games nowadays certainly can seem more like a rip off with sketchy pricing models that incentivise pre-orders/"deluxe" editions, and in game purchases or lootboxes.  Plus value is relative - back then, 40 quid for Mario seemed more than reasonable.

 

Now....well, theres not many games I'd pay full price of £60 for.  Even less I'd pay upwards of  £90 for the bells and whistles version.  But at the same time, I dread to think how much I've spent on WoW over the 15 years + I've played it.  Easily a grand though.

31 minutes ago, dumpster said:

Goods are priced at what the market will bear.  Games are stupidly overpriced.  If James Cameron can make Titanic and sell it on a DVD for a tenner then there's no reason at all that a game should cost anywhere near £70.  

This seems like a weird thing to compare.  Titanic wasnt just dumped onto DVD for a tenner.  It had a run in cinema where  it sold in the hundreds of millions of tickets.  It actually sold more on VHS than DVD at the time, where it sold as many copies in the US alone as GTA IV.  It also wouldnt have been a tenner on release.  Im not saying games arent overpriced at the moment (a lot are for sure) but I'm pretty sure James Camerons marketing plan involved a bit more than "right, thats done - whack it on DVD for a tenner now mate, yeah that'll get us the £200 million this film cost back"

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1 hour ago, dumpster said:

One bit of faulty logic in this thread, the line "Last of us 2 was worth £70 because I played it for a year and put 500 hours into it.".

 

By that logic, Daytona USA is worth a thousand quid.  


It’s just a subjective thing which I don’t think is intended to be taken too seriously. :) I remember when P4G was reduced to £8.99 (as a regular price on PSN, not a special discount) and people were still waiting for it to be on PS+. I countered by saying that it’s already a bargain at £35, but in all seriousness I know that it’s a risky purchase if those kind of games do nothing for you.

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Another "I just have Game Pass" here. I actually find it hard to spend out in what is actually my main / only hobby, for some reason. Not helped by paying £80 (about half of which was covered by Rewards points) for the "Ultimate" edition of Mortal Kombat, only to discover that it didn't include two thirds of the dlc characters or the £35 expression. Felt burned to the point where I'm not willing to spend much on anything any more. 

 

TL/DR: about £40

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As I was typing the Titanic analogy I knew I'd get picked up on it. It's not a fair comparison I'll admit.  But the video games industry has matured - it's mainstream now, and most houses have a games console under the telly. Distribution is cheaper than ever, no boxes, no manuals, no cartridges to manufacture.  Development is more straightforward with Unity, Unreal etc providing the engines for you. 

 

But the overall point is that development costs do not relate to product price.  Harry Potter was written by an unemployed woman in a Scottish cafe, the sequels were written by a millionaire, but the books were the same price because "that's what books cost".  It costs the same price to manufacture a dvd and a Blu-ray of the same movie but the Bluray will carry a £3 premium, because, better. We all saw DVD launch with movies at £25 but it didn't last because movies are supposed to be £10-£15. 

 

Titanic cost 100 million to make, involved hundreds of creators.  But it still got released at the cinema for a £5 ticket price, it came out on DVD and Blu Ray, etc etc.  

 

Products get priced at what the market will stand.  If McDonalds launched a Five Guys style burger at five guys prices they'd sell none because that's not what McDonalds burgers cost.  If Steven King's new book is as ludicrously long as The Stand was, it wouldnt cost twice the price of his other books.

 

Games used to be £40 to £50 in plastic boxes, on expensive cartridges, manufactured in the far East, shipped to the UK, sold to shops via distribution companies and then on to you for a 30% margin.  

 

Today you get games sent directly to your console from Sony, no middle men, barely any cost of manufacture or distribution, no packaging.  And the marketplace is bigger than ever.  And the games have dlc, season passes, loot boxes and so on.   

 

There's just no reason at all for a game to cost £70 other than they think they can get away with it.  Games could be a tenner.  Hell, Fortnight is free and look how much money it makes.

 

 

 

 

 

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Max I will pay is 30 quid. If I could be guaranteed that it's the full version and there won't be extra dlc to burn me further down the line then I would increase that to 45. Having said that I don't remember the last time I spent over 35 quid on a game. I guess we would have to go back to the Xbox 360 days. 

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£35 physical (it would be lower if not for limited releases and Nintendo)

 

£20 digital - generally do not buy digital if a physical version exists unless the difference in price is really significant

 

Fully expect next-gen price points to be temporary - it's not mass market in the slightest. As ever, early adopters pay the price.

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