Wed, Apr 20, 2011 | 08:07 BST
Capps: Dollar apps are “killing” traditional game pricing
Epic Games president Mike Capps has said cheap apps make it much harder for the traditional industry in this “scary” transitional period.
“If there’s anything that’s killing us it’s dollar apps,” Capps told Industry Gamers.
“How do you sell someone a $60 game that’s really worth it? They’re used to 99¢.”
While he commented that it’s an “exciting time” for those finding success in non-traditional paths, Capps said things are cagier now than at any time in Epic’s history.
“We have not been this uncertain about what’s coming next in the games industry since Epic’s been around for 20 years,” he said.
“We’re at such an inflection point. Will there be physical distribution in 10 years or even five? Will anyone care about the next console generation? What’s going on in PC? Can you make money on PC if it’s not a connected game? What’s going on in mobile? Tons of really scary things.”
The veteran developer also said that it has become impossible to predict platform trends.
“It used to be, ‘Well, of course PlayStation 3 will be successful because PS2 was amazingly successful.’ But can you say for sure that you know everyone’s going to jump to the next generation?” he said.
“I sure hope so – I’m going to try to make some great tech that will make everyone want to. But it’s scary.”
Epic unveiled new Unreal Engine tech at GDC, with various representatives commenting that the demo was a benchmark for the next generation to aim for.
Capps’ comments mirror those made by Nintendo president Satoru Iwata at GDC this year, in which he accused bite-sized pricing of eroding gaming software value.