Codies co-founder predicts extinction for “dinosaur” physical media

Thursday, 5th July 2012 00:59 GMT By Brenna Hillier

Retail’s reliance on physical media could kill next-generation consoles, Codemasters co-founder David Darling has warned.

Darling is the CEO of social developer Kwalee, and posted a lengthy blog post on its website in which he argued that retail partnerships put platform holders at risk of becoming irrelevant.

“If the next generation consoles have media drives like DVD to keep distributors and retailers happy so they can sell physical product this will make the machines uncompetitive. They will not be able to compete on price,” he said.

“The retailers will say to Sony and Microsoft ‘you can’t sell game X at retail for $60 and then sell it in your App Store for $2.’ However, console-makers will need to sell games for $2 or else they will not be competitive with Apple. Nintendo 3DS and Sony Vita are not currently competitive with iPhone and Android game prices.”

The industry veteran cited declining physical sales and rising profitability in the digital sphere to back up his case.

“Consoles have become like dinosaurs heading for extinction as their natural retail habitat begins to change,” he said.

“Sony and Microsoft cannot let the retailers dictate game prices going forwards if they want to break free from the current over-priced model. Their next consoles, PlayStation 4 and Xbox 720 need to be digital only, or they will fail.”

The blog also contains a pretty ace illustration of an iPhone asteroid taking down console dinosaurs. The Wii is a triceratops. Click the link above to admire it.

Thanks, CVG.



  1. ItsFade

    There are room for both retail and digital games. Console gaming and handheld/smartphone gaming are two very different markets. It goes without saying that they will not sell $60 games for $2 digitally and vice versa on XBL/PSN but there will most likely be plenty cheap games as well as more expensive games that will be available digitally and via retail.

    The stuff that is at retail are generally big budget games from publishers and not cheap indie games which you generally see on digital platforms like Steam, Android, iPhone App Store etc.

    For the consoles to go fully digital next generation is unlikely to say the least. It’s very different downloading a 50 MB Phone game and a 15 GB retail game for a lot of people. Retail will most likely phase out naturally once fiber optics become the standard in most households and people have the access and speeds to download huge games without any issues.

    #1 2 years ago
  2. TheBlackHole

    What a surprise – another digital company bitching about console.

    It’s not going anywhere soon darling, get over it.

    #2 2 years ago

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