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GameStop: next-gen console sales will be “diminished” if used games are restricted

Thursday, 7th February 2013 20:35 GMT By Stephany Nunneley

GameStop has said consumers’ “desire to purchase” consoles will be “significantly diminished” if manufacturer were to block the ability to play used games.

Speaking with Bloomberg, the chain’s VP of public and investor relations, Matt Hodges, said sales of new tech would also be diminished should the machines “limit portability, or not play new physical games,” we assume he is referring to the “cloud-only” rumors for next-gen with part of his statement.

Yesterday, GameStop share prices fell 6% over the course of the day following a report claiming the next-gen Xbox would tether purchased games to individual consoles, as way to circumvent used game sales.

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44 Comments

  1. DuckNation

    Hell yes they will

    #1 1 year ago
  2. theevilaires

    somebody is getting scared ;)…..

    SONY and Microsoft should chime back and say: Gamestop’s “profits” will be diminished if used games are restricted.

    #2 1 year ago
  3. Francis O

    I agree, you can’t restrict people from selling a game THEY own to a store or to someone else. I will not be purchasing a PS4 or Xbox 720 if they do so. I got a nice PC.

    #3 1 year ago
  4. Gnosis

    @2: lol, that’s what I thought, too. Well, their stock dropped by 6% because of a mere rumor. Kinda expected a statement like this.

    #4 1 year ago
  5. Seraphemz

    I doubt that this is true… no way they restrict games. They will lose a ton of business…

    then again, if both Sony AND M$ do it… people will have to deal with it.

    #5 1 year ago
  6. SplatteredHouse

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yPkr1XQFNJA <—Gamestop, earlier today.

    #6 1 year ago
  7. theevilaires

    @3 you own the physical copy of the disc not the software on it. You can sell the disc to as many people you want but its in the copyright holder power to limit the use of it to who it was intended for. Which would be the first purchaser of the content.

    As much as I hope things don’t go down hill too much is at stake with developers dropping like flies. Sooner or later its going to be play COD all year around until SONY,Nintendo,and Microsoft release their 1st party titles or nothing.

    #7 1 year ago
  8. BULArmy

    @3The IP laws actually state that the only thing you own is the case, DVD and manual. You have no property whatsoever on what is on the disk.

    This thing, again is the comunity being furious about something they don’t like, but 90% of it doing the opposite of what they said when the time for action comes. The amount of people that will boycot Sony or MS, because they will kill off second game sales, is in my view a tiny fraction of the potential custommers.

    #8 1 year ago
  9. JimFear-666

    sound like someone who’s trying to do some damage control.

    #9 1 year ago
  10. salarta

    Well of course Gamestop’s profits will be diminished, but sales of the hardware will be diminished greatly too. Many people have absolutely no interest or desire to buy games new, and I can guarantee that in the majority of cases, preventing used sales will result in publishers keeping the price of a game at what it is on release for longer because they will figure that consumers “have” to buy with their price or not at all.

    This also flies in the face of what largely made PS2 last as long as it has. Buy the console for its new cheaper price, buy used games for a more affordable price, Sony continues to make at least some money while the PS3 isn’t being the success they thought it would be. Once there are no more used games, and people will have to pay at or near full price for a game that got released half a decade ago, there will be a big reduction in sales from casuals. Why spend $400-500 on a console and then $50-60 for each game when you can just buy a decent PC that you’ll have other uses for and buy the games digitally (if you HAVE to lock it to only one person like that) for much, much cheaper through services like Steam? Suddenly, Sony and Microsoft have consoles that are overly expensive in a time when people are hurting financially, while the PC gives them the most value for their money.

    So really, if Sony and Microsoft want to ensure lower sales for everyone, then they should definitely forge ahead. All this will do is give publishers a false sense of security that “used games” aren’t somehow cutting into their sales, while those very sales decline.

    Which, of course, they’ll blame on something else like “console volatility” because it’s easier to pin the blame on anything that isn’t themselves.

    #10 1 year ago
  11. theevilaires

    I’m afraid BULArmy is right guys. We all know 90% of you will buckle and the rest of you will flock to PC. Its happening guys get over it. The push for all digital consoles start with the next I’m afraid :(

    Just be lucky there’s a special technique among some brilliant geeks called hacking ;)

    #11 1 year ago
  12. DSB

    Consoles: Joining the 21st century only a decade after it arrived :P

    Of course Gamestop are going to come out against it. Their whole business is built around outdated technology.

    Hopefully consoles will start to want to compete on price a bit instead of just shaking people down because they can, but then I don’t see why they wouldn’t.

    It costs a lot less to beam someone a videogame through outer space than it does to print a dvd and then hire a truck to drive it all the way over to Gamestop, who will still take a profit after the fact.

    #12 1 year ago
  13. salarta

    @12: Hoping that the console makers and the game publishers will compete on price and not shake people down because they can is optimistic. Publishers have made it very clear through what they’ve tried to pull with DLC that they’ll attempt any price-gouging they can. Not having to compete value-wise with used sales will just make them think they can keep their prices high for longer, and I’m guessing will also make many of them think they can get away with withholding more content from the initial release to be added in later as DLC. They no longer have to worry about providing enough value and promise to get people to buy the game new instead of used, they only have to worry about providing just enough value to get people to want to buy it at all.

    #13 1 year ago
  14. Gheritt White

    ‘Cos, y’know… God forbid devs actually got paid.

    Just sayin’.

    #14 1 year ago
  15. Francis O

    So if I want to play a game on a friends console I cant because its locked to my system? Bullshit…. Its my game, I own it.

    #15 1 year ago
  16. Mineral4r7s

    #14 yeah. why dont you go buy a car which requires a telephone call to your manufacturer to authentificate that you are the driver? oh you forgot your phonr or even lost it? bad luck your car is forced to that phone. so you better go and buy a new car. sounds legit right? i mean factory workers actually got paid. just sayin.

    #16 1 year ago
  17. DSB

    @13 It’s give and take. On one hand you have a bunch of trashy DLC that doesn’t cost a lot to make, but sells for a premium.

    On the other hand, at least on the PC, you have games that are actually sold at a loss in some instances as a result of fierce competition.

    There’s no way publishers would allow that if it wasn’t because they were milking them after the fact.

    It’s annoying from an enthusiasts point of view, but I’m not sure it isn’t a worthwhile price to pay for 15-20 dollar AAA games (which tend to be a reality within 3-6 months of any launch).

    Of course that’s the PC. I think the interesting thing to see is how the console manufacturers will transfer the disc license shakedown into an online service shakedown. It could be just as bad, or it could mean progress.

    #17 1 year ago
  18. salarta

    @14: Devs getting paid is an entirely separate issue from the worthiness of used game sales. Do you see the MPAA crying about used DVD and Blu-ray sales, or at least doing so loud and often enough that anybody notices? Do you see film companies regularly saying “If only the used DVD market wasn’t around, I’d be getting millions more and my company could keep making movies.”

    “Used game sales” is just another of several excuses that ignorant CEOs make for themselves for why their money-grubbing tactics and stupid decisions don’t result in their games printing money for them. How many do we have now? Used game sales? Pirating? The latest one was “console volatility,” which is likely to be harped on once Sony and Microsoft giving into the publishers’ demands results in fewer sales instead of more. The disparity between sales in PCs and mobiles/tablets compared to consoles is likely to cause these companies to say consoles are a dead zone. The publishers these past few years have shown that even if they make millions in sales on a game, they will remain disappointed due to unrealistically high expectations.

    @17: Good points. I think the actual winners of this whole debacle are going to be companies that are focused on the PC and mobile devices such as Steam, not Sony, Microsoft or any of the video game publishers that want this so bad. People already have a computer or an iphone, that technology already serves other purposes such as web browsing, it’s ultimately cheaper and easier to not buy the $400-500 piece of equipment that’s forcing you to pay $50-60 for a new game that can only be activated and played on one console and instead get a much better PC. The only benefit consoles have over PCs at that point is that it’s a little more trouble to get your PC set up for gaming, but the majority of people who buy consoles are the same people that can figure out how to do it or know other people that do.

    #18 1 year ago
  19. JB

    @7 That`s simply untrue…

    “@3 you own the physical copy of the disc not the software on it. You can sell the disc to as many people you want but its in the copyright holder power to limit the use of it to who it was intended for. Which would be the first purchaser of the content.”

    http://www.computerworld.com/s/article/9228762/EU_court_rules_resale_of_used_software_licenses_is_legal_even_online

    “IDG News Service – Europe’s highest court ruled on Tuesday that the trading of “used” software licenses is legal and that the author of such software cannot oppose any resale.

    The exclusive right of distribution of a copy of a computer program covered by such a licence is exhausted on its first sale, said the European Court of Justice (ECJ). This applies to downloaded software as well as that bought on CD or DVD. This ruling sets a precedent for trading of used software licenses throughout the European Union and could potentially impact ebooks and computer games as well.”

    http://www.develop-online.net/news/43141/German-organization-takes-Valve-to-court

    Now Cinema Blend reports it has heard from the VZBV’s Eva Hoffschulte, who says the organization has filed a complaint against Valve in the Berlin District Court.
    The VZBV says it is willing to take the case all the way to the Supreme Court.
    Valve modified its EULA on Jan 31, but the agency expects this is too little, too late.
    Any ruling will be crucial to the future of digital distribution, which has been a lifesaver for developers worried by the loss of profits due to the resale of physical copies of used games.

    #19 1 year ago
  20. DSB

    @19 They may well have a case when it comes to forcing the acceptance of new terms of service. I believe Sony took a bit of shit for that too.

    When it comes to “resale”, you never actually own the games you buy access to on Steam, so it stands to reason that you can’t exactly resell them either. They’re a service delivered, not property.

    To quote the subscriber agreement:

    The Software is licensed, not sold. Your license confers no title or ownership in the Software. To make use of the Software, you must have a Steam Account and you may be required to be running the Steam client and maintaining a connection to the Internet.”

    #20 1 year ago
  21. Gheritt White

    All I’m saying is if you want get better and better looking and playing vidjagaemz with more fresh and funky stuff added every year – and this is before you even start talking about reaching the quality bar – when you want those big AAA hollywood blockbuster style experiences that we all still do, as much as we love Trials and Fez and Journey and even The Walking Dead blah blah blah…

    BUT

    You only want to carry on spending the exact same amount for a game?

    How the fuck do you think people can carry on affording to make more expensive games if they don’t recoup the money somehow? So many games struggle to break even, even with current budgets – what’s gonna happen when budgets go up?

    PS2 era games cost about US$10 – 15 odd million to make, perhaps more if you went nuts. X360 and PS3 games cost… around the US$25 – 30M, but budgets can shoot beyond US$40M for big and famous projects. Rumour has it GTAIV stretched to US$100M all told, but who really knows.

    So, next-gen, with all its fancy whiz-bang GFX and new tech blah blah blah involved, you’re now starting at – realistically IMHO taking delays and false starts into account – US$40M. Some might say that’s a little high, but I think they’re kidding themselves. So, when the next gen IP arms race kicks off again as it inevitably will, I think budgets will hit US$50 – 60M pretty quickly. Of course, this will have a major impact on the players in the field, but consolidation is nothing new.

    However – and here’s the rub – everyone will still only want to pay £40 £50, and woe betide it ever dare approaching £59.99. And mind you, *most* people don’t want to even pay that. They wait until the publisher drops the price or – more often – they skip paying the game’s creators entirely and buy it second hand at a cheaper price, but still heavily marked up by the store from which they bought it.

    So, you tell me, how the hell do you get round this without finding new ways to accrue incidental revenue? From DLC and episodic content to microtransactions and now to this, *that’s* how you pay for next gen entertainment when the cost of goods remains static.

    #21 1 year ago
  22. DSB

    But where is that money actually going Gheritt?

    Engine licenses have never been cheaper, servers have never been cheaper, publishers have never made more on every sale than they do now, essentially reversing the 40/60 margins they made on physical, to 70/30 margins in their favor on digital.

    The world has been good to anyone who wants to make a videogame, so how does the industry continue to eat up its own advantages?

    Maybe they just aren’t good enough at getting the most out of their organizations.

    #22 1 year ago
  23. salarta

    @21: Actually, it was a big deal to a lot of people that game prices bumped up from $50 to $60 on average, but most people accepted it. Primarily because most people understood that game prices hadn’t gone up at all since the 80s, meaning they had to go up again sooner or later. Of course, minimum wage hasn’t either and that impacts whether or not people can buy games, but I guess that’s a separate matter.

    Nobody told these companies they need to have these huge budgets to make these games, that they need to spend insane millions to make it the most graphically advanced thing ever and hire big name celebrities to take voice acting roles. All of this is assumed by these companies because these companies are OBSESSED with the idea that video games are just interactive movies. If these big budgets were absolutely necessary, how would little-known indie games with hardly any budget become huge successes? How would crappy little things on iphones end up beating out console games for sales, and why was the Ouya such a smashing success? Ouya’s main goal was to make games from mobile platforms playable on TV screens. If it was absolutely necessary to have these massive budgets for these games trying to imitate Hollywood, the Ouya kickstarter would’ve failed.

    #23 1 year ago
  24. JB

    Subscriber agreements or EULA`s are irrelvant when it comes to The Law in The EU, and a license is no different than a physical copy.

    They`re also trying to play that game in the music industry, with services like redigi – https://www.redigi.com/music

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ReDigi

    It`s just corporate BS, I have no doubt they will fight and prolong the battle, with all sorts of loophole arguments but ultimately games, music or whatever are products – they`re not special just because they´re digital.

    It doesnt matter if they call it a license, or what not, that shit goes out the window when they charge money for it.

    #24 1 year ago
  25. Gheritt White

    Firstly, most of the costs DO take place dev side. It’s crazy to think otherwise, you can *always* economise the soft skills.

    Also, most sales for console games – and we are talking console here – take place on physical media.

    As I see it, it’s a combination of three things: complexity of software (better tech cots more – just think of how much middleware *alone* goes into a game these days), number of people needed to make video game (team sizes have grown from around 40 or 50 at the turn of the century to 200 with games like AC3) and length of time it takes to build a videogames. If you’re unfamiliar with the concepts of a manmonth or a milestone, I suggest you google them. Plus there’s QA costs to think about – bigger, more intricate games take several orders of magnitude longer to test.

    Funnily enough, the games that try and swindle you the most right now are the cheapest one to make – stuff like Farmville and a few mobile games I could mention with ridiculous MTX.

    To be honest, the best business model going out there at the moment is League of Legends, but I can’t see Uncharted or *any* single-player stpry-driven experience going F2P any time soon.

    You want shinier stuff, you gotta pay for it. End of.

    #25 1 year ago
  26. Gheritt White

    @23: Ouya is the future of gaming? Do me a favour. You’d give up your favourite current gen game and be happy playing Android mobile games instead?

    Tbh, it doesn’t matter what you answer because IRL and not online, true gamers are in the minority when it comes to paying customers.

    #26 1 year ago
  27. DSB

    @24 Whether a EULA is truly legally binding or not is subject to each individual legal system. It’s true that it’s not usually deemed enforceable in Germany, but it could well be in a lot of other places.

    Technically any contract is subject to challenge. It doesn’t mean they’re irrelevant.

    #27 1 year ago
  28. salarta

    @25: On your second paragraph, exactly. Most sales take place on physical media for consoles. Cut down on the physical availability and future usage of physical media and most consumers have absolutely no reason to buy these consoles, because having restrictions on where and who can use it means you may as well just buy a digital copy for your PC and save hundreds instead of wasting it by buying a console.

    As said, nobody said these companies are required to have these huge budgets where graphics are the most detailed they can possibly be on the tech, and famous names are attached as voice actors. They’re also spending tons on marketing, and yet in many cases these companies only sell the same amount as got sold during the PS1 or PS2 eras.

    As for QA costs, they’ve clearly been cutting at least some corners there already. Games are regularly launched with major bugs that have to be fixed with patches, something that never happened in past generations when patches weren’t possible, and games with an online component often include beta testing which transfers much of the QA cost onto consumers that are eager to be guinea pigs.

    #28 1 year ago
  29. Gheritt White

    @28: Did you miss the part where I wrote, “bigger, more intricate games take several orders of magnitude longer to test?”. Where you see cutting corners, I see complex games, moving deadlines and spiralling costs.

    Also, *everyone* says that next-gen games need to have whizz bang GFX, Hollywood v/o and ridiculous scope – do you not read reviews? Have you ever sat in a focus group? Most people who buy videogames are NOT gamers, they are people who happen to play games. The former play and enjoy Hotline Miami, the latter plays CoD. Which sells more?

    HOWEVER, this:

    “you may as well just buy a digital copy for your PC and save hundreds instead of wasting it by buying a console.”

    Bang on. 100% right. I’m not saying that the subject of this article is necessarily a successful strategy (it is, in fact, fraught with peril – customer reaction being only one), I’m just saying what *is* happening and *why* it’s happening.

    I reckon something like Steam, Steambox and Big Picture Mode could well be the winning formula, even if it’s not Valve that actually carry it out.

    #29 1 year ago
  30. salarta

    @26: I didn’t say Ouya was “the future of gaming,” I said it points out that games do not require these huge budgets that big name publishers seem to think they need. There’s plenty of interest in games that don’t have $25 million for a budget. As for my favorite game this generation, that’s a difficult question to answer. There are tons of great games, and many of them did have those huge budgets even though such huge budgets were not necessary. Looking over my collection of what I’ve played on my consoles this gen, I’m going to have to say my favorite for the moment is… The Last Story. That or Valkyria Chronicles. I also enjoyed Dark Souls, Demon’s Souls and Bayonetta, but those were more for the gameplay even though I did like everything else about them. The Hyperdimension Neptunia games have also been fairly fun for video game references and and personified video game systems.

    @29: A lot of the budget behind those “bigger, more intricate games” is a result of trying to Hollywood-ize the video game medium, when doing so really isn’t necessary. You can make a big and intricate game in ways that don’t require the graphics to be the best graphics evar or to have Christina Hendricks come in to voice a character. Once upon a time, video games weren’t made with big name celebrities from TV and films voicing characters, and those games were pretty damn successful. Also, right now we’re still entertaining the idea that all that money these companies supposedly need actually goes to video game projects where they need to be, and not toward getting the CEO a fancy new house.

    I guess at least we can agree about the fact this is actually going to do more harm than good for consoles, and actually benefit PCs instead. :P

    #30 1 year ago
  31. DSB

    Ultimately the publisher is responsible for the form the game takes. If those games are too expensive to make, then they’re the ones who need to make the change.

    They’re supposed define what games are. Not the public.

    I don’t remember anyone protesting outside EA until they hired Martin Sheen. Nor Activision until they hired Eminem and 50 Cent. That’s pretty much on them.

    Hollywood went through a similar process. After a few blockbusters sunk a few studios, it finally seemed to sink in that maybe everybody was better off with slightly less extravagant movies.

    As a result you even saw the emergence of studios who specialize in doing a lot with a little. Why the hell not?

    #31 1 year ago
  32. Gheritt White

    @26: “There’s plenty of interest in games that don’t have $25 million for a budget.”
    Define “plenty”. There’s not as much interest as there is in NFS, CoD or GTA. Plus, those fave games you mentioned? Most of them barely broke even (even with comparatively smaller budgets) and the last three didn’t turn a profit.

    I’m kinda with you on the v/o comment though – it’s a nice feature to have, but I don’t think Hollywood v/o has really proven to be of vital interest to the bottom line. And yeah, top execs in all walks of life could always get paid less, I agree, but look at the financials of most third-party pubs and devs right now… it’s not all that pretty.

    @ 31: I think that’s a great sentiment, but I don’t think it a realistic expectation for the average punter not to want a massive leap in GFX in order for them to plunk down cash on a new console. Otherwise they might as well just keep their existing PS3s and X360s. And, may I remind you, this conversation is in the context of shifting new console hardware units – better GFX are the key driver of new sales according to the mass market.

    #32 1 year ago
  33. HauntaVirus

    If true, it’ll be the last console cycle as we know it. Restricting used games will kill off consoles.

    #33 1 year ago
  34. Gheritt White

    @ 33: It’s the last console cycle *anyway*. It’s all gonna be cloud and service oriented from 2020.

    If MS and Sony (and the rest) can get away with providing a platform without producing hardware, they will do.

    #34 1 year ago
  35. salarta

    @32: If we’re looking at how well my favorite games this gen sold, we’d first have to look at actual sales charts and know their budgets (guessing isn’t good enough). However, if we were to assume that they did all fail miserably. Valkyria Chronicles didn’t sell as well because it had next to no marketing and had to rely on word of mouth, while VC2 moved to a portable system fewer people had and completely changed the tone of the series to something nobody really wanted. The Last Story had two problems of being on the Wii at the end of its life cycle (meaning many people aren’t expecting much) and not really getting any marketing outside of Project Rainfall making a big deal about it. Meanwhile, Dark Souls, Demon’s Souls and Bayonetta all likely had huge budgets assigned to them like most of these big name publisher games given their high-quality graphics, length of playable game time, and number of areas to explore. Also the Souls games and Bayonetta had everything voice acted, which may or may not have been a lot.

    As for plenty, I was including mobile games in my thoughts, which may not have been fair to you making your case since I didn’t explicitly say so. We’ve got Angry Birds, Temple Run, Farmville and I’m sure many others I’m not aware of. I generally don’t play mobile or portable games, so it’s hard for me to make a case there, but I’m aware that sales on those devices are significant enough that many big name companies have seriously considered giving up on consoles and doing only mobile phone games. Sega’s latest decision, stupid though it is, is to do exactly this, put the emphasis on mobile devices.

    Yeah, the financial state of many of these companies is in a bad state, but I think most of the time it’s because of the companies doing things like Squeenix, Capcom, etc have been doing. Pouring tons of money into huge projects where they do things absolutely nobody wanted them to do, and treating their install base of consumers like they’re nothing but idiotic sheep that will buy anything they make regardless of quality or treatment of them as consumers. Many of these companies are doing badly because they’re in serious need of some humbling.

    #35 1 year ago
  36. DSB

    @32 I think anyone can see the logic in hardware advancing, but the fact that you get new hardware doesn’t mean you have to go crazy.

    What gets me is that it’s always about “the average punter”, which really translates into saying the customers we have now.

    Don’t we all agree that videogames is (still) a promising young entertainment industry? Shouldn’t you kinda be worried about getting more than the customers you already have?

    Are you really sure that every single person is that concerned with the minutiae of production values? What about the stories videogames tell, what about the mechanics you offer? Where’s the focus on that?

    I’ll go out on a limb and say that the appstore has a much broader audience than any of the major publishers right now, and the reality is that the most popular games aren’t the ones that max out the hardware. Angry Birds never was.

    It makes it all seem very reactionary to me, like I’m looking at a creative industry that has somehow strayed beyond seeing itself as a creative industry. A videogame is a commodity now. You’re not making an interactive story or an interactive experience, you’re putting DVDs that has stuff on them, in a box, and worrying about how to monetize that.

    I’m sorry, but any idiot (not aimed at you, of course) can tell me where the customers are right now. But you can only milk that cow so many times. At some point you’ll need a new one.

    #36 1 year ago
  37. Gheritt White

    @35: Hey, I don’t disagree, those are all valid points of view, especially about the quality of titles which is (a) entirely subjective and (b) a different topic entirely. The fact remains that there is a high volume of significant demand for next-gen consoles producing makes-your-eye-bleed-rainbows quality tech experiences. Since those experiences cost more *but* you can’t charge more for the price of a game *and* digital sales still haven’t overtaken physical sales *on consoles* then you have to try and accrue incremental revenue to fund these experiences, hence the first-parties taking the approach that’s the subject of this article, amongst others.

    Is this approach a recipe for succes, or is it doomed to failure? Time will tell, but from where I’m sitting it’s looking pretty dicey. Mr Hodges may just have a point.

    #37 1 year ago
  38. DSB

    It sounds to me like you really, really want to satisfy Erthazus, and I think that alone should make you feel dirty.

    Seriously though, when I look at a game like Deus Ex: HR, I couldn’t be less concerned with whether the spotlights are blinding enough, or whether his latex looks wet enough, but it does make a pretty big difference that the writing is stupid and that the AI is retarded.

    I can’t see myself in those priorities.

    #38 1 year ago
  39. Gheritt White

    @36: Well said. My fave game in years was Portal, which was short, not especially full of whizz-bang GFX doodads and not especially long, and I believe it turned a profit. But it was never a mass seller, not by any stretch. However there’s still the notion we need to chase 5M – 9M unit sales. Perhaps if games were shorter and budgeted austerely coupled companies downsizing drastically while adopting a Valve-type model both they and we would all be better off.

    The sad thing is, Valve don’t make CoD, NFS or FIFA. And, right now, this is the way companies that do actually think.

    On a personal note, I’d be very disappointed to see games like Crysis or Uncharted disappear and replaced by games like Angry Birds, but the future for that sort of game doesn’t look very viable (on consoles) unless you adopt these methods.

    #39 1 year ago
  40. salarta

    @36: Exactly, I’m glad to see someone else thinking the same way as me at least in the very broad ways. While there ARE a lot of games as of late that I enjoy (I have a huge backlog now), I also find that too often video games have been getting their creative side sucked out of them by suits that view video games as a mere commodity and not a creative entity.

    I think this may be why Capcom, Squeenix and Konami (excluding Kojima Productions) have been declining in sales lately. The suits at the top are obsessing over what they think will sell more copies based on assumptions about demographics and trends. It’s part of why I’m so opposed to projects like DmC and Tomb Raider and 3rd Birthday, to me they’re gutting the creative elements of already existing IPs to try and force in whatever the suits think will attract a certain demographic.

    @37: I feel like I need to say that if I sound at all hostile toward you, then I’m genuinely sorry, that’s not my intent at all. I sometimes come off that way when I don’t mean to, and there are other posters on here that say and do things that certainly don’t help matters. I’ve been enjoying this intelligent discussion with you. :)

    I don’t think the quality of titles is truly a different matter. We’re talking about companies having these big budgets and needing to find ways to make more money instead of losing it. One of the simplest ways is to ensure quality, at least in the eyes of consumers as a whole. If the consumers think that a big release sucks or that the company’s attitude when releasing it sucks, that results in people not wanting to buy future products from the company. This in turn means that a company can spend as much as they want on a project, if they’re in a cycle of consumers not trusting them with their money, those companies are in trouble, and no amount of locking new game purchases to only one console/account will help.

    #40 1 year ago
  41. Gheritt White

    @38: Erthazus doesn’t actually know what he’s talking about and comes from a place of emotion, masquerading as cold hard fact; I’d like to think I do the reverse! And I *agree* – with any good game, after a while you just see the matrix. But consoles have *always* relied on better GFX as the key hardware sales driver and that hasn’t changed with this gen.

    When everything goes digital, things will be different. Most of the problems arising from the subject of this article are solved when you remove the physical medium.

    My bet is by 2015, the consoles will be selling more games digitally than physically via XBLM and PSN and then this all becomes moot. How can you trade in a code? Plus less fingers in the pie means more profits. But, for the time being, this is where we are.

    #41 1 year ago
  42. Gheritt White

    @40: You raise an interesting point. Does quality really equal whizz-bang GFX in the eyes of 17 of those 20M CoD players? Guess we’ll all find out in the next 18 months to 2 years.

    #42 1 year ago
  43. DSB

    @39 I think the lesson from the movie industry is about diversification, which is really what’s lacking in videogames.

    You have Michael Bay and James Cameron making huge blockbusters, but at the same time you have many different forms of lower tiers making very different movies.

    Indie is trying to fill that gap in videogames, but five guys in a Starbucks can only do so much. Kickstarter looked to be promising, but it seems to have its limits too.

    It’s gonna take some kind of meeting eachother halfway to really get the same thing, and I hope we get there.

    #43 1 year ago
  44. druvirus

    One thing regarding this: “you may as well just buy a digital copy for your PC and save hundreds instead of wasting it by buying a console.” and also a quote from above of: “Most people who buy videogames are NOT gamers, they are people who happen to play games.”

    See, here’s the problem with both of these quotes together: The majority of people who buy video gamers are not gamers .. thus they don’t actually have PCs good enough to buy and play a digital copy of a game adequately. The reason that consoles still sell so heavily is because, despite us being in the technological age, a lot of people still won’t plunk down more than $300 on a Netbook so they can go on Facebook and use Microsoft Word. You’d be surprised how many 15+ year olds still buy CDs and DVDs because they, honestly, don’t know how to torrent.

    The charm of a console is more of a “set it and forget it!” mentality had among the general public. It is a self contained box that plays video games and movies .. and you don’t need to tinker with it or download programs or do this and that. A lot of people don’t want to be bothered by building and maintaining a gaming rig so they can download Steam and play on their PC .. because they aren’t gamers. Even if it costs a little more in the long run, they’d rather just buy a PS3, get a used game, and be done with it. People are LAZY first and foremost. 90% of America doesn’t even know what “the cloud” is and yet you expect them to trust it to hold all of their games rather than them have it physically in their hand? You give people entirely too much credit.

    #44 1 year ago

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