Riccitiello: games need variable pricing because $60 is “a giant F-U to a very large number of people”

Tuesday, 22 October 2013 22:32 GMT By Stephany Nunneley

Former Electronic Arts CEO John Riccitiello feels that console and PC games need to have variable pricing like mobile games, because asking customer to pay $60 is “a giant F-U to a very large number of people.”

Speaking during the Gaming Insiders Summit, attended by [a]listdaily, Riccitiello said the proof is in the install base.

“There’s not been a console game with even half as many installs as Clash of Clans,” he said. “Puzzle & Dragons has got more installs than any console game in history. Getting a larger audience through variable pricing is a really useful thing.”

Riccitiello also feels the majority of the industry has yet to “get” the games as a service philosophy.

“More than anything, what the traditional game industry should learn from mobile is it’s really about service,” he said. “It’s an ongoing business. You’d think we would have learned this some time ago, but I find it interesting that WoW and Sim City and GTA and Starcraft and many other games all fell over at launch when they put their service components together.

“Some of the biggest brands – I’d argue almost all the biggest brands – fell over from lack of the testing and research that mobile people do in the regular course of their day.”

During the same talk, Riccitiello said that game brands also need to be consistent but innovative, and brought up Call of Duty, Grand Theft Auto, and FIFA as examples.

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