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THQ: Console makers need to "adjust their business models" for new consumer experiences

During the Goldman Sachs Technology and Internet Conference yesterday, THQ's Brian Farrell told investors that in order for the firm to realize the potential of its new pricing model - which debuts with MX vs ATV: Alive - console makers need to "adjust their business models."

According to Farrell, THQ's experimental packaged goods pricing model will help bring new people into the market, which reiterates his stance on the scary, $59.99 game price point. Thus, allowing third-parties to control their own microtransactions on consoles, something Xbox 360 does not allow, it would become much easier to offer games at lower cost with more content available for purchase online.

"What we really need, and we've been talking to them about it, is for Microsoft, Sony and Nintendo - if they really want to stay at the cutting edge of the games industry - they need to adjust their business models to allow for these new consumer experiences," he said per CVG. "Consumers are going to demand it, in our view. Again, we're platform agnostic: if someone else comes with some kind of a Cloud system or one of the other platforms takes off competitively [in a way] that allows consumers to consume the way they want?

"That's going to be the winner at the end of the day, and that's where we're going to migrate our content. We'll make great franchises. If new platforms emerge, or the current winners adjust their business models - which we're pushing for really hard - we have to keep our flexibility."

"Our main focus is to deliver these big entertainment franchises, and then leverage them across the screens to do one of two things: obviously the primary objective is making money, but the second one is that we can use Facebook, iPhone, iPad, some of these other devices, as ways to keep our customer engaged with our product and also to market to that consumer.

"For example, we have several Facebook games up now leveraging one of our bigger brands; they do two things: they generate some revenue and cash flow although for a company of our size it's not that meaningful yet, but if someone enjoys the UFC or the Saints Row experience, they can stay engaged with it.

"What we're thinking about those new markets is if we create great entertainment - and we've been doing this for 20 years - we need to be platform agnostic and figure out where's the business opportunity for a particular consumer on a particular platform."

MX vs ATV: Alive will be released in the US for $39.99 (£25), and will have both free and paid DLC released for it. It is expected to be released this spring on both PS3 and Xbox 360.

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Stephany Nunneley

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Half-blind/half-dyslexic, bad typist, wine enthusiast, humanitarian, intellectual savant, idiot savior, lover of all things nonsensical, animal hoarder and highly sarcastic.

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