Sessler's Soapbox: Game Pricing and Mass Effect 3's DLC

Posted: February 28, 2012
Sessler's Soapbox: Game Pricing and Mass Effect 3's DLC
Adam discusses the current price of video games and the recent debate over Mass Effect 3's day-one DLC.

Comments are Closed

  • killuuminnaati

    Has anyone heard what the prices will be for the next gen console games? Will we see $70? they seem to jump up $10, in price, every generation. Will they stay at $60, if the games are then only downloads and not on a disc?

    Posted: March 2, 2012 4:39 AM
  • MrLee95

    Adam you said the CE is $130??? I pre-ordered the "Mass Effect 3 N7 Collector s Edition - with Bonus!"
    and it's only $79.
    http://www.gamestop.com/pc/g ames/mass-effect-3-n7-collecto rs-edition/91371
    Does that one come with the DLC and is there another $130 CE version out there?

    Posted: March 2, 2012 3:19 AM
  • balto85

    I don't know what this DLC is because I'm staying away from any information on Mass Effect 3 because everyone just loves to gives spoilers, and I want to have a good experience with the game. That being said, it doesn't sound like it's content that's a must-have in order to play the game, so I'm fine with that. Will I get it on the first day? No. I'll save it for my second playthrough. But I can see where Bioware is coming from. They're a business, and they want and need to make money. If you're one of those that has a problem with this, ask yourself this question. If you ran a business where your product was extremely hot and there were lots of people who couldn't get enough of it, would you do extra things on the side that you could sell to people to give them a choice if they wanted to pay it? If your answer is no, then you're either the nicest, most generous person in the world, or you're kidding yourself.

    Bottom line is, after you finish playing a game and you can ask yourself if you had fun and it was a good experience and your answer is yes, then you got your money's worth. That's it. The idea of being told afterward that there's extra content you can buy for it, and that suddenly changing your feeling to, "Wait, there was more and you deprived me of it? What a rip off", that's just nuts. You're not entitled to everything they do just because you paid $60 for a game. You got your game, end of story. Do you want more? Then they have this for sale, and it doesn't matter if it's on Day 1 or Day 365. If they make you pay for missions that prevent you from following the story, then that's too far. Granted, two of their DLC missions on Mass Effect 2 were a little too integrated into the story for them to be DLC, in my opinion, and you really should play them for Mass Effect 3, but you can do without it though, so I think it was fair for them to make you buy those. I wouldn't have noticed something was missing if I had not played them when the game was over. But if you get a complete experience with your game, but they have additional things to add to it, then that's completely fair for them to charge.

    Posted: March 2, 2012 3:12 AM
  • nutzViking

    Interesting SoapBox. I can't say I wasn't shocked when you mentioned the 100$ price-tag, but: I get your point.

    Posted: March 2, 2012 3:01 AM
  • Onikinou

    hearing adam talk about works of literature and relating it to gaming makes me want to read those works he mentioned. this is why adam is so awesome.

    Posted: March 2, 2012 12:18 AM
  • Atavax

    it is also bull that he implies that if we don't pay more for games, less games will be made. If everyone refused to spend more then $10 per game, there wouldn't be less games, if anything there would be more games out there. If we reduce the amount we're willing to pay for a game, we would reduce the cost to made a game and more people could afford to make a videogame.

    Posted: March 1, 2012 11:52 PM
  • Atavax

    I don't buy this whole companies need to charge more argument. These pricing schemes always happen first on big titles like Mass Effect 3 of Call of Duty. I don't think there is anyone remotely familiar with the gaming industry that believes that Mass Effect 3 or the next Call of Duty game won't make butt loads of money for the publishers if everyone who bought the game only had to pay $60 to get the entire game.

    Also, the only reason why the prices to produce videogames is increasing is because publishers think they can make more money if they invest more money into the game, the increased cost to make AAA games is not some magical phenomenon, it is a publisher created phenomenon. Publishers don't have to charge you more to profit from the game, they just think they can get away with charging you more. Until consumers refuse to pay more for a game, developers will continue to charge you more.

    Also its funny how you say extra $10 for hi def when pc games are higher def then console games and most of the time are $10 cheaper.

    Posted: March 1, 2012 11:45 PM
  • DevinShadowV

    Even though I hate day one DLC's but Adam is right the game companies have gone too far on pricing games. I personally would pay a COD game with only mutliplayer for around 40.00 plus DLC it would really help the gaming industry that it's in a tail spin right now with this problem.

    Posted: March 1, 2012 8:14 PM
  • Devils_Advocate

    I think that is why they release DLC....to avoid making a game cost $100 on release.

    Posted: March 1, 2012 6:22 PM
  • Memu

    And as for DLC, I don't play that. I have a substantial backlog of games to play so I just wait for the Ultimate or GoTY edition to come out that has all the add-ons and DLC in one package. I don't need to play the latest game the day it comes out. It will still be the same game a year later and even better it will be the complete game and probably cheaper as well.

    Posted: March 1, 2012 5:59 PM
  • Memu

    Someone at Naughty Dog thought this was a good idea. Multiplayer is a $10 add on if you buy Uncharted 3 used. And you can only get two of the trophies by playing multiplayer. They are trivial to get, but you need them to get Platinum trophy. Are there people who will buy the add-on just so they can platinum? Very few I suspect. So all you (ND) are doing with this action is causing resentment without gaining basically anything. Dumb move!

    Posted: March 1, 2012 5:52 PM
  • Mystical_Knight

    I'm one of those who judges the worth on how long it is. Take the downloadable Alan Wake game on XBLA, I was going to get it but then I heard it has about 4-5 hours of gameplay. Sorry, but $15 for 4 hours of gameplay is a little steep, $10 would still be a little steep IMO. On the flipside, I'd pay $100 for Skyrim, sure, I have 230 hrs. in that game so far, finished the main quest, about halfway through most of the faction quests. Still have quite a few sidequests and tons of places I haven't been yet/found on the map. There's 1 main town hold I haven't been to yet either.

    Anyway, yes, the CE of ME3 is $79.95 or whatever, not sure where's he's getting $130 from, maybe he's thinking of Skyrim. I have the regular ed. pre-ordered, if I get the DLC I'll pay the $10 for it, or maybe wait for a deal on XBL. Either way, I'm saving at least $10 by not getting the CE.

    Posted: March 1, 2012 5:27 PM
  • JeeshusChrist

    I totally get your point and agree with some extent. I think when games go digital the price will drop. I think single player games that are under 20-30 hours should be $40 but I don't think bigger games should get any bigger than $60. The reason I say this is because $60 drop on a game right now is already quite an investment especially with the economy and upping it to $100 that would just be catastrophic. It wouldn't work well because I don't think anyone wants to invest $100 in anything without reassurance of their moneys worth. The issue would just change from quantity to quality as the price rises. It doesn't matter if you get 100 hours because if those 100 hours suck its not worth $100. I really think game developers should just focus on single player or multiplayer because most games with the combination don't do that well and the prices should just somewhere between the $20-$60. Game developers should just embrace digital distribution now because its getting bigger and a more convenient market that saves you money.

    Basically bigger games should embrace how the Indie Game Community prices their games from $1-$30. ($30 is the highest I've seen) Every time I've bought an Indie game I believe I was charged for the exact quality and quantity of the game. $1 you expect to be something quick or can be broken down into quick games and is simplistic in design and maybe as well visually. While a $30 is a bigger project that will give you a longer experience with more dedication in complex visuals and design.

    Posted: March 1, 2012 5:20 PM
  • Wulfgarr

    First off I must say I sympathize with the Australians for getting screwed over by their govment.They should really protest. I wish we did have the option to pay less for single player games,especially since all the games I play are single player.There are a lot of us folk that don't play well with others.If only the companies would give us that option,especially in this crummy economic market.

    Posted: March 1, 2012 5:10 PM
  • aPoLiS117

    however much i like adams pricing structure, it will never happen. lets take battlefield 3, if you broke that into 3 parts, single player, co-op, and multiplayer and sold them each for $20 you would end up with alot of people just buying multiplayer and ea losing a ton of money because of it. Dice would be blamed for not having each piece good enough to buy on its own. so by keeping it all together you're buying the "whole experience" which basically translates to overpaying for the one part that you wanted with the filler thrown in to help you convince your self that it's a complete game.

    Altho if this system was already was in place i feel like they would have made bf3 multiplayer only, and all the money spent on the single player and coop being put towards more and better maps and features. Leaving all the single player and coop stuff to bad company series, maybe even eliminating multiplayer from that.

    Posted: March 1, 2012 5:06 PM
  • spartain999

    i wish i could get games for $60 i live in Australia and the prices hear for a standard game are $100. why do i have to pay an extra $40, i uses to think it was because the American $$ was worth more then the Australian but now the Australian $ is basically the same now. so what is it does the shipping cost $40 dollar or is it some stupid tax can some tell me why you guys have any right to complain when you only pay $60 and get every dam game days before Australia and most of the world i dont get mass effect till the 8th.

    Posted: March 1, 2012 4:23 PM
  • phantomzxro

    Again the collector edition is $79.99 and if you did not have this "day one dlc" than there would be no other way to get this content other than buying the collector edition. So i don't see the problem in that when it comes to mass effect 3. Also to Adam point on collectors edition i don't think it has anything to do with being superior or anything. For the most part i think it just boils down to if your a fan of something you may be willing to pay extra for more bells and whistles.

    Secondly many have to understand making a game comes in many parts and just making a solid game is only one part of it. There is a marketing and business side to it as well. my point being when the dead line hits most times anything that won't fix within the release window is cut or drop and won't be in the game period.

    But since game companies know they can make money on dlc they schedule a dlc window after or while the game is being compete. Now i know its debatable if even that is right or wrong when it comes down to the internet, but there is a good chance that all this stuff would not be in the game if there was no dlc model.

    Posted: March 1, 2012 4:17 PM
  • D_Money2180

    Collector's Edition was only $80, don't know where he got that figure...

    Posted: March 1, 2012 4:15 PM
  • Perplexed_Waffle

    I have no problem with day one DLC. If people really feel like they need it, then buy it and help the industry out. If people want to spend $100+ on a CE, then publishers/developers should most definitely sell them, and they should continue to make them as cheap as possible on their in to maximize the profits.

    Posted: March 1, 2012 4:05 PM
  • NateC76

    I completely agree with Adam on this subject. It is a business, and the companies out there are doing what they believe that they have to in order to keep their share holders happy. If they do not, share holders sell off and the money to create a lot of the games that come out during the year goes away, or is lost in process, causing cancellations, delays or even worse people losing their jobs. That's capitalism, and it may not always be fair, but it's the system that we are currently in and what we have to accept. We may think that it's evil of the developers, and bad form on their side, but it's only half the story. Used games actually does have this effect on their bottom lines, and companies like GameStop, Best Buy and Wal-Mart all are contributing to this behavior, and some like GameStop profit from it as well. They sell DLC in stores, and make money off of that as well. So, in effect the retailers are partly the cause, and benefit from the effect as well. You don't see GameStop, Best Buy or Wal-Mart going to developers and saying. "Hey, we'll offer you a 5-10% profit share on your games sold used for games that have only been on the market for 3 years or less, but something like that would also help ease the burden, but it will never happen as well. Which is why we see Microsoft with rumors of not allowing used games, or needing the online passes for used games. It's all market driven cause and effect.

    Posted: March 1, 2012 3:43 PM