Sony Planning a "Tailored Approach" to Vita Game Pricing

Sony Planning a "Tailored Approach" to Vita Game Pricing

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Sony intends to stave off the growing threat of cheap smartphone games by offering Vita titles at various different price-points.

There's been a lot of noise lately about the traditional retail retail price-point for games being counterproductive, particularly in the handheld and mobile markets, which are dominated by cheap, simple titles made by small teams.

Last week, PlayStation Europe boss Jim Ryan said it would be "foolish and nave to ignore what's happening" in the smartphone sector. Talking to Gameindustry.biz today, he said: "I think it would be safe to assume we will take a more tailored approach [to pricing] than perhaps we've done in the past."

That doesn't mean Sony is just going to start churning out Angry Birds knock-offs, Ryan maintains that traditional handhelds like the Vita still have a lot to offer the core gamer.

"Absolutely it does do other things, but it has been designed as a gaming device, and a perfectly logical consequence of that is that the gaming experiences you can have on Vita are superior to what is possible on a device that has other functionality at its heart," he said.

"It's our challenge to ensure that the gaming experience that we provide is closer to that TV console experience than it is to your 69p thing that you've downloaded on your iPhone," he continued. "If we do that and we provide great value to the consumer on games like Uncharted, I think the possibility to sustain historic console type price points is there."

With any luck, cheaper Vita games should offset the cost of its absurdly pricy memory cards, great.

Source: Gameindustry.biz

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It will have Disgaea 3, Dragon's Crown, and Persona 4. I am not worried about my experience with it.

It can do other things! Why shouldn't it?

When I read the title I was super happy, then I realized they aren't changing the memory card price, and then I was ultra pissed/sad again

Until i see hard numbers, im not changing my stance in regards to the Vita's pricing.

But for now, im more interested in...

Grey Carter:
the traditional retail retail price-point for games being counterproductive

You might want to check where that link actually goes.

Anyone who is not skeptical is a fool. Sony doesn't know how to give value priced software to their customers anymore than it thinks this won't become the next mobile pirate platform.

Persona 4, that's all that matters to me. I have never got the chance to play Persona 4 (only P3, then my PS2 borked), something I wish to rectify.

Seriously? More whining about memory card pricing, when most games save on their cart? And even then most people are going to buy the Vita + Game package, which *gasp* comes with a free memory stick. And the prices you're whining about are from Gamestop, who have a history of way overcharging for memory sticks. I know hating on Sony is fashionable, but its seriously bad journalism when you keep harping on unconfirmed prices from a vendor who overcharges.

Furioso:
When I read the title I was super happy, then I realized they aren't changing the memory card price, and then I was ultra pissed/sad again

"We're going to have progressive pricing on our games, but you'll need to buy our expensive proprietary memory cards first!"

Hunh... well the Vita is a confusing little console isn't it? A simple yet huge upgrade with the second analog stick, yet a lot of strange gimmicks with the motion sensing and the dual touchscreens. A step forward from the PSP with a massive launching line-up of games, big and small, as well as a focus specifically on games rather than the other things it can do, and yet a step back with a smaller battery life. And now a variety of game pricing to appeal towards a wider range of gamers and game developers, and yet a higher memory stick and console cost that puts a significant barrier of entry to it all... I'm so emotionally torn...

Zachary Amaranth:

"We're going to have progressive pricing on our games, but you'll need to buy our expensive proprietary memory cards first!"

Yup. Sony doesn't want ANYONE stepping on their toes there.
While the rest of the world pulls away with efficiently priced SD cards, Sony is still pushing their gouging bullshit.

Any defense one can muster for Sony dies in their throat because Sony always gives the bare-minimum amount; which kind of necessitates an upgrade no matter what games you plan to download.

And just like that a thought occurs... alternating crazy-good and simply-bad announcements... It's like they want people to either love or hate it... Almost as though they want people arguing over whether the 3DS is better or not more than usual... Is Sony intentionally trying to ramp up a console war or something? ._.

I'M ONTO YOU SONY!!! You'll never get me to talk about your console in a negative light! Waitwhat...

First thing I thought was:

"So....balancing out the insane cost of memory sticks. ' -' "

RedEyesBlackGamer:
Persona 4. I am not worried about my experience with it.

I lol'd

But for good non-jerkwad reasons (for once).

Atmos Duality:

Yup. Sony doesn't want ANYONE stepping on their toes there.
While the rest of the world pulls away with efficiently priced SD cards, Sony is still pushing their gouging bullshit.

Any defense one can muster for Sony dies in their throat because Sony always gives the bare-minimum amount; which kind of necessitates an upgrade no matter what games you plan to download.

It's a shame people will defend them anyway.

Zachary Amaranth:

Atmos Duality:

Yup. Sony doesn't want ANYONE stepping on their toes there.
While the rest of the world pulls away with efficiently priced SD cards, Sony is still pushing their gouging bullshit.

Any defense one can muster for Sony dies in their throat because Sony always gives the bare-minimum amount; which kind of necessitates an upgrade no matter what games you plan to download.

It's a shame people will defend them anyway.

While all that is true, they get one free pass from me for having no region lock. That is really good. So the memory card business is their one free pass.
But remember, Sony,


That is it.

Atmos Duality:

Zachary Amaranth:

"We're going to have progressive pricing on our games, but you'll need to buy our expensive proprietary memory cards first!"

Yup. Sony doesn't want ANYONE stepping on their toes there.
While the rest of the world pulls away with efficiently priced SD cards, Sony is still pushing their gouging bullshit.

Any defense one can muster for Sony dies in their throat because Sony always gives the bare-minimum amount; which kind of necessitates an upgrade no matter what games you plan to download.

You're claiming gouging, in an article about how they're dropping prices from the standard $40. What the fuck is wrong inside your head?

OutrageousEmu:
You're claiming gouging, in an article about how they're dropping prices from the standard $40.

Notice what they're talking about in the article: GAMES
Notice what I'm talking about: SD CARDS, the medium on which those downloadable games will be stored.

Sony pushes their proprietary versions of SD Cards for use with their system, instead of letting the consumer choose from other, cheaper brands; they are in a way, creating and hiking prices because of monopolistic practices.

Sony overcharged/gouged for this VERY SAME THING on the original PSP.
Add Sony has not shown any intentions of changing that practice for the Vita.

What the fuck is wrong inside your head?

I should be asking the same of you; what's with the attitude? Did my post kill your dog? Shit in your cereal? Or do you just get off on using stupid ad-hominems to close your arguments?

Atmos Duality:

OutrageousEmu:
You're claiming gouging, in an article about how they're dropping prices from the standard $40.

Notice what they're talking about in the article: GAMES
Notice what I'm talking about: SD CARDS, the medium on which those downloadable games will be stored.

Yes, notice what is actually relevant to this article - GAMES
Notice what is not relevant in the slightest and is just trolling - SD CARDS.

Also, if consumers want to pay market prices for SD cards, they should for the Vita too - $500. If you're going to claim that sbullshit, actually stick to it.

And in case you missed the memo, the games will also be in physical form.

OutrageousEmu:
Yes, notice what is actually relevant to this article - GAMES
Notice what is not relevant in the slightest and is just trolling - SD CARDS.

I'll spell it out for you:

1) Lower game prices = Higher consumption; basic economics. Certifiable fact.
2) Sony's Online Store (which I've seen and used), prices competitively to retail; so any price cuts made to retail versions are clearly going to transfer to the online store. Certifiable fact (unless Sony is acting colossally stupid)
3) Lower prices = more purchases per user, which equates to them needing more space for their games. This applies to BOTH PHYSICAL RETAIL AND THE ONLINE STORE, BY ECONOMIC LAW.

Also, if consumers want to pay market prices for SD cards, they should for the Vita too - $500. If you're going to claim that sbullshit, actually stick to it.

That's called a "Loss Leader" strategy. Sony subsidizes production of their system so they can make greater profits on game licensing, and secondary/related purchases (extra controllers, cables, and of course, PROPRIETARY SD CARDS).

Sony, Microsoft and Nintendo ALL DO THIS to some degree.

Well, if I see a game launch at $20 instead of $40, I am going to assume it sucks. For games that get great reviews, you'll still pay $40. Who is this helping besides people who buy bad games at launch?

Further, trying to compete against 99 cent phone games is a bad idea. You can't match that price point with a Vita game but putting yourself into that market just makes your games look too expensive. They are different markets just like handheld and console games are a different market. They were smart enough not to try and charge $60 for handheld games because they recognize they can't compete in that market with handheld titles. Here, they are only lowering the value of Vita games to that of 99 cent disposable games while charging much more.

BTW, to all of those who have been asking for this. Games that suck go down automatically even if they do launch at $60. Within a few months a shitty game will be down by 50% atleast so there really isn't any need for progressive pricing. If you wanna complain about a short shooter being the same price as an epic game like Skyrim, complain about something legitimate like price fixing (you know, when different companies get together to set prices on competing products to avoid price competition).

Crono1973:
snip

Did you read the article? Seriously? Nobody said they're going to compete with 99c games. In fact, he actually said the opposite - "It's our challenge to ensure that the gaming experience that we provide is closer to that TV console experience than it is to your 69p thing that you've downloaded on your iPhone".

They're very much aware that the iphone has created a market for itself that the Vita can't really hope to crack, so they're going the other way and creating high end gaming experiences, but pricing them at a much more fluid rate then they currently do. Uncharted, LBP and other key franchises will almost certainly be priced at the higher end, new IP or smaller games will be priced cheaper to make them more appealing.

This is fantastic news, whats the problem? If we're lucky the same thing will happen to consoles, because that would be brilliant.

The console equivalent would be one that struck me recently actually... Rayman Origins, a game I would love to play, has been released at the same price point as things like Arkham City and Skyrim. And there is no way I'm paying that money for a 2d platformer. Now if they'd released it at 25-30 instead of 40, I'd probably have bought it day 1.

I like it. There will always be a place for AAA titles on a device like this, especially since it's the only reason anyone would even think about getting it. But by just looking at the 3DS launch and the PSP failure the biggest problem with modern handhelds is that it's not financially possible to put the resources behind devs to put out these great AAA games on a handheld often enough, and the end result is a drought of games. A better pricing model with small DLC games will solve this problem beautifully, and I love that Sony's not being as moronic as Nintendo has been with the 3DS.

 

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