Good news for aussie's consumers about game prices. Check it out

Linky here http://www.kotaku.com.au/2013/02/apple-and-microsoft-summonsed-to-explain-price-disparities-in-australia/

Nothing on escapist yet and I usually dont like Kotaku for any news but this is too good not to share.

This is good news. The so called Australian Tax is just complete bullshit. Especially now with digital distribution and the parity with the US dollar. It's pretty much just a scam that these companies get away with.

I think this is less about game prices and more about hardware/technology but nonetheless this seems like a very interesting case.

Thank god, it's about time! I hate seeing americans and others saying they can get brand new games for $60.

kman123:
I think this is less about game prices and more about hardware/technology but nonetheless this seems like a very interesting case.

I hope it's all software really, it hardly seems fair to single out one form of software to not require price similarities.

At this point anything that helps the disparity in the land down under is going to be a positive. Especially in the case of Adobe, who already over charges a ton for their software suites.

They are going to fix the broken prices?

What broken prices?
You mean the exploitation by certain companies?

Buy from dungeoncrawl or ozgameshop, i.e. any company that bypasses the price-fixing distribution monopoly via parallel importing, and do yourself a favour.

Danceofmasks:
What broken prices?
You mean the exploitation by certain companies?

Buy from dungeoncrawl or ozgameshop, i.e. any company that bypasses the price-fixing distribution monopoly via parallel importing, and do yourself a favour.

Ive been buying from dungeoncrawl more than likely longer than you have. Anything that helps with price inflation is good as far as I am concerned.

kingthrall:

Danceofmasks:
What broken prices?
You mean the exploitation by certain companies?

Buy from dungeoncrawl or ozgameshop, i.e. any company that bypasses the price-fixing distribution monopoly via parallel importing, and do yourself a favour.

Ive been buying from dungeoncrawl more than likely longer than you have. Anything that helps with price inflation is good as far as I am concerned.

I find that implausible, seeing as I boycotted them for 2 years for saying "pc gaming is dying."

It would be interesting to see if this goes anywhere. I had a minor victory today: I bought NHL 13 for $59 at JB Hi Fi. If all console games were priced like that I'd actually go back to buying them in stores instead of ordering from overseas.

Danceofmasks:

kingthrall:

Danceofmasks:
What broken prices?
You mean the exploitation by certain companies?

Buy from dungeoncrawl or ozgameshop, i.e. any company that bypasses the price-fixing distribution monopoly via parallel importing, and do yourself a favour.

Ive been buying from dungeoncrawl more than likely longer than you have. Anything that helps with price inflation is good as far as I am concerned.

I find that implausible, seeing as I boycotted them for 2 years for saying "pc gaming is dying."

you boycotted them 2 years ago. Ive been shopping at their store on elizabeth street and when their store was solely on ebay not standalone website 5-7 years ago.

kingthrall:

Danceofmasks:

kingthrall:

Ive been buying from dungeoncrawl more than likely longer than you have. Anything that helps with price inflation is good as far as I am concerned.

I find that implausible, seeing as I boycotted them for 2 years for saying "pc gaming is dying."

you boycotted them 2 years ago. Ive been shopping at their store on elizabeth street and when their store was solely on ebay not standalone website 5-7 years ago.

Hipsters, please calm down!

SEriously though, I am looking forward to seeing how this case develops

They'd better come up with some good fucking answers. It shocks me how the games industry is so blatantly money-grabbing and unethical, yet so many people on this website have the audacity to accuse pirates of being the scum of the earth for stealing from the poor defenseless multi-nationals. I don't pirate or condone piracy because it's illegal, but game companies aren't the victims because they choose to charge unreasonable prices for no valid reason.

LookingGlass:
It would be interesting to see if this goes anywhere. I had a minor victory today: I bought NHL 13 for $59 at JB Hi Fi. If all console games were priced like that I'd actually go back to buying them in stores instead of ordering from overseas.

More and more game companies are selling software to JB Hi Fi at reduced prices.

Most of the new releases are <$69 (the same games are $99+ at EB) and it's because Peter Green started a big importing initiative mid-last year, JB was importing new releases and ordering less localised versions of the game, they were sold side by side with a an import sticker on the ones that were imported and there were big price differences.

Because JB imported from a source different from the manufacturer the game companies were losing money.

An ultimatum was sent basically saying "Lower your prices or we'll just import all our stock" and it worked for the most part.

Sleeping dogs, dishonored, darksiders II, WWE 13, FF 13-2 among others were all released at a price point of either $69 or $59 - in fact the only games in recent times I've seen released at JB at a higher price point were CoD:BLOPS2 and Ni no kuni (JB hasn't had a good relationship with activision so I understand this one and I'm guessing ni no kuni is higher because there is a legitimate availability issue).

- JB Employee :)

P.S the staff prices I get on new releases usually bring them down to exactly equal or even less than what I can get them for imported (price + postage)

The best part is that since they are being forced into coming to the table, it now gives them less credibility when they finally make up an excuse. Not that they really had one to begin with, I just hope the government will have the guts to take the big companies on.

kman123:
I think this is less about game prices and more about hardware/technology but nonetheless this seems like a very interesting case.

^ this. Games really aren't the focus of this enquiry, though if we get action on game pricing as well as a consequence then that'll obviously be very welcome.

From reading other news stories over the past few months my understanding is that the big target of the enquiry is business software and, to a lesser extent, hardware. And high visibility stuff like the price of songs on iTunes (refuse to use it personally, so wouldn't know). We think we get gouged pretty badly for games, and it's true, we do, but there's business software packages out there where the price differences run into the thousands, where it's literally cheaper to buy someone a return plane ticket to the US to go buy it there than it is to buy it from Australia.

Whatislove:

LookingGlass:
It would be interesting to see if this goes anywhere. I had a minor victory today: I bought NHL 13 for $59 at JB Hi Fi. If all console games were priced like that I'd actually go back to buying them in stores instead of ordering from overseas.

More and more game companies are selling software to JB Hi Fi at reduced prices.

Most of the new releases are <$69 (the same games are $99+ at EB) and it's because Peter Green started a big importing initiative mid-last year, JB was importing new releases and ordering less localised versions of the game, they were sold side by side with a an import sticker on the ones that were imported and there were big price differences.

Because JB imported from a source different from the manufacturer the game companies were losing money.

An ultimatum was sent basically saying "Lower your prices or we'll just import all our stock" and it worked for the most part.

Sleeping dogs, dishonored, darksiders II, WWE 13, FF 13-2 among others were all released at a price point of either $69 or $59 - in fact the only games in recent times I've seen released at JB at a higher price point were CoD:BLOPS2 and Ni no kuni (JB hasn't had a good relationship with activision so I understand this one and I'm guessing ni no kuni is higher because there is a legitimate availability issue).

- JB Employee :)

P.S the staff prices I get on new releases usually bring them down to exactly equal or even less than what I can get them for imported (price + postage)

Ah I hadn't heard about that. Useful information, thanks. That's very good to hear.

Im unsure how trade laws work in australia but if were talking about a free market economy the businesses are generally allowed to charge whatever they want. Problem is theres that whole "charge what the market can bare" principle in basic economics too.

Either way Im glad that the austrailian government is acting. It always annoyed me that aussies got charged so much more when their currency worth isnt much different from ours. Last time I heard the US dollar was 2 or 3 cents more valuable then the Australian dollar which certainly isnt a big enough difference for them to be paying twice what we do when the real difference in equal prices amounts to about $1.50 per sale (assuming my maths right)

Danceofmasks:
What broken prices?
You mean the exploitation by certain companies?

Buy from dungeoncrawl or ozgameshop, i.e. any company that bypasses the price-fixing distribution monopoly via parallel importing, and do yourself a favour.

While this is an option, and many people do this, being dismissive of pricing in local markets being brought into line is just stupid really.

Sure, I buy from those websites, but some of those take 2 weeks for delivery of goods. Which at times, convenience outweighs saving. A saving of 20-30 dollars with the stipulation of + 2weeks wait compared to buying it at your leisure for 80 is not always a clear cut issue.

Hopefully we will see prices coming down in answer to this, because yes there are alternatives, but Im tired of being denied convenience.

And I really really hope Microsoft gets called to account on their XBL practices. A live membership and Microsoft Points are ridiculously out of sync with the US.

This is ultimately a question of price vs. worth. The worth is the same in the US, UK and Australia, generally speaking. But one of the important rules of business is not to sell a thing for what it is worth, but for whatever the consumer is willing to pay.

Apple epitomise this rule, selling 30 hardware made in a Chinese sweat shop for 300. The fact is that Aussies have been conditioned to accept these prices as "normal", as the going-rate. To be honest, kudos to govmt. for calling those 3 out, though to be honest there's a lot of others.

I can understand that some things must be more expensive in Oz because of the cost of importing. Something like a large, LED/plasma TV for example will cost a lot of money to transport. The same will go for anything physical that gets imported.

As an interesting, indirectly related factoid: Kiwi fruit cost more to transport in airline fuel than they sell for.

 

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