Electronic Arts CEO John Riccitiello says the advent of the third dimension in gaming could lead the way to higher prices for “premium” 3D games.
Avatar rocked my socks off. The story may have been puerile but the 3D effects were absolutely mind-blowing and as I watched, there was no doubt in my mind that I was looking at the future of cinema. Could it be the future of gaming, too? If so, you might want to brace yourself for higher prices once we get there.
“3D may well be one of the next and most important drivers for growth. [That’s] yet to be seen and I don’t think it’s a 2010 story in any way, shape or form… in a meaningful way,” Riccitiello said at an “executives breakfast” at E3. “But as we move through 2011, 2012, its likely to be an opportunity both for additional growth and perhaps premium pricing for titles that better support 3D.”
Game pricing is always a dicey issue. On one hand, new game releases are already pretty pricey and there’s a natural tendency among consumers to recoil at the mere mention of higher costs; on the other, the collector’s edition of Dragon Age: Origins originally listed at $69.99 while The Bard’s Tale sold for $76.95 in 1985, so it’s not as though the industry has been clobbering us with outrageous price hikes. Could 3D be the engine that finally drives us to a world of $100 games?