Microsoft will maintain a $60 price tag for first party software.
Sony won a significant public relations victory at its E3 press conference. In addition to excluding always online and used games restrictions a la Xbox One, the PS4 was announced to cost a hundred dollars less than Microsoft’s console. That said, Microsoft may now have a chance for a bit of a counter when it comes to the pricing of games. Whereas Sony is largely staying mum on the cost of next-gen games, Microsoft has revealed that its first party software for Xbox One will be priced the same as on the Xbox 360: $59.99 a game.
Microsoft’s pricing announcement comes alongside what could be taken as reluctance from Sony to confirm its own software prices. While PlayStation boss Jack Tretton had previously said PS4 games would cost “from 99 cents to $60,” Shuhei Yoshida, head of worldwide game development for Sony, wouldn’t confirm prices when asked recently. While he said that he “[knows] the pricing,” he wouldn’t offer a solid number.
Yoshida’s reluctance to solidify first party pricing could amount to nothing, but it’s hard not to worry that Sony might raise its prices in the future. There would be arguably legitimate reasons for doing so. Based on current inflation rates, videogames are already cheaper than they were at the launch of the PS3. Additionally, the cost of making games continues to rise and Yoshida confirmed that PS4 development costs would be “slightly larger” when compared to current generation software. The only real reason Sony has not to boost its prices is consumer backlash. Given its recent trend of people pleasing, that might be enough. That said, only time will tell.