Square Enix is still struggling with the whole iOS pricing thing.
Like most of Square Enix’s iOS games, Demons’ Score is priced well above its app store peers. In Japan the game costs a hefty $19.99, but the North American and international versions cost just $6.99. That sounds like a good deal for gamers outside of Japan, right? It isn’t.
See, Demons’ Score, which is yet another rhythm-RPG hybrid, has multiple stages and boss fights, but the main crux of the gameplay is unlocking different songs. In the North American and international versions, all of those songs are tied to “sexy” character outfits which are sold as DLC packs that cost $2.99 a pop. The total cost of unlocking everything included in the $19.99 Japanese version of Demons’ Score is forty dollars. Western gamers are paying nearly twice as much for the same amount of content, and then there’s the hassle of selecting and downloading each bit of DLC.
The game itself is developed by iNIS, of Ouendan and Elite Beat Agents fame, and judging by the trailer, it actually looks pretty good. I’m all for iOS developers exploring higher price ranges in exchange for higher quality games – another Square Enix title, The World Ends With You, is both the most expensive and best iOS game I’ve bought thus far – but $47 for a mobile game that’s available for less than half that price in Japan? I think not, Square Enix.