We have been enjoying what is now the regular price for a AAA game for a while. That USD, 60 dollar mark, has been with us since for over two generations now, which is now almost two decades. After so much economic turmoil in the globe, is there a possibility of this changing soon? This upcoming generation is talking about real 4K and even 8K content playback, meaning increasingly demanding development cycles. Will game prices remain the same during next-gen?
There are so many sanctions and tariffs being changed all around the world lately that’s hard to keep up with it. With US and Chinese relationships in fierce negotiation, tech business is almost sure to get hit by this. Recently, Nintendo, Microsoft, and Sony teamed up against tariffs proposed for the videogame industry. All this is still up in the air but will dramatically affect the overall pricing structure for gaming hardware. If hardware becomes too expensive, there are changes that software will rise in cost to ease the blow for hardware manufacturers.
True, these scenarios are complex and determining how it will finally hit prices is complicated. Still, it is a bleak panorama, and you know it is serious when all the major players in the industry are joining forces to go against tariffs that might affect gaming.
Just to grasp a little more on the reality of this tariffs, this is an excerpt of the letter Nintendo, Microsoft and Sony sent to The Office of the United States Trade Representatives:
“In particular, tariffs on video game consoles would:
• Injure consumers, video game developers, retailers, and console manufacturers;
• Put thousands of high-value, rewarding U.S. jobs at risk; and
• Stifle innovation in our industry and beyond.
While we appreciate the Administration’s efforts to protect U.S. intellectual property and preserve U.S. high-tech leadership, the disproportionate harm caused by these tariffs to U.S. consumers and businesses will undermine—not advance—these goals. Accordingly, we respectfully request that the Administration remove HTSUS subheading 9504.50.00, covering video game consoles, from the final list of tariffs, and thus refrain from applying tariffs on these products.”
This generation is trying to make a big leap, technologically speaking. Every time Sony or Microsoft reveals a bit of their upcoming consoles, they have one thing in common. The hardware needed to comply with those promises is not cheap to produce. Both machines are aiming to get the most recent technology according to AMD. Having the best that AMD has at the moment is not going to be cheap, and, it is a known fact that most consoles don’t make an initial profit at launch due to manufacturing costs. Software sales are the driving force of the industry. Game prices might be affected by these factors.
In addition to this, the games that are going to run in these machines, at those resolutions and framerate will require more expensive development. This will most likely result in lengthier development cycles and the need for additional manpower. Meaning that not only companies that manufacture hardware, but also publishers and developers alike might be affected by this rising cost of development. Along with possible increased licensing fees from hardware manufacturers.
Hopefully, all this will find its course without affecting the pricing structure we enjoy today. Would you still buy a game if it was $70 instead of $60? Or would you wait for a sale? Let us know in the comments below!
If you’re worried about prices, don’t worry right now! Steam Summer Sale is here, check out all the details.