According to a report in the Investor's Business Daily, discussions over pricing of next-generation console games are starting to solidify, with Activision CEO Robert Kotick commenting that the company intends to raise its wholesale prices by $10 for next-generation console software, largely due to the increasing costs of next-gen development.
"We haven't raised prices as an industry in 20 years," Kotick mused in the piece. "Look at the movie business as an analogy. You're not getting any more hours of entertainment -- it's the same two hours of a motion picture -- and yet you're spending twice as much as you did 10 years ago."
If the wholesale increase is passed on to consumers by the retailer, which is extremely likely, then this change would see next-gen console software selling at $54.99 or more likely $59.99. Current generation console games have only sold for this much when bundled with extra hardware (in the case of SOCOM
and its headset), or in special edition box set versions.
Other major publishers have been reluctant to speculate on software prices for the launch of the next-generation Xbox, likely to be during 2005 in North America, and 2006 or later for Sony and Nintendo's next consoles.
It is, however, noticeable that Sony's PSP has brought price inflation to the handheld market, presumably also related to development cost, with Nintendo GBA/DS games retailing at $29.99 to $34.99, but some U.S. launch PSP games, including Need for Speed Underground Rivals
and Dynasty Warriors
, to cost $49.99, and even more rudimentary puzzle games like Lumines