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Topic: Will expensive Switch carts mean early end of bargain priced game shelves at the end of the Switch lifespan?

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Woomy_NNYes

I needed a new 3ds game by this weekend, and that's what spurred my question. I thought, for sure, there would be 3DS game sale racks for the holiday, but stores have zero, or close to zero stock, of new 3DS games. I know 3DS store space was slashed last spring, and I know Nintendo has focused on the switch, and this could be the main reason stores don't have stock of new 3DS games, but I couldn't help wonder if costly-cartridge-production could have played a role.

Historically, if a Playstation / Xbox console ended when the 3DS ended, I think there would still be an abundance of sale racks for popular bargain priced games for the holiday season. I thought maybe that could be because disks are so cheap to produce. So, I can't help wonder if higher-Switch-cartridge-costs will mean less games produced later in the console life, and an early end to bargain sale racks for games.

-I know cartridge prices will continue to drop, but I find it hard to believe cart production costs will ever come close to being as cheap as disks.

Edited on by Woomy_NNYes

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Silly_G

Since last generation, I think publishers have generally been more calculated in how they approach physical releases.

There have been tons of unsold (unsellable?) DS/Wii titles presumably due to enthusiastic publishers wanting to bank on the large customer base for both platforms, and publishers don't want unsold units eating into their bottom line, and having to hawk them off for $5 or $2 (I once bought a brand-new Wii game for AU$0.50!), if not dispose of them entirely!

I think lower-capacity cartridges would already cost about the same (if not less) than a Blu-ray, but I don't know what the costs are from an industry point of view, so it's hard to really say or compare the two formats.

Also, discs for professional releases are pressed not burned, which is a totally different process, and pressing results in a superior (and longer-lasting) disc which is cheaper and faster to replicate in commercial quantities.

Edited on by Silly_G

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SwitchForce

Everything goes down in time but Carts for popular games will not as much. That's what the market will do. As to Disc those are harder to store and less appealing when you play on the go just bump the device and the game glitches or freezes. A cart won't that since it uses tech like a SSD or NVMe device insuring no moving parts to glitch or freezes when bumped.

SwitchForce

Woomy_NNYes

@SwitchForce Absolutely, that's why we love carts over disks. But after cart cost comes down, as long as the cost is higher than making bluray disks, I'm theorizing that it's potentially a disincentive to make a run of games for a bargain game shelf, or an extra run of games at the end of the Switch's life.

The scarcity of new 3ds carts seemed to come quicker than i expected. It's a smart plan to move people to the Switch & Switch Lite, but i couldn't help wonder if cart cost played a role.

Edited on by Woomy_NNYes

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Mountain_Man

Used is where it's at with the 3DS these days. You can buy any game in its catalog for dirt cheap from the used bin.

The Mountain Man

SwitchForce

@Woomy_NNYes All too true for the 2SD/3DS carts but I for one have like close to 300 game about half each for the formats of either 2or3 models. And some are games I will not sell as they are have extras in them including the Pokemon versions. One has to pay me alot to let those go, I don't get around much to those as I like since the Switch release but I still will keep them. Well both 2/3DS and Switch are proprietary carts and IP protection as well so I can see why they went that route. But a plus is they are SSD card design so that helps storage and sales in one way or another. And this prevents clones and IP ripoff as well. Gaming company have to protect their investments but also design in a way that buyers can agree to even if it cost more. To me I figure this was akin to Sony Memory Card but the thing about the carts is your not "TIED to Account that Downloaded" the game that to me is the biggest string attachment I dislike alot. Just like Nicalis takedown of their Digital game-this is the worst fear come true as alot of us Physical cohorts been telling but no one would believe us. Also Physical you can take and use in another Switch or "retired" 2/3DS carts and not have to worry oh must I transfer my account to this to play and as in Switch your allowed only one account user per Switch. That to me shouldn't even be something they do if they really want player to play more. Sure we will have those HomeBrew trying to get past this but the Majority could care less we want a Game, fire it up and go and have some fun/entertainment. That to me is more important and also Homebrew provides you no "Insurance" should they fry your Switch-Think about that HomeBrew users have you gotten a legal documentation they will pay or replace your Switch for their "Cost". I doubt they would even entertain that if you asked them let alone that would put them into Legal Jeopardy of IP Violation/EULA violation as well.

SwitchForce

Grumblevolcano

@Woomy_NNYes Well it's about to what extent a console has stopped being supported. After Nintendo released their last 3DS game (Kirby's Extra Epic Yarn) in March, the only notable physical release afterwards was Persona Q2 in June. This combined with 3DS games not being playable on a newer console means there's not much reason for retailers to stock 3DS games. Meanwhile with Playstation and Xbox, there's usually some big 3rd party games released like yearly FIFA games after the first parties have stopped supporting it (e.g. FIFA 20 was the first FIFA game that didn't come to Xbox 360 and PS3).

Backwards compatibility is also a factor. Wii games played on Wii U, DS games played on 3DS, some Xbox 360 games plays on Xbox One, etc. meanwhile Switch is a complete start from scratch. Nothing that you bought from Wii U or 3DS transfers over to Switch so once already existing Wii U and 3DS game stock is gone, there not much reason for retailers to get more. Meanwhile Sony and Microsoft have already announced backwards compatibility for PS5 and Xbox Scarlett so PS4 and Xbox One games will be around for a while after the new consoles launch next year.

Grumblevolcano

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SwitchForce

Grumblevolcano wrote:

@Woomy_NNYes Well it's about to what extent a console has stopped being supported.

Look no farther then Sony stating no more Support for Vita.

Grumblevolcano wrote:

After Nintendo released their last 3DS game (Kirby's Extra Epic Yarn) in March, the only notable physical release afterwards was Persona Q2 in June. This combined with 3DS games not being playable on a newer console means there's not much reason for retailers to stock 3DS games.

Eventually hardware become dated and you can't just keep going with the Old when Nintendo wanted to change the gaming scape so they could Dock and go Portable. That would the the natural evolution of the Switch coming into this gaming sphere. So I can't fault them for deciding this. Gaming isn't a easy industry to break into nor bring new Hardware and expect it to takeoff like the Switch. This was a revolution and innovation with big Risk that is paying off for them now.

Grumblevolcano wrote:

Meanwhile with Playstation and Xbox, there's usually some big 3rd party games released like yearly FIFA games after the first parties have stopped supporting it (e.g. FIFA 20 was the first FIFA game that didn't come to Xbox 360 and PS3).

I just wonder how long those 3rd party will keep support on one time a year game when they could invest their Development software money on making new games to get to more audiences.

Grumblevolcano wrote:

Backwards compatibility is also a factor. Wii games played on Wii U, DS games played on 3DS, some Xbox 360 games plays on Xbox One, etc. meanwhile Switch is a complete start from scratch. Nothing that you bought from Wii U or 3DS transfers over to Switch so once already existing Wii U and 3DS game stock is gone, there not much reason for retailers to get more.

It is and it is not. With the new Start they can redo the Gaming scene to their favor and move development in a different direction with both worlds Wii controls aka JoyCons and 2/3DS aka cartridge tech into one Tech that can Dock and go Portable. This is what probably what they wanted and was aiming for in their new Hardware so that they didn't have to support so many Hardware but just focus on One and aim that for the High Road. And as of March 2017, it has worked in their Success.

Grumblevolcano wrote:

Meanwhile Sony and Microsoft have already announced backwards compatibility for PS5 and Xbox Scarlett so PS4 and Xbox One games will be around for a while after the new consoles launch next year.

This is good to have but there is a big factor as things gets older supports start to fall off that is just how tech goes. Keep support and the cost goes up for older and older hardware that isn't something that can't be written off-when share holder ask how profitable are you?

Problem here is hypcritcal..then why buy ps4,scarlett. Buying those won't improve graphics that much nor gameplay. So then they should stay at ps4, xboxX, if this line of thinking is used then. You might get a slight boost but in the end you can't change what it was then to something it isn't.

Edited on by SwitchForce

SwitchForce

Woomy_NNYes

@SwitchForce regarding xbox scarlett backward compatibility; in spite of the cost, Phil Spencer knows that other gamers want backward compatibility, and he pushed for it, even though corporate heads weren't into it. So, as of now, xbox scarlett will have backward compatibility. -saw this in an interview, I think, in a spawn wave video within the past week.
(edit: my comment here was real wordy, so I slimmed it down.)

Edited on by Woomy_NNYes

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SwitchForce

@Woomy_NNYes nothing wrong with that but you have to ask your financial backers is that what they want. It takes Financial backers to make projects happen - game making isn't easy nor does it get done in a timely development timeframe. Unfortunatly xbox is a Microsoft project and with their Wealth can't seem to get it off the ground shows lack of Support from within their own circles tells alot. And forget about Google scarlett Online gaming - this only is good as your internet or ISP throttle should you go over your limits or wifi locations blocking your using their wifi.

SwitchForce

HobbitGamer

I think I just got a concussion trying to follow that.

I don't think we'll again see the large bargain bins of cheap games that I remember. Mostly because, as @Silly_G alluded to, publishers and sellers are in an increasingly tighter race between competitors over things like cost and sell through. All those games ended up in a bargain bin because it was a smaller loss than using the shelf space which could be filled by better performing product. With video games, the average profit of a new $60 title is only $5-$9. Profit margins get razor thin even quicker depending on the seller. Every square foot's display of products in brick retail stores is decided on by a dollar per foot ratio, and a warehouse for online retailers is similar in concept. Ever notice in a store that some games are displayed fully, while some are relegated to the spine treatment, and not necessarily in an alphabetical logic? It's more profitable that way. The spine-shelved games are the new 'bargain bin' in terms of how a retailer sees it.

I don't think we'll see bargain bins again, and based on the items in them, I'm not upset over that idea.

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link3710

If I remember correctly, a couple years ago insiders were saying an 8GB Switch cartridge was equivalent in price to the larger Blu-Ray discs. It was the 16s and 32s that had a serious bite in terms of price. Given what we've been seeing with Switch tax basically having vanished, and 32s starting to come into use, by the end of the Switch's lifespan the majority of titles will probably have cartridge costs below that of discs for other consoles. So I doubt that's the reason you won't see new titles at ends of life, better stock management seems like a more likely issue you'd face. Also, large capacity games (such as Witcher 3) are definitely going to have semi-limited runs.

link3710

Silly_G

@link3710 : Incidentally, the PS5 will be using Ultra HD Blu-ray discs, which come in 66GB and 100GB capacities. They also have more bandwidth, but whether any games will be playable directly from the disc remains to be seen.

I imagine that smaller games (which would fall in the majority) would still use single-layer 25GB discs. I believe that there are 50GB UHD discs as well (as opposed to the regular 50GB dual-layer Blu-rays) which would be necessary to be able to smoothly play UHD content on a lower-capacity disc, but I strongly doubt that they will be used for games considering that most, if not all, will require installation, and so the use of a more expensive disc would be unnecessary.

Edited on by Silly_G

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link3710

@Silly_G Huh, so that means we might be seeing full equality all around in terms of game costs, or possibly Nintendo actually becoming the cheaper option for big name titles. Intriguing.

link3710

sixrings

Since they make less physical than they used to theres less on the shelves and less traded in which means supply and demand and used games cost more and what hasn't sold will have a collector's market.

sixrings

SwitchForce

Silly_G wrote:

@link3710 : Incidentally, the PS5 will be using Ultra HD Blu-ray discs, which come in 66GB and 100GB capacities. They also have more bandwidth, but whether any games will be playable directly from the disc remains to be seen..

That's not necessary true here. Those drives are still Sata connection limited. If it was a cart like NVMe drive that would be different. But sadly Sony lost track of tech evolution and continue to used outdated connection speeds. If they made a NVMe type game I can see them moving into the 25 century but they are still attached to Sata tech for their drives. Having SSD storage drive is good but the games should come on NVMe formats with ability to update on the NVMe drive that would improve access time and load time far beyond a BD drive as the game will still be loaded from the drive but from a NVMe drive that would be light speed for them.

SwitchForce

Woomy_NNYes

sixrings wrote:

Since they make less physical than they used to theres less on the shelves and less traded in which means supply and demand and used games cost more and what hasn't sold will have a collector's market.

Oh, man. I didn't even think of the fact that more people are buying digitial regarding the this thread topic. Or for whatever reason, it hadn't registered. How did I not think of that? You're so smart @sixrings. -not sarcasm

Edited on by Woomy_NNYes

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HobbitGamer

SwitchForce wrote:

. But sadly Sony lost track of tech evolution and continue to used outdated connection speeds. If they made a NVMe type game I can see them moving into the 25 century but they are still attached to Sata tech for their drives.

Not even the 22nd century yet...

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