Wii U Forum

Topic: Wii U Games $49.99 USD?

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skywake

81. Posted:

Well I think there's some price between $60US and $100AU which is probably where it should be. I am also pretty damn sure that retail competition, or lack of, isn't the reason why there's a gap between prices across different regions. I also don't think that there is a very good argument at all for digital copies to be at RRP rather than at some point between RRP and RRP minus retail and distribution costs.

Pricing is hard because it's more or less one price for the whole thing rather than individual items.... but I don't think what is effectively protectionism put up by the sellers of these products is a good thing for anyone involved.

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Sean_Aaron

82. Posted:

The only way I can see this reasonably getting sorted would be to have %100 digital distribution and a global rights clearinghouse and ratings board. Pricing should then be totally transparent to the end user and we would hopefully see the price be the same in every country - heck you could have local language versions available with an optional surcharge with a dub/sub add-on.

But like you say the price does seem kind of arbritrary. In this regard it's different from film because nowadays movie companies don't own theatres, so they don't set ticket prices. They do have something to say about prices charged for online distribution however and then you can see that price varies pretty widely with HD versions of films going for £9.99-15.99 and DVD-quality downloads going for under a fiver up to ten quid. Of course I don't know at what point the studio makes a return. If movie theatres died overnight I expect the price of a video download would increase substantially to offset that loss of income; it already costs more than going to film without the addition of popcorn, etc.

It does sound like Australia might be getting a raw deal, but without knowing what it costs to set up a distribution arm there (including local servers for downloads) and whether or not game publishers spread the cost throughout various territories, I honestly don't know if it's fair or not. I do know that Australia is a pretty remote place and if I was publishing my own physical product, I'd need to know I had an audience of some kind before I paid the shipping costs to send stuff out there. I guess the question is, how many of the physical games sold in Australia are manufactured there and is that cost significant enough to justify the price. If titles are shipped there, ditto for transport and whatever local distribution costs. With regard to digital downloads we'd want to know whether servers are local and how much that costs to maintain versus the size of the local marketplace. The fact is that unless sales in Australia are on par with those in the USA or the UK, I'd expect games to cost more just because the audience is smaller, but again, I hold my hand up in ignorance to what the marketplace is there.

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DoodleJohn

83. Posted:

$50 for a Wii U game sounds good. I mean, I'd pay $50 for Pikmin 3. Heck, I payed $60 for Pikmin 2 on eBay.

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Bankai

84. Posted:

It does sound like Australia might be getting a raw deal, but without knowing what it costs to set up a distribution arm there (including local servers for downloads) and whether or not game publishers spread the cost throughout various territories, I honestly don't know if it's fair or not. I do know that Australia is a pretty remote place and if I was publishing my own physical product, I'd need to know I had an audience of some kind before I paid the shipping costs to send stuff out there. I guess the question is, how many of the physical games sold in Australia are manufactured there and is that cost significant enough to justify the price. If titles are shipped there, ditto for transport and whatever local distribution costs. With regard to digital downloads we'd want to know whether servers are local and how much that costs to maintain versus the size of the local marketplace. The fact is that unless sales in Australia are on par with those in the USA or the UK, I'd expect games to cost more just because the audience is smaller, but again, I hold my hand up in ignorance to what the marketplace is there.

For the most part Australia is serviced from servers outside of Australia. I believe Nintendo eShop is serviced out of the UK.

Then again Mario Tennis is restricted ot A/NZ here so perhaps we do have local servers...

But, even that aside, people don't seem to realise that digital downloads doesn't mean the people running the Australian companies are suddently downloaded from the US as well. Australian wages are high - much higher than in the US - as is property cost. No one wants to lose their services and support to the US, but fewer copies of games are sold in Australia compared to any other developed market. So guess what? It means stuff is more expensive. The Australian wages aren't paid for out of the US. They're paid for out of the Australian sales.

Even more so if the logistics (and you're right, logistics is expensive when you've got a massive country and very small cities to ship to) become involved. Physical products are a pain to distribute in Australia.

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skywake

85. Posted:

All I can say is that it doesn't cost $40 more to ship a disk to Australia and you can be sure that they'll be shipping it if it costs more to print it here (and we know they do for small games because we get EU boxes with AU rating stickers on the front). It doesn't cost $40 more to send 10GB of data across the Pacific than it does to download from a server in the US from within the US and you can be sure that they'll be hosting it in the US if it costs more to host it here. So higher costs? Sure. $40 more?

I highly doubt it even if purely from personal experience in doing these things not-in-bulk and privately. I pay $50AU/mo for 200GB and shipping single items to Australia is a few dollars. Both are cheaper per unit in bulk. I could go to Play Asia and buy the US copy of Mario Tennis and have it shipped here as an individual item for $5 less than the cheapest price in the shops here and $20 less than the most expensive and that's with Play Asia.

Just a quick look, Pokemon Black/White sold 250k copies in AU/NZ so given that sold 14mill globally presumably we're ~1.8% of global sales, yes? So a million seller (which is pretty modest sales globally) will sell ~18k here. So at upto $40 extra per game unless there's something like classification in Australia that cost $720k per game I don't think the price is really justified.

Edited on by skywake

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Bankai

86. Posted:

250,000 x $10 (roughly what I would expect total profit margin to be in Australia at the moment, after import, distribution, marketing, legal, service and retail costs) = $2.5 million.

Let's say Wikipedia is right and Nintendo Australia has 97 employees. Let's pretend that the average wage of Nintendo Australia = the average Australian wage (it's likely to be much more, since most of the people at Nintendo Australia would be White-collar administrative positions.

97 x $61165 = $5.9 million, rounded. See where I'm going next?

That doesn't include the cost of Nintendo's offices, power bills, travel costs, printing (a surprisingly expensive piece of the corporate office pie), taxes and all those other good things.

I've said it a million times now but you refuse to acknowledge it because it ruins your argument - it is expensive doing business in Australia. Whether a game is delivered digitally or in hard copy is utterly irrelevant. Nintendo still needs to pay the wages of a medium sized business to stay operational in Australia, and it's doing so in a market that doesn't exactly buy in bulk. The smaller the market the higher the costs to sell into that market. Economic fact.

Want an even more extreme example? Look at Brazil or South Africa. They have tiny, tiny games markets, and they pay a lot more than we do in Australia for that reason.

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kkslider5552000

87. Posted:

tl;dr, but Australia's fault right? Or are you still blaming gamers for companies dying instead of terrible management? Just wondering. Just a yes or two or no, I don't need anything else really.

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Bankai

88. Posted:

kkslider5552000 wrote:

tl;dr, but Australia's fault right? Or are you still blaming gamers for companies dying instead of terrible management? Just wondering. Just a yes or two or no, I don't need anything else really.

You know what. You want to keep being all Mr. Sarcasm? Fine, I'll call you on it.

Show me financial proof that a single game company out there is mismanaged. Why with all your expert knowledge and superior intellect to everyone else, I'm surprised Capcom haven't already given you CEO job.

At least Skywake's able to put together a reasoned argument for his position.

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skywake

89. Posted:

@Choco

How many games do they sell in an average year then? How many consoles? How much do Nintendo make from royalties on their games? You have to take all of that into account. Lets go back to that image from page 1

Untitled

Let me make some assumptions I think are pretty conservative for my argument:

  • Same $12 goes to the console maker (overseas)
  • Same $9 goes to the developer (overseas)
  • BigW isn't losing money with Max Payne 3 (random game) at $74 and so EBs are making at least $24 (double they do in the US) when they sell it at the $98 RRP
  • Nintendo wants to sell their games online at the RRP

So $46 between marketing and the publisher which is $27 in the US. An extra $19 but for what? The higher cost of wages for Nintendo of Australia employees compared to Nintendo of America? The extra cost of the TV spots in Australia per potential customer in our concentrated media landscape? I don't think it adds up. They have to be making more money out of Australians because you can't explain that gap with wages or logistics.

More likely BigW are getting something along the lines of $10 when they sell it at ~$75 which means that there's only an extra $5 to make up for. It's much easier to argue that the $5 extra is for all of these "Australia costs more" reasons. But then you say that the retail and downloadable copies should both be at RRP. That would be fine if it was the US where it's maybe an extra $20 for console maker and developer but if you did that in Australia it's $40 or so extra which I think is getting a little bit excessive.

Edited on by skywake

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Bankai

90. Posted:

skywake wrote:

@Choco

How many games do they sell in an average year then? How many consoles? How much do Nintendo make from royalties on their games? You have to take all of that into account. Lets go back to that image from page 1

[/div]

With any luck enough to make a healthy total profit in total from all the games. There wouldn't be so many games companies going bankrupt if the pricing was fair. But then consumers never think about how a price should be fair for a publisher as well. All they care about is themselves, exposing the greatest flaw in modern capitalism - it's become a one way conversation

Untitled

Let me make some assumptions I think are pretty conservative for my argument:

  • Same $12 goes to the console maker (overseas)
  • Same $9 goes to the developer (overseas)
  • BigW isn't losing money with Max Payne 3 (random game) at $74 and so EBs are making at least $24 (double they do in the US) when they sell it at the $98 RRP
  • Nintendo wants to sell their games online at the RRP

So $46 between marketing and the publisher which is $27 in the US. An extra $19 but for what? The higher cost of wages for Nintendo of Australia employees compared to Nintendo of America? The extra cost of the TV spots in Australia per potential customer in our concentrated media landscape? I don't think it adds up. They have to be making more money out of Australians because you can't explain that gap with wages or logistics.

More likely BigW are getting something along the lines of $10 when they sell it at ~$75 which means that there's only an extra $5 to make up for. It's much easier to argue that the $5 extra is for all of these "Australia costs more" reasons. But then you say that the retail and downloadable copies should both be at RRP. That would be fine if it was the US where it's maybe an extra $20 for console maker and developer but if you did that in Australia it's $40 or so extra which I think is getting a little bit excessive.

I don't know how to say this in any other way. We pay a fair price in Australia, they pay too little in the US consumers might not like it, but the reality is that the current state of the industry is clearly not sustainable. What looks like "gouging" to you isn't really - it's simply the producers charging the right price because the Australian market can sustain it.

And whether certain people want to believe it or not, that's not because every single business that makes games is run by incompetent people.

Edited on by Bankai

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Jamouse

91. Posted:

you guys are still arguing -___-

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kkslider5552000

92. Posted:

ChocoGoldfish wrote:

kkslider5552000 wrote:

tl;dr, but Australia's fault right? Or are you still blaming gamers for companies dying instead of terrible management? Just wondering. Just a yes or two or no, I don't need anything else really.

You know what. You want to keep being all Mr. Sarcasm? Fine, I'll call you on it.

Show me financial proof that a single game company out there is mismanaged. Why with all your expert knowledge and superior intellect to everyone else, I'm surprised Capcom haven't already given you CEO job.

I could post the obvious kettle image but meh.

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skywake

93. Posted:

@Choco

I think you missed my change in tone in that last post. BigW are selling games for $74 that have a RRP of $69 in the US and a RRP of $99 here.

I doubt that the higher price we pay here is going towards a fairer price to distributors or developers. I don't think that the higher price is explained by higher wages here or higher costs of server space or distribution or anything like that. If that was the case these "slashed" and "sale" prices we've been seeing would be loss leaders and accessory/console pushers rather than seemingly regular prices for new release games (Max Payne 3) on well established consoles (360). So there's something amiss there and it seems like retailers are the only winners.......... but then Nintendo comes out and says "don't worry, we don't want to de-value our games or worry retailers so we'll be selling our downloadable games at RRP". That's fine for the US but here that seems ridiculous unless there's a change in the RRP. Make the RRP something like $75AU and get it over with, there is no reason why it should be higher.

and BTW, individuals being selfish with their money isn't the "greatest flaw in modern capitalism" it's the entire point of capitalism. That's how it works. It has it's flaws, some things lack a price and there are "forest canopy" scenarios, but competition reducing prices ain't one of them. If one shop is selling a game for $98 and the guy down the road is selling it for $74 I'm not going to pay $98 because that's the "fair price". If there's a download option which cuts out the retail and distribution and is maybe cheaper again at maybe $65AU I might go with that instead. That's not a broken system, that's the system at work.

Edited on by skywake

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BenAV

94. Posted:

Unfortunately I don't really have the money to buy all the games I want at $100 each, but I still do for games I really want.
If I don't mind waiting a while though, the UK is the solution to all my problems because it's usually so much cheaper to buy from there.

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Jr-Joe

95. Posted:

Wii U game prices have been updated on amazon, they're now $59.99 and available for pre-order(don't know if they were before).

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Wheels2050

96. Posted:

skywake wrote:

BigW isn't losing money with Max Payne 3 (random game) at $74

I don't know for certain, but I've been told many times that the big department stores (Big W and Kmart - I don't think Target sells new games that cheaply) ARE actually losing money at that price. However, being such large stores, they use them as loss leaders in the hope that people will buy extra stuff from them on which they do make a profit.

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CanisWolfred

97. Posted:

207KD wrote:

Wii U game prices have been updated on amazon, they're now $59.99 and available for pre-order(don't know if they were before).

Thank you for the info, man. Glad to see this has finally been settled.

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Gamerman501

98. Posted:

i hope the wii U will be priced at about 130$ at launch day.

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Odnetnin

99. Posted:

Gamerman501 wrote:

i hope the wii U will be priced at about 130$ at launch day.

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kyuubikid213

100. Posted:

If the Wii U would actually price games at $49.99, that would be good for the system. It would be a full $10 cheaper than a new PS3/360 game, but just as expensive as a new Wii game. However, I think Wii U games will end up being $60 a piece. It only seems logical.

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