News Article

Iwata Defends Identical Digital and Retail Prices

Posted by James Newton

Value perception is key

When retail games hit the 3DS eShop in August, they'll cost around the same as they do in stores, a practice many believe is counter-intuitive: without the costs of physical manufacturing and distribution, digital games sidestep many costs. But Nintendo president Satoru Iwata disagrees, claiming download games have a different value: having them with you at all times.

Iwata spoke to investors about the decision to set the same suggested retail price (SRP) for retail games, whether bought in stores or downloaded. Defending the software's inherent value, Iwata said:

Different people value different things. If we said, “This is the only proposal we will make so you have to take it,” it would be a problem as there would be no options for the consumers to choose from. On the contrary, what I explained today is that we are proposing the two formats of sales mechanisms from which our consumers can make their own choices. The needs of society shall be determined by the choices to be made by the consumers.

It's not just Nintendo management that feels this way — Iwata says other software publishers have told him their thoughts on the matter, with vastly differing opinions:

We do not hold such a premise that digitally distributed software has less value. In fact, as we have discussed this with a number of software publishers around the world, we have found that their opinions are completely divided on the topic of the price points of the digital distribution of packaged software. Some publishers believe that the digital versions should be cheaper while others insist that both versions must be set at exactly the same price. So, it is not only Nintendo’s idea. Each publisher has various ideas on this point and, among them, Nintendo is now offering both versions at the same price point (the same suggested retail price).

Retailers will still be able to set the prices for the digital games they sell in-store via redeem codes — a system similar to that implemented by Game and GameStop around the world — but Nintendo's official stance is a game shouldn't cost you any less just because it's a download.

[via nintendo.co.jp]

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User Comments (103)

Squiggle55

#1

Squiggle55 said:

He is certainly correct when he says "The needs of society shall be determined by the choices to be made by the consumers." It's their right to price something as they see fit. It is clearly the consumers choice whether they think a digital download should cost the same. I just think it's a bad idea and won't lead to the type of digital sales/impulse buying that they could get with a more logical price drop.
But he is dead wrong that a digital game has the same "value".

LEGEND_MARIOID

#2

LEGEND_MARIOID said:

There is the desire for many people to want to have software downloaded onto a single platform rather than have several carts or discs on their shelves.

However, if prices aren't lower, I really can't see digital downloads taking off and selling in large quantities. I'd only really download if a great game was significantly lower in price

Alienfish

#3

Alienfish said:

Oh, really? Then why don't they give us free HDD's to go with the new system? In the case of downloaded games, it's the hard drive that takes the place of the game disc, so if they charge us the same amount for something we must all pay to support, then we are in fact paying more for it since we are providing the means of storage. Bad Iwata! Bad!

Geonjaha

#5

Geonjaha said:

Well I'm sorry he feels that way. I wont be downloading anything.
I mean, come on - the advantage is I dont have to switch game cards...but...
All my games would be on one system (more costly if I lose/break it), I cant possibly ever use it on another system, resell it, lend it to someone, share it, etc. Also it takes up space on my 3DS that I plan to keep for eShop downloads, and thus limits me there. I'd be paying the same price for less since I dont get the physical material with it as well.

With great cases that you can now buy for low prices, transporting games around isnt a problem. The only issue becomes turning off a system and changing the game card, and if you REALLY want to sacrifice all I mentioned for THAT...well...there are no words.

ChosenOne25

#6

ChosenOne25 said:

I don't see why people are complaining about this. The download prices need to be the same as the retail version for more than just the reason he listed. Especially to keep retailer business alive, this needed to be done. As he Iwata said, Nintendo is giving you the option to choose your medium now, you should be thankful not hateful.

Chris720

#8

Chris720 said:

I don't really care as long as we get discounts every week, if not Iwata is doing it wrong.

Yrreiht

#9

Yrreiht said:

eh, i don't mind actually, either you have loads of cartridges or all your games inside your system. the only game i plan to download is Smash bros anyway....

HanuKwanzMasBif

#10

HanuKwanzMasBif said:

Carts are so small I carry 'em with me. Changing discs is no problem, since you can only play at one place with your system.
So if you choose download, you just spend more money on external memory... plus the inconvenience of having to write down what games are on what SD cards/whatever if you buy a lot of games for download.

Alienfish wrote:

Bad Iwata! Bad!

Highwinter

#11

Highwinter said:

@ChosenOne25 A lot of people will buy from retailers regardless. Some aren't tech savvy enough to know how to buy things digitally or simply prefer getting a physical box and instruction manual to use.

If digital games cost the same, what advantage is there?

WaLzgiStaff

#15

WaLzgi said:

Plus no one really knows how much cheaper it is to create carts vs. downloads. The company still needs to pay for distribution costs and the servers' maintenance.

@Alienfish: If you don't like it, don't buy it. If you read Iwata's statement, you should understand that :P

Victoria

#16

Victoria said:

In that case I'd rather buy the retail version as I'm keeping the shop open and keeping someone employed. And when I finish a game and find I will never play it again, I can sell it on (or even GIVE it away) so someone else can enjoy it.

JayceJa

#17

JayceJa said:

if i wanted a soft copy, it wouldnt be for a tiny price drop, itd be for the advantage of not needing the hard copy

this isnt like a computer where you install a disc then throw it in a draw for safe keeping, soft copies of 3DS games have a legitimate and massive advantage over hardcopies, so i never expected them to have a price drop

ill still buy soft copies of games that are session or multiplayer based so i can swap around on the go more easily, while hard copies will be bought for games im more likely to play for hours on end

ShellyDeKiller

#18

ShellyDeKiller said:

Sony's been doing this right, by offering a small discount for digital purchases on the Vita. Previously, they did what Nintendo is doing now, sometimes even RAISING the price. Not sure why small discounts can't be the case for WiiU/3DS games, but I can only hope consumers treat this decision the same way they treated Sony's choices.

WaLzgiStaff

#19

WaLzgi said:

Keep in mind that Iwata also said "for now", meaning that this decision can be changed in the future.

EvanTheLe

#20

EvanTheLe said:

Well, at least in the future if I can't find a certain game, it'll be on the eshop waiting... maybe

Reala

#21

Reala said:

Well that's nonsense to me at least, also what is this about retailers giving codes? I'm presuming you wont absolutely need to go to a retailer to get a downloadable 3DS retail game and can buy them the same as DSiware for example, otherwise that's just beyond nonsense.

crazyj2312

#22

crazyj2312 said:

He just doesn't want people to feel ripped off when buying the product, providing the option but no exclusive benefits. Someone may have internet but no store nearby, or may have a store nearby and no internet. They'll both be be getting a fair deal, in the eyes of Iwata.

_Joejoe_

#23

_Joejoe_ said:

My decision really isn't based on price. Of course, I can understand why one would be upset about this. Paying full price is also paying for the manual, box and cartridge.
Then again, the box takes up space, the cartridges either get lost (Happened once thus far.) stolen (Happened to 5 of my games thus far.) or I end up using up all my pockets carrying them around.(Everyday.) Having them downloaded digital seems like insurance. I don't really care about the boxes or the manual. (I keep them, but they take up space, gather dust and serve no purpose whatsoever.)
On top of that, games being released in South Africa is kinda sketchy. Retailers still don't even have Kid Icarus here yet. But my 3DS is connected to the UK's eshop, so when software comes out there, they come out on time and never sell out.

So, would I pay full price for a game that can't be lost or stolen that I can be sure will be able to buy the moment its released without having to add in the cost of petrol?
Yeah, I think so. I'd be paying for the game and the convenience instead of the game and it's packaging.

Course, I don't think that digital will really take off, as you all said. But then again, I don't really want it to. Even after the digital release I'll likely still buy retail simply because I don't like using credit cards. (I like to see my money go, I dunno, the game just feels that more valuable when I see my self lose something for it.) Also, if I don't go to the store for a game I'll likely not get out of the house much at all. XD The way I see it, full digital isn't my thing and I would end up missing opening a new and shiny box eventually. But its nice to have the option in case I can't get it in stores.

Now, if digital was more expensive, then I'd be annoyed.

steamhare

#24

steamhare said:

It would be okay, but I fully suspect games in the nintendo online shop will never go on sale, just like on the wii and ds. And PS3 and 360, from what I hear. Closed platforms and digital distribution haven't really proven themselves in that respect.

Objection

#26

Objection said:

Not that I was planning on getting a Wii U any time soon, but that kills my interest for downloads.
Downloads ARE worth less. No physical (actual) ownership, no physical media, including manual or box or whatever for collectors. No after-purchase value.

They should not cost the same.

Rensch

#27

Rensch said:

I think this is BS. The 'always having it with you' argument is hardly valid if you consider how small those cartridges are. You can easily keep multiple ones in your pockets.

If you like the idea of having everything printed out and look snazzy on the shelf, fine. It just seems reasonable to pay, say, 20-25% extra for it, even if it is only to compensate for the environmental strains traditional distribution brings along with it.

TKOWL

#28

TKOWL said:

Title should be changed from "Iwata Defends Identical Digital and Retail Prices" to Iwata's Excuses for Missing the Point of Digital Downloads".

SkywardLink98

#29

SkywardLink98 said:

Well, since stores pick the price of the code, they could still be offered at a lower price point than a physical copy.
And it doesn't step around ALL the costs of publishing a game, the piece of paper that has your code printed on it cost a lot to make! (Joke)

pc999

#30

pc999 said:

One of the things I value in digital downloads is the lower price... :(

Neram

#31

Neram said:

Skyrim is still $59.99 on Steam right now... That's actually more than the physical copy. This doesn't sound like anything new to me, besides he's not confirming that there won't be sales every now and then, who knows.

Sir_Deadly

#32

Sir_Deadly said:

I liked the idea at first, but now idk. If you dont have a case or booklet for the download game, it shouldnt cost $40 because it doesnt have all the other crap with it. I am also curious to see if they charge tax as well.

Sir_Deadly

#34

Sir_Deadly said:

@LztheBlehBird Really? The "for" must be invisible because i am read "Nintendo is now offering both versions at the same price point (the same suggested retail price)." Not saying it wont change because there is always a possibility of that, but that statement sounds like there sticking to it.

sykotek

#35

sykotek said:

More bad decisions. At this rate Iwata will be committing seppuku by the end of the year.

Ren

#37

Ren said:

I'm ok with that if, and only if, there are eventually price drops, and/or sales. Short of that the 'value' is really not there. Why should anyone ever buy any of those trash WiiWare games since the prices NEVER went down at all, it's a total joke. If there were suddenly sales on some of those crusty games, I'd consider buying them even now. Nintendo knows better than anyone how much price affects sales.

kkslider5552000

#39

kkslider5552000 said:

...huh.

I kinda get this idea. I understand the logic behind it I think. If a game costs (cost), you are not gonna buy it for more than (cost) so any more expensive games feel more irrelevent, and the value of it has gone down now. I hope this isn't against sales for digital games because then that just means the retail version costs less once it's a used game in a month or two (and much cheaper after years). Which would defeat the purpose of that.

Granted, let's be real for a second here, clearly...Nintendo just doesn't want to have to make Gamestop exclusive pre-order deals in order to appease Gamestop after daring to sell major games online for possibly less after sales.

HaNks

#40

HaNks said:

they can easily make more money from 1st party digital downloads. no overheads aside from servers etc, minimal compared to a retail distribution. price needs to reflect this somewhat...value has to be considered by both the producer and consumer.

grumblegrumble

#42

grumblegrumble said:

Oh yeah, you can 'have it with you at all times' alright, but what about the size of your SD card and all the crap that's eventually going to fill up on it? What do we do then? Just delete it and then have issues downloading something you digitally own only (Tetris Party Live, anyone?) suddenly vanish in the e-shop. No, thanks, Nintendo! I'll buy my games in the store. That way I can keep them forever, I have the awesome box and cover art it came in, and I can play it forever and ever and ever and ever more ;) And then sell it! lol ;) What a load of crap this is turning out to be!

grumblegrumble

#43

grumblegrumble said:

@Victoria Exactly!! Well, I'm guessing we're not keeping Americans employed when we Americans buy these retail boxed games, but still, I think that the physical retail copy is best, because you can always have it with you as well, and then sell it after a bit and let someone else enjoy the fun ;)

SilentHunter382

#44

SilentHunter382 said:

I wouldn't be buying digital on the 3ds anyway. My internet connection is bad (I really wished my lines supported a higher broadband speed) but for some reason my 3ds is the only system I own that gives me trouble when downloading game. If I even load a page on my pc while downloading a game it screw up the download and I would get freeze, Black screen of death, ect on the downloaded games, demos or videos,

I don't have this problem with Steam, xbox 360, Android and my wii. Only my 3ds gives my this problem which is annoying with larger downloads like demos. :(

Kaine_Morrison

#46

Kaine_Morrison said:

Just thought of something...
Is this exclusive to only 3DS and WiiU games?
Will regular DS games be downloadable as well since there are still a ton of regular DS games being released monthly?

LegendaryQ

#47

LegendaryQ said:

Why are people complaining about wanting lowered downloadable game prices? I mean, sure, maybe lower it by a dollar or two for packaging, but it's the same game. No matter how you buy it, it's the same thing. Why would you put two different prices for the same thing? (granted, this has happened multiple times with a number of games I can think of)
If you put them differently, the people getting the higher price could feel like they are being unfairly treated; Right now, Nintendo isn't transitioning (yet), it's offering an additional option to consumers.

ultrasann

#48

ultrasann said:

@Alienfish If we ourselves provide the storage [SD cards, hard drives (Wii U)], we have more options. We don't have to stick with whatever they give us. I'd rather have a choice than no choice at all.

MeloMan

#51

MeloMan said:

This is an interesting debate. 20 years from now, the whole world will probably strictly be downloading soft copies of games that probably will also be able to be resold, lol. But for now, there's a fine line out there of profit, and the publishers and retailers are trying to transition as slowly and smoothly as possible so that digital sales don't kill retail sales cause as we all know, you can produce a finite quantity of hard copies, but an infinite quantity of soft copies. Therefore, so retailers aren't eating the cost of hard copies sitting on the shelve because everyone's doing digital, keeping the price the same keeps the consumer "honest" by giving neither method an advantage and strictly forcing the consumer to buy one or the other strictly on preference and nothing more. I'm not saying that's right, but like I mentioned, publishers and especially retailers are trying to maximize profit in the end. The ultimate thing that I have an issue with is whether soft copies will depreciate just like the hard copies do, or as the hard copies disappear, will the digital prices stay full with the justification of "it's now rare an old therefore full price". This stuff is enough to drive ya crazy. Gaming used to be so simple..............

BXXL

#52

BXXL said:

This is ridiculous: if i pay a game 50 euros, i still may resell it once finished (as i do for the 2/3 of the games i play), and get at least 30 or 35 euros back in my favorite videogame shop, which does a great exchange program... with downloads, i find myself with stuff i just have to keep, and won't play again...

What's the value here? Kill the second-hand market and make even more billions, in Nintendo's point of view? I'm sorry, but the second-hand market is vital for me, otherwise, gaming would be a luxury i just can't afford... i buy half of my games second-hand, i resell 2/3 of my games in second hand, that's the only way to keep my budget reasonnable... if downloads cost the same price, there's absolutely NO value in downloading anything, just like with all those overpriced Wiiware and DSiware stuff i regret to have purchased, but even worse as the price is here three or four or five times more expansive...

No, if that's the future of videogames, i prefer to stop playing, it's that simple...

grimbldoo

#53

grimbldoo said:

I have stated this before and I am going to state it again. The main reason that downloadable games cost less is because you do NOT buy the game, you are only purchasing the licence to play the game. If Nintendo is stating that you are purchasing the whole game and not just the licence (which means that they do not have the right to remove the game from you system as they would if you only had the licence) then purchasing it at full retail price is acceptable.

@sykotek #35
Sorry bro, I think you meant Harakiri.

kdognumba1

#54

kdognumba1 said:

I see both sides and both points. One big thing I do want to note is how games go out of print and become rare, usually smaller retail JRPG's or Japanese centric games that have a limited print run. The chance to get these games throughout the systems life span is incredibly good however I don't see it viable to put the games at the same price as retail as there is no package for collectors and the cost of keeping the games on the server is not that of packaging and distribution.

janettocrossing

#55

janettocrossing said:

I agree, they price should be the same for both digital and packaged games. It wouldn't be fair if one was cheaper than the other. :P

komicturtle

#56

komicturtle said:

Of course people will attack Nintendo on this. There are those who don't realize it's the same case for PSN and even (omg I'm going there), Steam.

Argue about Steam sales- at the end of the day, when a new game comes out and also comes out on Steam, it's the same identical price.

Sir_Deadly

#57

Sir_Deadly said:

@Red_Kinetic Well i think where I live, we dont get charged tax here. but then again i might just not be paying attention. I think it depends on where u live.

Spoony_Tech

#58

Spoony_Tech said:

As long as the price drops when it does in the stores this shouldn't be a problem. However I don't think that will happen. If they offer steel diver for 39.99 I can find it for far less!

Sir_Deadly

#59

Sir_Deadly said:

@L4DYK0M1C Well i am talkin about downloads in generally for all distributors. we are paying extra for something they didnt spend money on making. Its cost them money to make a game disk and probably nothing for a download. Yes we get charged for a download but it shouldnt be the same as the cost of something they spent money on making.

Nin-freak

#60

Nin-freak said:

Basically what he said was: Since digital has some benefits, were going to take more money from you.

First time I hated a remark from Mr. Iwata.

WaxxyOne

#61

WaxxyOne said:

I personally will be downloading anything they offer up digitally rather than on a physical cart, for a couple reasons. First, I don't participate in the second-hand market because if I shell out money on a game, I want to keep it forever. Second, the convenience of having it always on the system is much nicer than having to juggle carts. Third, the pack-in materials for 99% of games these days is spam for other similar games and a "manual" that tells you in three languages how to insert the cartridge and has 4 pages of legalese. I won't miss any of it.

If there is an occassion game that comes with more (e.g. Kid Icarus) I will probably get it physically, but for me digital distribution of games is the future and the clear way to go. I also honestly don't mind Nintendo collecting more of the money without having to pay the middle men. After all, it's not like they're charging me more.

TheRegginator

#62

TheRegginator said:

While both options have their advantages, digital prices need to be lower because consumers have to buy storage media to keep said games on. The lower prices of digital games are what compensate for somebody buying a SD card or an external HDD to store them on.

rjejr

#64

rjejr said:

I won't reprint my entire PSN Bejelewed rip-off price post but the fact remains, physical copies of games can be had much cheaper a few months after release than DL. Look at Enslaved. If you are a day 1 purchaser than the price is the same, but any sane person with more brains than money who waits just 3 months can save a ton of money on games. Plus pre-order bonuses are extremely rare on DL.
Here's an example you all should be able to relate to - bought Skyward Sword for $50 release date from Kmart w/ $20 coupon so effectively $30. I played the whole game for 2 months then traded it in to Gamestop for $34. So I made $4 on the deal. Anybody can show me how to do that w/ DL than I'll be impressed.

ouroborous

#66

ouroborous said:

My opinion:
He's obviously a GREEDY B**TARD and money is more important to him than ANYTHING else. That's THE ONLY reason he's being a stickler about the pricing. He's actually worried about the couple of bucks per sale that he MIGHT lose??? Sheesh. Well Nintendo sadly isn't known for giving it's fans or consumers any love so I shouldn't really be surprised.
But there is no sane reason digital media should cost the same as physical media, personal preferences be damned, they have nothing to do with it. Come on, you should at least get a little discount. What a lame excuse... I guess you support pirating software Iwata, since you are encouraging it you moron.

Ernest_The_Crab

#67

Ernest_The_Crab said:

grimbldoo has a very good point. In this case, we may actually be buying the actual game itself and not just the license. The fact that we can transfer stuff between 3DS's makes it certainly seem that way.

Another thing that needs to be brought up and emphasized, is the fact his statement isn't 100% true, in the sense everyone is making it out to be. The digital codes being sold at stores are technically part of the digital download aspect and since the retailers are responsible for setting the price, there is bound to be price fluctuation.

Iwata isn't giving people two options, he's giving them three, one of which is more prone to being discounted.

@James I think you should put more emphasis on the digital codes in the article since a lot of people don't seem to understand that before posting.

Oceanous

#70

Oceanous said:

I think the downloadable version should be cheaper.
I look at everything and see if there is a re-sale value to it. If I bought a game from a store, I know I could either trade it in or sell it online via Amazon.com or any online places and get some money back.
If I download the game then I won't be able to sell it or trade it in EVER. So there is no incentive for me to download a digital copy when I can just buy the physical copy at the store for the same price and knowing that someday when I don't want it, I could still sell it.

DraculaX

#73

DraculaX said:

Well at least the digital copies will be the same price as retail and not overpriced like some other games on the eShop.

@FluffyNinja People just don't want to pay $40 or $60 for a new game. I can't believe people were actually expecting the digital versions to be cheaper.

omarzy

#75

omarzy said:

if the games cost more than the physical copies then people by the physical copies. if the games cost less than the physical copies then people only buy the digital ones. have them be the same price and 17 million 3DS become 17 million retail stores.

Bass_X0

#76

Bass_X0 said:

If there's a game I know I will be buying at full price and won't want to sell later, I don't mind downloading. If there is a game I'd like to play but not willing to pay full price for, I'll wait until the retail version comes down in cost.

Tony3DS

#77

Tony3DS said:

I get it, I really do, physical discs cost very little to produce and ship (I’m not sure about 3DS carts) so I don’t expect some big cut in price because of that. But I rarely pay full retail price. I wonder what Nintendo’s plan is when games have been out a long time and retailers undercut them? Or even a short time (I got Kirby’s Epic Yarn for $5 new from Best Buy over the holidays and felt guilty getting it that cheap)…So if they are charging $49 and at the store its $25 or less what then? I am looking forward to having a few titles with me at all times though (Animal Crossing 3DS, Brain Age 3 I'm looking at you!)

JimLad

#78

JimLad said:

That's pure BS, digital always costs less to sell than physical media.
Whether it's a noticeable amount or a couple of dollars, the only explaination here is he wants those dollars for himself.

darkgamer001

#79

darkgamer001 said:

Since digital media costs less to sell than retail copies, that difference should be reflected in the pricing. Yeah sure, PSN game prices usually costs as much as (or even more than) the retail copies, but Nintendo should know better than to follow a bad example.

eviLaTtenDant

#80

eviLaTtenDant said:

I hope this doesn't lead to frustrated third parties who would love to make the download cheaper than the physical product but can't 'cause Ninty won't let 'em.

Joco84

#81

Joco84 said:

I will not make a download purchase of a retail game, unless the price is at least 80% cheaper.
I'm all for getting a bargain, but I also like physical copies of games. If I'm not getting the incentive to change to download, they can kiss my rear!

Uncle_Optimus

#82

Uncle_Optimus said:

@Tony64 I believe Nintendo's slant here is to offer download codes to retailers at a cheaper wholesale price (minus manufacture costs) with NO msrp...in other words retailers will price this digital content as they see fit. This LIKELY means cheaper digital versions, but you will have to purchase from the retailer instead of directly from Nintendo via EShop.
This strategy should work for now, they are walking a thin line but it is something they still must do in deference to retail partners. Notice that Sony and MS do pretty much the same thing but non-console platform holders like Steam do not.

hydeks

#83

hydeks said:

yes u get the bonus on having the game with you wherever you go, BUT you don't get a game card, you don't get a nice case, no psychical manual and you want us to pay the same as retail? No thanks...I was down for retail games being downloaded IF there cheaper, but now...no thanks...

Shruikan

#84

Shruikan said:

I´m gonna buy both Digital and Retail but i´m probaly stick with retail because i like a new and special box

CBattles6

#85

CBattles6 said:

"The needs of society shall be determined by the choices to be made by the consumers."
Then don't be surprised when no one buys your horribly priced download games.

shimage

#86

shimage said:

If downloadable copies are priced the same, then retail versions are effectively cheaper because they go on sale and you can sell them when you're finished with them, or you could even buy it used from someone else. As others have mentioned, there is even the cost of storage medium.

That said, I have had this argument before with people over the cost of ebooks, so I guess we already know how this will play out.

Knux

#87

Knux said:

And Iwata completely misses the point of digital downloads again...I'm not surprised.

Sean_Aaron

#88

Sean_Aaron said:

I prefer downloads for everything as long as I have the right to re-download in the event of a disk failure or whatever other reason. With optical disc "rot" I'm stuck trying to track down another copy of the game and for some of my games that would be nearly impossible.

Having the same price at launch doesn't mean much to me; I expect the price would go down in time just as it does with retail games post-release. Hell, iTunes has sales on films and music, so why wouldn't Nintendo for games?

The biggest plus is that we could have a more comprehensive Virtual Console here; even better if they had cross-region stuff. I'm thinking Namco's genius Mr. Driller Drill-Land which was exclusively for the Japanese Gamecube and is the rarest game I own.

If Nintendo is serious about offering retail titles for download across the board this could be a real boon for small print-run or overlooked titles. We should embrace it; not criticise it.

Trikeboy

#89

Trikeboy said:

I don't mind this. I bought my 3DS in my native Scotland but I am currently working in Asia. Getting new games at retail prices is very hard because I have to get it sent to my parents so they can ship to me. Ebay can help but still costs more. Paying retail prices to get a new game, the same day I buy it, may be a weird thing to be excited about but I am.

Dreadjaws

#90

Dreadjaws said:

I've said this before, but there's something people are not considering: import taxes mean that retail prices in many countries are much higher than in the North America, Europe or Japan.

In my country, the cheapest way to bring retail games still costs almost double the price than in the US. But there are no taxes for digital games (or they are ridiculously small), which means that in those countries digital distribution will always prevail.

This is the reason Steam is such a success all over the world, despite its games being at the same price as retail (well, that and constant sales, but I digress). That and the fact that we don't have to wait for weeks for our games to arrive in the mail.

Kitsune_Rei

#91

Kitsune_Rei said:

I like to get something back for my games when I'm done on the secondary market, so I'll be sticking to physical objects. Its nice at least they are giving people the choice, its a step forward.

Nintendophile

#92

Nintendophile said:

@Neram Yeah, but when you buy games on Steam, you can download them to your computer as many times as you want, and can even download it on other computers as long as you log in with your Steam account.

Kisame83

#93

Kisame83 said:

They can price however they want, and it isn't unprecedented. Vita downloads are the same price (though it is nice that you get the manual with the software). And Steam, sales aside, is the same. If you want Modern Warfare 3 or Skyrim, these will run you $59.99 on Steam, though they'll probably randomly go on sale for like 40% off at some random time or another.

What irks me here is that...he didn't really address it. The response to "there are less inherent costs in digital releases as opposed to physical ones" deserves an explanation. Not some random mumbling about "some people price lower, some price the same, life's all about options right?" I'd respect it more if he said "look, there's server costs and bandwidth to maintain which mirrors the costs of producing a physical disc." One, it is true. Two, it doesnt smell like spineless BS.

SyFyTy

#94

SyFyTy said:

It is strange how they alllow the music industry to create the gold standard with the topic of IP rights but when it comes to physical VS digital values they would take the opposite attitude [of said music industry] and say that physical media should be the same price as digitial.. "He who lives by the YEN will DIE by the YEN". -SyFyTy say....

SyFyTy

#95

SyFyTy said:

"We do not hold such a premise that digitally distributed software has less value. In fact, as we have discussed this with a number of software publishers around the world, we have found that their opinions are completely divided on the topic of the price points .."
this is exactly why we are NOT seeing the same flood of interest from game designers on the 3ds that we did on the DS, companies are standing up against Nintendos unfair [read as unbalanced] business practices

Sean_Aaron

#96

Sean_Aaron said:

@Dreadjaws: It's a fair point and why I'd like to see the whole concept of region-coding consigned to the dustbin, but the fact is that you'd need a global clearinghouse for copyright and worldwide game ratings systems and I just cannot see that happening in the near future.

Until then, it will suck to be from a country that isn't one of the core game marketplaces. At least there will still be retail titles offered to import!

Uncle_Optimus

#98

Uncle_Optimus said:

I am pretty sure Iwata implied that Nintendo will supply game download codes to retailers at a cheaper price but that the purchase price is ultimately up to them.
This could very well mean cheaper download Games IF purchased at retail.
I do wonder how sales tax sorts out tho (I'm kind of new to this)...if I buy a New Super Mario Bros download code from GameStop do I still pay sales tax?
What if I purchase the game direct from Nintendo eShop?

SyFyTy

#99

SyFyTy said:

I notice he justifies his decisions with (faulty ) logic. Makes it sound as though it should be so, but on paper and in the rest of the world, his logic does not stand up.His spin doctor approach fools few except his employees. You will never convince me another persons thoughts (not in physical form) no matter what the function ie book, movie, game etc,, is worth the same on or off a physical holding contraption.

SyFyTy

#100

SyFyTy said:

@Sean_Aaron the problem of digital download is that the physical fomat is around for much longer than the comapny makes the digital redownload available. Which only serves N's wallet...It's the same problem with WiFi focused games, they are far less valued once the initial sales tide subsides as within a year or two there are no servers to play them online. Once servers no longer operate, the games WiFi content is useless and you are left with the little bit of token single play content they might have supplied in the first place...This is a present problem with many WiFi Ds games right now, the online has been pulled already... I have dozens of DS games, some not even opened which are worth half thier original value because they wifi can not be played now...

kyuubikid213

#101

kyuubikid213 said:

Digital Download sounds cool, but I would rather have Physical Media. I mean, I like the idea of digital download for Virtual Console games because that means I don't have to go buy an N64 and the games I want which wouldn't be hard to find (thanks to an old game store near my house), but it would be expensive.

I like physical media because sometimes I get bored and when I can't play my games, I can still look at the boxes and whatnot.

Also, my brother has a PSP Go. His system went on the fritz and now it just randomly dies and comes back to life. I don't want a ton of awesome games stored on digital media only to be destroyed when my system finally kicks the bucket.

And then there is the obvious reason of being able to sell the physical media...

shinesprite

#102

shinesprite said:

This, coupled with newly-instated ISP monthly bandwidth limits, download times, and storage costs mean that I'll be holding off for a while.

. . . but hopefully help some developers (without a publisher) get their product to market.

UnseatingKDawg

#103

UnseatingKDawg said:

I'm not sure why people are surprised at this decision. For cryin' out loud, Skyrim is downloadable off of Xbox LIVE and it's still a whopping $60.

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