The End of the $60 Game?? - Page 2 - AVS Forum
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post #31 of 59 Old 05-04-2012, 06:43 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Leo_Ames View Post

Length of game certainly matters to me. I'll gladly purchase and play any enjoyable game.

But if it's $60, I would hope I'd at least get 15 hours or so of use out of it. $30/hour isn't a proportion I'd find acceptable and I hope not many others would as well.

Publishers would love nothing better than for two hour games at $60 a pop to become acceptable. Development cost would be a fraction of what it otherwise would be and people would be more quickly buying something else to play.

But as a gamer, my limit would be about $10 total and even then the game would have to be an amazing two hours (Or require a lot of practicing before being able to actually play through it in two hours).

Agreed. The day that people start accepting a 2 hour game at $60 is the day that the greedy bastards at EA decide to release Mass Effect 4 as a 20 disc set, releasing one disc every month for $60. I love the ME series, but I don't love it enough to pay $1200 for one ME game!

Side Note: In the above scenario, and given the ME3 debacle, EA would probably only release the last disc to the public that contained the "real ending" at a cost of $500.
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post #32 of 59 Old 05-04-2012, 10:10 PM
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Originally Posted by Leo_Ames View Post

Length of game certainly matters to me. I'll gladly purchase and play any enjoyable game.

But if it's $60, I would hope I'd at least get 15 hours or so of use out of it. $30/hour isn't a proportion I'd find acceptable and I hope not many others would as well.

Publishers would love nothing better than for two hour games at $60 a pop to become acceptable. Development cost would be a fraction of what it otherwise would be and people would be more quickly buying something else to play.

But as a gamer, my limit would be about $10 total and even then the game would have to be an amazing two hours (Or require a lot of practicing before being able to actually play through it in two hours).

Game length depends a lot to type of gameplay. For example, most RPG games better have 50+ hours of playtime because first 10-20 hours are only to discover ways to upgrade and expand your character.

For action adventure games, it's better have 8-10 hours because most of the time is "wasted" killing enemies. The actual story in the game is probably only 1-2 hours long.

Some like to compare game length to movies. That is very inaccurate because don't see one action scene in the movie going non-stop for 1-2 hours. In movies, scenes are also tightly packed to get to the point. Reality, it's somewhat more accurate to compare action adventure games to a mini TV series that is 12-20 hours long.

One area that is unique to video games is getting stuck at certain points in the game. That can be unable to defeat the boss to continue, stuck at a puzzle that you can't solve to continue or in open world games, you simply got lost for hours wondering around and not accomplish anything. It can be easily proven on classic adventure games that has no combat. Once you know what to do, you can run through the entire games in minutes. Action games are harder to measure because every player skill is different. Kind of the reason why today's action adventure games difficult setting only increase the difficulty on the action part. The adventure or puzzle part has fixed difficulty. The game developer is simply too lazy to design multiple puzzle complexity based on difficulty setting.
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post #33 of 59 Old 05-04-2012, 10:26 PM
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Most of us that don't want to spend $60 buying the game new on day 1 would wait until the game price drops after a few months. It seems the publishers want to discourage it. Pre-order bonus contents have been mostly the encouragement to buy the game before it comes out.

With Prototype 2, the publisher is experimenting with another strategy by diminishes the game contents over the time after the game comes out. The game comes with a code that enables the game to unlock special game contents after the game came out. On certain dates, certain content in the game gets unlocked. That can be avatar outfits or in-game contents (unknown what in-game contents get unlocked since it hasn't reached the 1st unlock date.) According to the publisher, all the date specific unlocked contents will be put on the store for sale at a later date. (Also unknown if you can still get the content unlocked dates later if you aren't online that those days.)

Basically, the publisher is saying, you think you can save some money for the game price to drop by waiting, some of the game contents will diminish over the time. If you want the diminished contents after the game is only "$20", you have to pay extra. Anyone without internet is screwed either way, buy the game day 1 at $60 doesn't give you anyway to unlock the timed contents.

Of course the scary part is once any of the strategies have proven to work well, the publishers will try to disable as many contents on the disc as possible to encourage buying the game new at day 1. The reason I say this is when there are only a few games using such restriction, few gamers care. By the time more gamers protested, it's too late because most games are using such restrictions. Remember "Online Pass"? I protested almost 2 years too early when almost no one cared.
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post #34 of 59 Old 05-05-2012, 03:37 PM
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Originally Posted by Vortex3D View Post

For action adventure games, it's better have 8-10 hours because most of the time is "wasted" killing enemies. The actual story in the game is probably only 1-2 hours long.

A quality 8-10 hours isn't unacceptable to me. It's not a hard and fast rule where I need to expect a certain number of hours per dollar. Half-Life 2 is one of my favorite games of the last 10 years and that's just a 15 hour experience (And I paid $50 for the Xbox port shortly before it became $20 everywhere back then to first play through it, and I was still very satisified after those 15 hours even despite my purchase being poorly timed). And Half-Life 2 is average or maybe a bit above average for game length for AAA games in general... although on the long side where single player FPS campaigns are concerned.

Every game doesn't need to be a 50 or 100 hour plus experience. I wouldn't even want every game to be that long and there are some games that I think run far too long from start to completion of single player (Such as the single player modes of every Gran Turismo and Forza release).

But an extreme like a 2 hour experience for $60 is simply unacceptable in today's era of low difficulty games. Back in the day it could've worked since you might've needed to invest 10 hours or more into it before being able to become skilled enough to fully run through those two hours of gameplay. But not today where all that is required to finish 99% of the games out there is a tiny bit of patience at most and where failure will usually lose you just a handful of minutes of progress.
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post #35 of 59 Old 05-05-2012, 06:50 PM
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Originally Posted by Leo_Ames View Post

But an extreme like a 2 hour experience for $60 is simply unacceptable in today's era of low difficulty games. Back in the day it could've worked since you might've needed to invest 10 hours or more into it before being able to become skilled enough to fully run through those two hours of gameplay. But not today where all that is required to finish 99% of the games out there is a tiny bit of patience at most and where failure will usually lose you just a handful of minutes of progress.

Which was precisely my point. I'd happily pay $60 for an incredible 2-3 hour experience. But the game you've described would be a complete rip-off because it would be a mediocre game. The problem isn't that it's short. Give me 2 hours of mediocrity or 8-10 hours of mediocrity and it's still a rip off. The length is irrelevant.

For example, I still think Sands of Time is one of the greatest all-time games. But that only took 4 hours on my first time through. Even shorter on subsequent plays. However, the game is so good that it is fun to replay over and over again. The same applies to Ico--except that game's even shorter. Hell, I've bought Ico twice now (once on PS2 and again on PS3). If more $60 games were that good--despite being that short--I'd be very happy. And I think Vanquish was one of the greatest games of this generation, and it only took 4-5 hours the first time through. I've played through it now 3 or 4 times, and I'm sure I will play through it more in the future. Then you start factoring in the Japanese import Cave games I've bought. Those games only take 30mins to "finish," and I've paid close to $90 for a couple of them. I don't feel at all like I overpaid for those games.

A great game is a great game. I don't feel ripped off in the slightest having paid $60 for any of these games.

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post #36 of 59 Old 05-05-2012, 11:01 PM
 
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Judging a game by the same rules you purchase a lightbulb is a pretty dumb idea.

A game that lasts 100 hours that I don't remember any of six months from now is not better than 90 minutes of game that was so intense that I still remember a decade from now.
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post #37 of 59 Old 05-05-2012, 11:44 PM
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Originally Posted by confidenceman View Post

Which was precisely my point. I'd happily pay $60 for an incredible 2-3 hour experience. But the game you've described would be a complete rip-off because it would be a mediocre game. The problem isn't that it's short. Give me 2 hours of mediocrity or 8-10 hours of mediocrity and it's still a rip off. The length is irrelevant.

That's not how I feel in the slightest. I'd still feel ripped off at $60 even if those two hours were great. Can't imagine being so wowed by a $60 videogame where I'd happily remove it from my disc drive after two hours of gameplay.

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For example, I still think Sands of Time is one of the greatest all-time games. But that only took 4 hours on my first time through. Even shorter on subsequent plays. However, the game is so good that it is fun to replay over and over again. The same applies to Ico--except that game's even shorter. Hell, I've bought Ico twice now (once on PS2 and again on PS3). If more $60 games were that good--despite being that short--I'd be very happy.

I played through the Sands of Time on the Xbox last year and it took me a good 15 hours or so to play through it. A time I see reflected in several reviews from back in the day of the game. I wouldn't of felt ripped off spending $50 on this (Although I bought it just a few years ago and probably paid under $10 for it). Great game and it wasn't over within minutes.

And you beat Ico far quicker than 4 hours for Sands of Time the first time? Certainly not a long game, but that sounds extremely quick. 5-8 hours the first time through seems to be the commonly cited figures doing a search just now with most quotes from people that played it being around 8 (and I think I was around 8 as well... although I'm never in too big of a rush, particularly in games like Ico). 8 hours is a fair length for such a game I think, even if I had bought it new for $50 (I bought it used for probably under $30 a year or so after release). The few quotes I saw under 5 hours were from people boasting just how quick they did it with others telling them how much they missed out rushing through it.

You're certainly awfully quick with your play throughs. Heck, there are times in games that really captivate me where I'll sometimes stop and just look at the scenery. I'm dozens of hours into Oblivion on the 360 after 5 years of on and off time and I still find myself sometimes stopping just to look around for instance.

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Then you start factoring in the Japanese import Cave games I've bought. Those games only take 30mins to "finish," and I've paid close to $90 for a couple of them. I don't feel at all like I overpaid for those games.

Did you only play through them once or something?

The point of them isn't to just see the end with unlimited continues. The point to a good shooter is to get to the end with the highest score possible with the least loss in lifes. A 30 minute shooter isn't in any shape or form a 30 minute experience for a shooter fan.

Check out the achievements of some of the big fans of the Raiden Fighters Aces compilation for instance. Some crazy sounding achievements to the non shooter fans in there for the person that buys it to just to keep dumping a virtual quarter in every 30 seconds to get to the end before putting it away.

But a lot of the fans have gotten the achievements for dozens of hours of play since they're doing what shooter fans do, trying to master the game and fighting it out for high scores. A good shooter will offer an experience that last many times the actual length of the game from start to finish.

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A great game is a great game. I don't feel ripped off in the slightest having paid $60 for any of these games.

A great game is a great game. But price sure as heck matters to most people. I've got no desire to ever pay $60 for a two hour game no matter how great it is. If I heard that this awesome new game was a two hour experience, I'd be waiting for it to hit the bargain bins a few years later.

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Originally Posted by darklordjames View Post

Judging a game by the same rules you purchase a lightbulb is a pretty dumb idea.

A game that lasts 100 hours that I don't remember any of six months from now is not better than 90 minutes of game that was so intense that I still remember a decade from now.

No doubt on all counts.

All I'm out to argue is that length of the experience does matter. It's not the most important criteria for evaluating a game. In fact it's not anywhere even close to being the most important criteria for evaluating a game.

But it does get factored into there for most people including myself.
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post #38 of 59 Old 05-06-2012, 07:09 AM
 
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It seems that some are missing the point entirely.

It isn't just about hours per dollar. If a game is so incredible that it warrants a "must-have" immediate purchase, it should always leave me wanting more, regardless of length. At only 2 hours long, most would feel cheated; not necessarily out of money, but content. It amazes me that anyone would rush through a game that they supposedly adore. I, like Leo, will take pause to savor even the smallest details of such a game.

However, back to the monetary issue, 99% of households wouldn't contain a wife that would be thrilled to have their hubby forking out $240 every week on games. That $12,000 per year would surely cause strife for the vast majority. In today's world, it's certainly no stretch to imagine two hour games selling poorly initially; a RedBox or GameFly rental would likely be made by most, with a possible purchase after a 80% price drop.
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post #39 of 59 Old 05-06-2012, 07:42 AM
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Originally Posted by Leo_Ames View Post

I played through the Sands of Time on the Xbox last year and it took me a good 15 hours or so to play through it. A time I see reflected in several reviews from back in the day of the game.

That's hard to believe, but it's possible that I've got a knack for puzzle-oriented games. I also breezed through Braid and Limbo in no time without ever getting stuck or looking up hints. So it's possible that I got through Sands of Time and Ico so quickly because I'm good at those kinds of games. But considering that there's an achievement in Ico for beating it in two hours, it isn't hard to believe that the average is closer to 4 or 5 hours. And 15 hours to beat Sands of Time makes me think you're talking about a completely different game. Also, Elder Scrolls games are a different beast altogether; the whole point of those games is to wander and waste time. But that's all beside the point.

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The point of them isn't to just see the end with unlimited continues. The point to a good shooter is to get to the end with the highest score possible with the least loss in lifes. A 30 minute shooter isn't in any shape or form a 30 minute experience for a shooter fan.

Yeah. I'm a shmup fan. I know the drill about the 1cc. Pretty sure I've even got you on most of my shmup leaderboards on 360. But my point is that a truly good game should warrant replays. If it doesn't, then it probably wasn't all that great. A shmup is just an extreme version of that--which is also why shumps are extremely good.

And that's also why I wouldn't shell out $60 for a game like Limbo. I didn't enjoy it all that much, and it's not a game that I feel the need to revisit from time to time. It was worth it for the price, but not because it was short.

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A great game is a great game. But price sure as heck matters to most people.

Maybe that's the difference. I'm not talking about "most people." I'm just talking about me.

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post #40 of 59 Old 05-06-2012, 07:45 AM
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Even for an amazing game like portal 2 that I only got 10-15 hours out of...the $60 stung. I adored every second of it, but when you're used to getting 200 hours out of a game like skyrim or mw3....it still doesn't seem right.

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post #41 of 59 Old 05-06-2012, 09:18 AM
 
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Even for an amazing game like portal 2 that I only got 10-15 hours out of...the $60 stung. I adored every second of it, but when you're used to getting 200 hours out of a game like skyrim or mw3....it still doesn't seem right.

Portal 2 is a perfect example of what I was talking about. I didn't care about the money since it's a phenomenal game, but because it was such a good game, when it was over, I was left wanting more...even at the medium-length of hours the game offered. If it were shorter, I would have definitely felt cheated of content, since the game needed that long to build itself and its story effectively.

Your example of MW3 is the opposite example. I wouldn't pay $5 for that game, regardless of how long one can play it. BF3, on the other hand, has seen me put 900+ hours into it since day one...and that's with me taking huge breaks in hundred-hour chunks to play Reckoning, all of the Fallout: New Vegas DLCs, the whole Saints Row series, and the entire Mass Effect series.
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post #42 of 59 Old 05-06-2012, 10:44 AM
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Even for an amazing game like portal 2 that I only got 10-15 hours out of...the $60 stung. I adored every second of it, but when you're used to getting 200 hours out of a game like skyrim or mw3....it still doesn't seem right.

I also didn't think Portal 2 was worth $60, but for opposite reasons. I was very disappointed with it. My biggest problem with Portal 2 was that it was too long and too easy. The first Portal was worlds better, despite being a quarter as long. One of the big differences was that the first game was designed to be replayed, and the puzzles were solvable in multiple ways. But Portal 2 has much easier puzzles that can only be solved in one or two ways. It's really not a replayable game. It's as though Valve has begun catering to the masses who--even judging by this thread--would prefer longer, easier games rather than better, shorter ones.

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post #43 of 59 Old 05-06-2012, 11:28 AM
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Originally Posted by darklordjames View Post

Judging a game by the same rules you purchase a lightbulb is a pretty dumb idea.

A game that lasts 100 hours that I don't remember any of six months from now is not better than 90 minutes of game that was so intense that I still remember a decade from now.

This.

I can't believe people are complaining about portal 2. The campaign was a satisfying length and while not as one-shot-awesome as the original still managed to be immensely entertaining with an assortment of clever puzzles and memorable characters along with a strong sense of exploration and discovery despite it's supremely linear plot line. In addition, the game added a lot of value with the co-op campaign. Personally I felt $60 was more than a fair price for the care valve put into crafting such an experience.

Comparing something like Portal 2 or Dead Space or Drake's Deception to a game like Call of Duty is silly. Sure, you can get a lot of miles out of a multiplayer focused online FPS but does it really offer more for your dollar? Especially Cod-- which I am a fan of, btw-- but so much of Cod is recycled from previous entries in the series you could make the argument that you're buying largely the same EXPERIENCE with a new coat of paint each year! Not that I have an issue with that, mind you.

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post #44 of 59 Old 05-06-2012, 01:49 PM
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And 15 hours to beat Sands of Time makes me think you're talking about a completely different game.

I'm talking about the first 3D entry in the series on the Xbox/PS2/GCN (Not that awful 1st attempt to bring the series into 3D that was on the PC and Dreamcast from a couple of years earlier). Before they changed things up significantly to try to make the series appear more cool to the masses to improve sales numbers (Which is where I jumped ship, although the remastered PS3 collection is tempting and I'll buy it one of these days). I was certainly past 10 hours in my play through and I see several mentions of 15 hours in mainstream reviews for the game back then (And the first hit just now when searching for Sands of Time length in Google states 10-20 hours at someone's blog). So I think it was a decent length game for quite a few people.

I actually didn't even realize Ico could do be done in under two hours (I've yet to get the PS3 remasters, but will someday). But that's no where close to what the average person put into it in their first play though. Type in "length of Ico" into Google. 8 hours seems to be a very common number to cite for people's first play throughs of it.

Think I'll pop that in tonight thanks to this thread.

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Also, Elder Scrolls games are a different beast altogether; the whole point of those games is to wander and waste time. But that's all beside the point.

Spending lots of time exploring the game world and even sometimes stopping and admiring things seems like something Oblivion/Skyrim and Ico share if you ask me. Anyways it was just an example of one reason my completion times are higher than they otherwise would be if I just stayed focused on my objectives all the time.

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But my point is that a truly good game should warrant replays..

Replayability certainly counts. I've played through Super Mario World to completion probably 15 times. It's a hallmark of a great game.

But some of my favorite gaming memories to this day revolve around Nintendo's Zelda series (Which I've played every Nintendo published entry to completion so far at least once outside of Skyward Sword). And almost as a rule, I'm one and done where those games are concerned and similar styles of games. Beyond the original Zelda which always seemed high in replayability, I've just revisited Link to the Past and Ocarina of Time so far and just once for each (Despite counting both in my top 5 list). A good number of favorite gaming moments of mine have been that way and I've never been the type that was so in love with a game that I'd immediately replay it after finishing it.

Still haven't done play through number 2 on Half-Life 2.

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Even for an amazing game like portal 2 that I only got 10-15 hours out of...the $60 stung. I adored every second of it, but when you're used to getting 200 hours out of a game like skyrim or mw3....it still doesn't seem right.

Skyrim is another one of those extremes that I mentioned earlier, just in the opposite direction from this theoretical AAA $60 release that runs for two hours. Seems unfair if you ask me to let it impact your opinions on other games. 10-15 hours is well into average territory for the length of a single player experience these days (And the higher end of that spectrum might even be above average). It's no where close to below average for game length.

And it blows Modern Warfare 3 out of the water in terms of the length of the single player experience. I can guarantee you that at least 95% of those 200 hours you invested into it were multiplayer (And probably much more than 95% since most seem to ignore the campaigns in these games or just breeze through them on the easiest difficulty).

Holding the lack of a competitive multiplayer mode for Portal 2 against it seems unfair to me. An initial playthrough of Portal 2, maybe a second for achievements, and perhaps a 3rd with a friend doesn't seem like an unrealistic proposition.

Yet just one of those is still 2-3 times the length of time a single play through MW3's single player campaign. Got to compare apples and apples, not apples and oranges. Not every game needs or is even suited for a competitive online multiplayer mode.
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post #45 of 59 Old 05-06-2012, 02:08 PM
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Sure the $60 game is going to end... because they are going to charge $70-$80 for PS4/Xbox 540 games:

-one of the takeaways from this gen is that publishers and developers want consumers to pay more than $60 for a game (i.e., collector's editions, online passes, day 1/hold back/on-disk DLC, the war on used games, etc.)

-while lowering the price point to $40 for more sales volume makes sense to you, me and everyone else, that gives pubs and devs too much credit; game makers are not big picture thinkers and neither are the people who invest in those companies

-they will not take the risk of cutting $20 in the hopes of making it up with future DLC and larger sales volume; there is a large swath of gamers out there who never buy DLC (the average buy rate for console DLC is still pretty low) and the short term pain of $20 less for possible long term DLC gain and more sales volume will not be worthwhile to them (hence, the not big picture thinkers thing)

-Count on $60 WiiU games and around $75 for PS4/Xbox 540 games (that still may be locked to one user and chock full of online passes and holdback DLC).
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post #46 of 59 Old 05-06-2012, 02:28 PM
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Well, the truth is...the $60 game ended a long time ago. Games don't stay $60 for long, even new. Go to your local target...anything more than a month or two old that isn't Mario or call of duty is $40 or less. Same on amazon, and in GameStop. They know quite well that they can sell more games at $40 than at $60, but they know equally well that people won't balk at paying $60 for a "must have".

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post #47 of 59 Old 05-06-2012, 06:24 PM
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Originally Posted by Leo_Ames View Post

Replayability certainly counts.

On this we're agreed 100%. For me, what makes a great short game worth $60 is that it's (theoretically) endlessly replayable.

But I'm still super skeptical of those time-to-completion figures you're seeing on Sands of Time and Ico. Those are solidly in the 4-6 hour range, and fall well below that on subsequent plays. I don't think I'm at all an exceptionally good gamer, so something's screwy there. That's part of what I've always loved about those games. They're games that I can play through over the course of 2 or 3 evenings. Other recent favorites like Vanquish and Mirror's Edge also fall in that range (though Mirror's Edge is probably closer to the 5-7 hour range).

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Still haven't done play through number 2 on Half-Life 2.

Now, that's a game that falls in the 15-hour range. I've replayed it a few times over the years. Definitely on the lengthier side for the genre.

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Well, the truth is...the $60 game ended a long time ago. Games don't stay $60 for long, even new. Go to your local target...anything more than a month or two old that isn't Mario or call of duty is $40 or less. Same on amazon, and in GameStop. They know quite well that they can sell more games at $40 than at $60, but they know equally well that people won't balk at paying $60 for a "must have".

It also works the other way. I agree that the $60 game died a few years ago. Not only do game prices drop quickly, but we're seeing so many ways that publishers "add value" (through DLC, collector's editions, and the like) that few people actually pay $60 for a game. They either wait for the price to drop, or they go whole hog and buy everything else they can for the game.

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post #48 of 59 Old 05-06-2012, 07:42 PM
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But I'm still super skeptical of those time-to-completion figures you're seeing on Sands of Time and Ico. Those are solidly in the 4-6 hour range, and fall well below that on subsequent plays. I don't think I'm at all an exceptionally good gamer, so something's screwy there.

A quick Google search and my memories of single play throughs of each (Particularly where time is concerned) aren't the two best sources in the world. So you're probably right.

I'm going to replay Ico for the first time. I think I'll watch the time just to see how it pans out. Not ever in too big of a rush which adds time. But I'm decent at games and should complete it within a reasonable time, particularly since I've played it once before.

That's one reason I hate online first person shooters for the most part. I'd rather play like real life where team work, patience, coordination, and being slow and methodical counts where as everyone else wants to play such games individually and as quick as possible while labeling the people that want to rely on strategy instead of reactions and luck of the draw as a camper when they get caught out by it...
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post #49 of 59 Old 05-06-2012, 09:06 PM
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^^^ Couldn't agree more. I think that's why I enjoyed my time with Killzone 2 so much more than just about any other multiplayer FPS since Counter Strike. Unfortunately, I think the hot-dogging (CoD) idiots have won. That's also why I now opt for co-op experiences and leaderboard competitions when I play online. Multiplayer frag-fests just don't do it for me anymore.

And I'm pretty sure you'll be surprised at how quickly you fly through Ico. But, man, that's such a great experience. Just thinking about it makes me want to jump in again. It's like watching a favorite movie again or rereading a favorite book.

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post #50 of 59 Old 05-07-2012, 11:16 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PiratesCove View Post

Interesting Artice:

http://games.yahoo.com/blogs/plugged...181412574.html

Summary; Games cost waaaaay too much with "free-to-play" and cell phone / pad / casual P.C. games at much lower prices.

Also: Video game sales are DOWN.....

Maybe...so far I've bought ZERO games this year...

Not to metion all those 4th Quarter AAA titles from the end of last year I'm still playing....

Or all those older titles I haven't played/finished yet...

It's coming. They only were allowed to stay in the $50-60 range for the 15 or so years because the market as a whole exploded. Sales volume meant they could increase development costs, while keeping prices the same. CD/DVD/BR also made production cheaper, which helped early on.

I remember back in that day paying $75 for a SNES cartridge. For a game experience no unlike what you can now download for $5 from the apple store. That's like us paying $175 for a game today! For a freaking SNES experience! Absolute prices of games have not changed, but anyone thinking "$60 is the same" as in 1996 is kidding themselves. games require thousand of more man house to develop on pricier technology systems, at the same time inflation has eaten away the value of that $50-60. It be like if Gum was still $0.05 a pack and us complaining that raising it to .10 was crazy.

Gamers are a spoiled bunch, but it's the publishers fault. And the industry is in major trouble. Too much focus on $60 prices, and AAA blockbuster games. Too many good games in the system. Far too many copycats/stinkers. Not enough "bargain titles". Dev / licensing costs too high (thus limiting bargain titles). Also, every year the flood around specific marketing dates has gotten worse and worse.... we have 12 months but everything is release within one of 3 specific times, driving up competition and prices, while diminishing sales. Something will have to give, and soon.

I believe the second great crash is coming, and it's going to wipe out a lot of the big names. Games won't disappear, but there will be major changes. And a lot of the Indy developers on the forefront will be poised to reshape the industry and be on the forefront of what comes next. Sometimes you need fresh blood and new ideas.

Look what DD and innovating pricing (like on Steam) has done to the PC market. People are giving it a second look.
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post #51 of 59 Old 05-07-2012, 11:26 AM
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Originally Posted by GalvatronType_R View Post

Sure the $60 game is going to end... because they are going to charge $70-$80 for PS4/Xbox 540 games:

-one of the takeaways from this gen is that publishers and developers want consumers to pay more than $60 for a game (i.e., collector's editions, online passes, day 1/hold back/on-disk DLC, the war on used games, etc.)

-while lowering the price point to $40 for more sales volume makes sense to you, me and everyone else, that gives pubs and devs too much credit; game makers are not big picture thinkers and neither are the people who invest in those companies

-they will not take the risk of cutting $20 in the hopes of making it up with future DLC and larger sales volume; there is a large swath of gamers out there who never buy DLC (the average buy rate for console DLC is still pretty low) and the short term pain of $20 less for possible long term DLC gain and more sales volume will not be worthwhile to them (hence, the not big picture thinkers thing)

-Count on $60 WiiU games and around $75 for PS4/Xbox 540 games (that still may be locked to one user and chock full of online passes and holdback DLC).

What I'm more concern is not if the next gen retailed for $70-80 but amount of contents are removed to be sold as DLC. It's hard to get many gamers to pay $60+ for the game but easy to sell multiple $5-15 micro transaction later.
If you have to spend another $5 DLC, few think much about it especially if they like the game. Even $15 sounds expensive but if most of your friends have the $15 multiplayer maps, you probably will ended up spending the $15 DLC just to play with your friends. How often do you hear gamers who love to buy DLCs add up the micro transactions for the game? For married gamers, it's also easier to say you only spend $10 for a game than $60.

It's also becoming a standard practice to give more incentive for pre-order or first batch of the games. Those incentive items will be sold later as DLC. Another experiment I saw with Prototype 2 is it unlocks free DLCs based on calendar date which means if you buy the game several months later after the price has dropped, you will miss those free DLCs. If you want the DLCs, pay for them.

Eventually, whatever you pay the game at retail price only comes with a "sampler disc". It has Act 1, a lot of missing contents from Act 2 and "fake" or incomplete ending for Act 3. If you like the game, buy the rest of the missing contents from Act 2 as DLC and "real" or complete ending for Act 3. After that more DLCs to extent the game.

One good thing about more contents removed the disc to be sold as DLC. More X360 games can fit onto 1-2 discs. I have looked several games and if the pre-order/new game DLCs are to be on the disc, the game will require an additional disc.
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post #52 of 59 Old 05-07-2012, 02:34 PM - Thread Starter
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The Saga Continues....

http://games.yahoo.com/blogs/plugged...192535376.html

Summary: There are and will be more alternatives to $60 games.

Quote: "While established, major brands -- the likes of Call of Duty, God of War, Halo, and Madden -- are still thriving, smaller disc-based games that don't take off result in serious losses for the publisher."
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post #53 of 59 Old 05-07-2012, 02:51 PM
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The $60 gaming industry is a house of cards. It's still floundering and trying (futilely) to find some stability. All these added measures and incentives are just quick fixes to a more fundamental problem: like Tyrant says, market expansion has finally leveled off after 20 years of accelerated growth. But the old-guard in the industry is still acting like the increased revenue will be there, so budgets continue to grow in false anticipation of consumer growth.

Ubisoft and EA have reacted by moving aggressively into mobile and downloadable. Activision is still riding on Blizzard and CoD. Console manufacturers can keep selling machines and first-party pack-ins. But that's it. Most of the big development studios of 5-10 years ago have dissolved. IMO we're already in the post-blockbuster $60 game era. The only real industry players now are the shadows and ghosts of once-great franchises.

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post #54 of 59 Old 05-07-2012, 03:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PiratesCove View Post

The Saga Continues....

http://games.yahoo.com/blogs/plugged...192535376.html

Summary: There are and will be more alternatives to $60 games.

Quote: "While established, major brands -- the likes of Call of Duty, God of War, Halo, and Madden -- are still thriving, smaller disc-based games that don't take off result in serious losses for the publisher."

I agree that setting a fixed $60 for every retail game is a mistake. Isn't in Japan, the publisher can set different retail price for their games?

Free to play games aren't really free if the publisher wants to survive. The model is free if you just want to sample the game but once you want to get serious with the game like able to level up pass the cap, it's not free anymore.

I think "episodic model" isn't marketed correctly. Just because you know you have to pay for each episode or buy the entire game as a bundle, it's not really that different than many "complete" games (not Complete Edition that included all released DLCs). Sure there's an "ending" but the reality is there are many more DLCs to "continue" the game. So, is paying $60 for a "complete" game true while paying for each episode game isn't? I would call the "complete" game is more of an illusion.

Another issue of "episodic model" is some of the games haven't completed development when the 1st episode goes on sale. While it's safer for the developer to test the market to see if the early episodes will sell well to continue development, it's also telling the buyers if the "episodic model" for the game sells very poorly, their early episodes purchase may go to waste since they will never get a conclusion if the developers gave up the game development.

Next bigger issue with "episodic model" is for fast gamers. If it takes one month to release each episode, fast gamers either has to wait for almost a month for each episode or choose to wait until the entire game has been released. The later option would suggests in what I wrote in my previous issue, to the developer, the early episodes would appear to sell poorly. For myself, I would choose this option because I'll hate having to wait for x amount of time for the next episode to download.

Last issue depends on the preference of the gamer. Some don't mind buying download version. For myself, I still prefer to buy my games on disc (same as music) because it's not locked to the my account. For example, Back to the Future is a great "episodic" game but I waited until all the episodes came out. By then, the disc version also came out and I chose to buy the disc version (plus only disc version has Platinum trophy).

Back to the Future on retail disc was priced correctly, $20. I love the game and it was priced based on the length.
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post #55 of 59 Old 05-10-2012, 09:10 PM
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http://www.cinemablend.com/games/EA-...-80-42372.html

Another indication for many new games, it's really $60 + Day 1 DLC price. Some day, out of the box games will only contain a few chapters and everything else is sold as DLCs.

It's an interesting job being the game producer. Take a complete game, go through and start "tearing out" pages and pages of contents because they are potential DLCs profit. The more "pages" the producer can take out and still keep the main game "intact", the more profitable the game will be if the game still sells well. All the $60 game needs to contain is the main summary of the novel. You get the main point of the story and generally know what the story is about but the meat of the story are all missing.

I have seen some long movies that got cut for shorter TV version. The most interesting are "3 hour" long movies got cut down to less than "2 hours" for TV version. Watching the TV version, smaller and less critical scenes are gone for sure. Then, some subplot scenes completely disappeared. Secondary characters scenes are cut shorter or removed if isn't critical. If you don't remember or seen the theater version, you still get the main plot in the story but you feel like there are a lot of scenes missing all over the movie. And that's how to you do it with games.
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post #56 of 59 Old 05-10-2012, 09:26 PM
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Too many game out for $10-$40, why should anyone run out and pay $60 for Prototype 2? Many people play 1-4 games a year and those who play more have huge backlogs. It has little to do with the price and more to do with competition.

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post #57 of 59 Old 05-10-2012, 11:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tgable View Post

Too many game out for $10-$40, why should anyone run out and pay $60 for Prototype 2? Many people play 1-4 games a year and those who play more have huge backlogs. It has little to do with the price and more to do with competition.

For gamers who are easily sold by the marketing and hypes. That's why you often read those gamers said "can't wait to play it" and gets upset if the games get delayed. Also, for fans when the game is sequel.

I only bought two games on day 1, ie. ME2 and ME3 in the last 3 years. The rest are most less than $30.
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post #58 of 59 Old 05-11-2012, 08:22 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vortex3D View Post

It's an interesting job being the game producer. Take a complete game, go through and start "tearing out" pages and pages of contents because they are potential DLCs profit. The more "pages" the producer can take out and still keep the main game "intact", the more profitable the game will be if the game still sells well. All the $60 game needs to contain is the main summary of the novel. You get the main point of the story and generally know what the story is about but the meat of the story are all missing.

As nefarious as pricing and content practices are, they aren't quite that nefarious. The entire development plan has to be laid out well before production actually starts. This includes any DLC or additional content. So nothing is "torn out." Things just simply aren't put in in the first place.

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post #59 of 59 Old 05-15-2012, 05:40 PM - Thread Starter
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So far Max Payne 3 is proving its worth as a "$60" Game.

The single player is really good, great visuals, nice voice work and very fun gameplay.
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