Jim Boone feels that the current pricing scheme stifles innovation.
In a recent interview with OXM, Saint’s Row IV senior producer Jim Boone spoke out against the “unbelievab[ly]” high price of games currently being released on current gen consoles, usually priced at $60. Boone believes that mainstream console games cost entirely too much to produce, and consequently, are priced higher than what many gamers can afford to pay.
“We’re all hardcore gamers at Volition, and at the end of the day I don’t care how much a developer spent on a game – it doesn’t matter to me. Its $60 of my money either way, so I don’t care if he only spent $80 million versus $200 million. What’s the best game – that’s what’s going to get my money. But that makes it really tough, because in my opinion gamers buy fewer games because of these $60 price points. If I’m going to buy six games a year then I’m probably just going to buy six of those $200 million games and call it a day – I don’t have to worry about anything else.”
He went on to add that this phenomenon forces game developers to be more conservative:
“You can’t really innovate much any more, because the games are so expensive publishers don’t want you to take chances. That means you’ve got to do the best you possibly can and spend a ton of money or you’re going to do things that possibly won’t be the best they can be, in which case people won’t buy it and they’ll just go buy the game that did cost all that money.”
But, Boone acknowledged that with the incoming next gen console boom, there is hope for change:
“But now with all these different sorts of platforms – even with next gen now – I’m hopeful that this means they can come up with different price points. It’s certainly the implication from what we’re hearing from Microsoft and Sony – that there’s more ways to distribute games and more ways to price games.”
How do you feel about current console pricing? Let us know in the comments below.