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GivenTheOkieDoke

Digital Games

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Smiling_Cobra sort of sparked me to write this because of his "Charging for Downloadable Content is a Scam" discussion.

Just a quick little blog on more or less a question about digital games. Now I own a PlayStation 3 and PSP Go so I am not sure if there is a difference on the XBox 360. I was out looking at some of the new PS3 games and seeing what UMD cards I could buy. I didn't really pay much attention until I was in the PSP isle that the Downloadable games were the exact same price as the retail hard copy. How does that make sense? Maybe I have it all wrong but isn't the whole reason for making games digital to save price on the cost of manufacturing a hard copy? Shouldn't we be getting a discount then since were not paying for the full thing?

Am I right on this or did I miss something? I just figure I should be getting a few $'s back or at least an explanation. The only explanation I could think up was that the game companies may think that since the digital is cheaper then no one would buy the retail copy. But that argument should get thrown out since you can buy any game cheaper online, or buy it used and people still choose to buy it new at best buy or gamestop.

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  1. Dhalamar's Avatar
    The only games I ever buy digitally are on Steam when I catch them on sale. :P

    I don't mind digital copies all that much (though, yeah, I do agree they should be cheaper) ... but the WAY some of these companies do it is utterly retarded.

    The Xbox 360 and Steam are the only ones who actually do it right, and the 360 has some marks against it.

    On the Wii and the Nintendo DSi (and up) those games are tied to the system itself. Which means if you either upgrade or have to replace the system for whatever reason, you have to buy all that shit again.

    On the PS3, you can only download them a certain number of times before you have to buy them again.

    And on the 360, the games are tied to your Xbox Live account, which means you can download them however many times you want. But WHEN you inevitably get a new system, if you're not logged into Xbox Live (either Gold or Silver) those games only run in trial mode. There is a way to get around that through Microsoft, but it can only be done once a year or something like that.

    Steam on the other hand, it doesn't matter WHAT system you're on. So long as you're logged into Steam, you can get your shit.

    And of course there's Good Old Games that has no DRM whatsoever. You buy it, you do what you want with it. You have to download it again? Fine. Log into your GOG account and download it.
  2. GivenTheOkieDoke's Avatar
    Yeah I have a few games on PC I got from Steam its real nice to use. I normally don't like Digitally downloading games but for my PSP its awesome because I don't have to bring a bag full of games with me.

    I didn't know about the limited number of times on the PS3. Thats good to know.
  3. Dhalamar's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by GivenTheOkieDoke
    Yeah I have a few games on PC I got from Steam its real nice to use. I normally don't like Digitally downloading games but for my PSP its awesome because I don't have to bring a bag full of games with me.

    I didn't know about the limited number of times on the PS3. Thats good to know.
    Well, in regards to the PS3, I don't know if that's for EVERY game or if it's the same for every game or whatever. I've just heard about it. Personally, Sony hasn't given me a reason to even WANT either a PS3 or a PSPGo.

    Literally the only reason I even have a PS3 on layaway right now is for Little Big Planet. None of the other games really interest me that much. And, with a few exceptions, it usually gets botched ports of 360 games anyway.
  4. GivenTheOkieDoke's Avatar
    Yeah I have supported Sony since the Walkman tape player. So it was a no brainer to get a PS3 for me. That and Gran Turismo 5. Little Big Plant is great if you play online with 4 other friends.
  5. Dhalamar's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by GivenTheOkieDoke
    Yeah I have supported Sony since the Walkman tape player. So it was a no brainer to get a PS3 for me. That and Gran Turismo 5. Little Big Plant is great if you play online with 4 other friends.
    heh Yeah, the unfortunate thing about GT5 is the fact that it isn't going to do well, even when it does, and you know it will for Sony people. But however many years in development with numerous delays, and a budget of over 60 million dollars. They'll have to sell more copies of that game than there are Wii's in existence. And Sony just doesn't have that kind of player base.

    That, and the multiplatform owners, some of them already have Forza and probably aren't even going to bother with GT5 ... granted that won't be ALL of them. But still, that's going to affect sales.

    And no, I'm not an MS fanboy (I've actually been playing my PS2 more than my 360 lately lol) nor am I a sony fanboy. Or Nintendo fanboy. I'm in it for the games, regardless of the platform.

    Which is part of the reason I never bothered to get a PS3 until I put one on layaway at the pawn shop, the games that I give a shit about just aren't there. I never have liked the Metal Gear series (though I can totally respect them). I don't care about Killzone because the first game COULD have been great but isn't ... the only reason why I bought Killzone 2 is because I found it at the pawn shop for 15 bucks. Don't care about Uncharted that much. Little Big Planet is about it, and that's just sheer curiosity. Certainly not a system seller.

    I'm personally glad I got my 360 purely because the PS3, in most cases, gets botched ports of the games with a few exceptions (Final Fantasy 13 being the most recent and glaring one. And that isn't because of the technology ... it's purely because Blu-Ray discs hold more. That's it.).

    But the games I love like Ghostbusters and Bayonetta just got utterly fucked on the PS3, along with The Orange Box. And those are only the REALLY obvious ones. Other times, like in Call of Duty or Fallout ... or Dead Space it's little things like textures and lighting. If I'm going to play a game, I want to play it in the best way possible. And while those PS3 cell processors are damned fast, the graphics hardware is just BARELY below what the 360 has. So it kind of evens out in the end.

    Which is why when I eventually DO get that PS3 in there, I'm going to fucking get rid of Sonic's Ultimate Genesis Collection for the 360 and get it for the PS3. Because while the analog setup on the Sony controller sucks for shooters (my thumbs always bang together and shit on those things), god damn ... they actually have a directional pad that actually WORKS!! :P And I'll never touch SF4 on the 360 again thanks to that directional pad.
  6. Dhalamar's Avatar
    Of course I could care less about a lot of the MS exclusives. Halo is a pathetic shooter, I don't like Call of Duty (except for 3) ... and while that isn't an exclusive the DLC typically comes out before it does for the other platforms. Gears of War is just too slow for me. Perfect Dark Zero was, and still is, a fucking joke. While I can respect the Forza series, I really don't care. I played Forza 2 for about 10 minutes then got bored.

    Although I will admit to being a HUGE fan of the Xbox Live Indie Games service if you haven't seen my thread in the Microsoft section of the forums with all the shit I've got for the 360. lol
  7. Smiling_Cobra's Avatar
    The biggest reason why the games online are priced exactly the same as a retail chain is due to one reason: Competition. If the prices of UMDs were cheaper online than in the store than Sony would be losing huge buyers. Why undercut the people that you're selling thousands and thousands of copies to? What surprises me is that UMDs downloaded online are not slightly more expensive, due to their convenience. Logically, it doesn't make sense but from a business standpoint it does. Plus, the profit margins on video games are razor slim (anywhere between $1-3 a game) and the money is made when a system is sold (PS3, PSP, XBOX360 etc) and accessories ($100 HDMI wire anyone?).
  8. Dhalamar's Avatar
    Actually the companies sell those systems at a loss, that's the way it was back in the 8 bit to 16 bit days, and that's still the way it is now. Especially with Sony, they STILL don't make a profit off those systems. All the profits come from the games, and that's generally what keeps the system afloat because they sell a hell of a lot more games than systems.

    The only company probably making money off their consoles is Nintendo because they use such outdated hardware for ALL their systems.

    And the price of UMDs (and most games for that matter) is almost always cheaper online through outlets like Amazon.
  9. GivenTheOkieDoke's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Smiling_Cobra
    The biggest reason why the games online are priced exactly the same as a retail chain is due to one reason: Competition. If the prices of UMDs were cheaper online than in the store than Sony would be losing huge buyers. Why undercut the people that you're selling thousands and thousands of copies to? What surprises me is that UMDs downloaded online are not slightly more expensive, due to their convenience. Logically, it doesn't make sense but from a business standpoint it does. Plus, the profit margins on video games are razor slim (anywhere between $1-3 a game) and the money is made when a system is sold (PS3, PSP, XBOX360 etc) and accessories ($100 HDMI wire anyone?).
    Yes that was my point as well. But like Dhalamar said sites like amazon.com almost always have games for cheaper than stores like gamestop, or best buy. And most of the time you can get a deal for free shipping. Yet people still opt to by the game for sometimes much more at a retail store. So I don't think that making them cheaper digitally would hinder UMD sales. And if it does whats the matter anyway? It seems like there trying to push the PSP to a digital handheld anyway.
  10. Dhalamar's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by GivenTheOkieDoke
    Yes that was my point as well. But like Dhalamar said sites like amazon.com almost always have games for cheaper than stores like gamestop, or best buy. And most of the time you can get a deal for free shipping. Yet people still opt to by the game for sometimes much more at a retail store. So I don't think that making them cheaper digitally would hinder UMD sales. And if it does whats the matter anyway? It seems like there trying to push the PSP to a digital handheld anyway.
    They're not trying really hard to push it as much of anything really. They even give the developers the choice whether or not to release a digital version of their game on a case by case basis. Konami recently chose against that with Silent Hill : Shattered Memories in Europe.

    The release of the thing was insanity to begin with, and was doomed from the start. The original PSP costs less, one can just stick a memory stick drive in there and run the digital stuff. And all those people who already have the UMDs for their games, if they want to play them on their shiny new PSPGo they have to buy them again. Being able to play old PS1 games on it isn't enough of a push for most people to buy the thing if they've already got one of the older ones. The UMDs are almost always cheaper in any store because the stores are desperately trying to get rid of their back catalog due to people buying the DS over Sony's shiny little black handheld.

    Considering it just doesn't have the games, the support from the developers OR the public in the handheld market, they didn't even have any REASON to release the PSPGo. Maybe it's because UMDs are slow, unrealiable and near useless. Who knows.

    And people see the occasional new PSP game come out (on the rare times they do) and they still release them on UMDs ... sure their are a lot of indie titles released that obviously aren't, but people can run those on the old machine.

    They're trying to compete with two other machines in the handheld market (the DS and the iPod Touch) and losing badly with overpriced hardware, overpriced games compared to the other two, a complete LACK of games compared to either of the other two and they're just running into a brick wall with the thing.

    Hell, even the iPod games as cheap as they are make more money than PSP games. lol

    They should just let it die a quiet, dignified death, consider it a failure (or wait till the market is poised to be a little more friendly to it instead of just being confused over an overpriced machine that doesn't do as much as the cheaper old ones) and work on the digital stuff for the old PSP. Upgrade the memory capacity of the thing, make it sleeker, maybe add the other analog and the button it's missing for the PS1 games and call it a day.

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