Days Gone dev: If you love a game and want a sequel, buy it at full price

midian182

Posts: 6,658   +59
Staff member
A hot potato: Are you one of those people who rarely, if ever, buy a game at full price, preferring instead to wait for discount events or its arrival on a subscription service? It's a practice familiar to most of us, but one developer says that if you really love a game and want a sequel, you should "buy it at f****** full price."

As reported by VGC, Days Gone creative director and writer John Garvin made the comments on God of War creator David Jaffe's YouTube show. He was asked if the game's arrival on Sony's PlayStation Plus service had resulted in a "meaningful uptick of engagement" for the post-apocalyptic action-adventure.

"I do have an opinion on something that your audience may find of interest, and it might piss some of them off," Garvin replied. "If you love a game, buy it at f****** full price. I can't tell you how many times I've seen gamers say 'yeah, I got that on sale, I got it through PS Plus, whatever'."

The problem with this view, of course, is how are people going to know if they love a game without playing it? Jaffe posed this conundrum to Garvin, who replied with: "I'm just saying, you don't, but don't complain if a game doesn't get a sequel if it wasn't supported at launch."

"It's like, God of War got whatever number millions of sales at launch and, you know, Days Gone didn't. [I'm] just speaking for me personally as a developer. I don't work for Sony; I don't know what the numbers are."

Bloomberg earlier this month reported that developer Sony Bend made a pitch for Days Gone 2 in 2019 but was turned down due to the original's mixed reception and long development time.

Garvin also talked about piracy and torrent sites and their effect on developers.

"I can tell you that when we were doing [Syphon Filter] Dark Mirror [on PSP], we got so f***** on Dark Mirror because piracy was a thing and Sony wasn't really caught up on what piracy was doing to sales," he said. "And we would show them torrents, a torrent site had 200,000 copies of Dark Mirror being downloaded. If I remember it right, the numbers could be wrong, but regardless, I was pissed about it then. I was like, 'this is money out of my pocket.'"

"So I think the uptick in engagement with the game is not as important as, did you buy the game at full price?" Garvin summarized. "Because if you did, then that's supporting the developers directly."

Days Gone mostly received average reviews when it launched on the PS4 in 2019, though it does have a user score of 8.3 on Metacritic. It loses its PlayStation exclusivity on May 18 when it arrives on PC, bringing a host of platform-specific features, including 21:9 ultra-wide monitor support, unlocked frame rates, and Freaker hordes that can now number up to 500 in size.

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amghwk

Posts: 1,015   +926
I let OTHERS pay the full price and buy the games with at least 75% off sales after a year or later.

As long as there are suckers pre-ordering, this works for me every time.

The best bargains are those GOTY or Gold editions that go on deep sale much later - these are the ones that gamers should play - finished complete games. Not the alpha or beta games being released nowadays with countless patches and "DLCs" that follow.

And lets face it - games nowadays....almost all are sequels or sequels of sequels or remakes or rehashes or "HD remakes" .... and so on... gaming ingenuity died long time ago. Other than graphics repainting, there's nothing much going on nowadays. **Yawn**
 
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Neatfeatguy

Posts: 255   +347
Buy a game at full price, huh....?

Rarely does a newly released game warrant such a kind gesture from gamers. Most games are pushed out and released too early which means gamers are left with game breaking bugs, glitches and piss poor performance. Any gamer that's been around for a while should know better not to support a newly released game if they don't want run into an unfinished game right out the door. Usually 3 months after release is a good point to pick up a new game - devs have had time to squash some bugs and iron out performance issues.

On the other hand, why pay full price for a game when there are so many games and developers out there?

Personally I couldn't afford to buy half a dozen new games for $60 a pop (that's roughly $385 after tax) for 6 games. I won't have time to play all 6, at best I might get around to beating 1, maybe 2, and the rest will sit there unplayed. That's just not a good way to spend my money....it's more like a waste. Even if I were to buy 1 game at new, released retail price of $60, by the time I get through it and purchase the next game that interested me it will probably be on sale or already marked down by 50%.

Why spend nearly $400 on 6 games when I can turn around and pick up three times that many (or even more) when they're on sale or reduced down from the $60 retail price?

In all honesty, I already have so many games in my backlog that it's just not logical by any means to purchase a game at full price. By the time I get around to adding a new game it's already been out for 1-3 years and already reduced in price by upwards of 75% of the original retail. It makes zero sense for me to spend $60 on a new game just to let it sit there for months and months, unplayed, due to my short amount of free time or backlog I'm still working through.

John Garvin, what a entitled little prick.
 

Dimitriid

Posts: 381   +654
It's no surprise a dev has this attitude: studios depend on bonuses and upfront, day 1 sales to make significant money. Once the game has been out for a year, sort of the standard for a game to start turning up on discounts, I bet the publisher pockets like 90% of those profits if you adjusts for the initial sales tied bonuses.

My only response is that it sucks that your publishers give you a raw deal, maybe negotiate a better intial pricing instead of "60 USD plus season pass and micro transactions too" and maybe you'll get more money.

Gamers waiting for a sale to pick up your game just means two things: your game sucks or your publisher priced it too high. Yes even if it goes for "standard" 60 USD if your game didn't warrant AAA pricing then it's not going to sell well, not without AAA marketing and hype.
 

noel24

Posts: 717   +850
"Yes.
In other news: RTX 3090Ti has finally replaced rtx 2090Ti on top of Steam survey for most popular video card. Next: after years of study scientists found out the secret of the phenomenon of money growing on trees."

I suppose when You get to the top of the food chain, You loose the touch with reality and You should not make public statements concerning spending money, for the sake of You company (or Your country, if You're politician)
 

winjer

Posts: 139   +487
Considering how many games are released in a broken, incomplete state, buying a game at launch, for full price is bad for consumers. And "Days Gone" is one of these games that were released with lots bugs and technical problems.
Not only that, but most games are released with only a part of it's content. The rest being released later in DLCs, micro-transactions, pre-order bonus, etc.

If the gamming industry wants more people to buy games at full price, them they must do their part and release full games at launch, without a ton of bugs and problems.

Currently, it's much better for consumers to wait. After a year or so, you can buy the GOTY edition of most games, with all content, patches and bug fixes and a much lower price.
 

Avro Arrow

Posts: 1,130   +1,258
TechSpot Elite
How the hell do we know if we love a game before we buy it? I bought AC Odyssey at a discounted price because that's what uPlay was selling it for. Sure, in hindsight, I would have DEFINITELY paid full price for it and I am planning to pay full price for Far Cry 6. However, a lot of the time, we buy a game because it's on sale and when that happens, paying full price for it is no longer an option.

Too many users have been burned too many times by paying full price for a game and the game itself is garbage. Duke Nukem anyone?
 

George Keech

Posts: 26   +30
I love how different this seems to be from Xbox's way of thinking. Obviously it is a different business model but by the sounds of things Days Gone would do well on game pass if it get long term engagement but no one buying up front?
 

Cycloid Torus

Posts: 4,729   +1,533
It rather seems that there is an 'over-supply' of hyped, buggy, incomplete, rushed at launch titles. This is what drives the price down. While a game may be a perfected gem at launch, this overwhelming state of the industry is likely to drag it down.

Maybe a re-think by the publishers of what they could do better will result in an improvement.
 

Avro Arrow

Posts: 1,130   +1,258
TechSpot Elite
People are so worried about the gaming industry crashing, I'm over here worried that it won't crash.

The whole scene needs a thorough threshing.
I completely agree. The whole industry has been stupidly out of hand for years. Greedy corporates have thrown unrealistic deadlines at developers, making them work like indentured slaves for ludicrous hours because the people in charge have no clue what is required for a game to be done properly.

Interestingly, the very progressive labour laws in Quebec don't allow this kind of abuse. I think that game studios in Quebec like Eidos Montreal along with Ubisoft's Montreal and Quebec City studios are showing that treating the developers like human beings yields phenomenal results. One only needs to point at extremely successful gaming series like Deus Ex, Tomb Raider, Assassin's Creed and Far Cry to show that you don't need to be slave drivers to make fantastic products.
 
Considering how these days games are in a terrible state when released, buying a game at launch (or pre-ordering) is one of the dumbest thing to do.


The only damn comment on here that is intelligently thought out and relevant... I agree completely! I wouldn't mind buying a game at launch, and I would even pay full price in a pre-order, but ONLY if I knew for 100% certainty that the game would be without bugs and glitches. That's not fair to the buyers.
 

Michiel

Posts: 67   +35
These kind of comments are just kind of embarrassing. I mean you can't blame the consumer for trying to get the best deals available. Gaming is a very competitive industry and there are soooo many games we can all spend our money on, not to mention other entertainment. And then there's the whole issue with broken, buggy games being released. If you want people to only buy your game at full price, go work for Nintendo. Otherwise, the market is what it is. If your game isn't getting the financing for a sequel, then it kinda means it just wasn't popular enough or good enough. As a developer you can also choose to make a smaller game if you have less money coming in.
 

Danny101

Posts: 1,608   +690
I would surmise the opposite strategy. Sell it initially at a lower introductory price to increase sales. If the reaction is good, you can raise the price as demand increases. Then when demand begins to drop off, you lower the price again. Similar to how hotel rental rates are based on occupancy, while game sale price is based on demand (and quality I might add). The initial sales of the game will likely have bugs in it and so a lower price will match quality. As the bugs are fixed, the quality rises and may actually be worth the higher demand price. Those who purchased early got a discount for being the guinea pigs. As creators one would think they would be more creative in the marketing of their wares.
 
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texasrattler

Posts: 1,124   +523
If I have to buy a game at $60
/full price then I better not be getting errors, slow loading or any other bs that a dev should have fixed before launching.
Otherwise I don't want to hear some dev complain about money when the product isn't even complete. I ain't no beta tester, I'm a damn consumer.
 

pcnthuziast

Posts: 1,015   +706
The only paradigm that ever matters is class, rich vs poor. As technology negates the need for human labor, the percentage of any population which could reasonably, objectively, be labeled as useless, will naturally increase. As this happens and the ruling class's ability to use the poor in whatever capacity, for their own ends, will lessen and when they have no use for the poor they certainly won't be trying to take care of and support useless bodies so the next logical step will be to cull the useless.