Unpopular opinion: Capcom boss believes video game prices are too low

Actually, he is being very misleading, everything considered. I actually bought a Genesis game that was almost 80eur(converted) at the time, one of the few extra expensive, but these were *cartriges*. These had an additional cost on top, which increased with capacity used also.
Many games are now distributed digitally, with reduced middleman and shipping and handling costs.

What also enables further price stability is the fact that a AAA game in the 2000s was a success if bought in the 200-300k unit range. Today? Many sell 5 or 6 million units within weeks, some average 10 million over multiple platforms. So, of course you would spend more in producing said titles.

For instance, HL1, a game which was regarded as one of the best games ever released:

"According to Newell, Half-Life was budgeted with the expectation of lifetime sales of around 180,000 copies.[74] However, it was a surprise hit.[74] In the United States, Half-Life debuted at #8 on PC Data's weekly PC game sales chart for the November 15–21 period, with an average retail price (ARP) of $49....

In January 1999, Half-Life debuted at #3 on Chart-Track's PC game sales rankings for the United Kingdom,[86] and remained in PC Data's weekly top 10 for the entire month, peaking at #4.[87][88][89][90][91] By January 19, after two full months of availability, global sales of Half-Life surpassed 500,000 units."

HL went on to sell much more over the years due to mods and after price drops, but they were budgeting a game like that for 200k units. In 5 years, Quake 2 (1997) had sold 2 million units. Halo 2 sold 2.4M in 24h.
Wind it further and see Call of Duty sold 4.5M in 10 years, but MW1(2013) sold 15M in six years. MW reboot (2019) sold 30M in 2 years! Absolutely staggering increase in sales.

So, I would say games *were expensive* way back in the 90s and 200s, perhaps driving further piracy and now have been at a price where more people can buy them and still drive multiples of the sales they enjoyed.
Same for console hardware. For the UK, minimum wage increased 220% from 1999 to 2019 but console prices have increased some 66% for similar hardware capabilities.
This is good, technology is inherently deflationary and that is how the world keeps evolving, otherwise we'd still be using very slow computers with text prompts.
Many games are becoming more and more expensive but don't add up to the enjoyable gaming experience..
of course, rising game prices are common things to do today, but developers must create good games that provide fun gaming experiences for players.
thus what the player gets is equivalent to the price paid..
for those who have (a lot of) money, then they can buy games as they like..
for me, I get either games at discounted prices or free games that are good, fun, and enjoyable..
Tsujimoto is correct. AAA titles today have the exact same price as what I paid for boxed copies of Ultima 6 and Wing Commander in 1990. If corrected for inflation from then, games would be over double what is currently charged.
Except for there's a massively larger customer base, getting the games running on your platform takes no effort or expertise, there's no physical media/material to distribute, they don't have to fight for physical shelf space, and they can advertise their product to potential customers on a much larger scale than ever before.

The prices should be going down, not up.

Yup. People just don't get it. Neither inflation nor anything else.

Then they say but but the market has exploded. Yes, and so did production cost. You know how many people made the original Doom? 6. And in how much time? 1 year.

Compare that to Doom Eternal? 1302 people and 4 years. And developer salaries didn't exactly collapse since the 90s. Go figure.

You can wish for 'cheap' games, but as long as you do, you'll get all that precious microtransaction and loot box and DLC and unfinished, rushed games, and all the other cr@p.
Doom sold ~1.1 million copies between 1993 and 1999. Doom Eternal sold 3 million digital copies between 2020 and 2023. Three times the sales in half the time. Adjusting for inflation, both games sold for about the same price. This isn't even factoring in DLC and other add-on sales that go with Doom Eternal.
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Capcom just made the biggest predatory move with SF6 that I can remember in a long time.

They charge new characters 350 Fighter coins, but you can only buy Fighter coins in bundle of 250 Fighter coins. 250 Fighter coins cost 5$, so you need to buy 500 coins for a single character.

They were charging 750 Fighter coins per TMNT promotion costumes, meaning 15$ per turtle costume...

And, after buying the core game, you need a 30$ season pass for having the full cast of characters, which you need to play a fighting game for being able to learn those characters in training mode.

In the end, the game is going to cost you, over 5 seasons, around 200$... and that`s without any micro-transactions...

Capcom... you know how to screw your fans...
I totally agree, I took a retrospective look at one game in particular. A game that I think I spent way to much money on to enjoy it. Wait for it, Rockband 4. Been a big fan of rythym games, take your Guitar Heros, Beatsaber, Rockband, the lot. But the most egregious example that comes to MY mind is RB4. To play songs that were available in previous versions of the series, you pay approximately 4 to 5 dollars per pack for an artist, over time I noticed (at the time I wasnt neccesarily concerned about my wallet, which has bit be in the a**) that I had spent 150 dollars...on a game where you play along to music. Simply just to have fun to get the songs I wanted to play and enjoy I had to spend 150 dollars.
Even more shocking is MW2, I have lost track of how many seasons there have been and how many weapon blueprints that make the guns even more powerful, that are LOCKED behind a paywall. It seems every week we get a "Mid Season Refresh" and we still get locked out of most of the good content via a paywall.
Live Service video games are scams.
Personally, I found prices too high. Average $50 tendency $60 and pushing around $100 for a regular game a deluxe version $120. That doesn't include micro transactions, extra package or DLC. They are not making enough money to pay overpaid managers, I will suggest you move your business to India, Brazil, Russia or China, pay less to your staff and keep your BIG wages for your managers
Totally agree with him*, just one small detail:

- let's have double the wages for the workers
- NO microtransactions whatsoever, no DLC
- FULL game at launch
- NO more botched releases

Yeah, 100 USD for Half Life 3 with LAN, modding, no MTX? Bring it!

Give me something original, bug free at launch, fully installable with a physical disc, a fat instruction manual with maps and lore, local multiplayer. Advertise the hell out of it. No DLC, no microtransactions, etc. Then I'll think about paying $60 for it. I won't of course, but I'll think about it.
Everyone in the world thinks they are underpaid. They could raise their prices, but basic economics says that won't necessarily give you more profit and fewer people would get to enjoy your game. After spending all that money and effort to make a game, do you really want to exclude everyone except the very rich from being able to enjoy your work?

It would be nice if there weren't several different platforms to develop for. Wouldn't it be nice if all the consoles were just customized pc's so you didn't have to make a game for 4 or 5 different platforms? Console companies are putting a huge burden on you to develop for different platforms just so they can lock you and your customers in, so that they can lock in profits. You're giving Sony, Microsoft, and Nintendo a cut of your sale and they are doing nothing but making things more difficult for you by fragmenting the market.
Yeah, that's what it is. Games aren't priced high enough. That's why I'm not buying any. Put them prices up and I'm much more likely to buy more of them....
Seriously though. My last full price game I bought was Fallout 4 and having got burned with that one, I swore I would never pay full price for any video game ever again, and I haven't. I bought Dying light enhanced edition yesterday for €8.99, which was worth a try at that price and it's only the second game that I have bought this year. The other was easy red 2.
I tend to look at indie games and ones on sale at €25 or less. That way, if I don't enjoy them, I don't feel like I've been ripped off too badly.
I don't think his statement is meant to cover all games. Top AAA games have been slowly increasing their prices when using the PC platform. I think this is more of a subtle shot over the bow of Sony, Microsoft and Nintendo. The big three don't just set the price, they get a cut too. This has to cut into a developers margins. It's the same system that record publishers use. Problem is that recording costs haven't ballooned like game development costs have.

Selling console video games are kind of like selling a product in Walmart. Massive sales, but possibly with razor thin margins pretty much negating the increased sales. So as development costs increase those margins could be getting slimmer and slimmer. It'd be interesting to see what a developer gets from each unit sale. Maybe it's more than just being greedy and it's a faustian bargain in the end, just like Walmart. Can't afford to ignore the market segment, but struggling to make a profit when you don't.