I've touched on this subject a few times now, but let's get a bit more serious. Gaming is a multi-billion dollar industry that has some of the best talent at its finger tips and in my opinion, it is pissed away in low quality, over-priced games.
This isn't the 90s anymore; the gaming industry is thriving and is getting bigger by the month. There are so many platforms to play on, so many developers and corporations who virtually control the industry. They want quick money, and lots of it. If a game doesn't make $100's of millions, or in some cases, billions of dollars, the game is deemed a failure.
Not every game needs to sell 10 million copies to be a success. There are plenty of games that are under $10 that are amazing games to play, different, funny; they have emotion and give you an attachment to the game - it's great. There are also great spectacle games that cost $100, yet only last 6 hours and feel like a beta version of the game.
Back in the day of Sega and Nintendo, did we need Firmware upgrades for our consoles? How about weekly patches and updates to the games? I can understand this on the PC, an ever-changing, ever-evolving platform, but a console that doesn't change its specs (I'm looking at you 360, PS3, Wii) require constant Firmware updates and patches to games.
Don't game developers bug test anymore? Is it because publishers want the games out on the market ASAP to make money? My money is on the latter. Getting the games out onto the market ASAP seems to be the goal of publishers these days - as long as it's there to buy, people will buy it.
Times are changing, get on the train or watch it pass
This needs to change; there needs to be an iTunes-like change to the gaming industry, as iTunes completely changed the music industry. This is where tiered-pricing comes into play. Should an indie game be charged at $60? Should a game made for kids be $60? What about AAA titles?
AAA titles should be charged at higher prices because of their budgets, etc. New games without the backing of the community should have their prices adjusted. Yes, you're not selling $1 billion worth, but you're moving more quantity, getting your name into the homes and most of all, hearts of gamers around the world. Think Minecraft, Super Meat Boy, Angry Birds, etc.
These games sold in the millions of copies, yet were impulse-purchase price territory. If next-gen consoles include a cloud-based purchasing system, you'd already have your credit card details stored in the cloud, which means cheaper games would get impulse bought very easily. AAA titles could be purchased and even tiered in the way that, if you have 100 friends and 20 of them own a game, maybe they (whoever offered the service) could see they'll have more of a chance selling the game to you, if you had said 20 friends who also play it.
They could tell this on the server-side and offer you the game cheaper (say 20% off) which would give an incentive to purchase the game. Just look at Steam's holiday sales - their numbers fly through the roof when specials are on.