Activision, Take-Two, and Sony are all pushing a new $69.99 standard price for PS5 games. Now Sony's Jim Ryan says this $10 hike is a justified trade off for the hours of play offered by the higher-end experiences.
Game prices are rising for the first time in over a decade. PS5 and Xbox Series X games are jumping to $69.99, a sizable 17% premium over the last few generations. Publicly, companies have had two reasons behind the hike: rising development costs, and amazing interactive content. Sony believes the latter is enough to uphold the price hike. Fans seem to disagree.
In a recent interview with The Telegraph, Sony Interactive Entertainment boss Jim Ryan not only defends but seems to assert $69.99 is the new norm for the bigger AAA PS5 exclusives. When asked if Ryan thought the price hike was fair, he said:
"Yes, yes, I do. If you measure the hours of entertainment provided by a video game, such as Demon's Souls compared to any other form of entertainment, I think that's a very straightforward comparison to draw."
Fans aren't so sure. A lot of the responses in this ResetERA forum post disagree with Ryan.
Ryan's words echo those of Take-Two Interactive CEO Strauss Zelnick, who also defended the $10 jump:
"There hasn't been a price increase for frontline titles for a really long time, despite the fact that it costs a great deal more to make those titles," Take-Two Interactive CEO Strauss Zelnick told GamesIndustry.biz in August.
"And we think with the value we offer consumers...and the kind of experience you can really only have on these next-generation consoles, that the price is justified. But it's easy to say that when you're delivering extraordinary quality, and that's what our company prides itself on doing."
There's a silver lining. Sony will likely continuing offering free PS4-to-PS5 upgrades for cross-gen exclusives. These games should still keep the $59.99 price and PS5 owners can effectively grab them for the standard MSRP.
Sony plans to support the PS4 for at least another 3 years, and will release games on both PS4 and PS5. Titles like Spider-Man Miles Morales and Horizon Forbidden West, for example, are cross-gen games.
Other publishers like EA, Ubisoft, and Capcom are hesitant about charging $70 for their games.