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Microsoft not ready to commit to $69.99 priced first-party games

Microsoft may eventually join Activision, Sony, and Take-Two in charging $69.99 for its next-gen games...but for now they're $60.

@DeekeTweak
Published Wed, Nov 18 2020 5:37 PM CST

Microsoft could raise the price of its first-party Series S/X exclusives to $69.99, but for now they're staying at $59.99.

Microsoft not ready to commit to $69.99 priced first-party games 14 | TweakTown.com

While publishers like Activision, Take-Two, and even Sony are charging a $69.99 premium for next-gen titles, Microsoft still maintains the normal $59.99 MSRP. As it stands, Microsoft isn't ready to announce details. After all, there's no Xbox Series X/S exclusives on the market right now--next-gen Xbox exclusives won't happen until 2022 or thereabouts. Other publishers like EA, Capcom, and Ubisoft have all avoided the price jump. But how long will this last?

At the recent Jefferies Interactive Entertainment conference earlier this month, Microsoft CFO Tim Stuart says it's "about time" for a price increase, but also avoids confirming a $69.99 MSRP for new games. Stuart also says Game Pass is an extra layer of monetization that could help offset a new premium cost.

From a consumer standpoint, if you're a game creator, games are getting more expensive to create. They're driving revenue growth as well, and they're looking for opportunities to go create more monetization for the support of that content creation.

And that's when you see a little bit of the game pricing going up. So your example is $60 going to $70 on some games. Prices have not gone up in -- what, for a couple of generations now, so it's not unheard of to see things like this going on.

We're not making specific announcements on first-party pricing yet. So we'll do that sort of in due time. I think if publishers can find a price point that works for their audience, defines a price point that works for the maximization of, I'll say users and revenue, because you want to drive engagement. I talk about engagement equals currency a lot.

But also, when we think about Game Pass on our side, it's another outlet for our content creators to go find new users, to find a way to monetize those users that may not have played their games.

So the example I give here is for Grand Theft Auto, which has been in Game Pass. You sell the game for $60. There are users that wouldn't have paid $60 for that game. But now that it's in Game Pass, they are finding new users that otherwise wouldn't have played that game.

The kind of the side joke I'll give is, the last time there was a price increase was, what, 7 or 8 years ago or something. So time value of money says, says it's about time anyway. But that's kind of a side point.

At the same event, Stuart also strongly hinted that future Bethesda titles would be timed exclusive on Xbox and PC, possibly with exclusive content and performance/features not available on PS5.

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Derek is absorbed with the intersection of technology and gaming, and is always looking forward to new advancements. With over six years in games journalism under his belt, Derek aims to further engage the gaming sector while taking a peek under the tech that powers it. He hopes to one day explore the stars in No Man's Sky with the magic of VR.

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