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xBox live games, ever "On Sale"?

Combatcolin

Standard Member
Looking into buying a 360 soon-ish, but one thing has bugged me for a while.

Are the prices for the download games the same? Are there any sales?

If i want to buy Halo 3 there are literally 100's of retail and on Web stores i can buy it from, but where else can i buy download games from?

Have Microsoft managed to create another vendor lock in monopoly?
 

Noggin1980

Distinguished Member
How would you expect it to be any different? even if Microsoft had sales they would still be controlling the price.

It's exactly the same with Sony on the PS3 and Nintendo on the Wii by the way.

Oh one other thing there has also been Live Arcade Unplugged which can be brought from shops and has 6 live arcade games on it, you can buy it from gameplay for £15 when the RRP is £30. So for those 6 games you can get them cheaper.
 

Combatcolin

Standard Member
The compilation disc has been out for a while, good value too.

And i expect that is some degree of competition in the area, why can't we have an option to buy the games from the developers/game company's without having to go via xBox live?

Its about fair competition, something which is very lacking at the moment and i find quite annoying.

Sony and Nintendo are no better either.
 

FatBoysOnTour

Established Member
Never know prices for the games to go down as such, but sometimes downloadable content starts as paid, and then goes free after a period of time, ala Lost Planet. Occassionally, there will be the odd reduced price or freebee for a limited time - Texas Hold'em was free for its first 48 hours on release, and for the first month or so, new content for Lumines was about half price I think.

It's a walled garden. I don't really think Microsoft have ever pretended that it's been anything different. That's the beauty of the system though - your games cost say 400 or 800 points regardless of where you are, but you can shop around for the best deals on points. There's the option to buy them at RRP on Live itself via your credit card, but like your Xbox Live Subscription, you can shop around for a cheaper price. I've had 2100 points cards for £14.95 delivered on eBay in the past (prices tend to go up and down, they're up at the moment unfortunately), which is a darn sight cheaper than the £17 it would cost for 2000 buying them through Live.

What irritates me more, is the fact that you cannot buy 400 points, or 800 points, or even 1200 points. You have to either buy 500, 1000 and so on, which means you've always going to have odd points left on your account (usually 750 points when you need 800 on Wednesdays!). This is even worse on the Wii, because the SNES & Megadrive games are usually 800 points, but there is nothing for 200 points, so you always have points left over that you can't use unless you buy another 4000 points and another 4 800 point games, or there abouts
 

Nivek TT

Distinguished Member
Live arcade games are generally pretty cheap, most are around the £3 to £6 mark (although some stretch to a tenner). You're only ever gonna be saving something like 50p a game.

I haven't looked at PS3's rival to marketplace but I feel marketplace blows Ninty's offering out of the water. Almost all the retro games have had some re-work, often graphical and online multiplayer but always achievements and online leaderboards!

We've been short these last couple of months of good retail releases but thanks to some bloody good arcade games like Bomberman, Worms, Pinball and Prince of Persia Classic I've still found myself glued to my console over the summer!
 

FatBoysOnTour

Established Member
agreed, there's been a lot of good releases. Virtual Console is good if there's a particular title you're after, but there's no improvements in the graphics or anything on any of the titles, and I think cost wise, XBLA is actually better value for money. If a game I like comes out on both, like Sonic the Hedgehog, I would generally get it on XBLA, for the acheivements, and generally cheaper price.

As Kevin says though, when the games are as cheap as they are (and you're often getting a lot better value for money than wasting money on mobile phone games and things like that), it hardly sticks in the throat.
 

Scapegoat

Prominent Member
Personally I think this would be a good idea for both consumers, developers and MS.

There are lots of games on XBLA that have been out for a while that presumably are not 'selling' well.

Why not drop a few of the older 800pt games to 400pts? Or do some 2 for 1 offers on the old 400pt retro games? Might boost sales.

Could do it on weeks where there is no new XBLA games being made available - keeps the market stimulated.

Come on MS - give it ago. Though you could pay me 400pts for Root Beer Tapper and I still wouldb't be interested :devil:
 

bishman

Prominent Member
The games are so cheap and all have free trials. I don't really see any need for any reductions in prices. It's so simple to download the free trial and decide if it's worth £3.40 or £6.80.

How much do you think these games should cost? Maybe the developers could all work on them for free?
 

kismet110

Prominent Member
The games are so cheap and all have free trials. I don't really see any need for any reductions in prices. It's so simple to download the free trial and decide if it's worth £3.40 or £6.80.

How much do you think these games should cost? Maybe the developers could all work on them for free?

Agreed, the price for a title is extremely reasonable when put into context - how many cr*p films have people hired at around £4.00 a go?

Demos are a fair enough indicator most times of the games quality/appeal so no real excuse for buying a duffer....
 

Scapegoat

Prominent Member
I agree that as a general rule the prices are fair and I have no complaints about the 400 or 800 price point for the games - I have spent £50+ on Arcade games.

But I as a developer of a game that was released getting on for 2 years ago I would look at the number of 'new sales' coming in at the 800 price point - and consider what sales I might stimulate at 400 points. It may well get me more income.

There are a few games that I thought were OK, but decided against for the 800 price point. If they dropped to 400 I would buy them - and even more so for some of the retro-titles as they are very basic, but a 2 for 1 offer on Paperboy and Pac-Man would make me part with my 400 points.

If am in this boat, then why not others? Of course you will get the "I paid twice that complaints" from some, but the same argument could be used for the Full Price games in the shops that are sold off cheap after a while.
 

bishman

Prominent Member
I agree that as a general rule the prices are fair and I have no complaints about the 400 or 800 price point for the games - I have spent £50+ on Arcade games.

But I as a developer of a game that was released getting on for 2 years ago I would look at the number of 'new sales' coming in at the 800 price point - and consider what sales I might stimulate at 400 points. It may well get me more income.

There are a few games that I thought were OK, but decided against for the 800 price point. If they dropped to 400 I would buy them - and even more so for some of the retro-titles as they are very basic, but a 2 for 1 offer on Paperboy and Pac-Man would make me part with my 400 points.

If am in this boat, then why not others? Of course you will get the "I paid twice that complaints" from some, but the same argument could be used for the Full Price games in the shops that are sold off cheap after a while.
All good points and the reduced price after two years bringing in new sales could well work. Maybe when the 360 has actually been out two years we'll see it happen? ;)

Cheekiness aside it's a sensible suggestion and one that might happen in the fullness of time. Kind of like an Xbox live classics section.

As for people paying full price and then moaning after a reduction, I just don't see that as a problem. It happens every day with all kinds of products. I dread to recall how much I paid for my HD display two years ago, let alone compare it with what the same money would get me today.
 

Combatcolin

Standard Member
The games are so cheap and all have free trials. I don't really see any need for any reductions in prices. It's so simple to download the free trial and decide if it's worth £3.40 or £6.80.

How much do you think these games should cost? Maybe the developers could all work on them for free?

Lack of competition that bugs me.

Microsoft, and not the market, decide the prices.

But, hey! - Microsoft and Monopoly's go hand in hand.

:thumbsdow
 

Combatcolin

Standard Member
So i guess you have so much money that you don't need to shop around for the best price eh?

My argument is that you can't shop around, and are forced to pay the price that Microsoft want you to pay, not the price that a free market dictates.
 

CounterWhine

Established Member
As has been pointed out in this thread, the marketplaces of all three mainstream consoles are monopolies. Bitching at Microsoft in isolation just shows your own personal bias. You clearly don't want to hear anything except your own opinion and that makes for a boring thread.
 

Scapegoat

Prominent Member
So i guess you have so much money that you don't need to shop around for the best price eh?

My argument is that you can't shop around, and are forced to pay the price that Microsoft want you to pay, not the price that a free market dictates.

And sometimes the free market is worse for consumers. For example - last year I paid Sky £40 for a Prem Plus season ticket and saw all the games in HD.

Now thanks to 'competition' I would have to pay £120 to watch the same games in SD. And also I cannot now choose to watch extended highlights of these games via the Sky Football first system.

Sometimes additional competition is not all good.

You have the option with XBLA - buy your points elsewhere to save money, wait for the offline versions to be sold in the sale, don't play. Most if not all the games on Arcade are available via other sources - PC, other consoles, emulators etc.
 

Combatcolin

Standard Member
As has been pointed out in this thread, the marketplaces of all three mainstream consoles are monopolies. Bitching at Microsoft in isolation just shows your own personal bias. You clearly don't want to hear anything except your own opinion and that makes for a boring thread.

Im "bitching" at Microsoft as i'm not interested in either Sony or Nintendo's console's.
(xBox and Game Cube owner.)

And, i created this thread, which anyone is allowed to do, to air an issue and also to hear what other people have to say about that issue.

While the means to purchase XBL games is open to free market forces, which is a very good thing for the consumer, the end product is still very closed and restricted.

It is this restriction that i find annoying and also atypical of Microsoft - a company that excels in creating and maintaining its own monopoly's.

And on a personal note CounterWhine, people are free to debate and discuss what they see fit and what is commonly agreed on a forum.

blatant aggressive replies are neither helpful nor mature.
 

bishman

Prominent Member
Microsoft, and not the market, decide the prices.
It's actually the developers that set the price. I know we still can't shop around but not all of the flak should be heading towards MS. A case in point is Space Giraffe. MS wanted to sell it for 800 and even all their press releases said 800 untill recently, but Jeff Minter said it was to be sold at 400 and has been quite insistant on that.
 

Combatcolin

Standard Member
It's actually the developers that set the price. I know we still can't shop around but not all of the flak should be heading towards MS. A case in point is Space Giraffe. MS wanted to sell it for 800 and even all their press releases said 800 untill recently, but Jeff Minter said it was to be sold at 400 and has been quite insistant on that.

This is good news, but buying the game direct from the Developers would be better.

They, of course would have to pay Microsoft there dues - but after that they could charge less to generate more sales.
 
My argument is that you can't shop around, and are forced to pay the price that Microsoft want you to pay, not the price that a free market dictates.

Nonsense mate, I'd much rather have paid £6.80 for my copy of SOTN on XBLA rather than 'shop around' on Ebay and pick up the original PS1 version for £60+
If you're so inclined,then you'll find it's quite easy to pick up 90% of XBLA games on other formats.

Sure, having XBLA as the only available download place for the 360 version of these games does mean that we'll never see a price war (even less chance of it now, considering both Nintendo and Sony have adopted much the same pricing scale for VC and PSN downloads.) but when we're getting games such as Space Giraffe for the equivalent of £3.40 I don't really see it as something worth losing sleep over.

The best I reckon you can reasonably hope for is that as time goes on an XBLA Platinum range will be introduced with lower prices for many of the older and/or popular games or the release of more Compilations.
 

Combatcolin

Standard Member
Right, imagine that could buy SOTN (does sound a bit like SNOT eh?, sorry - :D sorry, i have no idea what game that is!) from another source for, say £4.80.

Multiple that buy a fair few games each year and the savings mount up - enough to buy more games, or say downloaded able rental movies etc.

Or, you could buy the game direct from the people who make it, they would cut there profit margin down a bit in return for an increased chance of a sale.

Which, is one of the basic principles of the market economy.

Another basic principle is that lack of competition = higher prices.

And Space Giraffe, i'll be buying that i buy an Elite, im sure i'll enjoy it the same as i'm sure i'll be narked off for being overpriced.
 
you could buy the game direct from the people who make it, they would cut there profit margin down a bit in return for an increased chance of a sale.

Developers would have no reason to cut the price of a downloadable game or host and distribute the games themselves, When you purchase a game from a retail establishment at a reduced price it's not going to affect the 'cut' of the development team.
By the time a game reaches a store shelf it's already been paid for upfront at trade price by the buying department of the retail chain, any reduction to the RRP after that is down to pricing competitions between stores.

For any publisher other than Microsoft to start hosting XBLA games would be a bit daft anyway, How much money do you think a small company such as Llamasoft would make if they set up dedicated servers to download Space Giraffe (the one game they have published on XBLA at the moment) just so they could sell it £1 cheaper than the XBLA arcade price?

SOTN = Symphony of the Night, By the way.
 

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