Publishers Considering Raising Game Prices for PS5 and Xbox Series X, According to IDG Consulting

Publishers Considering Raising Game Prices for PS5 and Xbox Series X, According to IDG Consulting - News

by William D'Angelo , posted on 02 July 2020 / 1,651 Views

Publisher 2K Games announced NBA 2K21 will be $59.99 for the Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PC, and Google Stadia, but will be $10 more for the next generation consoles, the PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X.

Video games research firm IDG Consulting President and CEO Yoshio Osaki in an interview with GamesIndustry says other game publishers are considering raising the price of their games for the PS5 and Xbox Series X. 

Video game prices in the US have remained flat since 2005 and 2006 when they were raised from $49.99 to $59.99. He says game production costs for the next generation have increased 200 percent to 300 percent, depending on the IP, studio and genre, but prices have remained the same for around 15 years.

Publishers Considering Raising Game Prices for PS5 and Xbox Series X, According to IDG Consulting 

"The last time that next-gen launch software pricing went up was in 2005 and 2006, when it went from $49.99 to $59.99 at the start of the Xbox 360 and PS3 generation," Osaki said. "During that time, the costs and prices in other affiliated verticals have gone up.

"Even with the increase to $69.99 for next-gen, that price increase from 2005 to 2020 next-gen is only up 17%, far lower than the other comparisons.

"While the cost of development and publishing have gone up, and pricing in other entertainment verticals has also gone up substantially, next-gen software pricing has not reflected these increases. $59.99 to $69.99 does not even cover these other cost increases completely, but does move it more in the proper direction.

"IDG works with all major game publishers, and our channel checks indicate that other publishers are also exploring moving their next-gen pricing up on certain franchises, for the same reasons outlined above.

"Not every game should garner the $69.99 price point on next-gen, but flagship AAAs such as NBA 2K merit this pricing more than others."


A life-long and avid gamer, William D'Angelo was first introduced to VGChartz in 2007. After years of supporting the site, he was brought on in 2010 as a junior analyst, working his way up to lead analyst in 2012. He has expanded his involvement in the gaming community by producing content on his own YouTube channel and Twitch channel dedicated to gaming Let's Plays and tutorials. You can contact the author at wdangelo@vgchartz.com or on Twitter @TrunksWD.


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18 Comments

SuaveSocialist (on 02 July 2020)

Not worth it. If a game uses the free-to-play business model of microtransactions and lootboxes (such as NBA 2K), the game should be free. After all, the profits from that model have significantly overshadowed the rising costs of development and publishing.


mutantsushi (on 03 July 2020)

Yup. I understand part of rationale is PS5/XSX are being built on different base (dependant on their advanced features) and even PC is being built on PS4/XOne(3) base (since requiring SSD and modern GPU shrinks the customer base), but realistically they still share alot of development work. The prices (not just newgen $10 increase) are also ridiculous considering most yearly releases aren't fundamentally new games, but merely content updates that are priced as fully games. Yearly updates are linked to the genre, but it would be a stronger value argument if those yearly updates were included as free patches rather than full price new games. To be fair, there is additional cost of licencing from NBA itself, but the reason EA pays that licence is because it is cash cow for them... holding this price structure as unquestionably reasonable is absurd.


  • +1
mutantsushi (on 03 July 2020)

It is pretty insulting that gaming media even treats this propaganda seriously. If the economics were as EA presents, then they would have declining profits or even losses that they would announce in their financial reports. Microtransaction profits are so toxic they are at risk of being banned if not already in most major markets, yet they wish this factor to be ignored completely while begging poverty. That they can't even offer reasonable PAID content updates to existing owners rather than package them as entirely new games despite most not fundamentally changing underlying game (new PS5/XSX version excepted) just beggards belief, but that's corporate dominion for you.


  • +1
Angelus (on 02 July 2020)

"Not every game should garner the $69.99 price point on next-gen, but flagship AAAs such as NBA 2K merit this pricing more than others." Good one.


DonFerrari (on 02 July 2020)

Yearly titles should be 60 for the first one and 10 bucks with DLC to update it on the consecutive years. 70 every year is ludicrous.


  • 0
Ka-pi96 (on 03 July 2020)

"While the cost of development and publishing have gone up" Has it though? Sure, you can say the cost of development has gone up, but that's only because devs strive for constantly bigger and more detailed games. It's an optional increase. The cost for a game of similar scale to previously shouldn't have gone up. As for publishing, surely that cost has decreased, no? I mean, a lot of games are sold digitally these days and the cost of publishing digital games must be significantly lower than physical, so surely they're saving a bunch of money there.


Burning Typhoon (on 03 July 2020)

Well, if you roll over and let them do it, the price will rise. But if enough people aren't going to stand for this, they'll simply keep the games at 60. No reason for games to get more expensive when technology is making the whole creation process cheaper. One game + a year of DLC will be half the price of the console if this keeps up. Look at Dead or Alive 6 with it's 2000 dollars in DLC.


NobleTeam360 (on 03 July 2020)

So, we're just gonna pretend Publishers haven't been making a crap ton of money off of microtransactions? I definitely won't be buying games at 70 dollar price point.


Tridrakious (on 03 July 2020)

If standard pricing goes up, I stop buying games day one. It's that simple for me. And with digital gaining more and more ground, I don't think a price increase is needed.


SanAndreasX (on 03 July 2020)

Wasn't that why we were being asked to pay $60 for incomplete games loaded with MTX? What the hell, man?


ArchangelMadzz (on 02 July 2020)

Well $70 in 2020 is $55 in 2006 when the price increased. So realistically it could've gone up. Son even with the price increase games would be still $6 cheaper than they were in 2006.


SanAndreasX (on 03 July 2020)

$70 still looks like $70, which is a perception issue. The only games I would buy at more than $60 would be big-name RPGs in collectors' editions.


  • +1
ArchangelMadzz (on 03 July 2020)

Not every game would be worth it.

Guess it's hard to have sympathy cause games have been increasing in price since 2006 here yet has stayed stagnant in the US for so long.


  • 0
SanAndreasX (on 03 July 2020)

Very, very few games are worth $70, including AAA titles. There's too much unnecessary bloat in most titles.


  • 0
ArchangelMadzz (on 03 July 2020)

I'm not saying it's worth it or not. I'm saying that you can't expect games to continue to get perpetually cheaper to buy as inflation goes up.


  • 0
hunter_alien (on 03 July 2020)

Digital distribution, special editions, growing market and monetization options (micro-transactions, gamepasses, expansions) more than covered any income deficit from the "low" price of 60$. Come on, and it is announced with NBA for all games. What a joke.


John2290 (on 03 July 2020)

I'll be finding a different hobby so it's already too expensive at 69.99 euro.


DonFerrari (on 02 July 2020)

Sales also increase as so the profit of the blockbusters... I don't buy NBA games anyway.