Pre-owned games is something that causes a lot of consternation among publishers and developers. However, Saber Interactive CEO Matthew Karch (developer of TimeShift and the downloadable game for Battle: Los Angeles) said the onus is not on gamers for buying and selling games, but rather on the game makers who need to consider new approaches.
“I absolutely feel that cheaper, digital games have to be the future,” said Karch. “$60 is a lot to pay for a game, and while there is definitely a market for games in that price range, for many people that’s an immediate barrier to entry. People in our industry are in a panic about used games, but honestly, can you blame people for playing a game and then trying to get some value back out of it The only way for many gamers to currently play multiple triple-A games is to shell out quite a bit of money and that definitely limits our consumer base.”
“If you want to reach an audience that is not accustomed to spending or can’t spend that kind of money, then you need to give them an alternative,” he added. “I think this also applies to our core audience. Smaller, high quality digital downloads are a great way to do that.
“I think the price tag alienates gamers. People complain about $5 spent when they don’t like a download How do you think they feel about blowing $60 That definitely limits our audience, he surmised. “The $60 price tag is holding games back, in more respects than one. The primary problem with the price tag is that it limits the market. Because the market is limited, publishers need to make sure they hit as many in their audience as possible with a game. This means that less risks are taken and games end up being much more ‘cookie cutter’ and innovation is stifled.”