Are High Prices For Next-Gen Gaming Consoles Propping Up The Market For Old Machines?

from the the-smurfs-game-never-cost-this-much dept

The talk of the video game industry at the moment is the imminent launch of Nintendo's next-generation Wii console and Sony's long-awaited (and oft-delayed) PlayStation 3. But despite all the hype, recent earnings reports reiterate that it's older consoles that generate all the money in the games business, with analysts surprised by the strength of sales of games for the six-year-old PS2 and the two-year-old Nintendo DS. This is to be expected, on one hand, since there are so many of the older machines in circulation: more than 106 million PS2s have been sold, and though Microsoft is thrilled with Xbox 360 sales, only 6 million of the console have been sold since its launch a year ago. What makes the strength of PS2 game sales so surprising is that as the release of a next-generation system gets closer, many gamers tend to hold off on purchases, wanting instead to spend their money on new systems and games. Game publishers also tend to slow down releases, working to create games for the launch of the newer platforms. However, price sensitivity seems like it is playing a big role here. For instance, Sony recently cut the suggested price of the PS2 down to $129, whereas the Xbox 360 starts at $300 (with no price cuts forthcoming), and the PS3 will start at $500 -- not to mention games for the newer consoles typically run about $60. That might be acceptable to video game companies' core demographic, but as a wider range of people get interested in gaming and are looking for games that aren't necessarily based on ultra-realistic graphics and surround sound, it seems unlikely that they'll jump in at the high end of the market, and flock instead to cheaper systems with cheaper games. This means the supposedly old and busted likes of the PS2 -- which is currently outselling the Xbox 360, incidentally -- and other older machines could have some life left in them yet.

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  1. identicon
    Animal Crossing for Gamecube, 26 Nov 2006 @ 4:09pm

    Retrogaming & Nostalgia backlash against Next-Gen

    I'm truly against Next-gen gaming (Seventh Generation) for 4 reasons...

    1.> Costs of rebuying hardware, games, accessories.

    I currently own a Gamecube system and a couple of games. I plan to get Twilight Princess for Gamecube for Xmas because I don't have a Wii, nor I plan to purchase one. I'am I required to? Nope.
    I have other bills to pay and life to tend to, but in my freetime, I love to spend at least 25 minutes playing Animal Crossing, or sailing in Wind Waker, or even playing my beloved Intellivision Lives! compliation disc.
    People would tell me, ditch the Gamecube and upgrade to a Wii? Why? So I can give my money to Reggie Fils-Aime so I can download DRM restricted Virtual Console games that I can't even run on another Wii. I'm happy with my wired controllers, my Gamecube (yes, it is underrated!), but underrated consoles have more creativity than these hyped up mainstream consoles, and I'm not just talking about the Wii, it also applies to PS3 and Xbox 360.

    2.> Lack of originality in creating games, this also goes for the Wii.

    Twilight Princess on the Wii, I played on a store kiosk, yes its the same Gamecube graphics, but Nintendo delayed it for x number of months for what? so they can use it as a launch title for Wii.
    Xavix came out before the Wii was implemented.
    Rehashes is all I hear! Sequels, Prequels.
    I really don't understand this generation, before Nintendo came out with the Wii, they dissed it.
    When the Wii name came out, they dissed it.
    As long as the color of the product is "White" just like an iPod, they flock to buy it because it is freaken sexy! I don't want my games to be "SEXY!", hip and to look like MySpace!, I want fun, engagement, satisfying gameplay. Is that difficult to ask. I guess it is.

    3.> Next-Gen Gamers are jaded and lack a sense of history as long as the games have motion sensing, 20 billion polygons, HD, and iPod Compatible. They are set for spending a grand.

    These gamers also lack a sense of tangibility, as long as they finish a 70 hour game, they rush to Gamestop and trade it in for the next Peter Jackson game. Now, I've been watching videos of Twilight Princess, I've seen about 4 dungeons already, I will still get the game and finish it. But one thing is I won't trade the game for some other stupid $50 game. I'll replay Twilight Princess because I know it will be a great game, just like a great movie was, like lets say Back to the Future.

    4.> Next-gen Consoles are Wireless and Online.

    Call me geezer, but I grew up in the late 80s and early 90s. So I'm not some stupid 14 year old kid complaining. I had an NES, Genesis, N64, Dreamcast,
    old IBM PC 8088, iMac G3. So I know what I'm talking about. Gaming is about fun! not connecting online. I still prefer 2-Players next to each other.

    Why is it that these next-gen gamers especially these DS people love Wifi, Achievements, Virtual Consoles (not even real), Bluetooth, Points, subscriptions. I want my games on Disc, not on some download where I don't even own the damn product. Anyone see this? Tangibility? People who buy music on iTunes say its the best because its sooo convenient. Wheres the CD Booklet, Cover Art, Lyrics? I still buy my CDs. This is what I see about gamers today is that online is sweet. Give me a break. I'll buy a disk that has the booklet, artwork, than some stupid download from a Virtual Console.

    So personally, I don't like the Next-Gen, so don't call me NooB, fanboy, or this or that because the last-gen (Xbox, PS2, Gamecube) is the last set of consoles that were "Gaming Consoles".

    Even the Wii has this WiiConnect24, to attract non-gamers, but who are they attracting. It seems that Video Gaming is down the toilet and a crash will occur if this nonsense goes on. I don't want email or a web browser on my game console, nor watching movies on it. Everything has to be online! If I want to have fun, I must be online! What happened to good ol' clean fun playing games the quiet way!

    I want gaming consoles to be gaming consoles.
    I'm happy with my Gamecube, GBA SP. Thank You very much! I don't have respect for the seventh generation of gaming (Xbox 360, PS3, Wii, DS, PSP) because they aren't giving us what we really want: That is fun. As long as the console is sold on eBay, people flock to it (just like the PS3 line). I hate Hype!

    I'm for last-gen, real retrogaming (compliation discs or old hardware), and Nostalgia. Don't forget, I'm for the Underdogs! because Underdogs deserve more respect than (PS3, Xbox 360, and Wii, DS, PSP)

    Hey I may even get a used Dreamcast soon or even a nice looking Commodore 64. Even that Jaguar looks nice playing Bubsy.

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