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22 November 2020

Digital game verse Physical game

Playstation 5 is out and the actual pricing have been released. 

Looking at the pricing position it seems many would be going to buy the digital edition as it is SGD $130 cheaper than a physical one. It seems like a no brainer but there is something more and that lead us to this topic of Digital game and Physical game.

For that we need to understand how physical game works. 

Disclaimer: Below is just example (may not be the actual numbers) but to illustrate how physical game cost and digital game cost.

Physical Game Sales
Traditionally before the internet age, physical copy were sold to retailer and the official listed price is always set by game maker or console game maker. Let's say a game official listed price is $50. That is the price that reseller sell it to the end customer.

Reseller who have shop front and overhead would need to earn from the listed price. So how much is the reseller should be earning from the $50? Maybe a certain percentage of that $50. Which mean the reseller get the game in at lower price from Game or console maker.

Game maker would need to cover the cost of physical copy, logistic of the physical game such as transport and storage. That would be in the cost.  Lastly not forgetting game development overhead and also license royalty.  On top of that some portion was spend on marketing. 

That would be how Physical game work,

Digital Game Sales
So what is the cost of Digital game? Well it would be very much on game development (game development often are one time cost but with all the online DLC content would be recurrence) , internet storage and bandwidth for upload and download and some marketing cost. 

Traditionally digital game should appear to be cheaper as many of the overhead were gone but somehow at this point of time if you look at the console official game store you will find the pricing is not much different with physical copy especially the latest game. 

The reasoning was to keep the physical shop in business and fairness but we all know where console maker are moving to as they design their console right? 

Think harder, Think again

Many still support Physical copy because of the freedom for consumer to control. They can lend to their friend, resell it or keep it in their collection for display.

Well you can argue that digital game will be also in your online account but is that really so? What happen to your Playstation 3 digital game in your account? Is it still there? Do you remember those game you purchase now no longer able to download?

Online account give offer for FREE game regularly and yes what if one day you no longer subscribe to your online account? Can you still play those game and do you still able to get your saved files?

I would also said that ideal console should be an independent console that do not need updating of OS and need to be online to play even a local game. 

The question is have the gamers given too much footing over years to allow console maker who love the customer to get more profit from customer and short change them? 

That is something I will leave you as the consumer or gamer to think about. It seems they want us to be there unless true gamers wake up and before you know we accepted the way gaming distribution works. 

On another note the gaming 2020 award is coming and the winner may not be what you expect it to be too! 

Exciting time 2020. 

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