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iPhone: a pricing question

09-06-2008, 05:31 AM
#1
Joined: Sep 2008
Location: San Francisco, CA
Posts: 134
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a pricing question

I've been reading the thread about Blue Skies and iPhone game pricing, and I'm curious: how much would you be willing to spend on an iPhone game, maximum?

For instance, suppose Square Enix were to put out a Final Fantasy game for the iPhone (original or a remake) with DS- or PSP-quality production values--a console game, in other words. Would you pay $30 or $40 for it, or is that out of the question?

Steve Palley, www.slidetoplay.com
09-06-2008, 06:07 AM
#2
Joined: Jul 2008
Location: Plant City, FL
Posts: 88
I don't think it really matters what I think or am willing to pay. We can set maximums, but we still haven't seen what the iPhone is capable of to the fullest extent, so the maximum can be flexible at this point. As always, the market will dictate how much we spend simply by voting with our wallets.

If id Software came out with Quake for the iPhone, and it worked absolutely perfect, I'd pay $40 for it easily. Only if the controls are perfect, though.

Matt

09-06-2008, 07:22 AM
#3
Joined: Aug 2008
Location: Florida
Posts: 28
Probably depends on your audience. I'm not much of a gamer. I like games that have no story line and you can play for about 5-10 minutes to pass some time in the doc's office and not have to think about later. For me I refuse to pay more than about 3.99 for a game (especially after purchasing Super Monkey Ball, which I don't really think is worth $10) For instance, Galcon looks amazing to me, but I'm not sure I'm ever going to get $10 worth out of it, so I haven't bought it yet.

There is one major exception: I've been looking forward to spore for years... and years (it seems like), so I might buy that at whatever price they give it.

I'm curious as to what the iPhone demographics look like. What sex/age group are the majority of owners?
09-06-2008, 07:50 AM
#4
i cant wait for spore either. is it coming out tommarow cuz the actual game for the computer does
09-06-2008, 07:59 AM
#5
Joined: Aug 2008
Posts: 190
I'm not sure what my maximum price is, I've spent $10 on a few (Bejeweled, Asphalt, Crash...) and felt like I got my moneys worth on most of them (Bejeweled should probably be $5, it is on other platforms for the same game!). But anything over $10 better have a demo out or I would never even consider it - even if it's a well known name since there is no knowing how well the game performs and controls on the iphone.
09-06-2008, 08:21 AM
#6
Joined: Sep 2008
Posts: 48
Interesting question. So far, I'm disappointed with the iphone gaming platform. Do we really need another casual puzzle game or space invaders clone? Those games can be fun too, but they are cellphone games and ipod Touch/iphone can do much more.

That said, I would gladly spend about $60 for a quality title. By 'quality' I don't mean hi-tech 3d graphics – I believe good graphics can't make up for a otherwise bad game. I mean a game with great, long lasting gameplay and a good story. Games like Chrono Trigger for Super Nintendo or maybe Darwinia (mac/pc) would make great games for iphone. But then again, I rather see a new game than a port.
09-06-2008, 09:15 AM
#7
Joined: Aug 2008
Location: Tokyo, Japan
Posts: 353
If I'm paying $30 for a game, I expect a shiny box with cool graphics and neat little bullet points on the back telling me how cool the game is.

Seriously though - my iPhone is a PHONE. It may very well be capable of PSP-quality graphics, but it would be awfully hard for me to justify spending more than about $10 on a cell phone game, or an iPod game for that matter. Not when I have nothing tangible to show for my money (cartridge, box, user manual, etc) ... Just my opinion.
09-06-2008, 09:48 AM
#8
Joined: Aug 2008
Location: Florida
Posts: 28
@mavis

I think that your sentiments might illuminate a major difference between the pysche of iPhone and iPod touch users. I'm an iPod Touch user and I definitely bought the touch because I thought it would be a great pocket computer (which it is). I also figured that Apple would sooner or later release an SDK and we'd get apps on it. I definitely think of it as a pocket computer and not an iPod.

Also, right now we still get physical media for other game devices/consoles but how long will it last? Already with XBox 360's marketplace (I forget its name) or Wiiware (and probably something on the PS3, I just amn't savvy to it) we are seeing downloadable game content (granted at exactly the $10 price point). I think the next gen consoles will probably only increase in online purchasing options. It will probably mean more sales (since gamers don't have to march out to Best Buy for the latest game) and cheaper distribution costs (maybe, I guess that depends on the price of bandwidth per download vs. manufacturing of a DVD, again I'm not privy to such info). I mean movies are heading that way with Netflix's new device and availability on the 360, iTunes & Apple TV, Comcast On Demand, etc.

Last edited by johnbowers; 09-06-2008 at 09:56 AM.
09-06-2008, 10:08 AM
#9
Joined: Sep 2008
Posts: 2,487
Quote:
Originally Posted by johnbowers View Post
@mavis

I think that your sentiments might illuminate a major difference between the pysche of iPhone and iPod touch users. I'm an iPod Touch user and I definitely bought the touch because I thought it would be a great pocket computer (which it is). I also figured that Apple would sooner or later release an SDK and we'd get apps on it. I definitely think of it as a pocket computer and not an iPod.

Also, right now we still get physical media for other game devices/consoles but how long will it last? Already with XBox 360's marketplace (I forget its name) or Wiiware (and probably something on the PS3, I just amn't savvy to it) we are seeing downloadable game content (granted at exactly the $10 price point). I think the next gen consoles will probably only increase in online purchasing options. It will probably mean more sales (since gamers don't have to march out to Best Buy for the latest game) and cheaper distribution costs (maybe, I guess that depends on the price of bandwidth per download vs. manufacturing of a DVD, again I'm not privy to such info). I mean movies are heading that way with Netflix's new device and availability on the 360, iTunes & Apple TV, Comcast On Demand, etc.
I think right there is the reason why as a Touch user, I don't expect to pay the same price as 360/ps3 games. Because there are no distribution costs, pretty much no commercials/advertising (other than a youtube video), and that you're not getting a 'virtual' piece of property that cannot be traded in or exchanged, I don't expect to pay over $30 ever. I agree that I bought my Touch as a mini computer, and also with the knowledge that SDK's were going to be coming out..
However, Online games on xbox360 as you mentioned range from $10-$15, so I don't expect to pay more for an iPhone/Touch game...unless of course the production/replay value is amazing, and to date, I personally don't think anything has come close yet. Would I be willing to spend $10-$20, absolutely but it has to be worth it, and I guess "worth" is always a subjective experience.
09-06-2008, 10:35 AM
#10
Joined: Aug 2008
Location: Florida
Posts: 28
@Mr. Charley

Yeah, I agree that nothing out there yet comes close to the production values of $multi-million development titles. I'm saying that I wouldn't be surprised at all if the XBox v3 made most of its content available online or online only, and I doubt that the industry would give gamers more than a two-three dollar price break. It is probably cheaper for them to distribute via online than through the box stores but I doubt its cheap enough that a $60 game would become a $30 game. My guess is box/DVD/manual all end up costing the producers a dollar or two per copy. I think that gamers who want physical media for their games are going to be out of luck sooner or later with ALL game consoles, not just handheld devices.