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Buy Now or Wait 'till Xmas?

12-13-2010, 07:15 AM
#1
Joined: Nov 2010
Posts: 17
Buy Now or Wait 'till Xmas?

I'm extremely happy with my new iPad, and I've been working hard to fill it with games. The only problem that I have is the rapidly fluctuating prices in the app store. I don't want to say whether the prices for most games are too low or too high, but simply that they seem to change frequently and by large amounts.

I don't begrudge whatever marketing tactics the developers want to use, but it does make me feel vaguely sick when the price for a game that I bought a few days ago drops 50%-75% overnight (I'm looking at you Robokill!).

There's a bunch of games that I'm itching to buy, but I'm stuck wondering whether everything is magically going to turn .99 come December 20th? Since I wasn't paying attention last year, I don't know whether to expect a huge sale come Christmas or not.

I guess I'd just appreciate any advice people have about buying games now or waiting another week?
Or perhaps something more philosophical about how to feel okay about whatever price you pay for an app?
12-13-2010, 07:40 AM
#2
Joined: Jun 2010
Posts: 1,609
Well I also bought robokill before last cheap sale and there's no problem for me, because it's a great game. The gameplay is just better than other dual stick similar games I played with real level design when those games tend throw you in mostly free area with unorganized and random positions of enemies.

If I would not have like the game that would have been somehow unpleasant but well there's two way to see that. See the average, ie the number of cheap sell you got counterbalancing and few buy you did right before the sale. Or if if you can't support it there's no way to predict just never buy any game for higher than $.99 or free. You'll end with some games you'll never get but you won't get any money disappointment.

EDIT: I'm a lot less welcoming about developers or publishers that made an iphone sale few before announce or release the separate iPad version, that's obvious players racketing that I hate.

EDIT2: I already quoted that I think Apple should put a bit more order in that:
  • Not allowing price change before two month after last price change.
  • Force publisher and developers announce (secretly) the price change 2 weeks before.
  • Show last 5 prices change in App Store like you can see in Appshopper, users would see some poor dev tactics like dev that tried potentially racket them by trying put their poor boring game at $99 or more.

Last edited by Qordobo; 12-13-2010 at 07:51 AM.

12-13-2010, 12:00 PM
#3
Joined: Sep 2008
Location: Washington, DC
Posts: 1,151
There will be NO SALES or changes December 23-28. iTunes Connect, the system developers use to make changes, will be down during that time and we are not allowed to schedule any changes for that time period. Basically, the whole store will be on lockdown.

So don't expect any sales on Christmas day. After the 28th, of course, anything goes
12-13-2010, 12:12 PM
#4
Joined: Sep 2010
Posts: 484
@nattylux

thanks for clearing that up!

would be buying with confidence this holiday season, I guess!

GameCenter / plus+ / Crystal ID: MeteorFlare
OpenFeint: MeteorFlye
12-13-2010, 01:00 PM
#5
Joined: Nov 2010
Posts: 17
I actually really don't like the idea that we should "support" a developer by buying their games. I prefer judging a game on its own merits. Sure--if you're doing something for charity, then the whole "supporting a cause" makes sense.

But this isn't charity, these are people who design popular games for a living. I can see supporting them in the same sense that I try to support local food, or microbrews--but that's because they taste better than the standard fare.
Likewise, I expect an indie game developer to make a good game. It doesn't have to have the same level of graphics or voice acting as something from EA, but it should be a GOOD game.

I guess that's where I feel like I have a big problem with the devs jerking the price around so quickly. Either a game is worth the money or it isn't. I remember reading through the thread on Canabalt, and people screaming about how they were charging 2.99 for a 1-button flash game. In their defense however, the developers have stuck with their claim. They say their game is worth a full 2.99 and that's what they're selling it for.

I have a harder time with a game like Robokill, where the price jumps between 7.99 and .99. Either the game is worth eight dollars, or it isn't. It can't be worth eight dollars one day, and a fraction of that the next.

At least with other real-world goods there's a more established scale. I know that I can buy a PC game new for a certain price, or that the price will start declining at a relatively steady rate over time. With these apps, I just have no idea where the price is heading. And that makes me anxious.
12-13-2010, 01:19 PM
#6
i think ill wait to see if there are any sales, id hate to buy a game and then see it for free or $0.99 in the same week! happens alot..
im waiting to get street fighter IV. 10 bucks is a bit too steep for me, here's hoping it goes on sale for christmas.
12-13-2010, 01:23 PM
#7
Joined: Nov 2010
Location: Asmara, Eritrea
Posts: 1,730
I think I am going to wait till the storm passes. I have my eyes on few games, they are FIFA 11( which I miss when it was on sale), spiderman total mayhem, and modern combat 2. However, I am Planning an instant purchase to Aralon this Thursday. I was disappointed with infinity blade (was expecting free roam not turn based) I disliked Rage because of that.
12-13-2010, 02:51 PM
#8
Joined: Aug 2010
Posts: 837
Quote:
Originally Posted by zackbh View Post
I guess I'd just appreciate any advice people have about buying games now or waiting another week?
Or perhaps something more philosophical about how to feel okay about whatever price you pay for an app?
there is an app called appshopper that provides information about all the activity that a particular app has in its history. in addition to letting you know about current sales and updates, you can check which apps have regular price changes and which stay relatively stagnant with regards to price.

this is nice, because you can rest fairly assured that game like space invaders: infinity gene, which has never dropped its launch price in well over a year, will not go on sale and is probably a safe buy....whereas a game like enigmo, which drops in price regularly, and might be a better buy at a different point.

the app also lets you build wish lists to track apps you're interested in and keep tabs on your current apps to let you know what is happening with them in the event they are not installed on your device. appshopper has a great website to boot. a very handy tool.

GameCenter = McCREE

*please, no more RR3 friend requests*
12-13-2010, 03:15 PM
#9
Joined: Nov 2010
Posts: 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by nattylux View Post
There will be NO SALES or changes December 23-28. iTunes Connect, the system developers use to make changes, will be down during that time and we are not allowed to schedule any changes for that time period. Basically, the whole store will be on lockdown.

So don't expect any sales on Christmas day. After the 28th, of course, anything goes
So... does this mean that there's usually a crazy amount of sales between 28th and 1st? Should I save all my milk money for then? Just trying to get a handle on what to expect.
12-13-2010, 03:33 PM
#10
Joined: Jan 2010
Posts: 780
I would say get some of the awesome new games like Infinity Blade, and get Aralon when it comes out on Thursday. I don't see them going on sale anytime soon. Then use appshopper and buy everything else on sale. Certain games basically never go on sale, like Touchgrind for example. But other games go to $0.99 frequently like Gameloft titles.