Then again, what if there's just two consoles, and they're both $599? Than what?
Time to get... 2 new jobs?
I personally just can’t see $600 happening. MS and Sony know that gamers are highly resistant to price increases, it’s why the price of AAA games has stayed at $60 for like 15 years, when everything else from food to movies to utilities has gone up by 30%+ in that same time frame, publishers know that they would face extreme backlash if they increased to $70 or $80. The vast majority of console gamers will not spend $600 on a console, even $500 is too much for most of them.
I also think $599 is unlikely for both. I do think $599 for a higher tier console, that's worth way more than that when compared to PC, competing against a worthy $499 console, is a possibility. More expensive for less or the same clearly isn't acceptable. More expensive for clearly more? It won't be the lead seller, but it would sell enough. Most likely, if there's a gap, it's $399 and $499 again though.
In terms of the people who don't want a console that's too expensive for them, or who don't want multiple SKU's of different performance for many reasons, the best a $599 situation could be, is one where Lockhart exists, but is actually $399 and worth every penny. A very similar type of situation as this gen, just right out of the gate. Games made for a worthy next gen system, that perform better on the more expensive SKU, but are held back slightly because of the base system. It worked ok this gen, so no reason why it really shouldn't work next gen.
I think consoles would also sell for a higher price but only if MS and Sony would ask for $599 bucks and not only one of both. The PS3 had to compete against the 360 with a lower price and for many people, it offered pretty much the same to not care about the PS3. And the PS3 still sold well while having more problems than the price. Worse online structure, worse multi platform games and so on).
If PS5 and Series X would be $599 and there wouldn't be a lower priced Xbox, we would see really good sales numbers. I really doubt this magical "a gamer will never pay more than 500 bucks for a console while paying 600 isn't harder for him nowadays than 500 some years ago" now.
It makes no sense that a gamer is a different kind of human who doesn't accept higher prices while everyone else on this planet accepts it for everything else as long as he also earns more.
And I know that some other stuff even decreased in prices the last 20 years or so (TVs) but that's the industries itself who decided this direction since they could go down and went for lower prices to convince people to replace it faster which in the end still means higher spendings I guess.
This was where I was getting my $599 for both from. If they both want to offer a massive jump like PS3 did, as long as they both had a similar price with similar worthy hardware, the sales wouldn't be as bad as some would think. They wouldn't be stellar mind you, but over time they would end up similar to how PS3 did overall. Mostly casuals would save up and 3-5 years down the road they would upgrade.
How would this impact mid gen sales though, if that takes place again? Would it be better or worse? Upgraders should have more willing buyers for their older cheaper hardware.
Is $599 a reasonable price? In general no, but if the only direct competition is also the same price, then that to a degree justifies it.
Also take into account what that would mean for a next gen Switch. If it can barely play downgraded games from a $399 launch console, what about when those next gen launch consoles are $599?
Last edited by EricHiggin - on 29 December 2019