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Forums - Gaming Discussion - Is the market ready for a $500 console yet?


What should the PS5 & Xbox 4 cost at launch?

$500 (high specs) 45 60.81%
$450 (moderate specs) 8 10.81%
$400 (low specs) 21 28.38%

Consumers: Everything else has gotten more expensive, but we will riot if game consoles and video games become more expensive!

Companies: Well everyone, looks like we have to cut some people from their jobs because we didn't sell ludicrous numbers that we need to make a profit off our game because the consumers don't understand inflation, good luck on your future endeavors!

Consumers: Why did you fire those poor people? We riot!

Companies: Ok, Ok! We won't fire anymore! We will release DLC after games to make up for the lost profit on ya'll not understanding inflation. Sound fair?

Consumers: No! NO DLC! That just means you didn't put in enough effort into the game in the first place! We will only buy game of the year editions at 87% off on Steam sale now! Take that you capitalist pigs!

Companies: Uh...

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I would pay 500 but I doubt most parents would want to pay that for a console for their kids.

$400 is the right price at launch for the entry level version. If that model is offered, and it will do the majority of sales, nothing wrong about offering a premium model too at $500 or even more. But a $500 version alone wouldn't sell enough.

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twintail said:
as long as you have the software, and hardware upgrade to justify it, I think the price will be fine.

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Alby_da_Wolf said:
$400 is the right price at launch for the entry level version. If that model is offered, and it will do the majority of sales, nothing wrong about offering a premium model too at $500 or even more. But a $500 version alone wouldn't sell enough.

AFAIK both the X360's and the PS3's more expensive models sold better than their cheaper counterparts, though.






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SKMBlake said:

You can't compare consoles to other stuff. That's my main point. Of course inflation matters. But it's irrevelant when it comes to consoles and general gaming.

Consoles have almost one and only purpose, which is gaming, and peoples doesn't want to spend more than 400$ just for gaming, because the games are already expensive enough (+game as a service stuffs). If the minimum you can get is 500$ + 60$ for one and only (AAA) game, that's way too much.

Remember, it's only for gaming. Not other purposes. You can access Hulu, Netflix, Prime Video and stuff on other devices almost everyone own.

Why AAA games doesn't cost 80-100$ then ? Because publishers know people won't buy it

That's special pleading: Citing something as an exception to a generally excepted rule without justifying the exception.

If it were irrelevant to consoles, then nobody would have bought a PS4. The $400 sticker price isn't anything new:

But as I've stated on multiple occasions on this thread, $400 is reasonable today, but was outrageous 25-30 years ago, because inflation has gradually reduced the value of a dollar. Nintendo and Sega wouldn't have even attempted to sell their 8-bit or 16-bit systems for $300, much less $400 (that $200 launch price for the SNES is $372 in current dollars). By 2000, though, $300 was perfectly reasonable, and by 2013 $400 was affordable.

We can easily see that the $400 Saturn and especially $400 Neo-Geo actually cost a lot more than the $500 Xbox One X when adjusted for inflation. In fact, the One X is only marginally more expensive than the PS1 was at launch, the same as the 20GB 360 was. Meanwhile, the PS4's launch price makes it the least expensive PlayStation system ever at launch, and right at around the long term adjusted average for all consoles from the Big Four.

If inflation were really irrelevant for consoles, then $400 now would be just as unreasonable now as it would have been 20-30 years ago. Clearly it is no longer a deal-breaker. Consumers are still very cognizant of the declining value of a dollar over time. That applies just as much for consoles as it does for any other consumer electronic item or other good. A reasonable sticker price for anything today would have been considered too high when my parents were my age, and obscene when my grandparents were my age. And even in the shorter term, people notice.

Now, let's assume inflation remains relatively constant, with a net change of 3% from now to Nov. 2020. Let's further assume that the PS5 costs $450 and the rumored high-end "Scarlet" model of the Xbox 4 costs $500. This is what the price chart would look like (sans Neo-Geo):

A $450 launch price for next-gen consoles would be right on par with the adjusted prices of the PS4, PS2, and OXbox, and only $67/17.5% more expensive than the SNES. $500 would be only $50 more than that. Even $500 would be imminently reasonable for a non-Nintendo console. And the price will go down over time! By the 2022 holiday season, we ought to see standard prices no more than $400, and we'll see the usual big Black Friday deals that would knock $50-100 off the price. Within two years, consumers will be able to buy a PS5 or Xbox 4 for less than $400.

As for software, games did used to have sticker prices of $70 on occasion back in the 90s. The various versions of Street Fighter II and many JRPGs had that price point. And when you adjust for inflation, even the more common price points that where in the $50-60 range would be $80-100 or more now:

Software has gotten a lot cheaper, despite the growing costs of development. Even if you ignore the higher costs of cartridges, we can see that disc-based games have gotten cheaper. While none are on the chart, Sega CD and TurboGrafx-CD games retailed for $50-60 in 1993 ($88-106 in current dollars), thus putting them on par with the cartridge-based titles of the time. PS1 and Dreamcast games have adjusted prices well north of $70. Even $50 PS2, Xbox, GameCube, and earlier Wii games are more expensive than $60 games now. But instead of a price hike to $70, we've seen increasingly aggressive monetization schemes in games, where DLC has mutated from substantial chunks of content to modern microtransactions.

Oh, and you don't have to buy games at the full $60, either. You can go on Amazon right now and buy some of the biggest hits of 2018 for less than $40 already, in new condition. If you're willing to wait, most games go down in price quite a bit. It typically took a lot longer to see declines that sharp back when I was a kid, and even the reduced prices were still comparable to a brand new title today. Even by 1993, when the NES was already well on the way out, Nintendo's budget "Classic Series" line of games were not significantly cheaper than current games. In the spring of 1993, the original Metroid was still going for $30, which is about $53 adjusted.

Buying games is quite simply a lot easier on the wallet than it used to be. The laws of economics have quite honestly spoiled us rotten. And while it doesn't excuse what many AAA publishers have done in regards to monetization in recent years, it does explain it.


In accordance to the VGC forum rules, §8.5, I hereby exercise my right to demand to be left alone regarding the subject of the effects of the pandemic on video game sales (i.e., "COVID bump").

I did justify the reason at least 3 times, you don't wanna read it, fine, but that's not my fault.
Your only argument is "inflation" and nothing else. Well, guess what, people don't give a bread about how consoles cost 20 years ago. Parents won't buy a 500$ device for their kids which only does gaming (which they already consider to be bad for kids anyway).

But yeah, go to every wallmart you can see when the 500$-Nex gen consoles are released and show them your charts, I'm sure they will convince them

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In nz its hugely  popular. I for one bought xbox one x purely play games at 4k. Sure i can play these games with higher fidelity on my pc at full hd but its not the same at 4k. Games that fully utilise it , is stunning! .  U cant play games on pc at 4k at 500 usd can u?

TranceformerFX said:

Despite enthusiastic Xbox gamers who go off of zero data, they'll tell you that the $500 One X is doing "moderately well" or some other damage control escapist catch phrase.

I work at an electronics store in Salt Lake City, UT. On Black Friday, everyone was buying PS4 Pro's and Switch's. We sold out of both. Nobody bought a One X - not one damn person through out that day. Those are pretty shitty odds in a city that has a census of almost a million people - even considering that we're just "one" electronics store in a city, there's no excuse for that kind of disparity except for one singular reason:

People, generally speaking, don't want to spend $500 on a console EVEN IF the hardware justifies it. (Which the One X does, cuz it's a beast) And the people that do have already done so by investing that money into a "gaming PC"

The story won't be ANY different if the PS5 and X2 launch at $500 - regardless of how appealing the tech is. Because at the end of the day - it's the kids Mom's that are buying the console if they're 17 or younger.

$500us for a console is too much especially with all the PC options out there today. Console gaming should stay as a budgeted system with premium options.