Even by Nintendo standards $60 for Skyward Sword HD is aggressive pricing

Avatar image for bigsocrates
bigsocrates

3072

Forum Posts

44

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

#1 bigsocrates  Online

We all know about the Nintendo tax and how much more Nintendo charges for older games than other companies. The Wii U ports have been a prime example of this, and there are plenty of others. Even still, $60 for Skyward Sword HD seems like a lot compared to recent trends both in the industry and at Nintendo.

Remasters and remakes have been a trend in games for quite some time, and there have been a recent spate of high profile and, at least in my opinion, high quality projects. We got Crash, Spyro, Crash Team Racing and even Tony Hawk 1+2 Remakes from Activision, and they were all excellent and all reasonably priced. The Tony Hawk games totally remade with the old soundtracks almost all there AND new music, which couldn't have been cheap, was an especially impressive and compelling package, at $40. Sony has been consistently remaking old games and pricing them anywhere from $40 to much cheaper. Microsoft offered the Halo Master Chief Collection and the Rare Replay Collection, both of which are among the best deals in gaming (at least now that the MCC works.)

Even Nintendo has improved recently. Yes there was the Pikmin 3 port, but that had some enhancements and was an already modern looking game from an obscure system. The Mario 3D All Stars collection may have been bare bones in terms of the games offered, but did provide 3 classics for $60. The recent Mario 3D World port included Bowser's Fury, which many people wish was a $20-30 stand alone title...showing that it has serious value on top of the already excellent 3D World.

Skyward Sword may be getting more substantial updates than just an HD sheen and updated controls. Maybe there will be some reworked textures (they did that for Mario 64 in the All-Stars collection) and they might even do some of the stuff they did with Windwaker in terms of streamlining and fixing some of the design issues, but even still it's a high price for an old game that clearly is not getting the full remake treatment.

There's also the fact that Skyward Sword is widely considered the worst mainline Zelda. I'm sure Nintendo doesn't think about it that way internally, and they seemed defensive in the presentation, saying that it helped pave the way for Breath of the Wild, but it's definitely a factor.

I know there will be a lot of people saying "it's Nintendo what do you expect?" and "it'll still sell well" and, yeah, Nintendo likes to do this (though they've been doing better recently) and it will probably sell decently (though Skyward Sword on the Wii sold under 4 million units, which is not great for a Zelda) but...it sucks.

I think that playing Mario Galaxy on the Switch has made this extra disappointing for me. Because that's another Wii game, widely considered a much better game, which is also from a major Nintendo series, and it came packaged with 2 other mainline Mario games. People complained about Mario 3D All Stars as a value proposition, but...well....

And again, Mario 3D World, which was just released, came with a brand new adventure that some people are already saying could be the best game of the year.

I wonder if they planned to do a Zelda Collection but covid messed it up. Even still they could launch this at $40 as a stand alone. $60 just seems like a lot.

Avatar image for nameredacted
NameRedacted

462

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

Nintendo, like Disney, has weaponized nostalgia (yours and every child and young adult born since the 80's), creating generations of apologists and fanboys.

Overall, Nintendo first-party games usually set a high bar for quality and creativity (except when they don't)... but they can also take a literal shit in a box, slap a picture of Mario or Zelda or whatever on the outside, charge full MSRP, and it will still get a 90+ on Metacritic, sell millions, and be a multiple GOTY winner or Top 10 for the year.

For example: go look at the sales data, metacritic scores, and GOTY awards for objectively bad first-party Nintendo games like Mario Sunshine or Zelda: Skyward Sword. Or look at Zelda: BotW: please name another AAA video game with weapon degradation that didn't get shit on by reviewers for that or BotW's other faults.

Or look at how Nintendo's "online" features and infrastructure still lag behind best practices already established back in the 360 / PS3 era over a decade ago.

Basically, Nintendo has everyone by balls. They routinely get away with shit that gamers at-large would absolutely eviscerate Microsoft or Sony for.

Avatar image for wollywoo
wollywoo

605

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

Nintendo knows what they are doing. Their games cost that much because they know people will pay that much. That's capitalism.

Now, are they being short-sighted by pissing off their fanbase so much with these high prices that it will receive a backlash and sales will drop in the long run?

Nope. The fans always come back.

Avatar image for franzlska
FRANZlSKA

64

Forum Posts

8265

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

Worth noting, on top of all this, that Skyward Sword didn't even launch at 60$ on the Wii, rather it was 50$ for the standalone game. While that doesn't acknowledge the fact that the game required Wii MotionPlus (70$ total for a bundle, I can't find prices for WMP's separate price, but I seem to remember it being around 30$), it just makes it that more ridiculous that they're charging above the original MSRP of the game, 10 years after release.

Avatar image for apewins
apewins

57

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

#5  Edited By apewins

Nintendo games are not found in any bargain bins, everybody who owns a Nintendo platform already knows this. There's nothing stopping EA or Activision from making a Zelda clone and selling it for half a price, except the fact that they don't have the talent to do it. This is the reason Nintendo charges premium on their games, because there is nothing else on the market quite like their games.

I can't help but to see some sense of entitlement from certain gamers (not necessarily from anyone in this thread) who go on saying "well this game has features X and Y, therefore it needs to cost Z". That's not how capitalism works, the customers don't get to set their prices and just because another vendor is selling their wares for cheaper doesn't mean that others have to follow. Everybody is saying that Skyward Sword is maybe the worst mainline Zelda game, so why do people care what it costs? There are plenty of bad and expensive games out there that nobody is talking about, so why single out Zelda? Because worst Zelda or not, people still want to play it.

Avatar image for franzlska
FRANZlSKA

64

Forum Posts

8265

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

#6  Edited By FRANZlSKA

@apewins: Nintendo games aren't special. They don't use some magic formula which can only be comprehended by employees of Nintendo, they're video games. Fairly good ones, yes, but they aren't unique, there are plenty of games out there which do similar things at the same level of quality, at better price points.

The "way capitalism works" is that the producer of a product looks at how much stock they have (in this case they have infinite stock, thanks to digital distribution), and determine what price point they're willing to sell it for relative to how many people would be willing to buy it at a given price point. The fact that this is the main thing anyone is talking about with regards to this announcement shows that people are very clearly not fond of this price point, and demand would be higher if the price were more reasonable.

Nintendo could stand to make far more money if they ever sold their first-party titles for less than 50$, but instead they don't so as to maintain a false sense of commodity and high value to their games. I enjoy Nintendo games as much as the next person, but their pricing system is absolutely ridiculous, and this release is just one more example of their long history in doing exactly this.

Avatar image for bigsocrates
bigsocrates

3072

Forum Posts

44

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

#7 bigsocrates  Online

@apewins: First of all, while Nintendo games may not drop in price as much as other games, Nintendo absolutely does sell older games at reduced price. They literally just released Mario 3D All-Stars, which includes Mario Galaxy, as a compilation with 3 games for $60. The Bayonetta games were released as a collection for Switch. Mario Kart and Hyrule Warriors were bundled with their DLC. The idea that Nintendo always has a big premium isn't true. They're inconsistent.

Also the idea that Nintendo games outsell the games from the big third parties because they're just better is...not correct. Some Nintendo games are huge sellers, but many are not. The Crash Bandicoot remakes sold over 10 million copies. Call of Duty is routinely the top selling game of the year.

It's wild to me that people are arguing that Nintendo is bullet proof and can do this with no consequences less than 4 years after the Wii U era. Nintendo does this stuff for various reasons, but it does, in fact, face consequences.

And the argument that Zelda will sell regardless isn't supported by Skyward Sword itself! Skyward Sword sold under 4 million copies, on the Wii, which had over 100 million systems. The Wii had a notoriously bad attach rate, but Twilight Princess sold more than twice as much (despite also being on Gamecube) and Super Mario Galaxy sold more than 3 times as many copies. Activision and EA would be very disappointed in a big name IP sequel that only sold 4 million copies. Zelda doesn't just automatically mean huge sales.

Nintendo can do whatever it wants, obviously. Sometimes that pans out well, sometimes it doesn't. Star Fox Zero sold like half a million copies, despite being attached to a known franchise. But the idea that Nintendo could crap in a box and fanboys would lap it up just isn't borne out by the numbers. And Nintendo itself doesn't always pursue this strategy. They obviously think this is the right move here, and maybe it will do well for them, but it's not a surefire hit by any means, and there's no reason to believe that other strategies might not do better (Super Mario 3D All Stars WAS a massive hit, for example.)

Avatar image for bigsocrates
bigsocrates

3072

Forum Posts

44

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

#8  Edited By bigsocrates  Online

@franzlska:The thing that gets me about the "this is capitalism" people and the "Nintendo can do whatever it wants because everyone will buy the games" people is that they seem to think that the fact that we live in capitalist systems (because Nintendo is an international company in many markets with different laws) means that everything Nintendo does is perfectly calibrated...like the Wii U era never even occurred.

There are multiple pricing strategies, different companies follow different ones and Nintendo itself employs different strategies at different times. Super Mario 3D All Stars is an actual product that exists. So is Bayonetta 1+2 on Switch.

And Nintendo has duds from time to time. Skyward Sword was, in fact, a dud for a Zelda game. Star Fox Zero was a dud by any reasonable interpretation.

Criticizing Nintendo for its choices both from a consumer and an investor perspective is no different from criticizing any other company. People are super happy to attack Microsoft when it tries to raise the price of XBL Gold (totally deservedly so; it was a terrible move that they had to backtrack on) but Microsoft is actually pretty good at the capitalism thing in general. It's worth 10 times as much as Nintendo is. All companies make pricing mistakes and business mistakes and pursue suboptimal strategies.

That's not to say that this is necessarily the wrong move in this particular context from a short term profit perspective (or even necessarily a long term perspective.) There are too many factors to determine that without a lot more analysis than I'm willing to do. But Nintendo isn't bulletproof or immune from criticism, and not everything they do works.

Animal Crossing New Horizons sold like 30 million copies and is a massive breakout hit.

Animal Crossing Amiibo Festival sold like 500,000 copies and everyone hated it.

Nintendo ain't perfect.

Avatar image for gundato
Gundato

980

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

@franzlska: I feel like a lot of that "only nintendo can make a game this good" comes from the NES. And even THAT feels more like a jab at the knockoffs like Gianna Sisters and limitations in how people used PCs because other NES and even Sega games (No, I refuse to acknowledge Sonic was good) also controlled and played really well.

These days? The Gianna Sisters games are actually REALLY good. Metroid is barely even mentioned in terms of Metroidvanias. A lot of folk believe CTR or (eww) Sonic Racing are better games than the Mario Karts ever were and there are some really good platform fighters that give Smash a run for their money. And even ignoring that BOTW was basically Far Cry 2 with more moblins and less malaria, Ubi and a frigging gacha game have taken that formula, updated it, and done it better already.

Nintendo are still kings of platform fighters but... a lot of that is because people don't necessarily play Smash for the gameplay (although a lot do). They play it for the franchise. They don't want a platform fighter. They want a Smash. Its reminiscent of how so many amazing fighting games of the late 90s/early 00s were ignored because "This isn't Street Fighter or Mortal Kombat" (... and now my mind has gone to a naughty place.)

But the thing is: Nintendo make "indie games" in terms of genre and fidelity. That isn't bad because they polish the hell out of it. But hobbyist level tools have reached the point where "real" indie devs can release things of comparable polish AND are a lot more ready to iterate on the gameplay and try something fun.

I dunno. We'll probably never have it but I would love demographics data on Nintendo stuff these days. Of the, fairly few, kids I know, none seem to really care about Nintendo. Or, more pointedly, they are just games. Some are good. Some are bad. I can't help but feel it is the parents who are insisting "Mario is for kids and I have a kids so I should teach them how great Mario is". And we are rapidly at the point where "the parents" are going to be the Sony kids.... which might be why Activision is so hellbent on bringing back Crash and Spyro.

Avatar image for humanity
Humanity

20998

Forum Posts

5738

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 40

User Lists: 15

#10 Humanity  Online

As many have mentioned - people will pay ridiculous prices for Nintendo products that are not always “Nintendo seal of approval” good. It’s a hell of our own making.

Avatar image for bigsocrates
bigsocrates

3072

Forum Posts

44

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

#11 bigsocrates  Online

@gundato: Nintendo has made really good games for a really long time. Well past the NES days. Mario 64 and Ocarina really were innovative. There is arguably no series with the track record of spectacular games that mainline Mario has.

And Nintendo continues to make games that resonate with people today. Animal Crossing just sold 30 million copies and that's not on the back of NES nostalgia.

I think that calling Zelda BOTW just a Far Cry 2 clone is silly (there are parallels but the puzzles and physics stuff and movement etc... aren't in Far Cry 2; that's like calling Hollow Knight a Mario clone) and I have never played an indie game that approaches the fidelity and polish of a Nintendo game. I literally don't know what you're saying there. I've played Indie games that are as good as many Nintendo games, but have you heard Mario Kart 8's soundtrack? Nintendo's budgets are many multiples of any indie game's and their polish level is (usually) off the charts.

I don't know Nintendo's demographics but I think it will continue to do well among kids for a variety of reasons, chief among them that they offer safety to parents that PlayStation and Xbox never will. Nintendo games are almost all kid friendly, while Sony and Microsoft have pretty much given up on kid friendly franchises (Astrobot is a notable exception). The Switch is bright and colorful and looks like a children's toy, and also can be played by a kid without monopolizing the TV, which makes it attractive to parents for a lot of reasons. Nintendo will never be as dominant among kids as it was in the 80s, but it continues to make products that parents can feel safe with and that will continue to make them attractive to that demo.

Avatar image for wollywoo
wollywoo

605

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

#12  Edited By wollywoo

I guess there are two orthogonal questions here.

1) Are Nintendo's high prices calibrated to maximize their long-term revenue?

and

2) Is it fair to the consumer?

I don't have a strong opinion on (1), really, except that Nintendo is raking in a ton of cash right now and they probably have a better handle on their business model than random folks on the Internet. But sure, it's very possible that with a reduced price they would be more profitable.

For (2) - I would say, yes. Nintendo doesn't owe you anything.

(But also: don't buy Skyward Sword for $60. That game sucks.)

Avatar image for bigsocrates
bigsocrates

3072

Forum Posts

44

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

#13 bigsocrates  Online

@wollywoo: I think there are actually 3 issues here.

1) Are Nintendo's high prices calibrated to maximize their revenue (we don't know how long term they're thinking since companies are often focused on individual quarters)?

Maybe? Nintendo is a very profitable company because it does many things extremely well (making games, making innovative systems, and especially marketing.) But it does some things very poorly (how is it still so bad at online gameplay?) and it's very idiosyncratic, often doing things in objectively bad and dumb ways just because some senior exec thinks that's the way things should be done. I doubt they have nearly as much staff devoted to figuring out pricing strategies and analyzing data as a company like Sony does. It's probably some 60-year-old dude just saying "sell it for $60 it's Zelda!" so that's what they do.

2) Is it fair to the consumer?

Yes in terms of the fact that they are selling a non-essential item for a defined price with no false advertising. You know what Skyward Sword is, you don't need it to live, and there's no bullshit on the pricing. That's fair enough.

3) Is it priced in a way that's satisfying to the consumer so they'll feel good about their purchase?

This isn't a question of fairness it's a question of emotional response. As anyone who has made a purchase through Ticketmaster and seen those tacked on fees knows, it sucks to feel ripped off even if the pricing is transparent and you don't have to buy the item. It's unpleasant to want something and feel gouged, even if you're willing to make the purchase for whatever reason. This isn't a question of fairness under capitalism but about what feels good. Skyward Sword at $60 feels bad, and people are going to complain about it.

That's not why I made this thread. I was more focused on #1, because I thought it was odd for Nintendo to sell Mario 3D All Stars and Mario 3D World + Bowser's Fury as bundles, and then go "Skyward Sword is full price on its own." It just seems inconsistent to me. But I understand people upset about #3.

Things can be fair and still frustrating.

Avatar image for alistercat
alistercat

8296

Forum Posts

7444

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 2

User Lists: 19

I get frustrated about discussing prices. I paid a few hundred pounds to play Persona 4 Golden on the Vita, and was very happy about it. Yet on a lot of places (mostly the steam forums, vile place) I see inane discussions like "for this price it is disgusting anti consumer behaviour, but for $10 less I'd buy it".

As @bigsocrates says above, it's non essential entertainment. It's worth what you'll pay for it. We want games to be cheaper and affordable, but how much something is "worth" to you is going to be different. Repackaging and slightly updating older games shouldn't be automatically way cheaper.

I buy very few games for full price, but it doesn't mean I don't think they're "worth it".

Avatar image for apewins
apewins

57

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

@bigsocrates: I would say the main reason Skyward Sword sold poorly was because it came so late in the Wii's life cycle. It was basically the only big release on that platform that entire year, 3rd party publishers had abandoned it a long time ago and Nintendo were also already thinking about their next console, it's just that Zelda games tend to have very long development cycles that they couldn't release it sooner when the Wii had some life in it.

Nintendo makes mistakes, absolutely. But are gamers leaving Nintendo platforms in droves to go play Xbox games that are much better value? I think the proof is there in the market that Nintendo knows what they're doing and tens of millions of consumers can't be wrong.

This conversation reminds me a lot about the Super Mario 3D All-Stars saga. Every gaming enthusiast tells me that it's 1 bad game, 1 outdated game and 1 decent game at 60$. But if it really is such a bad product, where is all this outrage coming from? To me it looks like a lot of people pretending not to care that clearly care a lot.

Avatar image for fistoh
Fistoh

250

Forum Posts

255

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 2

User Lists: 2

I don't think this is any stretch by Nintendo standards, if anything this is perfectly in line with them; their games come out at $60 and will remain that way until the gradual increase in entropy over time causes the heat death of the universe.

I'm not sure who out there has any passion for and/or is willing to spend $60 on a game whose reputation seems to only decrease with time. I thought Skyward Sword was fine at the time, I even enjoyed parts of it, but 10 years later I can't even imagine being in a place where I'd have any inclination to re-engage myself with the riveting conversations with your computer sword or the thrilling combat sequences against a giant furry lima bean with some bad toe fungus, even less pay full price for it. God speed to the people who do have that inclination, but I have a feeling their numbers are relatively few.

I could see this being good for kids now who are Zelda fans but were too young/not-alive when Skyward Sword came out to play it and want to go back and play it for themselves without having to hook up a Wii, but still 60 god-damn dollars for an up-rezzed Wii game is eye-rolling.

Avatar image for navster15
navster15

390

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

@apewins: I don’t think blaming an aging console holds water here. The Wii by 2011 was ubiquitous, and despite it gathering dust, a good game could have sold well given the massive install base. A good example of this happening was Pokemon Red/Blue releasing on the past its prime Gameboy and selling gangbusters. Skyward Sword’s underperformance was completely on the fact that it didn’t appeal to Wii owners.

Avatar image for bigsocrates
bigsocrates

3072

Forum Posts

44

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

#18 bigsocrates  Online

@apewins: All of the things you list are reasons why the game could have/should have done well. It was the final big game for a major platform with a huge install base and not much competition. Late games actually have a history of doing very well. Ghost of Tsushima is the biggest original IP launch on PS4. GTA V came out just before the Xbox One/PS4.

A late Zelda game with a clear field coming out a year before the next system launched could easily have been a huge hit if not for the terrible word of mouth.

Compare it to Majora's Mask, which launched in a similar situation on N64. Skyward Sword slightly outsold it in raw numbers, but Majora is the 12th best selling N64 game of all time while Twilight is 22nd for Wii. And the N64 had one third of the install base.

Nobody is arguing that Nintendo isn't a strong company but it has made huge blunders in the past. I still think it's odd that people are arguing that nobody is abandoning Nintendo platforms when...everyone did abandon Nintendo's platform in 2012. They made a series of blunders and basically had to give up on a whole generation. Obviously overpricing one game that's going to cost almost nothing to develop isn't going to have a massive impact, but I don't think we should just assume that because Nintendo makes a decision it's the right decision.

A lot of people confuse what they want (good games cheap) with what makes sense from a business perspective. There is, of course, some overlap but obviously there are lots of times when giving people a worse version of something is more profitable. Super Mario 3D All Stars was clearly made on the cheap and that's disappointing and frustrating, but it was a big commercial success and it's not clear that having a better presentation or including Galaxy 2 would have changed that.

We'll have to see how Skyward Sword HD the Retutorializing does.

Avatar image for finaldasa
FinalDasa

3523

Forum Posts

9640

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 9

User Lists: 14

#19 FinalDasa  Moderator

Link's Awakening is full price. They've been doing this for years and so long as people buy it at that price it won't change.

Avatar image for bigsocrates
bigsocrates

3072

Forum Posts

44

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

#20 bigsocrates  Online

@finaldasa: Link's Awakening was a total ground up remake. While those are sometimes not full price it's more understandable when they are. It was essentially a brand new game (and it had a substantial enhancement in the form of the Zelda dungeon builder.)

Mario Galaxy, on the other hand, was a straight up up-res of a Wii game with some altered controls and that was part of a 3 game compilation for $60 so while Nintendo definitely has sold old games on their own for full price before, it's not something they always do or even do that regularly (other than Wii U games, which are basically 'hey it's new to you because nobody owned this thing.')

Avatar image for finaldasa
FinalDasa

3523

Forum Posts

9640

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 9

User Lists: 14

#21 FinalDasa  Moderator

@bigsocrates: Oh I know there is a variety in the amount of work they need to do to bring games onto modern hardware. But once they set that standard they just stuck with it.

It's probably much easier to slap $60 on all titles of this ilk rather than sit and calculate the actual cost.

So they just put it out, it sells, and they don't think twice about it.

Avatar image for bigsocrates
bigsocrates

3072

Forum Posts

44

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

#22 bigsocrates  Online

@finaldasa:But there is no standard?

Super Mario Galaxy:

  • Also a Wii game
  • Just as big (if not bigger) franchise
  • Big hit on the Wii and widely regarded as an all time classic.
  • Part of a compilation.

Super Mario 3D World:

  • Wii U game (more recent)
  • Just as big (if not bigger) franchise
  • Massive new DLC included.

Super Mario Kart 8 Deluxe:

  • Wii U game (more recent)
  • Just as big (if not bigger) franchise
  • All prior DLC included and some new stuff.

Obviously there are some examples of more bare bones ports (like Pikmin 3 and Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze) but those at least looked like Switch games already, and they had some enhancements.

I'm not saying this is unprecedented, I'm just saying it surprised me how aggressive it was after Super Mario 3D All Stars and Super Mario 3D World. Nintendo seemed to be saying "we're going to sweeten up these ports with some added value" and now they're turning right back around and saying "actually screw it, worst Zelda, $60."

Maybe there will be some extras etc... to try to justify the price but you'd think they would have mentioned that in the Direct. Then again it's Nintendo so who knows.

Avatar image for finaldasa
FinalDasa

3523

Forum Posts

9640

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 9

User Lists: 14

#23 FinalDasa  Moderator

@bigsocrates: I meant pricing standard. They know people will purchase X amount at $60 versus Y amount for less than $60. So they know that no matter the cost of development they will probably make money on the product.

They have gotten slightly better at sales. So there's potential that they at least drop their prices at some point.

Either way, I agree with you, I think these prices are too expensive and Nintendo has a pattern of charging too much for older games for seemingly no reason. And worse yet it hurts and confuses expectations for port work and how much it does take to make and release some of these games.

Avatar image for brian_
brian_

327

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

I have to imagine game length plays a lot in the pricing of these things. Either in terms of it meaning more work has to be done (I don't know anything about game development, so that may or may not be the case. I have no idea.) or they just feel more justified putting a $60 price on a longer game. You know? It's probably easier to slap a $60 price on an old 40 hour game than it is to slap it on an old 10 hour game, disregarding the debate about what the quality of each are.

Avatar image for bigsocrates
bigsocrates

3072

Forum Posts

44

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

#25 bigsocrates  Online

@finaldasa: You're right that Nintendo does not like to sell "full" games for less than full price as a native application (they did sell Wii games on Wii U digitally for reduced price.) They are happy to sell smaller downloadable games for very cheap but they seem to have a real stumbling block on mid-priced games that no other publisher seems to suffer from.

But they could have done something here to make this a more attractive prospect by either bundling in other games or additional content (which may be coming) like they did with the recent Mario releases. Maybe it was Covid that prevented that from happening.

@brian_:

Maybe...but the games aren't priced by length when they release. Mario Galaxy and Skyward Sword cost the same when they came out. And on Gamecube they released a bunch of Zeldas in a compilation disc and those were long games (that was, admittedly, a long time ago.) It would be pretty arbitrary but it is possible.

Avatar image for itsrigged
itsrigged

5

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

I think I'm one of those rare consumers that has been turned off by Nintendo's pricing to the degree that I'm not interested in future consoles from them. When I bought the switch, about a year ago I was looking at the titles I had missed out on. I wanted to get Mario Kart when I got the console a year ago, and the 60 dollars it was priced at just seemed like a lot of money. I think I would have fun with Mario Kart and the girlfriend and I would probably play it for a dozen hours or so, but there are lots of good games to play that don't cost $50.

I generally like Nintendo titles and want to try them out, but whenever I look at Switch games the value just isn't there for me. The Idea of paying $50 for a little bit of an up-res'd Skyward Sword seems awful. I remember looking at the price of that Donkey Kong game and shaking my head in disbelief. The recent Mario ports I also wanted to play, as a somehow missed playing Galaxy, but so little work was done to them that they also seem like a poor value. Its weird comparing Nintendo pricing to pricing on other platforms. People say not to compare them, but why shouldn't we be comparing them to other companies games? Games like God of War and Horizon are usually like $10 on Playstation and Gamepass on Xbox has enough content that you don't really need to buy any games on the platform. The PC was first to having crazy cheap games with things like steam bundles and Humble bundles, and now it has things like the Epic Game store giving away games, and Gamepass for PC. I guess I adjusted to this pricing model years ago because I can't remember the last time I spent $60 on a non-Nintendo game.

Looking back, I realize that I owned a Wii and a 3ds that I barely touched. I played Wii for about 40 hours, and the 3ds for maybe 10 hours total. I told myself that maybe Nintendo just isn't for me, and then for some reason I did it again and bought a Switch. I've been sitting on this Switch for a year and a half and I played through Odyssey which was great, and tried to play Zelda but I bounced off of it. I think I would try some other things but at $50 a title everything just seems like a gamble. This also makes the Hardware feel expensive too, because these $50 titles are all I really want to play on the platform.

This is probably silly but I've always had a sneaking suspicion is that other people solve the Nintendo value problem in their minds. They tell themselves they loved all the games that they spent $60 on, even games like Luigi's Mansion 3 and Mario + Rabbids. Luigi's Mansion is a game, where if it were on Playstation, I could have picked up for 20 bucks a couple years after it released to try it out and found it to be an amusing if mediocre game. Yet I bought it at full price and I feel burned by it. I feel burned by Smash and Mario Maker 2, and Splatoon 2. And I feel burned because of the Switch hardware and its shitty Joycons and battery life.

I guess Nintendo is just not for me, but I look at the passion people have for any and all Nintendo products and I just don't understand how they could see things so differently. Wildly popular games tend to hit for me, or at least I get what they are going for and respect them. I think I get the draw of Nintendo games and the look so appealing to me that Nintendo has duped me into buying two more consoles after buying my disused Wii. The presentation of Nintendo games is just immaculate, and they seem so fun, but I start playing them and the parts of my brain that l feel like should be lighting up just don't light up. I've felt like a crazy person for the past decade, because I keep trying these Nintendo games that everyone raves about and I just can't get into them.

Avatar image for bigsocrates
bigsocrates

3072

Forum Posts

44

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

#27 bigsocrates  Online

@itsrigged: That sounds like me but for handheld games. I basically can't get into handheld gaming. There are a few exceptions through the years, but I own a 3DS and a Vita and I've probably put less than 50 hours into each of them except for Animal Crossing on 3DS, which I admittedly played every day on my commute for a few months (I was on a train; I'm not some lunatic who games while driving.)

One of the reasons that I love the Switch is that I can play all those portable games everyone raves about on a TV with a proper controller and actually enjoy them.

Personally I've bought plenty of games for $60 recently so Nintendo prices don't seem high, but I view the Switch as a much more selective system than the PlayStation or Xbox. I basically only buy a game on Switch if it's the only place I can get it (like Hades) both because of the pricing issues you identify and because I just prefer the other ecosystems and more powerful hardware. That being said I can name a dozen Switch games I absolutely loved, so I don't regret the system. And I don't have that syndrome where I need to justify every Nintendo game as great. Kirby: Star Allies was mediocre, and New Super Mario Bros. U Deluxe was very so-so. I regret buying them at full price. But Mario Odyssey, Breath of the Wild, Super Mario 3D World + Bowser's Fury, Animal Crossing New Horizons, Smash, Mario Kart 8 etc... were all very much my jam, and I had a lot of fun with Xenoblade Chronicles Definitive Edition (another Nintendo Wii game that was heavily enhanced for Switch, to get back on topic) and some other stuff, so the Switch was worth it for them.

I'd tell you just to stop buying Nintendo stuff it's not for you, and you should, but given that I actually own 2 3DSes (one normal and one 'new' 3DS) I would be a massive hypocrite. I feel exactly the way you describe whenever anyone raves about a Vita game. I want to get it, I do, but I can't.

And I loved LocoRoco Remastered and Gravity Rush Remastered on PS4 so it's clearly the handheld experience that I don't like, and not the games themselves.

Avatar image for hippie_genocide
hippie_genocide

2551

Forum Posts

1

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 2

To say that Nintendo has a variety of pricing strategies is misleading. I mean, yes, but it ranges from "modestly insulting" to "highway robbery". And with Skyward Sword, it's business as usual. Look at Tropical Freeze or Mario Kart 8. Throwing in some modicum of new content should not justify a full priced game. Hell this goes back to when they first started releasing their NES Classics on the GBA. Those games were $20 (!) a pop for roms of NES games. Pretty sure the HD updates to Twilight Princess and Wind Waker were full price when they came out on the Wii U too. Not sure what else people would've been expecting with Skyward Sword, but this surprises me none at all.

Avatar image for itsrigged
itsrigged

5

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

@bigsocrates: I think the handheld experience is a part of it for me too. I'm just not physically comfortable playing handheld games and looking at the screen. On commutes I don't think I am capable of getting sucked into a game with other people around me. I would just as soon browse the internet or whatever on my phone. I should probably try Zelda again on the TV, I walked away from it thinking it seemed neat but it was a little slow and didn't quite grab me. Always thought Xenoblade seemed pretty good aside from the super anime-ish stuff. I want the Mario/Bowsers Fury game but yeah, 50 bucks.

Avatar image for bigsocrates
bigsocrates

3072

Forum Posts

44

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

#30 bigsocrates  Online

@itsrigged: If you already own BOTW I would give it a shot. I consider that my favorite game of all time...and I didn't really like it in handheld mode. All the things that made it immersive and magical for me were stripped away when it was so small, and I don't like the Joycons etc...

Mario 3D World + Bowser's Fury is great but yeah, it's a lot of money for an old game and a very short new game.

Xenoblade Chronicles is almost nothing but anime bullshit. The 2 things it has going for it are a totally wild and interesting world (which has aged a lot) and an extreme helping of anime bullshit. It is so anime that even most anime I've watched is substantially less anime.

Avatar image for ll_exile_ll
ll_Exile_ll

3115

Forum Posts

25

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 2

@apewins: All of the things you list are reasons why the game could have/should have done well. It was the final big game for a major platform with a huge install base and not much competition. Late games actually have a history of doing very well. Ghost of Tsushima is the biggest original IP launch on PS4. GTA V came out just before the Xbox One/PS4.

A late Zelda game with a clear field coming out a year before the next system launched could easily have been a huge hit if not for the terrible word of mouth.

The Wii had a very different life cycle compared to most other consoles. It burst out of the gate as a huge cross demographic fad, but by the time Skyward Sword came out the fad was long over. You mentioned yourself the Wii had a notoriously bad attach rate, but that was only partially true. In the grand scheme it had a bad attach rate, but there were a handful of exceptions which had some of the highest attach rates for any game ever.

The Wii had 3 games over 30 million sales, with Mario Kart at 37 million. The highest selling PS2 game is at 17 million, and that's the best selling console ever. However, these mega sales numbers were long over by the time Skyward Sword came out. There is only 1 game among the top 20 best selling Wii games released after 2009 (Donkey Kong Country returns, 6+ million sold, number 15). Skyward Sword is one of only 2 games released as late as 2011 in the top 50 best selling games on the Wii. People had moved on from the Wii by this point.

This is also reflected in the overall sales for the Wii, by 2011 Wii sales were in freefall, it had sold about 85% of its total lifetime sales in the first 4 years. The Wii was basically on life support, and it was neither selling consoles nor selling games at that point. People had moved on.

Avatar image for bigsocrates
bigsocrates

3072

Forum Posts

44

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

#32 bigsocrates  Online

@ll_exile_ll: This is mostly but not entirely accurate (Galaxy 2 and Wii Party are both 2010 games in the top 20, as is Just Dance 2, so there are actually 4) but there's also a chicken and egg issue there in that there are basically no games released after 2010 that you'd expect to be huge hits but weren't. The software lineup really took a nose dive after that point, and the games that came out and were well-received still sold pretty well.

But the point isn't exactly whether Skyward Sword's quality was directly responsible for its mediocre sales. The point is that Nintendo's strategies aren't flawless and beyond question just because it's doing well now. It's had some pretty dark periods recently (end of Wii era and Wii U era were both bad) and there's no reason to assume that the $60 pricing here is optimal just because Nintendo decided to offer it at that price.

Avatar image for lionsy
Lionsy

183

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

I'm just glad I tuned out after OoT, I played up to the Wii game (The one you turn into a wolf) and it had got so hand-holdy by then it stopped being fun, I wanted a world to explore like the NES and Snes games (And to a lesser extent OoT), I am so glad Breath of the wild exists, It feels like playing the original.

I have no interest in playing any of the new games, so I am glad the money isn't going to get tempted out of my bank account, certainly not for £60 when It looks like the effort put into it is making it run on a different CPU architecture (admittedly no small feat) and some button remapping options.

Avatar image for onemanarmyy
Onemanarmyy

5552

Forum Posts

431

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 2

User Lists: 0

#34  Edited By Onemanarmyy

Nintendo, child friendly but not friendly for the parents wallet :/ I still remember my sister buying a Wii U on a whim and realizing that this partygame rather has you buy 1 more wii-mote instead of letting you use the same two buttons on the Wii U pad. I guess that's all in the name of fairness. Don't want 1 player to have to hold a heavier controller after all :)

When i look at TV commercials, it's no surprise why Nintendo is so popular with kids. These colorful games stand out from the screen. It's joyful, it sounds great and uplifting, it looks fun, there's no violence. If you're a parent with loving memories about your gaming-time back in the day and you want to introduce your kid to this world, Nintendo makes a whole lot of sense.

I do wonder whether Sony & Microsoft are focusing enough on the younger gamers. My gut just tells me that there's a rich vein of gold to be struck in that segment, without having to reinvent the gameplay wheel. Sony's first party output was mostly aimed at the older teen / adult market. Microsoft has been all about shooting guns and driving realistic cars. Shouldn't their first party studio's make sure that there's a steady stream of colorful kid-friendly games tied to their platform that they can show off in commercials?

No Caption Provided

Wouldn't they stand to gain by focusing more on providing quality games for the younger player? Or is competing with Nintendo on that front a non-starter, even if a gameplatform is supplemented by colorful kidfriendly third party games like Untitled Goose Game and Fall Guys?

That seems like quite a potent audience to capture, but it requires more than 1 or 2 colorful exclusives in a world where Nintendo produces 4 of these kind of games in a good year. Perhaps Sackboy and Astrobot are aimed at that audience, although i doubt that kids prefer the soft textured look of Sackboy or the hardware nostalgia of Astrobot over the bright primary colors that games like Mario,Mario Kart, Kirby, AC and Yoshi unleash on your screen. I feel like it's up to the competition to step it up and not make Nintendo the natural no-brainer choice for parents with young children. I grew up on Edutainment and Humongeous Entertainment. Where's the studio that focuses completely on childfriendly gaming and plops out 1-4 colorful games per year that immediatly makes kids look up to their parents with hearts in their eyes?

Shoutout to that DC Super Hero Girls game announced yesterday. It was completely clear that it was not a game aimed at me, but i immediatly saw dads mention how their daughters were completely into it. That's the kind of stuff the other platforms need to offer. It kind of surprises me that an industry with so many kids partaking, doesn't have all that many games that are clearly aimed at them.

Avatar image for rebel_scum
Rebel_Scum

1560

Forum Posts

1

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 1

User Lists: 3

It's definitely an announcement that leaves a bad taste in the mouth.

Avatar image for raven10
Raven10

2375

Forum Posts

376

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 27

User Lists: 5

@gundato: Something I can say as someone who has been in gaming retail for many years at this point, is that Nintendo has had two key advantages over the competition since the Wii era. First off, the multiplayer is largely offline and even when it is online there is limited voice chat. For a lot of parents their main concern when choosing a game console is how the experience will effect their child's development. And for a lot, the thought of them getting on Xbox Live and hearing the hatred spewed by kids on there is reason enough to go with Nintendo. The second most common reason is that Nintendo systems are usually a fair bit cheaper than their competitors. I know a lot of parents who would get the 3DS for their kid as a first system because it was fairly cheap and was played mostly offline.

Now the fact that they were familiar with the games also played a role oftentimes. I think they felt more comfortable buying Mario and Zelda and such as opposed to some newer games series they didn't play as much or at all. So local multiplayer is a big selling point. For the Switch the portability is a huge selling point. I've sold plenty of Switches off the idea that their kid can take the system with them on a road trip and then keep playing it on the screen in a hotel and then keep playing it when they get back home. Or that they can bring it to a friend's house and connect it to their TV. The entire portability concept is a major selling point for a parent, especially because you can also then have your older kids or teens use it in docked mode to play the likes of Fortnite and Apex Legends. The value proposition, basically, is really incomparable. It is something the whole family can use and enjoy both at home and on the go and it limits childrens' exposure to trolls online. The familiarity of the characters is maybe 10% of the argument. Basically if a parent comes in saying that they have no idea what games to get, I point out that the Switch has all the games they would have played as children. I point to Mario and Zelda and Kirby and Donkey Kong and that usually makes them feel more confident in making a purchase, but I would describe it as a fairly minor component of the overall pitch.

Avatar image for haz_kaj
Haz_Kaj

201

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

60 dollars isn't the issue for me. Nintendo do have done a lot worse.

Ss is just a bad zelda game. I would happily pay 60 for Wind waker HD.

Avatar image for isomeri
isomeri

3345

Forum Posts

296

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 20

I'm interested in trying this game out, but not at this price. The same goes for Bowser's Fury.

I don't think I've bought any Nintendo games since Mario Maker 2 because of their incredibly high prices in comparison to games on other platforms. There's simply too many games on Game Pass or on sale for 20-40 euros on the Xbox, PC or PlayStation for me to justify paying double for a Nintendo game. Especially as the technical capabilities of the Switch are really starting to show their age when compared to the really good 120fps 4K HDR games I'm getting included in my Game Pass subscription.

Avatar image for sethmode
SethMode

2855

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

@haz_kaj: Oh, you mean the one people actually want as opposed to the one no one wants? Now now, that wouldn't be very Nintendo of them.

Avatar image for efesell
Efesell

5965

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

#40  Edited By Efesell  Online

Skyward Sword is a perfectly reasonable 7.5 Zelda. The .5 is cause of Groose.

Make it a solid 8 if I could skip the intro.

Avatar image for permanentsigh
permanentsigh

163

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

No Caption Provided

Avatar image for noobsauce
noobsauce

343

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

Fine with me. $60 well saved.

Avatar image for lonelyspacepanda
LonelySpacePanda

1034

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 17

User Lists: 11

Were TW and WW HD not $60 at launch. That'd be what I'd compare to for fairness.

I'm surprised people aren't up at arms about Bowser's Fury instead. Feels pretty scummy to me for Nintendo to make a new Mario game that seems almost completely unrelated to 3D World and force you to buy a $60 port of 3D World to access it. I'd love to play it but have no interest in buying 3D World again.

Avatar image for bigsocrates
bigsocrates

3072

Forum Posts

44

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

#44 bigsocrates  Online

@lonelyspacepanda: They were $60 at launch, during Nintendo's commercial nadir. Nintendo has been doing better (in some things) recently. Nobody has argued that this is something without precedent but there are lots of examples of Nintendo pricing less aggressively recently.

It's not true that Bowser's Fury is unrelated to 3D World. It uses many 3D World assets and its move set comes from that game. It's a very different game, but it is built on top of 3D World's assets, with some new stuff added and, of course, a new camera.

There are people upset about Bowser's Fury, but that package as a whole is attractive. Early adopters get screwed a lot and are just kind of used to it (Mortal Kombat XI and really all fighting games are particularly nasty at this) so that's pretty normal in gaming. More importantly the Wii U was a massive flop so most people didn't get 3D World in the first place, so the number of people who would have to double dip is relatively low, which reduces outrage.

Avatar image for lonelyspacepanda
LonelySpacePanda

1034

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 17

User Lists: 11

It's a weird thing because it's not completely detached from 3D World but it also feels like this weird demo of what may be the future of 3D Mario. As such, want to experience it but I doubt they will ever offer it as a stand-alone downloadable title even though that would be standard for any other publisher/platform (makes me think of stuff like Far Cry spin-offs).

As stupid as sounds, I'm almost happy to pay $60 for SS to spite all the haters. It's one of my favorite games of that generation and the amount of hate it gets is dumbfounding. I'm of the minority that did not enjoy BOTW very much (or any open-world game of that style) and really wish Nintendo would still make Zelda games of this style, so there is value in saying with your money that hey fans like us still exist and would like another game in this style too! Also hopeful they make adjustments to the tutorials and other issues that would make a flawed gem into just a gem. It stands to benefit the most from an "HD" upgrade (yes, it already is HD on Wii U). I don't think $60 is such a big deal if they are making meaningful changes which them seem to be. This is easily the hardest game to port/upgrade given how specific the controls were (not just Wii but required Wii Motion Plus).

Avatar image for bigsocrates
bigsocrates

3072

Forum Posts

44

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

#46 bigsocrates  Online

@lonelyspacepanda: I don't think Bowser's Fury will ever be sold separately, and it does suck for Wii U owners that they get the shaft here. Hopefully Nintendo will have a "Player's Choice" label for Switch games at some point and release the whole package at $20-30. They've done that with other systems, and since this thing looks to be selling very well it would probably qualify.

If you really like Skyward Sword then you should hope it does well, and that the "haters" would want to buy it at the price offered (since doing so would incentivize more games.) I don't personally think that Nintendo is likely to go back to these types of Zeldas (they are already making 3D Zelda and 2D Zelda AND licensing Zelda spinoffs like Age of Calamity and Cadence of Hyrule) but I think there's definitely a market for them.

If they went in and fixed the various issues with the game I think the price would be easier to swallow. Especially if they added additional content like they did with Link's Awakening (beyond remaking the whole game.)

This edit will also create new pages on Giant Bomb for:

Beware, you are proposing to add brand new pages to the wiki along with your edits. Make sure this is what you intended. This will likely increase the time it takes for your changes to go live.

Comment and Save

Until you earn 1000 points all your submissions need to be vetted by other Giant Bomb users. This process takes no more than a few hours and we'll send you an email once approved.