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XNA dev: "Downloadable games are too cheap"

XNA dev: "Downloadable games are too cheap"

Fouts isn't the only person to complain about prices on Xbox Live Arcade as Braid was controversially priced too.

According to Weapon of Choice developer Nathan Fouts the vast majority of games on Xbox Live Arcade are underpriced and should be dramatically more expensive.

"I want to go on the record and say I feel like most downloadable games are under-priced," the indie developer told MTV.

Fouts, who had worked on Resistance: Fall of Man before turning independent, said that the pricing structure was controlled solely by Microsoft and that the situation was ridiculous.

"Microsoft does not allow for user-defined price points like 799 Points or even 100-Point increments like 500, 600, 700, etc. For a bigger game like Weapon of Choice, only having two options, one of which is double the first option, makes the decision difficult," he explained.

Fouts isn't the first developer to moan about Microsoft's pricing either. Jonathan Blow, developer of Braid, also claimed he was frustrated with the price points too and said the only reason he priced his game at 1200 MS points was to keep Microsoft happy. Blow claimed he would have much preferred a lower price.

Fouts' Weapon of Choice launched as an XBLA title recently - have you had a chance to play it? Let us know your thoughts in the forums.

21 Comments

Discuss in the forums Reply
[USRF]Obiwan 25th November 2008, 10:30 Quote
I wanted to say: "who cares" but then I thought I rather not say that.
Blademrk 25th November 2008, 10:30 Quote
Thought I'd downloaded all the XBLA demos but I don't think I remember that one.
Bursar 25th November 2008, 11:06 Quote
It's a 'Community Game'. Unfortunately most of them are a bit pants, and barely worth 400 points, let alone 800 or higher.
Veles 25th November 2008, 11:08 Quote
While I can understand his frustration at not being able to make a game say 700 points, **** like 799 is a massive no-no in my book. Firstly I think it's a retarded way of making people think something is cheaper than it is, and then we'd have a ton of loose change points we wouldn't be able to spend.
UrbanMarine 25th November 2008, 12:32 Quote
I'd rather MS drop the point system and just do cash straight up like PS3.
D3s3rt_F0x 25th November 2008, 12:33 Quote
All you need for the Xbox 360 is Atomic tank, without that game your life is not worth living.
Veles 25th November 2008, 12:53 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by UrbanMarine
I'd rather MS drop the point system and just do cash straight up like PS3.

They used to have that system on the old xbox, but they changed to the points system. It allows you to get the DLC cheaper than RRP at least.
UrbanMarine 25th November 2008, 12:57 Quote
Ah, I didn't know that...thx.
dyzophoria 25th November 2008, 13:10 Quote
underpriced? if it was priced more, I doubt anyone will buy anything
whisperwolf 25th November 2008, 13:16 Quote
I'm trying to work it out, a 1200 points game is about £9.50? and 800 point game is about £6.30? is that about right. if so it kinda tells me why i haven't bought anything from xbox live, i think i'll stick to buying the big games when they hit the sales sub £20 thanks.
TreeDude 25th November 2008, 13:18 Quote
Hell no the games are not under priced. Especially 800 point games which have 200 point DLC too.

We need more Arcade compilation disks. Those things are a steal.
PQuiff 25th November 2008, 13:59 Quote
Yeah cause we really need anotehr 1200 points castle crashers!
Good game...with pants online(crashes unable to join games etc) then we get charged more points for addons...WTF!!
AlexB 25th November 2008, 14:08 Quote
I haven't bought any, as imho they're too much, as 99% of the games are shockingly pants.
Faulk_Wulf 25th November 2008, 15:57 Quote
Slightly off topic but I'm guessing by the massive out of context use of "Pants" in these posts that it is a replacement word like when I say "ftw" and get cheesecake?
eternum 25th November 2008, 17:52 Quote
or you're just not British :p
themax 25th November 2008, 18:28 Quote
He'll get used to it eventually. I've actually caught myself wanting to use the same terms when I post around these boards without thinking. Guess you guys are starting to rub off on me :)
Cadillac Ferd 25th November 2008, 19:13 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Veles
While I can understand his frustration at not being able to make a game say 700 points, **** like 799 is a massive no-no in my book. Firstly I think it's a retarded way of making people think something is cheaper than it is, and then we'd have a ton of loose change points we wouldn't be able to spend.

MAN! How annoying would that be? You could only purchase points in gigantic block intervals then some jackass starts pricing things at 799 and other weird amounts.

I really wish that they just got rid of the whole Microsoft Points system all together and just charged you for purchases as you made them. I feel like people would've not been so upset about the pricing of things like Braid if they'd just seen the price directly in real dollars. 15$ for a really good (albeit short) game seems to feel less like a burden to me. That's like 1/4th the price of a "real" game and a game as good as Braid is definitely worth more than that.
Joeymac 25th November 2008, 19:41 Quote
aaahahahaa. Too expensive. That's funny.
Firstly, I don't know much the arcade games are. The fact that they use points and don't show you the price means it's extremely rare I would even consider it.
Secondly, I had a quick look at the community games section, watched a crappy promo video which appeared to be running in fast forward. Then I looked at the games and laughed that they were charging for them.... and with no demo's. Who on earth would buy them??

Microsoft are really stupid if they think this points system actually makes them more money. It's a massive barrier in front of impulse purchases. Especially the video rental business, that's built on impulse purchases.
themax 25th November 2008, 20:54 Quote
It does make them money though. Thanks to their staggered point setup, you almost always end up with more points than you needed to purchase the game. It may not seem much but if you take the potential millions of users on Xbox Live Gold who buy Arcade games, those left over points add up to a nice little chunk Microsoft rakes in.
Firehed 26th November 2008, 01:28 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Veles
They used to have that system on the old xbox, but they changed to the points system. It allows you to get the DLC cheaper than RRP at least.
It allows you to get DLC at whatever rate they charge - it doesn't matter whatsoever what the currency is.

Personally I won't touch any DLC that's not free because of the points system. Any sort of payment account bothers me - I always end up with points, credits, or cash left over that does me no good at all and turns into profit for the service provider. I don't care that it enables micropayments - that's not my problem, and most of the stuff that only costs a buck isn't worth buying anyways. Combined with the fact that it adds another barrier to entry on purchasing a product... blah.
Blademrk 26th November 2008, 11:22 Quote
I tried the demo of Weapon of Choice and by the time I decided which character to play as the time restriction on the demo had ended and I had to reboot it :( Dodgy demo mechanics don't help sell games either.
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