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Activision CEO Warns Sony That the PS3 Needs a Price Cut

Soulskill posted more than 5 years ago | from the take-the-hint-sony dept.

PlayStation (Games) 149

Bobby Kotick, President and CEO of Activision, one of the largest game companies in the world, has come out with a none-too-subtle warning to Sony that they need to seriously consider a price drop on the Playstation 3. Rumors have been circulating for months that such a drop was forthcoming, but Sony has staunchly denied that they had any plans to drop prices, Kotick said, "The PlayStation 3 is losing a bit of momentum and they don't make it easy for me to support the platform. It's expensive to develop for the console, and the Wii and the Xbox are just selling better. ... They have to cut the price, because if they don't, the attach rates [the number of games each console owner buys] are likely to slow. If we are being realistic, we might have to stop supporting Sony." While it's unlikely that Activision would follow through with such a threat, it definitely adds to the pressure Sony is feeling to lower the PS3's price. Sony issued a brief response which said nothing of consequence.

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When planning on lowering prices, best to shut up (5, Informative)

BadAnalogyGuy (945258) | more than 5 years ago | (#28399923)

Sony execs aren't dumb. They aren't going to announce price cuts until they happen.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Osborne_effect [wikipedia.org]

Re:When planning on lowering prices, best to shut (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28399987)

Are you kidding? Sony has a long sordid history of leaking stuff long before it happens.

Re:When planning on lowering prices, best to shut (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28400035)

Yeah, but leaking a price cut does nothing for you, unless you were looking to lose a lot of money.

Re:When planning on lowering prices, best to shut (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28399991)

But don't worry, MS fanboys are going to speculate the shit out of a price cut until no one wants to buy a PS3 due to the upcoming "price cut".

Re:When planning on lowering prices, best to shut (0, Troll)

daath93 (1356187) | more than 5 years ago | (#28400097)

MS Fanboys == people who don't pay $400 to play final fantasy, or to watch blu-rays at 175 watts (vs around 30 watts for a stand-alone player. Some jerkoff always has to mention how they can watch movies on them too. Usually the same jerkoffs who slap you in the face about global warming).

Those fanboys?

Re:When planning on lowering prices, best to shut (1)

Gordonjcp (186804) | more than 5 years ago | (#28400161)

Some jerkoff always has to mention how they can watch movies on them too. Usually the same jerkoffs who slap you in the face about global warming

I have carbon-neutral hydroelectric power, you insensitive clod!

Re:When planning on lowering prices, best to shut (0, Offtopic)

Gnavpot (708731) | more than 5 years ago | (#28400289)

I have carbon-neutral hydroelectric power, you insensitive clod!

What happens to that power if you don't use it?

My guess would be that it is sold to another country which then does not have to produce this power using fossile fuels.

So yes, unless your power grid is completely separated from the world (Iceland?), your power consumption will also affect the world's CO2-outlet.

(The above does not mean that I necessarily believe that global warming is caused by CO2.)

Re:When planning on lowering prices, best to shut (1)

sznupi (719324) | more than 5 years ago | (#28400475)

(The above does not mean that I necessarily believe that global warming is caused by CO2.)

Oh, I didn't realize it was a matter of beliefs...

Re:When planning on lowering prices, best to shut (3, Funny)

Kokuyo (549451) | more than 5 years ago | (#28400715)

Now you know better.

Re:When planning on lowering prices, best to shut (1)

zippthorne (748122) | more than 4 years ago | (#28401235)

Well, over the last decade, what has the CO2 level been doing? What has the global temperature done?

Re:When planning on lowering prices, best to shut (2, Insightful)

Gnavpot (708731) | more than 4 years ago | (#28402745)

Well, over the last decade, what has the CO2 level been doing? What has the global temperature done?

Increased, both of them.

Now, over the last decade, what has the number of doping tests in cykling done?

Right, they have increased. This proves that both global warming AND CO2 level is caused by doping tests.

Correlation is not causation.

Re:When planning on lowering prices, best to shut (1, Offtopic)

sznupi (719324) | more than 4 years ago | (#28403429)

Ah, I see; well, I shouldn't be surprised that believers tend to ignore parts of reality they don't like...

Re:When planning on lowering prices, best to shut (0, Offtopic)

Gnavpot (708731) | more than 4 years ago | (#28403951)

Ah, I see; well, I shouldn't be surprised that believers tend to ignore parts of reality they don't like...

I have not expressed any personal beliefs on a causation between CO2 and global warming in this thread.

I have merely pointed out that you can't use correlation as a proof of causation. I would have thought that everybody on /. knew that.

Re:When planning on lowering prices, best to shut (1)

Jeff DeMaagd (2015) | more than 5 years ago | (#28400267)

It's not so simple. While being concerned about power inefficiency is fine and dandy, home electronics really aren't as big of an issue in terms of inefficient "carbon" use as you'd think. If it becomes a question of whether to buy a separate Blu-Ray player or put the money towards a more efficiant car, you are better off with the car. Why? Check the engine power ratings. A 200kW engine (roughy 267HP) makes 175W look like a pittance. Your car takes a lot more power than your home electronics, and often produces that power in a less efficient manner than electric power plants do.

Re:When planning on lowering prices, best to shut (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28400783)

Since when does the PS3 use 175W? Troll.

Oh, well, if you can't beat them: At least it doesn't sound like a jet engine, have a red ring on the front, and have a useless deprecated movie playing dongle attached to it.

Re:When planning on lowering prices, best to shut (1)

daath93 (1356187) | more than 4 years ago | (#28403083)

I am sure even your lazy ass can research on google? I got it from Tomshardware.com somewhere. Find it.

seems to me you are the fanboy.

Re:When planning on lowering prices, best to shut (3, Interesting)

feepness (543479) | more than 4 years ago | (#28401979)

Really, the wattage of the device as a BluRay player is all you've got left now that the games are out for the PS3 and there is a sustainable userbase?

Re:When planning on lowering prices, best to shut (3, Insightful)

daath93 (1356187) | more than 4 years ago | (#28403155)

No, again, there is the price. I can afford it. Its just not worth it when there are equal devices out there that do a better job, are more efficient when it comes to power consumption, and has the added bonus of having more titles and online features. Playing netflix watch instantly on a 360 is a huge feature. Frankly the one or two titles that i would want to play dont justify the addition of a 3rd console beyond the wii and the 360.

Some people are just so anti-microsoft that they cant see past their bias. the PS3 is seriously overpriced, sure its more expensive to make but obviously people dont think the features are worth it or it would sell better. Dont blame the masses because they wont support the silly overpriced black box of your dreams.

maybe sony should lobby congress to spread the wealth of the playstation and force rich people to buy them for poor people. This seems to be what american economy is based on now.

Re:When planning on lowering prices, best to shut (1)

A12m0v (1315511) | more than 5 years ago | (#28400813)

Every one knows it is coming and a slimmer model too.

Re:When planning on lowering prices, best to shut (4, Interesting)

DrXym (126579) | more than 5 years ago | (#28400195)

Sony execs aren't dumb. They aren't going to announce price cuts until they happen.

Especially with a slim model on the way. Anyway its fairly likely what Sony will do since they've done it before. When the new model appears they'll dump the price on the old model, bundle the new model with some goodies and sell at a premium. Then when the old are cleared out, unbundle the new model and continue selling at the new lower price.

Re:When planning on lowering prices, best to shut (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#28402355)

I would guess it'll happen in fall. Sales for consoles in general skyrocket in the months before Christmas, so they'll most want to boost sales then.

Re:When planning on lowering prices, best to shut (4, Interesting)

madsenj37 (612413) | more than 5 years ago | (#28400317)

The wikipedia article you point to has Sony benefiting from the reverse-Osbourne effect. When they announced the end of PS2 hardware emulation in the PS3, sales of the 60 GB PS3 with PS2 Hardware soared.

Re:When planning on lowering prices, best to shut (5, Insightful)

BadAnalogyGuy (945258) | more than 5 years ago | (#28400339)

Yes. As I said, Sony execs aren't dumb. They leak info that helps them.

Osbourne effect:
company: Next generation models are going to be faster, cheaper, and better!
consumers: We should definitely wait for the next one.

Reverse Osbourne effect:
company: Next generation models are going to slower and less featureful!
consumers: Oh shit! We better get while the getting's good.

Inferior IP = Inferior Sales, lets blame someone (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28399989)

This may have more to do with their recent releases being outsold by first party titles on the platform. Infamous outselling Prototype, Killzone 2 and Resistance 2 outselling World at War. Add to that Rock Band outselling Guitar Hero and bar Modern Warfare Activision are struggling for a top selling IP.

Re:Inferior IP = Inferior Sales, lets blame someon (0, Flamebait)

Hubbell (850646) | more than 5 years ago | (#28400761)

My question is: What kind of a jackass buys an FPS game for a playstation? It's next to impossible to aim with the slapped on joysticks they've used since ps1 days, whereas the Xbox controller from day one had the two sticks offset from each other for a MUCH better handling of the controls as well as being infinitely more ergonomic than the ps controller.

unless your a lefty (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#28401675)

Think about it.

Re:Inferior IP = Inferior Sales, lets blame someon (1, Insightful)

feepness (543479) | more than 4 years ago | (#28401863)

Anyone who wants to play Resistance 2 or Killzone 2?

I've been playing FPS on both consoles and PCs for a long time and while I'll play the games that have what I want, the mouse/keyboard is miles above either.

Saying one stick is better than another for an FPS is like bragging your bigwheel is faster than a tricycle.

Re:Inferior IP = Inferior Sales, lets blame someon (1)

Hubbell (850646) | more than 4 years ago | (#28402717)

Not just for FPS, the analog sticks on the playstation style controller suck compared to the Xbox layout in every single way. I prefer the xbox controller to keyboard + mouse for any kind of game myself.

Re:Inferior IP = Inferior Sales, lets blame someon (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#28402413)

My mouse and keyboard want to have a talk with you.

Re:Inferior IP = Inferior Sales, lets blame someon (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#28403325)

In your opinion. I personally can't stand the 360 controller, never have. Have an adaptor to use a Dualshock 2 on my 360.

Re:Inferior IP = Inferior Sales, lets blame someon (1)

MemoryDragon (544441) | more than 4 years ago | (#28401753)

Oh well Activision wanted to have every game being a multi million dollar franchise which should sell a butload of copies every year, I guess they failed their way!

The PS3's problem is lack of games. (4, Interesting)

yourassOA (1546173) | more than 5 years ago | (#28399997)

Not being overpriced. The 40GB models are comparable in price to an Xbox and it is a simple matter to change the HDD . Mine is 320GB.

Re:The PS3's problem is lack of games. (1, Flamebait)

Sardak (773761) | more than 5 years ago | (#28400099)

I agree. Most of my friends and myself already own PS3s, so the console's price is a non-issue for us. We're just waiting on the games.

Some of them have given in and purchased Xboxes, but I've been standing my ground in hopes that one day the PS3 will have a library of games comparable to that of the PS2. I'm kind of annoyed that I wasn't able to play the new Star Ocean (seriously, why is it not on a Sony console like most of the others in the series?), but I'll live. I've tried out the other available systems, and was largely unimpressed. The Wii, while neat, didn't hold my interest for very long at all and I sold it shortly thereafter. I refuse to own an Xbox of any sort for various reasons. I suspect that once (if?) the PS3's game library expands a bit, sales will start going up at a much more desirable rate.

Infamous was a great start, we just need a few more exclusives to draw in the crowds. I'm generally opposed to exclusive games (one of the reasons I refuse to own an Xbox), but if that's what it takes to get developers on the bandwagon, then so be it.

P.S. Please don't hurt me Xbox owners. I would imagine that using those cinder blocks you guys call controllers for extended periods of time would beef someone up enough to do some real damage.

Re:The PS3's problem is lack of games. (1)

Kneo24 (688412) | more than 4 years ago | (#28401789)

I use one of those "cinderblocks" as my gamepad for my PC. It works great and it feels comfortable. So I'm not entirely sure where you're getting the whole "cinderblock" argument from anyway.

Re:The PS3's problem is lack of games. (2, Interesting)

stardude82 (1030976) | more than 5 years ago | (#28400209)

Agreed also true in the sense they could also bundle more games with it. For instance, I got my 40Gb with a $100 gift card to a large international retailer.

Off Metacritic.com, the same games have higher scores for the 360 and average top 20 games are 2 percent better.

Generally, me thinks (and this is no secret) the developers just hate Sony and their hardware.

Re:The PS3's problem is lack of games. (1)

yourassOA (1546173) | more than 5 years ago | (#28400231)

Sony's hardware or IBM's PPC?

Developing for Cell Processors . . . (5, Interesting)

PolygamousRanchKid (1290638) | more than 5 years ago | (#28400311)

. . . is probably a royal pain in the ass. Any /. Cell developers care to comment?

Kotick said, "It's expensive to develop for the console." Read that as time, people and money, when compared to other platforms.

I would think that Sony would be bending over backwards to support developers.

OS/2 was a better OS than Windows, but there were not enough applications for it, so folks flocked to Windows.

I'm curious to hear how the Cell development environment is: "Great, Challenging, or Run Away!"

Re:Developing for Cell Processors . . . (5, Insightful)

hattig (47930) | more than 5 years ago | (#28400811)

The majority of the cost of writing a game is in media creation, not programming. Media = textures, videos, 3D objects and animations, maps, structures, music, sound effects, etc.

The media can be reused across different platforms - typically 360, PS3 and PC. A Wii version might use scaled down versions of the same media.

On top of that, you usually develop a game on top of a game engine, so if you re-use that engine across titles, the per-platform development cost goes down even further.

The PS3 has plenty of games, many of then unique to its platform. Its sales rate is the same as the 360 across the world, and if you exclude the USA it's outselling the 360. The 360 does have a year's headstart on its side, hence its 7m extra sales. Most game developers have got the hang of the PS3's hardware to the point where the games are now no worse than the 360, with promises of more improvements to come.

If anything, this entire article says more about the standard of programmers at Activision.

However I do think a price drop on the PS3 hardware would benefit everyone. I do suspect that they're creating a slim-line version using 45nm components. This is when the sales will take off (as with the PS2 slim), especially if GT5 launches at the same time. Right now Sony must be making a profit on the hardware, given how much the price of BluRay drives has dropped.

Re:Developing for Cell Processors . . . (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#28401523)

Actually while the source media can be the same, the final media on the disc can and is different. More compressed or in a different format that is more amenable to getting the most out of the consoles hardware.

We have a lot of *fun* getting the PS3 to perform at the same speed as the 360 on the same real world scenes, mostly due to two factors1) the GPU in the PS3 is not as good as the 360s, 2) The Cell processor is a ~#&$ to get performance out of without a lot of additional work... additional work that could be used to make the game code better for better AI/Physics or whatever.

The extra dev time is rarely warrented except for big budget cross platform games (Burnout series for example), otherwise "good enough" does for cross platform with PS3 usually suffering.

Sony is still making a rather large dollar loss per unit last I heard, MS is loosing less per console, but probably having to pay out more later on for the red ring of death replacement consoles...

Thanks

Re:Developing for Cell Processors . . . (1)

hattig (47930) | more than 4 years ago | (#28402645)

Thanks for your points.

I imagine that adjusting the media for each console's differences is a lesser task than the creation - possibly to the point of being an automated script.

It is also true of course that the PS3 is a compromise, and came too early for the technology it represents (especially Cell). Then again the PS2 was quite quirky. If a company keeps the expertise in-house then the games will improve over time.

ATI really did well with the 360 graphics chip.

The loss per unit isn't really known. A vast amount of cost reductions have happened over time so far in the PS3 - BluRay maturation, process shrinks, feature removal, technology advancement. But at least it is reliable!

Re:Developing for Cell Processors . . . (1)

spire3661 (1038968) | more than 4 years ago | (#28403511)

Just because Intel can make 45nm parts doesnt mean IBM suddenly can.....

Re:Developing for Cell Processors . . . (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#28403791)

Suddenly?

a href=http://arstechnica.com/gaming/news/2008/02/ibm-shrinks-cell-to-45nm-cheaper-ps3s-will-follow.ars>They did it over a year ago!

Re:Developing for Cell Processors . . . (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#28403771)

If you want an idea of how PS3 is selling compared to the rest, you can have a look at VGChartz. It's not perfect data but pretty reliable.

PS3 is only outselling Xbox 360 in Japan and that's how it's been for quite a while.

Re:Developing for Cell Processors . . . (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#28401131)

The Cell part of development only compounds the underlying issue with developing for the PS3.

The PS3 uses the GNU toolchain, and whilst Linux zealots will tell you it cured AIDs for them the fact is it's just nowhere near as productive as the Visual Studio toolchain. When you factor in the inherent difficulty of developing with Cell against a relatively unproductive toolchain you see a big difference in overall productivity.

From what I understand Sony are switching their toolchain to something better, but it's not their yet and the difficulty of developing with Cell will still add to the fact it's just not Visual Studio.

If there's one thing Microsoft does well it's software development tools and this is one of the major reasons they're able to hold people on their platforms. Ballmer's 'Developers developers developers' is somewhat humorous but the underlying message is important - if you want your platform to matter, make sure people can develop for it.

Re:Developing for Cell Processors . . . (1)

binarylarry (1338699) | more than 4 years ago | (#28401689)

Oh you mean the lack of gui wizards? /ROFL

Re:The PS3's problem is lack of games. (4, Interesting)

macshit (157376) | more than 4 years ago | (#28401157)

Hmm, not sure I agree.

My typical procedure is to pick up a console when I come across a game I really want. I think that while the PS3's game lineup is hardly the best history's seen, it has some pretty good stuff. But every time I think "oh maybe I should just get it", the price of the console itself smacks me in the face and I end up thinking I'll just wait.

There's a vague price threshold below which I buy stuff without worrying too much about the price, and the PS3 is comfortably above that threshold. It isn't a impulse purchase, and I think that in many cases, that's the kiss of death.

Re:The PS3's problem is lack of games. (1)

MemoryDragon (544441) | more than 4 years ago | (#28401715)

Actually I could justify the price if there was a PS2 backwards compatibility but the way I see it I probably if I ever buy a console the next two years will end up with a ps2 there is a handful of excellent games I really want to play, while the PS3 lineup so far only has two of them if at all!

Re:The PS3's problem is lack of games. (0)

feepness (543479) | more than 4 years ago | (#28402083)

There are currently 457 games on this list (PS3 games) [wikipedia.org]

Another few hundred downloadable. [wikipedia.org]

Personally I have not been able to keep up for the last year or so. I've not even gotten to Resident Evil 5 yet...

Re:The PS3's problem is lack of games. (1)

LoverOfJoy (820058) | more than 4 years ago | (#28402267)

There are a lot of TBA vaporware games listed there. Still, a significant number of real and released games remaining...but the number that you quoted is not very meaningful.

Re:The PS3's problem is lack of games. (1)

sqlrob (173498) | more than 4 years ago | (#28402277)

According to ESRB, There are 811 rated games for the 360, 521 for PS3

That doesn't say anything about quality or which are multiplatform.

Re:The PS3's problem is lack of games. (1)

MBGMorden (803437) | more than 4 years ago | (#28403457)

A 40GB model is still WAY more expensive that the Xbox360 whose baseline model comes in at $199. No, that one doesn't have a hard drive, but it DOES have a memory card which is all you really need for savegames if you truly are wanting it for a gaming machine.

As much as I dislike Microsoft, for me the 360 is simply the way to go right now. Most "traditional" style games are coming out on both platforms. The 360 is (or was in my case) cheaper. Both systems are pretty capable hardware wise - though I'll say that I like the Xbox 360 controllers better (I've never been a fan of Sony controllers). I bought my 360 as one of the newer revisions that were supposed to have most of the hardware issues solved - I certainly haven't had any issues with mine.

About the only reason I'd buy a PS3 right now would be for the included Blu-ray player. At one time when they were similar in price I ALMOST bought the baseline PS3 as I thought "Hey, it's a blu-ray player with basically a free game system included.". I put off my Blu-ray purchase though and now standalone players are falling in price much, much faster than the PS3. Now rather than being a blu-ray player with a free game system it's a blu-ray player with a $200 premium for the game system added.

Re:The PS3's problem is lack of games. (1)

yourassOA (1546173) | more than 4 years ago | (#28403775)

I was comparing base PS3 to a Top of the line Xbox. The advantage to a base ps3 is the HDD can be changed up to 500GB the top of the line Xbox can't do that. $180 for a 120GB hdd compared to $55 for a 320GB hdd in my ps3.

attach rate info is wrong (3, Insightful)

YesIAmAScript (886271) | more than 5 years ago | (#28400007)

High console price doesn't lead to a low attach rate. It leads to many other problems, but it doesn't lead to a low attach rate.

I think the problem in question is that the high price keeps the console sales down which means there are fewer owners for Activision to sell copies of their games to.

Attach rate is the number of games sold per console sold, not total number of games sold for a particular platform.

Re:attach rate info is wrong (1)

Dahamma (304068) | more than 5 years ago | (#28400043)

Exactly. I don't understand why a publisher is babbling (incorrectly) about attach rates. Make a really good game for a console - the console owners will buy it. If there just aren't very many of those customers, sure, that's a valid complaint and a reason not to support the console. But the only one who should be worried about the sales PER CONSOLE is Sony (who makes a licensing fee from every game sold...)

Re:attach rate info is wrong (1)

daath93 (1356187) | more than 5 years ago | (#28400119)

Activision's point seems to be that with a low console turnout there will be a smaller volume of people demanding Activision games to those consoles vs more successful consoles, which makes it difficult for the manufacturer to justify the cost to retool the entire game to run on the silly PS3 architecture.

Re:attach rate info is wrong (0)

DrXym (126579) | more than 5 years ago | (#28400503)

The PS3 currently has the highest attach rate of all next gen consoles, so that's definitely not it's problem. It absolutely does need to be cheaper though. I think a $299 Slim model would sell shitloads.

Re:attach rate info is wrong (4, Interesting)

Xest (935314) | more than 4 years ago | (#28401309)

Unfortunately reality seems to disagree with you.

http://kotaku.com/5222086/ps3-attach-rate-overtakes-wii-attach-rate [kotaku.com]

From a year ago:

http://playstation.joystiq.com/2008/04/25/npd-releases-home-console-attach-rate-ratios-ps3-not-so-hot/ [joystiq.com]

There has not been any period at all where the PS3 has had a higher attach rate than the 360 and it's only just very recently managed to overtake the Wii.

The closest I could find to your claims was this:

http://www.gamasutra.com/php-bin/news_index.php?story=23186 [gamasutra.com]

But it really doesn't make any sense, attach rate is number of games purchased per console, not number of units of certain cherry picked titles sold per console. I suppose if you're completely unobjective and a total Sony fanboy you might take away from that in your mind that Sony has a higher attach rate, but if you step back and be objective and look at the first link you'll notice that regardless of what Sony says and how they twist a few figures the cold hard truth is that they do have a lower attach rate even when adjusted for console lifetime on the market. Nintendo could play a similar game to Sony taking games that were really built for the Wii but ported to other consoles anyway and suggest they have a higher attach rate, but still, the reality is that they don't. Effectively what Sony is abusing is the fact they have a much lower selection of titles on their system, so the good titles get a higher ratio bought for their console than for the other consoles, but this makes no sense because attach rates aren't about specific individual titles. It also ignores the fact their system has sold much fewer of the titles they've cherry picked overall too which should be the real measure of per-game success on each platform. If they have sold less of a specific title because they have a smaller install base that doesn't mean anything in terms of how well they're doing, in fact, it only exagerates the problem of having a smaller install base. If you can make up for that smaller install base with greater profits from game sales (i.e. real attach rates) then you may be able to live with that, but the problem is Sony is struggling in terms of both install base AND attach rates. It looks like they're improving things on the attach rates front, but they're certainly nowhere near Microsoft and they're certainly even further from having a big enough lead on attach rates against Microsoft that they can make up the profit differences from a lower install base.

At the end of the day all a publisher like activision sees is the amount of profit gained per console they publish for, and the fact is, Sony's mangled statistics don't change that one bit, it's simply an attempt at improving PR.

Really, if you have any sources that show the PS3 really does have a higher attach rate than the other two consoles rather than a bunch of cherry picked mangled stats that actually have nothing to do with attach rate because attach rates are game neutral I'd love to see it, but I've yet to see anything that shows this and certainly nothing from independent and product neutral sources like NPD.

I don't expect you to change your mind and accept that Sony doesn't have the highest attach rate, because the fact you came out with that unsourced and clearly untrue comment in the first means you're probably not open to the idea that the PS3 isn't doing as well as it should be but it seems silly to leave such an incorrect comment uncorrected. Still, if you can somehow prove your comment then I'll step back and accept I stand corrected but mangled statistics that are effectively meaningless from the marketing department of the company you're referring to don't really count for obvious reasons, it needs to be objective 3rd party stats that really tell us something about profit from games sold per console.

Re:attach rate info is wrong (0)

feepness (543479) | more than 4 years ago | (#28401819)

Wow dude, someone made a mistake and you're writing your dissertation on it?

Re:attach rate info is wrong (1)

ClosedSource (238333) | more than 4 years ago | (#28402243)

Yeah. Who is that guy, some kind of nerd?

Attach rate (1)

janwedekind (778872) | more than 5 years ago | (#28400727)

"Attach rate" should sound quite scornful to the customers. It is remarkable that these guys even have a technical term for the rate with which vendor lock-in progresses.

Re:attach rate info is wrong (2, Interesting)

Xest (935314) | more than 4 years ago | (#28401361)

To provide some evidence for your claim-

When the other consoles were released the 360 was arguably the most expensive - it was outright more expensive than the Wii, and when you compared like for like it was more expensive than the PS3.

Yet it had a much higher attach rate, by far the highest of the three.

Since then it's dropped to offer the cheapest system out the lot yet still has the highest attach rate (http://kotaku.com/5222086/ps3-attach-rate-overtakes-wii-attach-rate).

That suggests that you're right, console price has nothing whatsoever to do with attach rate.

What % of people will buy with lower prices? (4, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28400023)

As someone who's been around since the Atari 2600/Intellivision/ColecoVision days, this is the first generation of consoles that I've skipped buying. And as a prior owner of a 3DO, that says a lot. Why? Two reasons.

1) This generation of consoles feels like too small of an improvement over the last to justify the purchase.

2) With the enjoyment of seeing a generational leap in graphics being non-existent, I feel like, for the first time, I can turn to any one of the billion casual gameplay sites out there for a quick 10-minute to an hour gaming fix at no cost.

Sure, I still play an Oblivion, a Half-Life, or a Fallout once in a while, but for the most part I like getting a quick fix and moving on to something new the next day, week, or month. Casual gameplay sites (for now, anyway) let me do this extremely cheaply.

I'd probably look into getting one of this generation's consoles for $100. Money isn't the issue, the enjoyment:money ratio is.

Re:What % of people will buy with lower prices? (3, Interesting)

am 2k (217885) | more than 5 years ago | (#28400063)

Uh, if you just want casual games, gaming consoles aren't for you anyways.

Maybe you're no longer interested in nowadays' consoles because you have changed since the old days?

Re:What % of people will buy with lower prices? (3, Insightful)

Derek Loev (1050412) | more than 5 years ago | (#28400103)

Uh, if you just want casual games, gaming consoles aren't for you anyways.

This doesn't make sense to me. Gaming consoles *are* for the casual gamer. I always thought PCs were for the hardcore gamers.

Re:What % of people will buy with lower prices? (1)

am 2k (217885) | more than 5 years ago | (#28400139)

I think you missed a few years of game business. Currently, PC gaming is pretty much dead except for specific genres like RTS and MMORPGs, and nearly all new games are made for the consoles.

Re:What % of people will buy with lower prices? (1)

MemoryDragon (544441) | more than 4 years ago | (#28401741)

I think you missed a few years of game business. Currently, PC gaming is pretty much dead except for specific genres like RTS and MMORPGs, and nearly all new games are made for the consoles.

Well most of the stuff is ported since the PC still is about 1/3rd of the revenue market, the funny thing is thanks to the consoles the hardware upgrade cycle has slowed down so much that pc gaming nowadays is cheaper than the average console if you count in the games as well which on the average are 30% cheaper!

Re:What % of people will buy with lower prices? (4, Insightful)

sznupi (719324) | more than 5 years ago | (#28400401)

That's a misconception originally promoted by some to feel more elitist, I guess, and nowadays mostly to point fingers at consoles and yell "they dumb down our games!"

There are also "hardcore" (as you put it...whatever that means) games for consoles. And there was more of them in the past. As is the case for the PC.

Simply an effect of marginalizing early and "mid" adopters, now that both types of platforms have became much more mainstream.

Also, thank MS for bringing them so close together that it's "obvious" for publishers to aim games for both. Which means: the need to be compromise on both platforms, cutting out things that work great on one, but are not really doable on the other. "Jack of all trades..." and all that...

Re:What % of people will buy with lower prices? (1)

Jeff DeMaagd (2015) | more than 5 years ago | (#28400589)

Still, I think that Solitaire is probably the most played game on the PC.

Re:What % of people will buy with lower prices? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28400115)

Besides the games listed in the OP, I enjoyed God of War, Shadow of the Colossus, Grand Theft Auto, etc. last generation and I'm pretty sure I can find games similar to that in this generation. What I don't think I'll find is a vast improvement gameplay-wise and not enough of a graphical improvement to have that initial "wow" factor upon seeing a next-gen console's graphics to make it worth throwing down hundreds for.

Re:What % of people will buy with lower prices? (1)

Jeff DeMaagd (2015) | more than 4 years ago | (#28401903)

Really, it's harder to enjoy the older game systems because they are all SD.

Distant objects that might be important to game play that were splotches in the past have a defined shape. Except for the Wii. Still SD.

Re:What % of people will buy with lower prices? (1)

sqlrob (173498) | more than 4 years ago | (#28402367)

As someone who switches between generations of hardware constantly, I call shenanigans.

A good game is a good game.

Lots of products are overly expensive.. (3, Insightful)

mysidia (191772) | more than 5 years ago | (#28400137)

  • Windows OS, Office, MSSQL, etc, the windows SW
  • iPhone
  • Acrobat, Flash, Photoshawp
  • Inkjet printer cartridges

Come to think of it, the iPhone is almost as expensive as the PS3 (if not more so).

Pass or fail is more than about price.

Re:Lots of products are overly expensive.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28400179)

The iPhone starts at $99. The cheapest current-gen console, the Wii, chimes in at $249, though you might find a sale/ebay/whatever for less. And you can make calls with an iPhone.

Re:Lots of products are overly expensive.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#28401301)

When you pay your $249 to Nintendo, you are under no obligation to ever send them any more money. That $99 iPhone only costs you 8% less than a $400 iphone...

Re:Lots of products are overly expensive.. (2, Interesting)

ink (4325) | more than 4 years ago | (#28401821)

Seriously? You're going to swallow the $99 argument? Try taking a look at the TCO of the iPhone [jacobpierce.com] . The FCC is even looking into [informationweek.com] this anti-competitive bundling crap. IPhone manufacturing costs put it just below $200 [cnet.com] , and yet AT&T will only sell you one for $600 w/o a contract.

What this has to do with the PS3 is left as an exercise to the reader.

Re:Lots of products are overly expensive.. (1)

sqlrob (173498) | more than 4 years ago | (#28402437)

No. The cheapest current-gen console is $199, the 360.

Activision BLIZZARD can afford to be dicks. (5, Interesting)

Sarusa (104047) | more than 5 years ago | (#28400149)

Why does everyone just say 'Activision'? Uneasy about dragging your beloved WoW into this? It's Activision Blizzard, and that 'Blizzard' along with Call of Duty and Guitar Hero are why Kotick can afford to be the huge raging prick he is.

He's got a long history of being a total @#$hole to squeeze profits, and it's worked. He's the reason you're going to be paying for Starcraft II three times instead of one, no matter what lame excuses they feed you. He's got no compunctions about selling you multi-hundred dollar overpriced plastic controller sets to go with his games while he complains about PS3 prices. His unbridled douchebaggery works quite well, at least in the short run, and it might work in the long run because Blizzard can get away with anything.

Now of course he knows that Activision Blizzard paid Sony $500 million dollars last year in per-game royalties and other crap, and I'm sure he's looking to shave some of that. That's what this is really about. And Sony is vulnerable - just the suggestion that a major publisher could drop the PS3, even if they wouldn't, is hugely damaging when they're in third place in the largest markets. I'm sure fanbois will sneer that they don't need Activision, but someone's sure buying their stuff on PS3.

I'm not giving them any money because of the Brutal Legend fiasco (part of Kotick's deliberate cockmongering), but I realize that's sort of quixotic. In general you people (forgive my broad brush) will continue to bend over and spread wide for Call of Duty and WoW and Starcraft and Diablo III.

Mod parent up. (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28400461)

Kotick's basically the biggest troll in the industry.

Re:Activision BLIZZARD can afford to be dicks. (1)

Zeussy (868062) | more than 5 years ago | (#28400479)

Personally I prefer to call them blactivision

REMOVE LOUIS FROM L4D (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28400163)

To: Valve
I propose that we remove Louis from L4D, nobody can relate to him because he is a nigger.

I'm sure people that play left 4 dead will get on their computers and join a lobby for some No Mercy campaign fun, only to find that all the infected are taken. this is undeniably the case most of the time.

You decide "oh well, at least you can play as bill, hes a badass Vietnam veteran and probably raped some azn girl while he was setting villages on fire" But, you are disappointed as somebody already joined and took him first... hes always taken first god damnit.

well, then there is the next best choice, Zoey. The lovable teenage slut has always provoked some kind of perverted thought in L4D gamers and when they go to patch her up with first aid they cream themselves at getting this close to a woman, virtual or not. So with all the extra help around, playing as Zoey should be a breeze, right? Well, some fucker already took that second... now the sudden realization dawns on you, you have two choices left.

One is the faggot biker Francis, that only acts like hes interested in Zoey as to throw of the trail that he secretly would fuck Bill so hard in the ass given the chance. The other choice, though, is worse. it's a fucking nigger.

I mean sure, he isn't hindered in any way, well... not in physical gameplay at least. But you soon will realize after playing a couple rounds being a nigger, every time you get pounced, smoked, or somebody accidentally clips him with a bullet, he has to open his fat lips to shout louder then any of the other survivors and speaks in a vernacular that just makes me sick to hear it.

If we were to get rid of Louis, teamkilling "accidents" will be cut down by 50%, and the survivor morale will increase dramatically, no longer burdened by some filthy, loud, beast.

But, I am only one person, I will need the help of all you fellow people that enjoy L4D, but their experience is hindered by the sight of this dirty chicken eating coon. Shall We receive enough signatures, Valve will soon know the errors of their ways and create an alternative to being such a disgraceful character.

Sincerely,

The Undersigned

Comment doesn't make much sense (2, Interesting)

DrXym (126579) | more than 5 years ago | (#28400235)

Activision like most huge companies employes teams to write middleware libraries and tools which probably means a substantial portion of title specific code is platform neutral. Games hit the middleware, not the hardware except in some timing critical places. On top of that, the PS3 would share virtually 100% of the graphical and audio assets with its PC and 360 counterparts. The upshot is developing for 360/PC/PS3 is not vastly more expensive than developing for 360/PC. Compare to the Wii where virtually all of the game code and assets would be different.

Therefore I don't accept the motivations for this statement. More likely Sony and Activision are in a pissing match over something like certification fees, PSN fees, technical requirements, 3rd party accessories or similar and this is Activision making their power play. Any way, a price cut is bound to happen sooner than later. Everyone knows its needed, including Sony, especially if the Slim is inbound as it is.

Who needs the price cut? (3, Insightful)

SharpFang (651121) | more than 5 years ago | (#28400307)

Nintendo does. In the eastern european countries.

I've been to an electronics store recently, and just out of curiosity, checked the prices. Back when Wii was announced at $200, I had hoped to buy one. Now I can say FUCK YOU NINTENDO.

PS3: 1450PLN = 445USD
XBOX360: 850PLN = 260USD
WII: 1250PLN = 384USD

That's about half of an average salary too. Bastards really need to pull heads out of their asses and cut the crap with "double the price for Europe" politics.

Re:Who needs the price cut? (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28400343)

That's about half of an average salary too.

You make $700/hour? Where do I sign up?

(Hint: saying "half of an average salary" means nothing if you don't specify the time interval. And any nonzero price is half of any nonzero salary given the appropriate interval.)

Re:Who needs the price cut? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28400491)

Europeans generally get paid once a month.
The average wage in Poland is around 1383 USD per month.

Re:Who needs the price cut? (3, Interesting)

mindstormpt (728974) | more than 5 years ago | (#28400519)

You people in the US tend to use hourly, weekly, monthly, yearly wages. Over here, when we refer to salaries, it's pretty much implicit that we're talking about monthly salaries, as it's very rare to use any other timeframe (except maybe for your hourly example, but, given the context, that's obvious anyway). I don't think I ever had the need to attach the interval when refering to salaries.

Re:Who needs the price cut? (1)

sznupi (719324) | more than 5 years ago | (#28400499)

Uhmmm...since you live _here_ you surely must know that it is, in large part, thanks to local distributors, not Nintendo/Apple/etc. (companies which, in reality, don't have a presence here; they rely on some 3rd party that takes silly cut for itself)

Re:Who needs the price cut? (1)

SharpFang (651121) | more than 4 years ago | (#28401555)

Somehow Microsoft and Sony get around that though - it's not like Nintendo is unfairly disadvantaged comparing to others - they all have to deal with the same market conditions, but Nintendo deals with them extremely poorly.

Re:Who needs the price cut? (1)

sznupi (719324) | more than 4 years ago | (#28403393)

Somehow Nintendo, in this generation of consoles, is the only one doing things in a profitable way.

That could also mean it doesn't need small bragging rights it would get from also trying to dominate totally immature markets.

And don't pretend I don't know what I'm talking about, as an owner of on of very few non-chipmodded PS1s here. X360 dominates PL market because it easy to pirate.

Re:Who needs the price cut? (1)

MemoryDragon (544441) | more than 4 years ago | (#28401771)

Actually it is Nintendo of Europe who says how much an item has to cost!
Same goes for Sony Europe etc... and the 1:1 Dollar Euro price hiking is quite common, this gives companies an additional 10-20% revenue (if you count out the VAT which is quite high in Europe)

Re:Who needs the price cut? (1)

sznupi (719324) | more than 4 years ago | (#28403415)

Sony has a direct presence in Poland - Sony Poland. They deal with a lot of consumer products, they might just as well take PS3 on the ride.

Microsoft has a direct presence in Poland - Microsoft Poland. They deal with a lot of consumer products, they might just as well take X360 on the ride.

Nintendo presence in Poland relies on some local company name of which I even don't remember. It's not worth it to start direct operations in so immature market.

Re:Who needs the price cut? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28400505)

Globally... Europe is a shitty market to sell many products in.

If i were to sell a software product i'd mark it up for european markets as well.

They have heavy consumer protection laws, and like to complain alot. Much harder to screw people over there in the 'usual' ways. So you gotta get your money up front somehow to cover the costs and headaches of doing business there at all.

Disagree? Flamebait? Sure sure. whatever. It's still true.

Re:Who needs the price cut? (1)

Rogerborg (306625) | more than 5 years ago | (#28400567)

Bastards really need to pull heads out of their asses and cut the crap with "double the price for Europe" politics.

You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.

If the units are moving off the shelves, then they don't "need" to do anything. Here's the pictorial explanation [penny-arcade.com] .

Re:Who needs the price cut? (1)

enrevanche (953125) | more than 5 years ago | (#28400815)

This is more expensive than in the US, but not as much as you think.

Polish VAT is 22%, so 384USD after VAT is removed would be 384 * 0.78 = 299.

In the US, the price is actually about 249 for the console alone. (mail order prices)

Also after doing a search (see http://www.nokaut.pl/konsole/konsola-nintendo-wii.html [nokaut.pl] ), the typical price seems to about 1080, i.e. 1080 * 0.307579 = 332 and 332 *0.78 = 259

So there is really not much difference.

Note, in the US, we pay sales tax on top of the purchase price, but it is usually less than 10%. You can usually avoid it by ordering over the internet from another (US) state.

It is unfortunate that the exchange rates substantially undervalue labor in Eastern Europe.

Re:Who needs the price cut? (1)

SharpFang (651121) | more than 4 years ago | (#28401757)

...well, how does that compare to XBox 360?

Tempting (0, Flamebait)

zmollusc (763634) | more than 5 years ago | (#28400375)

Lowering the price of the PS3? Hmmm... It is an impressive spec, but I don't think I shall buy one because FUCK SONY!

Re:Tempting (1)

ndavis (1499237) | more than 5 years ago | (#28400909)

Lowering the price of the PS3? Hmmm... It is an impressive spec, but I don't think I shall buy one because FUCK SONY!

I thought the same thing until I realized I wanted a Blu-ray player and that all of the players cost near the same amount as a PS3 but they did not have nearly the amount of features. I ended up with the PS3 but I still do not own a single game for it I just rent them every once in a while.

This is the real thing the game companies need to worry about I did not buy the system to play games I bought it to play movies with the games as a nice addition. I don't know how many people did this which lowers the attachment rate more so then the price.

Politics wouldn't have anything to do with it,? (-1, Troll)

Nefarious Wheel (628136) | more than 5 years ago | (#28400435)

Kotick said, "The PlayStation 3 is losing a bit of momentum...

Their drop in sales couldn't at all be related to Sony's being identified with the RIAA would it? I've heard young children say "I don't want a Sony because they're bad people". When their behaviour makes it to a childhood meme, you know their brand is in trouble.

Re:Politics wouldn't have anything to do with it,? (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28400553)

Bzzt. Try again.

Nobody outside /. cares about the fact that Sony is part of the MPAA and RIAA.

Sales are down because just about everyone that's willing to buy one at $399 has already done so. Sony is just playing chicken with the fence-sitters, because they know they can get more money if they wait it out.

Personally I plan to buy one the minute it goes under $350, and I don't care how long it takes. Longer just means more good+cheap games in the greatest hits collection.

backwards compatibility (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#28401667)

Forget price cuts. Without backwards compatibility, I and most PS fans have zero reason to buy a PS3. I can say, their blatant disregard for their established customer base destroys all confidence that they can satisfy me as a customer.

I think this is a power play... (0)

feepness (543479) | more than 4 years ago | (#28401795)

Activision is just playing the game to publicly seek concessions from Sony. With 25M PS3s and 50M PSPs they would be stupid to ignore that market and they know it.

While I think a price cut is needed as well, if you read the article, what Activision is really upset by is the $500M in royalties they paid.
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