The shift to $70 games for the “next-gen” consoles has been slow but steady, and another major publisher could soon be making the jump. Sega said in its latest earnings report that it’s currently reviewing its games to see where price increases make sense, moving in the direction of 2K Games, Square Enix, and other big companies that have already adopted $70 as the new standard price point for blockbuster video games.
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“In the global marketplace, AAA game titles for console have been sold at $59.99 for many years, but titles sold at $69.99 have appeared in the last year,” Sega said in a newly translated transcript of the company’s April 28 earnings call (via VGC). “We would like to review the prices of titles that we believe are commensurate with price increases, while also keeping an eye on market conditions.”
Sega’s most recent blockbuster, a remake of the Yakuza spin-off Like a Dragon: Ishin!, was cross-gen and priced at $60. So was last year’s ambitious Sonic Frontiers, which came to every platform including the Nintendo Switch. It now sounds like the next Yakuza and Sonic games could be the first to tick up to $70. Like a Dragon 8 (as the Yakuza series is known in Japan) is slated to arrive sometime in 2024.
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After over a decade of prices for high-end games stagnating at $60, Take-Two was the first to race to make NBA 2K21 $70 when it came to the PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X/S. Other companies like Activision, Sony, Square Enix, and Ubisoft followed suit. Redfall was Microsoft’s first $70 game, while The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom was Nintendo’s, though the Mario maker says some of its games will remain at $60 for now.
Interestingly, the price changes have mostly only been on consoles. With the exception of Forspoken, PC versions of recent blockbusters like the Dead Space remake and The Callisto Protocol remained $10 cheaper than their counterparts on PS5 and Xbox Series X/S. AAA game budgets are out of control, though, so it’s unlikely to stay that way for long.