I find it pathetic that price has become the scapegoat of failure in the gaming industry. I’m positive that any executives, developers, or anyone making a statement about price being an issue is being deceptive; I find it impossible to believe they’re all that stupid. Anyone with an ounce of training in marketing, economics, business management, or even common sense, knows the principles of delivering value.
If your game sucks and isn’t worth $15 a month, that’s not a price issue! That’s a quality issue! Peter Moore says that price was always the issue, and people stopped playing SWTOR because they felt locked in at $15 a month. Wrong, sir! Wrong! People stopped playing your game because it wasn’t worth $15 a month, not because they didn’t want to spend that money. Those same people would happily pay that, or more, for a game worth the money.
This argument that price is to blame is like saying there is never an excuse for a poor quality product. But Peter Moore and other people spinning the issue of price don’t want you to look at their product. They want you to look at their competition still charging a price tag, get you to believe the market is changing, or see anything but the true reason why their game failed. Not all of us are falling for your attempts at misdirection, you clever little magicians.
What happens when every game is free and you can no longer blame price? There’s a reason why competing on price is a failed strategy.
Stop selling us on free to play and start selling us on your product. Go all the way back to your first sales class where they taught you that people buy benefits. They don’t buy advantages, features, or in this case excuses. What’s your point of difference? Where is your game’s value? Blizzard still charges $15 a month for WoW because they are not competing on price. $60 boxes still release every Tuesday, and some sell multiple millions. Be unique, develop a reputation, improve, or find some way to differentiate. There’s a reason why people line up every year to buy the next overpriced Apple product.
Ten years ago, when my money was worth far more, I paid a monthly fee. Since then I have never once questioned paying a monthly fee for a product worth that money. The only time I ever question paying $15 is when a game is no longer delivering a value worth that money. Give people a reason to spend their money, and they’ll happily spend it.