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Video Games Can’t Fail or there are Dire Consequences! But… Why are they allowed to?

             So if I’m hearing this right, then games like Crew 2, Mass Effect Andromeda, ONRUSH, and even the latest Far Cry 5.  We see games that came out that weren’t really done and needed far more time to cook.  Also, these games have been cursed with bad writing and bad voice acting.  Writing and voice acting are both things that can be controlled outside of technology, etc….  But often, writing and voice acting are the first causalities of publishers who want to get their game a little cheaper.  Also, companies like Square Enix who tend to send their PC ports out to die are also guilty of trying to get ports done on the cheap at port houses in countries where things are little cheaper.  So what’s going on here?  This statement is probably somewhat true, but what I really believe is that most companies are trying to make the biggest game they can with the least amount of money they can get away with.  Another words, a game that should cost $200 million or more to make really only gets $100 million.  That way, there is less risk and the publisher can still reap large rewards if the game does do well.

     Also, microtransactions help with this.  After all, even if the game doesn’t do very well; the game can make up some of the money by cashing in with microtransactions.  All a game really needs are a few whales, especially in the international market to make up a big portion of the original investment.

       Finally, most games cost $60 for the base game and then you get your season pass, deluxe edition, etc…  After all is said and done the more expensive editions can cost anywhere between $70 and $120 which allows the publisher; to, in advance of any work being done;  get more money from the game’s release.  If you think games still cost $60, you are very mistaken.  Especially with a game like Destiny, for instance where it appears that large portions of the base game were cut up and put into the season pass to be sold later or at launch depending.  But Destiny is not the only culprit.  Many games have season passes that look suspiciously like side content for the base game or maybe even cut content that could not be fit into the base game due to time constraints.  More and more it seems that developers are actually not working on the season pass content after the game comes out but rather during the development and therefore they know exactly what this content consists of so it can be teased with the advertising of the season pass as much as 3-6 months before the content is ACTUALLY available to consumers.  This is another effect of the cost adverse publisher.

       As much as these practices may be just part of business they are no less cringe worthy for consumers.  But don’t cry in your beer for publishers and developers.  If there was no market for games and no profit to be made.  They would get out of it.  All publishers and developers at the end of the day are in this to make money.  It’s a business not art or a work of charity.  But as a consumer realize that your behavior has consequences and your purchases speak much louder than your words.

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