I was just reading on Anandtech about how Best Buy is looking into
selling used video games.  The game developers are upset about it
because they lose money on the deal.  I’m kind of torn on
this.  Being a future game developer myself, I like to see the
game industry make some money.  But I also like being able to
afford the latest games without taking out a loan first.  Let’s
break this down:

The average frontline game costs a boatload of money.  According
to Gamespot, it is estimated that developing a feature-rich game for
the Xbox 360 will cost over $8,000,000.  Let’s say that this game
costs $60 to buy in the store.  Assuming that stores markup the
games about 20% (which is probably a low estimate), that means the game
publisher gets $48 for each copy.  The publisher takes their share
out, so the developer probably gets around $40 for each copy of the
game sold (again, this is probably much higher than it really
is).  To amortize the cost of making the game, it needs to sell
200,000 copies of the game.  To make enough profit to invest into
another game, they need to sell 200,000 more copies.  For some
games (Halo 2, e.g.) this isn’t a problem – it had sold over 5,000,000
copies by last December.  Most games however don’t even come close
to that number.  Ninja Gaiden sold only 6,000 in in the 4 months
after its release.  That means it only needs 194,000 more to go to
break even. 

To have Best Buy sell used games means that Best Buy makes 100% profit;
none of the money goes to the publisher or developer.  Therefore
having a huge chain like Best Buy sell used games is a horrible
idea.  It will kill the gaming industry as only companies with
enough capital to invest in a top-of-the-line game will continue to
make games.  The smaller companies will be bought out or be forced
to disband.

Join me in refusing to buy used games.  It may save $10 or $15 but
it takes $40 away from the people who actually made the game.

Categories: Uncategorized
  1. September 30, 2005 at 11:14 PM

    Actually, from some articles I’ve read, it looks like a game developer with a publisher contract gets a maximum of 25% from each copy.  That means they’d have to sell 2/3 of a million copies, which is insane.  Although I don’t think it’s possible to completely destroy the smaller companies, because they can target areas that big companies can’t afford to invest in. 
    That’s where we come in: m/m/m/

  2. October 2, 2005 at 3:25 PM

    i want some tequitos

  3. October 2, 2005 at 4:59 PM

    Tequitos…yes….and that is?

  4. October 3, 2005 at 3:47 PM

    i like taquitos

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