• Announcements

    • khawk

      Download the Game Design and Indie Game Marketing Freebook   07/19/17

      GameDev.net and CRC Press have teamed up to bring a free ebook of content curated from top titles published by CRC Press. The freebook, Practices of Game Design & Indie Game Marketing, includes chapters from The Art of Game Design: A Book of Lenses, A Practical Guide to Indie Game Marketing, and An Architectural Approach to Level Design. The GameDev.net FreeBook is relevant to game designers, developers, and those interested in learning more about the challenges in game development. We know game development can be a tough discipline and business, so we picked several chapters from CRC Press titles that we thought would be of interest to you, the GameDev.net audience, in your journey to design, develop, and market your next game. The free ebook is available through CRC Press by clicking here. The Curated Books The Art of Game Design: A Book of Lenses, Second Edition, by Jesse Schell Presents 100+ sets of questions, or different lenses, for viewing a game’s design, encompassing diverse fields such as psychology, architecture, music, film, software engineering, theme park design, mathematics, anthropology, and more. Written by one of the world's top game designers, this book describes the deepest and most fundamental principles of game design, demonstrating how tactics used in board, card, and athletic games also work in video games. It provides practical instruction on creating world-class games that will be played again and again. View it here. A Practical Guide to Indie Game Marketing, by Joel Dreskin Marketing is an essential but too frequently overlooked or minimized component of the release plan for indie games. A Practical Guide to Indie Game Marketing provides you with the tools needed to build visibility and sell your indie games. With special focus on those developers with small budgets and limited staff and resources, this book is packed with tangible recommendations and techniques that you can put to use immediately. As a seasoned professional of the indie game arena, author Joel Dreskin gives you insight into practical, real-world experiences of marketing numerous successful games and also provides stories of the failures. View it here. An Architectural Approach to Level Design This is one of the first books to integrate architectural and spatial design theory with the field of level design. The book presents architectural techniques and theories for level designers to use in their own work. It connects architecture and level design in different ways that address the practical elements of how designers construct space and the experiential elements of how and why humans interact with this space. Throughout the text, readers learn skills for spatial layout, evoking emotion through gamespaces, and creating better levels through architectural theory. View it here. Learn more and download the ebook by clicking here. Did you know? GameDev.net and CRC Press also recently teamed up to bring GDNet+ Members up to a 20% discount on all CRC Press books. Learn more about this and other benefits here.
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0
ManaStone

Video Game Price History

40 posts in this topic

I very rarely buy video games. The last game I bought was Sacrifice for the PC in 2000. The last console I had was N64 and I never really bought any games for it. When I was a kid, I usually just got games for my birthday or Christmas and rented them. The only games I remember actually buying were ones for my Game Boy and Game Gear which were around $30.00. Out of curiosity, does anyone know how much Atari, NES, SNES, and C64 games cost when they were new, old, or in the middle of their life cycle? Furthermore, does anyone know how much it would have cost to manufacture and package game cartridges and how much the retail mark up was/is?
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Really...Game Boy Games were $30? I didn't know that, since I didn't have the funds to get a game boy at the time. All I know is that PS1 games cost around $15-25, and Dreamcast games cost about $15-$30. Those were the days, honestly.
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote:
Original post by Halifax2
Really...Game Boy Games were $30? I didn't know that, since I didn't have the funds to get a game boy at the time. All I know is that PS1 games cost around $15-25, and Dreamcast games cost about $15-$30. Those were the days, honestly.
Nintendo DS games are only about 30-40 now so the Gameboy price is not that weird.
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
games like MGS and Gran Turismo costed todays prices. N64 games were rather expensive >£50. I had an Atari ST, i get the feeling they were cheaper but I cant remember.

interestingly even without the net piracy was still rampant. 90% of my games on atari were pirated, copies of copies of copies. dont copy that floppy! I was too young to understand what piracy was.
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote:
Original post by RivieraKid
interestingly even without the net piracy was still rampant. 90% of my games on atari were pirated, copies of copies of copies. dont copy that floppy! I was too young to understand what piracy was.


Piracy is not what dictates the rise in game prices, though. Rising development costs have a lot more to do with it.
1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
we paid $59 bucks for Super Mario Brothers 3 when it first came out. As I undertand, NES games were generally $50 new, unless they were terrible, in which case they dropped to $30.
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote:
Original post by Halifax2
Really...Game Boy Games were $30? I didn't know that, since I didn't have the funds to get a game boy at the time. All I know is that PS1 games cost around $15-25, and Dreamcast games cost about $15-$30. Those were the days, honestly.


Typical PS1 and Dreamcast games were never that cheap brand new. They were priced at $49.99, with the occasional, less popular, games at $39.99. NES games were around $30-$40 new and SNES games were around $50 or more. I remember when I saw Chrono Trigger at Target or Best Buy, and it was $80! N64 games were also typically in the $60-$80 range as well, depending on the game.

The only things cheaper back in the day were the systems and their accessories. Some people bitch about the price of games today when they really shouldn't. They're cheap compared to the past. Adjusted for inflation, games were much more expensive 10 to 20 years ago than they are today. Can you imagine spending the equivalent of $80+ on an NES game?


Edit - Adjusted my NES/SNES numbers a bit.

[Edited by - Mastadon on November 25, 2008 7:07:31 PM]
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
People complain a lot about games getting "more and more" expensive, but if you consider inflation, the cost of games has really gone down.

Check out an old Sears catalog from 1988 here. They are selling Legend of Zelda for $37.99. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics that is equivalent to $69.55 today.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I still had some receipts from when I was younger, here's some highlights:
Ice Hockey - $60
(most games were this price)
Super Mario RPG - $80
(it's also how much F-Zero, Donkey Kong Country, and Separation Anxiety cost, Earthbound however cost $150)
Final Fantasy 7 - $30 (god I loved the PS1 era)
Prince of Persia: Sands of Time - $60

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote:
Original post by eedok
I still had some receipts from when I was younger, here's some highlights:
Ice Hockey - $60
(most games were this price)
Super Mario RPG - $80
(it's also how much F-Zero, Donkey Kong Country, and Separation Anxiety cost, Earthbound however cost $150)
Final Fantasy 7 - $30 (god I loved the PS1 era)
Prince of Persia: Sands of Time - $60


Did you buy FF7 new? If so, it must have cost a good amount just to manufacture the cartridge.
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote:
Original post by zer0wolf
FF7 was the first disc based Final Fantasy; it wasn't on a cart.


I know. I meant if a first class game like Final Fantasy 7 is so much cheaper than the cartridge games, then the cartridge games must be significantly more expensive to make.
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
yea it was shocking to see it especially when the N64 games around it were $80, the PS1 blowing away the N64 came as no surprise just based on that
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
As other people have stated, prices have dropped significantly. Even computer games in the early 1980's had prices ranging from $20-$40. If you adjust that for inflation, you're talking $40-$80 today.

Here is an article talking about piracy from 1984, so obviously it's not a new issue.

An advertisement for Pro Golf on the C64. Price: $35 in May 1984.

I could go on, but you should get a general idea. And unlike console games, these are on floppy discs, so they didn't have license fees, cartridge fees, etc.

Then you have expensive console games such as Phantasy Star 4, Chrono Trigger, etc.

Some more prices can be found in the revies of Apple Games.

http://www.atarimagazines.com/cva/v1n2/apple2games.php
http://www.atarimagazines.com/cva/v1n2/ataripcgames.php
http://www.atarimagazines.com/cva/v1n2/colorcomputergames.php

Prices varied, but overall, todays games are much cheaper.
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote:
Original post by Mastadon
Quote:
Original post by Halifax2
Really...Game Boy Games were $30? I didn't know that, since I didn't have the funds to get a game boy at the time. All I know is that PS1 games cost around $15-25, and Dreamcast games cost about $15-$30. Those were the days, honestly.


Typical PS1 and Dreamcast games were never that cheap brand new. They were priced at $49.99, with the occasional, less popular, games at $39.99. NES games were around $30-$40 new and SNES games were around $50 or more. I remember when I saw Chrono Trigger at Target or Best Buy, and it was $80! N64 games were also typically in the $60-$80 range as well, depending on the game.

The only things cheaper back in the day were the systems and their accessories. Some people bitch about the price of games today when they really shouldn't. They're cheap compared to the past. Adjusted for inflation, games were much more expensive 10 to 20 years ago than they are today. Can you imagine spending the equivalent of $80+ on an NES game?


Edit - Adjusted my NES/SNES numbers a bit.


Well I bought the games from Wal-Mart, and I specifically remember paying those amounts. That's why I thought PS2 games were so expensive when they came out. I even have some PS1 games lying around with the price tags still on them.
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote:
Original post by Halifax2
Quote:
Original post by Mastadon
Quote:
Original post by Halifax2
Really...Game Boy Games were $30? I didn't know that, since I didn't have the funds to get a game boy at the time. All I know is that PS1 games cost around $15-25, and Dreamcast games cost about $15-$30. Those were the days, honestly.


Typical PS1 and Dreamcast games were never that cheap brand new. They were priced at $49.99, with the occasional, less popular, games at $39.99. NES games were around $30-$40 new and SNES games were around $50 or more. I remember when I saw Chrono Trigger at Target or Best Buy, and it was $80! N64 games were also typically in the $60-$80 range as well, depending on the game.

The only things cheaper back in the day were the systems and their accessories. Some people bitch about the price of games today when they really shouldn't. They're cheap compared to the past. Adjusted for inflation, games were much more expensive 10 to 20 years ago than they are today. Can you imagine spending the equivalent of $80+ on an NES game?


Edit - Adjusted my NES/SNES numbers a bit.


Well I bought the games from Wal-Mart, and I specifically remember paying those amounts. That's why I thought PS2 games were so expensive when they came out. I even have some PS1 games lying around with the price tags still on them.


Maybe they were in the $40 range, although I do remember some costing $50. Were you buying these games when they first came out? 10+ years ago is a long time ago, so it's possible I'm wrong. :)
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I distinctly remember my uncle counting out the cost of my cousin's NES games:
50, 100, 150, 200, 250...
That's why we only had Mario/Duck Hunt :( :( :(
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote:
Original post by Rixter
I distinctly remember my uncle counting out the cost of my cousin's NES games:
50, 100, 150, 200, 250...
That's why we only had Mario/Duck Hunt :( :( :(


Hehe. That's why if we ever got an allowance, we'd walk down to the video store and rent Kung Fu or something. [smile] That is an if however...
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I think I remember paying somewhere around $86 for Star Wars: Shadows of the Empire for N64 when it came out. That was insanely expensive back then. Most of the more popular games (I think there were 6 - Mario 64, MarioCart 64... a few others I can't remember) that were cheaper at $49.
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote:
Original post by Moe
I think I remember paying somewhere around $86 for Star Wars: Shadows of the Empire for N64 when it came out. That was insanely expensive back then. Most of the more popular games (I think there were 6 - Mario 64, MarioCart 64... a few others I can't remember) that were cheaper at $49.


I couldn't remember why my parents didn't get me an N64 when it came out (I was, what, in the fourth grade?). Now I actually know. :P
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote:
Original post by Mastadon
Quote:
Original post by Halifax2
Quote:
Original post by Mastadon
Quote:
Original post by Halifax2
Really...Game Boy Games were $30? I didn't know that, since I didn't have the funds to get a game boy at the time. All I know is that PS1 games cost around $15-25, and Dreamcast games cost about $15-$30. Those were the days, honestly.


Typical PS1 and Dreamcast games were never that cheap brand new. They were priced at $49.99, with the occasional, less popular, games at $39.99. NES games were around $30-$40 new and SNES games were around $50 or more. I remember when I saw Chrono Trigger at Target or Best Buy, and it was $80! N64 games were also typically in the $60-$80 range as well, depending on the game.

The only things cheaper back in the day were the systems and their accessories. Some people bitch about the price of games today when they really shouldn't. They're cheap compared to the past. Adjusted for inflation, games were much more expensive 10 to 20 years ago than they are today. Can you imagine spending the equivalent of $80+ on an NES game?


Edit - Adjusted my NES/SNES numbers a bit.


Well I bought the games from Wal-Mart, and I specifically remember paying those amounts. That's why I thought PS2 games were so expensive when they came out. I even have some PS1 games lying around with the price tags still on them.


Maybe they were in the $40 range, although I do remember some costing $50. Were you buying these games when they first came out? 10+ years ago is a long time ago, so it's possible I'm wrong. :)


Ah yes, that's probably why. No, I didn't buy them when they came out. I was always the person to wait 2-4 weeks for the price to drop or something.
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I remember the original Tomb Raider on the Playstation.

It was my first console and I had no idea about the price of games, so I duly went round a few shops as a 9 year old boy with my £5 pocket money, dismayed to find brand new copies of Tomb Raider were retailing at no less than £40 (IIRC).

FAIL. How naive I was back then.
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote:
Original post by Halifax2
Really...Game Boy Games were $30? I didn't know that, since I didn't have the funds to get a game boy at the time. All I know is that PS1 games cost around $15-25, and Dreamcast games cost about $15-$30. Those were the days, honestly.


I'm pretty sure the "Greatest Hits" series were that cheap. And by the end of the PS1 there were a *lot* so maybe thats why that number sticks in your head. But first runs of good games weren't that cheap. I remember paying $50+ for FF7 the first week it came out.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0